How many years were you married?
We were married for 36 years.
Did you want a divorce?
Yes,after 12 years of dealing with his emotional affair I was finally ready to move on.
Describe the break-up of your marriage.
My husband had a 12 year long emotional affair. Some people feel this is not the same as infidelity but believe me, it makes for an absent spouse - or distracted one when he's home. I was lonely long before the divorce. I felt I was living with a distant roommate and yet I couldn't move on and find a real partner in life.
Divorce finally gave me the freedom to move on and though it woke my ex up and he realized what he had missed, by then it was too little too late. I had moved on emotionally. I have been divorced 4 years now and wouldn't trade it for the bad marriage for a minute. Problems? Yes, but better.
What helped you cope with your divorce?
Praying and meditating, knowing I had tried everything known to man to make it work. Had I not tried enough I might have questioned my decision to divorce because it is not part of my value system.
It helped to get out and dance, participate in other singles' activities and remain active in my church. Some people think of it as failure and think people are judging them but I found my friends accepted my decision and though they grieved for any unhappiness I felt, they respected me enough to remain loyal friends and not ask uncomfortable questions.
I did not moan about it, blame him or make excuses. I just accepted it and determined to be happy in my new life. Has it been easy? No, but easier than being in a bad marriage.
Fortunately I have a career as a nurse, not big money but enough for a modest existence and I have few material desires. Not all are able to support themselves after divorce and that would be harder. With years of a bad marriage, I was able to plan the exit and this helped.
- Marriage takes time to focus on the partner. It is necessary to care about what is important to the spouse.
- Selfishness in marriage does not work.
- Score-keeping does not work.
- Deep love, respect and commitment along with the ability to work out problems are critical.
- Sharing, openness and honesty can go a long way toward a happy marriage.
- I wish I had waited and not married so young. Hormones driving such life altering decisions can lead to disaster.
- Sometimes I think arranged marriages have advantages, though I would never have gone for that idea when I was young or even now.
- Meeting the right one is hard.