“I Got Divorced Because I Didn’t Want To Be A MARRIED Single Mom Anymore”
“Are you okay?” my then-husband asked.
I blinked and looked at him.
“You’ve been washing your hands for probably five minutes now.”
“Oh,” I said and turned off the sink and wiped my hands on a towel.
I’d been thinking of all of the things I needed to do that day and trying to figure out how I was going to get it all done, and I must have zoned out in the middle of washing my hands.
My toddlers had a check-up that afternoon, and I needed to remember to bring enough snacks, diapers and changes of clothes.
I needed to call the dentist and schedule their first check-up. I needed to respond to at least eight highly urgent work e-mails. I was behind on a deadline.
I needed to remember to mail off some boxes, and I also had to drop off some things at their daycare before I drove to work.
I also needed to fill out a form for their speech therapist, and one of their backpack’s zippers had broken and they needed a new one.
We were running out of toilet paper, and I needed to ask the daycare teacher about their nap schedule.
It wasn’t even 6 a.m., and I could already feel the burden of everything that needed to be done pressing down on my shoulders.
My then-husband kept trying to talk to me, but I couldn’t pay attention.
I was married, yet carrying all of the burden for the management and care of the children and our home.
I married my then-husband because he was smart and capable.
He managed several employees and dealt with schedules and logistics on a regular basis, yet he didn’t bring that same intelligence and skill set to our children and home life.
It’s not like I knew. It was my first time being a new parent too.
I didn’t magically know how many snacks, meals, bottles, outfits, diapers, wipes and butt paste I needed to send with them to daycare.
I read the paperwork when it was sent home and diligently followed it, yet my partner didn’t.
I passed out nearly as soon as my head hit the pillow, yet I never woke up rested.
I was constantly anxious that I’d forget or miss something, and even when I tried to sit and relax, I couldn’t stop worrying about the millions of tasks I could be doing.
I was struggling under the invisible yet visceral weight of mental load and its effect was devastating
So I left.
I’ve never regretted leaving. I thought I would. Especially after I kept hearing how much “harder” it would be for me once I was “actually” single.
But it was easier, frankly.
I wasn’t angry anymore, for one.
I was alone, but I didn’t feel alone like when I was in the relationship. I was happier as a divorced single mom than I’d ever been as a married single one.