A warning against marrying over pregnancy

THEY were young, in love - or at least, thought so - and expecting a baby.

Evelyn and her husband wed when they were 19 and 21 but split 12 years later.

"I got married because I was pregnant. That was what you did then," Evelyn said.

"I think it's great that people don't get married when they're young any more because they're expecting a baby.

"Even if you are pregnant and have a baby, don't get married and tied up in a relationship that you're not happy in."

Evelyn said she had persisted in the marriage, even though it had been on the wane, before making the decision to leave.

"I believed that I couldn't get out of it, and I couldn't do it on my own. I didn't have the self-esteem and the confidence."

In hindsight, Evelyn, who did not want to be identified, believes she and her now ex-husband started with different values and grew apart.

"I think the things that were important to each of us were really quite different. He was happy just to cruise along and take each day as it comes and not worry about tomorrow.

"He wasn't very aspirational.

"He didn't worry about getting a secure job even though he had a family to support.

"We were both students but once our son started school, I went and got a job and he stayed home to look after our son and study part-time. I wanted to work and wanted to get ahead a bit."

The couple were supposed to be renovating a home but Evelyn felt little was getting done while she was at work to pay the bills and a distance grew between them, punctuated by occasional arguments.

Evelyn's unhappiness at home began to invade her being.

"I was starting to become this person that I didn't like and didn't want to be," she said. "I was becoming a really horrible person.

"I saw my partner as being the cause of most of my ills and problems. I was becoming really negative in the relationship.

"And then I thought, 'Hang on, what am I doing? I'm not facing up to the fact that I don't want to be in this relationship and it's time to leave."

Evelyn said her husband never would have left and did not want to call it quits but she knew it was time. Counselling had not been an option because "there was nothing left to save".

Topics:  children generation marriage pregnancy

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