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Parents divorce - May 8th 2011, 05:15 PM

Sorry this is so long, but it helps even to type this all out. I feel like I can't talk to my friends about this anymore because I should be over it by now.

I'm an 18 year old girl and off to uni in September. Just over a year ago, my mum announced she no longer loved my dad, although she didn't say they were splitting. I was really confused at first but didn't believe that they would split. I guess I was just in denial and thought magically she would suddenly love him again. I mean, we were such a good family. So many people used to say how perfect my parents were together. In fact, someone actually once said 'The world would have to end before you two would split'.

But then it came out that my mum was in love with another man. This man was someone from her younger years when she was 19. They'd been together on and off and had a 'nasty split' as she put it. She never saw him again and then married to my dad a couple of years later. Her and my dad were together for over 20 years and then she bumped into this 'former love' on a night out with friends. She said as soon as she saw him, she instantly 'fell in love' again and almost immediately stopped loving my dad. This I still find hard to believe even now. It sounds like something a 12 year old would say.

So, around March time last year, they separated. My dad was absolutely devastated. He was suicidal and cried almost all day everyday. I would come home from school everyday to my dad crawled up in a ball in the same chair and I would cuddle him everyday for usually an hour. It killed me seeing my dad like that. At this time, I was upset, but almost came numb to it. I had to be strong for my dad. I guess I just kind of glided through each day, not really feeling anything. I guess it hadn't really sunk in. My mum moved out immediately to her mum's.

But a couple of weeks later, the emotions started to kick in. I was filled with so many emotions, I didn't know how to control myself. I resented my mum with a deep passion, so much so I threatened to kill her and smacked her round the face so she got a nosebleed when she came to take me for a walk. I would obviously never kill anyone, but I was so angry the threats just came out without thought. I cried all the time, I broke a ridiculous amount of things in my room and I didn't look after myself at all. I took comfort in a new group of friends and drinking and smoking all the time, which I look back and realise now was not helping at all. I didn't think about my behaviour at all at the time.

For ages this went on and I became more and more irrational to the smallest things. I would walk out of classes crying and became aggressive to teachers. I fell out with the whole friendship group due to my sadness and realised they weren't true friends at all. I became obsessive with one of the guys in that group who I thought really liked me but he admitted he'd started seeing someone else. Normally, that kind of thing wouldn't affect me much, but it felt like someone had died. I think even if I dropped a slice of toast on the floor by accident at that time, I would've cried for half an hour. Everything seemed like the end of the world.

My mum moved in and out over 5 times over the next few months, because my parents kept trying again and failing. My mum was just too obsessed with this man. This man was abused by his father when he was younger and now has emotional and commitment problems, so messed my mum about in the head. I remember one day sitting in the lounge with my mum standing in the middle of the room flying her arms about screaming and hitting and scratching her body like she had gone completely mad, with my dad crawled up on the floor crying at her feet. This image sticks so clearly in my mind and still disturbs me to even think about.

Nearer the summer, things started to get better. I got a job, which is the thing that helped me the most. I never felt upset at work, because I was too busy and it felt good to be earning money. I realised my true friends who are still my friends to this day and not the fake group I became a part of before. At the start of summer, my parents announced they were trying AGAIN. I didn't really know how to feel about this at the time. Anyways, I booked a holiday with a friend and went away in August. Honestly, this was the happiest I've ever been in my life. It was what I needed and gave me a confidence boost. I came back from this holiday and went away with my parents straight after and finally thought most of the pain was all over, although there was a worry in the back of my mind just waiting for disaster to happen again. And surprise surprise, my parents split again straight after the holiday. But weirdly enough, i wasn't that bothered. By this point, I was just fed up of the splitting and wanted both of them to find someone else to be happy with.

The next few months up til december were great. I was choosing my uni options and was just generally happy with life. My dad met a new girlfriend and my mum started dating. The only problem was we were all still in the same house due to my nan not allowing my mum to stay at hers anymore. We had to stay together due to financial reasons.

But since the start of 2011, I have gradually become sadder and sadder. We are STILL living in the same house and STILL waiting to move. I grew used to this after a while, but now it's driving me crazy. It is not normal or healthy to live with separated parents. Even though they don't argue anymore and my dad seems to have moved on and is really happy with his girlfriend who I really like, I still hate living this way. I never see my family like aunties and nan's etc anymore. My whole family still hate my mum. I have just lost the whole family relationship that I used to hold so closely to me.

I don't know why, but after months of not caring about the separation anymore, I've started to resent my mum again. She just annoys me so much. She goes around with her 50 year old friends all calling each other the 'young girls' and partying it up every friday and saturday night. She is out ALL THE TIME. She seems to have no intentions of settling down and for goodness sake, she is nearly 50. She sits on facebook all the time when she actually is home and all she talks to me about is her nights out or how lovely the man she was with when she was 19 is. She still isn't over it, even though they haven't spoke since October 2010. I have completely lost the relationship I had with my mum, I used to look up to her but she is a completely different person. Selfish, weak and irritating. I barely see my dad now either, because he's always off with his girlfriend. It's always just me and my brother in the house and it doesn't even feel like a home.

I have so much stress with a levels and uni and my family that there have been times I've felt so scared by the way that I'm feeling that I've had to call a friend to pick me up because I couldn't be on my own. I have turned from a person who used to be able to be content on my own to somebody who can't be alone for more than an hour. I get lonely so easily, and when I get lonely, I get depressed and sometimes feel suicidal. (although I would never actually kill myself) I'm looking forward to uni, but I have nothing currently that makes me happy. I feel like I'm stuck in limbo.

Am I pathetic for being so upset about a divorce at my age? I feel like at 18 years old, I should be mature enough to be over this by now. But I have started to miss my old family so much lately that I can't even bring myself to touch my a level work. I turned into the strongest, most happiest person I've ever been in my life a few months back and now I am depressed and hopeless again. Is it because I never got help for these feelings properly at the time?

Please somebody just tell me I will get over this. I don't want to be upset about my family anymore, because I know things will never be the same again.
   
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Re: Parents divorce - May 11th 2011, 09:11 PM

Hey there! I'm sorry it took so long for you to receive a response.

You're not pathetic for being upset by this divorce. When you become older, you don't suddenly become this robot who can process emotions without breaking down. We're all human... and in fact, the older you become, the more likely you are to face difficult emotional situations. Experiencing pain over a divorce is not limited to children - obviously, your parents have also experienced a great deal of pain, to the point where your father was even contemplating suicide. So don't be afraid to reach out to people, both on TeenHelp and in real life. Many of your friends have already dealt with divorces, so they can understand what you are going through. They won't think you're pathetic, because they've been through it and they recognize that age doesn't make the experience any less emotional.

It does become easier to handle, because time helps heal wounds. The scars may never fade, but you'll reach a point where you aren't constantly dwelling on the pain. There will always be reminders, and new problems may arise over the course of your life (ex. parents dating/marrying new people, the possibility of step/half-siblings, relationship between the two parents changing), but you will be able to deal with those problems as they come, just as you are dealing with this problem now. Like I said before, don't be afraid to get help, whether it's for something that happened a year ago or something that happened today. My parents separated when I was 13, divorced when I was 15, and I'm still struggling with some recurring issues at 22 years old. You never completely remove yourself from the conflict, but you learn how to integrate it into your life and carry on.






   
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