Divorces after Decades? Opinions?

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Registered: 01-07-2008
Divorces after Decades? Opinions?
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Mon, 07-26-2010 - 2:23pm

You know, first off, I have to say, I hope I didn't already post this, because I've had this on my mind for awhile. I'm sorry if this is a repeat. Let me know if it is Anyway....

Example, Al, and Tipper Gore. 40 years I think they've been married. Now, divorce. I can't believe it. I just wonder, after so many years of marriage, what causes a divorce? It boggles my mind. I know sometimes there is cheating involved, although, let's take that out of the equation. I've heard of couples getting divorced after so many years, but I am curious how? I know I am a newlywed. I just cannot imagine what you can't work out after 20 plus years.

I feel like marriages were different when our parent's got married. I feel like a lot of couples get married, and don't work out things as much. They rush for divorce. I know a couple right now, who probably shouldn't have gotten married in the first place. BUT, they are married. They are having a hard time right now and basically she is just throwing in the towel. She refuses to go to counseling. They have two kids, and he adopted her child. He want's to work things out, he's so upset, she doesn't want anything to do anything. I think that they could work things out with effort. Although, I think that divorce is just so accepted now.

I want to say, that I am in NO WAY, judging the wonderful people on this board who are on their second marriage. I want to stress that. I know there are reasons for divorce.

I am a more spiritual person, than religious, but to me, marriage is making a promise to each other, and a promise to God. My Husband feel very strongly about that. Now, I got married last September, at 28. My Birthday is in November. I'll be 30 this year, and my Husband will be 33. I feel like we got married a bit older, but, I also believe that was a good choice. I'm glad I was a bit older. I think you know yourself better. I got a wedding invite for a 22 year old. I think that is young. I think that could contribute to divorces, although, my main thing is after a 40 year marriage, what can't you work out?

I guess that is the purpose of this post, What do you guys think? Do you think after a long marriage you should be able to get through your problems? Do you think that times have changed, and people don't take marriage as seriously? Do you think that people who get married before 25, are too young to get married, and aren't mature enough to take marriage seriously? The reason I bring the age 25 up, is that the divorce rate is 80% higher if you get married before 25. I guess I was just wondering what some of your feelings were on this.

On another note, what are your deal breakers? You know, cheating, etc. that would force your hand at divorce. I was just thinking about some of this stuff, and I wondered what your opinions were on all of this.

I want to stress again that I am in no way judging, you wonderful ladies that are on second marriages.

I am a newlywed, or still feel like one, although, I just was thinking, that nothing, would lead my Husband and I to get divorced. I feel very strongly about our marriage, if he cheated, i would probably sleep in the extra bedroom and go to counseling. Although, until you've been through it, I suppose you can't answer, because ideally that's what i would want to do, and my Husband too, but I've not been through this, so I can't answer I guess.

So, what are your opinions on all of this? Thoughts? Just curious. Thought it was a good topic to bring up.
So, What Do You Think?
* Robyn *

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Avatar for mrosie
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Registered: 03-23-2000
Mon, 07-26-2010 - 6:50pm

I think a lot of cases of people who get married after a long marriage, like the Gores, is a case of them growing apart and not dealing with problems when they first arose. That's actually two separate reasons, I guess.


When a couple have children and focus their attentions on the kids and household needs, their relationship might suffer from lack of attention. Once the kids leave, the damage has already been done and they may have drifted too far apart to repair the relationship. Plus they no longer have the family unit as such a strong reason to stay married. Not that adult children of divorce don't suffer consequences but I think it's much different than when people divorce while their kids are young.


My parents have been married for 37 years. After raising 5 children together, I know they went through a period of adjustment when my youngest sister moved out. They had their first child less than a year after they married so they had never really had time to themselves for most of 30 years! Now their relationship has found a new balance and I think they are back to being mostly happy. And, of course, that's all just my observations; they might never have described their marriage as less-than-happy.


I also had an argument with some people at work. Three of my coworkers had been divorced after long marriages; one after 18 years, one after 17 years together (not sure how many married) and one after 15. Those aren't quite as long but it was still unnerving to someone in their 12th year of marriage to hear people say that there's simply nothing you can do when things go south. I strongly disagree. I believe that there are warning signs that one or both people are unhappy. Just because you don't talk about it (or *because* you don't talk about it) doesn't mean that things aren't changing and going down a negative path.


DH and I went to counseling in year #8. Things had deteriorated to the point that I had started daydreaming about divorce (I was going to move to the same city where my sister was going to college, etc) and I told DH that we had to do something because it wasn't getting better on its own. The counselor helped us so much, just by listening to how we talked to each other and pointing out things that we were totally missing in the other's communication. That's why I so strongly recommend counseling to anyone who is dealing with happiness in their marriage. Even if you can't put your finger on the problem, that's part of what a good counselor is trained to do.


As for deal breakers, I feel like

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Registered: 03-19-2003
Mon, 07-26-2010 - 7:01pm
Great topic Robyn,
I too see that some are now divorcing after
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Avatar for lucy4980
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Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 07-26-2010 - 9:06pm

I think a lot of times there were issues brewing for a long time and finally they come to a head for whatever reason.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-20-2007
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 12:20am
There are lots of reasons for people getting a divorce. I think that Rosie is right in this regard about the Gores. Once the kids were grown and out of house Al and Tipper realized that they had grown apart and were no longer compatible and realized that it was time to go their separate ways. In my own first marriage I realized that after the first three years that my husband and I were no longer a couple. But I held on for another six years, when I should've gotten out a lot earlier. The thing is, that no matter how well we might know another married couple, we can't know what truly goes on in their relationship, what keeps them together and what tears them apart.
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-14-2007
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 5:21pm

Hard to comment really


1stmarriage alchohol and hit once - instant div


2nd marriage almost 26 years - the deal breaker aside from the above for me would be cheating.

Denise

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-07-2008
Wed, 07-28-2010 - 12:58pm

I agree with all your responses!! As for the guest room, I made it my closet, slash girly room, so I'd be fine, LOL! Love the humor though!!

In all seriousness, I agree with RoseAnn, on counseling 100%. My Husband and I did gosh, almost a year at least 7 months, with premarital, and because we had some issues. We paid for it, because we didn't get married in a church, but I tell everyone that is thinking about marriage: don't do it without counseling! We found a place that didn't coast that much, and, we still use techniques we learned in counseling. It changed our relationship for the best.

I also agree that you never know what goes on behind closed doors. With the Gores too, the political thing being over, not having kids in the house. Good point.

RoseAnn, you hit the nail on the head with your coworkers. That's the kind of thing, I was talking about. Like you said, there are warning signs, and even if your beyond that, counseling should still be an option. Again, it's so surprising to me that after 12 years, there's nothing you can do, let's just trash it. I think a lot of the people that "trash" their marriages could have been saved, people just don't want to work on it.

I know that people get married, as an example, my bff Jen, and it is just not right. She knew she shouldn't have married him. Of course it ended in divorce, but she will openly say, she knew it wasn't right. She was younger, 22, but she had a child with him, and I think that's why she did it. Everyone knew that she shouldn't have married him, she even called off the wedding more than a few times. I know it happens. Not just when your young. I think sometimes people think it's the next step, and it seems logical. I also think, when your younger, sometimes, you don't really understand "forever". Like it doesn't really hit you. Because when your 22, 30, is old, you know? Just a theory. I know it's not true for everyone, although, there is a reason the divorce rate is so much higher before 25.

I agree that abuse is a deal breaker, I don't know if cheating is for me. I'd like to think we could get though that with counseling, who really knows though. My definite deal breaker though is abuse. That is something that is usually hard wired with the person's brain, and isn't just a one time thing, unless you leave after the one time, in my opinion.

I've shared my thoughts now, and I have really enjoyed reading all of your opinions on this too, I thought it was an all around interesting topic.

* Robyn *

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Registered: 05-18-2006
Thu, 08-05-2010 - 9:29am
I think it is downright sad. If cheating or abuse wasn't involved then they should stick to their vows. My ILs have been married over 50 years and my parents are still married. We are in our second decade of marriage, even though we both married at 20/21. I think the divorce rate has more to do with what is acceptable in one's family. It is unacceptable in ours. We were blessed with Godly parents who did not do everything perfect but they showed us God's love. Prior to our weddding it was agreed upon that if either of us cheat than the marriage is over.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-07-2008
Fri, 08-06-2010 - 2:49pm

I agree with you! Do people just not take vows seriously now?! I am more of a spiritual person, that does fall under Christian beliefs, and I do believe shared faith, or shared values do contribute to a good marriage. I also agree that our parents marriages are role models. My parents were married 37 years I think, in 2001, when my Father passed. I always have had memories of my parents being really happy. Beau's parents were divorced young, although he spent all of his youth, with his Grandparents, and as they have both recently passed, he sees them as a marriage role model. They were married over 50 years. They were happy until the day his Grandmother died. He told her she was beautiful all of the time, other stuff like that. They were also high school sweet hearts, like us, but we did have a break, of a few years. His Mother and Step Dad are the worst example of marriage, they got divorced, and are now living together. He has said from a young age that he wanted a marriage like his Grandparents. Funny story, one time I mentioned to his Mom, about having great role models, and she smiled, and looked to Beau's Step Dad! You just keep thinking that, LOL!

As you said, Divorce is inacceptable. That is exactly how we feel. Hey, if I have to sleep in my room/closet, (it's basically an extra bedroom) for awhile if we have a big fight, then Ok, but Divorce is just not an option. I feel like people today get married and in the back of their head think, Divorce IS an option. Like marriage isn't taken seriously anymore.

I'm glad your marriage has been successful, you got married young, a lot stacked against you. I'm 29, my Husband is 32, we got married last fall, I felt like waiting was smart for me, and there are so many statistics, about younger marriages. Your very fortunate. It sounds like you have a great marriage. I hope that our marriage will be as strong as yours is, in the years ahead!

* Robyn

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Registered: 01-04-2006
Tue, 08-10-2010 - 8:04am

"I think that is young. I think that could contribute to divorces, although, my main thing is after a 40 year marriage, what can't you work out?"


You'd be surprised how easy it is to grow apart.

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Registered: 03-19-2003
Tue, 08-10-2010 - 9:16am
Hi tryinghard,
Welcome to the board :)

Thanks for stopping by & sharing your thoughts.
Hope you'll visit us here again :)

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