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After more than ten months of separation, I have found that reality sucks. Let me tell you how.

  1. There is a lot of social stigmas attached to being a separated woman. Even in this day and age, although society is more accepting, I have repeatedly faced it- you're made to feel dishonour and shame. Doesn't matter that you stood up to abuse.

  2. Women look at you and judge you for having the balls to say no. I have written this before, and I cannot get over the fact that women are responsible for the fall of other women.

  3. Men married, young, old, bald, not so beautiful, etc think you are easy prey. The shocking part is that this breaks all barriers of class. It leaves you feeling gross, violated and worn out - the sheer relentlessness is tiring.

  4. The life of a separated woman is not Bellini and beach, There are a lot of bills to pay and a super -organised timetable is required to go out for a cup of coffee or dinner. If a woman is playing the role of two parents in a marriage, when you are thrown into the deep end, it's like playing the role of a superhuman. It is not exaggerated, but you will have to spend most of your time trying to play the role of a parent who is not present as well as managing your daily parental responsibility, and it is taxing.

  5. It is very lonely because the only adult conversation at home you will mostly have will be with the maid. Yes, I do have friends and family who call me, but when you are done with your routine for the day with your children, and you sit back, there is no one to call your own.

  6. The girl gang which is your go-to for the first six months and have your back become busy with their lives. Remember they have THE HUSBAND and there you are alone and looking up at your ceiling wondering how did you manage to screw up your marriage.

  7. I found that my children had themselves, found, love, while the love of my life walked away. They also soon came to their senses and got out of their relationships. I would never forget my daughter's boyfriend's mother judging me hard and fast for being separated. The condescending look that says "you are a loser".

  8. You become marked as the separated woman and hence the prided child who might date your children should be warned that it is similar to dating Lady Chatterley's offsprings.

  9. I navigate a social diary with mostly women and two male friends who are happily married and whose wives know for sure I am not a husband stealer.

  10. I haven't been to a wedding or any celebratory function for over a year, this was something I decided. I am not taking my broken heart to celebrations any sort.

  11. The separated woman is not allowed to grieve because she made her choice, she is not allowed to wallow in pain because she is TOUGH.

  12. Christmas and holidays are doubly hard. I had a complete meltdown toward my wedding anniversary.

  13. It gets better they say, but that piece of stone that is permanently lodged in your heart will take a long time to dislodge.

"Single mums do come in for a hard time. Society is incredibly judgmental. I know this. My life has taken me down several different paths I never expected it to take me down. Not in a million years. And I know the true meaning of getting by the skin of my teeth. I do. It doesn't matter whether you've got money or you haven't, whether you're famous or not. This is the case for all women actually, you have to carry on. You always have to carry on. And you can."

- Kate Winslet

To Be Me
Author: To Be Me
"To Be Me" is a series of biographical articles by an intelligent woman in a predicament she's trying to get out of. Writing is therapeutic for her and we hope it will encourage others like her to speak up.
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