For those of you who have read some of my past work, you know that I’ve referenced my ex(es) in them. I just wanted to clarify that I am not talking about the same person when I use the word “ex” in my articles, nor do I have a bad relationship with all of them now — particularly the one I am talking about in this article.
For lack of a better word, my ex is “unwavering” in certain views of things. Throughout the course of our two-year relationship, the topic of marriage came up. The conversation never scared me, plus, since we were raising her infant daughter together at the time, it almost seemed mandatory to have the conversation.
The one thing that struck a chord with me is that her first marriage will be her only marriage. Not, “she wants her first marriage to be her only marriage,” it will be her only marriage. Whether or not the marriage ends in divorce, it will be the only time she says, “I do.” Wanting only one marriage makes a lot of sense, but closing the door on future nuptials? To me, it’s stupid logic.
Like everyone else who has or will eventually tie the knot, I want my first marriage to be my only marriage. I don’t want to go through the pain of a divorce; I don’t want to have to refer to someone as “my first wife” to someone else; and God forbid if I have kids — I would never want to put them through that.
But in the end, we are all on the pursuit of happiness. So, if, on your pursuit, you hit a speed bump with someone, why would you punish someone else (and yourself) for meeting the other person first? My mother and father divorced when I was about 7 years old and it wasn’t until she met her now-fiancé that I’ve seen her the happiest she’s ever been.
That’s what I try to instill in my ex. If you marry someone and it doesn’t work out, it really sucks; but it doesn’t mean you should lock that door and throw away the key. Meeting someone else who can get you to that point of happiness and infatuation to where you would want to marry again may take more work, but is it fair to him that you won’t marry him because of your rule? (And, not for nothing, it was your choice to marry the first guy, not his.)
Whether or not she eventually gets married and/or divorced, I want her to be happy in life. If that means finding someone after a divorce and the two of them have no plans to ever get married, or if she eventually decides to change her rule and tie the knot again, she deserves happiness.
I’ve seen what post-divorce life is like through my parents. I’ve seen the joy that one can experience even after going through a divorce (with kids). To completely turn away from the idea of that just because you only want one marriage is, to me, ignorant.
Granted, I value the sanctity of marriage and do not believe that rings and vows should be thrown around frivolously. Marriage is not a pair of shoes you can buy one day because you like it, then return it later because you’re sick of them, never used them, or because they didn’t go with everything else you already had as well as you may have thought.
My ex and I may butt heads at times, but I like to think that we have a mutual desire for one another to be happy. This is someone who showed me how to love and raise a child; what it’s like to be loved by a child; and what it’s like to love and be loved by another person. For those reasons alone, she deserves to be happy; whatever that means for her.