My ex-husband never remarried, then he passed away

Tracey Folly

*this is a work of nonfiction based on actual events that happened to me personally

I am sorry my ex-husband will never have a chance at a second marriage now that he's dead.

At the age most young adults are going off to college, my husband and I got married.

He was eighteen years old on the day of our wedding, and I was nineteen years old. To be more specific, it was one month past his eighteenth birthday, and it was one month before my twentieth birthday. I was nearly two years older than he was, but don't let that fool you. We were both far too immature to get married.

At the age many young adults are making their way into the corporate world after college graduation, my husband and I got divorced.

He was twenty-two years old on the day I filed for divorce, and I was twenty-four years old. Although it would take several years before our divorce would be final, I consider the last day of our marriage to be the day I moved out for good.

A little more than a decade later, I found out that my husband--who was my ex-husband by then--had died. A family member saw the news of his death on television. Yes, his untimely death was unfortunately a newsworthy death.

I didn't believe it was really him. Surely, I thought, there are other men with the same name. It wasn't an uncommon name, after all.

Unfortunately, it really was him. I say "unfortunately" because it was indeed unfortunate for his friends, family, and loved ones. I didn't fit into any of those categories by then. We were no more than strangers who had once shared a life. No big deal.

Through his obituary, conversations with former in-laws, and Facebook, I learned that my ex-husband had been cohabitating with a new girlfriend at the time of his death. He had never remarried.

Now that neither our marriage nor his death is fresh, I can't help but wonder why he didn't remarry. I also wonder whether he ever would have remarried if given the chance.

I've never remarried either, but I think my ex-husband would have remarried eventually if he hadn't died so young. I can't guess whether he would have made his most recent girlfriend his second wife. The little I know of her comes from Facebook posts where she talked about finding a new partner less than a year after our shared partner died, not that we ever actually shared him. Our relationships were separated by at least a decade.

Even though I never remarried either, I still have that option while his options have been prematurely taken away from him. I feel bad about it, not that it's my fault. It certainly isn't.

Nonetheless, it wasn't until after his death that I began to feel anything like empathy for him and his short life. So I am sincerely sorry that he isn't able to do the things he wanted to do, whether or not that included marrying again.

What I do know is that his second marriage would have had an excellent chance of being better than his first. His first marriage--our first marriage--wasn't good for either of us. At the time, I didn't know how to make it better. I only knew how to leave, not that I regret it.

We were far too young to marry. While that wasn't the only reason our marriage failed spectacularly, it didn't help. He often told me he loved me, "... but we got married too young." He was right about the latter.

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Writing about relationships online since 2009.

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