Divorce triggers a lot of different emotions, everything from sadness to regret. In some cases, a split is precipitated by a factor outside the marriage. In other cases, though, couples ask themselves whether there was something they could have done differently to save the relationship.
With that in mind, we asked divorced Huff/Post50 readers about the biggest mistakes they made in their marriages. Some responses were succinct. "Getting married when my instincts kept screaming 'NO!'" said Nancy Jurney. But others were more complex. "Not really knowing who he was. I should have done a better job on his background. Got married in June of 1986 and divorce was final in December 1986," said Jessie Williams. Take a look at the other responses below and let us know what you think in comments.
1. "We stopped putting the other first; stopped nurturing the relationship, dating. Simple everyday things like kissing, holding hands, hugging in public or private waned; growing in separate directions and/or not growing at all."
2. "Not giving him the respect and admiration he was looking for. He left me for a woman who needed rescuing and treated him like he was her knight in shining armor."
3. "Getting married to a person who did not share my religion, lifestyle, diet -- especially diet. If you can't eat the same things it is a sign you two do not have enough in common. I know diet sounds trivial, but when you think about it, trying to cook food for someone that you yourself just could not eat gets tiring. So you stop. Men have a thing about women cooking for them. I hear a lot of complaints that wives don't cook any more. With me, I just got tired of cooking food that I would never eat. So I stopped. He took it personally. Just too many differences."
4. "Thinking he was going to change. Trying to change them to be something they were never going to be."
5. "In my first marriage it was believing I could help him and the expectation we would live happy ever after. Nope. In the second, I'm learning it's not 50/50. If you both don't give your all it will never work."
6. "Taking childhood baggage into marriage! It takes work on both sides to make a great marriage! I wish parents knew how their abuse and neglect are setting the stage for future relationships so negatively."
7. "I married someone for stability, promises, dreams, comfort, consistency and protection. Reality was not a concern. It should have been. I depended on and expected too much from him and that was my mistake. Now that I have raised children, I know what unconditional love is and discovered that it was what I was missing in the marriage."
8. "Poor communication. Making assumptions. Not being clear and direct."
9. "Biggest mistake was turning a blind eye to all his affairs and getting married so young!!"
10. "Taking on the 'relationship responsibility' myself as if I could resolve the issues with love and communication. I didn't stand a chance. And so ... 29 years married to my high school sweetheart went up in a funeral pile."
11. "My issue was the fact that I stopped expressing myself in a way that was true to me when the relationship took off ... I would walk around on eggshells in front of my partner, for fear of being displeasing, and I gave up my hobbies and interests, too."
12. "My biggest mistake was letting myself be treated like a non-person ... no opinions, no choices, no voice. Pornography didn't help my self-esteem either."
13. "I think little things add up over the years and if you don't deal with issues when they come up, lots of people gradually grow apart over time and both parties often take each other for granted."
14. "Biggest mistake: I took her for granted."
15. "Going into marriage based on shared interests and other 'surface' types of similarities/likes and not considering deeper connections, like faith, morals, values, communication styles, and shared goals."