Tuesday, December 12, 2006

divorce

For those of you still unaware, the new boy I've been dating is recently divorced. How recently, you ask? As in it was officially final today (Monday). The only real experience I've had with divorce is when my parents divorced (10 years ago) and when friends of mine have gone through it. I guess it is to be expected that he is having a terribly hard time with it. He keeps talking about how he's a failure at love and marraige. This isn't constant, mind you. His emotions have been a veritable roller coaster of late. I repeat, I guess it's to be expected. Unfortunately, I'm at a complete loss as to how to act. No matter what I do or say, it seems to be the wrong thing. If I give him space, he gets needy. If I try to comfort him, he gets distant. How can I do the right thing? Given time, I'm sure it will all work out, but it is really hard to be patient. I've never been one to sit around and watch people I care about suffer--I want to help in any way possible. It's when I can't help that I feel like a failure. Was this relationship doomed from the start with its proximity to the separation/divorce? He said that I wasn't the "rebound girl," that in fact there had been a few of those. Nevertheless, I am the first person with whom he chose to enter into a relationship. Too make matters worse, it is easy to see myself growing old with this guy. How do we get past the tough times together...?

Any advice or words of wisdom? Keep in mind, I can't always be strong enough for the both of us. In fact, sometimes it's hard to be strong enough for just myself.

2 comments:

Heather said...

Sheesh...that's quite a rock and a hard place situation you are going through. The best advice I can give is to know that you can't fix everyone right away. Try and gage what he needs...you two still are going through that whole getting to know each other and read each other period. Stay calm and call your friends frequently to vent or obtain advice. when all else fails, GIRLS NIGHT complete with alcohol and chocolate.

Andrew said...

hmm. can i get in on some of that girls night/alcohol/chocolate action? I would say the main thing is that relationships after a divorce have to recognize that the divorcee has (at least) part of their life which was given to someone else. That part can never really belong to a current significant other or relationship. I would say that the issues that go along with divorce belong to the past relationship and to involve them in any way in a current relationship is to make the current relationship subservient to the past one. I would avoid engaging emotionally with divorcee's relationship issues about divorce... I know that's kind of harsh, but I know that for me, sharing issues about my divorce with another woman would feel like a threesome somehow.