Divorce Can Teach
Divorces can be very ugly. Painful arguments, infidelity, and emotions that turn cold can mark a relationship leading to a divorce. The process itself can be venomous. Spouses might turn their children against their mother or father, they might try to get as much property as possible or restrict child visitation rights as much as possible to punish the spouse. And after all the legal expenses and adversarial encounters, a divorcee is left to ponder his or her decisions, what went wrong, and how he or she was at fault.
But, perhaps divorcees can make the best of their divorces, learn from them, and grow as people. Some celebrities have talked about lessons they learned from marriage and divorce.
After reportedly having many affairs, Tiger Woods divorced his wife Elin Nordegren in 2010, agreeing to pay her an astonishing sum of $750 million. Woods stated that the divorce process had not wasted his year, that you have to find the positives in any situation, and that he learned a lot about himself and how he could become a better person. I can see how one would have great difficulty seeing the bright side after losing hundreds of millions of dollars, but Woods does still have great wealth and a fantastic golf swing. I suppose breaking a relationship by having affairs could be a good way to learn integrity.
Stunning actress Olivia Wilde divorced her husband in 2011. She says ending the eight year marriage was very hard on her, believing that she was a failure because she couldn’t make it work. But then she realized that the failed marriage meant she did not have to be perfect, and saw this as a wonderful concept. Further, after being married for almost all of her young adulthood, she believes it’s important for her to learn how to live alone and not be defined by another person or a relationship. These are wise words. You’ll always be dissatisfied if you always expect yourself to be perfect. And only you can make yourself happy, so if you depend on a relationship for that happiness, you lose a lot of control over your life.
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Jennifer Lopez echoed these sentiments after her divorce from Marc Anthony, saying that “you’ve got to be OK on your own before you can be OK with somebody else…And until you value yourself enough and love yourself enough to know that, you can’t really have a healthy relationship.” Jennifer Aniston advanced similar thoughts after her break from Brad Pitt, saying she never was nor will be defined by her relationship, and that she hopes everyone could move on and be happy.
All of these realizations that you need to make yourself happy outside of a relationship indicate that many people are dependent on relationships for their happiness and to help define their lives. They would perhaps be luckier to learn these lessons without investing years of their lives or going through nasty divorces, but sometimes you can’t figure something out without experiencing the alternative.
No one’s circumstances are perfect; everyone can find things to complain about in their lives. So ultimately, what choice do we have but to view things from a positive perspective?