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surviving divorce or marriage?!


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There seems to be a few threads lately about this topic and I am very curious about the effects of divorce. Does divorce offer real comfort and happiness or does life just get worst, much worst. I'm thinking dealing with an ex husband, kids, holidays, and future new spouses would just be a complete and total nightmare.

 

If you have survived a divorce, would you do it again? Do you think it's better than staying in an unhappy marriage? A family member of mine is very close to this point. I just don't know what to say to her anymore. I just can't imagine divorce making anything better. Am I right or wrong? And why? There is no physical abuse. There are anger issues, there has been addiction (p*rn) issues, and seems to be emotional manipulation on different levels. But, the kids love him and he is a good provider. He's just not necessarily a nice person or easy person to live with. I guess the easiest way to describe him would be selfish. Everything is about his personal happiness and he doesn't seem to understand what her life is like or care. He does nothing around the house, carrying kids here or there, errands, schooling - nothing. He provides the paycheck. He doesn't make himself available on any level.

 

So, she has no formal education. What do you think? It seems to me she would be foolish to pursue a divorce. I just do not know what to say. Any thoughts about what divorce is REALLY like? Does it really offer peace or do you trade one set of problems for another?

 

Thanks so much!!

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I do too. That's just the point...I cant decide if that's a viable option for her, or if it would be just another mistake. I've never really discussed it with anyone before. It's not something that comes up in conversation. ;) Well, I have a brother that has been very honest about regretting it. Other than that, I have no idea what to offer up for advice. In general, I think you might be making a bad situation worse. I just don't know....

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I would divorce again in a heartbeat, because the marriage was so dysfunctional, husband was abusive to me and to our children. I should have done it earlier than I did, but didn't have the resolve and strength.

 

It is not pleasant to have to deal with ex's. Not at all. I keep that to a minimum and keep it regarding transfers of the children and important children information. I try to be there for my children to offer them support. They are now getting to know the man that I divorced for who he is and it isn't easy for them (they chose, as teens, to live with their dad).

 

If my ex had not been so abusive, I would have tried to stick it out for the children to get older.

 

If I had it to do again, I would purpose myself to not meet another man and remarry until the children were grown. Adding in a new relationship and family puts an incredible amount of strain on everyone involved. I would also stay in close proximity of my ex, although I wouldn't like that in some ways, to be accessible to my children more and to make things a lot easier. Yet, in other ways, I enjoy the distance....

 

For me, I have grown personally so much and have become such a better person... more secure, confident and enabled by getting out of the abusive relationship.

 

I am really, really looking forward to my youngest son's 18th birthday... we will have such a celebration as we've never had before!

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This thread has the potential to get nasty. There are some people here who do not think divorce is acceptable except in the most extreme cases like physical abuse.

 

I was divorced, and as it much as it sucked to have to deal with the ex and custody issues, it was infinitely better than staying in that marriage. I won't go into details. I do not regret that divorce at all. I am so much happier in my 2nd marriage. I've been married more than twice as long as the first time around and there simply is no comparison between the two marriages. It's like day and night. If it wasn't for my experience with this marriage, I would never believe that marriage could be as wonderful as it is.

 

I was a secretary and not making much money when I divorced. I was able to live with my mom so I didn't have to worry about rent. Trying to support yourself can be hard when you're not used to it. But I wouldn't let that stop me from leaving an unhappy marriage where there is no courtesy, kindness or respect. I feel bad for people who are stuck in an unwanted marriage for whatever reason. Despair is a good word that comes to mind.

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My sister is divorced. Her ex was an emotionally abusive man who had an affair with my sister's best friend. My sister has 3 children. She had been a SAHM, never finished college, hadn't worked in about 10 years. It was/is emotionally devastating. Of course, she didn't really have a choice, but divorce has definitely been the better option. She is becoming a self-sufficient person for the first time ever. She found a job that allows her to be with her children daily (at their school), she is finding out for the first time that her value doesn't come from who values her, but because she is valuable. KWIM?

 

Two years ago this seemed like a hopeless, miserable situation. Now she has a future without an awful human being telling her she's good for nothing. It can be done, but it was terribly hard for her and everyone else. Her kids are facing a lot of issues I can't even imagine, but they have people around them who love them and will do their very best to see them through.

 

I don't like divorce, I don't think it's the best in every situation, but it certainly can be beneficial. However, going into it with your eyes wide open about the difficulties is very important. The "end of the road" doesn't mean it's the end, but the way forward can be overwhelmingly difficult at times.

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Thanks ladies! Night Elf....I didn't think of the thread getting nasty. I guess I was assuming only those that had been through a divorce would be interested in chiming in...sorry.

 

I mean no disrespect for anyone. And, I have no interest in debating the Biblical 'rightness' of divorce. I am in complete agreement with anyone that feels that they need to get divorced b/c of ANY reason. I am not the judge.

 

So, I hope that no one will post to judge or ridicule others for their choices...that was not what this was about!

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What a blessing for her to get out and find something she can do to provide for her kids! My heart breaks for the children. I think that is the number one reason women stay...so sad to think of all the lives that get hurt...It seems in some situations you get hurt staying or leaving. :grouphug:

 

 

 

 

My sister is divorced. Her ex was an emotionally abusive man who had an affair with my sister's best friend. My sister has 3 children. She had been a SAHM, never finished college, hadn't worked in about 10 years. It was/is emotionally devastating. Of course, she didn't really have a choice, but divorce has definitely been the better option. She is becoming a self-sufficient person for the first time ever. She found a job that allows her to be with her children daily (at their school), she is finding out for the first time that her value doesn't come from who values her, but because she is valuable. KWIM?

 

Two years ago this seemed like a hopeless, miserable situation. Now she has a future without an awful human being telling her she's good for nothing. It can be done, but it was terribly hard for her and everyone else. Her kids are facing a lot of issues I can't even imagine, but they have people around them who love them and will do their very best to see them through.

 

I don't like divorce, I don't think it's the best in every situation, but it certainly can be beneficial. However, going into it with your eyes wide open about the difficulties is very important. The "end of the road" doesn't mean it's the end, but the way forward can be overwhelmingly difficult at times.

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I read a study done by psychologist a number of years ago that followed people several years after a divorce. It found that 1/3 of the people were "happier", 1/3 of the people were "less happy", and 1/3 of the people reported the same level of happiness several years after a divorce. I can't remember the details (who did the study, etc.), but the results stuck in my head. Every situation is unique and there isn't an obvious answer.

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Thanks ladies! Night Elf....I didn't think of the thread getting nasty. I guess I was assuming only those that had been through a divorce would be interested in chiming in...sorry.

 

I mean no disrespect for anyone. And, I have no interest in debating the Biblical 'rightness' of divorce. I am in complete agreement with anyone that feels that they need to get divorced b/c of ANY reason. I am not the judge.

 

So, I hope that no one will post to judge or ridicule others for their choices...that was not what this was about!

 

 

I am divorced and remarried. I went through hell in the marriage and since. However, I would not welcome participating in your thread because of the abundance of judgment, lack of support/empathy, stereotypes, assumption, and superiority in your encapsulation of your friend.

 

My advice to you is to stop engaging with her. Perspectives such as your can literally be damaging.

 

Sometimes in real life, a person is presented with a set of choices, all od which suck.

 

I hope your friend finds support and a healthy way out of her pain.

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I do not want to divorce......

but if we only had 2 children, I probably would.

Dysfunction does not have to include alot of physical abuse.

Neglect, emotional and mental abuse, lack of any positive or healthy communication... those can wear and tear any woman down.

 

I read a blog on this issue and it was very eye opening. Childhood hurts are at the root of alot of men's behavior. If they won't admit any, or ask for help or healing, then they are likely to show unmerited anger and hurt their wife and children.

 

As a believer, I know God hates divorce. I think He hates it because it hurts people and hurts the children most of all.

But I also know He hates for us to treat each other cruelly too. And I have had to tell 1 person in my life that I agreed with her divorce.

Now she has re married her ex. I stay out of it.

 

Since I have 7 chilren, and have become healthier over the years, I recognize the selfishness, and try to stand up more when I see any abuse. I am not perfect by any means, and never claimed to be.

I do have a problem with anyone thinking they are.

 

It is hard to say I was wrong, I apologize, but being honest is the best way to have a relationship. I am not ashamed to admit my faults because I am human.

 

It seems like alot of men are scared to death to admit they are ever wrong.

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Thank you for your thoughts. I'm sorry for your pain. :grouphug: This is just simply an honest, heartfelt thread born out of my trying to understand and help someone I love. No judgment.

 

 

 

 

 

I am divorced and remarried. I went through hell in the marriage and since. However, I would not welcome participating in your thread because of the abundance of judgment, lack of support/empathy, stereotypes, assumption, and superiority in your encapsulation of your friend.

 

My advice to you is to stop engaging with her. Perspectives such as your can literally be damaging.

 

Sometimes in real life, a person is presented with a set of choices, all od which suck.

 

I hope your friend finds support and a healthy way out of her pain.

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I think it depends completely on the situation. In any case, I don't think either decision is easy...I try never to judge, and just be a good friend. Marriage, even the best ones are never easy. Divorces, even the friendliest and on best terms is never easy either. Come to think of it....life is not easy.:confused:

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Divorce is very hard on the children. There is constant back and forth between houses and upheaval every weekend for visits and different rules in different houses. Then add in new boyfriends and girlfriends of the parents and the children can get very confused, depressed and stressed.

 

All that said, if there is abuse, adultry or addiction (unresolved) then I think the man or women married to the person with one or more of the 3 A's needs to get out for their own best interest and safety and for their children.

 

I left a marraige almost 20 years ago that had all 3 of those A's in it and it was the best decision I ever made. If my ex would have went for help for his addiction and anger issues, was not abusive towards me and wasn't a serial cheater and treated me with respect and dignity I would have stayed in the marraige, because I think vows and commitment are very important.

 

If it was just a matter of me being unhappy in a marraige without any of the 3A's contributing to that unhappiness I would have stayed at least until my youngest was of age (18) so that I didn't have to cause my children additional pain and sorrow with divorce. I would do that because I would want to keep my childen having security in a home and marraige until they were of age to go out on their own and be independant.

 

Had I been married to the same man and had not had children with him, I would have been gone in a heartbeat and would not have put up with any of his awful ways right from the get go.

 

But again, every marraige is different, this is just my own opinion on the matter.

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Oh my goodness! I could have actually written this myself! Wow! Good to know I am not alone with my thoughts. I've been pushing through a marriage with a lot of emtional abuse. Watching my family member struggle with her choices is really making me think more and more about my own. I've always held on to the hope that staying together is just simply better. But, as I get older, I don't know. Life is just simply hard, isn't it?!

 

Thanks for sharing!:grouphug:

 

 

 

I do not want to divorce......

but if we only had 2 children, I probably would.

Dysfunction does not have to include alot of physical abuse.

Neglect, emotional and mental abuse, lack of any positive or healthy communication... those can wear and tear any woman down.

 

I read a blog on this issue and it was very eye opening. Childhood hurts are at the root of alot of men's behavior. If they won't admit any, or ask for help or healing, then they are likely to show unmerited anger and hurt their wife and children.

 

As a believer, I know God hates divorce. I think He hates it because it hurts people and hurts the children most of all.

But I also know He hates for us to treat each other cruelly too. And I have had to tell 1 person in my life that I agreed with her divorce.

Now she has re married her ex. I stay out of it.

 

Since I have 7 chilren, and have become healthier over the years, I recognize the selfishness, and try to stand up more when I see any abuse. I am not perfect by any means, and never claimed to be.

I do have a problem with anyone thinking they are.

 

It is hard to say I was wrong, I apologize, but being honest is the best way to have a relationship. I am not ashamed to admit my faults because I am human.

 

It seems like alot of men are scared to death to admit they are ever wrong.

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Yes! Isn't that the truth!!!!

 

 

I think it depends completely on the situation. In any case, I don't think either decision is easy...I try never to judge, and just be a good friend. Marriage, even the best ones are never easy. Divorces, even the friendliest and on best terms is never easy either. Come to think of it....life is not easy.:confused:
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I have been separated from my husband for 11 yrs now. If I was to go back in time I would do it all again in a heart beat. Life was very bad with my husband, and there is no way it would have improved. For the first 6 years he had nothing to do with us. No visits or contact with the kids, no child support. After 6 years he signed the custody papers giving me sole custody and started paying support but still no real contact with the kids behind the occasional gift. Last summer he started actually taking an interest in them with by weekly daytime visits. At xmas he started overnights. He is inconsistant and it is never a biweekly thing. More like he calls us on Wednesday to say he wants them for that weekend. SOmetimes I allow it sometimes I say no. So my situation with dealing with him and holidays and visits is different than for most. He is not allowed to have holidays with them. He was missing in action for 10 years and we built up our traditions. I am not tossing those away just because he woke up one day and realized he missed a decade of the kids lives.

 

Otherwise it has its challenges. Financial issues being the top of them. BUT we were dirt poor when married, and he was spending our time bit of money on booze so even now being dirt poor we are still better off.

 

Remarriage for me has not come up at I am still legally married I have not tried to get into a long term relationship with anyone. I have barely dated in the last 11 years. He has a live in girlfriend, she is a lovely person and I believe 100% that she is the reason he attempts any sort of contact with the kids. There has been issues with how they treat the kids when they go for visits, but those are being ironned out. It's not so much the evil step mother so much as the clueless childless person.

 

Despite the headaches along the way and the stress that comes from being a single mom of many, especially when many have special needs, I would say I am much much happier having left my marriage than I would have been if I stayed in. I likely would have killed myself or him if we stayed together. He was a drunk, verbally mean, cheater, porn addiction etc. I never dreamed he would ever be physically abusive to me until he was. It only took the 1 time and we were gone. I have been content with my choice ever since.

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You are a very strong person! How blessed your children are to have such an amazing and STRONG mother as their role model! God Bless you!!!!!:grouphug:

 

 

 

I have been separated from my husband for 11 yrs now. If I was to go back in time I would do it all again in a heart beat. Life was very bad with my husband, and there is no way it would have improved. For the first 6 years he had nothing to do with us. No visits or contact with the kids, no child support. After 6 years he signed the custody papers giving me sole custody and started paying support but still no real contact with the kids behind the occasional gift. Last summer he started actually taking an interest in them with by weekly daytime visits. At xmas he started overnights. He is inconsistant and it is never a biweekly thing. More like he calls us on Wednesday to say he wants them for that weekend. SOmetimes I allow it sometimes I say no. So my situation with dealing with him and holidays and visits is different than for most. He is not allowed to have holidays with them. He was missing in action for 10 years and we built up our traditions. I am not tossing those away just because he woke up one day and realized he missed a decade of the kids lives.

 

Otherwise it has its challenges. Financial issues being the top of them. BUT we were dirt poor when married, and he was spending our time bit of money on booze so even now being dirt poor we are still better off.

 

Remarriage for me has not come up at I am still legally married I have not tried to get into a long term relationship with anyone. I have barely dated in the last 11 years. He has a live in girlfriend, she is a lovely person and I believe 100% that she is the reason he attempts any sort of contact with the kids. There has been issues with how they treat the kids when they go for visits, but those are being ironned out. It's not so much the evil step mother so much as the clueless childless person.

 

Despite the headaches along the way and the stress that comes from being a single mom of many, especially when many have special needs, I would say I am much much happier having left my marriage than I would have been if I stayed in. I likely would have killed myself or him if we stayed together. He was a drunk, verbally mean, cheater, porn addiction etc. I never dreamed he would ever be physically abusive to me until he was. It only took the 1 time and we were gone. I have been content with my choice ever since.

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I have a dear friend who has been married about 7 years now. They have a 3 year old... It's been a really rough 7 years.

Last summer she came within a hair's breadth of leaving. She stayed, but still isn't 100% sure it was the right decision.

The problem is, in many circumstances, there is no right decision. That, of course, makes it all the harder for people who have always tried to do the right thing in their lives.

:grouphug: to anyone going through this. It's gotta be so tough - I can't imagine.

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:iagree:

 

 

 

 

 

I have a dear friend who has been married about 7 years now. They have a 3 year old... It's been a really rough 7 years.

Last summer she came within a hair's breadth of leaving. She stayed, but still isn't 100% sure it was the right decision.

The problem is, in many circumstances, there is no right decision. That, of course, makes it all the harder for people who have always tried to do the right thing in their lives.

:grouphug: to anyone going through this. It's gotta be so tough - I can't imagine.

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Speaking as someone who is on marriage number two and who has two kids with said second husband (and wants to conceive a third with him), I'm still VERY happy that I divorced husband number one (who I still can't stand all these years later). No regrets about it here. I'd absolutely do it again in a heartbeat.

 

Honestly, I couldn't care less what anyone else's views on divorce are. It was the right decision for me, and a perfectly legal one. And fortunately I've now got an even healthier marriage and a couple more beautiful kids out of the deal. Your friend will have to make the right decision for HER in the end, and eventually she will do just that. And when she does, you should just be there for her to offer support, not judgment.

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Thanks everyone. I appreciate your honesty and I sure hope I didn't offend anyone. I never meant to do that. I just wanted to give good advice to someone I love very much. If I could offer any insight that would be helpful to her, I wanted to do that.

 

But, I guess in the end it's just a decision she will need to make. (obviously)It appears that there is no right or easy answer to this dilemma. I appreciate your stories and heart felt responses. You all are the best!!!!

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I have been divorced, and it's not something I would wish on my worst enemy. I didn't even have kids with xh and it was still horrible. We have zero contact; but the emotional aftermath was difficult and took a long time to work through. I still know the moment when I felt free and at peace; it was 12 years post divorce. There are still things that bring back the memories and pain; but not as often or with the same intensity.

 

That said, my alternative was to continue being married to someone who cheated repeatedly and was sometimes abusive. That wasn't exactly a good option, either.

 

Everyone's situation is different, and no-one can say what your family member should do. The best thing you can do is to listen and care, but don't offer advice.

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my divorce certainly improved my life, and that of my kids. My ex was a drunk, used drugs, stayed out all night without calling (and I mean ALL night, like into the next afternoon, sometimes for a couple of days), was verbally abusive, had several affairs, hung out in strip clubs all the time, took pics with nude strippers all over him, etc.

 

We have NEVER shared holidays. He has never had any real visitation. He rarely saw his children, and sees them even more rarely now.

 

At almost 45yo he has still not grown up. He still sleeps around. He can't hold a job. He owes thousands in back child support. He has tried to kill himself 3 times. He still drinks heavily. He has been addicted to pain pills. You name it.

 

My kids have had a MUCH more stable life with him NOT being a part of it. They are almost all adults now, and they see that for themselves. Being around him is very unsettling to them.

 

I can't believe I was ever married to him honestly. It makes me sick to my stomach when I think about it sometimes. How stupid could I have been?!? Of course, I'm thankful for my children, my husband who stepped in to help me raise them, and my family who has always supported me in my decisions.

Edited by StaceyinLA
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So, she has no formal education.

 

If you want to give her some advice, tell her to get an education or some kind of good job training. She needs to be able to support herself if and when she decides to leave her dh.

 

Additionally, I know this sounds sneaky, but she should start socking away cash somewhere. I'm not saying she should drain the bank accounts, but if there is the slightest concern that her dh might leave her high and dry if she asks for a divorce, she needs ready cash to pay for a place to live, food, and legal representation.

 

Finally, she needs to see a divorce attorney, lay all of her cards on the table, and get some solid advice about what she should do to get all of her ducks in a row, as well as find out how much financial support from her dh the court will likely award her.

 

Realistically, given the way you have described her current situation, she shouldn't pursue a divorce right now. She is unprepared to support herself and her family. (Obviously, if her dh was abusing her or the kids, I'd say she should leave immediately, but it doesn't sound like that is the case here.) She needs to prepare herself for some sort of career, so she will be able to support herself if her dh doesn't come through with support payments.

 

Does she have parents or siblings who could help her?

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Thanks everyone. I appreciate your honesty and I sure hope I didn't offend anyone. I never meant to do that. I just wanted to give good advice to someone I love very much. If I could offer any insight that would be helpful to her, I wanted to do that.

 

Unless you deleted some of your comments before I got here today, I can't imagine that anything you posted would have offended anyone. My impression was that you were trying to help a dear friend deal with an unfortunate situation, and you wanted to hear others' perspectives on life after divorce.

 

You didn't seem at all judgmental to me; you sounded like a very good friend. :grouphug:

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For me, divorce was painful at the time, but needed. And my life is 100% better now. Without compare. Words cannot express how much happier and better and healthier my life is because of my divorce.

 

Yes, I still have to deal with my ex, yes, it was hard on my son, but he is happier, I'm happier, and my ex is happier.

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For me, divorce was painful at the time, but needed. And my life is 100% better now. Without compare. Words cannot express how much happier and better and healthier my life is because of my divorce.

 

Yes, I still have to deal with my ex, yes, it was hard on my son, but he is happier, I'm happier, and my ex is happier.

:iagree:

This, except it was my daughter.

 

I envy all of you who got to do the happy dance when they turned 18. She'll be 18 in two weeks but I still have to deal with ex. He's on the hook for 1/2 her college costs and he's not paying them willingly so off to court we go.

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If it was just a matter of me being unhappy in a marraige without any of the 3A's contributing to that unhappiness I would have stayed at least until my youngest was of age (18) so that I didn't have to cause my children additional pain and sorrow with divorce. I would do that because I would want to keep my childen having security in a home and marraige until they were of age to go out on their own and be independant.

 

 

 

Just to remind everyone, children can be very damaged by a parent even when there is no adultery or abuse or addiction. My ex was very very clincally depressed, emotional neglectful although not abusive, and a horrible example of what a man should be. I realized my son was growing up thinking that behavior was normal, and it wasn't. He is much happier now, and his father is a much better parent when it is just for a few days in a row, instead of full time. He just couldn't handle full time anything.

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People get hurt in varying degrees in *every* marriage relationship. There is, IMO, a responsibility for those who choose a marriage partner to choose wisely and to choose forever even though I'm not naive enough to think it's some sort of guarantee.

 

I do NOT refer to those who divorce because of infidelity without repentance OR abuse here.

 

Most people I know who are "happy" with their divorce feel that they deserved that start-over because the person they chose turned out to be a loser that they somehow had no clue or signals about. And most women, at least, that I know who have divorced change significantly afterwards. They are all about not being "victimized" anymore--and I'm referring to women who chose a loser or are now choosing a new life, new relationship or "happiness" over the hard work of staying, NOT women who were actually abused in some way and were literally victims. Their persona changes from "mom" to "hot mom who is entering the dating scene again!"...you can always tell who has become a divorcee on FB and it makes one cringe. I've seen several Christian ladies online decide that being a strong woman after divorce now includes using trashy language, dating in ways they wouldn't allow their teen daughters, and being so self-focused (particularly about their looks) that I wonder if they remember they have children. Suddenly they're able to refer to their ex, another human being, in ways that they'd never let their children talk about another person. I have yet to see someone *truly* divorce with sadness, humility, and grace rather than in self-pity, self-righteousness, greed, and at least a little rancor. Again, in every case not related to infidelity without repentance or abuse.

 

I think divorce is one of the ugliest aspects of our society today and I would only very rarely recommend it. I have more to say, particularly as a child of more than one divorce (dh is, too), and also as a Christian, but I don't know that the latter applies here so I'll stop. lol

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This is great advice. And, you are right. I think often being proactive is the hardest part- doing something. As sad as it is to move forward and make a path for yourself, it's the smartest thing to do. All of these comments make perfect sense to me. I appreciate your input.

 

 

 

If you want to give her some advice, tell her to get an education or some kind of good job training. She needs to be able to support herself if and when she decides to leave her dh.

 

Additionally, I know this sounds sneaky, but she should start socking away cash somewhere. I'm not saying she should drain the bank accounts, but if there is the slightest concern that her dh might leave her high and dry if she asks for a divorce, she needs ready cash to pay for a place to live, food, and legal representation.

 

Finally, she needs to see a divorce attorney, lay all of her cards on the table, and get some solid advice about what she should do to get all of her ducks in a row, as well as find out how much financial support from her dh the court will likely award her.

 

Realistically, given the way you have described her current situation, she shouldn't pursue a divorce right now. She is unprepared to support herself and her family. (Obviously, if her dh was abusing her or the kids, I'd say she should leave immediately, but it doesn't sound like that is the case here.) She needs to prepare herself for some sort of career, so she will be able to support herself if her dh doesn't come through with support payments.

 

Does she have parents or siblings who could help her?

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No, I didn't delete anything, and I appreciate you understanding my position. I felt that a couple of posters thought I was being a little insensitive to the topic. I never meant to do that. I guess I assumed that since I was asking for advice it was clear that I was open to either side of the situation, hoping to form a logical outcome.

 

I've learned that when it comes to emotionally charged circumstances, you probably can't find a logical outcome though. It's not that easy.

 

Thanks for your kind words and for your advice. :001_smile:

 

 

Unless you deleted some of your comments before I got here today, I can't imagine that anything you posted would have offended anyone. My impression was that you were trying to help a dear friend deal with an unfortunate situation, and you wanted to hear others' perspectives on life after divorce.

 

You didn't seem at all judgmental to me; you sounded like a very good friend. :grouphug:

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I have yet to see someone *truly* divorce with sadness, humility, and grace rather than in self-pity, self-righteousness, greed, and at least a little rancor. Again, in every case not related to infidelity without repentance or abuse.

 

I think divorce is one of the ugliest aspects of our society today and I would only very rarely recommend it. I have more to say, particularly as a child of more than one divorce (dh is, too), and also as a Christian, but I don't know that the latter applies here so I'll stop. lol

 

Look harder. You can come meet me if you like. I was heartbroken to realize that divorce was the best way to make sure my son grew up to be a healthy person. I cried night after night. I was truly sorry for my poor choice in mate. I was sorry for the pain I caused my son and my husband. But it was the right thing, for myself and my ex and my son. I would like to say that there was grace involved, and still is. We are very civil to each other, always put our son's needs first, and have had a very harmonious post divorce relationship. Sure there have been occaisional issues...like when his new girlfriend started stalking me, or when I found out he wasn't reminding my son to shower, but these were handled promptly and without malice. (and yes, he broke up with the girlfriend immediately, and she had never had contact with my son...when we started dating again we did NOT allow contact with our son until the relationship was very serious....the only person my son met was my now husband, and he has never met a date of my husbands.)

 

I think your view is narrow and meanspritied.

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I understand what you are saying. But, that is not the situation I am referring to. This situation is nothing like a 'hot mom' trying to overcome being a victim. This person has been emotionally shut off by her husband. They've been married for a long time and together for over 20yrs. Unfortunately, some men (not all by any means), realize that they have a large amount of control after children come on the scene and they abuse that power.

 

Would you think it ok for a man to lose his temper while driving a minivan and act like he was going to drive off the road and wreck the car while having his foot down all the way on the gas? In the car was a three wk old baby, wife and other grown children begging him to stop. Hmmmm...what about his violent episodes where he called his wife a 'fat *****' out loud where his kids could hear?

 

I think that this started when they were young and she just didn't know how to handle it. It's since progressed into something entirely different. She has been having panic attacks for over six yrs. At first, I didn't think there was a connection (duh). Now, I'm starting to see that there is so much more to it. However, you just don't take divorce lightly. So, in an effort to try not to react emotionally and give solid advice, I am here asking for some truth about what her life *could* be like. Goodness knows, I would not want anything to get any worse for her. KWIM?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

People get hurt in varying degrees in *every* marriage relationship. There is, IMO, a responsibility for those who choose a marriage partner to choose wisely and to choose forever even though I'm not naive enough to think it's some sort of guarantee.

 

I do NOT refer to those who divorce because of infidelity without repentance OR abuse here.

 

Most people I know who are "happy" with their divorce feel that they deserved that start-over because the person they chose turned out to be a loser that they somehow had no clue or signals about. And most women, at least, that I know who have divorced change significantly afterwards. They are all about not being "victimized" anymore--and I'm referring to women who chose a loser or are now choosing a new life, new relationship or "happiness" over the hard work of staying, NOT women who were actually abused in some way and were literally victims. Their persona changes from "mom" to "hot mom who is entering the dating scene again!"...you can always tell who has become a divorcee on FB and it makes one cringe. I've seen several Christian ladies online decide that being a strong woman after divorce now includes using trashy language, dating in ways they wouldn't allow their teen daughters, and being so self-focused (particularly about their looks) that I wonder if they remember they have children. Suddenly they're able to refer to their ex, another human being, in ways that they'd never let their children talk about another person. I have yet to see someone *truly* divorce with sadness, humility, and grace rather than in self-pity, self-righteousness, greed, and at least a little rancor. Again, in every case not related to infidelity without repentance or abuse.

 

I think divorce is one of the ugliest aspects of our society today and I would only very rarely recommend it. I have more to say, particularly as a child of more than one divorce (dh is, too), and also as a Christian, but I don't know that the latter applies here so I'll stop. lol

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Would you think it ok for a man to lose his temper while driving a minivan and act like he was going to drive off the road and wreck the car while having his foot down all the way on the gas? In the car was a three wk old baby, wife and other grown children begging him to stop. Hmmmm...what about his violent episodes where he called his wife a 'fat *****' out loud where his kids could hear?

 

 

Okay this is not a marriage to counsel her to stay in. This is a marriage to counsel her to get out. How long ago was the incident with the van/speeding/threats? How often do these outbursts occur? Given that she is now having panic attacks obviously these things are effecting her greatly. WOrkablity or not she needs to get out. You mention grown kids. Would any of them take her in so she could get on her feet?

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I understand what you are saying. But, that is not the situation I am referring to. This situation is nothing like a 'hot mom' trying to overcome being a victim. This person has been emotionally shut off by her husband. They've been married for a long time and together for over 20yrs. Unfortunately, some men (not all by any means), realize that they have a large amount of control after children come on the scene and they abuse that power.

 

Would you think it ok for a man to lose his temper while driving a minivan and act like he was going to drive off the road and wreck the car while having his foot down all the way on the gas? In the car was a three wk old baby, wife and other grown children begging him to stop. Hmmmm...what about his violent episodes where he called his wife a 'fat *****' out loud where his kids could hear?

 

I think that this started when they were young and she just didn't know how to handle it. It's since progressed into something entirely different. She has been having panic attacks for over six yrs. At first, I didn't think there was a connection (duh). Now, I'm starting to see that there is so much more to it. However, you just don't take divorce lightly. So, in an effort to try not to react emotionally and give solid advice, I am here asking for some truth about what her life *could* be like. Goodness knows, I would not want anything to get any worse for her. KWIM?

 

The nature of the abuse cycle is that it is progressive. Abusive men don't start out by calling names. It is a gradual, insidious process. Eventually, many outright abusive/dysfunctional things become the couple's "norm" and fly under the radar.

 

Here is a link to just a part of the dynamic:

 

http://lundybancroft.blogspot.com/2012/04/when-his-put-downs-sound-true.html

 

Years of micro-assuaults (not to suggest that abuse = physical) create a PTSD syndrome in the victim. They literally become mentally ill, and unable to think, made good decisions. By the end of my own 15 year experience, I believed every word he said about me.

 

*Staying* under those circumstances is death.

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This thread has the potential to get nasty. There are some people here who do not think divorce is acceptable except in the most extreme cases like physical abuse.

 

I was divorced, and as it much as it sucked to have to deal with the ex and custody issues, it was infinitely better than staying in that marriage. I won't go into details. I do not regret that divorce at all. I am so much happier in my 2nd marriage. I've been married more than twice as long as the first time around and there simply is no comparison between the two marriages. It's like day and night. If it wasn't for my experience with this marriage, I would never believe that marriage could be as wonderful as it is.

 

I was a secretary and not making much money when I divorced. I was able to live with my mom so I didn't have to worry about rent. Trying to support yourself can be hard when you're not used to it. But I wouldn't let that stop me from leaving an unhappy marriage where there is no courtesy, kindness or respect. I feel bad for people who are stuck in an unwanted marriage for whatever reason. Despair is a good word that comes to mind.

 

I've gotten a pm before from a poster who thinks abuse isn't a good enough reason. She wanted me to consider how wrong it was to leave my sadistic and extremely violent exh. :glare:

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I've gotten a pm before from a poster who thinks abuse isn't a good enough reason. She wanted me to consider how wrong it was to leave my sadistic and extremely violent exh. :glare:

 

Tell me. I've gotten this, in various forms and intensity, for 7+ years.

 

:grouphug:

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You have to make a pro/ con chart between the options. I've done this many times over the years. I'm a "AAA" person too-- abuse, adultery, addiction, though like everything, those can be relative terms.

 

For instance I don't consider porn watching adultery. I do consider workaholism an addiction. And a lot of emotional abuse I'd be willing to endure in a way I wouldn't endure physical abuse. (But that's just me... I seriously do not judge people who would leave over emotional abuse.)

 

Each person has to make their own decision. From the families I've watched I can say divorce is really hard on the kids, even if the parents are getting along. So the situation would have to be very bad indeed for me to break up my kids' little world.

 

Me trying to make on my own in the world would be a joke anyway... I can barely make it through the day doing brainless mommy stuff, me trying to start a career at age 38 would just be a sad thing to see.:grouphug:

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A few yrs ago. As far as I know, that was the last bad episode. Her children are all still young enough to be at home with her. None of them are of legal age yet. So, she still has her hands full. But, the episodes have lessoned to a degree b/c I think he sees that his children are capable of judging him. It's not just him trying to tell her that she's crazy as much as it is now the children can see him for what he is too. I think b/c he can't lose his temper so much with her/them he is taking it to a different level of 'mental manipulation'. He is just pulling away and not being helpful and in some cases just difficult to live with...or maybe it would be called 'moody'. I don't know.

 

The anger seems to have gotten much, much better since the kids are older. He's very careful how ppl view him. He does not at ALL acknowledge any anger issues within himself...or addiction or anything for that matter. It's always been blamed on her...one way or another.

 

I just feel like if the anger goes away, maybe she can live with him in peace. I don't know...will it rear it's ugly head later?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Okay this is not a marriage to counsel her to stay in. This is a marriage to counsel her to get out. How long ago was the incident with the van/speeding/threats? How often do these outbursts occur? Given that she is now having panic attacks obviously these things are effecting her greatly. WOrkablity or not she needs to get out. You mention grown kids. Would any of them take her in so she could get on her feet?
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A few yrs ago. As far as I know, that was the last bad episode. Her children are all still young enough to be at home with her. None of them are of legal age yet. So, she still has her hands full. But, the episodes have lessoned to a degree b/c I think he sees that his children are capable of judging him. It's not just him trying to tell her that she's crazy as much as it is now the children can see him for what he is too. I think b/c he can't lose his temper so much with her/them he is taking it to a different level of 'mental manipulation'. He is just pulling away and not being helpful and in some cases just difficult to live with...or maybe it would be called 'moody'. I don't know.

 

The anger seems to have gotten much, much better since the kids are older. He's very careful how ppl view him. He does not at ALL acknowledge any anger issues within himself...or addiction or anything for that matter. It's always been blamed on her...one way or another.

 

I just feel like if the anger goes away, maybe she can live with him in peace. I don't know...will it rear it's ugly head later?

 

Based on what you have shared, he sounds manipulative and abusive. Not "just" limited to explosive abusive moments, but abusive in terms of power and control as a part of their everyday dynamic.

 

The book "Why Does He Do That" by Lundy Bancroft would be helpful, as would "The Verbally Abusive Relationship" by Patricia Evans.

 

She needs therapy to be able to see the situation clearly.

 

If she divorces him while she has minor kids, the abuse won't go away, it will just change form.

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Most people I know who are "happy" with their divorce feel that they deserved that start-over because the person they chose turned out to be a loser that they somehow had no clue or signals about. And most women, at least, that I know who have divorced change significantly afterwards. They are all about not being "victimized" anymore--and I'm referring to women who chose a loser or are now choosing a new life, new relationship or "happiness" over the hard work of staying, NOT women who were actually abused in some way and were literally victims. Their persona changes from "mom" to "hot mom who is entering the dating scene again!"...you can always tell who has become a divorcee on FB and it makes one cringe. I've seen several Christian ladies online decide that being a strong woman after divorce now includes using trashy language, dating in ways they wouldn't allow their teen daughters, and being so self-focused (particularly about their looks) that I wonder if they remember they have children. Suddenly they're able to refer to their ex, another human being, in ways that they'd never let their children talk about another person. I have yet to see someone *truly* divorce with sadness, humility, and grace rather than in self-pity, self-righteousness, greed, and at least a little rancor. Again, in every case not related to infidelity without repentance or abuse.

 

 

 

I seriously doubt people are sharing their struggles and their true feelings on Facebook. What you are seeing is the protective shell they put on to deal with the world and protect themselves. The "hot mom" is probably how some would have described me when I was divorcing. Not that I dated a lot but I had lost a lot of weight, gotten out from under a man who constantly told me how ugly, how fat, how stupid I was so, yes I enjoyed looking good and feeling better about myself. I also spent many nights crying and didn't really feel worthy of being loved. I did not share my sadness with many people.

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I seriously doubt people are sharing their struggles and their true feelings on Facebook. What you are seeing is the protective shell they put on to deal with the world and protect themselves. The "hot mom" is probably how some would have described me when I was divorcing. Not that I dated a lot but I had lost a lot of weight, gotten out from under a man who constantly told me how ugly, how fat, how stupid I was so, yes I enjoyed looking good and feeling better about myself. I also spent many nights crying and didn't really feel worthy of being loved. I did not share my sadness with many people.

 

:iagree::iagree: This. I didn't even know I was operating with PTSD, but I did know that I didn't share with many about the details of my marriage. No one in my (Christian) divorce care group did, either.

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