I am the only woman in the history of divorce who didn't keep the house. Instead, I took my equity and hired a therapist. She bought a house.
My first marriage, "The Episode," was a typical starter marriage -- like in the 60's when my parents bought a "starter" home. They fell in love with a sweet little house, but in five years outgrew it and moved on to bigger and better things. My first marriage started off sweet, but in five years my husband outgrew it and moved on to younger and blonder things. They now live in our starter home.
About three years into this glorious union I was thinking it was time to start a family. That was until a nagging cramp in my uterus warned me that my now "Huz Was" was mating elsewhere. Turned out, he was -- with two of my best friends who just happen to be sisters. (Feel free to wash your hands, shower, or get a breath mint. I'll wait.) To say that I dodged a sperm bullet is an understatement.
So at 34, I was divorced and despondent. But, as my doting father advised me, "Give it time, sweetie. You'll see. That asshole did you a favor."
Which brings up a point -- Why do your family and friends wait till after your divorce to tell you they thought you were marrying a complete jerk--when that fact was apparent the minute they met him?
My Maid of Honor had no problem telling me she hated the dresses, so why not tell me she hated the groom? I asked who else felt this way and she rattled off most of the bridal party, the priest and my former Mother-In-Law. Apparently "Mom" didn't say anything because having me around made him "tolerable." And, when I asked her why she never told me this before I strolled down the Aisle of Doom, she said, "Because you were so in love."
Yes. I was in love -- with an asshole. Thanks for the heads up.
As my Dad so sagely advised, I gave it time and eventually moved on...ready to try marriage again. I wanted an "I Do Over."
Most of the men I dated were commitment phobic. They were like POW's, limping and battered, who felt one tour of spousal duty was plenty, thank you. (Ironically my first husband was the only man I knew who wanted commitment. He wanted to get married. He wanted to wear the pants in the family. Too bad he couldn't commit to keeping them on.)
My next serious relationship was with a man whose second wife took the house, all his money and most of their personal belongings. So the few things he had left he got monogrammed...the sheets, the towels, his balls. Needless to say he didn't want to get married again.
I now have a new love in my life who was adamant he would never remarry. And who could blame him? His first wife, "The Incident," made Glenn Close in "Fatal Attraction" look like Taylor Swift in a Disney flick. To quote a line from the horror film, "The Village," "She is the thing of which we do not speak."
Bob and I have been together for over ten years. We are occasionally shaken -- but somehow not stirred -- from our commitment to this thing called love. And, in our case that includes marriage. It's not everyone's choice, but it's ours -- our "I Do Over."