Can those two words even live in the same sentence together?! Do love and divorce co-exist? Of course they can. I’m living proof that you can be in the middle of a divorce and still love someone. After all, I’ve tried to divorce my husband three times, and if I’m really honest, even more than that in mind. Fortunately for both of us we’re still married. I want to start sharing with you why exactly we’re still married AND still be in love.
I’m inspired to start sharing more of my personal journey with you. I’ve shied away from really talking about my story because I thought it might be too much of a roller coaster. Rollercoaster or not, it’s time to acknowledge we all go through challenges and have major ups and downs in our relationships. And it’s time to see how we play a crucial role in the drama of it all.
So let’s start with my divorce attempts. One of the key elements of why I’ve tried to divorce has been because I wasn’t taking care of me. I wasn’t putting myself first. I wasn’t living in my truth. I was playing the role of the committed wife and mother that I thought was my job but ultimately left me to the wayside. What I mean when I say, “I wasn’t taking care of me,” is that I wasn’t speaking my truth. And quite honestly I didn’t even know what my truth was. All I knew I was at the time I was I was exhausted at trying to live in a relationship that was one-sided and I wasn’t being heard. But here’s the funny thing. I wasn’t being heard because I wasn’t speaking up. Ya gotta speak up if ya wanna be heard!!
I was feeling angry, bitter, resentful, sad, unfulfilled, unhappy, confused, and ultimately used my husband as the reason for all my unhappiness. I used him as the excuse as to why I had all these feelings. Rather than taking stock in my own inner life, diving deep into why I was truly feeling unfulfilled, I focused on my outer life and blamed it all on him. The person I wasn’t loving was me. The person I was angry with was really me.
Let’s clarify what truth means because it’s different for each of us. For me my truth at the time was learning how to use my voice and stand my ground. It was learning how to express my feelings, learning how I did and didn’t want to be treated, what I expected and didn’t expect from my partner. It’s putting me first rather everyone else. My truth was learning how to stand my ground, meaning, saying what I meant and not caving under pressure.
When we were first married my husband was loud, controlling, overbearing…you get the picture. And I didn’t realize I could speak out against this behavior. I was brought to listen and not say too much. Thus when I married I wasn’t quite sure what to do with his ways.
Ultimately it’s turned out to be a gift for me. And let me say, he’s definitely not the same person I married more than 20 years ago. The gift of his overbearing personality was that I learned how to use my voice and express myself. I learned to be clear and concise in my communication. In fact, after my second attempt at divorce I desired to take it to the next level and took a courses in Conscious Language and Non-Violent Communication. I desired to have the ability to detach from the swirl of emotion that comes with an argument and be able to focus on the facts of the situation. I didn’t want one of us to be right and one of us to be wrong. I wanted to be able to talk about our issue with neutrality.
Each time I made an attempt to leave my marriage it’s been because I’d forgotten to speak up. I became complacent and would fall back into old ways. I wasn’t taking care of me. I was under the false assumption that once we tackle a problem, that problem is over and fixed forever. Not so much! I am continually aware of how easy it can be to not speak up. Often times speaking up means having the hard conversations that no one wants to have. Yet if we don’t have them, ultimately it leads to separation. Maybe not the physical separation of divorce but the separation of me vs you.
I invite you to see what’s going on with your truth. Are you living in your truth? Are you honest with your feelings? And are you putting needs first and speaking up? Allow yourself to go to the potential deep places that you ignore because it’s just easier that way. I’d love to hear how this sparks conversation in your mind.
MY VIDEO FOR YOU ON LOVE AND DIVORCE IS HERE