Unexpected Sweetness

Oct 04, 2010

At the age of 22, I married the man I was head over hills for. He was charming and handsome. He swept me off my feet. I wanted to do anything to make him happy. We were the perfect couple, I thought, and though I saw some of his faults and weaknesses, I had some too, and I knew we could work on them together.

Not long after our wedding, things began getting rocky. His “weaknesses” I had noticed while we were dating, were no longer just weaknesses, but they began to be serious problems in our marriage. He would belittle me and my family so much that eventually, the relationships with me and my sisters were destroyed. He also used guilt and mind games to control and manipulate me to get his way. Eventually, the mental and verbal abuse thrust me into a deep depression.

I moved in with my parents four months after our first year anniversary. He initiated the divorce, and a few short months later, it was final.

It was difficult moving back home to a small town where everyone knew everyone. And it was difficult moving back home where 95% of the town was quite religious and unsupportive of divorce. Or at least that’s what I thought. I felt like an outcast, like I was walking around with a red D painted on my forehead, like I had leprosy and no one wanted to associate with me for fear they would catch it too.

But I was wrong. More people were members of the divorce community than I knew. People would approach me, tell me their parents were divorced, or a sibling, or a best friend, and that they were sorry for my situation. They still loved me. They were compassionate. They encouraged me to stay strong in the church, to turn to the Lord in my suffering, and to continue building my life.

Probably the most difficult part of becoming divorced, however, was the loneliness. Though my husband had not been a kind and loving support to me, he had still been my companion. And I was lonely without the companionship. I wanted someone to talk to about my day, about the successes of my students, or the challenges they were to me. I wanted someone to be excited about my progress, and compassionate about my pains. Eventually, I began turning to the Lord for that companionship. For the first time in my life, I did not pray for the things that I wanted and to give thanks for the things I had. I prayed to tell Him how I was feeling: how I was pleased with Jose’s English improvements or how I wasn’t quite sure how to get Estiven to pay better attention in class. I told him about Kaylee, in broken English, making a funny comment about Luis’s hair and how I laughed and laughed. And though it wasn’t a two-sided dialogue, I felt my relationship grow with the Lord as I treated Him more like a Being involved in my life, my companion, rather than a distant something watching over me.

My depression had been diagnosed as situational depression, and once the circumstances were removed, I was able to slowly pull out of it and find self-worth and happiness again. During this healing, the Lord also played a significant role in helping me realize my potential. He sent small messages to me reaffirming my significance to Him.

Time passed and one day, I ran into an old friend from High School. He was a few years younger than me, and he had just returned home from a serving a mission for the LDS church in Brazil. We began spending time together, and eventually, he asked me to be his wife. I chose to marry him, and now, years later, we are raising children and progressing in life. I could not be happier with how my life is now. I don’t think I would appreciate it enough had I not experienced my first marriage. I truly had to know the bitter to know the sweet. And it truly is sweet.

 

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Comments

Jennifer Hoff on 10/05/2010
My story is very similar to this one, except the remarriage and kids part! :) It's so sad when only one partner is working on things! I'm sorry for the grief you had to go through and the depression. It's so true about appreciating the good things more once you've been on the other side of things. Thank you so much for sharing.

Melissa on 10/07/2010
Thank you so much for your post! I have suffered through the same grief and depression after my fiance abruptly left me a year and a half ago. It was a terrible place to be but now I've come to see it is for the best. I'm working my way through the loneliness, but I know that this experience will make me a better wife and mother someday. It truly has been the best gift I have ever received in a very weird sort of way. :)

Melissa Holz on 10/08/2010
Just went on here and saw my address was posted... I was wondering if that could be removed. Thanks!

TristanLynn on 10/10/2010
You are a beautiful writer. I'm sorry that you had to go through so much pain to get to your happy ending. I'm glad that you are able to appreciate your marriage, and that you know what a marriage should really be. Molly, I love this site. I don't usually comment, but it was especially helpful for me to know I wasn't/am not alone in my grief. Tristan Hines 737 S State St apt B Provo, UT 84606

MaK on 10/12/2010
My story is almost exactly the same...had I been married with children I would have thought I wrote this and sent it in my dreams. It is amazing the experiences we have that we think nobody else can understand or comrehend and they bring us humility we need to grow closer to Heavenly Father. Thank you for sharing, it helps to hear that I am not the only person who felt like I had a huge red D on my forehead or that I wasn't the only person who felt such loneliness after leaving a companion regardless of his actions towards me. We're never alone.

Dyanna on 01/29/2011
Reading this post gave me such a relief to know I'm not alone. I was only 20 when I left my husband and 21 by about 3 weeks when my D was final. I moved back with my parents to a small town. My husband acted the exact same way yours did. Belittling, "weaknesses", mind games, etc. I know divorces are common but when you're in the situation you feel "O but know one has had a situation like mine. No one truly knows how I'm feeling." I couldn't help but cry a little bit knowing that there was a situation almost completely identical to mine. I also had depression and anxiety but I've been able to overcome it and move on with my life. I'm not re-married or even dating for that matter but I am living on my own and I'm so excited. I haven't regretted my decision one bit. I have grown so much and learned so much about myself! Thank you for posting this. Just another stepping stone of healing.

Sharon kaylor on 04/23/2011
Its hard to admit you are in a bad Marriage,took me 12 years of torment to finally gain the strength,with the help of a awesome friend and the church.My son 13 took a lot of the verbal abuse,i finally had to stand up to my husband,to protect my son.We started over again with nothing but our love for each other.We are finally healthy and safe.I never gave of hope things could get better.


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