Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

I need inspirational stories from happy divorced ladies please!

(60 Posts)
orsomethinglikethat Wed 20-Feb-13 11:20:11

So it looks like its all over after 10 years and 2 dcs. We are still living together while we save some money for one of us to move out which is not much fun. I'm a sahm with not many qualifications and youngest dc is still a baby so it looks like I will be on benefits to begin with. Not exactly what I had planned but I'm trying to look on the bright side, I will be free and in control of my own life! Anyone been through this and come out the other side?

LittleEdie Wed 20-Feb-13 11:25:49

I've recently separated, and can tell you I'm so much happier. Don't know what I'm going to do for money, but the freedom from stress is brilliant. All the pain and difficulty was in the run up to the decision, since I've left it's been great.

We only had one week of 'limbo' whilst we waited for my flat to be ready and it was really hard, it gets easier once you go. In my opinion.

orsomethinglikethat Wed 20-Feb-13 11:57:31

Thanks LittleEdie, that's good to know. It doesn't seem real atm and I don't think he really believes its over while we're all still living together. We are seriously skint atm as he is so irresponsible with money (one of the many reasons I've had enough) so it will definitely go on for longer than a week sad

LittleEdie Wed 20-Feb-13 12:22:20

No, my DH was in denial (probably still is) however getting the keys and standing in the back garden of my new flat on a sunny December day, overlooking the river, with a lone gull wheeling in the blue sky was one of the best moments of my life. New Year's Eve (alone) was brilliant. We were married 10 years with one DC, and I when I got to the point of realising that things were not going to change, that's when I knew I had to go (makes it sound easy!)

I'm happy smile

Exh is still an arse, but now I don't have to sleep with headphones on because we reached the point where even his breathing annoyed me!

I met someone new at 42, so I'm even happier now, but leaving exh was the best decision I'd made in a long time.

Dahlen Wed 20-Feb-13 13:29:19

I'm happy. Left with two small children in tow. No social life at all for the first 18 months, but never once regretted my decision and instantly felt freer and happier than I had for a very long time indeed.

I am very happy. I've worked hard to fill my life with work, activities and friends and, of course, my beautiful DC. I love being single. So much so, in fact, that I actually really struggled when I accidentally met the most wonderful man who I connected with to an amazing degree, as I really didn't want to give up being single. I've got over that now, but if it didn't work out for whatever reason, i know I could happily go back to being single and love every minute of it.

Always better to be on your own than with someone who makes you unhappy.

MirandaWest Wed 20-Feb-13 13:33:17

I separated two years ago after nearly 11 years of marriage. Is much better. DC actually see more of XH than they used to and I am much happier than I was for the last few years of my marriage. Also met someone v nice last year and that is good too.
It isn't always plain sailing but overall is much better than feeling stuck in a relationship that had stopped.

HotDAMNlifeisgood Wed 20-Feb-13 13:36:28

I am divorced and I am very happy. The happiness is a direct result of the divorce

Like all transitions into the unknown, it was tough and scary at times. But it was so the right thing to do. It's my proudest achievement, in fact.

Split two years ago. Divorced as ok January. We were together 13 years, 3 dcs, and no family around. I was working full time in a relatively low paid job.

But life was so much easier after I left. I have never regretted it for one moment.

I now have a new life, a new lovely dp, the dcs are happy and settled and I am happier than I have ever been.

XH told me I was intrinsically fucked up and would never be happy. Dp tells me I'm wonderful and loving, and we care about each other.

Life is good.

Anniegetyourgun Wed 20-Feb-13 17:59:12

Whenever I'm asked for my marital status and I reply "divorced", I get one of two reactions. One (often from men, I've noticed) is "I'm sorry", to which I reply "Hey, don't be sorry, I worked hard for that divorce". They laugh, but often look a little uncomfortable. The other (more often from women around my own age) is "it's good, isn't it?"

As the saying goes, it is infinitely better to be alone than to walk badly accompanied.

meddie Wed 20-Feb-13 18:06:40

Divorced after 4 years, 2 kids under 4 and financially screwed by ex who skipped the country and left me to deal with all the debts he had run up. After bills etc had £50 a week to live on for food, clothes, petrol, everything else.
Never for one moment considered I was better off with him than without him. best bloody thing I did.
I was happier, kids were happier. Since then I have been promoted, debts are paid off. kids are grown and I got my own house, travel and do charity work yearly and I love being single.
There were stages where it was soul crushingly hard (financially) , but they pass and it was so worth it in the end for my own happiness and sanity.

raspberyfool Wed 20-Feb-13 18:45:06

Recently divorced xh walked out 9 months ago for turns out ow . Realised im now happier than i have been in years. The girls are happy , i have money at the end of the month, i don't fear phone calls from bills not being paid , I've found my friends again, I've lost weight,I've started re training in my dream job, i don't get woken up by snoring oh the list just goes on and on. I thought i was happily married but i actually wasn't. Now im happily divorced grin

MisForMumNotMaid Wed 20-Feb-13 18:52:07

I divorced just over five years ago after 13 years together, 11 married. On the day he left, completely out the blue, the DC were 1 and 3. I had just won a business start up award and secured two years funding for 'our' business. So he left for another women, crippled the financial stability I'd just created for us all and didn't have a job to offer support to us.

Five years on i'm happily remarried the boys are now 9 and 7 and have a 2 year old sister. I didn't realise how trapped i'd become.

CallSignCharlie Wed 20-Feb-13 18:59:18

Haven't really got anything to add as I'm in a similar position to you op. except that my h is in total denial about everything and I'm facing the prospect of being the one to leave, (sorry for hijack) best of luck with everything and I hope you come out the other side stronger and happier
it's great to hear inspirational stories from those who have been there and done that . I will continue reading this thread with interest (and admiration and hope)

SobaSoma Wed 20-Feb-13 19:13:50

Another very happy divorced lady here OP. Like HotDAMN says, my divorce is my proudest achievement yet! ExH is in fact going through the break-up of his subsequent relationship at the moment and I feel genuinely sorry for him. I can tell he's really envious of me and tells people that he's never seen me more contented. There's a blindingly bright light at the end of the tunnel.....

BigGiantCowWithAKnockKnockTail Wed 20-Feb-13 19:27:58

I'm so happily divorced. We split up almost two years ago, just before DD's 1st birthday and after 10 years together. The divorce process wasn't particularly happy and XH has been a serious arse at various times over the last two years and I think denial could well have been a factor for him. However, we now seem to be at a place where we're both happy with our lives and so we can be nice to each other which is a huge relief.

The main reason for my happiness is that I finally know who I am and I've realised that I actually quite like myself which is something I never had when I was with him. I get to make my own decisions about how I run mine and DD's lives and the freedom that comes with that is just wonderful. Yes, it's bloody hard work being a LP but right now I'd find it hard to share my life totally with another man.

Good luck OP. I really hope it doesn't drag on too long for you.

LemonDrizzled Wed 20-Feb-13 19:47:05

I'm nearly there - about two weeks till the decree absolute comes through.
I was married 24 years and my DC are grown up now.
Life with XH was pressured, miserable and tense for the last two years. He became quite abusive at the end. Life on my own is laid back cheerful and busy. I have a lovely DP who lives 10 miles away (and no plans to live with him yet!)
I love my Little House and my life.
You won't regret it OP. Just take it a step at a time and look after yourself!

goodenuffmum Wed 20-Feb-13 20:13:28

I'm marking my place here...

'D'h finally leaving this week after devastating me in October by telling me that he no longer loved me.

All these weeks later and I'm the one who has had to say that enough was enough and he needs to leave.

I am scared of being alone (after 15 yrs) and excited at getting rid of the horrible tension that's been in the house since he made that announcement.

So please, all you mnetters, fill us newbies with all the positive stories post seperation and beyond!

Tell you what orsomethinglikethat why don't we hold hands and jump into the unknown together? grin

HotDAMNlifeisgood Wed 20-Feb-13 20:16:21

The main reason for my happiness is that I finally know who I am and I've realised that I actually quite like myself which is something I never had when I was with him.


kinkyfuckery Wed 20-Feb-13 20:23:57

I have been separated over 4 years, divorced almost 2.

On paper, my life should be pretty shit. I'm very much single (though through choice), reliant on benefits, have major neighbour and housing problems, one of my children has recently been given a mental health diagnosis, and I have concerns about the other. I have had to put all my life plans on hold to care for my children - though hopefully just temporarily.

But.... honestly... I'm the happiest I've been, because I don't have to answer to HIM! It's taken me four years - and whilst I still have a good bitch about his behaviour on the phone to my bestie - I'm finally managing to detach from him, and not let what he says and does affect MY life! Obviously, when it effects the children, I turn into Mama Bear, but for the most part, I feel very meh, whatever, about him!

smileyforest Wed 20-Feb-13 20:46:29

Divorced on Jan 28th....separated for 2 years.....Ok financially it is tough...but I would rather be where I am much freedom to be myself and not living in an atmosphere is pure intentions to move in together yet...he is remarrying...poor woman.......!! Yes I'm HAPPY at 52!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

sarahseashell Wed 20-Feb-13 21:26:45

yes far happier - I was in pretty much same position as you OP - it was hard for first couple of years but now I've never been happier - loving my freedom, built myself back up to better, have a lovely family life with dcs and a little social life of my own too. Now and again I get that sense of slight surprise at how great life is! I'd never have thought it a few years ago so hang in there it really does get better and better smile I just never realised how draining my exh was - ball & chain when I look back on it wink

orsomethinglikethat Wed 20-Feb-13 22:16:55

Thank you all so much, this thread is so encouraging! I haven't told anyone in rl yet so its good to be able to talk on here.

goodenuffmum thanks for the handhold, its very much appreciated. I would like to offer the other hand to CallSignCharlie , lets all leap into our fab single adventure together grin

LittleEdie Wed 20-Feb-13 23:40:07

It feels like a really, really big deal to tell people in RL. But I was pleasantly suprised by how well people took it. People were overwhelmingly supportive.

orsomethinglikethat Wed 20-Feb-13 23:59:36

I know, it just makes it all real when everyone knows! Sorry to dripfeed but things have been very on/off between us for the last year or so and I think friends and family are sick of hearing about it (can't say I blame them - I'm sick of it too).

Tonight he's been begging for another chance and it was quite nice to think for a while that it could all be ok but I've heard it all before and nothing ever changes.

LittleEdie Thu 21-Feb-13 00:38:47

Moving out meant a massive sense of relief at not having to listen to/deal with his protestations that he can change, it'll all be amazing if I stay etc etc etc.

When you read on here about horrible men able to persuade right thinking women of the impossible, you think 'Don't fall for it!'. But when it's coming at you in a unique way from someone you once loved it can feel wonderful to imagine that their castles in the sky could be true. But there comes a point when you've heard it once too often.

CallSignCharlie Thu 21-Feb-13 16:44:00

Thank you Orsomething, handhold gratefully accepted :-)
I have had amazing rl support form friends and family. I feel so relieved now I've told people
You stay strong and keep posting . I'm just about to start a thread of my own as I'm really not sure where I go from here

comingintomyown Thu 21-Feb-13 17:11:33

Almost divorced after xh left 3 years ago.

We were together 17 years with 2 DC

He lined up an ow but actually our marriage was over so she was irrelevant.

The first nine months were up and down emotionally and a a difficult time for me even knowing it was for the best

Once past that though yes I am sooo much happier and a contented single

Search for the thread about why I love being single which was on relationships recently for loads of positive stories

In the meantime my top 3 are

Be myself 100% no twisting myself out of shape to be what I thought he wanted
Live on an emotional even keel
Do as I please about EVERYTHING

ConfusedishSay Thu 21-Feb-13 17:45:54

These are really encouraging fact a bit TOO encouraging! hmm
I´m in a horrible place right now trying to decide what to do in a marriage that feels dead but with a hubby desperate to keep it going and an impossible financial and logistical situation for a split! Really, I should be searching out posts from MISERABLE divorcees who wished they hadn´t done it! Are there any of those around, actually??
The idea of freedom to be on my own and share custody just seems a wonderful option right now.....Good luck OP -I´m trying not to feel envious wink

akaWisey Thu 21-Feb-13 18:12:45

My divorce came through in December. Been waiting for the absolute for 18 months whilst the finances were sorted. It was hard for a while but I grew stronger and more confidant than I've been for a long time. DD and I are closer now too.

Two weeks ago I ended a relationship which was very stressful for me. I'd learned a lot from my marriage breakdown and knew what I had to do. As Annie said upthread, ALL the men who know we have split up (despite knowing it was me who instigated it) said they were sorry - and guess what? ALL the women said "well done".

Life is so much less stressful now.

Daddelion Thu 21-Feb-13 18:21:01

I'm happier apart than I was married, and so is my ex wife.
I think it's been a massively positive,life-changing experience for me. P

Is it possible to think that you'll both be happier apart, would that make it easier?

comingintomyown Fri 22-Feb-13 08:08:26

I am sure there are women out there who regret leaving their husbands just as there are those who are happily married.

If my marriage had stayed as it was for the first 8 years or so them I expect I could have counted myself among the latter

My xh left but I had thought about it many times but never had the courage to do it. I didnt worry about being on my own just the whole package, house money etc but it all worked out.

Often you see written on MN that marriage is set up for the wellbeing of men and when I was married would have argued against that. Now being single for 3 years and looking into other peoples marriages and what I see on here I agree.

corblimeymadam Fri 22-Feb-13 08:22:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Redflagcatcher Fri 22-Feb-13 08:41:30

Another one here who is happily out of a marriage.
He cheated on me leading up to our wedding, I found out a few days after we had got married. We split up a year later. I never wanted to worry about what he was doing again. He tried to make it work, but it was a deal breaker for me.

Now I live with my two lovely dc's, in a gorgeous (because its mine) rented house, happy and stable, no dramas and my mental and physical health is better than its ever been. The dc's had about a year of minor ups and downs which I expected but now are content with seeing their dad regularly.

He remains a chaotic, money drain with bad dress sense and a pot belly.

I am so much better off without him and wonder what I saw in him.

People do say "sorry" when I say I'm a single mum, I reply that I'm happy actually!! It makes me so sad that our society defines people's status or happiness as higher if they are in a relationship. it doesnt make sense when so many are desperately sad and unhappy in a relationship. It's just ridiculous.

I have actually had married women come round to my house telling me they are jealous of my situation and that they want to leave their marriage but can't......

I can honestly say there is nothing I can think of that was better being in marriage (and we were happy for 10 years) than how I feel now.

comingintomyown Fri 22-Feb-13 09:36:11

" He remains a chaotic, money drain with bad dress sense and a pot belly." That made me laugh !

I think I should add in the interest of balanced reporting that the first 6-9 months were full of trembling. I would be smoking in the garden at 5am with my stomach doing flips one minute and by lunchtime thanking my lucky stars he had had the courage to end it. There were many, many heartbreaking moments and firsts to deal with and it was very much a case of taking each day as it came. I was always able to be logical though and recognise that at some point this would end and that as we did need to split this was simply what would have to be gone through.

Nobody has said "sorry" to me about being single although I will sometimes get a "have you thought about dating yet ?" as if this is something that will inevitably come to me grin

Lovingfreedom Fri 22-Feb-13 10:54:58

The clue's in the name....go forth and enjoy your freedom...sooner you can get him out of the house the better. wine

NicknameTaken Fri 22-Feb-13 11:07:51

Another happy divorcee here! As Redflag says, the great benefit is no dramas. As it happens, my ex is still a great one for manufacturing drama, which I've moaned about on other threads, but it's still a lot less drama than I had living with him every day.

Fleecyslippers Fri 22-Feb-13 11:08:26

Its hard. Its definately hard. My Ex was/is abusive and had an affair. The split is very acrimonious and he and OW are relentless. BUT I have no regrets. I AM myself again. Despite all that he told me I AM ok. I am financially secure. I have a brand new car on the drive - cars previously were in his name. I have a holiday booked and I can make my own decisions and live my life as I want to.

Lovingfreedom Fri 22-Feb-13 14:58:07

I'm just weighing that up Fleecyslippers .... abusive, unfaithful man vs brand new car and a holiday .... hmmm .... good for you!!! wine

orsomethinglikethat Fri 22-Feb-13 18:12:30

Thank you all again so much, its nice to know theres light at the end of this seemingly long tunnel grin

belgianbun you just described exactly how I feel atm, you can have a handhold too!

CallSignCharlie I just read your thread but didn't have anything useful to add, it sounds like you will be a million times better off once you've got this scary first step out of the way.

Purpleknickers Fri 22-Feb-13 18:47:18

I'm happy, after 20 years with the same man and 14 years married, I thought I'd never walk or breathe again. 4 years on and I'm happier than ever and have been for the last 3 years once I got over the shock of his flit.

The future is bright... Go for it. smile

DiscretionAdvised Fri 22-Feb-13 18:52:03

Can I join with the hand holding?
Decided to separate from DH in september. Had four months of hell living in the same house. He moved out three weeks ago.

Initially the relief has been immense not to have the constant stress of not knowing when an argument was going to erupt.

Emotionally I am on a bit of a rollercoaster with huge highs and deep lows. I'm in the early stages of a complicated romance with a colleague. He is in the process of leaving his DP (we have not ended our relationships for each other to be clear!).

I do feel deep guilt at seeing DH so unhappy. He agrees that the marriage wasn't happy but I suspect if I suggested he come home then he would be here like a shot. We have three DC's so it's hard work, they seem to be OK.

I have yet to truly find my happy single head, but it do get it occasionally. I sometimes enjoy the evenings to myself but at other times feel lonely.

DiscretionAdvised Fri 22-Feb-13 18:56:11


I am still in the 4 am smokes in the garden phase despite sleeping pills. tis hard. I desperately want to quite smoking too!

wallypops Fri 22-Feb-13 20:00:06

So happy to be divorced. Been divorced now for 5 years - longer than my marriage and I it is the think guaranteed to cheer me up every day. My beautiful DDs were 2 & 3 at the time, and its been great for us all frankly.

I do not know why I thought it was shameful. It isn't. It's bloody brilliant.

orsomethinglikethat Sat 23-Feb-13 11:40:21

DiscretionAdvised of course you can join in, the more the merrier!

Stbx came home last night saying he agrees with me that we can't work through our issues, he isn't willing to change on the things that I told him are dealbreakers for me and that staying together is only going to fuck up our dcs so it looks like we finally agree on something!

Ils know now and they have been absolutely scathing about me but I knew that was coming, they seem totally unable to see him as an adult which imo is what has caused him and us major problems. He is not a bad person but he is so childish and irresponsible and they justify his behaviour and bail him out time and time again so that he never has to take responsibility for himself. I told my lovely friend yesterday and she has been wonderful as usual smile

First baby steps out of the way and the world is still turning grin

corblimeymadam Sat 23-Feb-13 12:11:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MardyPants Sat 23-Feb-13 22:46:50

Together 7 1/2 years, married 6 months, booted him due to his 12 month affair (ie it started before we got married = gross). Barely even remember any of it now - it seems like something out of someone else's life! - and have no idea how I managed to convince myself I was happy with a lying, cheating fuckface with a drink problem who put everyone and everything before me. Good riddance grin
Couldn't be happier! Bit skint like, but there's worse things!!!

typographicerrors Sat 23-Feb-13 23:26:33

what a relief to find a board that has happy stories. I have begun to initiate a separation from my partner and at the moment everything feels so bleak and difficult. I will keep reading here with interest.

orsomethinglikethat Sun 03-Mar-13 12:08:32

Is anyone still around?

dothraki Sun 03-Mar-13 12:36:40

Yy - another happily divorced. The first 18 months were very difficult. My dc's were 1 & 4. I felt like I could not breathe. I didn't want to go out socially, and he left me with a mountain of debt. Luckily I had a good job, and cleared my debts. I think staying in - at night helped me rediscover myself. When he left he blamed it all on me - and I was dumb enough to believe him. I gained so much from being alone. I realised its far worse to be in a bad marriage that to be alone. Once trust has been broken I do not believe it can be rebuilt. Good luck - I wish we'd had mumsnet then - as I'd have realised he was a twat alot quicker ! I am very happy and have a wonderful family - he is all alone and bitter and twisted.

Ikeameatballs Sun 03-Mar-13 13:41:37

I really needed to read this thread. Told p 2 weeks ago that I thought we should split up, he moved out 1 week ago. I am mostly happier but still get feelings of regret at how it could have been (but wouldn't because he would always be crap with money and prioritise himself over the rest of the family).

Trying to plan things for me and the dc to look forward to this year and to remember why I wanted to split!

comingintomyown Sun 03-Mar-13 14:02:39

Its early days Ikea so be gentle on yourself

So my divorce came through ten days ago and I did have a subdued day and tearful evening running the old why couldnt he have xy and z so we didnt split but the next day I woke up feeling rejuvenated and have been fine since.

I think that was probably the last bit of upset I will have over xh now and I am sort of glad I felt like that although that sounds daft

A good friend in our circle is deeply unhappy in her marriage to her childhood sweetheart been together 25 years or so . Their relationship is quite dysfunctional with her being on the shitty end of the stick for most of it and her unhappiness shows itself in a lot of odd ways but she only talks about it when drunk.

If only I could bottle the essence of divorced me and show her that , however unlikely she thinks it, she would be soooooo much happier unmarried than married to him

orsomethinglikethat Sun 03-Mar-13 14:05:41

Good for you ikeameatballs, I'm glad this has helped you!

I'm having a hard time atm, h is being a complete shit. We are still living together and he seems to be in complete denial. He agreed to leave but since then he keeps moving the goalposts, he looked at a flat last week and said it was too small and he couldn't really afford the rent then he looked at a houseshare and said he couldn't live there as the housemates are too messy. I think he will pick fault with everything he looks at because he can, he doesn't want to believe its over and he thinks by dragging it out I will roll over and let him stay.

We've been mostly civil to each other so the dcs don't have to witness any bad atmosphere but when we spoke a few nights ago he said I'd given him the impression that I wanted to try again confused because I'd said hello to him when he got home from work. When I try to confront him he completely stonewalls me. I have no money of my own and nowhere to go and he seems to be using this to his full advantage. His parents have said to him that I have pnd (untrue) and I think hes using this to make me think all our problems are my fault. I feel so trapped atm.

Sorry for the garbled message, just needed to get that out!

comingintomyown Sun 03-Mar-13 15:18:24

If its any consolation xh spent a month sporadically saying he was going to give the keys back ie renege on the rental he had set up . I think he just faltered at each stage of the actual split up and it took him time to adjust to each bit.

If you keep the message simple ie you no longer want to be married to him then eventually he should realise he wont be wearing you down or changing your mind

In what way is he being a shit ?

Ikeameatballs Sun 03-Mar-13 15:31:04

P seemed to think that me being civil to him for the week that we lived together and just generally trting to get on meant that I wanted to try again. Sometimes a bit of me thinks I do, I can't imagine getting to an emotional place where I won't feel for him. I guess that 11 years and 2 dc does that!

orsomethinglikethat have you been to CAB or a solicitor? They should e able to give you advice about your rights. That might make you feel a bit more in control of the situation?

Toadspawn Sun 03-Mar-13 22:59:40


orsomethinglikethat Mon 04-Mar-13 09:43:39

Grr I tried to talk to him again last night, I asked him how much money he has saved for a flat and after avoiding the question for a while he admitted hes got nothing! I can't afford a solicitor but cab have a drop in tomorrow so fx theres something I can do.

dothraki Mon 04-Mar-13 13:16:31

orsomething - could he not go and stay with his parents ? As for men misunderstanding - well years after we split (and he was divorced from second wife) he had a significant birthday. So I got him a very cheap piece of shite small present. This was for my dc's benefit, so they didn't feel even worse. The fucking bastard idiot told them I was still in love with himshock. Good luck at CAB

Llareggub Mon 04-Mar-13 13:22:52

I love my new single life. I separated from my H over a year ago due to his alcoholism. I struggled on in the marital home for a while, then thought sod it and moved 150 miles back to my home town to complete FREEDOM. I have an enormous rented house with sea views at a fraction of the cost of our tiny house and me and my sons are thriving in our new lives. It's great. I've even had sex.

dothraki Mon 04-Mar-13 13:35:39

Yep to that Llareggub - ain't much sex in a bad marriage grin

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now