Guest Author - Caroline Henrich
There has been an ongoing battle into whether men's thoughts and emotions are different than those of women. Regardless of the science, which is best left to the scientists, here is one man's view.
There is an acquitance of mine who agreed to be interviewed for this article. This man is divorced and the divorce was very challenging to say the least. When asked why this man married his wife, his response was that he felt societal and familial expectations to remarry after an earlier divorce. He felt that he could not call off the wedding because of the plans made by family and friends. Therefore, he followed through and hoped for the best.
During the years that followed, he reports that he tried to make the marriage work, but always felt there was something missing. As each had children from a previous marriage, neither wanted additional children. He advised that this was a blessing, because additional children would have complicated a difficult situation.
He reported that he did not communicate his feelings of unhappiness during the marriage to his wife, preferring to suffer in silence. When asked if he thought talking would have helped, he responded they were too different and he did not want the fights and emotional outbursts he believed were inevitable. Finally after years of trying to find solitary activities he could enjoy alone, the differences became too much to bear and divorce proceedings began.
The divorce was challenging because the ex-wife believed she had tried to make the marriage work, but never felt special to her husband. This made the moving on process more difficult.
When asked what he believed were the mistakes regarding this marriage and subsequent divorce, he explained that he should have never married this women. He said it was unfair to both of them and he should have explained to her that while he certainly cared about her, he did not have the depth of feelings to sustain a marriage. He also advised that when he honestly looked in the mirror, he realized that he did not believe in marriage after his first divorce and would have preferred to remain single.
He admitted that he should have communicated with his wife and owed her that, but he could not. I found the word "owe" to be interesting and when asked, he said he felt that remaining in the marriage was a debt because he said "I do".
This sad story should not be the basis to judge either person in this marriage and divorce. It is an opportunity for both men and women to come to terms with their true feelings. If a person does not want to get married, then don't. If however you do go through with the marriage, it is important to put your best effort into making the marriage work and this starts with honest and open communication. If the marriage cannot work, communication remains vital to ensuring that two people can move on with their lives. Dealing with divorce with respect and honesty can make the process easier to bear for all involved.