Divorcing My High School Sweetheart

Updated: Aug 23, 2020

Divorce doesn’t always mean an ugly ending to a beautiful tale. Nor does it always mean a beautiful ending to an ugly tale. For me, my divorce in 2018 was the ending of the chapter of marriage, and the beginning of another, as good friends and parents to our two beautiful children.

For us, it was the acceptance of the death of a slowly withering love that we failed to keep alive. Yet with this death was the acceptance of the new chapters in our lives that may prove more fulfilling than the last few chapters of our marriage. Our divorce wasn’t a result of abuse or extreme discontent. It was a result of subtle, yet detrimental, neglect, which we’re both responsible for, yet were grossly unaware of until it was too late.

Parenthood is one of the greatest blessings in life. But adopting the role of mother and father can often lead to the loss of identity as husband and wife. Focus can easily shift exclusively to the children, and away from the intimate relationship that paved the way for the creation of these same beings. As happens all too often, we eventually found ourselves fully engrossed in our children and careers, yet struggling to preserve the bond that we once swore to God we’d cherish forever.

My commitment to raising my children abroad and his obligation towards his career eventually took us to different parts of the world, where our marriage continued to weaken. Of course, we first committed ourselves to trying to save our marriage, but eventually faced the stark reality that not only had our lives taken different paths, but our hearts as well.

In our 14 years of marriage, we made our way, hand-in-hand, through numerous stages of life, from our conversion to Islam, to multiple moves, to parenthood, and countless other adventures. We have shared nearly half of our lives together and our love resulted in two of the most amazing human beings we know, who we are blessed to call our children. And though our connection as lovers has ended, our bond as friends, and more importantly, as parents, will forever be held sacred. We learned the hard way that nurturing important relationships is easily neglected, yet comes at detrimental costs – costs that our two beautiful children should never be made to pay. Thus, we will continue making our way through life together for the sake of our children, now as co-parents and as best friends.

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