"My Husband Wants a Divorce.”

Divorced women how to Cope with the Devastating Blow

How many times in your life have you heard those words from a friend or an acquaintance looking to you for help or advice? What do you say?

Shortly after my own divorce, an acquaintance approached me in the grocery store, and to my complete surprise, she uttered just the words, “I’m getting a divorce”. I was totally shocked, as she and I hadn’t shared more than a distant wave “hello” between us in years. But something about the fact that I’d just gone through what she was about to go through, bonded us.

divorce, women and divorce, divorce and dating

Ladies; here’s what I like to call a "bitch slap of truth"; if he wants to leave, let him go . How can I say that? Go brew some coffee. Get comfortable. This is going to be a long one.

As women, we have this weird ‘need’ to want to change ourselves into whatever HE wants us to be. And when he decides that what we've turned ourselves into, for him, just isn't enough, we throw up our hands and we say, "What else do I need to change to make you happy?"

Girls...here's the bottom line; He's a MAN…a flesh and bone human being. He's not a Louis Vuitton bag, or a sexy pair of Louboutins (seriously, I’d tear the head clean off of anyone who tried to take either of these from me). He's a MAN. And as such, he's gonna change his mind ten million times in this lifetime, about you and every-damn-thing-else, before he decides what he really 'wants'. Do you know what he really wants?

When he says, "I want a divorce..." it means that he wants to be without you. It means that he wants to dip his toe in the pool of his definition of ‘freedom’, to grab himself a taste of what he thinks he’s been missing (Ouch. I know that hurts but keep reading, I promise it gets better.)


But that doesn't mean that there's a thing wrong with you. In my own experience with those little words, my mind heard him saying: "I need to be by myself, so you can stop wasting your time with my lame self, and find someone who's worthy of the fabulous, stunning creation that you are. I’m truly not worthy of you." I'm not kidding. That's about what it adds up to for me. And I'm perfectly okay with that.

Girls, if/when your husband decides that he needs to be 'alone', or that you should 'take some time apart', or whatever his wording happens to be, don't misunderstand what I'm saying; yes, you should be disappointed; especially if his epiphany comes from out of the clear blue. Be disappointed. Be angry. Be upset. Throw stuff! Those are all very natural feelings and reactions to the possibility that this person that you thought you knew, this person with Whom you've shared everything for the last who knows how long, now wants 'out'. But once the dust settles, and you're calm, cool, and collected, you WILL be thinking, "I am an amazing creature! This is my time to figure out why I think I NEED to cling to this particular person, who has been verbal about the fact that I'm "not it". I don’t care who he thinks he is, or who you think you are you deserve to be “It”.

Take this time to work on who you are, and who you want to be. I know...it sounds fairly elementary, and it really is a total 'no brainer'. If he wants to 'figure out what he wants', I'll bet you a hundred bucks that if you use the time to do the same, and you're 100% honest with yourself, you'll find that he's not “It” either, regardless of how long you've been together, or what you share in life.

"I’m getting a divorce" isn't necessarily about you. It's his thing. Let him have his thing. Go find yours.





Debbie Burgin is an 11+ year divorcee, divorce coach, and author of The Joy Of  EX

Debbie works with divorced and divorcing women who struggle with self-esteem and financial issues, and would like to create a better life for themselves and their children.

Debbie was divorced in 2000, and in the five years following her divorce had been “bankrupted, repossessed and damn-near foreclosed on”, but knew when it was time to pick herself up, dust herself off, and get down to the business of creating a brand new life!

What separates Debbie’s service from that of other divorce coaches is that she only works with individuals who are ready to get on with the business of moving forward with their lives after divorce, but have no idea where to start. Her clients receive undiluted, extremely specific, step-by-step information on what they need to do to move forward with power after a divorce.

Debbie’s book, “The Joy of Ex” is available on here The Joy Of Ex


Coping and getting ready to get back into the world of dating can be tough for divorced singles. If you would like to talk about how to get back into the world of dating after a divorce I'm here to serve you. The world of online dating can be a great place to try to easy back into dating after a divorce. I have been working with singles learning to use online dating sites since 2003 and can make that transition a little less stressful. You should clink this link to set up a consultation with me and get ready to date again.

I want to thank Debbie for sharing her article, book, and coaching site with my readers. I encourage you to visit her site and seek her council. She's been there and back in an inspiring way!



  1. Leah

    February 15, 2012 at 10:19 am

    Women get caught up in trying to shape themselves up to some imagined standards that fit another person's demand… Maybe a divorce is that reality check some need to STOP. To go work on discovering their TRUE self, to learn to appreciate and respect it. Guess what? 99% of the times once you're done finding out your self, learning to appreciate it and respect it, and establish for yourself clearly where you are willing to bend a bit and compromise and where you are sticking to your principles unless a situation is out of the ordinary – a man would pop up in your life who will actually appreciate you exactly for who you are, instead of for a potential fake persona you may transform yourself into according to his desires.

  2. Tony Taylor

    February 15, 2012 at 11:19 am

    I am guy, so I am going to take this post with "caution." While I have never been married, and I have been in serious relationships, I feel the bad word is "change." Some people want to change for their partner, or want their partner to change for them.  Sometimes we can be indecisive, true. I think I know what I truly want. I won't settle for less. Sometimes we settle, and we are looking on the outside feeling we may want out because we weren't strong enough in the first place to acknowledge the fact that the person we chose may not have been all we wanted. So we marry for reasons, of children, stress from parents, and society of "it is what you are supposed to do."  So then we want her to change into what we want her to be, and even if she does change, we know she isn't truly the person she is trying to be for us. I told myself I am not stopping til I found the girl I want. Not the one I settled for yet dreaming of the one I really want. After a few bad apples, luckily I found her.

  3. Sherie

    February 15, 2012 at 12:35 pm

    "To thine own self be true…"  Will Shakespeare had it right all those years ago!  I agree that if someone wants to go, you should. Trying to change yourself for anyone, instead of for yourself, is a recipe for disaster. I really enjoyed this post, thanks for sharing!

    • datingdiva61

      February 15, 2012 at 2:39 pm

      I know you have got to keep yourself true to self! Then no matter what happens you will land on your feet!

  4. Claude West

    February 15, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    Debbie, I enjoyed reading your article and certainly as a "Male" wondering if the shoe was on the other foot…… Your advise works both ways.  We are way too lax in our relationships to even see it coming when it was brewing for years.  Keep up the good work.

  5. Denise

    February 15, 2012 at 1:42 pm

    I really appreciate your no BS talk about this, it may be hard to hear, but it's important to be said.

  6. Sloan

    February 15, 2012 at 3:52 pm

    This was truly inspiring Liz!
    I love how you pointed out how WE change for men.  It's funny how the entire world thinks it's the other way around.

  7. Honestly, hard for me to relate since it's not happened to me.  I've been married to the same man since 1972!  And they thought it wouldn't last… !  (-_-)  But certainly an interesting post.  Thanks for sharing. x0x
    The LEARNED Preneur @ NormaDoiron.NET ˚ .ღ 。

    • datingdiva61

      February 16, 2012 at 10:54 am

      it’s interesting to me too and I have no idea what it would be like either Norma.. I have never been through a divorce but I know that it’s got to be very painful.

  8. Stacy Stevens

    February 15, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    I LOVE THIS!  I was so upset when my ex-husband got someone else pregnant and told me he wanted a divorce.  I was scared to death, 23, and getting ready to raise two kids on my own.  Now I'm thankful for his error!  I have two of the greatest kids on earth, I've fallen in love with my best friend and we are quite happy!  I can't say the same for his second, or third wife, or the rest of the kids he left in his path of self-destruction.  He didnt deserve me then, and he certainly does not deserve the strong successful woman I grew into once I was far away from his side!  You ROCK!

  9. Sharon O'Day

    February 15, 2012 at 7:00 pm

    Liz, I look at these situations from a slightly different point of view: not from the relationship angle, but from the financial angle.  And I am always amazed at how easily women relinquish complete control over money in the marriage.  Then, when things go awry, they're at Square One on ALL fronts.  My rule:  never ever ever let go of knowledge — specific knowledge — of where you two stand financially.  Because starting over without that knowledge just means starting out without your fair share.  (And, yes, I mean 'never.')

  10. Kelly

    February 15, 2012 at 8:14 pm

    Woo Hoo!!!! I feel like standing on a table, jumping up and down and clapping my hands!! AMEN!!!! Preach it, Sista!!! You got that right!!! If he wants to leave – LET HIM!!! Forget about all that crap of "trying to win your ex back" – BULLSHIT!!!! First GET ANGRY! Then GET OVER HIM and then go out and be the BEST YOU you can and make room in your heart for someone who WILL appreciate you! Right on!

    • Angie

      February 15, 2012 at 8:29 pm

      I’m with you Kelly!! I love this post. So real.

      • datingdiva61

        February 15, 2012 at 8:44 pm

        Thank you Dollface.. I like it too!

  11. Suzanne Jones

    February 15, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    Well I love this straightforward post. The only thing I question is this: Do people, men or women, really not know something is up and coming? I was the one who said I needed space but I meant it. I just needed space to figure out why I was having the feelings I was having. I wasn't allowed that space. The ex says he didn't see it coming. What a load of bullshit. I could give you an armslength of things leading up to it and I have never minced my words. I say exactly what I want. So again I ask. Do people really not see red flags, or are men just like a light switch?

  12. Linda

    February 15, 2012 at 9:25 pm

    This actually can go both way–frequently when a woman says "I want a divorce," this can place a self-esteme crisis onto him just as it is to a woman. It is the rejection from the person we have trusted and had faith in and the feeling that they will always be there. Thus putting the person into a co-dependant behaviour that the person will do anything to get the person back. Relationships are not about changing them–it is changing yuorself, Not changing yourself for them but changing yourself for you. Good insights about letting go!

  13. Lorii Abela

    February 16, 2012 at 12:47 am

    Thanks for sharing your great thoughts about divorce, Liz. Divorce can typically happens to every marriage but you can always avoid it to happen when you two have an open communication. 

  14. Tamara M

    February 16, 2012 at 5:29 am

     "It's his thing. Let him have his thing. Go find yours." <– My favorite part. Sums up the whole post.

    • datingdiva61

      February 16, 2012 at 10:34 am

      I loved that too!!! Hold on to what make you amazing and let him got..;)

  15. denny hagel

    February 16, 2012 at 7:00 am

    I love your straight forward way of writing! And I must say I agree with most of your points…rather than view them as only "men" think of them as "the wrong man for me!" I shared your opinion for many years after two divorces (Ugh!) until I found the "right man" for me! Life is sooo good! Ha! Great article! :)

    • datingdiva61

      February 16, 2012 at 7:03 am

      I love her points too!!! unlike my guest author I have never been divorced so I wouldn’t know what this feels like..but I agree about the wrong guy..

  16. Vicky Savellis-Grant

    February 16, 2012 at 11:18 pm

    Great advice… especially about the letting go!   Thanks for sharing.

  17. Tina Sibley

    February 17, 2012 at 6:03 am

    Fab post Debbie.  My husband announced he 'wanted a divorce' 3 years ago.  Initially I was shocked to the core – however, my coach and NLP training kicked in – I had the support of a couple of amazing friends who were also life coaches and so I got through it all faster than I would have previously thought possible.  Now I'm happier than I've ever been in my life – enjoying who I am and doing what I want to do :-)

  18. Susan Preston

    February 19, 2012 at 7:15 pm

    Great article, Debbie! If someone wants to leave a relationships, a marriage, etc. it is best to let them go. Trying to change to get them to stay, is not the answer. What I might suggest is to really have a heart to heart with them and to see where you both truly are, first. Sometimes, one of the partners is feeling that they have been treated as an option instead of a priority for some time and they feel it really wouldn't matter if they left. Thank you, Liz for sharing this.

  19. Solvita

    February 21, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    Absolutely agree with this… there can’t be a healthy marriage if one of the partners wants to leave. Marriage requires two people be on the same page. However I agree with Susan, it is very useful to check if there are any ways to save it first. It is not easy most of the time, but nothing can be worse then being to attached to a person who is leaving you. Thank you Liz for sharing Debbie’s article. :)

  20. Ms. Cheevious

    June 12, 2012 at 2:45 pm

    Perfect advice. Experienced that. Spent the time to discover who I was again (aside from him). I L-O-V-E life now. Nuff said.

    • datingdiva61

      June 16, 2012 at 9:05 pm

      awesome sweetie !!!! Glad you got yourself together !!

  21. Lisa Jey Davis

    June 12, 2012 at 2:47 pm

    Funny – my hubby wanted the divorce and was very adamant about it but wouldn’t leave. He actually had the gall to stay around and make my life so miserable that there was nothing left to do BUT divorce him. I took the time to get healthy mentally and physically – and I am in sheer bliss. Divorce was GOOD for me.

    • datingdiva61

      June 16, 2012 at 9:05 pm

      I’m so glad Lisa!!! That is important that you take the time to get mentally healthy after a divorce! My husband was divorced and i started to date him as soon as the ink was dry.. it was not good timimg and I broke up with him. We stayed in touch and after he was better we started dating got married and 27 years later we’re still together and happily married.

  22. Divorced Kat

    January 20, 2015 at 3:29 pm

    Fight for your marriage — I sure did — but get real about when it’s time to stop. You can’t fix the relationship alone. You can’t walk around miserable and lonely for years on end. I finally admitted that for all my love and effort, my ex had problems only he could fix. He couldn’t or wouldn’t, so I had to walk away. It was heartbreaking, but I did the right thing.

    • Elizabeth

      January 23, 2015 at 8:41 pm

      Thank you for sharing that, Kat! I think you did the right thing too!


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