Newly Divorced

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            You read correctly. My pastor recently made me aware of a bumper sticker which read “Newly Divorced”. It was just as proudly displayed as all of those “Just Married” stickers with which we are more familiar. What people are proud of amazes me. What is next, stickers saying “Newly Fired”, “Suck as Parent”, or “Horrible Neighbor”. Is the person reading that sticker just supposed to assume the divorce was completely the spouse’s fault? I guess the next step for a sticker reader would be I have to talk to that newly divorced person, and find out if they are right for me. Honestly it’s just sad. Whenever a marriage ends there is pain, lost hope, and disillusionment. Today, in this country divorce is occurring at an epidemic rate. That’s one reason I write this blog. We need to fight that trend.


            We have covered a lot of topics in making marriage work and in selecting the right mate. One I don’t think we have adequately covered is that you can only fix one person in a marriage. That is you. Too many people go into marriage thinking, given time I can fix all of those annoying problems my spouse has. In reality, that kind of thinking is just going to set you up for failure.

             When Crystal and I first got married her sister (not married at that time) told her about the things I did that Crystal should work on changing; whether it was spending too much time playing sports or planning things without consulting her. If Crystal mentioned anything to me it was as a suggestion and related to a specific instance. She never accused me of being selfish or inconsiderate. Through the years I did take her suggestions into consideration. I did it because I cared about her and wanted her to be happy. It wasn’t because she made everything into an issue and was determined to change me. Over that same period of time, I guarantee, she changed things she was doing to accommodate my needs, or wants.


            So if you are thinking of marrying someone; make sure you can accept them for who they are. Realize that the only person you can change is the person in the mirror (and I don’t mean with your spouse standing behind you). Making the right choice is critical. Being willing to change yourself is critical. While initially the “Just divorced” bumper sticker may seem clever and even amusing, it covers a lot more than part of a bumper. Using humor to cover pain is nothing new.

Category: Make Marriage Last

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