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“Love” and “Divorce” Are Not Mutually-Exclusive Terms
by Lisa McCourt
Editor's Note from Lisa McCourt: To follow up on my recent post about my freakishly-customized divorce, I want to share a misperception I see frequently with my Joy-Training clients . . . one that has me raising a new flag for divorce-reform! Endings can be as beautiful and natural as beginnings if we train ourselves to see them that way. We’re probably far from reaching a cultural tipping point on our collective need to demonize divorce, but isn’t inching toward those tipping points what All Things Healing is all about?
I’m seeing a lot of suffering lately around marriages that are falling apart. And it makes me feel downright rebellious. Not only because of the tremendous obstacles I had to stare down when creating my own original paradigm for divorce, but now on behalf of my smart, kind, competent clients getting totally unraveled by what I consider absolutely unnecessary, erroneous, and archaic notions about marriage and nature of human partnership.
I used to think that true, lasting love was “normal.” We’re told that’s how it happens. You pick one person and you vow to be in love with that person forever and you get married to prove it. And I don’t mean to imply that I’ve become completely cynical about forever-love. I still do believe that it’s possible to fall in love early in life and remain in love till death do you part. I very much do believe it’s possible. But it’s not common. It’s not a given like we’ve been led to believe. It’s rare and wonderful, and a phenomenon to be wildly celebrated when it happens.
But we’re brought up to believe that true, deeply-connected love spanning decades upon decades is an integral component to a life well-lived. We’re brought up to expect it. Then, when we see that it’s not happening that way for us, we feel that we’ve failed horribly at something that should have come so naturally. This societal distortion is responsible for so much pain. I see it every day in the Joy-Training work I do.
Most marriages today do end in divorce. Society tells us this is a horrible, unnatural, regrettable fact . . . but what if it’s simply a reflection of how we, as humans, are coming ever-closer to living from our authentic, true cores, instead of living to fulfill some outer-imposed expectation? People fall in love, and it’s spectacularly perfect and natural for that to happen. People fall out of love, too. People who fall out of love aren’t monsters. They aren’t selfish and they aren’t laden with deep emotional problems that need fixing. They’re just people who have grown and evolved in a direction that makes meaningful connection no longer possible with the person they were once in love with.
I find it unconscionable that in many states, you can’t even legally obtain a divorce without claiming “emotional cruelty.” Are we really that terrified, as a culture, of being alone? Do we really have to create laws to ensure that no one ever changes their mind about being in love with us? Who are we kidding by making it against the law to fall out of love?
I’ve been labeled “lucky” for being able to create the kind of loving, fully conscious divorce I’ve created with my ex. Yes. Of course I am. But I don’t have the market cornered on luck. I believe any couple dedicated to doing some real work to uncover and express their deepest truths will find themselves either back in love, or in the position to part ways with genuine appreciation and reciprocal respect. “Love” and “divorce” should not be mutually-exclusive terms.
Read Lisa’s prior article about conscious divorce here, and watch for a follow-up article soon at All Things Healing!
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About the Author
Unconditional love expert Lisa McCourt is a dynamic speaker, seminar leader and author whose 34 books have sold more than 5.5 million copies worldwide. Her new book, Juicy Joy – 7 Simple Steps to Your Glorious, Gutsy Self, teaches people to embrace "radical authenticity" to fully experience unbridled joy in life. Lisa lives in South Florida with her two children. For more information, visit www.LisaMcCourt.com.