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Divorced with children

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When a couple with minor children get divorced, they are required to take a Divorce Education for Parents Course. When I attended one of these classes seven years ago, I was told that the divorce rate for second marriages is higher than that of first marriages. There seem to be a couple of reasons for this. According to the instructor of my class, statistically, men tend to re-marry quickly after divorce, thereby, perhaps not allowing themselves enough time to heal from the trauma of divorce and possibly rushing into a marriage that may not have been ideal otherwise. Secondly, the majority of second marriages involve children from other spouses and combining families is a challenge in itself.

Luckily, my family seems to be beating the odds. I am very, very fortunate that my ex-husband married a wonderful woman named Tara. Tara adores my children and they absolutely love her. Many women may say, "Well, doesn't that make you jealous?" To which I say, "Hell, no!" Firstly, I am very confident in my role as my children's mother. I think that is key. I know they love me and I am not threatened by them caring for another woman. In fact, why would a mother want it any other way? I am comforted by the fact that when my children are with their father, they are well cared for by a woman who truly thinks of them as her own.

Think of it this way: what if my ex-husband married a woman who chain smokes, hangs out in bars and hates children? How terrible would that be for my kids? Instead, I have someone who I have come to consider a good friend. Someone who attends school functions with me, sits with me at baseball games, shares the carpooling and is willing to discuss parenting strategies as issues arise. Tara and I have the same goal in mind: to raise happy, healthy children who will become successful, self-assured adults capable of having healthy, loving relationships.

I've heard so many horror stories about crazy ex-wives and ex-husbands still clinging to a marriage that ended long ago. It can be heartbreaking, because the bottom line is that it is the children who suffer. When my ex-husband and I decided to co-parent our children after the divorce and really realized that it is their welfare that comes first, we were able to let go of most of the nastiness that comes with divorce. We were able to go our separate ways and have good lives, definitely better lives than we would have had had we stayed married, and yet still be good parents together. I see so many broken families who seem to have forgotten that the children didn't ask to grow up in broken homes.

And no matter how amicable your divorce may be, I really believe it has some negative effects on the kids. Whether the trauma of divorce outweighs the trauma of growing up in a home with unhappy parents, I don't know. But maybe the outcome can be less stressful for them if the adults could all get along.

Looking at the big picture, I really want my ex-husband to be happy and I'm sure he feels the same for me. Just because it didn't work out for us doesn't mean we don't deserve to be loved and to be in love. And our children, above all else, deserve to be happy.

Short URL: http://www.communityadvocate.com/?p=2781

Posted by on Jun 27 2008. Filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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