Can Divorce be considered worse than Death?

In my case, I think it can.  However, I would like to preface this blog by saying I intend no disrespect to anyone who has lost a spouse to death.  That is truly a tragic and heartbreaking event that is so….final.  There is no chance you might someday accidentally run into your spouse, for one last glimpse of what might have been.  The spouse is gone, for good. 

So, why do I feel this way?  I have had such trouble in my mind and my heart about this whole subject.  As a Christian I don’t feel I should wish death on anyone.  And I don’t.  But when a spouse leaves you out of the blue and cuts off all communication like a coward, with no further interaction whatsoever, it can be as much of a shock to the system as a death.  More in fact.  Because this person CHOSE to leave you and never see you again.  This person basically rips your heart out of your body, stomps on it, and throws it in the trash.  And you are left to SURVIVE anyway you can.  But there is no wake.  There is no funeral.  There are no people holding your hand, letting you cry on their shoulder.  There is no joyous rememberance of past good times.  There is just….nothing.  Life as you knew it is gone forever and there is nothing you can say or do or beg or grovel for to get it back.  People have no sympathy for you.  Divorcee does not get treated the same as a widow.  Not even close.  And with the divorce rate so high, people treat it more and more casually.  No big deal.

Granted, the stigma of being divorced is not as bad as in the past, when people would whisper behind your back and think you were out to steal THEIR husbands (instead of the other way around!)  I really do think it is a sad commentary on our culture, that most marriages are so disposable nowadays.  Have a fight?  Get divorced.  Have an affair?  Get divorced.  Want a younger model?  Get divorced.  It’s too much trouble and hard work to keep a marriage going for decades.  Why bother, when divorce is so easy? 

I was not blameless in my divorce.  There were many underlying factors at work.  I should have listened to my brain initially and realized this marriage was doomed from the start.  There were so many things about my ex that shocked and appalled me, and I’m sure I was judgemental.  But I never thought it would end so calculated and so cruelly. 

I went through all the phases of grief with my divorce.  Denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance and relocation.  It took me a long, long time to even find the will to want to live again.  But, I made it through, and I even FORGAVE my ex-spouse.  I will never FORGET the pain and suffering he caused me, but it takes too much time and energy to continue to hate someone.  I actually feel sorry for someone like him, so cold, so cruel, so heartless.  He no longer has to answer to me.  He has to answer to God now.  I sure wouldn’t want to be in his shoes standing in front of the pearly gates.

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