Jesse Ruins Relationships: How my marriage failed

Those who follow my stories know that I’m the definition of a non-traditional student: I’ve been in school for ten years, I have two kids and I turn 30 this year. You’ve also probably realized by now that I enjoy writing things to be humorous. Today I decided to switch that up a bit, and touch down on a more serious note.

Last month my wife and I finally initiated the divorce process by moving out and separating. I’ve officially become weekend dad, and it crushes me to not be there to read my girls their bedtime stories. This all happened because throughout our relationship, my wife and I had been struggling badly with our marriage, with our personal lives, with finances, you name it. We lost sight as to who we were as individuals, how to love, and how to respect and appreciate the other. Essentially, we took the other for granted. You see, this all happened because we got married way too fast.

In many places, especially Utah, there is a stigma to get married fast and have kids, lots of kids, shortly after, and that if you’re not doing so by 25, you’re damaged goods or screwed. We fell victim to that, but in a different way.

At the end of November, I’d have met my wife four years ago at a concert. I sneaked my way up to the front to hit on her after the show and took a picture for her. I had her wrapped around my finger from day one! We went on our first date about two weeks later, but, from there we spent every waking moment (that we weren’t at school or work) together.

Come mid-January, we found out that she was pregnant, and in September, my entire life changed with the birth of my first baby girl. We didn’t get married till the following August, but our entire relationship was filled with a pregnancy and a child. We never got to date each other; we always dated as a family.

I hear students talking about dating and it blows me away. Students are too focused on meeting someone, getting married so fast, and stressing about whether “they likes me or not.” My advice: go on many dates. Don’t put time into one person, especially if he or she isn’t going to put it back. These are the best days of your lives, and now’s the time to live it up. Marriage is tricky, but it will happen when it’s supposed to. Don’t force it.

Take it from me, if you don’t take the time to get to know each other, or yourself, than the odds are ever in your favor that it won’t last, especially when you add kids into the picture. Don’t make the same mistake I did. Every day hurts worse than the last.

Lastly, when I first started dating, cell phones were barely being introduced, so it was a duty to be prompt, to go to the door rather than text “I’m outside,” to take initiative and actually ask someone out, face-to-face, not over the phone or from swiping right. We put in more effort.

By the time I had met my wife, I had dates that wouldn’t even answer my calls, just texts. This is disgusting. We are all worth more than a “Netflix-n-chill.” GO OUT. Plan a date and have fun. Adventures define people.

Stay safe Wolverines.

1 thought on “Jesse Ruins Relationships: How my marriage failed

  1. I agree with the spirit of what you write–it’s always a worthwhile investment to develop a strong relationship and respect for the person you want to marry before you rush into ‘family life’. The problem I have with your narrative is that you tie your poor relationship experience back to the LDS culture which advocates marriage & family earlier rather than later in life. Your situation isn’t a sample case for highlighting the pitfalls of marrying young and getting a jump on kids and family. You and your girlfriend got pregnant before you got married, I get the impression that family was forced upon you because of some poor decisions. You skipped some fundamental relationship steps in the marriage and family pattern and that causes problems–big problems.
    I’m sorry to hear about your struggles, it’s always heart wrenching when a family doesn’t make it. I wish you and yours the very best.

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