I really hate to ask this question, but it's something that's been bothering me for a while and I know you ladies are so very, very wise.
It seems like marriages all around me are failing. My main confusion is with the marriages that have lasted for 15, 20, 30 or more years. Spouces are asking "out of the blue" for a divorce. This worries me. I'm worried for my future and for those around me. It's very troubling. What causes someone, after many years of love and building a life together, to just want to leave it all? I dont want to be sitting in my rocking chair at 50 and have my best friend ask me for a divorce for "no aparent reason." I would be crushed. Now, even though many divorced spouces say "out of the blue" and "no aparent reason," I know people don't leave happiness for the unknown. I know there has to be a reason. Maybe they've been fake happy and hiding it? Maybe they were waiting for the kids to grow up? Midlife crisis? I just dont know. Anyone care to enlighten me?
I'm sure some of you are going through this right now and I dont mean to stir up any ill feelings or pain. I'm sorry if I caused this. If you have been through this, do you regret the marriage? If you could go back and not marry, would you?
Thanks for the help!
I'll do my best to answer honestly w/out giving away too many personal details. My husband and I have been married for 10 years. (In fact we celebrated ? our 10th anniversary this past week. *wry grin*)
I can promise you that there is no "out of the blue" or "no apparent reason" for us. For those outside our marriage - even our close friends - it was a shock, yes. And they all wanted to know "what happened - you guys were the perfect couple".
And even for us, we still love each other. We still live together (although as roommates, not as husband and wife). We are having a hard time moving forward with the divorce part because we're good friends and we care. But we are not going to be "married" in the true sense ever again. It's just a matter of one or the other of us making the choice to move on first. And right now neither of us wants to deal with that pain.
But things build up. Things happen. Communication erodes. One person changes and moves a different direction and the other person can't/won't go the same way.
Anyone who says "out of the blue" about their marriage falling apart is (IMO) in denial. Even my husband admits this; he has told me before that he fooled himself into thinking everything would be ok if we just went on the way we were, but deep inside he knew it was just a matter of time before I said "enough".
It's different for everyone. But no one - NO ONE - can know what goes on inside a relationship except the two people involved.
Maybe they were waiting for the kids to grow up? Midlife crisis?
I'm 26 and since I graduated high school, several of my friend's parents have divorced. I'm sure none of them were "just out of the blue", and I know with a few of them they had known fow many years that once the kids were gone, so were they.
There's no reason to live in fear of something that might or might not happen.
My recent philosophy on this is: if someone else wants him or he wants someone else, so be it.
Alot of people "think" it's better with someone else and then they find out that it really isn't.
I really don't care either way. I don't plan on divorcing my husband, but I sometimes wish I'd never married him.
Oh BTW, we dated for 8 yrs before we got married and have been married for 15 yrs.
One thing I've learned, no matter how much you think you know someone, you really don't (at least that's my experience).
Photo - thanks for your open and honest response. I'm sorry your going through this. I do agree that anyone who says it's out of the blue is in denial (or the other person must be really good at hiding pain and resentment). Your post did clarify some things. Like, communication; it's so important to keep the communication lines flowing and to be honest with your partner.
And, in my relationship it's just me and him and I'll probably see the end coming, if it does. And, we will both change throughout our lives but it's important to accept (or at least tolerate) those changes and love the person despite it. Well, I know you didn't actually say all that... guess I read between the lines.
It's not like I'm "living in fear." I'm just approaching a crossroads and in the back of my mind I'm thinking "is this going to be forever or will it be like such and such who seemed so happy but divorced after all those years?" And just trying to make sence of it all.
I mean... Gosh, you know, it was almost a rule: if you made it past the 7 year itch you were gold. But now... oy.
Just so you know where I'm coming from, I've been married for 21 years.
When you are new in your relationship or marriage, it is really hard to imagine that you will feel anything other than the deep love and happiness that you feel at that moment. The passion is strong and the connection is strong.
But, time takes its toll on those feelings and passions. You start a family and kids take a lot of your time. While it is all good, there isn't as much time to be just a couple. Your energy is spent on taking care of kids, working outside of the home, working inside the home, and just trying to get everything done. It is just a natural thing, but some people look at it as no longer being in love or that something is horribly wrong. But, it doesn't have to be that way. You have to plan to be that couple, go on dates, get a babysitter, or just spend a little time together. Honestly, my husband and I struggled a lot about 5-6 years ago. Now, we are more settled. I think when we finally sat down and talked, we realized that the other person was trying to do the best that they could, but there is just so little time.
It doesn't always work out for everyone because people change and feelings change. But, to stay together does take a lot of work.
All of that said... I wouldn't worry about it because you'll miss the really good time you're having right now. You have to meet whatever challenges come... when they come.
This time, I'm going to be stronger, I'm not giving in. - Rudimental
I have never been married so maybe I have no right to answer this but I will anyway(hmm maybe being opinionated is why I have never had a real relationship)! I do not believe in marriage. Being married is to me like only allowing yourself one friend.
I actually don't see a problem with that... If I only had one friend, it wouldn't bother me.
Now of course it wasn't a marriage but I had a friend of 20 years. We broke apart. The reasoning I see it is I changed and grew my life in a different direction and she had difficulties with that.
The person I am today is not the same person I was when I started dating my husband. He has also changed. I think you are able to grow together as you grow older and you do have to accept the changes your partner may go through and know that they will accept the changes you go through. I know we've only been married for 2 years but my husband and I talk every day, we hug every day and we talk about various things that each of us would like to accomplish in the future. I don't expect my husband to be the same man in 5 years that he is today and I don't think he would expect the same of me.
I also told my husband that when we got married that there was no way out of this, he is stuck. I do believe that if we have issues in the future, that we will work them out.
You can't out-exercise poor eating habits.
I'm getting married in 75 hours (exactly lol), and while there's always a possibility of divorce, I'm not going to worry about it. I plan to be the best wife I can be, in any given situation, to be loyal and honest and make any decisions with my husband's best interests at heart (as well as my own...). That's all anyone CAN DO, imo, in a marriage. But even doing that, there's never a 100% guarantee that a marriage will last forever...but at least I would know I did my best and gave it everything I had.
I'm watching several friends go through this right now and it is heart breaking. Many of them are really trying to work things out with counseling too. I don't think any divorce is "out of the blue". I just think people are private about things of this nature and don't go telling everyone about the problems they are having.
I think a lot of people don't view marriage and love the way people used to. Divorce is much more socially acceptable then it used to be. IMO some people fail to realize that love isn't just about butterflies and feelings it's about a mutual commitment to each other.
DH and I talked a lot before we got married about the possibility of couples counseling if we hit a rough spot. We are both committed to working through things and not giving up. I'm very careful about communicating things on a daily basis. I think communication is key. I also think that once we have kids, I'd like to instate a "date night" without children. I think couple time is very important. I think it'd make us better parents too.
Also remember, that for every marriage that fails, there is one that lasts. There's always a positive side to everything. Try to look to those couples to see what they are doing differently.
My parents were still married until they passed and my in-laws are still married. Have times always been wonderful for them? No, but they worked through things. Marriage is hard work, but it's rewarding.
EDIT: I also wanted to say that growing in separate areas doesn't always mean growing apart. Dh and I have interests that the other doesn't share and I encourage this. We both need time away from the other. Yes, we take an interest in hearing about these interests, but we don't necessarily want to join in. I think a healthy marriage is one that gives both parties the freedom to be themselves.
speaking just from my personal experience- here's what I know.
I am very unhappy. My husband doesn't let me talk/won't listen to any problems. He refuses marriage counseling. If and or when I leave him- he will think it is out of the blue- even though I've tried to get through to him many times.
Sometimes a person is unhappy for a very long time and doesn't say anything out of fear or whatever their reasoning may be and finally they come to a breaking point and they just can't do it anymore.