Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Divorce, Who Knew?

I'm sitting here blogging in an avocado face mask. 

Hulk Smash, anyone?


I've got to keep this green mess on my face for 60 minutes .... 
So pull up a chair, it's about to get real up in here.

Did you know ... 

 That only one president has ever been divorced - Ronald Reagan. 

In New York and Mississippi, a spouse can SUE a third party for being responsible for the failure of the marriage, on the grounds of "alienation of affection."

According to U.S. statistics, if one partner smokes, their marriage is 75% more likely to end in divorce.

The most commonly cited statistic states that one in every four families will face divorce. More than one million people have parents who separate or divorce each year in the US.

The average length of divorce proceedings is 1 year in the United States.

Experts note that if a spouse has gained more than 20% of his or her body weight, divorce is more likely.

In two thirds of all American divorces, it's the woman who files. Additionally, while men are financially better off than women after a divorce, they are more likely to suffer emotionally.

More random facts about the titillating topic of divorce can be found here

I wake up thinking about my divorce and go to bed thinking about my divorce. In my old school, Catholic family, divorce is not cool. I would have stayed in my marriage forever. I believe that marriage is a river, it has its highs and lows, its growing-apart times and its growing-together times ... As hard as our marriage was, they were also the 3 happiest, though challenging, years of my life. 

I'm sad that it's over. As challenging as parts of it were, and as sadly as it ended, I don't regret it for one second.

We're going on almost a month since the "big fallout." I'm happy that he initiated the divorce, (over an email, isn't that classy?), because he truly was unhappy. And being responsible for someone else's happiness is just not fair, it's a losing battle, a passive aggressive, control tactic. 

Once I got over the pain of the initial impact and had a chance to catch my breath, all of these other emotions started to pop up. I wondered if maybe I was going crazy. I was happy, sad, mad, frustrated, all at different points in the same day. I could feel that whole spectrum of emotions in the course of an hour! 

HelpGuide.org says:

"Recognize that it’s OK to have different feelings. It’s normal to feel sad, angry, exhausted, frustrated, and confused—and these feelings can be intense. You also may feel anxious about the future. Accept that reactions like these will lessen over time. Even if the marriage was unhealthy, venturing into the unknown is frightening."

Grief is a natural reaction to loss, and the breakup or divorce of a love relationship involves multiple losses:
  • Loss of companionship and shared experiences (which may or may not have been consistently pleasurable)
  • Loss of support, be it financial, intellectual, social, or emotional
  • Loss of hopes, plans, and dreams (can be even more painful than practical losses)
This is the point I'm at right now in my grieving process. Dealing with all of this loss. I don't know if my mom's death when I was 10 has made me more resilient - is making this process easier - or if it's making it even more challenging, that, "Why me?" syndrome. First my mom, now my husband. 
I'm putting this out there in the blog world, because there may be someone else out there who's going through the same thing I am. Divorce wasn't my plan. Moving back to Texas to finish my degree while my husband finished his Recruiting assignment was the plan. 
My world's been turned upside down. My world as I knew it, has been ripped out from under me. Everything has changed. The world is now wide open again, the possibilities are out there ... But for all those people who love to remind me how wonderful being single is, it's hard for me to wrap my mind around it. I was so happy being a part of a team. I loved being a wife and having someone to take care of. 
Thank goodness I have Elliott! 


I don't know what new direction my life is going to take ...
... I just know I'm taking it one day at a time. And a little chocolate never hurt, either.

(Like I need an excuse to eat more chocolate. ;)

44 comments:

  1. Praying for you! This post brought years to my eyes. You're such a lovely person, I'm sorry you are going through this heartache.

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  2. I just started reading your blog and already know you are one tough cookie. Thanks for sharing, I've got a friend going thru a divorce and it's been terrible for her. My heart goes out to you honey! You're gonna be just fine :)

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  3. I agree with you on the spectrum of emotions. When I was going through my divorce, I was an unreliable mess, constantly distracted by that rush of emotion. But the line about the world being wide open again - I get that. I *STILL* hate that.

    I distinctly remember my pup sitting in front of me while I was on the phone, at the onset of the divorce. She was just staring at me with utter concern. She is and has been my P.I.C. I am glad you have Elliott and good friends around you.

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  4. Great post...face mask and all!
    I think you have a good outlook on everything! You are more honest than most people! Its scary to be in charge of another's happiness! Im sure another door will open and youll see this road as one that leads to youre own happiness...even if its just chocolate!

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  5. Thinking of you, in a non-creepy internet stranger way. And sending positive vibes. You know you're a strong, badass chick and you will come out the other side stronger and happier.

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  6. Good to seeing not doing too bad! I like that you look at things in a positive view, that probably helps you a little. Ugh Chocolate, it really should be ate for breakfast, lunch and dinner :) Just remember, do what you have to do to be happy - physically and emotionally :)

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  7. ive never commented before but i read your blog a lot on reader (well, feedly now).

    im so sorry you're going through this. im sure it is devastating but you will come out stronger and happier!! thank you for sharing your experience with us!

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  8. Just catching up on your blog. Sending you lots of love. x

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  9. You are so inspirational Courtney. My parents divorced when I was six, and although it was (and still is) an incredibly painful part of my life, I am so much happier they split because their marriage was unhealthy.
    You're right, you cannot be responsible for someone else's happiness - you are only responsible for your own. Keep your head up, keep your endorphins running, & keep your puppy & your friends close! You can do it! & thank you - as always - for being an honest and inspiring blogger.

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  10. Courtney, I am truly amazed at the strength you've been showing. I can't imagine what it is like to be in your situation, but I am a FIRM believer that everything happens for a reason. You may not see it now, but eventually that reason will present itself and I hope you can look back at this time and see what an amazingly strong woman you were/are. Keep rolling with the punches girl! Sending positive vibes your way. - Lindsay

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  11. You will move on...You will be stronger...Wiser...and you will learn to trust and love again. It will take time and it will be hard, but it will also be a great time in your life to start fresh! Keep your head up and be grateful for your health, friends, and your pup. My pup has seen it all and besides my family, she's the most loyal creature. Always there for me when I need her! XOXO

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  12. You will get through it and Elliot will always love you the MOST, no matter what. Dogs are amazing at helping us through the worst times.

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  13. Im so sorry and stay strong! You are beautiful and you will get thru this. I know how you feel and a Big Hug to you!

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  14. Sending you happy thoughts :)

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  15. Sending you positive thoughts and happy days ahead. Change is difficult ... and the biggest changes are the most upheaving. This was a wonderfully written post on a very difficult topic. Thanks for sharing.

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  16. Big hugs! I've been there and it sucks. I didn't believe in divorce but my life had become so miserable and I had tried everything to make it work (a year of marriage counseling that my ex-huband never went to! or even asked about) that I felt like I had no choice. I struggled for a while over it because I felt like a failure. Slowly, I put the pieces of my life back together. I did the things that I wanted to, I spent time with the people who meant the most to me, and I joined a running club so I would have people to run with. I found my own happiness. Then, I met a great guy from the running club who also had been divorced and we started dating. Last July, we got married. My second marriage sure has had it's challenges too but I've never been happier and I know that this man is my true soulmate. So heartbreak does have a happy ending after all. You will get there too, I promise. And if you want to talk to a stranger who understands, I'd be more than happy to cry & laugh with you...karleen_kudej@yahoo.com

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  17. Chocolate makes everything better! I can't even imagine what you are going through. I'll be sending positive vibes your way!

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  18. Sorry to hear this. I know you are a strong and confident woman and you will get through this and find your happiness again. Yes, Elliott will help you through this. Dogs are such faithful friends aren't they?

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  19. Just want to say I appreciate you sharing and I definitely recognize that it takes a lot of courage to put it all out there on your blog. I'm so sorry for what you're going through, I've experienced a lot of loss in the past few weeks and it is taking a toll on me emotionally, mentally and physically. I started seeing a counselor this week and I'm going to do my best to work on "me" for a while. And cuddle with my puppy dog as much as I possibly can.

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  20. Wow I'm so sorry you have to go through this. One of my best friends is finalizing her divorce now. Even though she wasn't happy, its still hard to transition back to being 'single'--- its taken her a long time to get her head around everything and to be comfortable with the notion, but once she has, so many more opportunities have come her way. I hope the same goes for you!

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  21. Praying for you! You're a strong woman and you'll get through it. xoxo lots of love

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  22. I wish I had something profound to say but I suppose even if I did, I'd sound like a tool:) Please know that you have a lot of people in your corner rooting for you.

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  23. Oh Courtney,
    I am seriously praying for you hardcore.
    Follow-up on the pups:
    "No matter how close we are to another person, few human relationships are as free from strife, disagreement, and frustration as is the relationship you have with a good dog. Few human beings give of themselves to another as a dog gives of itself. I also suspect that we cherish dogs because their unblemished souls make us wish – consciously or unconsciously – that we were as innocent as they are, and make us yearn for a place where innocence is universal and where the meanness, the betrayals, and the cruelties of this world are unknown."
    ― Dean Koontz, A Big Little Life: A Memoir of a Joyful Dog

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  24. Oh Courtney, praying real real hard for you over here.

    To follow up to T's comment:

    "No matter how close we are to another person, few human relationships are as free from strife, disagreement, and frustration as is the relationship you have with a good dog. Few human beings give of themselves to another as a dog gives of itself. I also suspect that we cherish dogs because their unblemished souls make us wish – consciously or unconsciously – that we were as innocent as they are, and make us yearn for a place where innocence is universal and where the meanness, the betrayals, and the cruelties of this world are unknown."
    ― Dean Koontz, A Big Little Life: A Memoir of a Joyful Dog

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  25. I give you credit for talking about it. I'm sure it can't be easy. I hope you find some comfort along the way as you think things through. I'm just sorry you're having to feel pain hun

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  26. Thank you for your post...as you I have just had the rug pulled out from under me 3 weeks ago. Papers were filed yesterday. My family keeps telling me I'm a strong person and I'll be ok. Right now the only thing that keeps me ok are my two wonderful boys and my running and lifting.... I just started lifting few months ago and amazed on what a change it has made to my body and mind. Feeling strong physically has helped me so much mentally. Hang in there...day to day is how I do it. The moment I catch myself thinking too far ahead it can be overwhelming. 22 years....I don't know anything different...he has been my life. Now it's a new life to figure out...we both will make it just fine!

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  27. You've been such an inspiration to me throughout my fitness journey, I'm so sorry you're having to go through all this. This post just shows that your strong in so many ways, and you will get through it all!

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  28. I'm so sorry you're going through this. You're a strong woman, don't feel like a failure. Shit happens!

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  29. I too am currently going through a divorce. I understand what you mean about the grieving process. You are dealing with a death, of sorts. Death of a marriage. You are not alone. I have been in therapy trying to deal with this among other things and my therapist recommended I pick up a book recently. I think it may help you as well. The title is "The language of letting go". It's a meditation type book where each day you read a passage. It's really helped me deal with some of the questions.

    Hope you find some comfort soon!

    Sandra

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  30. I've never been divorced but I did live with a man for three years and were together 4 and half. We raised my daughter together and then it was over. It is hard still. It's been 2 years since we've been together but I still get a little sad sometimes. It's much better though! It just takes some time. My heart goes out to you!

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  31. I had no idea. Just know this...what you are feeling is totally normal. I went through a divorce at 22 (husband was cheating and chose her over me) and he blamed me for his unhappiness. Reading your comment about being responsible for someone else's happiness made me smile because girl, you got it right! I know it not your plan and that your world has been flipped upside down. I bet you don't know if you are coming or going somedays. It's okay. I have no advice for you other than to say that I am so very sorry for your broken heart.

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  32. You are only 25, you have your whole life ahead of you. He may not be the right person for you, but somewhere out there there is someone for you. I know that this is hard, but you are strong!!!! It's not the end of the world, and your life will go on! Focus on you! <3<3<3

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  33. You are only 25, you have your whole life ahead of you. He may not be the right person for you, but somewhere out there there is someone for you. I know that this is hard, but you are strong!!!! It's not the end of the world, and your life will go on! Focus on you! <3<3<3

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  34. You are a very strong woman! At 25, you have your whole life ahead of you. Keep your head up, focus on you, and keep on keepin' on!!! <3<3<3

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  35. Hey Courtney - I actually sent you an email a little bit ago because I too got divorced unexpectedly and struggled at the beginning with feeling like the ground was ripped out from under me. I completely understand - but just know you're going to be okay. And sometimes things have to fall apart so other things can come together. This is a scary time, but it's full of opportunity and promise. Keep believing and stay strong!! xoxo jenn

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  36. Thanks for sharing. I was married to an army man for three years and he ended it over the phone from Korea. I remember having all of those crazy feelings and for me the "loss" was definitely the hardest part. I also loved being part of a team and we had so many hopes and dreams and plans together that I had to accept were never going to happen. I went through an AWFUL few months - AWFUL. I remember just laying on the couch saying to myself "how is this my life? MY life? This is not what I planned" But gradually it got better and now roughly 6 years later (I was only 24 at the time) I am so happy that my life worked out the way it did. It truly was a case of what doesn't kill you makes you stronger <- that is no longer just a saying to me - it is a truth. Like you I was forced out of my comfort zone and had no choice but to keep moving - alone. Sure I had family and friends but that doesn't fill that loss of having a partner. Now I feel like I have a better sense of self and independence than a lot of other women my age who have never really had to depend on themselves. I'm certainly not jaded in relationships - I still fall in love and hope to be married again (pretty soon!) but I always know inside that I am strong enough alone. I made it through the dark tunnel to the light on the other side and you will too! You are not alone!

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  37. Thanks for sharing this. I can't imagine the flood of different emotions. Sounds like you are pulling through strong though.

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  38. Bummer kiddo...this one wasn't easy to read. I bet you will come back stronger then you were before!

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  39. So sorry that you are going through this. There is always a silver lining.....Praying for you

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  40. I had no idea! You are so brave AND strong to share! Know that you will bounce back! Focus on you ( and Elliot) for a while!! <3

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  41. You are so brave AND string to share this! I know you will bounce back! Time to focus in you & Elliot! ;)

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  42. Just reading this now girl. I hate when people who have never gone through the same thing try to give me "advice" so I won't do that but just reiterate that you are strong, beautiful, and have a great outlook.

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  43. Life takes us to strange places and I have learned that marriages are ofcourse of no certainty. But don't get me wrong, there are still marriages that are bound to last for a lifetime no matter how bumpy it might get. But for the ones who undergo divorce, never let it get you down like a stigma, divorce happens to people, but it does not make them less of a person.

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