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I was married for 22 years. The marriage ended years ago. I should have left then but was scared of trying to raise 3 kids on my own. So I stayed. There has been no marriage to speak of in years. My divorce is very recent. Even though I wanted the divorce and I left, it has been very painful. I don't understand that. My biggest fear has been the thought of spending the rest of my life alone now. So when I met this guy, I jumped right in and ended up crushed. I know now that was a stupid thing to do, but it still hurts especially each time I see him. In the divorce I lost pretty much all my friends. I don't want to feel sorry for myself, I just want to go on with life, but I don't know how. Can anyone tell me how I get through this?

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I think what you are going through is very painful. Despite the marriage being lost, it was 22 years of your life and that is something that is not going to just move on with ease, especially from an emotional standpoint. Breakups, whether they are a marriage or a long-term relationship affect both parties involved and to feel resentment, sadness, anger, etc... is a natural part of the process. Even if there was no emotional attachment lets say, that was 22 years of something you were used to. To have that suddenly just be done with, is a shock despite how liberating it may be and it'll take time to adjust.


The question of course, is how do you adjust to this in a positive manner? Well, we all know it is not going to be easy at times, but I think having a support network of friends and family is a good start. Expressing your feelings and emotions either through words, songs, writing is only going to promote the healing process. For some, therapy or counseling is another alternative. I'm a proponent of getting to the crux of an issue or problem and taking the necessary steps to correct it -which involves patience and consistency. "Quick fix" methods are something that I just don't buy. My point is that I don't believe in masking a problem whether it is through drugs, alcohol, medication, rebound relationships etc. because like I hinted to earlier - they just don't correct the problem at hand.


I agree with you in that having a relationship so quick after your divorce wasn't the best idea because the emotional sensitivity and baggage are just too great to correctly deal with something new - particularly a new relationship. Like many people have stated on here, what you have to do is get active and take part in recovering you. Of course, you should and ought to cry or punch a wall when it comes to that. This is a multi-stage process and you need to allow yourself to release all the bad that is bottled up inside you. My only thing is that don't do these things and neglect bettering yourself. Going to the gym or taking up a new hobby for example is great and helps with the healing process, but it is by no means going to make you better at dealing with future relationships. In time, you will have to examine yourself and how you approached your marriage. What did you do right? What was wrong? What needs to be corrected? I think when you look at the marriage and yourself from an objective standpoint and choose to be commited to making positive change in your life, then that is when you are on the verge of healing. Will it be lonely, sure at times, but treat it as time for yourself that you haven't had for so long. Treat is as a new beginning - a better one. True, it can take a long time and that is okay. Don't get in the habit of convincing yourself that you are fine and emotionally healthy. So many have done that on here and ultimately fall back to ground zero. Granted, everyone is different and the healing process will vary, but it will have to take time. People may claim to change overnight, but is that change a permament part of their character? Unlikely, if they haven't taken the time to work at it.


Good luck.

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Hi there. First, congratulations for having the strength to end an unhappy marriage after so many years.


I personally don't have experience in this but my mother divorced my dad after 25 years and your post reminded me of some of the same things she used to say. She ended it but it took her years to get over it. She used to say that it takes half the life of the relationship to get over the breakup (she read it somewhere). That seemed true for the first couple of years- she couldn't stop talking about him: how much she hated him , what is he doing now, etc.. Turns out it was only those years. She is great now and so happy she divorced. She dated and went through one mini-relationship just like you described. She was needy and alone. However, now she dates once in awhile and otherwise just enjoys a very happy, lively life.


I think if she could speak to you she would recommend getting on with your OWN life. Forget men for awhile. Join (or start) a book club or whatever makes sense in your area. I don't know where you live but my mom joined a hiking club she loves. She also became active in local community events. She has more friends now than she ever has and seems happier than I've ever seen her.


I imagine how hard this is for you and I hope you can just "survive" this period in your life so you can get to the best part that focuses only on you. Just hang in there.


take care!

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Thank you both for your replys. It wasn't an easy decsion for me to leave, even though i was miserable and there was absolutely on intamacy. Hasn't been in 10 years. I knew it would affect my kids which it has. They were the reason I stayed the last 10 years, so they had both parents. I still don't know if that was a mistake or not. Would thay have been better off if I had left when they were kids instead of wating until they were older? They know I was miserable, but they still can't understand why now after all these years I would leave.


My divorce was fianlized 4 days after my 22 anniversary. I have had some counceling. I have been told that a divorce is like a death and you have to go through a process.... anger, grief, denial etc. It just seems like I can't get past where I am. I don't regret leaving, it's all just so strange. I have joined a gym and go workout, it helps a little. But most of the time, I stay home alone and cry. I know crying is a release, but it just doesn't seem to stop.


I don't even know how to meet new people, friends. All my friends are married and with the divorce, I think they think it is contagious. They avoid me. That hurts alot too. People have told me go to bars, I don't drink and I don't think meeting someone there would be in my best interest right now.


I am just so lost right now. I was glad i found this forum, talking does seem to help, it's a way to vent.


Ironically, I don't hate him, even though he put me through a lot of abuse. I know he has issues. Nobody knows him like I do after 22 years.


Thanks again for listening and responding..........

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Hey urbangurl,


Welcome on enotalone! You must have gone through an awful lot the last years. Something tells me it takes a strong person to leave an unhappy marriage and take care that the children are taken care of as good as possible given the circumstances. Of course it feels strange and empty. It won't feel that way forever, you just need to adjust to the new life-situation and that takes time. There is no 'norm' for that, I think everyone has their own sort of clock for things like this.


I was going to suggest joining a swimming club or gym, but I see you already did so. Now I am just going to advice you to MAKE yourself go there, and get more close to the ladies there. Many people are going through divorces, and all of them need extra/new friends for comfort. I don't necessarily see why your 'friends' are avoiding you. Maybe they are solving their own (marital) problems and feel like you alreay have enough on your plate. Call them and ask them, then at least you know. This way you can avoid becoming paranoid of the silence of your friends. They might want to avoid standing between you and your ex.


The mother of my close friend is divorced and she is an active member of a chior. If you like music and singing, this might be an idea for you too. Music can be really healing, in other ways than sports.



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I wish someone out there had all the answers. The one I'd really like to know is how long? How long before the pain goes away? How long before I can stop crying? How long before I stop feeling so vunerable? How long before I feel like living again?


But I know nobody can tell me that...................

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