The other night one of my sisters, Donna, took me out to dinner. She wanted to check on me and show her support which was nice. I am sure that this support stuff is easier on women than men. It is easy for a man to feel pathetic. No man wants anyone to ever think about him, "He better man up!" Men, generally, aren't allowed to hurt. But, I digress. Donna and I had a nice talk.
Donna hasn't had the easiest life. One marriage she had ended in her spouse cheating on her and subsequent divorce. When she finally found someone that treated her like she deserved, that husband died of cancer after only a few years of marriage. She has found another "good one" now. Amazingly, she has always been able to be joyous throughout all her ordeals. Oh sure she cried, but it never beat her. I have always admired that about her.
My sister is one of the few people in my life that knows how I feel. I was compelled to ask her, "What hurt the worse: the infidelity and divorce or the death of your husband?"
She didn't hesitate, "The divorce was MUCH worse. When a marriage ends in death, one has the comfort of knowing that the love and marriage was alive till the end. There is no control there. No one CHOSE to leave, it was just death. When someone goes through a divorce such as this, there is failure and someone CHOSE to betray and leave. It is MUCH tougher and makes the victim feel worthless."
Her words gave me comfort - even if for just a short while. SHE KNOWS! It is strange. When a spouse dies, everyone comes and comforts and is "there" for you. However, in a divorce one suffers and grieves alone - a hurt WORSE than losing the spouse to death. It just doesn't make sense.