Our divorce was finally signed after a last minute frenzy to compromise. It’s funny how one small topic in a divorce agreement can wreak such havoc and cause so much chaos. A divorce agreement is the cornerstone of the rules going forward and whatever you agree with, be sure you can live with forevermore because going back to change it costs more in lawyer fees and is harder to do than you can imagine (from what I’ve heard).
It’s hard at the end of a divorce when there’s something you just can’t agree on and it can hold up a divorce for weeks as each side wants what they want without compromise. I will tell you that I was so tired by the end of the divorce process that I was just done and ready to fully give in to his demands because I was tired of the back and forth, the negativity and the supreme way in which he refused to back down or compromise. I felt myself breaking as the deadline approached. Hours ticked by as I struggled to not give in fully to let him get his way and to be done with the whole thing as I had done so many times during our marriage. I was sick to my stomach and sobbing. I couldn’t get a grip on the situation. I didn’t want to not compromise, but I did want to do what was right for me, for my future and for the future of my kids. I had to keep my dignity and stand up for myself even when I just wanted to fold in on myself and give in. Luckily, when I called up my divorce lawyer and sobbingly said, “I surrender. Just give him what he wants,” my divorce lawyer had already gotten a plan of compromise which allowed my STBX what he wanted and yet, gave me what I needed financially without fully backing down or giving in, thus saving my dignity in standing up for what we, as a new family unit needed. It was a lifesaver and finally we were both able to sign the agreement.
But it was a good lesson for me. I realized that I still held onto the pattern in our marriage which was my subordination and over-compromising in order to keep the peace. When I took a stand and filed for divorce, it was met with disbelief by him and a teensy bit of re-balancing of the relationship which was good for me and for my self-esteem which had been lacking. When I clung to that one last topic on the divorce agreement, his ruthless determination never wavered and I was just so darn tired that I was ready to just give in, but I am ever grateful that my lawyer found a way for us to compromise so that I got what I needed without giving in completely in order to keep peace and continue the re-balancing of the relationship.
I have heard from many other women and after reading a bunch of articles, that we women seem to just cave in at the end because we are simply so emotionally exhausted etc, that we just surrender for the sake of peace and getting the divorce completed. Divorce is draining and unless you’re someone who thrives on agitation. The process can seem endlessly tortuous if both sides don’t want to compromise and strike a deal. The longer it drags on, the harder it can be. At least that’s what it was for me. It’s not that I’m a wimp by any means or that I wouldn’t stand up for what my kids and I needed. However after the endless emotional roller coaster ride we’ve been riding for over a year, which strangled my ability to think straight, I was finished.
If you are in this situation, make sure you take good care of yourself. Sleep when you can, keep eating and allow yourself to think about the big picture and the future so that you keep yourself protected.