The saying goes "til death do us part", unfortunately for these couples, their flame burnt out much earlier than expected.
When There’s No Middle Ground
“She seemed a bit reluctant to help with the wedding planning. Awkward, but not out of character.
A few months in, she came to me saying that she felt ‘trapped’ by monogamy and that she believed she was polyamorous.
Of course, she had someone in mind – her boss. There isn’t a middle ground between ‘I don’t want to open the relationship, especially for your boss’ and ‘I’m going to date him no matter what it costs you/our relationship.’
She was rather surprised when I filed for divorce.”
Sometimes It’s Best To Just Walk Away
“We were together for about six years when we got married in 2006 (I was 26 at the time). We had issues that I didn’t see/recognize at the time because I never had healthy relationships. So I just thought relationships were hard and fighting was normal. He was a narcissist with a drinking problem and ‘prince charming syndrome’ and I had serious self esteem issues, so I was happy somebody wanted me. I hoped marriage, babies, and all that grown-up stuff would somehow fix us. The day itself was lovely. I felt pretty and loved. But I spent our wedding night alone, crying, because he was making love to a bottle of Johny Walker on the couch and deep down inside I knew I made a mistake.
I did try to make the best of things but nothing changed between us, and the issues we had before getting married still existed and actually got worse. Going out for a drink always ended with him disappearing, gambling and losing lots of money in a cheap casino, me being upset about that, telling him I had enough and him gaslighting me into thinking it was all my fault. He then did the prince charming thing by being the big-hearted hero who forgave his silly, dumb wife and promised he would make things better. The week after was great, he was attentive and funny and things looked good until he had to go out for a drink again. This behavior repeated every two weeks or so.
Things changed when I told my colleagues during an office party that my marriage sucked and that I secretly went back on the pill while we were trying to make babies (because he made me believe a baby would make things better). I spilled all the ugly beans about his drinking, the lies, and the accusations and for the first time said out loud that I made a mistake by marrying him. There was one colleague who simply said that such behavior wasn’t normal in a healthy relationship and that I deserved better. And that was the trigger.
Those words hit home and I started to care less and less about what he did, and by me not reacting to his games anymore, he went completely off the rails. Like he needed the fights and the tricks to just… be. The final straw was him making a scene in a restaurant when we went out to dinner with friends. He insulted the owner and staff and made an absolute fool of himself. While walking home, I told him he needed help for his drinking because I couldn’t deal with it anymore. I gave him the option to go home together and getting him into a program of some sorts and deal with it or, he could turn around and go back to the bar and we were done. He just looked at me, gave me a smug, extremely punchable creep smile and went to the bar, totally thinking this would be another empty threat.
I walked back home, terrified and relieved at the same time. I cried, threw up, laughed hysterically, cried more and realized that everything changed because I never felt so sure about anything in my life. He came home early in the morning and as soon as he was asleep, I got up, drove down to the beach to clear my head and contacted an attorney later that morning. By the time he got up, I told him we had an appointment with the attorney a few days later and that he could sleep in the spare room from now on. He was in shock. He did not recognize the self-assured ice queen I became overnight. He made some pathetic attempt to change my mind but just shut up when I glared at him and that power shift just freed me from any doubt or fear about the future.
We were divorced within two months and the year after was hard – emotionally and financially – but I was happier than ever before. I went to therapy to deal with my demons, got a better job, made a career and discovered the person I really was. In hindsight, I never should have gotten married but it also was the best lesson in life. We are not in touch anymore. He got remarried within a year or so to another ugly duckling he could ‘fix’ so he doesn’t have to fix himself. It’s not my concern and I don’t care. It’s been over ten years and I’m in a good place right now.”
Well, That Will Certainly End A Marriage
“We got together when we were young, I’m talking like 13 or 14 years old. We were a great couple and we truly loved one another.
Years passed by and we both started to study at a university, building our life together, and finally rented our own flat. Shortly after that, she got pregnant which was for both of us more a blessing than a curse. We also decided to get married before the kid was born. We were poor students, so we went to the registry office to make it legal (tax benefits) and a few months later had a small ceremony with family and friends.
One month and two days later, she died an unexpected death. A vital vein in her head exploded because of a brain tumor. There weren’t any early symptoms. We were married for five months. The child was never born.
I have accepted the situation. It is a very cruel thing to go through but the aim is to go on. I knew I had to work my way back to a ‘normal life’ or I would too would cease living.”
This Is The Worst Reason To Get Married
“I married a guy after dating for a year. He was deployed most of that year though. It was a total of maybe four months of actually being able to see each other. He got back from deployment, we got married a month after that. The marriage ended four months after that.
He started going on duty more often than normal. Usually, it was once a month. He would go every other weekend, and sometimes every week. One day, I ended up running into one of the wives of a guy from his command and she asked why I wasn’t at the bar the other night. It turns out, he went to the bar, got wasted, and stayed at his brother’s place that night. He then came back from ‘duty’ the next morning. He would even leave in uniform and tell me that he ended up switching with some guy who had kids, or family in town.
Then his phone would go off throughout the night. So much that one night it vibrated off of the table when he was sleeping. I pick it up and saw the message on the Google chat app saying ‘I miss u.’ I confronted him about it and he yelled at me about not trusting him. He was constantly texting a girl from back home. He had conveniently gone home a few weeks before the message. I didn’t go because the flight was too expensive. He slept with this girl when he went back home.
I filed for divorce, and my sister-in-law (married to his brother) started telling me what he was telling his brother. He cheated on me while we were dating and even while he was deployed. While we were separated (mandatory one-year separation in my state), he got the girl he cheated on me with pregnant.
I believe that he never loved me. This was just a long scheme to get out of the barracks. I was young and dumb, but it was a learning experience. I’m now happily married to my wonderful husband of five years.”
Before The Ink Had Time To Dry
“My dad got his second marriage annulled after two weeks. They knew each other for eight months and got engaged after dating for sixth of those months. They met while he was on a business trip to Colorado. He lives in New Mexico. She was insistent on her entire family moving from Colorado to New Mexico so that our families could ‘get closer.’ Her children are both in their 20s or 30s and still live at home, and she took care of her elderly mother as well. All four of them didn’t work and lived off of alimony from her ex-husband. She was clearly using my dad’s financial status. There were lots of red flags, and my brother and I told my dad he should slow things down.
They got married, and every time I saw them for the next few days, all they talked about was hooking up. She frequently said things like ‘I’m so good in bed, your father should be paying me.’
One night, after dinner, they started updating their wills. She asked my dad to write my brother and I out of the will, and write her children in. Shouting ensued for hours. The next morning, she was gone, but sent a lawyer to try and convince my brother and me to evacuate my dad’s house and give her ‘her rightful property.’ The prenup was excellent, so she didn’t get anything in the divorce.
She now works as a barista at a Starbucks, and somehow supports herself, her two children, and elderly mother on a minimum wage salary.”
This Guy Did It All
“I should start off by saying that, while we were technically married a full year, we were only together for six months of that time. How? Well, you see, the guy couldn’t stop drinking and driving when he was out of jail. He served three months and then another three months during that year of marriage.
Yes, I married a man with a severe drinking problem. He also frequently used the fact that he had seizures to get out of his job. He would tell them that he was going to the doctor’s/ER/having seizures. He would tell me that he was going to work. He would then sit at a local thrift shop, pawning my family’s stuff (with whom we lived) as well as family heirlooms in order to get his next fix. He did it so often that he was never able to hold a job because he was never there. I didn’t take stock of just how much was missing from my house until after he was gone.
The short list of things that he put me through included: cheating on me with an ex and probably more, taking off his ring and asking for a divorce when we fought and making me cry, blaming me for a miscarriage, leaving me to go into/experience/wake up alone to the emergency surgery for the miscarriage (I could have bled to death) – in favor of going out and drinking with his brother, putting his hands on me when he drank, taking pictures of me without clothing, without my knowledge or consent while sleeping.
How ridiculous is that? After all of the strife he put me through, I still remember the most egregious issue as that of Valentine’s Day. We were in a store and checking out when he asked for my card to go get a drink. I waited for him at the front of the store. This guy came out, pleased as a clam, and handed me a bouquet of roses and a heart of chocolate. There was another bouquet and box of chocolate for my mother.
That’s right, he spent $60 OF MY OWN MONEY, on junk I could’ve gotten for myself. Also, I am and have always been lactose intolerant.”
When Enough Is Enough
“Ironically enough, it was almost like sealing the deal was what made me realize how ludicrous the whole thing was and just how desperately I wanted out.
I had been with him for three years up until that point (16 to 19 years old), and he was abusive from the first time we hung out. Due to many reasons, some of which I haven’t even worked out, I dated him anyway and obviously, the abuse continued and actually worsened. By the time we set a wedding date, I was nearing the crux of my poor mental health from him and other issues compounding, and just two short weeks after I said I do, I changed my mind and said no I don’t and left. He tried to violate me the day I moved out as he wrestled me to the ground trying to lure me into his web one last time, I suppose.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t the complete end yet. We ended up hooking up one more time about a year later and spoke a couple more times over the next few years. We had officially been married but separated for six years, and we didn’t officially get our divorce until just last summer.
It’s been a long nine years of pain and pure unadulterated misery. I’m glad it’s over. I should have called the cops the first time he put his hands on me, but I was in major denial for a long time refusing to even utter the word abuse in relation to him, not even admitting it to myself until two years after we started dating. I’m much, much better now emotionally and a lot stronger as a person. I do count that as a plus to be gained from the whole thing, I don’t let myself be pushed around anymore and I have no problem quickly acknowledging when I think I’m being mistreated, it’s made me more content with how things happen in my life. I’ve got a great support system, always have had my back through it all and always will.”
Marriage Shouldn’t Be A Form Of Revenge
“I worked with a guy who got married to a single mom that he dated for six months. It is the craziest story I’ve ever heard. He was head over heels buying her a house and everything, but he was a young somewhat well-off idiot in the relationship department.
On their wedding night, he and his wife went to their new home. The wife decided to pressure her new husband to invite her ex-boyfriend and his girlfriend over for some drinking games. The husband knew they were friends and thought it was messed up and didn’t want them over on their wedding night. She insisted, so he said okay.
Something flipped because he realized that she was not over the ex-boyfriend. The new husband, the house, and the new life were all to get back at him or to make him jealous or whatever was going on in her head. He lost it and started to drink heavily that night and yelled at the ex-boyfriend, kicking him out of the house in the process. They fought for two days and ended up not going on their honeymoon before she finally left.
Marriage was annulled at the end of the month.”
Don’t Be Like This Guy
“We were both young, and we had a whirlwind of a relationship, as flash fire and temporary as it was.
I was fresh from the West Coast, visiting the Midwest to travel with a cousin of mine. I was working in a bar, and he was stationed in the town.
We had only been dating for a short amount of time when he invited me on a road trip to visit his family a state away. The trip went well, we got along like a house on fire, and I was enamored with him. His family liked me and I them.
We rushed into marriage like a person stranded in the ocean chooses to drink the sea water out of a desperate longing for satiation. We were both drowning in our lives but bonded through delusion powered by youthful arrogance and substance abuse.
Thinking about it now, I think we both knew it was a mistake but had an even balance of self-loathing and hoped that led us to agree to it.
We didn’t have a ceremony because I said I didn’t care. We lived on base and lived the lie while in private we were extremely dysfunctional and unhappy. We each had our own emotional issues, thus far undiagnosed. I knew I was messed up though, and I was more self-reflective and open than he was. Much of his unhappiness was due to no longer wanting to be in the military. This went on for a few months and he was discharged from the military and we went to live with his family hoping to find a new start in that state.
Red flags everywhere, and still, I persisted.
He ended up leaving me and moving to California one night and I woke up the next day at his parents’ house realizing I was marooned and needed out.
I went home and he didn’t speak to me for years. I successfully rebuilt my life. I later found out he moved to my hometown because I was being stalked anonymously. I would receive anonymous messages on my blog and from fake social media accounts. Found letters with no sender at my house. I became suspicious that it was him and I found out through a mutual friend that he had in fact moved there and I wasn’t losing my mind.
He never manned up and physically tried to find me, or explain, or apologize.”
“His Smile Never Reached His Eyes”
“My cousin divorced her husband only a few months after getting married. They hadn’t been together long. He changed drastically after getting married, started cheating in person and online, stating that he owned her now so she couldn’t do anything about it. She and her son (from a previous relationship) got out.
Everyone in her family, including me, was creeped out by him. His smile never reached his eyes, and in hindsight, he was just always false. She never saw it, despite warnings. She wanted to be loved and married, to be in a stable situation and life, so she rushed into it.”
She Was In It For The Marriage, He Just Wanted A Honeymoon
“I was divorced within a year of getting married. Honestly, I think he just wanted to go on the honeymoon to Las Vegas. We had been together for four years when we got married.
After the honeymoon, he changed. Part of it was that he developed a serious allergy, which made him sick. I was supportive. Then he was diagnosed with COPD. I was still supportive. He wasn’t able to work, so I was working all the overtime I could get. He wouldn’t do anything but sit and watch TV all day. He was prescribed medicine that helped and he started to feel better. When I suggested he could go back to work, he started feeling bad again.
He admitted after we decided on divorce that he had stopped taking his medicine because it was too expensive. I discovered he was having an online relationship with one or more other women, and he refused to understand why it was a problem. That and the fact that he allowed his mother to make fun of me constantly was enough to make me initiate the divorce.
He now lives with his mom and dad and doesn’t work. I have moved on and am in a relationship with a man who is the opposite of my ex-husband. I still feel bad, like I feel I did everything I could, but bottom line is, my ex-husband didn’t love me and used me.”
It All Started With The Wedding
“He started drinking on our wedding day and never stopped. He had only drank once or twice socially before that. Then he got into heavy substances and was fired from at least three different jobs within six months because of his issues.
He became physically and emotionally abusive (I developed severe anxiety during my marriage that is still plaguing me after 11 years, and I have a huge scar on my finger from the time he nearly cut my finger off during an argument). He forced himself on me against my will often, swung a board at my head, and flushed my birth control so I could begin popping out his demanded three children. The last straw was when I found out the girl living down the street from us was pregnant with his child. I had to pack up my things and leave him before he came home for lunch one day, since the last time I tried to leave he pulled me out of the car by my feet and I smacked my face on the concrete.
It’s absolutely terrifying. The police didn’t help either. He started stalking me at home and work, and the cops didn’t do anything. One cop even told me to ‘go talk to him because he obviously misses you.’ I had notes left on my car, my car was egged, and I didn’t feel safe again until I changed jobs and moved away.
I was very young when we got married, and we weren’t together very long before the marriage, but I never saw any of that coming. I have been to therapy off and on ever since I left him.”
And Then The Sheriff Showed Up
“The day after the wedding, a sheriff showed up on our doorstep with child support papers for a 3-month-old baby. It turns out he had been sleeping with his coworker. I was willing to look past the indiscretion but when he refused to take responsibility for his child, I couldn’t handle it anymore. The kid shouldn’t have to suffer because his dad is an idiot. The divorce was final 11 months after our wedding day.
In all honesty, we had been together so long (high school sweethearts) I was afraid of what life would be like without him. My thought at first was ‘maybe he just wanted to experience someone else.’ I felt like I would be able to forgive that, but to turn his back on his child was unforgivable to me.”
A Different Kind Of Arrangement
“Immediately after getting legally married, he became crazily possessive and physically abusive. He wouldn’t let me out of his sight, wouldn’t let me talk to anyone, work, leave the house, and said that as his wife I was basically his property. Then he started saying he wanted to have a kid ASAP. I got out as soon as the first opportunity presented itself.
I hadn’t really known him before we got together, but we were together for a little over a year before we got married. I saw the signs, and I recognized them then. But I ignored them anyway thinking I could handle it.
I managed to take advantage of an opportunity when he was gone for a week to get my life together and when he came back, I had all his stuff packed and my parents to back me up basically, and I dropped him off at his parents’ house. I immediately moved in with some friends, and he tried harassing me over the phone for a while but I just ignored it. When I had all the paperwork for the divorce ready, he wouldn’t respond to any of my messages or emails, so I called his dad, with whom I’d heard he’d last been living. Turns out he was in prison (for assault and armed robbery), so it made the divorce harder but I haven’t seen him since I left him at his parents’ house and he’s still in prison. I now live in a different place.”