Jennifer had been in a civil partnership for over six years at the time the relationship came to an end. She and her partner did not have children and Jennifer had worked throughout the relationship.
What I wish I had known:
That it would eventually be over and be irrelevant to the rest of my life. It’s remarkable how enormous it felt back then and how inconsequential it is now.
Emotional distress narrow one’s focus, which has the effect of magnifying everything beyond proportion, which in turn increases the distress. While, in truth, it usually isn’t as big and dramatic as we are convinced it is.
The low point:
That I might lose the house I’d bought and paid for – and had worked towards since I was twenty. Actually that was low, frightening and also partially liberating – the latter with the possibility that I might have to sell my home and that would likely force me into a rethink of my future, which is never necessarily a bad thing.
The certainty that I did the right thing:
I was annoyed that she got anything. I acquiesced to get it over with. In the greater scheme of things, this matters less and less each day.
What I would do differently:
If you’d asked me at the conclusion of the divorce I would have said that I wouldn’t have agreed to pay her the amount she wanted. Now, I wouldn’t change that, it’s past.