There are two explanations for why we do what we do: to run from pain and/or to run to pleasure. Aren’t these our basic motivations and reasons for why we do things? We either want to avoid pain and discomfort or we want to experience happiness and pleasure.
So, why do people divorce? It is because they are attempting to flee from painful circumstances they are living in (their marriage) and/or they are trying to experience pleasure and happiness (which they aren’t experiencing at home). We could list specific reasons why people divorce, but all those reasons would generally fall under the two motivations mentioned above. People who divorce are fleeing from something and/or are running to something (or someone) else.
I got this photo from blogger Joanne Kraft
The expectation of divorce is that when I leave this unhappy, unfulfilling marriage, my next state, either singleness or remarriage, is going to make me happier than I am now. Divorce is seen as the avenue to a better life. But is that expectation true?
Norman Wright, a marriage counselor, says that, “Divorce has failed to deliver on its promises of happiness” (One Marriage Under God, p.107). Divorce may be a way out of a stagnant and disappointing marriage, but it is not a sure-fire entry into happiness and fulfillment either. Instead, the newly divorced person frequently finds out that the divorced life is fraught with so many more problems than they imagined.
Norman Wright identifies some of these disappointing “surprises.” Loneliness is a frequent companion to the divorced person. Even if the ex-spouse was a dud at communicating, at least he was there! There are financial woes. “How do we divide up the bills and debts?” is a fun problem to work with! In law relations become complicated. Special celebrations of family members, such as birthdays, anniversaries and weddings, become a social nightmare. Custody rights become the grounds for fierce battles, with each parent trying to prove they are the best parent. These are just some of the problems that plague the divorced couple. Does this sound like happiness?
Divorce is one of the highest stress-inducing experiences in life. In fact, psychologists and counselors rank divorce higher on the stress scale than losing a spouse to death. When a spouse dies you feel the loss, hurt and loneliness. When you are divorced you often feel the same sense of loss, hurt and loneliness as with a death, but you can throw rejection into the mix as well. A loved one who died has left us but has not rejected us. Rejection is an additional pain we experience with divorce.
Divorce promises much but delivers little. If your marriage is strained and stressed, please seek help. Today. Don’t wait. Begin working on the problems as soon as possible, while they are still relatively small. Don’t give them time to grow. And this article is not meant to minimize whatever problems we are experiencing now and the pain they may be causing (such as addiction, abuse, etc.). But, it is meant to encourage us to rethink divorce as a solution.
Photo compliments of Jenny Ann Photography
God is present in your marriage. Malachi 2:15 says, “Has not the Lord made them one? In flesh and spirit they are his.” Your marriage belongs to God. He has honored the sanctity of your union. It is holy ground. So, care for it with all of the love and devotion you can summon. Over time, he can make your marriage the fulfilling relationship it is meant to be.