Divorce is an ugly and catastrophic personal experience. In the thick of divorce, you get a glimpse behind the curtain and see people’s true selves. If you have been there, you know the destruction two people can do to one another. But despite the tears and screaming matches, you can survive divorce and actually find happiness. You have to find a way to let go of the past and move forward, learning from what you have been through. The next relationship may be scary, the possibility of finding a happily ever after could be dismal. But finding happiness is worth the risk of letting someone in.
I have had conversations with people who survived divorce, and most say they would never want to marry again and risk it. They would never put themselves through that again. That is incredibly sad to me. I withstood divorce and came out on the other side, so I thought I would give you a few reasons why you shouldn’t give up on love or marriage after divorce…
Here are eight reasons your second marriage can be better than your first…
1. You are older and wiser
Most of us grow wiser as we get older. We go through periods of self-exploration and personal growth, eventually figuring out who we are meant to be. When I got married the first time, I didn’t know who I was. I honestly didn’t have a clue about the person I would become in the next 10 or 15 years. As I have gotten older, I have started to figure it out. Learning more about myself has made me a wiser person who knows what I want in life. You shouldn’t be afraid of growth, and you and your partner should grow together.
2. You know what you want out of a partner
You aren’t looking for someone who is perfect and without flaws. By now, you have found out there is no such thing. Now you know what you can live with and what you can’t live without. So, by the time the second marriage rolls around, you know what kind of person you want to marry. You know what things you want out of your spouse. You have higher standards and don’t want to marry someone with whom you aren’t willing to spend your life.
3. You know what marriage is like; the good, bad, and the really ugly
Having survived divorce, you know every day isn’t going to be daisies. You are fully aware there will be days when you fight and don’t get along. There are days you have to put in more effort. There are days you are in complete bliss. The difference is this time around, you begin your marriage without rose colored glasses. You ditch the unrealistic promises and you look at one another on your wedding day and promise to endure the good and the bad that you know is inevitable. You go into your second marriage wide awake and ready.
4. You have figured out marriage is a choice
You have lived the struggle, you have been through the worst case relationship scenario. So, you begin your second marriage knowing love is a choice. You know you have to show up every day and make the choice to be there in every way for your spouse. Marriage is waking up every day of your life together and choosing your spouse. Through the fights and stubbornness and everything in between, you still promise to choose them every day.
5. You are more yourself
One thing I have realized through the whole messy process of divorce is the fact that I don’t know if my ex really ever knew me as a person. When I first got married, I was only 18 years old. I was completely naive about what loving someone really meant. I tried very hard for a long time to be who he wanted me to be and not who I actually was. I hid parts of myself that he didn’t like and felt like being me wasn’t okay. This time around I am completely myself. I went into this marriage not being afraid to be who I am. At this age, you know who you are and you want someone who is going to love you for you.
6. You know you can’t change your spouse
Maybe you tried to change your partner the first time around. But people are who they are, they change and grow but, essentially if someone is an ass, they will always be an ass. You can’t always mend the broken and you can’t make someone grow a heart. In your second marriage, you have to take on what you can handle. You stop assuming it’s going to get better because marriage can be ugly. Marry the person you want to go through the ugly with.
7. You know how hard THE END really is
You have survived the death of a marriage and because of that, you begin this marriage with the confidence that you will give it everything you have to never be there again. You know the pain of divorce and you know what happens if you don’t give your spouse your all every day. Having lived through divorce you can really really appreciate marriage.
8. Marriage #1 changed you
You look at life differently now and that’s okay. You have seen how awful people can be and how someone you promise to love can be your complete demise. You have seen what happens when people get lazy or people stop trying. You have seen more than some have and it changes you. Let that change help you grow and move forward.
I know not every scenario ends this way. But I grew up a child of divorce and I have seen first marriages fall to shreds. And I lived through mine. But, I have also seen first marriages go the distance. My point is, just because your marriage failed does not in any way make you incapable of love. Divorce doesn’t mean you won’t get your happily ever after. Now you know how to fight for your happily ever after every day. Like all experiences in life, you learn from the bad parts of your life and you move on. Don’t give up on how amazing love can be.
Comments on Second marriage is not a dirty word: finding new love and marriage after divorce
Chiming in here to say that I married a divorced man and I completely agree with all of these. I was 22 and he was 30, and he had pretty much sworn off women in the wake of his divorce. But we couldn’t ignore the chemistry and were married a year later. I have never met another man who has been more appreciative, honest, and willing to work hard to find compromise. Part of this is his upbringing in general, but I believe a large part of it comes of his experiences in his first marriage. And he says all of the time he’s never been happier with his family life.
That’s so awesome! I think second marriages have this stigma like “well you couldn’t make it work once”… but that’s not the case.. I think because we have failed we love and fight harder and know whats to come. I think its an advantage to have been through something as awful as divorce because you appreciate happiness. Thanks for sharing and congrats on your marriage! =)
I married a divorced man. He and his ex-wife were together for a few years before marrying, but only stayed married for 2 years. They parted amicably and are still friends, though distant ones. There was 20 years between his first marriage and ours.
I was hesitant because he was divorced, but was chided by a friend of the family as she had a beautiful marriage to, and family with, a divorced man. Her remarks eliminated any lingering unease.
We’ve been together for 11 years in January and were married in October of 2014. Best choice I ever made.
That’s so awesome! Congrats
Thank you for this post! I’m currently waiting for my marriage #1 divorce to be finalized and while I know some of my older friends who have been through divorce swear off getting married again, I look forward to potentially meeting someone and getting married again. I agree that already my outlook on life has changed and I feel like when (if) I am getting married again, I will treat it differently than my first.
You definitely will go into the next knowing what you need/want and knowing what hard times are… makes the good so much better!
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