I Was Afraid to Leave My Marriage

Then I got this one piece of advice

Alison Jacobson
Being Known
Published in
4 min readJul 1, 2021

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Image: Canva

For far too long I was profoundly unhappy in my marriage. It seemed as if I was in tears on a daily basis. The irony was that with the exception of my mom and my cousin, everyone thought I had a great marriage. It’s not that I was necessarily faking it and pretending everything was great it’s just that I believed everyone had their own problems and wouldn’t want to hear about mine.

I wish I could reach back and hug the younger, sad version of myself and tell her that it would be OK, that life would get better. Because at that time I felt trapped and alone.

This wasn’t a case where I was being physically abused and feared leaving.

The cage I was trapped in was of my own making, I just didn’t realize the door was unlocked the entire time and I had the choice to leave.

I look back now and realize that if I had someone to talk to, if I had shared how profoundly sad I was and found someone to encourage me, life could have gotten better so much quicker.

There were three main reasons I chose to stay in my marriage as long as I did.

The greatest gift from my marriage was my four children and for this reason, I will never regret our union. Unfortunately, our first son Connor died from Sudden Unexpected Infant Death in 1997. Contrary to what people might assume, his death is not what led to the end of our marriage. In fact, we were closer in our grief than perhaps at any other time. It was the thought of Connor that made me stay. I had it in my head that to end the marriage would sever the final tie I had to my baby. No one other than my husband would ever fully understand the profound grief of his death.

I stayed to keep Connor’s memory alive.

I was too busy to get a divorce. Despite how unhappy I was personally, my business was growing rapidly. I was frequently traveling to make TV appearances, speak at conferences and meet with clients. I was also meeting with the school and taking my son to numerous doctors and therapists to figure out how best to help him. To say my plate was full was an…

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Alison Jacobson
Being Known

Living my best life in midlife and helping other women do the same. Part spirituality/part practicality. alison-jacobson.com