Don’t put yourself through divorce. Don’t even go there. It is unbelievably painful.
There is shame. There is heartache like you have never experienced in your life. You will cry more tears than you ever thought possible. You will worry about your children. What is this doing to them? How do you help them through this? Is their acting out because they are teenagers or because their heart is hurting as much as yours?
You can’t sleep through all this. You lose weight. You can’t eat. Your kids worry about you and you worry about your kids. Same with your friends. No one warns you about this. The pain, the worry, the utter bottomless sadness. It eats through you. Life sucks. Life doesn’t even look good anymore. How to escape it?
So how not to go through divorce? Let your heart tell you when you first meet the ‘perfect’ one. Easier said than done, I know.
I met him through a dating service. First guy who asked me out through the service. I was hooked. Good career. Navy guy. Loved the outdoors as much as I did. We hit it off. A match made in heaven. We looked good together. We matched.
But…, what if you had to change to be with him? To be this ‘perfect’ match. Looking back, I see that I changed. I lost myself in this whirlwind “love of my life” fun of being with someone, getting engaged, getting married.
The things I did before with friends, the things I had fun with and never felt self-conscious about, I didn’t do with him. I let him do them and I followed. I lost who I was. I lost the me I once was. I see that now. Didn’t see it then in the middle of a life together. I thought everything was perfect, that I was supporting him.
But that strong woman I once was, the one who would go alone on a three day backpacking trip, who would do a 100-mile bike trip with a group of guy friends, who was comfortable taking care of herself, who laughed and joked and had fun with so many people, I lost that person in being with one single individual.
He didn’t make me do this. He didn’t make me lose me. But I did. That’s what you get when you put yourself totally into someone else and they don’t reciprocate.
I see that now. It was a one-sided relationship. I gave and gave and gave and he stayed the same. The icing wore off and gradually as the years went by, I saw him for what he really was/is.
And I changed myself for him.
So what am I saying? To all of you, female and male, do not change who you are to have a relationship with someone else. You shouldn’t have to do that. If you do, if you feel you need to, this person isn’t for you.
You want someone who is going to take you as you are and make you even better. Someone who is going to let you be you.
While you make that someone even better. It is a partnership where the two of you create a being even better than you are alone. You should be better than you were alone if you are with the right person.
So don’t forget it. Don’t lose yourself for someone else. Never. Ever.