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I have been married and divorced 4 times so I should be some sort of expert. All I can say is that each one was different from the other.
I met my first husband in college when we both lived at home with our parents and I became very close to his who had always wanted a daughter. When the marriage came to an end after 5 years we managed to remain friends after some counseling during our seperation. We remained friends until the death of his mother when my husband and I moved out of town and we lost track after a while. We joked that we had always made better brother and sister than husband and wife.
No. 2 looked really good on paper and turned out to be a disaster. When I left my only request of him was that he never contact me again. He didn't for several years until his father was dying and he called for him. After that he kept up with where I lived and contacted me about every couple of years when he was drunk to apologize. I finally told him that I would be happy to talk with him if he ever got sober. His cousin called me a couple of years ago to let me know he had died and left me his Navy life insurance policy.
Marriage #3 lasted 18 years and I finally sought therapy thinking I could find a way to save it. Going into therapy and to support groups such as Codependents Anonymous was the best thing I have ever done. It did not save the marriage but I learned that I can't make another person happy but another person can certainly make me miserable if I allow it. I finally filed for divorce and he acted like the injured party. He tried to pull some financial stuff with the divorce which he blamed on his attorney. In the end he was supposed to pay me $300 month which they called alimony so he could claim it on income tax but was actually to repay a loan. He quit paying with 6 months to go and I decided it wasn't worth the fight.
No. 4 was my college sweetheart who suddenly reappeared in my life. It seemed it was meant to be. I really didn't want to get married but it seemed important to him and I understood because of his family history. I was so grateful for the lessons I had already learned because when he started to come up with things I needed to do for him to be "happy" I decided to get out. It got pretty bad for a while because it made him very angry, but I tried my best to stay as calm as possible. He had inherited his grandmother's house in a very small town and he wanted me to move there with him. I knew I would be miserable there and I tried spending weekends there for a couple of years before ending the relationship. A month after I filed for divorce the house burned down with all of my belongings there. That told me I had made the right decision. I have not seen him or had any conversation with him since I made the arrangements for him to pick up his belongings at my house. That was almost 10 years ago.
I have done a lot of work on myself in the area of forgiveness.both of them and myself for making some bad choices. After I have reached the point of forgiveness I am able to look back and enjoy the blessings that each relationship brought and the important lessons that I learned from each. Right now I don't think relationships are meant to last forever and their goal is that we should learn something from each one.