Why Bother Thinking About Divorce?
There was a time when I toyed with the idea of divorcing my husband. We’d been married for three years, we’d just had our first child, and were in the process of building our home. I still liked my husband, but I doubted I could spend the rest of my life with him.
Marriage, like building a house, required more fortitude, endurance and hard work than I’d anticipated. Both involved the practice of patience—not one of my natural virtues. Also, there were compromises to be made— impossible for an inflexible, idealist like myself. Inconveniences also abounded—no running water or electricity and at times impasses in our communication with each other.
The knight in shining armor, whom I thought I’d married, had not delivered me into a beautiful castle, or the blissful happiness I’d imagined in marriage. Instead, I’d stepped into a world of trying circumstances which for me, equated to ligament reasons for leaving.
Thankfully though, I came to my senses before I made any regretful decisions. I did not leave an imperfect relationship, walk away from our marriage, or separate myself from the unfinished business of our house. Instead, I severed myself from the idea of divorce.
Repudiating Our Thoughts
On my wedding day, I’d walked down the aisle with a mind filled with uncertainties and fears. Though I’d fallen head over heels for the tall, lean, blue-eyed and soft-spoken man who had proposed marriage to me, I had my doubts. Was he completely trustworthy? Did he really love me? What if he left me? Before I stood beside my husband-to-be in front of our small crowd of witnesses, I’d made a promise to myself. If marriage did not work out, I could always get a divorce.
The idea of divorce was my escape hatch, my ace in the hole, a resource and private vow I kept in my back pocket just in case I needed it. After three years of marriage, I pulled it out and examined it closely. Was it a pledge I wanted to keep? Was the vow a good one? Did it line up with my present values?
I had to admit it was a promise I’d made in haste, and with fear, one which no longer fit who I aimed to be. If I wanted to commit to marriage it required me to close my escape hatch and discard the previous promise I’d made to myself about having a perfect relationship or else… I decided to sever my idea with divorce instead of my relationship with my husband.
Why bother thinking about divorce? Sometimes it is worth thinking about the erroneous pledges and vows we commit ourselves to and instead, divorce ourselves from them instead of from the people who love us.