Tag Archives: divorced

Yup, Nope! Not Today

Yup, Nope! Not today..

It is Sunday afternoon I am drinking Diet Pepsi and literally slammed a snack size bag of Cheetos and Oreos. No music. I am listening to my daughter visit with her Dad. I am trying to be calm but if you read what I ate I think you know the level of anxiety he brings.

He is always late for his visits. When he does get here, he stands outside our front porch until somebody lets him in. Today I gave him some updates and reminded him of some appointments and how much everything cost. To which he says “oh … I forgot your check”.I say that’s ok.

It’s not.

But as I mentioned before he hasn’t helped me hardly at all. I don’t trust him to start. It’s hard not to be angry at how little he helps with everything. I texted him asking for our daughter’s dental office number the other day and four hours later he responds with the number and ” I thought your parents handled that.”

When I ask why he doesn’t ZOOM or visit more with our daughter he says because he’s waiting on her. Yup, Nope!

I really try, I  do. I want to get along for our daughter.But he knows what buttons to push and he says he will try but when push comes to shove… yup, nope. That’s Midwest for no. He doesn’t come through.

Which is why we are here.

He didn’t when we were married either. That’s how we got here.

When I was pregnant and we were getting ready for our daughter he didn’t help. Imagine me almost nine month pregnant getting her room ready. Getting the inside and outside of our house ready.I had a hard delivery so we had to stay in the hospital. I reminded him to please clean out your car before you pick us up. 

He didn’t.

It was so bad the nurse wouldn’t let us get in until he cleaned it up.

If you ask him he was always too…

Tired

Busy

I never did enough.

There are always two sides to every story and the truth is somewhere in the middle.

This is hard.

This is frustrating.

But this is what it is.

And at the end of the day it’s not about me.It’s about our daughter.She’s what matters. So I can continue to try through all of it. No matter how hard it is. And it is.

Let’s be honest, no one gets married to get divorced.All we can is try our best. We have some pretty important people counting on us.

Be safe

Much love Mommas

💚Caprise

Dating Post Divorce

Dating post divorce….I have this friend who is recently, finally divorced after a long difficult divorce and traumatic marriage.  She is finally ready to rediscover herself and to start dating again.  She has entrusted me to act as a friend, confidant, and consultant.  During our discussions I have jokingly referred to the fact that a “Dating Post-Divorce” handbook doesn’t exist, so we each have to live our own journeys.  I have relived some of my own awakening in that initial post-divorce period.  I have been able to look back and be proud of the growth I’ve made, the healing I’ve done, and the person I have become.  It seems that the things she and I talk about are common themes amongst all divorcees, so I thought it might be helpful to share with others.  These are things that if a handbook did exist – I wish would be included.

 

  1. There is bound to be anxiety.

You have survived a marriage that ended, and survived a (maybe painful) divorce.  The thought of doing everything again and FAILING again is difficult to acknowledge and process through initially.  It is ok to be scared.  But try to push through – don’t let the fear keep you from doing things that are important to you.

  1. You don’t have to marry every person you meet, or date.

Dating as an adult with kids is a different ballgame, folks.  You are not obligated to do anything.  Your relationship (or lack thereof) can be anything you want it to be.  Want to be single?  Awesome.  Want to date casually, without strings?  Awesome.  Want to have sexual relationships?  Awesome.  Want to have a committed relationship?  Awesome.  You get to decide what you want, when you want it, how you want it.  Along those lines….

  1. You have power.

One of the most powerful things for me post-divorce was rediscovering myself.  Dating again really helped me to do that.  You have the power to say no.  To start something and not finish it.  The power to speak your truth.  The power to change your mind.  The power to verbalize what you want.  The power to verbalize what you need.  The power to make your own decisions.  The power to control your own body and the choices you make for it.  No one else gets the power to do that for you.  You are in control.

  1. You don’t owe anything to anyone but yourself (ok, and your kids).

You are not obligated to anything for anyone.  See above.  YOU get to make the choices that feel right for you.  Those choices are different for each of us, but we are the ones that have to make them at the end of the day, and own them right choice or mistake.

  1. It’s ok to not know what you want.  

It’s hard initially when you start dating again to figure out what is really important to you.  What you really and truly want and don’t want.  What is a deal breaker and what is flexible.  Along those lines we are told we should “get out there again” soon after divorce, and it feels like everyone is telling us we should be looking for our next husband pronto.  It’s ok to take things one step at a time, and to assess your needs/wants along the way.  As I told my friend….the only question you need to answer after the first date is whether the person you just met is worth meeting again to continue to get to know.  It’s ok to define the relationship as it develops, to continue to float along because your needs are being met and the other person’s needs are being met.  You have the power to pull the plug and move on if those needs are ever not being met.  It’s ok to define the relationship too, if that puts you at ease.  You do you.

  1. Try to let go of expectations.

I’m not sure about you, but this is a hard one for me.  Dating in today’s world is EXHAUSTING at times.  Some of the expectations we carry with us (societal norms, our experience with relationships from those around us, etc.) seem to make that worse.  You don’t have to be anything you don’t want to be, do anything you don’t want to do.  Neither should be person you are getting to know, or dating, have to be anything they don’t want to be, or do anything they don’t want to do.  Mutual respect between two people, and respect for yourself is key.  You can’t force things to happen in a manner you want them to.  Some things work out and some don’t.  You may get ghosted; you may find the love of your life.  Let things develop and see where they go, without the expectation that it will be anything in particular.

  1. We all come with baggage.

Mine comes in the package of trauma and anxiety from an emotionally abusive relationship.  I had processed a lot, healed a lot by the time I started dating.  But I have had so so much to learn about myself.  My trauma and anxiety have reared their head when least expected in a relationship, and I have had to battle them.  Learn from them.  Learn when my feelings are an old response, or triggered by my past.  Learn when I can trust my gut and when I can’t.  The person you are dating may have baggage too.  Treat theirs in the manner you hope yours is treated, with patience and respect for them.

  1. We ALL make mistakes.

What’s important is what we learn from them.  The same concept we teach our kids applies to us too.  That leads us to….

  1. Be patient with yourself and kind to yourself.

This is a learning process.  At times it seems fast, at times slow.  At times you know what you want, at times you don’t.  At times the stress is high, at times the savoring and enjoyment of life is prominent.  Wherever you are at, whatever your choices, be patient with yourself and kind to yourself.  You would do the same for others.

Happy Dating,

H

A List Of Things I Dread -#1

A List of Things I Dread

Number 1:

First Happy New Year Mamas!

We made it….

Thank goodness.

It’s Sunday night and I have sufficiently procrastinated. My new co- writer by my side, although my furry sidekick is asleep. I’m munching on Starburst Sour gummies. Ever since my solo trip to California and being introduced to a sour gummy candy bar provided for the musicians, I always have some on hand.

Music today NEEDTOBREATHE: Banks.

It calms me down.

Tomorrow I go back to work which is not a worry but at some point next week I need to talk to my ex husband about our daughter.

Specifically that she will be going to a therapist. 

AND that he will have to pay half.

Money is a tough topic anyway.

With anyone, but someone who you aren’t married to anymore.

Who when you were married kept a spreadsheet of the money he did give you.

Ugh

Here’s the thing. If he can’t or won’t help I can figure it out. I always do. The deal is he is supposed to help.

Which he sporadically does. 

And here’s the thing: it is fine. 

Because again I will figure it out.

I always do.

But what it is how he makes me feel. 

How he has always made me feel.

That he forgets when we met he was unemployed, a college drop out. I was working three jobs trying to pay off my two degrees.

I found him a job, put him through college.

When I left he wrote me a check let me fill up a U- haul and told me I made this choice.

He wouldn’t divorce me for years. So I couldn’t get aid or insurance. 

When he would come pick our daughter he would walk in my apartment and sit down and talk to me about his job and how much money he was making. The women he was dating. 

Finally one day at the urging of my friends I told him he can’t keep doing that.

The fight that followed was so bad that after that every time he came to my apartment my neighbors would make sure they were around.

Flash forward we have been officially divorced for nine years.

But I have had similar incidents. An unfortunate phone call from the lobby of my workplace. A co-worker walking in on him yelling at me.

Veiled threats about taking me to court knowing financially I can’t fight him. 

To the point I now own a house with my parents. They are my buffer.

My anchor. My shield.

All of this is I’ve held onto and I am not even sure I should put it here.

But everyone thinks they know the choices you make. 

Sometimes you let them believe it, it’s easier.

Two years ago I confronted him about an incident with my daughter he lied about, the next thing I know he has a lawyer.

All I want.

All I have ever wanted is a co-existence that is best for my daughter.

I want to be able to just say hey…and have a discussion.

Instead I have to worry.

Should I have asked first.

Do I just pay for it?

I mean the guy on our divorce agreement changed half of college tuition to state college… to save money. 

Will this make things bad again. Especially now that we seem to be at a place of calm. 

So… I am dreading this.

Asking for money.

For help.

Even though he is supposed to.

So this as a single Mom is something I dread.

Talking about money.

In the coming weeks I will add to the list.

Send good juju.

 

Be safe.

Much love Mamas.

💚Caprise

Nothing Gets By Teenagers

Nothing gets by my teenagers…

My girls are almost 16 and 13. Yes, in their teenage years. We have a pretty close relationship, which I value very much. I have raised them pretty independently and let them make a lot of decisions on their own. I have always believed in giving them some freedom, if they can not handle it, then I tighten the reigns a little bit. So, when the topic of MY dating came up, it caught me completely off guard.

I have not dated anyone seriously for about 4 years and after we broke up, I never brought anyone around the kids. Their dad was remarried and they have had their share of challenges on that side. So after my boyfriend and I broke up about 4 years ago, I just kept that part of my life quiet. And honestly, I haven’t given that much time to dating, so their has been no one even worth mentioning.

And then it happened, I was driving my oldest home from practice and she heard my phone ding… and then she says, “ Ohh is that a snap from Nick” (in that teenage half kidding snotty voice) and I almost thought I heard her wrong.. And it took me a few minutes to pull myself together and think of what I was going to say and how was I going to answer her questions.

She says “ your phone always dings and it says… Nick is typing”..

Then you open it, then you laugh and smile”…

It was like she had been watching me for months. She knew all my little secrets. And I had thought I had not given any hints away. Damn it.

Then, she asked “ who is Nick mother… I wanted to just say “nevermind” but I had to remind myself that I have always been open with my kids. I have always taken the time to answer their questions as honestly, as I can. I have been far more open with them, than just give them nonsense.

I told her it was a someone that I had gotten to know over the last few months and that I was dating, and she seemed happy with the answer. I know she ran an told her sister the minute I was out of the room. I also assured her that we were moving very slow and that we were just newly dating. But I am sure it did not come out like that to her sister…

So, the next couple months, have been filled with little sarcastic remarks from the two teens or the “two peas in a pod” about my dating. It’s the one topic that they love to band together on instead of bickering about. he snarky little comments they whisper under their breath, like “ohh is that a text from Nick”… with that humor in their voice.

At times, I feel like they are the mothers and I am the daughter. Just waiting for their nosy questions-watching to see if I am going to sneak out after curfew, watching to see if I have done my hair, watching to see if I am wearing lipstick today. Yes, they notice it all.

Most of my days are filled with driving my kids to and from school, in between working, then driving them back and forth to activities, plus making sure I am correctly teaching them and parenting them, in between all of the millions of other things, that need to be done, all while I am wondering if I am even doing anything right. Ohhh and don’t forget feeding them.

So this topic of dating in our house, has kind of added a new form for lightness and fun. It has made me realize that they are getting older and understand things… they may even understand that at times, their mom needs to have a little fun. And maybe at times, I can be a little more open with them about my life.

It also made me realize, my kids are watching me all the time.. Just when I think I am sneaking something by them, they catch me…but I love that they feel open enough to come to me and ask..

-Snarky

www.snarkydivorcedgal.com

 

Divorce Did Not Ruin My Child

I have heard it many times… “My divorce ruined my kids lives”… False. Changes that happen in your life, do not ruin your kids lives. We all experience changes that will affect the lives of your children. And sometimes throughout all those changes, we all come out better.

Getting divorced does not ruin your kids lives… Before I decided to go through with my divorce, I struggled with how it would affect my kids. It was the number one thing that was holding me back from going through with my divorce. I would constantly worry if they would be ok and make it through all the transitions. Would they be upset, mad, angry, or would they act out… all of these worries raced through my mind over and over again.

But 5 years later…I can tell you that I did not ruin my kids lives. Yes, Their lives are different now. But they have adjusted to the changes. Yes, we have had some struggles through the way. However a lot of the struggles that we have faced, are just growing up parenting struggles. It has not always been a party…

However, I could not stay in a loveless marriage.

All of us worry about how divorce will affect our kids. I don’t think we would be human if we did not. But my kids saw everything and they picked up on so much that I don’t even realize.

My youngest was 4 when I got divorced. He often replays scenarios to me of his dad and I fighting in the last stages of our marriage. He will also mention how nice it is that dad and I don’t fight anymore. I am always so curious because his dad and I did not have loud arguments, but obviously to a 4 year old at the time.. he picked up on a lot more than we thought. It is also how a 4 year old interpreted our relationship and marriage.

I believe its how you handle all parts of your divorce, from the beginning, through the process, and all the years after…

There are things that I have done that have helped the transition over the last few years.

I have been able to tell when my kids needed a little additional support. All 3 of my kids have gone to counseling separately at different times in their lives. Each one faced different challenges at different ages and just needed to work through it. Alot of it was the changes in households and different parenting styles. I knew they could use a neutral person to talk too and work it out.

I continued counseling throughout and after my divorce. I did this because it was my outlet to let out my frustrations and emotions. It helped me control my emotions with my ex in front of my children. Counseling kept me grounded when I really just wanted to tell my ex what an idiot he was at times. Or it taught me to refrain from sharing my true feelings about my ex’s decisions in front of the kids.

My ex and I have also stayed very informed in their lives. I have learned to have conversations with my children and my ex all together, so there is no miscommunication between any of us. It gives my kids a chance to voice their opinion in front of both of us. And it has taken a lot of the pressure off me as always being the one having to speak for my kids.

I am very open and honest with my kids, even more so now that they are older. My girls are teenagers now, so their dad gets under their skin all the time… just being a dad to teenagers. I have always tried to keep my comments and negative thoughts to myself, and I still do now even more. Its hard. Many times I would love to tell them what I really think, but I want them to have a very healthy and positive relationship with us both. Its so hard to keep all my under my breath comments to myself. I also want my kids to form their own opinions and not be influenced by what I think.

So, no my divorce has not ruined my kids. I do not think it has ruined anything in any of our lives. My kids see how happy I am now, plus I can tell that they are happy. And they see how much love and support they get from both of their parents, just separately.

 

-snarky

https://www.snarkydivorcedgirl.com/

From Married Boy Mom to Single Boy Mom

Being a boy mom is both amazing and gross.  The love between a mother and a son is indescribable, but so are the smells.

The moment I saw those two pink lines on that little white stick, I knew I was having a boy.  I wasn’t shocked one bit when the ultrasound technician confirmed that three months later.  What I didn’t know was that 9 years after his birth I would go from a married boy mom to a single boy mom.

I grew up as a total girly-girl.  Bugs, dirt, and fart jokes just weren’t my thing.  That was something that I left up to his dad.  I quickly realized as the divorce proceedings began that I was going to be doing most of the parenting on my own, and that meant I had to become comfortable with all things boy so that my son was comfortable with all things boy.

These are a few things I’ve learned during my transition from a married boy mom to a single boy mom.

Expecting him to be the “man of the house” wasn’t fair.

At first, I tried making the transition fun by telling my son he was going to be the “man of the house” now.  I thought it would make him feel special and give him something to look forward to, but instead, it made him feel like he had to grow up too fast.

I had to realize that expecting him to fill the opening left by his 41-year-old father wasn’t just unrealistic, it wasn’t fair.  Just because his father and I are divorced doesn’t mean he doesn’t still get to be a kid and do kid things.  Sure, he needs to chip in a little more around the house, but he shouldn’t feel the need to be the protector or the provider.  That’s my job now.

A positive male role model was incredibly important for him.

After my divorce, I was kind of anti-male.  I wanted to prove that I was an independent woman and that I could do this whole life thing- including parenting- on my own.  While I’m certainly capable, I understood that my son still craved positive attention from male role models and that I needed to support that.

That didn’t mean I had to go out and find him a step-father.  I didn’t have to look far to find many positive male role models for him.  My father, brother-in-law, nephews, friends, and even my son’s teachers stepped up to the plate.  Although it was difficult to admit, there are some things as a female that I just don’t get.  The “guy stuff” was still important for my son to learn and I needed to respect that.

 ​He needed to see my ups and downs, but not be burdened by them.

This whole single-mom thing isn’t easy.  Life is busy enough, but taking on the work of two people can feel overwhelming at times.  At first, I tried to act like everything was totally fine in front of my son because I didn’t want to feel weak or for him to worry.

I realized that I wasn’t doing either of us any favors by hiding my feelings and that this, in fact, could be a great learning experience for him.  I started talking about age-appropriate things with him and made it clear that he could ask questions if he wanted to, and I saw the anxiety melt away from him.  This whole time I was trying to hide things so he wouldn’t worry, but it was just causing him to wonder and worry even more.

Seeing his mom go through struggles, but to push through them and become stronger because of them is only going to make him more humble, determined, and able as he grows up.

 ​Being “one of the guys” is actually pretty cool.

Before my divorce, I was kind of left out of the “guy stuff”.  I didn’t really know what I was missing.  Cars, video games, football, hockey, fishing, and yes, even fart jokes, aren’t so bad after all.

I’m still not a fan of bugs, but that’s what exterminators are for.  Watching this boy grow into a man is pretty amazing.  Seeing the wheels turn as he watches YouTube videos about how to fix things or listen to him talking about how when he grows up, he’s going to buy a McLaren P1, is incredibly special.

I would have missed all these moments if I were still a married boy mom.  I’m learning that this whole single boy mom thing is just as wonderful, if not more.  I still get to be a girly-girl, but I have a tough side now that makes me feel like a warrior.  Soft, strong, and one proud boy mom.

-Lindsay, The Divorced Mama Bear

instagram.com/thedivorcedmamabear

Choosing Thankfulness

Choosing Thankfulness…Both of my children have the flu this week. Times of illness in the life of a working single parent are tough.  Which parent is going to stay home with the kids? Depending on what your work entails, if you are the parent that stays home your entire day’s work may have to be cancelled, rearranged, rescheduled.  Are you salaried or paid by the hour?  How does your employer consider sick days for the children if you are not ill?  Do you have a good coparenting relationship and can easily discuss logistics with your ex?  Or is your ex antagonistic and passive aggressive?
All of these layers further complicate days of a child’s illness for a single parent.
It is easy to get caught up in the challenges of the logistics on days like this.  But today I am choosing to be thankful instead.  Choosing thankfulness instead of anxiety or negative thoughts.  In my case I am salaried, so I am still paid when I am absent from work.  My employer is extremely understanding and accommodating.  So even though I have to reschedule about 10-15 appointments for every day I am absent from work, really I couldn’t ask for more from an employer.  I am thankful.
My ex is of the antagonistic/passive aggressive variety, so discussing logistics for schedules can be a challenge.  But today I choose to be thankful.  Thankful that I am able to stay home with my sick children, that I am the parent that gets to do that.  That I get to make sure they are snuggled and hydrated and feeling better.  That I get to spend so much time with them.  I am thankful.
I do not have any family that lives close by to help me during events like this.  I have never had that.  It’s easy to get caught up in the “I wish I had….” thoughts.  But today I am choosing to be thankful instead.  Thankful that I have good, close friends who check in on me, us to make sure we are feeling better and that we don’t need anything.  Thankful again that I have a job that allows me to stay home with the kids.  Thankful that I have good transportation, and the means to take care of the kids even without family closely.  I am thankful.
I am thankful that I get to be mom to these two amazing, loving, talented, intelligent, funny kids.  Thankful that I get to comfort them when they are ill.  Thankful for my job.  Thankful for a supportive community.  My hope in choosing thankfulness during these challenging times is that it will help me appreciate not just the good times, but even the challenging times.  Help me appreciate today and every day I am given.
H

I Have Returned

I have returned…

My divorce became final today.  This process took over a year and a half. And it was long overdue by about 7 years. I didn’t know how I’d feel when I got word that a decision had been made. Scared?  Sad? 

Relieved. All I feel is relieved. He broke me. Not in the physical sense. But emotionally, he broke me. I am a stay at home mom who shriveled into a corner as time passed. I was never complimented or acknowledged. I spent the last two years of our “cohabitation” being essentially ignored. 

And then the divorce process was horrific. Ugly, ugly words were said. Things I will never be able to completely forget. “You did nothing.  You deserve nothing.”  Meanwhile, I was a stay a home mother, raising two children under 8, while fighting stage 4 cancer. But I did nothing. 

Those words cut like a knife. Until one day I realized, “Like hell I did nothing.”  I am raising two children. Two AMAZING human beings. I kept this house together from the moment we bought it. I played Memory while having chemo pumped through me. And I looked death in the face at least 4 times and said, “Not today.  Maybe someday, but NOT TODAY.” 

Once he left the new home that we’d built just 2.5 years earlier, I began to find my shine again.  I took control of my life. I realized I’d dulled my shine to allow him to be the star. I used to be funny. I used to be outgoing. I used to smile. I stopped being that person in order to make him happy.  I pushed all of that away during my marriage. Somehow I’d let myself believe that his needs and wants were more important than mine. And I became passive.  Quiet. “Just” a mom. 

And now that he’s gone, I’ve returned.  I walk taller. I’m proud of myself again.  I’m focused on myself and my kids and I’m thrilled to be back. I no longer dull my shine because I’m afraid to be noticed. I laugh and I engage with people and those that knew me pre divorce are now seeing who I really am. A friendly, caring, funny woman who is also realizing who SHE really is again. 

I spent a long time worrying about what I’d do after divorce. And now I know, it’s the best thing that could have ever happened to me. Even my chemo is easier now, because I feel better on the inside. I’m happy again. And I will never, EVER again allow someone to tell me I’m nothing.  I’m stronger and I’m more confident. I’m now a single mom, a stage 4 cancer survivor and a damn good woman. And I’ve never felt happier in my life. 

-Kate

Learning To Love My Time Alone

I am really learning to love my time alone…The last couple weeks, I have really started to enjoy hiking more by myself. Last summer, I would spend many nights hiking at the state park and I started to really enjoy it. Now that the weather is nice again, I have started my nightly hiking. This time, I have made a point to go by myself. I honestly am really starting to just enjoy this time.   In addition, I just bought my state park sticker for the year and I plan to try new day trips with just me…. No friends, just me.

This is a time that I can use to clear my head and my thoughts…and there is a lot going on in my head most days.   It is just peaceful and I am very content. I have many friends and can easily go hiking with another person, however I choose to do these things alone. I am not sure if its independence or I am just more content being alone.

It took me a few years after my divorce, to start doing activities alone. You basically have to start from scratch after being married for 13 years. I had to start watching TV alone, shopping alone, walking alone, eating alone… and it was hard to learn to do all of those things alone again. You have to really push yourself to do these things.

And many times you just don’t feel comfortable doing them. But then, I really started to enjoy that time alone…and then it turned into me looking forward to that time.   And now after 5 years, It is a new feeling of happiness and contentment. I could really go on and on about learning to do things alone and not feel lonely. It’s a hard thing to overcome.

There is a difference between finding things to do to fill your alone time and planning things you love to do alone. What I am saying is that… after my divorce, I would find things to do to fill my time alone. I think many of us go through that period. And now I actually plan things to do alone.

I actually plan activities to do alone. I plan nights to hike alone. I plan projects to do at home alone. I plan these activities for myself just as if I was doing them with a group of people. I actually plan them ahead of time rather than dreading doing them alone.

Church is probably one of the most rewarding things that I have learned to do alone. This year, I joined a new church and I started going by myself when I do not have my kids. This was a huge step for me. At first I thought, people are going to think I am a complete loner…and then I realized there are many people that go to church alone. I learned that this was one of the most rewarding times of my week. Honestly, I would now pick going to church alone anyday.

I have done many small home improvements at my house. Very small improvements, which mostly include painting the entire house. But I have learned that I love to find little projects and see them through by myself. I am just more gratified from starting and completing the project by myself.

I know some people find doing things alone, scary or uneasy… I get it. I still have many friends that can not walk into a restaurant alone. For some of us, like myself, it is easy to do activities, hobbies, projects, by ourselves. We are the people that would pick a 3 hour car ride by ourselves over a road trip with 5 friends.

I think I have just learned to be really content with my life and surroundings. I have no problem now choosing to do something alone over maybe with friends. It does take time…it took me a long time to get to this point, but I really enjoy it now.   I embrace this time alone.

-snarky

www.snarkydivorcedgal.com

Understanding About Why My Marriage Didn’t Work

It’s funny how years later, the past seems so much clearer.. I finally understand why my marriage didn’t work and it doesn’t make me sad.

I was going through my old pictures and cards this week.  One of the many projects, that I have put off for years, but now being stuck at home I’ve finally motivated myself… I’m sitting in my storage room in the basement by myself going thru all these old keepsakes and bins. 

I came across all my old birthday, mothers day, and anniversary cards from my ex husband.  I sat there and read them all.  I think for the first time I realized how much thought and love he put into writing those cards.  I just wish he could have communicated all those thoughts to me out loud during our marriage. Reading those cards now, it was crazy to read the paragraphs he wrote about how much he loved me.  At the time, when I was married he could not communicate many things to me. He couldn’t communicate how he felt about me or ask what we both needed in our marriage.  And at the time, him writing those thoughts once a year wasn’t what I was looking for in our marriage.  Eventually the lack of communication was one of the main reasons our marriage ended 

I sat there thinking about when did I fall out of love with him.  Those cards seemed like there was so much love between us, but in reality it wasn’t like that.  I believe that I was in love with him when we got married and started to have kids, but somewhere through the next 13 years I fell out of love.  The communication started to dwindle, we started to do activities separately, and I felt like I wasn’t the same person I was years ago. I remember feeling like I was never appreciated and that he had no input in any decisions.  We eventually had little to talk about.  I felt like I was constantly trying to get him to communicate or show any interest and he just couldn’t. 

It’s a hard thing to think about.  Did I love him in the beginning? And when did it change? What was the exact point that I just didn’t care anymore?  Marriage and relationships take constant work from both parties.  I know that by the time I realized our marriage was in trouble, I didn’t have much effort left. I honestly had already checked out.  We spent over a year in marriage counseling separate and together.  Unfortunately for my husband at the time, I learned more about myself and realized I was not in love with him anymore.  We were both trying to make changes in our relationship but we just couldn’t connect. 

Yes I could have stayed in the marriage and had a good life, but I wanted more for myself. I remember even thinking maybe I could stay and we could just be friends. Crazy thoughts.. but I’m sure many of us have had them.  I wanted to be happy.  It might sound selfish, but I couldn’t spend the next 40 some years with someone that couldn’t talk to me.. couldn’t ask about my day or be excited about the things I wanted in my life.  And as time went on, I turned to my friends for all those things.  Or I didn’t even tell him the things I was excited about….i just went through a lot of motions of being in a happy marriage, but I wasn’t. 

Looking thru all these cards now, didn’t make me sad.  I know that he wrote what he felt.  This is hard to write about because I don’t want to sound heartless but reading those cards didn’t make me sad or regretful.  I have many great memories of our time together.  It just made me understand maybe more about why our relationship didn’t work.  And it’s ok that I’m not sad about it…

-snarky 

 

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