Life After Divorce/LTR

Chilipepper Chilipepper
I'll devirginize this category.

I went straight from living at home to being married, and now I'm divorcing after ten years and have no clue on what being a single adult is. I spent the first six months in a FWB affair and crying a lot. I'm impatient to get out of this grief process, which just makes it worse. So I'm chasing my tail a lot.

Any divorced folks or those out of long term relationships have stories to share?
07/06/2010
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El-Jaro El-Jaro
I spent time being single after some 9 month to 1 1/2 years. After the usual self-doubt and wondering what went wrong, you have to know when to say when to the negative feelings. Negative thinking isn't helpful and actually habit forming.

Try finding things to do that you couldn't do in a relationship. If you can, get up and go out at 9pm. Make something you and only you like to eat. If there's something your last partner didn't like that you did, do it as much as possible!

Have fun!
07/06/2010
fatesrelease fatesrelease
Quote:
Originally posted by Chilipepper
I'll devirginize this category.

I went straight from living at home to being married, and now I'm divorcing after ten years and have no clue on what being a single adult is. I spent the first six months in a FWB affair and crying a ... More
Not me personally but my mother was with my father for over 25 years and just recently got divorced because he came out. I always thought my mom would be happier without my dad and I really do think she is. She keeps herself active by doing fun things with friends, joined a book club, and is busy organizing her new apartment. I'm sure it's still a struggle for her but she is doing just fine now. At first it was really upsetting for her as you can imagine but she is a strong woman and will do just fine.

Wishing you the best. *hugs*
07/07/2010
scissormetimbers scissormetimbers
Quote:
Originally posted by Chilipepper
I'll devirginize this category.

I went straight from living at home to being married, and now I'm divorcing after ten years and have no clue on what being a single adult is. I spent the first six months in a FWB affair and crying a ... More
I was in five year long relationship with my first love. It ended badly when came out to him as bisexual. The relationship that followed began as a FWB affair as well. It became a relationship, but a flimsy one that only lasted six months. The following eight months was taken up by another FWB, who got my hopes up for a actual relationship--but reneged three days later. I've found that I tend get over one person by getting under someone else (quite literally) and its a really deadening process. I'd say let yourself grieve. Time heals most things-- if we could all just be patient enough.

I think I like using the time that I used to spend on former(in)significant others pampering or taking care of myself. I go to the gym, get my hair/nails done. And focus on revising and re-visioning myself into something better than I am. Also, I think indulging in things you couldn't do before (i.e being more open about being bi for me) helps take the edge off things.

I feel like I just rambled...
08/05/2010
Chilipepper Chilipepper
Quote:
Originally posted by scissormetimbers
I was in five year long relationship with my first love. It ended badly when came out to him as bisexual. The relationship that followed began as a FWB affair as well. It became a relationship, but a flimsy one that only lasted six months. The ... More
You're definitely not rambling. Stories need to be told, and I appreciate you sharing your experience.
08/05/2010
El-Jaro El-Jaro
Quote:
Originally posted by Chilipepper
You're definitely not rambling. Stories need to be told, and I appreciate you sharing your experience.
agree
08/05/2010
Lady of the Lake Lady of the Lake
The father of my kids and I separated exactly 1 year ago. My situation might be a little different because things weren't good between us for the larger part of the time we were together; the last year we were practically living separate lives under the same roof. When he left it was a relief more than anything, but I was by no means ready to jump into anything new. (not that there are a lot of options around here, lol)
My main thing has been (besides the enormous amount of energy going into raising my young children) really getting to know myself apart from being with another person. Like JR said, Have fun!!

Only in the past couple of months have I even felt the least desire to get involved with anyone new, but I have started looking. At this point I am very clear on what I want in a relationship (because I do want one!), and I will not budge from those preferences. I certainly settled for less than what I deserved and wanted in the past, and I am determined not to make those mistakes again. Part of that is what brought me here, because there are days and nights when I feel incredibly lonely. I think the bottom line is to really be there for yourself, get clear with yourself and your desires, let yourself experience all the emotions, but at the same time don't spiral into negativity.

How exciting for you- you get to really know YOU!
08/20/2010
Chilipepper Chilipepper
Quote:
Originally posted by Lady of the Lake
The father of my kids and I separated exactly 1 year ago. My situation might be a little different because things weren't good between us for the larger part of the time we were together; the last year we were practically living separate lives ... More
Mine's not too different from yours - I had a slow simmering hate for my husband since about the third year of marriage onward. Our marriage was celibate on top of being emotionally abusive. I thought I had to live with my 'mistake' of marrying the wrong person. I finally reached the bottom of my reserves and decided that he had to go. It was more heartbreaking than I thought it would be, but I don't regret it.

The grief process is near over. I want to join the human race again as an active participant.
08/21/2010
NightNight NightNight
I don't have a lot to relate about this as far as "coming out of a relationship" except I'm excited for you and what you're doing

I had to reenter the world after becoming a suicidal recluse but I was helped by my now-husband to a great degree. I don't know how I could have started the journey without someone else's help.
08/21/2010
jennydanger jennydanger
lol @ "slow simmering hate"
That is is EXACTLY how I would describe the relationship with my ex-husband.

I was just 21 when we married, he is 7 yrs older than me. I said 'yes' because I thought no one would ever want me. Talk about insecure! shortly after I was pregnant and wanting out. But I thought I had to make it work.

so fast forward a decade, I was at my limit. I hated the air he breathed, his voice, the sight of him. HATED IT. I even stopped letting him come to family gatherings by saying I was just going for a quick visit to my moms or whatever.

We decided to split some time just after the holidays, 3 years ago. I immediately began an affair with a very sexy latino restaurant owner in town [regrettably he was married, and I didnt find out for quite some time]. I had not previously even thought about this man that way, but it was like a switch was flipped inside me.

The affair lasted well over a year and let me tell you, I need it. It kept me from seeking 'validation' of sorts from random dudes, I didnt go out all the time to clubs/bars. I wasnt focused on finding someone. We just saw each other once a week for sex, talked some times over a glass of wine after hours, flirted secretly in public. It was fun. And it filled a need. I also was able to take time to deal with a broken marriage [we had 2 kids together] and all that goes with it. I spent many nights at home crying, wasting time online, reading books, long baths, baking cookies and that kind of thing.

But then I began having feelings for a friend of mine. He lived out of state and would come visit every other month or so. We got involved but there was no 'relationship', just 'friends'. After a while I told him how i felt, that I was beginning to love him, but he didnt want to be in a relationship with anyone. I hated that. But I couldnt change how I felt.

Things pretty much stayed the same for a while- he would visit for the weekend, I would be in heaven, he would go back home, I would be in hell. Then last spring he started missing me when he was home, and he didnt want to leave after the week end was up. Summer rolled around and I asked him to move here. He did.

Now we have Lola [baby!] and are planning a small wedding.

But it hasnt been a bed of roses. We have had our fair share of issues, mostly from me dealing with all my baggage, and he has been great about it. But I know I wouldnt have been ready for this a year ago. I needed time. So take time to just 'be'. Do the things you have always wanted to, the thing syou have put off for a long time. Find out who you are now. And dont jump into a new relationship, keep thing slight for a while. And that is hard to do sometimes I guess.

It takes a long time to sort things out from my experience. Where ever you find yourself along the way is an ok place to be. Thats really all I can say.
08/21/2010
UrNaughtyaAngel UrNaughtyaAngel
*smiling* what a great discussion. I love everyones honesty. I have never been married and honestly I think I am afraid of commitment afraid of choosing the wrong guy. I know I am jumping way ahead of myself since first I have to get to start dating but even so I do not want to get to attach to no one.

And I agree with everyone enjoy spending time with yourself and discovering new things about yourself. You will see next year you will look back and see how far you have come. Hugs

PS
I am still learning things. What is FWB ?
09/17/2010
Chilipepper Chilipepper
Quote:
Originally posted by UrNaughtyaAngel
*smiling* what a great discussion. I love everyones honesty. I have never been married and honestly I think I am afraid of commitment afraid of choosing the wrong guy. I know I am jumping way ahead of myself since first I have to get to start dating ... More
FWB - Friends with benefits. Having a casual sexual relationship with a friend and not being officially together. Literally in my case - the guy was my best friend in high school a decade-and-a-half ago. Neither of us could keep it 'friendly' so he ended it without telling me. (That hurt, too, on top of my divorce.)

I hope we're not scaring you into not looking! I admit to being a sheltered romantic idiot who didn't notice that something was bad for me. Deciding to be emotionally healthy is the first step, and going through the process to get that way is next. I'm told that once a person achieves good emotional health, they attract others who are also healthy and are 'on the same page'. At least that's my own program. ^_^
09/17/2010
UrNaughtyaAngel UrNaughtyaAngel
Quote:
Originally posted by Chilipepper
FWB - Friends with benefits. Having a casual sexual relationship with a friend and not being officially together. Literally in my case - the guy was my best friend in high school a decade-and-a-half ago. Neither of us could keep it 'friendly' ... More
*smacking forehead* Oh but ofcourse FWB would mean Friends with benefits. I can't believe I couldn't make it out.

Oh you are all not scaring me. I have always been afraid of commitment but like I said I love everyones honesty. Unfortunately life is not always perfect and I love that you made this post saying what you are going through and feeling and that others have chimed it.

I agree with you completely. Once one is truly happy with oneself it will be easy to attract others with the same mind frame. We just got to take one day at a time.
09/29/2010
Dame Demi Dame Demi
Quote:
Originally posted by Chilipepper
I'll devirginize this category.

I went straight from living at home to being married, and now I'm divorcing after ten years and have no clue on what being a single adult is. I spent the first six months in a FWB affair and crying a ... More
I'm surprised there's not a "Divorce" category in the "Relationships" section.

I've told parts of my story here; I've been telling it for so long, I don't even remember who knows what.

My divorce was finalized yesterday morning. There is more pain in that statement than I can express.

I also went directly from living with my parents to getting married. I met a guy online when I was 21, back in 1993, before dating sites and such; we started talking while playing a game. He actually lived only an hour and a half or so from me, but was in TX in the Army. He proposed to me on the phone after 2 weeks. The next week, he sent me his Mother's engagement ring. Four months after we started talking, I flew down to meet him. I married him 10 days later. I'm an only child, who had just finished her third year of college as an honors' student; Mom & Dad weren't happy.

I was young, and stupid, and that wasn't the way I wanted to get married. I wanted to finish school first, let my parents get to know him--do it the 'right' way. But he felt he'd been abandoned by everyone he'd ever loved, so the night before our wedding, I vowed to prove to him there was someone who would never leave, and that he deserved to be loved. I don't remember my wedding vows; all I remember of my wedding is thinking "My parents are going to KILL me!" But I never forgot the promise I made the night before. I risked everything I had, left behind everything I knew, because he needed me to. Despite everything, I don't regret it. It was worth it.

Against the odds, I was married almost exactly 17 1/2 years.

It wasn't all roses. We both screwed up, him repeatedly, me dramatically; but we got through it together. I loved being married. We decided not to have children, because we were so happy with our life the way it was. We literally never entered or left a room without kissing each other; never ended a phone call, conversation, or went to bed without saying "I love you." We had stupid jokes and games, young-kid lovey stuff, and we carried them on around others, in public, without embarrassment. We did things together; we also had different interests. We had mutual friends; we retained some of our friends from childhood. He left the military, got a good job, started making decent money; I worked the majority of our marriage, but stopped a few times because I thought it made our quality of living better. We built a house, bought a dog, and were happy. His job got better; we had nice cars, took 7 or 8 cruises, he replaced my original engagement ring with something...more eye-catching. I spent a lot of money; too much. But I thought it was normal; while growing up, and from talking to my friends, it seemed like husbands were always upset because their wives spent too much money. I would binge-spend, and I knew that was a problem; but I always found what we needed, and I don't think he was ever deprived of something he wanted because of me. I may be wrong; I did spend way too much money.

4 1/2 years ago, he met a woman (yes, online) who was married, lived halfway across the country, had a house, a good job, even several pets--a happy life, she said. She and her husband were polyamorous. My husband approached me about talking to her. We'd played around together with others a couple times before; so I wasn't thrilled with the idea, but I was willing to keep an open mind. I just asked them to give me time to learn, understand, catch up. They didn't. She came to meet him in July. When she left, he said he'd talk to her, but only see her a few times a year. But then she had him visit in August. Then my husband told me she and her husband were having problems. I knew at that moment where things were heading. She divorced her husband (her second divorce by age 31, I later found out) and moved here in November. He lived with me 4 days a week and her 3 days a week at first. After 3 or 4 weeks, I told him to get out. He came over once a week for 'date night' with me for awhile, not sure how long. One night I said "Wait, I'm your WIFE. I'm not the one you should be DATING!" He agreed, and moved back in; he saw her a few times a week. I tried to get to know her, invited her into my home 3 times, cooked her dinner; then she called that off. The next two years were hell, I think for everybody involved. We fought constantly and quite dramatically--think suicide threats, guns, cops--yeah, it was awful. We weren't raised like that, we didn't act that way, you know? Between shrinks and painkillers, I was drugged to zombiedom, which is probably the only thing that got me through the pain. He'd been asking me to have sex with other guys for years, but I never wanted to. But I'd dropped 30 lbs., mostly from vomiting from stress, looked half-decent, and started sleeping with anything I could find hoping to make my husband happy. But he said I was unbearable to be around because I was always drugged up; he was right. He moved out about 2 years after it started.
12/11/2010
Dame Demi Dame Demi
Quote:
Originally posted by Chilipepper
I'll devirginize this category.

I went straight from living at home to being married, and now I'm divorcing after ten years and have no clue on what being a single adult is. I spent the first six months in a FWB affair and crying a ... More
I was living alone for the first time ever. It was awful. I tried going back to work, but I couldn't handle coming home to an empty house. I used to love to cook, but cooking for myself depressed the hell out of me. I spent a year sitting on the couch with the dog, no TV, no books, no music, just waiting for each day to end. Sadly, that's not an exaggeration. Year three was quieter, but lonely. My husband still supported me, still let me have full access to the bank account. My spending got worse, probably from trying to fill a void or some crap. My friends started coming to the conclusion I was too drugged up to want to be around; that's when I realized how bad it was. I ended year 3 still alone, and trying to quit popping the pills.

I succeeded with the pills around the beginning of year 4--by myself, the hard way; but I've never even been tempted to go back. Some of my friends saw me coming back and were happy; others...I still don't know. They've still never told me what I did that was so horrible it could ruin 10 years of friendship. I didn't hurt anyone; I was just fucked up for a year and a half. So I kicked the drugs, and my husband didn't come home because he said I spent too much. So I tried fixing that, too. It got better; I relapsed sometimes, but made some progress. I asked him what I had to do--I fixed the sex, I fixed the drugs; if I stopped spending and got a job, would he come back and try to rebuild? He told me loved me, he didn't see himself spending the rest of his life with her, but their relationship would have to end 'organically.'

Basically, nothing I did, or could do, would be 'enough.' When it ended he'd come back, maybe; but there was nothing I could do to make him give her up and come back to me and fight for our marriage. He claims it wasn't her; he said he saw himself growing old with me. But before her, we had some problems, but we never even discussed, mentioned, talked about spitting up. He never told me he was unhappy; on the contrary, he was always telling me how happy he was with me. I don't know what happened, honestly. It wasn't her, he said; he loved me more, he said. But he wouldn't give her up to try to save our marriage; I was fighting for it every day, but he only noticed the times I failed. I couldn't do 'enough' because he couldn't tell me what 'enough' was. He was still supporting me. It was now 4 years, he was supporting me, he'd been living with her and supporting me for 2, but he never asked me for a divorce. Last year, in the spring, he'd say things like "I don't want to be without you, but I don't know if I have a choice." Then, at the beginning of July, he filed for divorce. He didn't discuss it with me first; he didn't actually tell me in advance. He texted me on the way back. "I'm late for work because I had to go to Denton." "Why did you have to go to Denton?" "To file some papers." "To file what papers?" "I opened a case for a divorce proceeding." "You filed for divorce?" "No, I just opened a case; it's nothing set in stone." Even then, he couldn't even say it--text it!

I received an anonymous letter maybe 2 weeks later telling me the other woman was pregnant. Much confusion and turmoil ensued. He said he didn't know if it was his, he told me it was due 2 months later than she had told everybody...blah blah. I got a lawyer; he was pissed that I did, and he got one. The baby was born in September, and he's adorable. My husband's living with her and the baby; I'm still in our house with the dog. I'll be moving back to PA to live with my parents for awhile this month.

That's the Cliffs Notes version of my side of the story. I've tried to be fair, admitted when I screwed up, but I'm sure they'd each tell it differently. Every female who knew, including my in-laws, said the other woman 'played the baby card,' and that didn't require prompting from me. My anonymous informant sent me a thread this week where the other woman posted about getting medical help to get pregnant. I honestly don't think my husband knew; I know him, and I saw the terror on his face when he talked about it.

So, I gambled, and lost. I just don't know why, and that's what bugs me. The only person who seems happy is her. I know I'm sure as hell not; and I'm pretty sure my ex-husband isn't either. Why? What happened? I'm actually happy about the baby, because at least something good came from all this. But now it's over; and it doesn't seem to be what he wants.

I tried to give him time and space to think, to decide what he wanted. I don't think he expected the two of us to hold on so long; but neither one of us was letting go and making the decision for him. I had no reason; I still love him, and I did not, still do not, want my marriage to be over. I told him I wouldn't leave at the beginning, and I kept my promise. And I kept my integrity; I never caused her problems, never stooped to dirty tactics--I didn't let her make me a bad person. That was all I could do. I didn't give him an ultimatum, because that's no foundation for a marriage. I waited, so he could decide; and honestly, I had no better idea.

I don't know why he decided to file after 4 years. I hope it was his decision to not want to be with me; I don't know if it was. "If you love something, set it free. If it comes back, it's yours; if it doesn't, it never was." ? or "If you love something, set it free. If it comes back, it's yours; if it doesn't, it's girlfriend got knocked up." ?

So I'm 38, with a B.A. in English, no meaningful job experience, a little bit of money from the divorce, and I'm leaving a home in a city and state I love to move halfway across the country and back in with my parents. I've also never been a self-sufficient adult, and I have no clue where to start. In addition to the pain, the anger, the confusion, the frustration...there's the terror. I am truly terrified. I don't know how to do this. People tell me I can, but I don't know how, and I don't always believe them. There are days I don't want to--but my parents don't deserve that kind of tragedy in their lives.

For all our problems and faults, my husband was a wonderful husband in the important ways for many years. He treated me well. I didn't want this. But sometimes doing your best, trying your hardest just isn't enough, I guess. I'm trying to stop asking "why?" or wondering what I could have done; that way lies madness. I'm trying to accept there are some things I'll just never be able to understand, and live without those answers.

You started this thread 5 months ago. I hope things are better for you. I hope they'll be better for me 5 months from now. I usually don't feel like it, but I try to have hope. With change comes possibility, I guess.

I don't have advice, experience, wisdom on this subject. I'm looking for it, if anything useful even exists. When you didn't want out, when there is only loss and no gain for you, when your marriage was the most precious thing in the world to you...how do you cope? IS there anything besides looking down at your feet and taking one careful step at a time, hoping one day the footing won't be as treacherous and you'll be able to look up again, look ahead? I don't know yet. I'm definitely not there. I hate this; every aspect of it; there is nothing about this that is right or good. It's an abomination. But it's my life now. At least, for now. I try not to be bitter, try not to hate, try not to lose faith; but I'm so, so sad. So much is lost.

Divorce, to me, is Hell. I pray to God it's not this hard on everybody.
12/11/2010
Chilipepper Chilipepper
Dame Demi, you are a strong woman. Start believing it.

And the pain does lessen. Yours may take longer than mine, but there is hope after this long dark tea-time of the soul. One foot in front of another as you surmised.

Everything will be fine, and you'll be better for it.
12/11/2010
Dame Demi Dame Demi
Quote:
Originally posted by Chilipepper
Dame Demi, you are a strong woman. Start believing it.

And the pain does lessen. Yours may take longer than mine, but there is hope after this long dark tea-time of the soul. One foot in front of another as you surmised.

Everything will ... More
Thanks. I know I'm strong; it just takes a catastrophe to bring it out sometimes.

In a world where someone on a sex site comforts me with a Douglas Adams reference, who can help but believe everything will work out. I'll just make sure to bring a towel.
12/11/2010
Total posts: 17
Unique posters: 9