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 shore66
Joined: 5/23/2004
Msg: 20
Death of a 24 yr MarriagePage 2 of 2    (1, 2)
When my 29 year marriage ended, I remember thinking, "Life goes on, even when you don't want it to." It was sooo painful. But as time passed, things really did get better. I noticed the tightness in my neck and shoulders disappeared. I no longer had to worry what kind of mood he would be in when he got home. My kids told me I was more fun to be around. I realized how cramped my life had become, trying to be who I wasn't and trying to see him as he wasn't.

I found therapy to be very helpful. If you haven't been seeing a counselor, now would be a good time. And if s/he isn't a good fit, find a different one.

Online dating can be shocking to someone who has been out of the dating world for awhile. Yes, there are a lot of blatant sexual invitations. If that is not your thing, just delete and move on. The same for anyone who disparages you for your looks - screw 'em. There are great guys online, but you need to be patient - and have a sense of humor.

It is easy to fall prey to the idea that only the young and "perfect" can find dates, but next time you are at the mall, look around. Most folks are pretty ordinary, and they seem to pair up just fine.

Good luck to you. I'd bet money that a year from now you will look back and laugh at how far you will have come.
 RedHead040
Joined: 7/10/2006
Msg: 21
view profile
History
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 7:35:17 AM
Bless your heart, My prayers are with you. I went thru a divorce about 31/2 yrs ago we had been married for 23 years. He also found someone got her knocked up and then didnt know what he wanted to do.. Well I found myself alone with two kids left at home. It was hard to learn to be single, I was married since I was 16. But girl remember that Time does cure all hurt and you will get through it and be a better person in the long run. Here is a website with some great gals who has been were u are right now. http://www.sassypinkpeppers.com/faq.asp go take a look and see if you might find a bit of answers/help/friendship.. God Bless
 hellofagal
Joined: 7/27/2008
Msg: 22
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 7:51:11 AM
As you see OP you aren't alone...you probably knew all along it would come to this anyway and of course,he has his side too...but men aren't like women,they have a need to be adored,loved,SEX,is the biggie...at 43,you are young and another relationship,maybe even more,is a certain thing...you probably have lots of things that you would like to change about yourself..and probably lots of those things have bothered you for a long time and you just didn't do anything about them...well,now,you have to face them and change because you know that you can't keep on being down on yourself.Life without a man is really emancipating and rewarding because you can do it,you can become a self made woman,and you also need to develop your self esteem..I know it's shocking when it finally happens but sometimes there isn't a damn thing you can do about it except roll with the punches..At least you have family...good luck...and,things don't happen overnight...everyday is a new one with new adventures and challenges...just don't take him back...
 carolann0308
Joined: 12/9/2006
Msg: 23
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History
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 8:15:32 AM
I divorced a couple of years ago after a 20 year marriage I was 43. The difference between you and I is that I initiated the divorce and was emotionally seperated from my Ex for years. I was ready to begin anew and was very excited to be on my own finally.
You still are hurt and going through all the upheaval and emotions that some divorces will bring. Do not start dating or looking for another man until you can safely say you are over your husband. Loneliness is a good reason to get a dog not a guy.
I would suggest removing yourself from the online group you were both part of and start living for you and your children only. Find some new interests, join a ladies only social group, take care of your finances and for gods sake pamper yourself. You have to learn to love yourself warts and all before you can share who you are with a new love.
It will be a rough year but be strong and trust that you will get through this.
 KatyDavis
Joined: 7/7/2008
Msg: 24
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 8:25:45 AM
I know how hard this is, I lost a marriage, lost a man after 24 years. . . I promise you that you will survive this. The trick of it is that there are no quick fixes, no easy answers, you learn to live alone. There is hope for new relationships, hope for a new life albeit a different single life, and you look for the positives in this new existence.

I too miss all the draws of being married, but I have a new relationship . . . with me. I have learned that first and foremost, now I answer to me, to my conscience, to my belief system, to my wants and needs. It is good enough to be true.

Accept the fact that you will feel the way you do and for a bit of time. Know that you are leading into something wonderful and that it might take some time to realize that you are still you, and you will come out stronger, smarter, happier and self actualized. Trust me when I tell you that being part of the marriage is not as important or necessary as it seems. You will come to know that being with a man is what you want, not what you need.

As you embark on your new adventure, look ahead, don't look back. Try to focus on all the great and wonderful things that could and should happen to you. You might rediscover that feeling of falling in love, you might find ways to bring joy and excitement into your life, you might find yourself a part of a new blended family, you might find that you prefer your own company and stay single . . . it all really remains to be seen.

You will feel better, know this. Choose to believe it. Look to the future with newfound hope.

Trust in you.
 HOTMAMA521
Joined: 6/25/2008
Msg: 25
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History
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 8:27:27 AM
I ended a 37 1/2 marriage that was doomed from the very start. We did try to patch it up and stay together, but there were to many things that were wrong. After 7 years we had a son and by this time, I thought about my child and wanted him to grow up with both parents---which was a big mistake, so we tried to make it work.

While I had all the opportunity in the world to cheat on my ex--I never did, I became a model of the perfect woman, mother and wife and most people never knew anything was wrong. I got interested in children's rights and social issues and politics, leaving me no time to think. My house was spotless, my bills were paid, I was a success on my job, never missed a function at school for my child. I played football with him, taught him the facts of life, instilled values , morals and manners in him, taught him how to treat a woman, played with him and did my house work at night while everyone slept. I was trying to be perfect. I tried to not notice the b/d ,anniversary's,holidays, party's , family get togethers, and all that goes with it. I chocked back the bitter tears of the loneliness and empty feelings that seemed sometimes to be too powerful to carry---I was to the outside world, part of a successful and perfect marriage---but it was a lie. A loveless and sexless marriage was a sentence (for a crime that I had not committed, ) that was trust upon me, took away my self confidence, lower my self esteem and and watched my youth slip through my fingers very quickly and knew that I couldn't go on this way---and no one could fix it but me.

I have been single for almost 4 years now and while I haven't found anyone yet, I still believe that I will. I know that there are decent men on this site and other sites and I will find them. Am I sorry that I stayed--oh yes--very much so. I didn't do my son any favors by staying and putting up a front----because he has gone on with his life and blamed me for breaking up our home--just saying that I should have turned a blind eye to his fathers being unfaithful---taking the blame for the break up and watching the final blow when he moved in with his girl friend of the last 5 years of our marriage. The only person that was hurt was me----I lost years that I could have been happy with someone else, because I didn't want to see anyone hurt, because I wanted out. Watching old friends that we had known for years turn their back on both of us and finally waking up one day and said that's it--I can't go on being a victim. I'm still alone, but try and face each new day with the hope and positive thinking that will bring a wonderful mate into my life and have stopped kicking myself for staying in a lost and doomed marriage just because of what someone else might think. It's one day at a time and with any luck, I will get the brass ring. It is never easy--no matter what the circumstances, to stay and put up with the crap that men and yes women have to go through, for appearance sake---because it doesn't work. Be true to your self and good to yourself--because when the smoke clears--you have no one except yourself and you must love yourself and stand up for yourself---- or everyone will walk all over you. I'm not bitter--just wiser and it has made me stop and think about what is important in my life---and to move on and walk away from any man who does not treat me with the respect that I do deserve. Hang in there girl-friend--the Calvary is on the way.
 ceeceekitty
Joined: 11/6/2006
Msg: 26
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History
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 8:56:14 AM
Op,

I can relate as far as the 24 year marriage..only his role playing was his secret, with the fact he led a secret life and pretended he was single.
Some want their, "Kate and Edith" too.............he wanted; Sook, Jung Su, Chung, and hundreds more, plus many GI Jane's...........

I know the raw, pain, along with the betrayal, can leave you struggling to breathe and rob you of even wanting to move.
Even the smallest things take too much effort, so why try.

Everything he's done is frozen and attached itself to your thoughts and continually plays....a continuous loop..... like a very bad, B movie.
You find yourself trapped in a living nightmare.

I put my efforts into writing.........feelings that I spit out onto paper in hopes of spitting it out of my mind.
I tried to find/figure out the why........make some sense out of something so senseless and needless.
And blamed myself with the...if only;
if only I'd been or if only I'd done.

It wasn't just me.........then I'd tell myself what an idiot I was for believing, hoping caring, loving.

All of his actions left me with feeling of........nothing was ever true or honest in all those years.
A horrible lie......I'd lived a horrible lie.

For me, dealing with the entire mess was akin to a huge cluttered, filthy, nasty, house.
I had to separate it, break it down into sections, and then start cleaning small areas.

Just as that house didn't get that filthy over night, neither does a marriage instantly, turn into crap.

It's OK to lay down and wallow.......important thing is to be able to get up.

I agree with those who suggested divorce care.
My attention span was that of a gnat, so I hardly remembered anything, other than finances and watching a film....
Oh and the young guy who said he was there due to his grandmother's insistence and constant nagging.
My friend has gone 3 or more times.........and it's helped her in different areas of her life.
There are many groups that offer hands.......you only have to reach out to them.

Movies are great too..........comedies, you need to laugh.

You do need to focus on you, be selfish.
I would not date or invite another man into my life until I've take care of and found myself.

Right now, it's OK to crawl in under that comforter, ya just can't stay there too long.
If you need to talk, know, I'm here and only a message away.

God is with you and prayers do get answered.
He has a reason for everything and many times we can't know those reasons.
Put him in charge....and let him handle it.

ceeceekitty
 imnotyourstar
Joined: 1/21/2008
Msg: 27
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 9:10:40 AM
Support groups can help immensly!
 FishOwl
Joined: 12/4/2007
Msg: 28
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 9:19:21 AM

the comfort and security that I knew being married

What kind of security can you possibly have being attached to something unpleasant? That and other questions of similar nature should be what you are asking yourself?

How much of your life was wasted while you were stuck in a self-defeating situation? You learn to be alone by being alone. You learn to do what is necessary, you breathe in and you breathe out. You get out and meet people. Is there a POF group where you live? Do they have events, outings, get-togethers? Try new things. Do you like to write or draw? Is there something you have always wanted to try? Someplace you want to see?

The past can provide fond memories, but you can't live there. Life goes on and really to live you have to go on too.
 helpmeflirt
Joined: 12/27/2005
Msg: 29
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 9:24:22 AM
I am in the same boat you are in. My marriage fizzled out many years ago. We are so different and got married for the wrong reasons. ( I wasn't pregnant) As time went on, I was the one making the money, taking care of 3 kids, running then to sports and activities and other things. We did everything his younger sister did, except build a new house and I had an extra child. I got tired of being second fiddle to his sister. I could use all the support anyone can give me.
I am seperated and in a few weeks, I will be moving to a different town and will be hard to do things with my kids. One of my kids is in the middle and it is really hard on me.
My marriage was hard on me the whole way. We should have divorced after 5 years but I couldn't do that to my kids. Now my youngest one has finally graduated from high school and I am moving on with my life. I have met many people here and they have supported me. Hang in there, time heals but it is slow.
 imacitygirl14
Joined: 7/20/2008
Msg: 30
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 9:26:25 AM
My husband left me after 27 years. I was devastated. After he was gone for 3 months, I made a decision that I was going to be happy. It's a choice. Fortunately, I have always taken care of myself and I am not having any trouble getting dates. I am enjoying my independence after getting married at the age of 18. I try and be optimistic and think of what is to come. Falling in love again, getting married, new memories, etc. Look at the positive and not the negative. I wish you the best of luck and God bless!!!
 veloise
Joined: 1/24/2008
Msg: 31
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History
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 9:51:46 AM
SmilingGem, here's an idea about a couple of fun-loving groups that likely have local connections to you:

--Red Hat Society. Nope, you don't have to be a blue-haired codger. (Those under age 50 wear pink and lavender.) It's like Girl Scouts for grown-ups. The chapter I'm in has turned into great good friends who are available (sometimes on short notice) for a movie, play, concert, or dinner out. The only common denominator is the gender, and they aren't teeny-boppers. You can find a local chapter at the national website redhatsociety dot com.

--Contra dancing. This one is co-ed. No high heels, no make-up, no special fixing up, no partner needed, just go and have a good time. Someone will ask you to dance (a lot of someones, actually) and it'll be three hours of live music, gentle exercise, and MEN HOLDING YOUR HAND. Try googling it with the name of your town or ones nearby (and if that doesn't flush one out, send me a message).

HTH
 CelticKnot
Joined: 3/27/2008
Msg: 32
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 10:19:49 AM
As so many have already said, it will get easier. I was married 31 years, in a similar type of marriage, with no idea my ex had been cheating for years. I had had ample opportunity to cheat on him, but never had. So when he said he wanted to leave me for his girlfriend, it hit me like a Mack truck. I think I cried for 2 days.....then asked myself...so what's so bad about this? I could truly think of nothing. Yes, I still went through the grieving process, but I had a smile, knowing my life was now my own. I even took back my maiden name.

Get a book like "Simple Abundance" for discovering who you are. Women of our age who married young tended to "bury" their wants and feelings, catering to their husbands'. The end result: they lost out on a rich, exciting woman......and our real selves have been stashed in a cave for decades! It's time to get out.....stretch....learn who YOU are! I am having so much fun right now. I haven't dated yet, but heck, that's only ONE of the things I want to do!

Another thing is to be sure you've let go of your ex. Mine did the same thing....took his girlfriend on lots of vacations and started doing things he'd never done for me. At first I was resentful till I realized......I wanted the vacations and dancing and romance......just without him! Ha ha.

Anyway, now is your time. Enjoy it. Explore what YOU like. Don't rush into any relationships until you can bring into them a woman who knows who she is and expresses it. A one sided relationship is no fun, and a relationship where only one person is considered is like an unbalanced seesaw....it's gonna crash. You've been there.....now explore a better world.

Celtic
 MaryAnn Singleton
Joined: 6/6/2008
Msg: 33
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 10:20:40 AM
SmilingGem - I was in a similar situation as you... I was married to my ex for 16.5 years, but we had been living together for 5 years before that.

When a long term relationship ends, it IS like a death and you're right, you have to learn how to live with your new life. There have been a lot of great suggestions here. Personally I found that meeting with a counsellor helped. There are a lot of mixed feelings at the end of a relationship so it's good to get them out and deal with them.

And I agree that you shouldn't try to get into a relationship right away. A rebound will only delay your healing... you need to be alone for a while in order to learn about yourself. I've found that it's kind of like an evolutionary process. At first I was like you, REALLY found it tough to be alone. But now I really like my independence AND my solitude.

One thing. I often find myself saying "I haven't done that for years" and it finally fizzled on me that I'd stopped doing alot of things I like because my ex didn't like them. Or I didn't try things because he wasn't interested. So I think that making a wish list might also be therapeutic.

Another thing. It may sound superficial, but I'm finding that making changes has helped. Getting a new haircut, going for a makeover, trying out new clothes, taking up a new sport - these are all things that will define the new you.

A new life can be scary but it can also be wonderful. Good luck.
 youme2008
Joined: 5/4/2008
Msg: 34
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 10:33:32 AM
Hello smilinggem1;

All is not lost my friend. I left my ex-husband 2 months short of our 30th wedding anniversary. It was very difficult because for the most part we got along, but once I found out about his affair with my best friend I lost all respect & trust in him. It is lonely at times, but hang in there girl. It does get better. It has been 4 yrs and I have met some wonderful people thru my journey, but you know what? the lonliness becomes independence and it isn't all that bad.

Call a girlfriend, call family. Do you have children? My children were angry with me at the beginning, then slowly came around. They are wonderful now. There are some great singles groups to attend, meet new people. You'd be surprised, even people at work will be a good strength for you. Take care, if you need to talk, I am your friend and know what your going thru.

youme
 iggylover
Joined: 7/27/2008
Msg: 35
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 11:20:15 AM
Dear Smiling Gem... keep smiling!
Your day will come when the pain is not felt and you are in a better place. I too was married for a long time (27 years) and my x didn't cheat on me but the verbal and emotional pain for years...the disrespect and feelings of unimportance were just as deep. I was the one who stepped forward after several years of off and on counseling and decided I had had enough... life is short and was not worth living that way. He was surprised and didn't think I would go through with it but I had reached the point where he had killed the feelings I had for him, and my mind was set on the decision for a better life with peace. I have been divorced for 4 years and am very happy with my new found freedom with no intent on getting married again (I'm 53). My life will be a financial struggle but peace and happiness are worth the sacrifice and I love not having to answer to anyone and can do whatever I want. My health has never been that great and that was his main gripe with me... the house was not always spic and span and he would rather complain about how the house looked than lift a finger to help... I really believe he was most of my sickness... I still have my bad days but my health has improved for the most part. He remarried a year and a half ago and is this woman's fourth husband. He has done things for her that he would never do for me, that is the part that has hurt me, that he would do this for a perfect stranger but not for me. I predicted to myself another failure for him within 2 1/2 years as he jumped into the single scene right away after our divorce rather than taking the time to heal. One of our kids made some negative comments about his new wife the other day about how rude and mean she is to him... their relationship is starting to fray as predicted... I don't wish anything bad for him but share this with you to show you there is a happy life for you out there and it does get better with time ...and there is karma... continue to smile and be happy with your decision...it was the right one... :)
 linbloom94
Joined: 6/30/2008
Msg: 36
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 12:05:46 PM
HI, IT'S NOT GOING TO BE EASY. BUT I READ A STORY THAT A WOMAN HAD DIVORCED AT 40 AND REMARRIED AT 81 AND SHE IS LIVING HER LIFE SUPER HAPPY WITH THIS NEW LOVE SO IF IT'S ANY HELP ; BETTER HE LEFT NOW THAN LEAVE YOU AT 81 AND YOU HAVE LESS TIME TO FIND A " GREAT PERSON WHO WILL BE HONEST AND TRUE." ONLINE DATING AND SEEKING CAN BE THE WORST BEAST ALIVE ! BUT IT CAN BRING PEOPLE TOGETHER ; FIND A SITE THAT DO BACKGROUND CHECK ON PERSONS WHOM SIGN UP FOR THESE TYPE OF SERVICES AND THOSE SERVICES ARE CREDITABLE ... I ONLY AM HERE BECAUSE MY COLLEGE INSTRUCTOR ASK ME TO TRY THIS SITE . . .

YES, HE WAS PROBABLY A BEST FRIEND IN THOSE YEARS AND MOST OF ALL HE WAS JUST SOMEONE YOU BECAME FAMILIAR WITH AND STOP BEING FRIENDS LONG AGO ; HEY GO GET THIS BOOK AT BORDERS BOOK STORE ; CALLED ; BEST GIRLFRIENDS GUIDE TO A BREAK UP ; GET A BREAK UP BUDDY
OR GET THE BOOK ; IT'S BROKEN THAT'S WHY THEY CALL IT A "BREAK UP."

LOOK HOT STUFF YOU ARE NOT ALONE AND ALL OF HERE HAVE BROKEN UP AFTER GIVING TIME, MONEY, CHILDREN, LOVE, DEVOTION AND IT GOT FORSAKEN OR WOULD WE BE NO ! SO PLENTYOFFISH PEOPLE OUT THERE ; ENCOURAGE HER AND ALL OTHERS LIKE HER .

HERE ; DO SOME THINGS YOU WOULD NOT OF DONE WITH HIM OR HE DID NOT LIKE TO DO ; GO DO IT NOW ;

GO PLAY WITH SMALL CHILDREN THEY ARE SO ACCEPTING OF ALL PEOPLE



MAKE UP RING TONES ON YOUR PHONE TO DISCOURAGE YOU FROM CALLING HIM AND LEAVING MESSAGES; THOSE MESSAGES WILL ONLY MAKE YOU SAD

BE TRUE TO YOU NOW

GO DO YOUR HAIR AND FEET ; PAINT THEM A CRAZY COLOR HE HATES

DON'T LOOK FOR SOMEONE ELSE FOR AT LEAST 1/2 THE TIME YOU WERE MARRIED ; THATS THERAPIST SUGGESTIONS ; NOT MINE

REPLACE HIM WITH YOU ;
 angeleyes60
Joined: 7/1/2008
Msg: 37
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 12:23:35 PM
Hi
Just wanted to say sorry things turned out the way they did for you but count yourself lucky,i don't mean that in a rude way,but after 12 years off marrage i found out my hubby was into kids ages 13&14 ,he said they where the best age because they could be trained to do what he wanted ,when he wanted it,i found out because i got a email from a 14 year old by mistake and i went to the Police and told on him ,and i loved him dearly ,now thats a bad ending to a marrage ,i would have rether found out he was dating a man then that. so you need to do like the rest off use suck it up and go on with your life no matter what don't let him win,i know i won't i want to enjoy my life to the fullest and i won't let what he did stop me .so hang in there and you can do it.
 DOODLE377
Joined: 7/30/2008
Msg: 38
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/5/2008 12:44:02 PM
If i did not know better I would think you were writting about me. I am 43 and facing the death of a 24 year marriage as of october. How strange is that. I too have had all the issues as you. I am still struggling with the lonliness and the constant chaning emotions. I am serious, it is to real. It sounds like I wrote your story only difference is it is mine. My friends pulled away too, but it was because most of my friends were his friends wives and of course no one wants to get involved.

The guys all stick together and the women followed there husbands. One thing that really hurts me is when our old friends that we traveled and did things with, now do the same things with him and his younger woman. The wives don't like her but go along to please there husbands because of him. It really sucks, belive me I know. For me this has been going on for 4 years. we are still married, but he moved out 4 years ago and does not want the divorce. He keeps calling me and coming around. It is a lot easier if they just move and and don't look back. It is hard when they are still in your face all the time.

It really keeps you on a roller coaster ride. What is it with men and turning 40 and there mid life crises. The grass is not greener on the other side and everything new will to get old and lose its sparkle. Most men are just willing to take the chance anyway and at our expense. Like one of the gentlmen said in a reply. She will get tired of him and find someone new as well. A person to do that kind of thing has no respect for anyone or anything, and what goes around does come around.

I too wish you lots of luck and I am right there with you. You deffinetly are not the only one going through it. It is just so weird how our ages and length of marriage and all are so similar. People can give lots of advice, but every situation is a little different and people are different. You just have to find what works for you, but it will not hurt to try some of the suggestions. what do you have to lose?
 ponytailoftx
Joined: 2/20/2008
Msg: 39
view profile
History
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/7/2008 9:47:45 PM
Thanks for posting this thread SmilingGem ... I needed to read it and all of the great comments you've received.

I'm in a similar situation and trying to figure out who I am now that I'm no longer a wife. It is really difficult to rediscover your individuality once it has been consumed ... I'm very much trying to look at it as a new adventure and hopefully, one that will be more successful than the last one! LOL

Best wishes to you and as you can see from the comments here ... "we" are not alone! Chin up ... turn the frown upside down ... we are gonna be just fine!
 SmilingGem1
Joined: 6/13/2008
Msg: 40
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/8/2008 9:53:29 AM
You are all so kind and many of you have shared some great wisdom....

Its been almost three months since that day when my world crashed in around me, and although the progress is slow, I am taking it one day at a time.

I have been reading many books, especially self help books, trying to figure out what things I want to work on to make me a happier person with me.

I realize that even if Mr. Right came along, I have to love me first.....

Its hard, and its painful. I just try not to think about him or the marriage or the things that have been lost, but instead I am trying to focus on me and what I want for my own healing and growth.
 *in*spired
Joined: 3/4/2008
Msg: 41
Death of a 24 yr Marriage
Posted: 8/8/2008 10:08:22 AM
Among other things, try to remember back before being married; when you knew only single and life was great. Even if you go as far back as a kid. Remember? You can play now and be free to experience life anew. Meditate on the things you've wanted to do that marriage refrained you from doing. Do you remember? It's in you, that solitary self magic, that makes life a wonderland of possibility! Remember?

Best to ya!
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