We all know that 50% of marriages end in divorce. It’s terrible and depressing. My parents got divorced over the past five years and I am still dealing with it.
What I didn’t expect is how I would react to my mom starting to date again. First, it never even crossed my mind that she would; and second, I was completely unprepared for what would happen next.
1. You get really angry.
My first reaction was to say every swear word that I knew. Mostly it was like “What the FUCK?” I am usually a calm and sane person, but this put me over the edge. I think that for most people they don’t know how to deal with this news, and what better way to cope than by throwing your pillow across the wall? Eventually when I calmed down, I realized I was being irrational.
2. You get away with more things.
Now that my anger had subsided, I started to realize that my mom was acting differently. Asking her for $10 was no longer World War III. She seemed more willing to let me go out for the night without coming home. (Side note: I just graduated from college and have moved back home.) She doesn’t pry into things that I don’t want to talk about and gives me my needed space.
3. She asks for your advice.
“What color dress should I wear?” This is now something I hear from my mother, who used to not give two shits what my opinion was. It’s like since I’m young and have been dating more recently then she has I know more. I smile and say “blue,” but I’m really thinking is, “does it even matter?” It’s nice to have her ask my opinion, but it also makes me feel like a friend and not a daughter.
4. You get jealous.
Being single, I think, is normal for any 22-year-old, but now that my 46-year-old mom is dating, it’s like I think I should be, too. How in the hell can my mom get a date and I am stuck at home watching my sixth consecutive episode of Parks and Rec on Netflix? Yes, I know my mom is using dating sites, but still I am jealous. Also I know these men are taking her on exciting dates and this makes me hate it even more.
5. Your stalking skills are heightened.
Who is the guy? What does he do? Where does he live? So many questions are going off in my mind and the best way to answer them is to do a lot of snooping. Looking at his LinkedIn, seeing if he has a Facebook, and then going through all of his pictures. It’s creepy, I can admit that, but I am only saving my mom in the long run. I know my mom isn’t doing it, so someone has to.
6. Your mom’s friends gross you out.
This could only be for my situation, but most of my mom’s friends are single or divorced and using dating websites. They love to make jokes like “Don’t do anything I wouldn’t do” to one another. This makes me want to throw up everywhere. Also they will leave the room that I’m in to “talk,” but I know what they are really talking about and it is the stuff that would give me nightmares for the rest of my life.
7. You learn from their mistakes.
It’s a sad thing when your parents get divorced, and it makes you even sadder to think about your parents being alone for the rest of their lives. I know that my mom is just trying to be happy and it’s hard to not see yourself being the same way in 20 years. It has allowed me to know that this is not where I want to be and now I can live my life trying to make it better.
8. You feel hopeful for your mom.
Despite the last point, it’s nice to see my mom happy again. Even though I hate the thought of her dating, I’m also trying not to be completely selfish. She is in a better mood and I know it’s not just because I washed the dishes. When I am finally living on my own I know I wouldn’t want my mom to be alone. She deserves to be happy.