According to the statistics on fairwaydivorce.com, they say 41% of first marriages end in divorce, and 60% of second marriages end in divorce… Well, shoot… I thought I would at least get it right the second time around but, according to these statistics, my odds aren’t looking too great.
Despite how common it is to get divorced nowadays, I truly believed I would only get married once. It looks like that was just a pipe dream as I am currently going through my first divorce only a year after marriage. You may be wondering what went wrong, or did I honestly not notice any red flags before the wedding? And the answer to this question is “yes.” I saw red flags right before the wedding and throughout the relationship; however, I know all relationships take work, and I believed these red flags were things we could work through.
This is your reminder right now to check your motives in your relationship, because yes, red flags can be worked through; however, you can’t change people; people will only change when they want to change. So, are the red flags something you can change or are they something the other person must want to change? That is the major question you need to ask in your relationship before getting in too deep.
Now in terms of what went wrong. I think there were a few things at play here. I can genuinely say I married my best friend. We had been best friends before we started dating, and once we dated, I told him right from the get-go that I wanted to be married and pregnant within two years. I know it was very blunt and bold, but I didn’t want to waste my time in a relationship that wasn’t going in the direction I wanted. He agreed to my timeline, and away we went.
When the two-year mark was approaching, I pressured him to get things rolling, and he did. He planned out the most amazing proposal. I was blown away. It felt like it was straight out of a movie. I was so excited to be marrying my best friend.
All of this took place around the same time as Covid was happening. He and I had a trip to Europe planned, and obviously, all of that got cancelled. While we were cooped up at home, we figured this would be an excellent time to try for a child because we weren’t doing anything anyway. We got pregnant within two weeks of trying, and sadly we lost that baby due to a miscarriage. This struck a chord for me, and I was sad and had a fear it would happen again.
We continued to try, only this time, I took all the fun out of it. I had everything timed out of what days we needed to try, and I put my husband and me on this schedule that was so unromantic. He was getting frustrated and so was I. Just as we were about to give up…BAM… I was pregnant again, and we were so excited! Finally, all the stress of trying and my fear of not having children was gone, and we could enjoy the journey together.
Now, this is the biggest lesson I have learned. Since I was now pregnant, I had it in my head that I needed to be married before having this baby. I pushed for our wedding to be sooner. Because it was Covid, we decided to do a small wedding with a few family members, and our idea was to do a bigger destination wedding a few years down the road. My husband agreed to it, although he thought we should wait a few years and do it then. I disagreed, and this is where I learned a very valuable lesson. If I had just waited, I wouldn’t be getting divorced right now; I would just be calling off an engagement. However, I believe everything happens for a reason, and I honestly thought we would be together forever, so I didn’t see a problem with doing a smaller wedding. I feel like he and I both can say we tried to make things work in the marriage, and it just wasn’t meant to be.
Right before the wedding, things started to take a turn. My husband seemed to be going out with his buddies more and spending less time with me. I didn’t overthink it at the time as I felt the pressure from being stuck at home together while Covid was happening and trying for a baby stressed both of us out. It was honestly nice to have the space to myself. While this distance between us grew and grew. He was going out more than usual, and I thought maybe he wanted to get things out of his system since our baby was on the way, so I just let things be.
Over time we started arguing more, and he enjoyed being out of the house more than in it, and truth be told, I enjoyed having the place to myself. It wasn’t a hostile environment between us most of the time, we still laughed and joked with each other, but we had no romantic connection. It was like two roommates living together. Eventually, the distance between us got so big that we needed to talk about it because we were having a baby in a few weeks, and it honestly didn’t feel like we were together at all, let alone married. This conversation ended with us saying maybe it’s better if we separate. I was 38 weeks pregnant and super emotional, but I agreed with the decision. We planned to keep living with each other and raise the baby for the time being, but there would be no dating of other people while we were under the same roof.
I also wasn’t looking to be dating anyone as I was super pregnant and focused on being a mama. After our beautiful son was born, there was a love that overtook us, and we decided that we would try and make our marriage work so we could be a family. That lasted for about a week, and then my husband was out of the house again with his buddies. So, once again, the conversation of separating was on the table.
A few months went by, and then my husband came home one night saying he wanted to be together and work on our marriage. I agreed as he is the father of my baby, and I hadn’t even thought about moving on to anyone else, as I barely had time to take a shower, let alone find myself a new man.
I won’t go into too much detail about what officially ended the marriage as my ex-husband and I are on excellent terms as co-parents. I’ll let you use your imagination for that one. As I thought we were going to work on things together, it was brought to my attention during that time that an important vow had been broken and not one that I could recover from. Was I mad? Absolutely. Did I understand why he did it? Absolutely. Do I think it was right? Not at all. Have I forgiven him? Yes, because I believe our friendship is too good to throw away, and I want to be on the best terms for our son.
Part of me was relieved to find out this information because it finally meant I could move on. He and I had been so unhappy for a while, and I think Covid played a role in that. There were so many changes in both of our lives in such a short time. However, throughout all of this, I have had so much gratitude because this marriage and relationship brought me the greatest gift I could ever be given, and that is my son.
Having gratitude has made me look at this marriage as not failure or regret but as a lesson. I have learnt so much about myself in this short time, it has allowed me to grow and evolve into a newer, more mature version of myself, and there is no way I would be the person I am today without having this experience. My mom taught me about gratitude from a young age and how there are always two ways to view a situation, and I always choose to view it through the lens of gratitude. This is the most important lesson I have ever been taught, and it has forever changed my life.