The Definition of Divorce

dictionary booksI recently read that only two percent of American adults have parents that are still alive and married to each another. I’m one of the fortunate two percent, but my children are not. Divorce has had an impact, in some way or another, on most of our lives, but what does it really mean?

The American Heritage dictionary defines the noun divorce as:
1.The legal dissolution of a marriage. 2. A complete or radical separation of things closely connected, from the verb “vorced.”

Yeah, it’s a radical separation alright. Separation from your pension, your house, your family, your dreams, just about everything and everyone you love. Yes, divorce is a radical separation of things closely connected.

Our lives become intertwined through marriage. We take our vows, “Till death do us part” and it is only natural to assume our marriage will last forever. And when it doesn’t, separation from even the smallest things seems radical.

The dictionary goes on to define the verb “divorce” as:
1. To dissolve the marriage bond between. 2. To shed (one’s spouse by legal divorce). 3. To separate or remove, disunite.

Is anyone else thinking what I’m thinking?

What the heck does it mean “to shed one’s spouse”? I always thought of shedding as something my dog does. “To shed (one’s spouse…)” Definitions like that make marriage and people seem so disposable. Like a Dixie cup. “Okay, I’m done with you, so ta-ta. I’m shedding you now. Bye-bye, in the trash you go.”

This defining verb, “to shed,” equates divorce to snake-like behavior, but as unscrupulous as it may sound, this definition is fitting in some cases. Take the infamous Henry the VIII, who, after tiring of a wife, would “shed” her. Only he didn’t divorce his wives; he had them beheaded.

I think if I had to define “divorce” in my own words, it would be more like this: 1. a pain in the royal behind, in the heart, and in the wallet. 2. From the adjective “sucky.” There’s not a whole lot more to say about divorce than that.

Statistically, divorce will drop your wealth an average of 77%. As a divorced person, you lose economies of scale with living expenses and investments. What were once shared expenses, between presumably two incomes, are now essentially
double.

It’s definitely not a pleasant part of any relationship or life. But, like a lot of things, divorce has to be experienced to be fully appreciated. After you’ve gone through one, unless you’re a complete dummy, you will come away with a better understanding of life, and the big picture.

From the Tuelbox
Take note. Divorce is a radical separation. If you are contemplating divorce or just want to quantify the experience, however difficult or “sucky” you think divorce will be, take that number and multiply it by the rotation of the earth, then hang on! Visit tomi at www.tomituel.net

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