These are not your mama's love stories!
YOU'RE MARRIED FOR THE SECOND TIME IS THAT RIGHT?
"That is correct.
AND HOW LONG WERE YOU MARRIED THE FIRST TIME?
"Almost 12 years. We were together 17."
HOW DID YOU GUYS MEET?
"We met through a mutual friend. It was a bowling fundraiser for his soccer team."
DO YOU HAVE CHILDREN TOGETHER?
"Yeah, we have 2 children."
WHEN DID YOU TWO DIVORCE?
"Back in 2011."
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN MARRIED TO YOUR CURRENT (SECOND) HUSBAND?
"Since March of 2012."
DO YOU HAVE CHILDREN TOGETHER AS WELL?
YOU KNEW YOUR CURRENT HUSBAND WHEN YOU WERE MARRIED TO YOUR PREVIOUS HUSBAND IS THAT CORRECT?
"I've known him since I was about 11 years old."
WERE YOU TWO EVER ROMANTICALLY INVOLVED BEFORE GETTING TOGETHER AND MARRYING IN 2012?
"When we were younger we dated for a short period of time."
SO HOW DID YOU WIND UP COMING BACK INTO EACH OTHERS LIVES ALL THESE YEARS LATER?
"We actually stayed friends, mostly through letters, all these years. My ex knew all about it. We were pen-pals. We'd get together, as friends, once in a while. Before I left my husband, I had been unhappy for a long time. One day, the last time we got together, I opened up to him about it, and it just exploded from there."
DO YOU THINK YOU HAD FEELINGS FOR HIM THAT YOU WERE REPRESSING WHILE YOU WERE MARRIED TO YOUR FIRST HUSBAND?
"Yes, I think I always had feelings for him but I don't think I realized it. I knew he always had feelings for me, but he didn't tell me, I just knew it. I had feelings for him but I don't think they were always as strong as they became in 2011."
WHAT DO YOU THINK CHANGED?
"I think being so extremely unhappy in my first marriage for so many years and not admitting it to anyone, not even wanting to admit it to myself. I finally couldn't deal with the lie I was living inside my own head anymore. I wasn't in love and I couldn't make myself be in love. I was being unfair to not just myself but to my ex husband. I felt like I was cheating him.
HOW WERE YOU ABLE TO TELL YOUR EX HUSBAND THAT YOU WERE NO LONGER HAPPY?
"It was the hardest, scariest thing I ever had to do. I think I actually got the strength and courage from my husband now. I got the courage to tell him; to sit down and just tell him that I am so sorry but I am not in love with you anymore. It was eating me up so bad, it had gotten so stressful that I was getting sick from it, like physically and mentally sick from it. And I just finally built up the strength to talk to him."
WHAT DID YOU INITIALLY SAY TO HIM?
"It was late at night and I had just come home. He was playing video games. I told him that I had to talk to him, and I just told him something to the effect that I was not happy in the marriage and that I didn't think it was working and that we needed to separate. It's kind of all a fog."
WAS HE SURPRISED?
"I was actually surprised at his reaction. I guess I thought he'd fight me on it more. He was a little surprised but not like I thought he'd be. After we talked, I thought it was gong to be hours and hours and it actually wound up being only like an hour, and after we talked, he went back to playing his video game. So, I was a little surprised!"
"It was, I think, what most women consider a fairytale, what every girl dreams of. That's what made it so hard for me to admit that I was not in love. It was such a happy relationship. We rarely fought. We had a nice home, 2 beautiful children, took vacations together, always had nice holidays together, always had fun with friends together... It was a very trusting relationship. I never questioned my trust for him. It was just very happy.
YOUR CURRENT HUSBAND, WHAT S YOUR RELATIONSHIP LIKE?
"It's a very troubled marriage. It's very unstable. We fight about money all the time, we fight about the kids, we fight about trust issues, but, we are completely head over heels in love if that makes any sense."
WHEN YOU ENDED YOUR FIRST MARRIAGE, AND ENTERED INTO THE RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR CURENT HUSBAND, DID YOU HAVE A SENSE OF WHAT YOU WERE GIVING UP VS. WHAT YOU WERE MOVING TOWARDS? DID YOU SEE THE DIFFERENCES IN THE TWO RELATIONSHIPS?
"Yes, I did know what I was giving up. I totally knew what I was giving up and what I was getting myself into. My now husband has had a very troubled life. I thought that that life was over. I truly truly thought that that was over, or else I wouldn't have gotten into the relationship. But, I couldn't help my feelings. I thought that that part of his life was over, but I was wrong. I thought that he could change.
YOU CAME FROM A SEEMINGLY IDEAL LIVING SITUATION, WHAT IS YOUR CURRENT LIVING SITUATION?
"I live in an apartment with my 3 children. My older 2 I have every other week. My husband is in and out of our lives."
YOU STILL SAY THAT YOU ARE HEAD OVER HEELS IN LOVE WITH HIM THOUGH?
"Crazy right?! I know that he's an awesome person and he has good intentions and a good heart when he is in the right place. I always hope that things will change and he will be able to stay in the right place. I mean yeah, I am head over heels in love with him. We have a lot in common. When things are good, we click extremely well together. So yes, I am still head over heels in love with him."
HOW DID YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY REACT WHEN YOU TOLD THEM YOU WERE GIVIG UP BASICALLY EVERYTHING, A SEEMINGLY PERFECT LIFE, FOR THIS TUMULTUOUS SITUATION YOU ARE IN NOW?
"Most of my friends and family were extremely surprised. Nobody knew my lack of love for my first husband. I hid it for so many years. Nobody knew because on the outside it appeared as though we were the perfect family. I really didn't confide in anyone- maybe two people, and I'd only confide little pieces. My family was angry. They loved my first husband. They thought we had the perfect life. They hated my current husband. My friends at first were supportive, but then our mutual friends, who at first gave me credit for letting him go, decided that I had moved on too quickly, and gotten married too quickly, and had another child too quickly. A lot of them couldn't be fiends with me anymore. The few that stayed are still supportive, but they do tell me how it is. They hope I'll wake up one day and realize I made a mistake and move on. They want me to be happy even if it's alone."
DO YOU FEEL LIKE YOU MADE A MISTAKE LEAVING?
"I don't feel like I made a mistake leaving my first husband because I was not in love with him. I couldn't make myself be in love with him. It was bad. It got to the point where after we had sexual relations I'd go in the bathroom and cry because I felt so bad for not wanting to be with my own husband. I would think of every excuse not to be affectionate. I wish I could have made myself be in love with him. I wish there was a magic pill I could've taken to make myself feel it, because it was a great marriage, he was, is, a great guy. So, no I don't think I made a mistake leaving, but I do feel like I moved on too quickly. I think everyone was right that I let everything happen too fast."
YOU SAID THAT YOU CAN'T HELP WHO YOU ARE IN LOVE WITH. WOULD YOU IF YOU COULD?
"Absolutely. I think anybody would want to be in love with the person who is going to treat you the way you deserve to be treated. Yeah. I mean, if there was that magic pill out there to make you love the "right" person, I would take it, yeah I would."
DO YOU BELIEVE IT'S OKAY TO JUST SAY, OKAY I AM IN LOVE WITH THIS PERSON, BUT WE'RE JUST NOT THE RIGHT FIT FOR ONE ANOTHER. IS IT ALRIGHT TO TURN YOUR BACK ON THAT LOVE AND JUST LET IT GO?
"It's okay. I mean I know that it's okay, but it's hard, really hard to change your heart. Its hard to make yourself think with your brain and not your heart. I mean your brain knows the "right" answer, but your heart can't let it go. With the heart, the pain is just too severe, too much pain to let go. You just want to try and try and not give up when you feel like you're with your soulmate, even if your brain says it's not right for you. But I do think everyone comes to a breaking point and can only take so much. With my current husband I am hoping that one day, if things don't change, I will reach that breaking point and be strong enough to say okay maybe love is not enough."
"I don't have an answer to that question. I don't know. I haven't gotten there yet."
SO DO YOU THINK THE FACT THAT YOU TWO ARE SO IN LOVE, AND THAT YOU DO BELIEVE YOU ARE SOULMATES, AND THAT YOU HAVE GIVEN UP SO MUCH, WILL ALLOW HIM TO GET TO A POINT WHERE HE SAYS "OK I NEED TO CHANGE FOR HER OR I AM GOING TO LOSE HER"?
"We do talk about that often. I mean, he promises all the time. He says he's going to get his shit together, that we are soulmates, that he doesn't want to have a life without me, that he has no life without me, so his intentions are there. But again, his life, the damage he has had in his life, he needs help. You can't force someone with an addiction to get help. With him the addiction takes over. I know that it's not him when he's in that place. It makes me so angry when he chooses that addiction over me, but I know it's not him. I know it is a sickness. It's like me having depression. It's a sickness.
PEOPLE DO CRAZY THINGS FOR LOVE. SOME MIGHT SAY YOU GAVE UP A PERFECT SITUATION TO GET NOTHING IN RETURN. BUT SOME MIGHT SAY YOU JUST DID WHAT YOU HAD TO DO FOR LOVE. THAT YOU CAN'T FIGHT FATE, YOU CANT FIGHT SOUL MATES. DO YOU BELIEVE THAT? DO YOU BELIEVE THAT NO MATTER WHAT THE SITUATION MIGHT HAVE BEEN, THAT SOMEHOW, SOMEWAY, YOU WOULD WIND UP TOGETHER? DOES LOVE CONQUER ALL?
"I used to believe that love conquered all. And now I don't know. I don't have that faith in love, I don't have that faith in a lot of things. I know that money (contentment, security) doesn't buy happiness, because I had that. But then, I don't know if love buys happiness either. So, I don't know if I think love can conquer all.
DO YOU TALK TO YOUR FIRST HUSBAND AT ALL?
"Only about the kids."
WHAT KIND OF TERMS ARE YOU ON?
"Well, we're not friends. I wish we were but he doesn't want to be. I'd say we're civil. We do it for the children."
IS HE WITH SOMEONE ELSE?
DOES HE SEEM HAPPY?
"Yes. he is extremely happy and I am very happy for him. He deserves it."
IF YOU HAD TO DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN, WOULD YOU DO IT THE SAME WAY?
"No! (no hesitation)"
WHAT WOULD YOU DO DIFFERENTLY?
"I think I would try counseling again, even though it didn't work at first. I would have tried longer. I would have talked to him sooner. I would have tried harder. Again you can't make the heart love someone it doesn't, but I would not have made a decision so quickly. I mean even though it was years building up, it all happened so fast once it was in motion. Even if I were still going to leave, I would just get my life on track first- my life and my kids lives."
IF YOU HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO GO BACK WOULD YOU- CLEAN SLATE, FRESH START, ALL IS FORGIVEN, WOULD YOU GO BACK?
No. I mean, I have thought about that. But you can't force yourself to love somebody, even though you know you would have all of the happiness, all of the security, money, whatever in the world, you can't make yourself love someone. It wouldn't be fair to him. He's more like a friend or a brother, thats how I felt about the relationship. It would just be too unfair to let him be unhappy, and I would be unhappy."
SO IF YOU HAD TO CHOOSE AGAIN , YOU'D CHOOSE LOVE EVEN IF IT MEANT UNCERTAINTY AND BEING LESS COMFORTABLE, THEN CHOOSING THE LIFE OF PEACE AND CONTENTMENT AND SECURITY IN A LOVELESS RELATIONSHIP?
"I would choose being alone. I'd rather be alone than have anyone else be unhappy because of me."
IS HE THERE NOW, YOUR HUSBAND?
DO YOU TALK?
"Yeah. Every day. We still have a child together."
SO YOU'RE STAYING TOGETHER?
"It's harder to leave when you have a child together. I mean not that I want to leave. I mean, sometimes I do, sometimes I don't. It just makes it ten times harder when you have a child together. It's hard no matter what, but children make it that much harder. I just can't bear the thought of breaking up another family, even if it is already broken on some level."
I GUESS SOMETIMES LOVE REALLY ISN'T ENOUGH.