Things not to say to a person getting divorced. 

All of the following are things people have actually said to me in the past three weeks….

1.  I hope someone good/nice/fun moves into your house.

Ugh…. I just told you I’m moving, could we maybe ponder on that for a moment before we move on to your potential relationship with the person who will live in my house?  A house that I don’t want to leave, by the way.

2.  We will always be friends, nothing will change. 

Not true. Everything changes. People take sides.  People you thought were your friend will choose to spend more time with your ex and this will hurt. A lot.

3.  What happened?  Who’s fault was it?  

I know it’s human nature to be curious, but asking me to share this information is unfair and just plain rude. Especially if it is right after you just said #2.

4.  You are still young/attractive, you won’t be single long, you will find the right person.

This is the last thing on my mind right now.  I’m still trying to wrap my mind around the fact that I was married to the wrong person, there’s no way I’m contemplating a first date with anyone, let alone another marriage.

5.  How are the kids?  It’s probably better you’re divorcing, I’m sure they had to know something was wrong…

I appreciate your concern for my kids, but implying I exposed them to unhealthy marriage isn’t helping me in my process.

6.  I never liked him anyway. 

Well, I did. At some point I though he was the right person for me and it doesn’t help me to know that you thought he wasn’t.

7.  I bet he will start dating right away. 

Uhhhhh, how is this statement supposed to help me?

8.  I didn’t call/text/come over because I figured you needed space. 

A tornado just ripped through my world, I need my friends now more than ever. Giving me space just sends me the message that this situation is so awkward for you, you’d avoid dealing with it even if it means you sacrifice our friendship in the process.

9.  You should take him to the cleaners!

First of all, if you know me at all you should know I’d never do that… no matter WHAT has happened. I appreciate you wanting to take up a sword in my battle, but suggesting I treat him unfairly isn’t healthy for any of us.

10.  Let me know if you need anything. 

I don’t know what I need right now, I’m so emotionally overwhelmed I don’t know how to figure out WHAT I need.  Stop by with wine, ask me to go for a walk, take me out to lunch. Just don’t ask me to articulate what I need, because right now I don’t know up from down.

11.  How much does a divorce cost?  

Reminding me that I am having to pay for something awful to happen to me is like a punch in the gut. Honestly, if you are that curious, just google it.

Bottom line:

Don’t ask a lot of questions.

If you say something, mean it.

Divorce is like a death, but that doesn’t mean I think it shouldn’t be happening.

I will be ok.  I promise. 


11 thoughts on “Things not to say to a person getting divorced. 

  1. Not sure if I ever said #6 exactly that way but I’ve said similar of late and for that I am deeply sorry.

    Since we are geographically separate I can’t take you out or distract you but I welcome insomnia texts 🙂

    Thank you for writing this. You said what so many need to see and understand. You did it perfectly.


  2. Mel, I have heard every one of these. And you are correct. They aren’t very helpful. After 22 years of marriage I found it incredibly difficult to walk away and look to the future. It wasn’t until after a sold year of actual divorce that I even felt like dating again, and even that I did half heartedly. I don’t know your situation, who made the decision and what the circumstances are, but I can offer an ear, from someone who walked this path, and managed to remain friends with my ex for the kids’ sake. Please know you can reach out to me of you have any questions or just want to talk to someone who has been there. I can listen without advice. My thoughts and prayers go with you.


  3. I’m so sorry to hear this…wish I was closer because wine and walks are what I love!! My thoughts are with you all. (((Hugs)))


  4. Very good blog Mel, I had heard all of those and more when I went through divorce. If you’ve never been through it, you just can’t know what it’s like. No fun for anybody. Keep your head up and take one day at a time. Sending virtual donuts your way 😊🍩


  5. Yep I remember hearing all of these. And then when it didn’t go through the questions were even worse. How can you trust him? How do you know this won’t happen again… Oh NO I didn’t already have those doubts thanks for reinforcing them.

    Liked by 1 person

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