June 20, 2023 | Maria Cruz

People Share When They Realized Their Divorced Spouse Deserved The Previous Breakup

A divorce doesn't need to be a label for someone. Our lives don’t always go the way we planned and sometimes we break up with the person we thought we’d spend forever with. The trick is to get back up on the horse! That said, these people share moments when they knew their partner’s former spouse broke up with them for a reason.

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#1 Discovering the Past

Back in the day, I actually dated a divorcee for quite some time. Unfortunately, things didn’t go very well for me. The biggest issue was that she never told me she was divorced, which really wouldn't have bothered me. But I ended up finding out about her past from one of the several people she was sleeping with.

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#2 It Wasn’t Me

When I woke up at 3:00 a.m. to go to the bathroom and she was in the living room texting some dude. It kind of went downhill from there. I asked her who she was texting and she said it was some guy she met while out with girlfriends. I then asked if something was going on and she swore that she wasn’t doing anything. But, she found him intriguing. Big flag there because that's how she described me when we first met.

I snooped her internet history on her computer over the next couple of days. She was looking him up on Facebook, had directions to his house, and had searched various "am I pregnant" terms. There's a lot more to it, but from there, it was lots of yelling, threatening, and ultimately lawyers and divorce. To this day, she swears she didn't do anything. But she's the type of person where everything bad that happens is not her fault.

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#3 Becoming Best Friends

A friend's parents got divorced when she was in high school. They'd been together nearly 20 years, but they argued constantly. After they got divorced, her dad bought the other half of the duplex they lived in and became best friends with her mom. They went out to dinner several nights a week, never fought over what to do with the kids, helped each other with bills. They just dated other people too. My friend said she wished they would have done that years ago.

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#4 Getting the Truth

I briefly dated a divorcee. A common friend told me he was still married and often used that as a sympathy card to get women. This guy is 26. He married young to a woman seven years older than him and instantly regretted it. He had been building up the story of the marital troubles for a while and recently started telling everyone at work he got a divorce.

I work with him and had no reason to doubt it. Unfortunately for him, I’m good friends with someone in his university circle who knows his wife very well. When I found out, I confronted him and he started claiming he was in love with me and hadn't had the courage to ask his wife for a divorce yet, but would do it soon. Pretty much the exact same line he had used on another girl a few weeks ago.

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#5 Bad Behavior

I’m a divorcee who dated a divorcee. He got super tipsy on his birthday and told me, “I see why your husband left you.” This was right after I’d given him a $250 watch he’d been wanting. I eventually left because I realized he was a rebound that had lasted way too long. That and he was going to eventually hurt someone with his drinking and driving and I really didn’t want it to be me.

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#6 You’re Not a Failure

My widowed mom started dating a guy in her Sunday school class who was recently divorced. He was very quiet but nice. Her friends told her that he was never home, always hunting or at work, but that he was a nice man. They were warning her, but not scaring her off. He and mom got married. Still very quiet, but again nice. Turns out he was just depressed. His wife of 25 years had been sleeping with the same guy for at least half that time. He worked all the time, or went on hunting trips with friends, as he just didn't want to be at home.

My mom told him that it was too bad he couldn't retire so they could just enjoy their time together. (He was 50, mom was 53.) He said he could retire, and did so. They spent the next 20+ years having a great time, traveled extensively, just enjoying each other's company. They had a great marriage before he passed away. Missed by all of us. Sometimes, the divorce is 100% the fault of one party. Just because you’re divorced doesn't mean you were a failure.

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#7 Single Parents

When we had a kid. My husband has always been a workaholic. It didn't cause too many problems when it was just us but was a lot harder to manage once we became parents. It's easy to feel like you’re doing all the work and I resented my husband. My husband and his ex-wife had two kids close in age. She was essentially a single parent to them throughout the day. He did cut back his hours when our relationship started to suffer and even that was a lot. I understood why the divorce happened. I considered it at points during the relationship.

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#8 I Can See Why

I’m married to a divorcee. I realized with my very first interaction with his ex-wife why they got divorced. She is a controlling, delusionally self-important fool (who ended up cheating and then divorcing). I'm surprised he wasn't the one to file for divorce, but I had my share of bad relationships in the past too. My husband is lovely.

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#9 Subtle Characteristics

I didn’t actually marry the divorcee, but came close. Fortunately, I realized beforehand that she was completely selfish. Everything was always about what she wanted and she found subtle ways to de-value anything I wanted or that was good for me. She also hid a bad temper from me (which came out finally toward the end). After the breakup, she tried spreading lies about me to all our mutual friends to make herself look better. Fortunately, most of them realized what she was doing. I definitely dodged a bullet.

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#10 My Savior Complex

My ex-boyfriend was married previously and his wife took her life. When I met him, I assumed his late wife must have had a lot of problems with depression or something and didn't think he had any impact on her decision at all. It took me a year and eight months to leave him. He was emotionally and verbally toxic. He became angry easily. He would make hurtful "jokes" and then say I was being too sensitive and that he's just a blunt person.

Now, I know a person's self-harm can not be entirely due to someone else because it is ultimately that person's decision. But in that year and eight months, I realized it's feasible she ended her life because of his emotional issues impacting their relationship. I realize now that I began dating him with the idea I could save him. Some introspection and reading helped me get over my savior complex. Save yourself.

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#11 Lingering Feelings

I dated a divorcee for a hot sec. She was a really wonderful lady, but obviously had some lingering feelings about how things went with her ex. The first time this came up was one night when we were at a bar. I ended up in a fairly intense, fun conversation about music with the (male) bartender. She got weirdly upset. She said things like, “Well maybe you just want to go home with him' and 'It's obvious you guys are into it.” A bit later, when she found out my brother is gay, she got weirdly passive-aggressive and started saying enough offensive things. I eventually broke up with her. Turns out, her ex-husband left her for a man.

0da4f6e76cd81ce9e2a3afc7db4e095f04b36085Snappy Goat

#12 Accepting Each Other’s Flaws

My wife and I are both divorced. We were pretty acutely aware of each other's flaws beforehand. She actually lived with me and my ex for a while when I was still with the ex. She hadn't been divorced that long at the time. We just rest safely in the knowledge that our flaws fit each other better than they did with our exes.

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#13 Grateful For One Another

I used to work with this in-house mechanic who was kind of a weird, quirky guy. He was married for 14 years, got divorced, met another divorced woman and has been in love ever since. He said they were both treated terribly in their former marriages and are grateful to have one another. I remember him telling me when he was with his ex, he drank a lot. He'd leave work on his lunches and down a few bottles. One day, he was walking to the liquor store when he realized instead of buying drinks he could be spending his money on a piece. He stopped drinking ever since.

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#14 Strong Marriage

Absolutely never. I married a “three-time loser” when she was 32 years old and I was 27. We dated for six months and the marriage was going strong when she passed away 38 years later. Problems? Sure – we had a lot. But we knew enough about each other before marriage to make it work through those problems.

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#15 Must be Divorced

I dated three divorced girls. The first one was too young to marry, so it was a natural progression for her to get divorced. The second one was divorced because the guy slept with someone. I didn't date her long enough to come up with a reason to say, "So that's why..." The third one, though. Oh my God. She was possessive, obsessed, jealous, manipulative, etc. She was also so smart that most of the time, she made it seem it was normal.

Thank God I opened my eyes and saw her for what she really was. I totally understood why her marriage and post-date life was a failure. The funny thing is that now I'm dating a newly divorced woman, but this one got divorced because she’s a very successful and hardworking woman. That made her former husband be a bit jealous and competitive. What's more, the fact that she didn't want to have kids made it all the worse. But with me, it's going perfectly fine.

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#16 My Kind of Crazy

I just proposed to mine two days ago after five years together. I cannot find the reason why any sane man wouldn't have shot everyone else to stay with her. I'll report back after the next five years. She's crazy but she's my kind of crazy. Note to you youngins... they are all crazy. Find the one that works for you.

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#17 It’s Getting Worse

I'm dating a divorcee. Most of the time he's amazing but the jealousy and clinging are getting out hand. Any time I do anything without him, I must have been sleeping with some other dude. If I'm reading Reddit or playing on my phone, I must be texting some other dude. He shows up when I'm out on a girl’s night, even if he hates the restaurant. I actually just skipped my work Christmas party because we couldn't afford for both of us to go. I also didn't want to deal with the argument if I went without him. It's getting worse and I don't know what to do about it.

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#18 Along for the Ride

A friend married a girl who was divorced. She was cute and well off. So what's the catch, right? Why would anyone leave her? She's very self-dependant. She doesn't need anyone or any help. She's set in her ways. The color she painted her house, her design style, etc. She's earned her money and wants to spend it her way. My friend is super laid back, go with the flow, doesn't care, etc. They’re great. She calls the shots, and he's along for the ride.

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#19 An Interesting Thought

Our pastor told us that maybe a reason second marriages fail is that the person may easily point the finger at the ex-spouse for the failure of the first marriage without wanting to take any of the blame or being willing to change. So they take all their personal issues into the second marriage and don't want to change. That can cause the same problems in the second marriage. It’s an interesting thought.

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#20 My Eyes Are Open

My ex was in the process of a divorce when we met. His wife was crazy and the reason for everything wrong in his life. He had kids and I would go to sporting events for them when his ex-wife would be there the vast majority of the time too. We started to get along and he hated that. I didn't get it. Wouldn't it be easier for the kids if she and I had a good relationship? Oh no, we would compare notes on him and it would ruin our relationship! (We quite literally never talked about him). My eyes started to open.

I was using his computer once and his Google Calendar opened. There was an event on Valentine’s Day the next week, which he told me we weren’t doing anything for due to money. (He blamed no money on the ex as well.) I opened it and the event was "Day ExGirlfriend Broke My Heart.” This ex of his was prior to his 20-year relationship with his now ex-wife. I figured out that he never let anything go.

A couple of months later, our relationship was declining on its own. We got in a fight and he told me I was starting to sound like his ex-wife. I responded, "If we’re saying the same exact things, and are such different people, don’t you think the issue is you?!" I realized at that exact moment that he was a narcissistic tool who was never going to change or grow up. I moved out a week later.

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#21 Monster-in-Law

My realization was less about my spouse and more about my mother-in-law. My MIL behaved sweetly before we were married, but didn't bother keeping up the facade after. Her tactics are so intrusive that I've realized that my spouse's previous marriage probably never had a chance. They married relatively young and I couldn't imagine anyone that young dealing with a seasoned aggressor. Her interjections have been a huge stressor. Luckily, my spouse makes a conscious decision to support me instead of her (which has created a new set of problems). If my spouse and I weren't as compatible as we are, I'm not sure our relationship would have survived.

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#22 Locked in the Bathroom

I recently dated a girl that had just come off a marriage with a man. She wanted to try women and we went out a couple of times and started dating. When we had relations, she was very aggressive. But one time she straight up started hitting me over and over again. I told her to stop and she kept on hitting harder and harder. I eventually broke her off and locked myself in the bathroom, calling the cops and waiting until they arrived. Apparently, she had a record and her husband divorced her for hitting him when he would come home from work. She would also always try to beat him up in his sleep. It was pretty wacky stuff.

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#23 On Her Third Husband

When I was certain she was having an affair. She then claimed to be asexual and moved across the country to be with the other man. Then, she moved back to be with another man I introduced her to after the other guy left her. She did this all while I was paying both of our bills. We were legally separated and just waiting for the divorce to be approved, but in the military's eyes, I was still responsible for her. I started to realize there was a reason she was 22 (I was 25) and was on her third husband.

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#24 I Love Lucy

When I found out she was the real-life version Lucile Ball. She was a sweetheart and I’ll always love her but she was disastrous. It was also never on purpose. She was just naturally oblivious to the world and her surroundings. She literally flooded my house the fourth or fifth day she was there and that was just the start.

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#25 Yeah Right, Lady

My ex-wife slept with someone else. The first few times, I was devastated but remained in the marriage for our kids. I’m not sure when I just decided it was enough. This was years ago, and I’m so much better off, though my kids are forever marred by the experience. Cut to about six years after we separated. She’s still with the last guy she slept with. She actually had the gall to text me about how upset she was because he’d slept around on her several times and she just couldn’t get over it. My only response was, “I can totally relate, bet it sucks.” This was after years of her convincing me that, “it’s only relations, just physical. No big deal.” Yeah right.

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#26 Everyone Has Flaws

It’s my experience that everyone has a flaw worthy of divorce. This has a lot to do with the degree to which I wish to put up with that flaw. As I aged, my understanding of how to deal with many common flaws in people, as well as bettering understanding myself, led to a greater tolerance of my mates and their flaws. For some people, that takes three marriages. For others, it’s innate.

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#27 Biggest Regret

I dated a divorcee from 20-25. She was 27 when we met and I regret not marrying her. She had a kid and I wasn't prepared to start that life at that time. I wish I had been more mature and stepped up. She was actually the perfect woman. She cooked decently, whereas I cannot, she was good with money, had her own friends, and we were sexually compatible.

Even after dating for five years, she never exhibited any toxic traits when in any kind of argument. If anything, her geography just didn't work out because I got a job in NY and she was on the west coast. Now 12 years later I wish I had stayed with her on the west coast, instead of moving away and breaking up. She is now remarried. It seems like her new guy is a good dude.

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#28 I’ve Had Enough

I didn’t marry, but dated a divorcee. It was 100% his fault in my eyes, until she got too tipsy to take care of her own infant and I had to get him back to sleep. Then, the trip to rehab where she was told she drank to self-medicate her anxiety. To her, that meant she didn’t have a problem, so she got tipsy the night she left rehab. That was when I decided I’d had enough.

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#29 Life’s Too Short

My second wife was divorced, as was I. We had a wonderful life together for 16 years. She was the love of my life and she said the same of me for her. We both were miserable and hurt in our first marriages. We were ridiculously happy for 16 years. She passed away six years ago. Life is too short not to be happy.

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#30 Pants on Fire

I married my high school sweetheart. She was divorcing her husband because he "wanted an open marriage," which she absolutely didn't want. Occasionally during my marriage, she would bring up how her ex would call her a liar and try to reinforce how honest and straightforward she is. After seven years of marriage and suspecting at times she was cheating, I finally found concrete proof.

She lied to me several times in order to take trips to see this guy. I talked to her ex-husband, found out she had done three ways with his brother, slept with her best friend's husband, and had several other relationships going on while she was married to him. He brought up the open marriage thing because he didn't care about her having relations with other people, he just didn't want her to lie to him anymore. Yeah, at the end of everything I wasn't mad about it either. It was definitely the lying. There wasn't anything she wasn't willing to cover up with a lie.

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#31 Walking on Eggshells

I didn’t marry one, nor did I properly date her. But we spent a lot of time together and hooked up a couple of times. She’s an amazing person but overly sensitive. I always felt like I needed to watch every word that I said so as not to insult her or make her feel bad. I actually wanted to try something with her but I realized that I didn’t want to spend my life next to someone I’ll always have to censor myself around.

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#32 It’s Going Well

I met my current wife when she was in the process of divorcing. We both were involved in a local organization and saw each other a lot. I knew she was married, so I didn’t ask her or anything, but she let out that she was moving into her own place. It got me thinking about a good way to ask her out. I figured if she was in the process of divorcing, it was cool. She finalized the paperwork while we were dating and I took her out to celebrate. We got married a couple of years later and I’d say it’s been going pretty well so far!

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#33 Trust Issues

I dated my ex-husband for three years before we married. I never once suspected he was a toxic man. We got married and within a year's time, I'd had my right top incisor (front tooth) knocked out because he got angry with me over dinner! I divorced him so fast your head would swim. I also stayed purposely single for the rest of my life. I thought I knew him and could never trust men fully again.

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#34 Better Than the Alternative

My ex-wife and I are still friends. We don’t live together like this, but I go over to her house to help with things periodically. She invited me over for Thanksgiving when her family was in town. We don’t “hang out” but things are good. She’s engaged and I’m dating someone. People think it’s weird, but it’s so much better than the alternative.

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#35 Wake-Up Call

My husband had an engagement that ended before we met. The reasons always seemed weird to me, something about her trying to get rid of their dog and getting into a huge fight with his mom when she made a snarky comment about the dog thing. Then, getting her mom and sister to call and harass his mom about the fight. A big, ridiculous argument ended with them deciding they weren’t going to work out. They’d been together for like four years.

Now I completely get it. Well, not the part with her mom and sister, but the rest of it. The dog was awful. It peed everywhere, was aggressive, and old enough that he was difficult to train since they hadn’t done anything about it when he was a puppy. The dog now lives with my mother-in-law because it’s not safe to have him in a home with babies. My mother-in-law is a nightmare, but my husband and his ex saw her multiple times a week whereas we see her once every couple of months.

At one point, about a year in, we had a big argument where I told him we were heading down the same path as them if he didn’t get his life together. I added that if you have the same problems with two long-term relationships in a row, you need to consider that you’re part of the problem. I also said that I was out if he didn’t set serious boundaries with his mom and get some training for the dog. Fortunately, it was a wake-up call because that was seven years ago and neither is an issue.

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#36 Seeing the Flags

My parents are divorced and both got remarried. My mom found it beneficial to attend a "divorce care" group at her church. She ended up going out with the guy who ran the group and seemed like a great dude. When I asked her about him, she told me he was divorced two separate times already. It was a pretty huge red flag to me, but apparently not to her.

Fast forward 12 years and he's been unbelievably emotionally toxic to her. There was also a point when my brother and I were teenagers where we literally weren't allowed to live with them anymore (because he felt threatened that he wasn't the man of the house). She says she's happy still, which is truly all I want for her. But it's pretty frustrating when a 13-year-old can see the red flags my 40-year-old mother couldn't.

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#37 Huge Red Flag

My dad was married seven times. My mom was his sixth. When my mom divorced him, he came to me a couple of months later and introduced me to the new woman in his life. He quietly asked me not to mention how many times he was married before. He told her he was only married three times before. As if that wasn't still a huge red flag.

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#38 Not All the Same

I did not marry her, but I dated a divorcee. No kids. Her ex had been toxic (she had had a broken nose), but she was awesome, smart, had a Costco membership, played volleyball, was learning piano, and had a great job. She was looking for marriage as soon as possible, otherwise we may have continued dating and who knows.

I dated another divorcee who was also amazing in her own way. (She also had a security clearance, so possibly amazing in ways I didn’t know). She played SC2 with me, indicating lots of patience. We ended up going in different directions, but had things gone differently, we might still be together. I would not necessarily paint divorcees as high-strung crazy adulterers.

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#39 Loving, Supportive Wife

I’m going through a divorce. I thought I had the perfect marriage and really did try to be a loving, fun and supportive wife. Then one day, he told me he was going behind my back for years with many women. He then left me for the latest girl he slept with. It scares me to get out in the dating world again because of the stigma of divorcees. He couldn’t tell me anything I did wrong yet I fear guys in the future will think I was the cause of this divorce. It’s still all new for me but it’s something I worry about.

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#40 Tipping Their Hand

She told me that her ex-husband thought she was the most selfish person he ever met. I was like, "What? No..." I couldn't see it at the time. Turned out, she was also the most selfish person I'd ever met too. We’ve been divorced for four years and I couldn't be happier. She also remains blameless through both failed marriages. I learned a few things from that experience. I learned what a narcissist is, and when someone tips their hand like the selfish comment, believe them.

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#41 Cut-and-Dry

I realized the reason when he point-blank told me why they divorced. He told me that his ex-wife was sleeping around on him while he was deployed. It was terrible to listen to. She was caught with another soldier on base when they tried to inform her that her husband was gravely injured. Pretty cut-and-dry to me.

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#42 All Too Common

I dated a divorcee. She seemed to quickly start dating a handsome, inspiring heart of gold young man not long after the divorce. He was a guy she was working with closely on her job. She denied sleeping with him, but I feel like her personality was one that would take any cheating to the grave. Saving face and reputation were extremely important to her.

I entered the scene maybe three months after said handsome man broke her heart and moved across the country. That was about two years after the divorce. Suffice it to say, although she was very good at going through the motions and appearing to care about me, she was still much hung up on this gentleman. I didn't realize it at the time. I was very much head over heels and not mature enough to have a sense of these types of situations. She's not evil per se, but kind of a rude move to enter the dating pool when you’re not yet emotionally available. Sadly, it’s all too common for people to do.

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#43 Simply Not the Case

In all seriousness, sometimes people just don't click and don't marry the right people. I haven't seen any noticeable trends between divorcees and people who have never been married. The assumption of this question is that something is "wrong" with divorcees, and that's simply just not the case. Don’t shoot them down.

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#44 We Don’t Talk About It

I'm dating a divorcee right now. She fought for the divorce for years but he would never agree to it because he didn't want the divorce. Finally, she saved up enough money on her own to hire a lawyer and go through with the divorce without needing his permission. She's pretty great and we don't talk much about her ex. The only thing she's ever told me about him was not to raise my voice at her because he used to do it a lot and it scared her. Also, that he controlled her with money. We've dated for a couple of years now and she's never given me a reason to speak bad about her, so I believe her.

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#45 The Best Move

From my experiences, I’ve learned to always pay attention to that first date story when you ask, “So why did you and your ex break up?” My ex had this crazy story about her ex-husband and all the things he did to make her leave. Fast forward five years and if I wasn’t constantly accused of doing the same things, I would’ve realized this woman had a pattern. I got out and it was the best move I’ve ever made.

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#46 Life Line

I was in a relationship for three years with a divorcee. Anytime he brought up wanting to get engaged, I had nightmares about aliens abducting me on my wedding day. Needless to say, I knew deep down we weren’t right together. He was controlling and unbending in his ways. He also got tipsy and phoned my dad to complain about me working too hard and not being at home with him. He told my dad to go get me because I wouldn’t listen to him…

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#47 Hand Reaching Out

When my ex put down alcoholics, even though I came from a long line of alcoholics and he knew that. When I finally admitted that my life was unmanageable and I was an alcoholic, he didn’t take me seriously. In fact, he denied my feelings and said, “You’re nothing like them, just slow down.” That eventually led to opioid use. Anyways, people who don’t take a hand reaching out and help them are always a glaring red flag.

File:Sad girl cropped.jpg - Wikimedia CommonsWikimedia Commons

#48 Plotting an Escape

My friend married a divorcee. He wouldn’t do anything around the house, complained about her cooking, and other terrible things. When they had a kid, he’d play video games (ones he could pause) but was “too busy” to get the kid if they were crying. He was 10 years older than her but ran up credit cards and invested in stupid schemes. She secretly saved money and just up and left him.

File:Video-games-1557358.jpg - Wikimedia CommonsWikimedia Commons

#49 Happy Family Life

I didn't marry him, but found out something awful after two years of dating him. We lived together for a bit and it turned out I was the other woman. He'd come live with me when he was in couple’s therapy with her and would tell her he was with family (she didn't get along with his family). He even somehow got his kids to never mention me.

Knowing how manipulative he was, I wrote her a five-page letter complete with pictures of our travels and holidays together for her to understand that this wasn't a joke. I didn't want him to be able to lie his way out of this. I also found out I wasn't the only other woman. He and his wife are still together and even though he kept texting me for a year after I broke it off, I'm told they're still posting lovely pictures about their happy family life.

Sad depressed girl free imagePixy

#50 Making it Known

My wife had a previous marriage. Honestly, I see some of the things that got her in trouble. But from the stories, I can tell she had never been in a relationship where the guy made it known he was never going to leave. Once I made it known, and actually stuck through the bad, she quit the bad stuff quickly and we couldn't be happier. I married my best friend and I hope I find her in every life after this one.

Couple People Man - Free photo on PixabayPixabay

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