A friendly divorce can actually be done

The end of a marriage doesn’t need to be the end of a friendship

BETTY SMITH

Divorce. Wikipedia describes divorce as “a dissolution of marriage, the process of terminating a marital union.” But does that mean you need to terminate the friendship? 

Divorce is never a word that one wants to say or hear when in a committed marriage. Whether you are on the receiving end or you’re the one saying it, it is never a good feeling. I was the person who said the word to my husband of 10 years. I played a million scenarios in my head of how things would play out once I uttered that one hurtful word: divorce. I never wanted to be that person who hurt my spouse so deeply. I still loved him greatly. I respected him more than I ever respected anyone and I certainly didn’t want our friendship to end.  

The love I had for my husband changed over the years as I grew and learned about myself.  This included what my needs were, where I wanted to be in my life, and the things that were important to me. These differences and what I wanted didn’t align with what was important to him and what he wanted for his life.  

So now what? One can choose to be angry, remain hurt, and be spiteful—no one likes to feel rejected or tossed away. Or one can choose compassion, to really listen to your partner, and to navigate and create a positive outcome from your broken relationship. We chose compassion and understanding. Friendly divorce can be a choice. It’s not an easy choice to be sure, but it can be accomplished.

We have divided all our assets in what we decided was a fair way. Each of us is coming out with a logical division of assets and liabilities. We had two sets of furniture, so we each kept a set. He makes more money than I do, so he remained in our home. I realistically could not afford or even qualify on my own to keep our home, so that choice made sense. I left with no debt. We have two pets, and we have decided to “co-parent” our fur babies. It’s a logical division that made sense to us and was fair to both of us.  

Today, we celebrate important dates like birthdays, holidays, accomplishments, or a silly thing one of our fur babies did. And when I got a totally amazing job opportunity, he was the first person I wanted to tell. We still support one another, help each other out, and remain close friends. My love changed for him, but it was never lost. I cannot imagine it any other way.


Featured Image: Divorce doesn’t have to mean the end of a friendship, just the end of a marriage. | Pixabay

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