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My Divorce Diary: Why Did I Get Married?: A Cautionary Tale (not a Tyler Perry movie review)

The Wedding Day. Off to a flying start.



I gotta be honest, I wrote this blog weeks ago, but just didn't have the courage to post it. So here it goes….



Why Did I Get Married? : A Cautionary Tale


Every death needs a post mortem. Everyone always wants to know why. Why did someone or something die? What led up to its demise? Sometimes the answer is simple, other times, not so much.


I conducted a post mortem on my marriage sometime ago and closed the case with a big "Unknown Causes" stamp. But that probably isn't the full truth.


The truth is my marriage had a low chance of survival from the beginning. Two well intentioned people get married after having an unplanned baby relatively early on in their relationship. You don't have to be Dr. Phil to see where that is headed.


My motivation for getting married was not a love story but a "do the right thing" story that over time just didn't have enough true love to keep it alive. I used to say that I got married for my child. After all, we were both very committed to family and giving it our best try for the sake of our baby. There was nothing more that I wanted for my little girl than for her to have what I had, two parents in the same home. And to rob her of that without an earnest try just didn't seem right.


He sold me on the idea even when I was reticent, saying we should just "jump in" and "make it work." It seemed like the right thing at the time.


Years later, I know that my other motivation was my own shame. Pregnant. Abandoned by the father. Ouch! Those who follow me, know that story (for the new arrivals, you can get a not so brief recap here). I realize now that I believed getting married would fix my pain. "See, I'm not worthy of being abandoned, look! he married me in the end." And that I could right my "wrong" (another unwed mother statistic) with "I do."


The deep love feelings would come with time, would come with commitment, would come from focusing on a shared goal, I said. And what's all the hoopla over the warm and fuzzy love feelings anyway???


I could fix this.


And so on a beautiful November day we went to Edinburgh, Scotland for a nicely planned private ceremony and got married. We told nobody. The photographer we hired and his wife were our witnesses. After the ceremony, my husband sent a text message, of all things, to his family notifying them of our nuptials.  


For a few years, we made it work. But I was always jealous of those couples who had that real, deep love for each other. The ones that can't keep their hands off each other, who look at each other with piercing eyes. Did I think I didn't deserve that? I wanted that so badly.


In retrospect, I probably resented my husband for not feeling for me in that way.  And that was unfair. I knew that wasn't our thing going in. That wasn't our story.


When I closed the case on my post morten, I still felt good that we gave it a try. I owed that to my daughter and then my son, and would have continued on in my "strange love" marriage for their sakes for many years.


Perhaps he did me a favor in setting me free. I have yet to cry for any lost love, only a lost father for my children.


And I'm still hoping that one day a man will look at me deeply the way my husband never did.

7 Responses to “My Divorce Diary: Why Did I Get Married?: A Cautionary Tale (not a Tyler Perry movie review)”
  1. Sarah says:

    Hi Kimberly,

    Thank you A MILLION times for this!!

    Let me start off with a brief blurb of how I was introduced to you: I have a 10 month old son (as well as a 10 year old son) and while I was pregnant with the little one I came across your book in Borders and picked it up on my way out of town on a long train ride. I fell in love with it when I realized that we were in similar situations in that I found myself pregnant with a boyfriend I had only been with for a short period of time. And early into the pregnancy we broke up. we were on again and off again throughout my pregnancy and as you can imagine it was pretty stressful. Your book felt like an affirmation that we were doing the right thing in trying to make it work (and I still have no regrets for that!) but I feel almost as though we (you and I) have been living life in parallel. I my ex and I didnt get married but after signing up for your newsletter, around the same time I was questioning the validity of the relationship, your newsletter had a lot of pertinent and profound details of your marriage that were similar and kept me reading.

    We have ultimately decided not to be together as it was comming a less and less viable situation for both of us in that it did get to a point where the fights had gotten physical (while i was pregnant as well) I thought for the longest that we should make it work considering all of the horrible arguments we had made it through, and there were some happy moments but in hindsight I know it wasnt true love and I really stayed as long as I did to prove all of the nay-sayers wrong, including myself. I believe he did the same as well, especially considering he was mostly kind to me in front of my family but when we were alone together, things would suddenly change. I really just wanted a happy ‘normal’ relationship for myself and my children and refused to believe that we just werent meant to be together.

    Now I am happy that I have two beautiful healthy boys and that things didnt get to the point where he put me into any serious danger. It does get lonely sometimes and I will say that I still sometime feel like a failure for not being able to make it work but ultimately I am a better person now and feel like I have my life back. I mean I put so much energy into trying to make it work that I lost so much of myself.
    Thank you Kimberly for inspiring me to stand behind my decision and helping me be strong in it. You blogs have been extremely helpful in this difficult time. After reading this, feel confident in myself and my life. My apologies for going on and on but this truly does mean a lot and makes me feel a lot less lonely in my circumstance.
    We are beautiful, educated women and will get what we truly deserve. Thank you for helping me to keep that in perspective!



  2. tanyetta says:

    Thank you for sharing your amazing journey.

  3. Kimberly, you are brave, and I need your kind of courage. I, too, have posts written a long time ago that remain as drafts to this day.

    My husband are high school sweethearts, and we got married a few months before we turned 21 while we were still in college. Still kids in my eyes, I wasn’t pregnant or anything like that. We just thought we were grown and knew everything. We also sort of had this bohemian type of look on life and that “jump in” mentality. We’re still together today, but its been turbulent over the years because we didn’t know as much as we thought. We learned everything the hard way, and we just didn’t have all the smarts you’re supposed to have coming into a marriage. When you’re raised by a father who you thought could hold up the world with one hand, and made everything better, and who has been your hero your entire life made it really hard to be in a marriage with someone who was still learning how to be a man, wasn’t quite sure which degree to get, now he had to learn how to be the man of the house. I had my flaws (still have my flaws) too. I had to learn that marriage is work, and that there wasn’t going to be a whole lot of running in fields of flowers like before. I was hard to understand that the princess is now a grown woman, and queen of her own household. I had to learn that my husband was not my daddy.

    Anyway, thank you for your post.

  4. Theresa says:

    I am new to your website and have only begun to read.

    Thanks for sharing from your heart. I am sorry your marriage didn’t work out.

    Enjoyed your CNN interview and hope to read your book soon. As an entrepreneur mom, it sounds like it will have some great info in it.

    Have a wonderful holiday season and Merry Christmas!

  5. Petrona says:

    My story is somewhat like yours, only i was the one who never loved my man (husband now ) the way it appeared he loved me.

    He left for college after 18 mths of dating (i was 18, he was 27) and while away i got with lots of other persons, i broke off with them when he returned but never told him, too much shame and too much to tell.

    But our relationship continued under the pretense after admitting about one person he was suspicious of, i got pregnant shortly before admitting to him and 2 1/2 years after telling him he was still not over it, the questions and name calling and out right disrespect continued until one day he just said he had enough and wanted to move into another phase – marriage. How shock i was but a kinda happy to think that he would still make me his wife, i questioned it for a while and made attempts to call off the wedding after it seemed he did not want to get into helping me, wasn’t interested in pre-marital counselling and still reminded me of what i had done to him. I pushed ahead after he made attempts to explain his actions and in a way i wanted to believe it becasue I too wanted a happy home for my child, i believe i was more greatful that he stayed with me and made me his wife. In the end i realize that i was more in love with the idea of getting married than i was with him.

    The relationship needed time to heal and for us to get to a place of acceptance and forgiveness but it never did, as soon as we were in the matrimonial home, we were arguing about the other person who i was with. No bliss, no passion nothing jsut continuous arguments and i would say things that hurt, like i don’t want to be in this and i don’t have to stay marry etc. It seems i was now acting out what i felt before marrying to him, the more arguments we have the more insults he hurled at me and the more i hurled at him, resenments build and then i just shut down. i did not want to talk to him anymore, did not wan tto get intimate with him etc.
    I did him and myself a big disservice, i never had th big O with him or anyone else but they could not know this because i would act as if i was, i was just so insecure in myself i thought i needed to pretend about something so special.

    Now lots of years after i have found mysefl dealing with infidelity, it seems i got tired of seeking his aproval and love that i gravitated to others, exs and someone new and got too close to them. I had to admit it to him and in the end all the others from before we got married, the truth about not experiencing Orgasm and how i was not in love with him before we got married.

    With kids in the picture now i do not know where we go from here, i don’t want to continue in a relationship where i will hear everyday how sluttish i was and i do not think i have it in me to love him the way he should be loved.

    I need to stop now, i need a marriage counsellor

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