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Everybody Knows Your First Marriage Doesn't Count

No one jokes around about getting married for the second time more than I do. While I have no plans to end my marriage, the thought of a wedding and marriage do-over has its perks.

You know how when you have your first baby you obsess over everything, worry yourself into oblivion, and make a hundred million mistakes? By the time that second baby comes you’ve learned to take a logical rather than emotional approach parenting. Well, first marriages are kind of like first babies. I have no doubt a little marital practice would serve a second marriage well.

I was talking to a divorced friend who recently moved in with her fiancé. She glowed at the very mention of her upcoming nuptials with an aura so bright that I actually considered crashing her bridal party. “I can’t wait to be married again! I want this wedding and this marriage to be completely different from my last,” she said, “Besides, everybody knows your first marriage doesn’t really count anyway.”

Wait, what? Sure, I’ve uttered that very phrase a few times myself, but I was kidding. It was overwhelmingly clear that she wasn’t. And who is this “everybody” anyway?

“Wait,” I said, “I’ve only been married once, are you telling me that my marriage doesn’t count?”

“Well no, yours counts because you’re still married. For people who stay married, the first marriage totally counts,” she ahem, clarified.

I changed the subject to hilarious wedding cake toppers or something because confrontation doesn’t look good on me. After a quick emotional inventory, I revoking my self-imposed bridesmaid offering and pondered the audacity of her convenient logic.

Despite the fact that divorce rates are staggering, to deny a marriage is to deny a large part of yourself.

I don’t care if you hate your ex-spouse or consider your first marriage to be an epic failure, its chapter in your life’s story held purpose, ultimately bringing you to where you are today. Maybe we shouldn’t deny a first failed marriage, for it certainly taught painful lessons about love, tenacity of character, and the importance of self-love.

A first marriage isn’t a hangnail or inconvenient part of one’s history; love lost is always, always lesson learned.

Whether it be mistake or the smartest decision you’ve ever made, first marriages count.

What do you think, do first marriages count?

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