Maybe it was when my dental hygienist commented on how people at her 10-year high school reunion were (in a whispered tone) divorced. Or, maybe it was when my mother was digging for information about whether one of my old classmates was divorced (My response: I didn’t ask, I don’t care, Does it matter?) Or, maybe it is because my Yahoo news page had this headline, “Movement Underway in California to Ban Divorce,” that I feel compelled to be thankful that there is a way to dissolve a marriage that isn’t working. [Note: I’d like to preface this post with the statement that I am very happy in my marriage so this post isn’t a reflection on my current state of affairs, but more my past and how divorce allowed me to be in my happy place now.]
My parents divorced when I wasn’t even 10 years old. I can remember them screaming at each other; I don’t know what about, but I do know that under separate roofs they were able to be friendly—even if it was just for my sake. When my father was in the hospital before he died, my mom was there visiting him often. He often told me that she was his best friend. Most of my junior high school classmates had divorced parents and their parents’ relationship post-divorce was not as warm and fuzzy as mine. I can’t imagine what life was like when their moms and dads were married.
My own story: I married young and somewhat impulsively for me. My ex is a great guy but the longer we stayed together the more we grew apart. Eventually, my discontent started to affect my health. (You can read all the sordid details of my first marriage’s demise here.) Deciding to get divorce was the hardest decision I ever made. Even when I knew that I couldn’t go on I had a hard time filing the papers. I don’t think anyone takes the decision to end a marriage lightly.
In the above news item, the gentleman spear heading this movement says that the ban is to protect the institution of marriage. Well, as I see it, such a ban will make the institution a prison for some. In my case, I would have probably ended up having a stroke with the amount of migraines I was experiencing. For others, living with an infidel or an abuser will be a painful reality.
No one enters into marriage thinking that they are going to get a divorce, but sometimes it is nice to have an escape clause. I’m glad I did.