Divorce... Never Easy!

July 11, 2008
By Erica McDonnell, Strathroy, ZZ

The Break-Up.
Picture this, you have a mother and a father who are madly in love (or so you thought), you live in a huge house, a kind and loving family, fun and exciting vacations, and just about anything you could have ever asked for.
The - Poof ! It all goes up in flames, only a memory now. Suddenly your parents are divorced, your dad has moved out into an apartment, you mom has changed her last name, and your family is falling apart right in front of you and you would do anything to turn back the time. What do you do with all the anger and hurt? How do you keep your life from spinning out of control?

The Downward Spiral.
I use to be a straight A and B student. I was proud of myself, and I always got along with my parents, teachers, and other teenagers. It’s not like my life was perfect.
And then my parents split up. Ill never forget the night my mom and dad sat my brother, sister, and I down, and explained to us how things were going to change. The first thing my dad said was “It’s not your fault.” “What?” I thought. What’s not my fault?
“Your father and I have decided to separate for a while,” she went on. My mouth dropped and I could feel the tears dropping from my cheeks. I was stunned and I didn’t know what to think of the situation. I knew my mom and dad haven’t been getting along, and my dad had been a little bit moody around us, but I didn’t think much about it. I just thought they would work it out. But a Divorce? How could they? I thought they loved each other.
Right after the Family Meeting everything began to change. My dad moved out of my parent’s bedroom and onto the couch downstairs. We stopped doing things as a family. It was always either my Mom and I, or my Dad and I.
I would always try to figure out a way to get them back together. I kept thinking, if I could only somehow do or say the right thing, we would be a real family again.Sometimes I also thought they divorced because of something I did like; got a bad grade on a test, or I didn’t clean my room when they told me to.
Unfortunately it didn’t happen. Instead, things got worse rather than better. My dad moved out into an apartment, and my mom had to get a second job to afford my brother, sister, and I. I had to quit dance lessons, and my brother had to quit hockey because my mom couldn’t afford it. I hated hearing that there was no money for the things I’d always take for granted like; vacations, clothes, and sports.
My anger grew. My grades slid to C’s, and I started getting anxious, depressed, and more frequented migraines. I was ruder to my brother and sister, even people whom I knew really cared about me. Did I feel bad about it? Definitely. I didn’t want to be sad and angry anymore, but I was in so much pain, and I was confused inside.
So did my eating. The angrier I got, the more I ate. I ate to numb the pain that was burning a hole into my heart, even if it was only for a brief moment. Instead of being a little heavy, I became seriously overweight. Girls at my elementary school began to bully me, and girls who I thought were my friends abandoned me. I would come home wanting to die and just cry myself to sleep, and think “why would God do this to me?” What have I done deserving this?

A Surprising Realization.
Then, one day something strange happened. I would look forward to that day for a long time. My parents had been separated for a long time by then, and I was still angry and hurt inside, but my mind got very clear. I realized maybe my parents separation wasn’t a bad thing, maybe my parents are happier apart.

You would think that realization would have made me feel worse than ever, and in a way it did. But in another way it set me free, I knew I couldn’t change their lives, I could only change mine. I would be able to accept this new life and find a way to begin again.

Finding an Answer.
For me, talking to my mom and a psychiatrist about how I was feeling, and about what was going on at school would make me feel better about myself and my life, too. I still have to live with the changes the separation brought to my life, and I still don’t like many of them. To be honest I still feel angry and upset at times. The Holidays and weekends are especially tough for me. At a time when families are suppose to be so close, I end up torn in two directions.
I have gotten more comfortable with the situation over a period of time. I can even see some positive things that came out of the separation. For one thing, I don’t have to listen to my parents fight that often anymore! But mostly how I have grown from this. I have found strength inside myself I didn’t know I had, and I know that I can change my life when I need to.
I’ve learned I can’t let my anger and disappointments overcome me. I can’t change the fact that my parents are divorce, but I can change how I deal with it and how I move on. And that’s made all the difference in the world.

The author's comments:
I wrote this article 'Divorce... Never Easy!' for my English project. Our assignment was to create a magazine any topic we chose, so I chose to do it about events that are effecting teenagers right now. I hope when people are reading this they get inspired because this happening every where.

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This article has 7 comments.

on Oct. 8 2008 at 12:47 pm
Wow. Good job girl.

ha said...
on Sep. 30 2008 at 10:17 am
I very like it

alex94 said...
on Sep. 30 2008 at 12:34 am
You sound like a really tough girl Erica. My parents divorced when I was very little, and I think I'm lucky i didn't have to go with what you went through. Just remember to keep your head high and be proud of who you are! =))

AUNT RUTH said...
on Sep. 5 2008 at 1:18 pm
Great article Erica. You will truly help other children in this situation!!

on Aug. 31 2008 at 12:19 pm
Wonderful article Erica. Keep up your writing you have a real talent.

magic 123 said...
on Aug. 21 2008 at 10:20 pm
wow Erica..........this really got to me. I am so sorry for what you had to go through. You wrote an amazing story.Be proud of yourself! You are an amazing person.

Babyeyes6 said...
on Aug. 16 2008 at 9:25 pm
Great job Erica!!

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