#ExpressLove - #SexIs - Can Divorce Be an Expression of Love?

Ansley Ansley


Roland Hulme is our resident Devil's Advocate over at SexIs and he has often found himself under fire for his views on everything from monogamy to how men feel about what makes them sexy. Roland has a strong voice and an even sharper wit about him and he always manages to find a way to drive his point home. This week is no exception.



Roland posted a simple comment, or at least what he thought would be an inspiring comment, on Facebook. The message simply read:

"The greatest gift a father can give his children is to love their mother.” - Anonymous

Moments later he would be hit with a few comments from friends telling him he was being judgmental and asking if he thought they were "bad" parents. It took Roland a moment to realize what they all had in common - they were divorced from the mother(s) of their children.

This one simple Facebook comment begged the question: "Can divorce be an expression of love?".

Well, maybe. Is it better to admit that the relationship isn't going to work and separate amicably with mutual respect while remaining friends throughout the child's life? Or is it better to stay together and stick it out even if you are merely tolerating each other?

To read Roland's entire article on the matter (and show some comment love), you can find it here!



- Do you think Roland's comment was innocent and shouldn't have drawn the ire it did?

- Can divorce be an expression of love?

- Do you think it's possible to remain friends with an ex for the sake of the children?
05/01/2012
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Femme Mystique Femme Mystique
In ways, I feel like my ex divorcing me was an expression of love. Sure, there were selfish motives for her too, because she'd found someone else, but I think she was also aware that she couldn't give me what I needed. When we split up, it gave me the space to grow as a person and allowed me to find someone who is a much better fit for me. I feel like divorcing me was a blessing in disguise.
05/01/2012
MandaB MandaB
I have a good friend who is no longer married to the father of her child after realizing that while they were amazing friends, they weren't so amazing at being partners. They are amazing co-parents together though. They go out to meals together. Every year for mothers day he takes them to a fancy breakfast. Being that they live near each other, if their daughter is craving some mama cuddles while she's at dads, mom is welcome to come over to provide those snuggles.
Love comes in many forms, it doesn't always have to be romantic. I have no doubt that this couple has shown love for each other and their daughter by divorcing.
05/01/2012
unfulfilled unfulfilled
I think it's completely possible. It would be hard to admit that the relationship is failing but are you doing you and your children any justice by playing "marriage" just so mommy and daddy can be living together.
05/01/2012
Lucky21 Lucky21
Oh I totally think that divorce can be an expression of love. That's the easy part to answer. I think the quote "The greatest gift a father can give his children is to love their mother.” - Anonymous is total BS and insulting to fathers. I know enough mothers and or fathers out there who are completely unfit and really abusive and that they rely on the children rely on the other parent, and in reference to this quote, people who rely on their fathers. From my personal experience, I've seen more people who's fathers are not in there lives in any sort of productive way. Though I would never deny a child the love of there mother, but speaking as a father and seeing the gain that my child has by me being in her life, I would never give that up.
05/01/2012
Ansley Ansley
Quote:
Originally posted by Lucky21
Oh I totally think that divorce can be an expression of love. That's the easy part to answer. I think the quote "The greatest gift a father can give his children is to love their mother.” - Anonymous is total BS and insulting to fathers. I ... More
I think you may have misunderstood Roland, just as his friends did.

Parents must have good relationships with each other in order to show children how to behave in their own romantic relationships.

For instance, I grew up in a home without a father. My mother never dated. She never interacted with men past just being friends with them. I had never seen her kiss, smile, laugh, hug or horse around with a man she was interested in. Because of this, when it came time to become intimate or show affection in my relationships I had a really hard time doing it.

It took me forever to even become a little bit forward in my desires and sometimes I still find myself closed up like a flower instead of lavishing him in attention and affection.
05/01/2012
Ropey Ropey
Quote:
Originally posted by Ansley


Roland Hulme is our resident Devil's Advocate over at SexIs and he has often found himself under fire for his views on everything from monogamy to how men feel about what makes them sexy. Roland has a strong voice and an even sharper wit ... More
Divorce is not usually a good thing for the children. Unless some form of abuse is present for a parent or for a child in the situation, divorce will still mess with the children, even if it is for the better.

I could not have imagined my parents being more different, they divorced when I was 6, and I am indeed glad that they did.

I'm not sure if it was done out of love, but in fact suspect it was done out of contempt for each other.

It did mess with me and many of my feelings/reactions to feelings today. I am still very child-like in my emotions, and I attribute much of this to my parent's divorce and its effect on me. It made me always feel like a child. My parents never tried to "buy" me off, but they did say hurtful things about each other, they were often spiteful to one another, and they and their spouses would mock the other pair (both of my parents got remarried). I think it really screws with you if you don't know exactly who to trust or believe, or who is looking out for you vs. trying to support their own interests.

I think as adults, if we are grown up enough to have a relationship with someone, get married, and have children (not necessarily in that order), we should be grown up enough to get over ourselves and at least ACT appropriately when our children are around. Suck up your pride and at least be civil.

I know that feelings are hurt, egos are bruised, etc, but really parents, get over yourselves and try to make a better life for your children!!!

If you do divorce out of love, then prove it to us!!!
05/01/2012
Nirelan Nirelan
Quote:
Originally posted by Ansley


Roland Hulme is our resident Devil's Advocate over at SexIs and he has often found himself under fire for his views on everything from monogamy to how men feel about what makes them sexy. Roland has a strong voice and an even sharper wit ... More
I got divorced 4 years ago, we're still together and better than we were when we were married....It's strange to most people but it works for us, and we don't really plan on getting married again....things are good like they are, why ruin it?
05/02/2012
Chilipepper Chilipepper
Quote:
Originally posted by Ropey
Divorce is not usually a good thing for the children. Unless some form of abuse is present for a parent or for a child in the situation, divorce will still mess with the children, even if it is for the better.

I could not have imagined my ... More
My parents did a divorce out of love - they knew that they kept feeding each other's self-destruction and it got to the point in which they finally had to break it off. Things calmed down in the households. My parents actually became very good friends by not being married. Thy worked on their own crap and did not let it interfere with raising my brother and me. Their second spouses did all they could to poison the friendship and bad mouth the ex-spouse, but neither of them could get in the way of my parents' honesty and friendship. I'm glad they did divorce. It was hellacious living with them fighting all the time while they were married.

It still came as a surprise when Dad visited us my senior year in high school and my parents fell in love again.
05/02/2012
Jaimes Jaimes
My parents divorced when I was 12. I am the oldest of three kids, and when it happened, my mom and I became incredibly close. I could see that the woman I called mom just wasn't who she really was when she was with my dad. And he couldn't be the man he wanted to be when he was with her. In the end,
I know it was the right choice, although I still feel a great deal of guilt and sympathy for my dad, because he still loved my mom fiercely when they separated. The go-betweens got ugly after that, but it opened the door for my mom to find the man that I now love and respect just as much, and at times, even more, as my own father.

At 14, I was toasting them at their wedding, and telling her new husband that he was the reason my mom glows, laughs, and smiles whenever she is near him, and that this new family they are building, with all 7 of us, was the greatest gift any loving child could ask for.

In regards to Roland's facebook comment, I think he is absolutely right. And I say that because LOVE has so many definitions. Even if parents are no longer married, a man can still express love for the mother of his children. He can do that with respect, he can do that with patience and support, and he can do that with friendship if he so chooses. But it's important for children to see compassion and caring between the adults in their lives, especially their parents. While we adults have all the fancy vocabulary and natural tendency to label each and every circumstance or feeling, for children, it all still boils down to one thing: love. So no matter what it's form, it is important for children to see what they feel is love between their parents.
05/03/2012
Femme Mystique Femme Mystique
Quote:
Originally posted by Ropey
Divorce is not usually a good thing for the children. Unless some form of abuse is present for a parent or for a child in the situation, divorce will still mess with the children, even if it is for the better.

I could not have imagined my ... More
I get what you're trying to say, but it sounds like it's not the divorce that hurt you, but rather the way the adults acted. I know that saying bad things about the former spouse is common, but that didn't make it justified. I have never said an unkind word about my ex in front of our son. In fact, we go to his events for school together and are always pleasant to each other in his presence. We didn't make sense together and finding people who we could be happy with while remaining pleasant to each other has been very important for our son, I believe.
05/03/2012
Ansley Ansley
This is all very interesting. I think the outlook on divorce has changed drastically in the last ten years and that no people are choosing to not get married at all just to avoid the possibility of divorce.

It's sad. I mean I'm not even sure where I stand on marriage or divorce or any of it when I get down to the heart of it but at the same time I feel comforted by the ability to do both. It's a weird paradox in my head.

That being said, the hardest thing my mother ever did was divorce my father and I think if they'd stayed together one of them would have wound up dead. They were just so volatile together and it didn't get any better after the divorce.

I think no matter how you slice it, it's an incredibly difficult decision to make.
05/03/2012
Beck Beck
I didn't really read what this was about, but I wanted to share what happened with my mother and father.

My parents met in High school about the age of 14 (mother) and 16 (father). They begun dating right away and my mother became pregnant and gave birth to me before High school was over. She took off with my dad to Las Vegas instead of sticking around to graduate. They got married and continued the family adding my sister to the the mix two years behind me.

Years later...
My mother was working at this factory job working a lot of overtime when she met this guy. She ended up cheating on my father with him. My dad forgave her and stuck by her side because he didn't want his family broken up like his family was growing up. But a few years later at another job, my mother is working a lot with another guy. And starts cheating on my father again. Only this time my dad goes through with the divorce. They stay apart for about 6 months and in the meantime my dad seem to be moving on; however she turned out to be a gold digger. (Though she was looking in the wrong place. The last thing we had was money.)

Then they (mom and dad) secretly started dating again and slowly but surely they moved back in together. They have been together ever since which has been 7 years now. They both have done things in their relationship that they wish they didn't, but overall they love each other. Divorce was the best thing that happened to them aside from my sister and I.
05/03/2012
Badass Badass
Quote:
Originally posted by Ansley
I think you may have misunderstood Roland, just as his friends did.

Parents must have good relationships with each other in order to show children how to behave in their own romantic relationships.

For instance, I grew up in a home ... More
I know I'm gonna get slack saying this.. but I really agree with Stormy on this.

My mom and dad were married for 31 years before he passed away. I know what I want and what to look for in a man because of the way my father interacted with my mother. My dad spoiled me rotten with gifts and toys, but the best and most long lasting gifts he ever gave me are the memories of him hugging and kissing my mom in our kitchen, memories of him and her dancing together at weddings, and me holding both their hands walking through disneyland and looking up to see them eye locked in this.. "I love you so much" kind of way.
Because I saw him do it, I always knew a man would do it for me, and not from movies which are fake, but from real life. I have always had an open heart, which sometimes wasn't the best thing to have, but with my current lover is has brought me all the happiness I could have hoped for.

I admire my dad for being loyal to my momma, and being the best husband he could be to her. And for me, the most loving thing he ever did for me was giving me that example of how a man should treat a woman. Or a spouse treat their partner.

But, if a couple CANNOT get along at all, I suppose it then would be a better gift to their child to divorce and stop them from seeing endless fights and hostility.
05/03/2012
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Quote:
Originally posted by Ansley


Roland Hulme is our resident Devil's Advocate over at SexIs and he has often found himself under fire for his views on everything from monogamy to how men feel about what makes them sexy. Roland has a strong voice and an even sharper wit ... More
I think AMICABLE and loving divorce can be a sincere expression of love. When a person recognizes that love isn't enough to salvage a relationship then the most loving thing you can do is let your partner go in a loving manner. No fighting over assets, or using the children as weapons against your former partner.
Sometimes just saying, "I will let you go with love and remain mature throughout this painful process. I will talk to you and, more importantly, I will listen to you. We will work out what is best for both of us and wish each other the best that life has to offer," is the most loving thing you could ever do for your former partner or your children.
This isn't an easy process or easy to live each day but if you allow yourself to grieve the loss of what could have been you will eventually be able to work through to what might be in a natural and loving manner.
No child wants to be the reason their parents stayed together if the parents are miserable. Any child knows when their parents are unhappy and it's not a loving thing to force them to live with it day after day...I know how it feels and so do children who live on the front lines of any armed conflict.
If there is nothing left to be worked out, compromised or whatever then the most loving thing you can do is work as a couple for the best interests of your children...and remain mature through the whole process. This means getting professional help for some people to learn how to allow your partner to go and build a life (with your kids) and how to balance that with building your own life (with your kids).
Though my parents are still together there were times when it would have taken an act of incredible selfless love on both their parts to either learn how to be mature and healthy or just walk the hell away! Since Sigel is a child who survived an incredibly horrifying divorce and subsequent abuse he wanted to be sure I understood that this wouldn't happen when we had kids...we would be mature in our dealings or all hell would break loose! As a child who often prayed for a divorce I knew what he meant and agreed...we have a plan in place should we decide that we no longer can justify being together (for whatever reason). We take out our plan and discuss it often, it might seem self defeating but in reality it allows us to feel secure and calms us down if we are all 'het' up. We know that if we could work this horribly painful compromise out when we are super happy then we can work anything out.
05/03/2012
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Quote:
Originally posted by MandaB
I have a good friend who is no longer married to the father of her child after realizing that while they were amazing friends, they weren't so amazing at being partners. They are amazing co-parents together though. They go out to meals together. ... More
Now that must be an amazing place to grow up! Here's hoping that they can manage to continue this through their daughter's whole life.
05/03/2012
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Quote:
Originally posted by Lucky21
Oh I totally think that divorce can be an expression of love. That's the easy part to answer. I think the quote "The greatest gift a father can give his children is to love their mother.” - Anonymous is total BS and insulting to fathers. I ... More
Perhaps it would have been better to say, "The greatest gift a father can give his children is to treat their Mother in a loving manner." This allows for that love of the woman, the love of the fact that she is the mother of their child(ren), and allows the child to see his/her father treating the most important woman in his/her life (biological mother or not!) in a loving manner.
05/03/2012
Crystal1 Crystal1
I think that admitting you chose the wrong person and divorcing so that both people can have a chance to find happiness is an expression of love.
05/04/2012
Snozzberries Snozzberries
I haven't even read the article yet but this thread is amazing and eye-opening. I may have to wait for a bit before reading the article because this thread is so deep. I admire both sides of the debate and how everyone expressed what they meant without sniping other peoples' opinions.
05/04/2012
Total posts: 19
Unique posters: 14