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How Divorce Changes the Way You View Love

Love is such a dynamic word — one that changes its meaning based on time and experience — and no one knows this better than a divorcee. When you’re married the first time, you tend to have an idealized version of what the word means. You think it means butterflies and passion and a never-ending “honeymoon phase.” But when you’ve been divorced, you know the work that goes in to it, and you also know the fleeting uneasiness that comes with a new relationship. In essence, your divorce changes the way that you view love. Here’s what it reveals.

1. Love goes from a feeling to an action. 

To be fair, marriages that stand the test of time learn this same lesson. You don’t just “love” your partner with words. You love them through actions. You aren’t “in love”; you practice love. You know that when you stop doing so, that love starts to wither and fade.

2. Love goes from eternal to conditional. 

Even if you’re able to pick up the pieces and move on with life, finding someone that you connect with on a deeper level, you understand that love is more conditional than you were initially comfortable admitting. You know that even though you can love someone with all your heart and show them that every day, they can wake up one morning and say they don’t love you back, and all that love you thought would last forever comes crashing down. While that sounds terrible on the surface, it actually teaches you a valuable and much-needed lesson. You have to learn to love yourself before you can expect someone else to do the same. And if they ever stop loving you, then at least you know you’re a good person with value.

3. Love still makes you nervous but for different reasons than before your first marriage. 

We mentioned the butterflies and passion above. What we meant was that feeling of uncontrollable nervousness that shows up any time you’re around that special someone. Once you’ve been through the divorce fire, however, you start to get nervous around love for another reason. The realization that there is so much at stake with no guaranteed reward. You have to rely on faith more than every before, and that can be difficult when it’s burned you.

How did, or how has, your outlook changed since getting a divorce? Sound off in the comments section.

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