The Mid-30s Divorcee Club
By Steven Johns
Divorce is never pretty. Even the most amicable splits hurt and have moments of ugliness. There is usually one who wants it more than the other, and throw money and kids into the mix and all hell breaks loose. However, most divorces are usually between older people who have been married for years.
This article is about young people involved in divorces; people who are victims of what seems like an epidemic, by the time they are in their mid 30s. I have a few friends whose first marriage didn’t make it past their 30th birthday. I made it slightly past that and while it was amicable and I will always care about my ex, it was still hard. It’s not something we could have predicted. Culture and life in general got in the way. We were lucky we didn’t have kids yet but others we know weren’t so lucky.
Divorce is becoming more and more normal in our society but surprisingly young divorce is on the rise. People in generations past ‘stuck it out’ through good and bad, whereas younger people seem to realize they don’t have to settle for something less than true happiness. Have we made it too easy to get married and divorced? Do people rush into young love nuptials? Are people just not ready for all the crap life will throw at them? Is love just not enough sometimes? I think all these things play into it.
I also think marriage is not the institution it used to be. Look at Hollywood; 52 hour marriages, and two years is a long time recently. People seem to take the whole idea less seriously. A friend of mine was divorced twice and married to a Vietnamese call girl he met on business while in Vietnam, all by the time he was 35. He didn’t seem to think it was that strange!
What happiness can you experience after young divorce? I can say from experience it’s hard to move on after getting divorced at a young age. You’re in your early 30s and a divorcee, and you have to start over after thinking your life was all set. Starting over from the beginning can be very scary experience. Try explaining that on a first date; “Yeah I like walks on the beach, sugar in my latte and I am divorced.” One thing I have learned is that once you have been separated for a year or so, file for divorce. There is no chance of moving on until it’s all legally finalized. It makes life afterward much simpler.
All your friends seem to be getting married for the first time and you’re supposed to be happy and excited for them. You do your best to skip these events but that just makes you seem bitter which is the very thing you don’t want to seem, so you grin and bear it. You sit through other people’s weddings, trying hard not to think…”good luck”.
Everybody looks at you a little differently. You start dating again when you think you’re ready and your friends automatically question whether it’s too soon and if you really are ready. And don’t even think about getting serious with someone; once failed and you obviously don’t now what your doing in the eyes of others. I believe differently. I think you know when you’re ready to move onward and upward from the life changing experience. No matter what age you are when you divorce, it will be hard but there is always light at the end of the tunnel.
I can say from experience that you do eventually move on. The stigma fades and you meet someone who is perfect for you and the young divorce becomes a memory and not a burden as it was when it was happening. Don’t be afraid to fall in love again and maybe even walk back down the aisle.