Self-help | Family | Parenting

7 Lessons About Love That Only Divorced Couples Can Understand

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It's a sad but true fact of life that around 1 in 4 couples that say "I do" today will end up divorcing. While lots of these marriages are torn apart by things outside of the average person's control (money problems, for instance) more often than a simple failure to communicate or see eye-to-eye with your partner winds up ending the relationship.

It can be a painful experience, but also a freeing one. As anyone who's lived through a divorce will tell you, it's a lot more complicated than it seems from the outside looking in.

1. After a split you'll feel sad AND happy (and everything in between)

When you're living in an unsustainable relationship it can feel so refreshing to finally end it, but your emotions are a little more complicated than that. In fact, sometimes both partners realize that a separation is exactly what they need.

People who haven't lived through the experience will question how you can feel both happy and sad about the outcome, but it's only natural to miss what you once had - even as you're grateful for the chance to move on.

A couple pose for a "divorce selfie."TNI Press

2. Your relationship doesn't end after you break up

When Billy Flynn Gadbois shared a story about celebrating his ex-wife's birthday on Facebook, people had confused and surprised reactions. His post, which quickly went viral, explained the situation perfectly: he still has to set a good example for his kids, whether or not he's married to their mother.

Even if you and your ex-partner don't have children together, you'll stay bonded in lots of unexpected ways after the split. Divorce isn't an "off switch" for your relationship, it's just the start of a new chapter.

3. Strong couples can imagine their future together

One of the warning signs many people recognize after their divorce is they could never imagine their relationship lasting into the future. If you and your partner seem to constantly be preoccupied with arguments about the present, it could be a hint that you're not meant to be together.

4. Judge not lest ye be judged

When you're in a happy relationship it can be so easy to look at a couple that have split up and imagine they must have done something wrong, or that you would never find yourself in the same situation.

Even today, divorced people are judged harshly by society, and lots of them report that it's harder to find a new partner after the split. The truth is it can happen to anyone, so don't go making judgments unless you've walked in someone else's shoes.

Even celebrity couples split up, so it can definitely happen to anyone.E!

Click to the next page for the one thing all divorced couples want you to know!

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