Originally Posted by FutureDays
So my question is this, if you feel that your marriage isn't doing anything for you, and you truly find yourself miserable in your marriage, and you aren't cheating or otherwise committing adultery, is it okay to make the decision to divorce to pursue a life with someone that will add to your happiness and growth?

FD, the solution to a bad marriage is to work to turn it around, not to abandon the marriage so you can screw up another relationship. It is like buying a house and never making any repairs. Pretty soon the house falls apart from neglect. So is the problem a "bad house" or is the problem that the buyer is lazy and did nothing to maintain the house? The problem is not the house, but the neglectful owner. Its always easier to cop out and say "I married the wrong person!!" But the reasons are almost always a neglectful buyer.

A good marriage doesnt' just happen by magic anymore than a well maintained house just happens by magic. It is not magic.

Buying another house after you have neglected the first house is not the solution because the buyer will just neglect the next house.

The solution is to stop neglecting the house, not to abandon the house and buy another one to neglect.

Dr. Harley explains this very well in Buyers, Renters and Freeloaders:

Freeloader is unwilling to put much effort into the care of his or her partner in a romantic relationship. He or she does only what comes naturally and expects only what comes naturally. It's like a person who tries to live in a house without paying rent or doing anything to improve it unless the person is in the mood to do so.

Renter is willing to provide limited care as long as it's in his or her best interest. The romantic relationship is considered tentative, so the care is viewed as short-term. It's like a person who rents a house and is willing to stay as long as the conditions seem fair, or until he or she finds something better. The person is willing to pay reasonable rent and keep the house clean but is not willing to make repairs or improvements. It's the landlord's job to keep the place attractive enough for the renter to stay and continue paying rent.

Buyer is willing to demonstrate an extraordinary sense of care by making permanent changes in his or her own behavior and lifestyle to make the romantic relationship mutually fulfilling. Solutions to problems are long-term solutions and must work well for both partners because the romantic relationship is viewed as exclusive and permanent. It's like a person who buys a house for life with a willingness to make repairs that accomodate changing needs, painting the walls, installing new carpet, replacing the roof, and even doing some remodeling so that it can be comfortable and useful.

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101