Let me start off by making something perfectly clear. I am NOT an advocate for divorce. I think divorce sucks. However…I am a huge advocate for listening to your gut, and knowing what is the right thing to do. Not just for you…but for everyone involved.
My decision to get a divorce was not a selfish one. It took many years to finally come to terms that the relationship my husband and I had was not a healthy one, and was not making either one of us, or our children happy. I cannot control him. I cannot make him love me the way I want, support me when I need it or make me his top priority. Nor, can I give him what he wants or needs…when he himself isn’t sure of what that is.
If I had been more aware when I was 20, I would have seen the signs of a doomed relationship…but I am a romantic. Ok, it was not “romance” that drew me to him..it was simple conditioning. I was drawn to what I knew. After I started counseling…and when I really began to start looking for solutions to my problems, not excuses, I truly felt that I was going to be able to make my marriage work. As a matter of fact, when things started coming out and truths that had been concealed were finally out in the open, I romantically believed with all my heart that our relationship had no where to go but up. I remember standing in my front room crying and thinking to myself “finally it’s all out there. Everything is out in the open. Now things will finally get better.” That was hopeful thinking. Despite the problems in my marriage…the bad emotions I felt, the guilt the anger the frustration…I really didn’t want to get a divorce. I truly honestly wanted to be able to work through our issues, and come together as a strong loving couple. For a while, I really thought that was the case…and for a short period, it seemed like we were on the right track.
It wasn’t until a minor incident that the truth of the matter came out. He was NOT being honest with me. He was harboring his own negativity, doubts and frustration towards me. For whatever reason, he just could not understand how I could have done the things I had done, felt the way I felt…wanted the things I wanted. No matter how many times I explained. It was not getting through. Although he was “playing along” he was really harboring a lot of pain, and he just did not trust me.
Here’s the thing. I can’t blame him. It would be easy to say, he just didn’t love me enough or he wasn’t trying…or he didn’t want to understand. Maybe. Of course, it could also be, he just didn’t know how. That was something I learned through counseling. We all have our shit…we all have our stories that make us who we are, where we came from. Every one of us. I cannot help him. There was nothing that I could say or do that was going to make the story in his head change. I wish I could have. He’s got his issues…and they are HIS not mine.
So, despite my efforts, I could not make him be the man I needed him to be. He could not make me the woman he wanted me to be. We were different. We were just not meant for each other. Love or not, it wasn’t going to work.
That is not to say that your story has the same fate. I’m a big believer that if you truly want to make things work…things will work. In the case of marriage, it has to be two people working together. There is no healthy way for it to be one sided.
I was doing my best to be happy with the life I had. I could not make him happy. So in the end, I had to make the decision to let him go. Give myself a chance to be myself and fulfill my own hopes, and give him the same opportunity.