“The only thing more unthinkable than leaving was staying; the only thing more impossible than staying was leaving. I didn’t want to destroy anything or anybody. I just wanted to slip quietly out the back door, without causing any fuss or consequences, and then not stop running until I reached Greenland.” ― Elizabeth Gilbert,
“There is no such thing as a “broken family.” Family is family, and is not determined by marriage certificates, divorce papers, and adoption documents. Families are made in the heart. The only time family becomes null is when those ties in the heart are cut. If you cut those ties, those people are not your family. If you make those ties, those people are your family. And if you hate those ties, those people will still be your family because whatever you hate will always be with you.” ― C. JoyBell C.
Marriage is supposed to be a lifelong commitment between two people based on love and partnership, but sadly that isn’t always the way it turns out. Not every couple who choose to tie the knot find the “happily-ever-after” fairy-tale life that they had dreamed of—sometimes what they find can be very, very far from it. For something as inspiring and hopeful as a marriage to take such a turn for the worse that the members decide to call it off, there have to be some pretty serious reasons for it. No one takes divorce lightly, but some people apparently do take the things they need to do to prevent it lightly, and that can lead to very difficult situations for those involved. Here are some personal experiences that people have shared, shedding light on what it can take for a marriage to be cut prematurely short.
12. What Happens in Vegas Stays in Vegas
We got married way too quick. It was Vegas where she was from. Came back to NY where I worked and she did nothing at all. She left around X-mas to see family in Vegas. Came back like three weeks later. Then a month later just after she interviewed for a job she told me she was leaving again to go to Virginia to help her worthless aunt move back to Vegas. She gets there and blows $500 in two days then calls me to ask for money to put gas in her aunt’s car. I said hell no and she didn’t talk to me for two days. I finally tell her this isn’t working. We get a quick Vegas divorce and she is remarried six months later.
11. When the True Colors Came Out
He became a totally different person after we got married. He became very controlling and manipulative. I was expected to do all the chores and make dinner every night (this after working a highly stressful 40 hour/week job). He became emotionally and verbally abusive to me. Constantly thought I was cheating on him. If I had anything other than a smile on my face at all times I was ridiculed. Everything that happened was always my fault. He was never wrong. He was always the victim. I didn’t want to go home because I didn’t know if I was walking into Dr. Jekyll or Mr. Hyde. Had him go to two different counselors and didn’t make it more than two sessions with each because he didn’t need therapy. I decided to stop it all when I started to become depressed from the constant stress. I am a normally very happy positive person and I became a walking bunch of nerves. I couldn’t get past the belief that anyone who truly loved me would never treat me like he had been. Have been divorced for six months now. Although I get lonely sometimes, I would still take loneliness a thousand times over being back with him.
10. Taking Things Too Far
It took years for me to finally get to the point where I was done. The last straw was the night he drunkenly screamed at me for hours, at least five hours. Then, he blared loud music for another hour or so, before finally passing out. He’d done it several times in the past, but that time, it broke me. I spent most of the next day crying. That gut wrenching, mournful type of crying. I had a job and moved out six months later. It’s been four years, I don’t regret a minute.
9. Priorities Out of Whack
He decided he loved drugs and partying more than me, and routinely ignored our daughter so he could do just that.
8. Making a Long-Term Investment
When I came to the realization that if my child ended up in a relationship like my marriage because she thought that’s how married people treated each other, I’d never forgive myself.
7. There’s a First Time for Everything
When I got into a big fight with our 19-year-old son and punched him in the face. She understandably left me for that. Me and my son were fine like a month later. It was all because of him playing Xbox all day and not looking for a job. Everybody else in the family was working or going to school.
That was my first ever display of violence, then I went to 26 anger management classes, and it was my last. It happened six years ago.
6. In Hot Water
She threw a pot of boiling water at me. It was thrown over our five-year-old son. She threw it at me because I was paying more attention to my son than her, I had just gotten home from work and he asked me to play the Nintendo with him.
5. One Word: Steve
See, Steve was that guy my ex knew in high school. That guy where there was always a spark of chemistry, but the time was never right. He was the “one that got away.” Years later when we’d been married for a few years she got back in touch with some old friends and wound up going to visit those old friends—Steve included. Old sparks began to fly, and next thing you know the missus was carrying on an affair with Steve.
She left me to be with him. They were soul-mates, after all. Denied their true love by fourteen years of time and two intervening marriages (me and my wife and Steve and his).
That’s the easy answer. Blame it on Steve.
Truth is, I never should have got married in the first place. At least, not to her. It was doomed from the get-go and Steve was just a willing scapegoat.
4. The Last Straw
I just realized that no matter what I did he was never going to change. I let him walk all over me and cheat on me for years and kept thinking if I just did more, was more patient, a better wife etc, he would realize his mistakes. Example: He would cheat. I would catch him. A huge fight would break out. He would manipulate me into it somehow being my fault he did it. You don’t love me enough, you’ll never trust me again, you didn’t have sex with me that one time back in 2006 and I felt rejected. Somehow I would have to make it up to him and prove to him I trusted him.
I’d forgive him and work my butt off to be happier, nicer, more understanding (all the BS he fed me) and after a few months I would just catch him all over again.
The last straw was when he convinced me he had really changed. He wanted to be a family, the whole package.
Of course I ended up pregnant. It turned out to be high risk and I was hospitalized often. Only allowed home with bed rest. Even then he wouldn’t stop running around on me.
I lost 45 pounds, my hair started falling out, I was too weak to even walk. My own family thought I was dying.
He didn’t even care.
So at one point I was sitting by myself and I just realized. I was done. He was never going to change. And it wasn’t my fault. I couldn’t fix whatever was broken in him and I was done trying.
It took six months after the baby was born before doctors would let me go back to work. I moved out. Spent a few years alone, swearing off men. Now I’m with a fantastic man that loves me.
The divorce is still dragging on. My ex tried a lot of dirty tricks when he found out I was leaving. I laughed in his face at every one.
He doesn’t get it. At one point I seriously thought I would die. I thought my kids would be left alone with only him to take care of them. After going through that, nothing he could do could bother me. Ever.
So anyway. That’s my story. Hope it helps.
3. A Turn for the Worse
She told me that the voices were telling her to hurt the kids. It broke me. This was after four years of treatment for schizophrenia. She wasn’t getting better, only worse.
2. A Long Road to a Happy Ending
I got married for all the wrong reasons. My dad had just died a couple of years before, and my mother and sister collaborated in an act of epic insanity that defies explanation later that same year. I was left completely alone. I was a mess.
To shorten a ridiculously long story, I fell head over heels in like with a girl I worked with at the ripe old age of 19. She was smart and stubborn and genetically incapable of backing down from an argument. We became really good friends. If either of us had possessed any brains whatsoever, it would never have progressed beyond that.
But we were young and extremely stupid (redundant, I know) and one day she gave me an ultimatum: either we got married, or she was leaving me forever.
Inadvertently, she pressed the button that was installed by my family a few years before.
I was too much of a coward to tell her off, so I spent the next ten years married to her. It wasn’t all bad, not at all. We had a lot of things in common, and shared lots of interests and curiosities. But in the end, there was no love. There was no mutual respect. I wasn’t attracted to her. I’d be willing to bet that during the final three years of our marriage, we didn’t have sex more than ten times.
I was unable to give her what she wanted from the relationship. I didn’t want children, I disliked most of her family (with the notable exception of her youngest brother, whom she found generally irritating) and towards the end I was drinking a LOT. I never got into trouble with the law or with my job, but I would come home every day, put on headphones, and get snot-slinging drunk. She was unhappy with the amount of money I made as a computer technician, while she was raking in money hand over fist in her real estate job during the bubble just before the collapse. She derided me for “not pulling my weight,” and when I got laid off it became even worse. She made her parents a bigger part of our life. I got lots of lectures from her parents. Side note: Her dad was notorious for leaving the bathroom door open while using the facilities.
Eventually, we both started cheating on each other.
She was always the smarter half of a pair of idiots, so she eventually filed for divorce. I was so stupid that I probably would have stayed unhappily married, drunk, broke, and cheating forever. She did me a huge favor by filing for divorce, even though the particulars screwed us both much harder than she intended the divorce to entail.
The divorce was eight years ago, and I have to admit that while IT SUCKED GANGRENOUS PANTS-S***ING LEPROSY-SPREADING ARMADILLO A**HOLES AT THE TIME, getting divorced was one of the best things that has ever happened to me.
1. That’s When You Know Something is Wrong…
For me it was 1000 little things, but the moment I decided I had to was when she was driving and I was in passenger seat as we went down highway. I thought about opening the door and jumping, killing myself just to get away from her… What stopped me from doing it was the fear I would survive and be stuck with her because I would be cripple.