Never Settle for Misery in Your Relationships: You Deserve More!

This is the story of my relationships. How I found true love after years of broken relationships and misery. 

Growing up, I always thought that marriage was one of the oddest ordeals. My parents stuck together for the sake of children while they were a really poor fit for each other. Many of family members and neighbors were married. However, most of them seemed pretty miserable to me.

The word “divorce” was like a bad karma in our “old-school” society. People would stick together in misery till death tore them apart.

I thought that I was a freak for not understanding this whole marriage ordeal. As a result, it created a lot of confusing impressions and beliefs in my mind.

Luckily, by the time I moved to NY, my parents were done torturing each other and me in the process. My dad was living in Brooklyn, while my mom was a million miles away. I ended up living my dad for a bit.

A few years went by, and I established myself in my new environment. Deep inside, I still did not believe in happy marriage. Provided that, I felt that there was something fundamentally wrong with me.

Then again, I allowed people to influence me. Not to mentation, my new role models: Hollywood’s “happily ever after” romantic comedies!

Don’t Get Pressured Into Relationships.

So, by the time I turned 23, I was ready to get married. All I needed was to find someone who would love me and take care of me. After dating quite a few men, I believed that I was not capable of loving anyone. However, I was determined to get married so I can fit in and stop being a freak!

I found my “perfect” match. We dated for about four beautiful months. It was almost like a Hollywood movie: the flowers, the gifts, and the romance. Finally, with some encouragement from me, my prince proposed. We went to the city hall and got married. The marriage procedure felt like signing a bail for someone in the NYC 17th precinct – amusingly ridiculous.

We rented a small one bedroom apartment, and my suffering began. I am a not a big person, but I need lots of space. Granted, I always had space with my own bathroom and bedroom. Sharing a bed with another person really put a toll on me.

My ex-husband was an amazing and a very kind person. It made things even worse. Everyone told me that this how marriage supposed to be.  You need to sacrifice a bit. Your husband is an angel, and you should be grateful.

Nonetheless, I tried desperately to figure out what was wrong with me. I was unhappy in a “happy” marriage.  Everything that looked perfect outside felt bad inside. I was struggling to make things work.

In the second year, my marriage became a bad habit. My life was a mess. I started drinking, bingeing and going out. I had no strength to end the relationship.

Don’t Settle for Misery:

True Love is Waiting!

At the same time, I was ready to transform my life. But, I didn’t have the tools or support. Given that, I did horrible things as I  was swimming in my tears and lies. I even went to see a shrink, who instantly wanted me to start taking useless pills. I tried to improve my health and spirits by quitting smoking, eating well and exercising instead. I even took a few yoga classes.

Finally, my ex-husband got sick of me, and we started talking about splitting up. Finally, after a quick notary public stamp for $500, our marriage was over. I was very lucky! My ex-husband helped me move and was very kind and understanding.

At least, I was free again! For the first time in my life, I got my own apartment. I still did not believe in meeting the right partner. So, newly single, I went on a dating marathon. As you can imagine, I went little nuts!

I was flying high, drinking, partying, dating and free. But, I still was not happy.

Know Yourself First.

Changing my habits was not an accidental process. It became a daily work to create a healthier and happier me.

I gave up on the idea of finding the true love.  Instead, I’ve decided to clean my act.

I had my freedom, but I was still deep in the mud.

Firstly, I started by cleaning up my apartment and my office. I bought a ton of self-help books. My physical therapist recommended “The Power of Now, ” and another friend landed me the “Feng Shui” books for cleaning.

Secondly, I started taking more yoga classes and reading mind-opening books. Somewhere along the lines, I realized, there was no right or wrong. I don’t have to subscribe to anything I don’t agree with because the society, family, friends or TV said so. I stopped drinking and finally (after five unsuccessful attempts) quit smoking.

Lastly, I ceased to looking for a partner to solve my problems and make me happy. There was no pressure. I was OK to be single.

My life was improving. I went hiking for the first time in my life at the age of 24. I was finally feeling alive!

New Healthy Relationship.

Photo: Las Vegas Halloween 2016

Suddenly, I met my old friend, Ron. We went out for lunch. I told him that I was not married anymore, but not rushing into a new relationship. Trust me; it was difficult. He was utterly handsome, smart and simply charming. He was just my type. We were both so scared of hurting ourselves. But, we decided to take a risk! We both shared the same outlook on spirituality and existence. There was a deep connection between us from the start. It was (and still is) magic!

Nearly 15 years passed since we had lunch at the corner New York cafe. We are still together. Ron and I moved to Colorado, adopted a puppy and finally got married in 2014.  I really love and like my husband.

In fact, I would not be where I am today if he was not by my side. Ron motivates me to pursue my dreams. He is my best friend and my partner.

Naturally, we had some ups and downs over the course of our lives. We were able to work through the issues which made our relationship stronger. This experience made me realize that:

The only way to have a fulfilling relationship with others is that I need the ability to know and have the internal relationship with myself. There is no such thing as “norm” – you just have to find the right kind of crazy.

I am glad that I didn’t settle for less. And neither should you.

Thanks for reading and please share your story!

6 comments

  1. I’m currently separated from my husband and we’ll be getting a divorce this year. We’ve been married for 7 years, and while the first few ones were good ones, things slowly started to go sour in year 5. I finally made the decision last year that I deserve to be happy and want out of this relationship. We will remain friends, but both agree that we no longer work out as lifetime partners.

  2. Thanks for sharing your story Anna! For me the words “until death do us part” can also mean the death of a relationship and not necessarily actual well you know! If you are unhappy and feel like you need to find yourself or the relationship is just not “alive” anymore after EVERY possibility of trying to salvage it, then it is time to move on! 22 year marriage for me had to end and I found someone who is perfect for me at this time of my life, I have written about this subject a few months back as well! We definitely share some commonality!

  3. Beautiful. I enjoy your writing. I have experienced the things you’ve shared above. I am in a marriage at present. This marriage has lasted 9 years. But I’m not happily married. We both agree it isn’t a happy marriage, however, if I did not bring the subject up, it wouldn’t be brought up. I am the one who speaks up. And that in itself, is part of why this marriage is failing. When a partner depends on you to complete them and be their everything, it can’t work. And as you said Anna, you have to be okay being with you, (yourself), before you can begin to be with another person. I’m not as young as you but I know even now, I must try to find my life. The life I have here is not my life, if that makes any sort of sense. To be fair, there has been heartache by family that has effected my mind. I am not as clear as I know I can be. But I do know, I am not happily married. My husband is not a bad man, at all. He has some serious problems but he has always been willing to “stick it out”. Well, my parents “stuck it out” until i was about twelve years old. While the rest of my siblings were much older, I got stuck with the “sticking it out”. How did that work for them or me? Not very well. The best thing would of been to either get some serious help (counseling for my parents, or for them to split up). My parents loved each other, but they competed with each others egos. My mother had no self esteem for many years with my dad and then she found her voice. That caused a lot of fights. But their real relationship, what made it good and bad, I can’t say. Like any couple, only the two of them know what went wrong. Obviously I heard many of the fights and have ideas from what I heard, but only the couple knows. You bring your parents into your marriage-relationship. At least the first ones. How can you not. You mirror what you’ve learned. Not consciously of course, but you do. It’s only after one, process’s pain, hurt, disappointment etc. that they can begin to have a more mature relationship, the next round. That’s how I see it. To find a “friend first” is absolutely magical and to me, would be the root of a blossoming partnership!

    • Thank you for your comments! It sounds like you know exactly what you need to do and where you stand in your marriage and your life. To me, this is the hardest part.

      When I was married, I thought that there is something wrong with me. And my ex-husband was an excellent person. But being a good man is not enough to make a marriage work, right?
      Luckily, it took me only two years to figure it out.

      You deserve to be happy regardless of how old you are! Life is one fleeting breath.

      I can totally relate to “parents sticking out.” But the truth is: they typically only harm children. At least in my case. My folks might’ve been happy at some point. But, all I remember is endless fights. It was not a happy household.
      Somehow I was able to overcome lots of hardships in my life. Of course, with a fair share of it is self-inflicted.

      So, I really hope you will get on your feet!

      Anna.

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