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After The Divorce

Not So Easy

For Men…

by Coco Diong

I think most women believe that men fare better after divorce than we do.  However, many do not cope as well as women think they do when a marriage fails.  According to the following comments, some men are traumatized emotionally and scarred for a time.Most of the men interviewed for this article seemed to not be able to grasp what really went wrong in their marriages.  Many admitted to not knowing how to express love or cherish their wives when they had them.

              John – 38 – “You have a lovely family, great kids and a wife whom you think loves you no matter what you do and a lovely home.  Then suddenly, you’re left with nothing.  When my wife first left me, I couldn’t talk to my kids or my buddies on the phone without crying.  I realized too late that I took her for granted, and she got fed up.”

Mark – 36 – “There are those who assume because you are a divorced man you couldn’t have loved your children, but my kids were the reason I hung in as long as I did.  I was miserable there with my kids and am miserable now without them.  I realized too late that I had married a woman I didn’t really love, and the kids end up suffering for it.”

Don – 40 – “When divorce papers arrived unexpectedly at my office, I had to move in with an old friend from the Army.  I really didn’t miss my home until I didn’t have it anymore.  Suddenly, all the things that got on my nerves at home seemed utopia-like.  I felt like my arms had been cut off and I had to learn to live without them.  But now I’ve come to a place where I cherish my freedom, but it wasn’t easy getting here.”

Curt – 34 – “When my wife and I split up, she left me for another man.   I felt like a failure and always found myself wondering what was wrong with me.  After that, no matter how well a woman treated me, I could never trust her.  I felt betrayed by someone whom I’d  entrusted my heart to.  It took me a long time to overcome the fear of trusting again.”

Ed – 43 – “When my wife divorced me, I felt like my manhood had been stripped.  I’ve never felt so empty in my life.  I didn’t really notice my wife until she wasn’t there anymore.  I was married twenty years and never bought my wife a gift.”

Joe – 41 – “On the day my divorce was granted, I was on a Caribbean island with a woman I had been seeing before my wife and I broke up.  When I called home and got the news, I became so upset that I had to leave the island that night.  Suddenly, I didn’t feel like the same person anymore.  Half of me was gone.  It was something about the divorce that made me feel like a loser.  I broke up with the woman I’d been seeing for years and pursued my wife until she consented to marry me again.  Unfortunately, I’m still waiting.”

Sam – 38 – “When I left home, I discovered what loneliness meant.  I experienced depression and anxiety after initiating the divorce.  I had taken my home for granted, and the loss that I eventually felt could not be fixed by anyone else I encountered.  It took me two years to get over something that felt like a travesty.”

Howard – 35 – “I learned from my divorce that I had to learn how to treat a woman differently or risk being alone the rest of my life.  I was abusive verbally, because I took all of my frustrations out on my wife.  I kept it all in during the day and let it out on her when I got home.”

Art – 35 – “With me, money became a tremendous emotional issue.  Though my divorce was my idea, I became very bitter when I had to maintain two households.  I resented sending her money every month and I shorted my kids because of it.”

Carl – 40 – “I’ve been divorced two years and I haven’t overcome my feelings yet.  I still feel abandoned even though I left.  I’m still grieving the loss though I work well to hide it.  My ex-wife lost a certain amount of freedom because she’s raising the children, but I’ve lost a sense of belonging.  Women are accustomed to managing without support.  That’s why they fare better after divorce than we do.”

Steve – 36 – “With all the problems I have with the women in my life who resent my close relationship with my kids.  I’m sorry I ever got divorced.  When I look back, I think counseling would have helped me tremendously.  At the time I was married, I felt my wife’s needs were exhausting and unrealistic.  But now I know, she was just a normal woman with normal needs.”

Bob – 47 “As soon as I realized that I didn’t love my wife anymore, I was ready to go.  I don’t understand how people live together year after year, and have no feelings for each other.  My friend and his wife have been married fifteen years and have not been intimate in five years.  He claims that though he no longer loves his wife, he can’t leave her because she couldn’t handle it emotionally.  My wife tried to commit suicide when I told her I was leaving, but now she’s remarried and appears happy.  And most importantly, I feel better.”

Rick – 41 – “When I left my wife, I tried to pay off everything and gave her more money than I could afford to give because I felt so guilty.  But it didn’t help.  That was five years ago and I still feel guilty because we had two kids, but there’s nothing I want to do about it.”

Tom – 39 – “I didn’t really find myself until I got a divorce.  I was tied to my wife like a clone and when we separated, I discovered I had an uniqueness that was never apparent.  I spent the whole of my married life doing to accommodate the family and their wants.  I wasn’t selfish enough.  If I had been, I’d still be married now and happier.  I never want to be that tied to a person again.  Sometimes there’s too much togetherness required to be together.”

Facts About Divorce

<            78% of all divorces are initiated by women.  The most common cause is mental cruelty followed by excessive adultery.

<            When men ask for divorce it’s more likely due to a significant relationship with another woman.

<            Men are more likely to remarry and marry faster – than women.  Over half of divorced men remarry in five to eight years.

<            After six years, less than half of divorced women have remarried.

<            More than half of the men ordered to pay child support are currently in arrears

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