“My marriage is quite the opposite of my parents’ marriage. My husband treats me with respect, trust, and consideration – and loves me for me. We have a bond just like I wanted for myself.”
– Catherine, age 39
As a daughter of divorce, the single most important task ahead is restoring your faith in love. You might desperately want love and life-long commitment, but fear losing it. It’s only natural to dread reencountering the same fate as your parents. As an adult, you may have come to the sudden realization that the relationship patterns you experience in your life mirror those of your parents. In the realm of romantic relationships, there is a lot to learn. The problem is that when parents divorce, they don’t provide their children with healthy relationship templates to follow. But with courage and persistence, you can reject the models you were raised with and create a happy intimate relationship that endures the test of time.
Studies show that as a daughter of divorce, it’s likely that you have a strong desire to succeed in your romantic relationships, even though the odds are stacked against you. As we discussed earlier, there is growing consensus among researchers that marriages in which either the husband or the wife hails from a divorced family are almost twice as likely to fail as compared to marriages in which neither spouse experienced parental divorce. Further, marriages between two people from divorced families are over three times as likely to fail compared to those containing no children of divorce. All these statistics don’t mean you’re doomed to fail, but developing a mindset that makes self-awareness, insight, and learning interpersonal skills a priority is a crucial step to achieving lasting intimate relationships.
I’d love to read your comments on this page. Be sure to order our new book “Daughters of Divorce: Overcome The Legacy of Your Parents’ Breakup and Enjoy a Happy, Long-Lasting Relationship.”