9 Women Share Why They Divorced & Are Better Because of It

Don't know if this is too personal, but I'm working on a crowdsource piece today for lifestyle about reasons women decided to pull the trigger and get a divorce. Would you mind giving a quote? (No biggie if you don't want to.)

Divorce. It's a seven-letter word that can stir up a ton of emotions. Anger. Rage. Guilt. Fear. Sadness. Sometimes, your happily ever after isn't with the person you walked down the aisle with -- and that's okay.


As much as no one likes to talk about divorce, it happens. And with an estimated 40 to 50 percent of marriages ending in divorce, please know you aren't alone. These women are sharing their stories about why they decided to end their marriages, what led up to it, and why fighting for love was no longer the best option.

1. I decided NOT to be unhappy. "It took me a while to finally decide I was done with my marriage. I've been around so much family who either never married or divorced that I wanted to show my kid something different. But, in doing so, I made myself extremely unhappy. I had to come to grips with the fact that staying in a loveless marriage wouldn't empower me or my child to be the best version of ourselves, so I ended it." -- Carly T.

More from The Stir: 36 Things I Wish Someone Told Me About Divorce

2. I wanted to evolve and grow. "I was married for 10 years. My husband and kids were my entire life. Somehow, I lost myself in that decade. One thing about marriage no one tells you is how much you and your spouse evolve. What worked eight or nine years ago might not be relevant today, and if you refuse to adapt and adjust, it's hard to move forward. I'm still learning to deal with my new normal, but my children say I'm more pleasant to be around." -- Kristina Y.

3. I realized I couldn't change him. "It took about six months of intensive therapy for me to call it quits on my marriage. I had to learn that not all abuse shows itself in the form of bruises, and that no one deserves to be talked down to, insulted, controlled, or manipulated. After multiple attempts at establishing boundaries and trying to communicate my needs to him, it was clear he was never going to change -- so I walked out. Three years later, he still treats me with disdain and contempt, but at least now my daughters know that they deserve to be treated with respect by their future spouses." -- Jenny E.

4. What I wanted from love and marriage wasn't my reality. "I was so in love with the idea of being in love that I failed to guard my heart -- and before I realized I was with someone who wasn't my 'Mr. Right,' I was already married. Don't rush into a marriage because you're head over heels for someone right now. Give your future together some serious thought, and use your engagement time wisely. Otherwise, you might end up getting a costly divorce like I did." -- Danika M.

More from The Stir: 17 Surprising Things You Learn After Divorce

5. We outgrew each other. "My divorce was less about how much I 'hated' my spouse and more about how we were no longer good for each other. We were high school sweethearts, who dated in college and thought getting married was the right thing to do. We ultimately grew up, and became different people who wanted different things. We both loved each other enough to let each other go and be happy." -- Samantha B.

6. I wanted to stop lying and start living. "I knew for years that I would wind up divorced from my husband, and for a long time, I figured I'd just wait until my son graduated high school to pull the plug. But then one day I woke up and thought, What the hell am I doing? What if my life suddenly ended tomorrow -- and I've wasted all these years living a lie? I was tired of living anything less than authentically and knew the only way I'd ever be happy again was to get out of my marriage and start over. It's the best decision I ever made, hands down." -- Mary H.

7. He cheated and I had to find my independence. "Infidelity led to the demise of my marriage, but not immediately. I was your classic stay-at-home mother who devoted everything and anything I had to my family. I cooked. I cleaned. I took care of our three children. I did my best to maintain my looks while battling moments of exhaustion, just so my ex wouldn't have an excuse to look elsewhere. Last year, I found out he was not only cheating on me, but had a mistress for many years, who he kept in an apartment downtown. I wanted to go but felt completely crippled. I wasn't working and had kids. It took some soul-searching, but I finally decided that my well-being was worth more and left. And now, I'm happy, working, and providing for my children." -- Shana P.

More from The Stir: 'Good' Divorces Do Exist -- I'm Living Proof

8. I stopped believing I had to prove something. "All of my friends and family kept telling me 'Don't marry that guy' while we were dating. I guess I wanted to prove them wrong by taking the chance and saying 'I do.' Yeah, I probably should've listened to them. It was an expensive learning lesson -- including the $45,000 we spent on our wedding, the $10,000 honeymoon, and this now pricey divorce. (I'm still going through the process.) Please don't tell me, 'Told ya so.'" -- Jamela S.

9. I decided not to stay for all the wrong reasons. "For many years, my marriage validated me. It made me feel like I had a purpose and wouldn't end up in some nursing hospital alone. As much as I loved my husband, I started to realize how much I wasn't in love with him -- and no one deserves that. After sleepless nights and many tears, we made it through. We both remarried and do pretty well with co-parenting our 11-year-old daughter." -- Vivian W.



Image via Bacho/Shutterstock

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