Are You Willing to Get Divorced?

When I was about to get married, someone gave me this advice:

Be willing to get divorced.

I remember thinking, “What??? Really? That’s going to be your marriage advice to me? Be willing to get divorced? I shrugged it off as advice from an old, bitter married person and vowed to never let myself get to that place in my marriage.

Then, recently, I understood what this advice meant.


It’s been a hard season for my husband and me, if I’m being totally honest. It feels a little weird to say that since no one is hurt, or dying, or about to go bankrupt, or in really any danger at all. But still. It’s true.

It’s been a hard season.

And during one of the most difficult days of this particular season, we met with some friends of ours who happen to be really good at counseling people through difficult seasons. They asked us how we were doing. I said fine. Then, of course, they pushed in a little further.

“No, seriously, how are you doing?”

I hemmed and hawed until finally I couldn’t hold it in any longer. I explained how exhausted and hopeless I was feeling. That’s when the husband asked me a question I wasn’t expecting.

“Do you believe in divorce?” he asked.

I paused.

I’m a Christian. I grew up in church. My parents have been married 35 years. I read the Bible and know what it says. And these friends of ours are Christians, too. I knew what the right answer to the question was. But I was pretty sure our friends weren’t looking for the “right” answer.

So I gave them the real one—the one I was really, truly feeling in that moment.

I said, “I mean… I believe in marriage. I trust God uses marriage to make us the best versions of ourselves… and I believe God can make the most out of any marriage. I don’t want to get a divorce—I don’t think anyone does…but I don’t know… I also don’t think God wants us to stay in a marriage where unhealthy patterns are the norm.”

“If both people are willing to work on it and change, that’s one thing,” I continued. “But if one person is working to change, and the other person isn’t willing… that just seems like a recipe for disaster. So, to answer your question: divorce is not totally out of the question for me.”

It felt good to say it out loud.

But at the same time it was terrifying. I looked to my husband, expecting him to look horrified and hurt. I looked back to our friends, expecting them to be shaking their heads at me in disapproval. Instead, what I found were several heads nodding in agreement.

“Good,” our friend stated. “Now we can get somewhere.”

From there, we spent the next hour or so talking about what it really takes to stay married. We admitted divorce was an option. It wasn’t the best option, it wasn’t the option either of us wanted, but it was an option—one either of us could choose to pursue at any given moment.

And something about coming to that realization actually gave me the energy and motivation I needed to work on my marriage.

It made me see how my marriage is not a given.

My husband doesn’t have to stay. I don’t have to stay. Either of us can opt out anytime we want. Something about putting divorce on the table actually wakes me up to the responsibility I have in and to my own marriage.

Suddenly, in that moment, I realized the significance of the “be willing to get divorced” advice I had received before my wedding. The person who gave me that advice wasn’t saying, “divorce is easy,” or “if this doesn’t work out, you can always try again.”

What that person was trying to say (I think) was, “treat your spouse, and your marriage, like there are no guarantees, like relationships are fragile and like this whole thing could come to an end.”

I think they were saying, “If you want your marriage to stay together, you have to acknowledge the fact that it could fall apart.” (tweet this)

This advice has changed the way I experience marriage.

We’ve made several changes to our circumstances; we work less and play more. We make a point to eat meals together, without our phones. We have rituals and routines for connecting with one another. We’ve found people to support us and walk with us through the difficult journey of marriage.

It feels like we’re dating again. We’re moving out of a hard season and into a really good one. Sometimes being willing to consider what we don’t want to happen in our relationships helps us to better nurture them.


No, seriously, we can be friends...we can email back and forth and everything! :) 

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.
Posted in

Allison Fallon

I write books. I help people write books. I believe a regular practice of writing can change your life.

18 thoughts on “Are You Willing to Get Divorced?”

  1. Initially, I had no idea where you were going with this, but it makes sense. I think I have understood that advice in a roundabout way this year. My husband and I will celebrate our first anniversary next weekend – and we’re thrilled. Our first year hasn’t been a difficult year in the ways so many prepared us before we married, but it has been a hard year. The week we returned from our honeymoon, two of our best friends – we were in their wedding, they were in ours – announced to us they were getting a divorce. We were shocked. Only two weekends before, they were celebrating with us: together.

    Now, almost one year later, their divorce is being finalized while we celebrate one year together. As long as we have been married, our two friends have been separating. We have been walking in a strange parallel with them, but I resonate with you entirely: “Something about putting divorce on the table actually wakes me up to the responsibility I have in and to my own marriage.” This year was a wake up call to potential I had not imagined, the potential to fail in marriage.

    All that to say, thank you for putting into words how I have been feeling. This has helped me process and gain better perspective.

  2. A fascinating discussion is worth comment. I do believe that you
    ought to publish more about this subject, it might not be a taboo
    subject but generally folks don’t discuss such subjects. To the next!
    All the best!!

  3. I do not even know the way I stopped up right here,
    however I thought this publish was once good. I don’t recognize who you might be but certainly you are going to a famous blogger if you happen to aren’t already.

  4. You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation but I
    find this topic to be really something that I think I would never understand.
    It seems too complicated and extremely broad for me. I am
    looking forward for your next post, I’ll try to get the hang of it!

  5. Hello there! Do you know if they make any plugins
    to assist with Search Engine Optimization? I’m trying to get my blog
    to rank for some targeted keywords but I’m not
    seeing very good results. If you know of any please share.
    Many thanks!

  6. Thanks on your marvelous posting! I truly enjoyed reading it,
    you may be a great author. I will ensure that I bookmark your
    blog and will often come back down the road.
    I want to encourage one to continue your great writing, have a nice afternoon!

  7. Great goods from you, man. I’ve understand your stuff previous to and you’re just extremely excellent.

    I actually like what you’ve acquired here, certainly like what you are saying and the way in which you say it.

    You make it entertaining and you still care for to keep it smart.

    I cant wait to read far more from you. This is really a tremendous site.

  8. I’m amazed, I must say. Seldom do I encounter a blog that’s
    both equally educative and amusing, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head.
    The issue is an issue that too few people are speaking intelligently about.
    I’m very happy that I stumbled across this in my search for
    something concerning this.

  9. I am really inspired with your writing abilities and also
    with the structure to your weblog. Is that this a paid theme or did you modify it your self?
    Anyway stay up the nice quality writing, it’s rare to look
    a great blog like this one these days..

    It is a very hard situation when playing the lottery and never won, or keep winning low fund not up to 100 bucks, i have been a victim of such a tough life, the biggest fund i have ever won was 100 bucks, and i have been playing lottery for almost 12 years now, things suddenly change the moment i came across a secret online, a testimony of a spell caster called dr emu, who help people in any type of lottery numbers, i was not easily convinced, but i decided to give try, now i am a proud lottery winner with the help of dr emu, i won $1,000.0000.00 and i am making this known to every one out there who have been trying all day to win the lottery, believe me this is the only way to win the lottery.

    Contact him on email Em*******@gm***.com
    What’s app +2347012841542

  11. This design is wicked! You most certainly know how to keep a reader
    amused. Between your wit and your videos, I was almost moved
    to start my own blog (well, almost…HaHa!) Wonderful job.
    I really loved what you had to say, and more than that, how you presented it.
    Too cool!

  12. Thank you for some other excellent article. Where else may just anyone get that type of info
    in such a perfect way of writing? I have a presentation next week, and I am at the search
    for such information.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

five × 1 =

Feeling Stuck? Join 10,000+ others for Monday Motivation

Inspiration for your writing (and your life) delivered directly to your inbox every week.

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.
Scroll to Top

My new book is available for pre-order!

Discover the power of (finally) getting unstuck, claiming your clarity, and becoming the person whose life you want to live—all through a simple self-care practice you can build into your daily routine.