The salesman I purchased my car from shamed me for being divorced

M. Brown
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**This is a work of nonfiction based on actual events that I have experienced firsthand; used with permission.

I remember being at a car dealership buying my first car at age 27, shortly after my divorce. I was filling out the paperwork and the car salesman asked me if I was married. I let him know that I was divorced.

“Wow, you move fast!” He said, chuckling.

That comment stuck with me, even to this day. I'm sure I was reading too much into it. Maybe it was silly and just a thoughtless comment made for humor but, in any case, it made me feel like I was perceived as a fickle young woman who didn’t take marriage seriously.

Obviously, the person who made the comment knew nothing of the circumstances surrounding my marriage and subsequent divorce. My insecurities about being a young woman who was already divorced plagued me for quite some time. I was left thinking that I had already ‘failed’ at marriage.

The truth was that I ended up getting married before I was really ready due to intense pressure from the person I was with at the time. I was quite happy being in a non-married relationship and waiting to see where it went.

My boyfriend at the time was not okay with this.

There was a heavy implication that I had to prove my love through marriage.

Being in my early 20s and not having much relationship experience, I fell for this manipulative rouse, eventually giving in to the pressure. I convinced myself that I would probably marry him at some point, anyways.

That was a huge mistake in hindsight.

No matter what age you are, the amount of love you have for someone shouldn’t be used as a tool to manipulate you into a serious decision like marriage. I learned the hard way that I shouldn’t have given in to someone else’s insecurities.

Getting married is no joke. It’s a decision that can affect you for the rest of your life emotionally, mentally, and also financially. Don’t ever feel pressured to jump in before you really want to.

Many people get married and start having children right away.

I didn’t.

I realized pretty quickly that the man I was married to would not be a healthy influence as a father. There was abuse. The was toxicity. There was absolutely no way I was going to bring a child into the mess that became my first marriage.

If you’re in a marriage and you don’t feel that it’s right for you or there’s behavior that’s abusive in any way, making the decision not to have children can be a blessing in disguise.

So many people have a dream of starting a family and want to start having children right away when they get married. I learned that even though there were temptations to start a family with my ex-husband early on in our marriage, ultimately the choice not to was absolutely the right one for me.

Eventually, I realized that I was extremely lucky to get out of that abusive situation alive. I didn’t ‘fail’ at all. I survived — then ultimately thrived.

Lots of people who realize they’ve made a mistake by getting married too soon feel as though divorce isn’t an option because they think divorce equals failure.

Most people don’t get married to get divorced — but it happens — even with the best of intentions.

I’m here to tell you that divorce doesn’t equal failure. Divorce can save your life. Divorce can open your mind. Divorce can teach you how to be a better partner for someone else down the road.

Divorce doesn’t have to be the end of the world. It can be the beginning of a whole new one. And don't let anyone who knows nothing about your life or history make you feel bad about it.


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Host of The Pondering Stepmom Podcast. Writing about relationships, lifestyle, family & self-improvement.

California State

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