Not many people would define divorce as pretty but today’s guest has a different perspective. Marie Mosley is the author of the book called Pretty Divorce, which takes us on a journey through Marie’s life, beginning with several significant family losses and her being a teenage mom to surviving a 25-year toxic relationship that ended in divorce. In this episode, she joins Rosie Zilinskas to share her story after the divorce and how she’s now able to create the life she wants to live, free from the toxicity of her marriage. Marie shares personal stories and gives valuable advice and insights based on her experiences around what women can and should do to start on that path toward healing. Learn more about Marie’s story and be inspired to start changing your life for the better.
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Life After Your Pretty Divorce With Marie Mosley
In this episode, we’re talking to an incredible woman who is not only brave, resilient, and an example to all of us. Marie Mosley is the author of the book called Pretty Divorce, which takes us on a journey through Marie’s life, beginning with several significant family losses from her being a teenage mom to surviving a 25-year toxic relationship that ended in divorce. She overcame the odds while having a career. She has a healthy marriage with 4 beautiful children and 2 grandsons, and is fulfilling her dreams.
Marie is on a mission to help other women experience a pretty divorce. We’re going to be talking about what a pretty divorce is during the episode. The reason why I brought this up is that I know that they’re women that have to work full-time while taking care of their families and are in a toxic relationship. The reason I know that is I was one of those women. I will talk a little bit about that during the episode as well. With that, keep reading.
Marie, thank you so much for being on the show. I am so happy to talk to you. I know that you had a traumatic life, especially growing up and you were a young mom. How about if we start with a little bit of your story?
Thank you, Rosie, for having me. I appreciate it. I did have a traumatic childhood even before my teens, but I’ll start in my preteens. I lost my sister and my niece when I was twelve. It threw me into a whirlwind. By the time I was thirteen, I was pregnant. By the time I was fourteen, I was a mom. I look back at it and go, “Oh my god.” I don’t recommend that to anybody at all.
At the time, my brother was the man of the house because we had lost our dad when we were younger. He had talked to me about abortion and different things like that. We didn’t believe in it. I was one of the young people that said, “I made my bed and I have to lie in it.” I went on to have a baby at fourteen years old, which began the toxicity.
Things weren’t as bad before my daughter was born, but once she was born, her father started to physically abuse me. We did have three other children, but it led to a whole lot of other things like drugs, alcohol, and stuff like that. For 25 years, I stayed with this person. We had two other girls and a son. After a while, by the grace of God, I managed to go back to school and do all those things, which I believe were very intricate in helping me get out of this situation. I had something to fall back on. I wasn’t reliant on that man in that situation. It did help me to hold myself up by the bootstrap, so to speak, to be able to move on.
Our readers know that we are talking primarily to women in the corporate world. I want to showcase, first of all, the bravery that you had and the resiliency that you had going throughout your life. Being a young mom at 14 years old, I cannot even imagine and then you went on to have 3 other children. You stayed in this abusive relationship for so long.
One of the reasons why it’s so important to have this conversation is because if women don’t have the education to get a job and be able to support themselves, they may get stuck in a situation where they don’t know where to go or whom to turn to because of what life throws at you. It could be a divorce, pregnancy, health issues, or a variety of things. That’s why here, we advocate so much education and being able to advance in your corporate career. A lot of us have children that we need to take care of. You went on to school. Tell me what degrees you get.
I have a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, a Master’s degree in Guidance and Counseling, and a Master’s in Educational Leadership. I didn’t complete a Mental Health degree, but I was very close to finishing the Master’s in that as well.
That’s huge. That’s one of the points that I wanted to bring up because even though you had all that trauma and trials and tribulations in life, you made it a point to go and obtain a career. You worked in schools as a school counselor, and you had to have your Master’s at that school. That is incredible. Congratulations on all that.
One of the reasons why we’re talking here is because many women are working in the corporate world and they are stuck in this marriage that is not serving them well. They’re hemming and hoeing on, “Should I stay? Should I go? What do I do?” You have a book that’s called Pretty Divorce. I wanted to talk about your book. Tell me a little bit about it. You had a 25-year relationship. You divorced that individual but what were the steps that led you to write this book?
Rosie, a lot of what you said is what led me to write the book. Like most of your readers probably are stuck, I was stuck for a long time. I didn’t want women to stay stuck because we don’t have to. I wanted to tell my story so that women can see it. Twenty-five years is a long time. Four kids is a long time but as women, we make all of those excuses and concessions about why we should stay but we need to start looking at the list of why we should go.
I don’t want to say especially because I feel like this about all women. We worked hard, went to school, go to work, work in long hours, come into the home being mothers and have to put all of that toxicity on top of it and any type of abuse, verbally, physically and mentally. Any type of abuse is not okay. That’s why I wrote the book because there are thousands, if not millions of women out there who find themselves in these situations. They feel like they’ve spent so many years saying, “How do I start over?” That’s the biggest thing.
We all want companionship but we want healthy and good companionship. Women go through this thing, “Who’s going to want me when I had four children?” I went through that. I’m like, “I would be alone. I have four kids to raise.” All of that is our delusion. It is not the truth. We lie to ourselves and that keeps us stuck in these relationships. We do not realize that there is a big, huge world out there waiting for us where we can find our peace, some stability and eventually find somebody that does love us. That’s why I wrote the book because I saw all the possibilities and the opportunity that came my way once I got myself out of that situation and I wanted to share it.
You said a lot of amazing things there. The first question that I have is divorce is not pretty, Marie. I can tell you that firsthand because I went through a divorce myself when I was 40 years old. My divorce was over 3 years long but only 5% of divorces go to trial. I was one of the lucky ones that I went to trial. During that time, you go to court. After the court date, you have petitions and all the things. My question to you is why the title, Pretty Divorce?
Rosie, when I met you, I fell in love with you. You’re beautiful. You’re here doing your show. You’re living a life that makes you happy. That’s what’s pretty about the divorce we had. It’s the outcome. Another part of what I was speaking about is so many women say they’re stuck. They stay stuck even if they get a divorce. They’re angry and bitter. They don’t find that resolve to move on, feel good about themselves and understand that this is an opportunity to get the life that they want.
So many women stay stuck even if they get a divorce. They don't find that resolve to move on and feel good about themselves and understand that this is an opportunity to get the life that they really want. – Marie Mosley Click To Tweet
That is music to my ears. I will tell you that in the middle of my divorce, I went to this conference. It’s a three-day intensive therapy called Landmark Education. It was fantastic because before I went to Landmark Education, this was probably 2007 for me and that’s when I started delving into personal development, I was afraid of losing my kids. I was working full-time. He was working part-time and staying home with the kids at the time. I went to Landmark Education. That conference opened up my mind to think, “Worst case scenario is we get divorced and my ex-husband will gain custody of my kids.” My kids were 5 and 7 at the time.
I shifted my mindset to the way you said, “This is my life. I’m going to make the best of it.” I don’t get afraid anymore every time I go to the courthouse. Ultimately, we ended up going to trial. He didn’t show up to the trial and I ended up getting full custody of my kids. Marie, to your point, that’s when I felt that my life started over again. I’m free. I felt happy. I was a whole new person once I was able to get through all that. I understand what you mean by pretty divorce. I love the title.
Thank you. I talk about everything you said in the book. The courthouse used to be like a dungeon to me. I hated going to court. It felt like I was outside of my life like, “Why am I here? How did I end up here?” We have to take those steps and be courageous about what’s best for us. We have to go after what is best for us. I’m not telling people to run out and get divorced. Some things can be worked out. Maybe some people go to family counseling but everybody needs to find out where they are.
If you do need a divorce, you can have it to be pretty. You said the keyword, which is mindset. We know and society tells us. We watch celebrities have these messy divorces. They fight over everything. Everybody walks with that preconceived notion but we must shift our mindset and see it as something good for us and an open door for us to do something different with our lives and create the things that we want. Most of the time when we’re in a divorce or those relationships, you feel like, “I’m living someone else’s life. What’s happening to me? This is not what I planned for my life and my future,” especially if it’s a toxic relationship.
Women don’t get to see that it’s so much waiting on the other side of it and so much peace. There’s nothing like peace of mind. A pretty divorce for each individual is something different. You’re doing a show. I wrote a book. They might need to have peace of mind. People, you could create whatever you want. As long as it’s good and healthy for you, then that’s where the pretty divorce comes in. It’s a concept that as I was writing the book, I started to realize.
I did drink a lot during that relationship. I did drugs. I don’t do any of that stuff. I don’t do any of the copings like, “I need to cope and make it through this.” You can have a pretty divorce from negative behavior, your negative mindset, alcohol and from things that do not serve you. The second meaning of divorce is separating yourself from something else. That’s it. Separate yourself from the things that don’t mean you any good. I don’t think as human beings, we’re supposed to be living in a perpetual state of toxicity or suffering. It’s not good for our minds and health.
I want women to come out of that place, experience life and enjoy their life. We only get one. I don’t want any woman to sit around and waste. Luckily, I started that relationship at 13 and ended it at 38. I still have some time ahead of me to do some things. Some women stay in that stuff in their 60s or 70s, and then they’re like, “How do I start over?”
Nevertheless, they can still start over at whatever age. I have heard of couples that have been married for 40 years and then they get a divorce. I’m like, “How long did it take you to get there?” I want to go back to a couple of things. You have 3 girls and 1 boy. I want to talk about your daughters and your relationship. When I got divorced, my daughter was little. She didn’t know what was going on but the fact that you were an example to your daughters and you knew that you were doing drugs and alcohol and that was all something that you wanted to stop, at what point did you think to yourself, “Enough is enough. I need to change my life, not only for me but for my daughters and my son too?” You were an example to them. Let’s talk a little bit about that.
My dad died when I was little. A lot of the reason I stayed in that relationship is that I didn’t want my daughter to grow up without a father. That was the onset of it. I was adding other children into the situation and I was like, “I don’t want them to go through emotional things that I went through, feelings and the hurt of not having a father growing up, feeling abandoned,” and different things that kids go through when a parent is not around.
Another thing we do is stay thinking we’re doing the right thing for the kids when they’re being damaged and having trauma because they’re living in this environment with these two people that shouldn’t be together anymore. When I finally left, I made it a priority to take my kids on the journey of healing. I put that in my book for mothers. It created some wonderful bonds between me, each one of my children and then us as a whole. I had to dive into it.
That was the benefit of when I did my Psychology degree and stuff. I knew these things were a part of the process and this would affect trauma and divorce in kids. I made it a priority and every mother should. If you took your child through this journey with you through the toxicity or the failed marriage and the divorce, it is our responsibility to take them with us on a healing journey.
As a counselor, I would see a lot of kids that are like, “My mom is not into me. She’s not paying me attention.” I used everything that I knew from work. What do the kids cry about? What is breaking their heart? It helped me to put it into my life. I did a lot of work with my kids. All of my kids were always into extracurricular activities but at that time, I made it more of a point to see that my son had good coaches. I explained to them the things that I was going through and he was going through. They helped a lot. I built my support system for my son, to be honest with you.
I had my mom but it was just me and my mom. She needed some men around. I eventually got married again. My husband was a good support but I did put a lot into my kids to make sure that they were not going forward damaged because of my behavior and being with their father. It’s very important that mothers make sure that kids go through recovery, healing or whatever you want to call it. Go to any type of self-care or anything that’s going to help build them up.
It's very important that mothers make sure their kids go through recovery, healing, or whatever you want to call it. – Marie Mosley Click To Tweet
My son is into games. Don’t get me wrong. He loves his game, but I didn’t want to let that be the only thing he had or TV. I made sure to get him involved in stuff that gave him leadership skills. The home team was a little bit skewed so I want him to be a part of a team and learn how to work together with people. It worked. I’m very proud of my kids. They’re doing good. A lot of parents don’t have the knowledge that I have. If I write a book, it can help. They can see the things that I did and maybe try them for themselves.
I want to ask you another question. Were you fully cognizant of the fact that you were in an abusive relationship while you were going through it?
I believe that when you are in those relationships, you try to normalize it but act like, “This is how we communicate or operate with each other.” It’s ridiculous. I was cognizant of it. After a while, it wasn’t okay and normal anymore. It wasn’t something that I wanted to be a part of. I grew up in the projects in The Bronx, not for nothing. You see a lot of relationships that are like that. My dad was gone so I had my mom, my sisters and my brothers.
My dad died when I was five so I didn’t get to see him and mommy together. He was sick for my earliest memories of him. I didn’t get to see how men and women communicate with each other in a healthy way and things of that nature. A lot of my environment played a part. After a while, we moved to a nicer place and things were a little more settled. You get to start seeing, “This is not okay.”
What I’m telling you here is not everybody doesn’t live that, but I thank God I was cognizant of it. I’ll take ownership of my whole part of it. I even knew better before I got pregnant, believe it or not. I knew it was not something I wanted to do. I allowed peer pressure too, but I knew I didn’t want to. I said no quite a few times before, “I’m thirteen. No. I’m not ready for that. I don’t want to do it.” I have to be honest about that.
You go past the things you know. Another thing I talk about in the book is the decisions you make. That one night, my first time, that one decision changed my life for 25 years. I have four beautiful children but all of what came with it was based on one bad decision. We have to think of the decisions we’re making and the company we’re keeping.
The reason why I asked that question is that I was only married for about nine years. I’m glad that you said that when you’re in that relationship, sometimes you normalize your life. I was also in an abusive relationship but it was more mental and fear-induced because things would get thrown. When I finally had enough, went to an attorney, said I want a divorce and explained everything, they said to me, “You’re a classic example of a domestic violence abuse victim.”
I sat in front of the attorney and was like, “What are you talking about? I am a working professional. How can I be a domestic violence abuse victim?” To be honest with you, I was shocked. I normalized my relationship and even afterwards, my family was like, “Why didn’t you tell us?” I’m like, “It’s not that I didn’t tell you because I was hiding it. I wasn’t aware that’s what it was.” I knew that he had a bad temper.
Before we got married, there were some red flags. I was so in love with him that I was like, “We’ll figure it out and go through it.” His temperament kept changing for the worst as time went down and I was like, “This is not what I signed up for,” to your point. You can only take so much until one day you’re like, “Enough is enough. I didn’t sign up for this. I’m done.”
Many women do not think they’re in a domestic violence situation. If it’s not physical, then it’s not but no. I’m telling you, there are emotional abuse, mental abuse and living in fear. Do you know what that type of stress is putting onto your body? Also, for the kids to be like, “Is he going to hit me? Is he going to hit mommy?” It’s all abuse in some form but depending on where you are, certain people won’t see it as that.
So many women do not think they're in a domestic violence situation if it's not physical. – Marie Mosley Click To Tweet
Here’s another thing that is a red flag. We, women, are so head over heels that we’re like, “He’s going to be okay. I’ll fix him. He’ll be fine. We’re in love.” It’s like Tina Turner’s What’s Love Got to Do with It. We have to know that we don’t have to. This is our lives and mental well-being. If there are children involved, it’s their mental well-being and lives. We have to know the person that we are marrying, especially marriage. We’re not talking about dating. I could block you.
We’re talking about we live with this person in a house and we have to have constant contact with them. We have to know that we are putting ourselves into the right situations. Too many of us women do this all the time. We ignore the flags and then afterwards, we go, “I remember when he slammed that thing at the restaurant. He did all these things but it’s okay. We live and learn.” As long as we have the wherewithal to get ourselves out of it, my concern is for the women that do not.
You got divorced when you were 38, so you were working. One of the challenges that I had when I was going through my divorce is that I needed to continue to move up the corporate ladder because I had these two little kids that I needed to take care of. You had four. Did you manage to exit your marriage while continuing to work and take care of four little kids?
Deisha would have been 24 at the time. Remember, she was born when I was fourteen. Tela was 17 or 18. All I had were Danielle and Wayne. They were the youngest two. My son was about ten years old and my mom was alive. She was such a sweetheart. She helped me to raise my kids. I am a guidance counselor. I hear horrific things so I walk around with this as a worry. I don’t want to leave my kids all over the place here.
I have heard some horror stories from children about people that their mom has left them with or their uncle. There were different sides. To be able to leave my children with my mother was a blessing. That helped me to move around the way I needed to move around to go back to school and get more education. I always had someone that was there. I knew the kids were safe, they were going to eat and be taken care of.
At one point, I worked all day and then went to school. I wouldn’t get home until 11:00 to know that the kids were going to be coming in from school and someone gave me a piece of mind. I know that some of our readers might not have that but that’s why they have to figure out what their resources are. I talk about that in the book as well. What are your resources? Figure out who can help you through this transition. Where can you find some after-school care? A lot of the schools have after-school programs and a bunch of different things that can help a mom if she’s in some transition to make sure her kids are okay and taken care of.
I was fortunate enough that I had both my parents. I moved in with my parents right when I left and then I lived with them for a little while. I was able to rent a house and then buy a house eventually but I also have three sisters and a brother. They all help me throughout time. Family is important. If people don’t have family, there are other resources that they can go to. Even if you’re not able to pay for resources, you can always maybe swap time with another mom. You can take care of her kids and she can take care of your kids. There are different ways to be able to transition from this married, not-so-happy life to divorce with a pretty life.
With some of my son’s football and extracurricular activities, a lot of organizations offer scholarships for single moms that might not have the funds to put in. They give you discounts. Sometimes when we are going through this, we’re embarrassed and ashamed. You have to be able to say, “This is the help that I need.” You have to go to the places that have that help. No shame, no embarrassment. That’s another thing I put in the book.
We are a sisterhood of women. Millions of us have gone through this. When it’s you, you feel isolated and ashamed. Depending on how many masks and facades you have to wear, you sure don’t want to go tell people that this is what’s been going on behind closed doors. You have to get past that or you’re going to stay isolated.
We have to be able to go and say, “Listen, I need help. Is there some way that I can watch your daughter while you watch mine? What days are you working?” Moms can work together. My girlfriend was a part of my support system. I watch her daughter. She watches mine. There are different things but you have to be resourceful. We cannot stay in a silo by ourselves and suffer in silence anymore.
As far as the shame, I can relate to that because I have a couple of friends of mine that I started working with. They’re both still married to their significant spouses. Every time we get together and not anymore because I’m happily remarried now but before that, it was like, “Why me? Why did I do wrong? What was wrong with me that I was one of the ones that got divorced?” Once I got to the point where I accepted my life and was happy and grateful, I can accept things for whatever reason they happened.
When you accepted it, that opened the door for you to have a happy marriage.
We got married years ago. My daughter was 15 at the time and my son was 17. I thought that things were going to be super easy because my kids were older but they weren’t. It’s just growing pains, getting to know each other and all that good stuff. Thank goodness we’re all good. We’re going to go celebrate my son’s birthday later on. You have to count your blessings and look at the good side of whatever life is for you, whether you’re healthy, sick, single, married or divorced.
Whatever the situation is, there’s always something that you can be grateful for. When you live in that grateful space, life is more beautiful. You talk about how to achieve your dreams after a toxic relationship. That’s what we’ve been talking about. You’re also talking about boundaries and forgiveness. When you’re talking about boundaries and forgiveness, forgiving who?
One, forgiving yourself. I beat myself up a lot about, “Why did I stay? I knew better. I had a whole family that supports me.” I didn’t tell my family a lot of the stuff that was going on either so I had to forgive myself. I had to forgive him. I believe that when I forgave him, things became a lot better for me. I used to be angry about it. I was very bitter about, “This is my life. I wasted my life. This happened to me.” I stopped thinking about, “This is happening to me.” I put all of that stuff away. It hinders and holds. It’s like chains of weight around your neck.
For me, a part of my process was to forgive all of those things. I had to think about the fact that when we got together, he was sixteen years old. He didn’t have the greatest role models around him. I thought about his life and his family. It’s a lot of things. Find ways to forgive it. Not to justify it or make excuses for it but for me to let go of all of that negativity that felt like it was weight. I had to forgive. I had to forgive myself as well.
I could have been upset with my family. “You weren’t watching me.” We come up with all stuff to point fingers, blame and figure out who’s fault it this. I realize my part and what parts I played. I had to forgive myself as well and it was freeing for me. That’s why I talk about forgiveness and boundaries. We need boundaries in all of our relationships, not just our marriages. The reason why I talked about boundaries is that every time I was doing well, my ex would come back. I tried to get out several times.
I separated quite a few times. He’d find his way back and then do something worse to me. I had to start the process all over again. Once I put some boundaries in place, stuck to my guns and refused to turn back is when I saw the most progress. It was like, “I’m moving.” I wanted to accept it back and try again. “With the kids, you come up with all of this stuff but enough is enough. I’ve given you several chances to get this thing right. It’s wasting more of my time.”
Kudos to you, Marie. I was always the type of person that once I broke up with a relationship, I’m like, “Nope. Done.” I broke up for a reason. The main reason why people keep on going back is people don’t like to be alone. You’re trying to fix your marriage for your kids or think it’s for your kids. All that makes a lot of sense. We’re almost towards the end here. You talked about certain character traits that could help you get through almost anything. Can you talk about that? We’ve already been talking for quite a while but when you talk about character traits, what are you referring to?
I want to put this in there about the forgiveness piece. Forgiveness does not mean I have to have a relationship with the person. It means I have the freedom from my being and their being so that I can progress and not be held to the trauma and the past of what happened. I believe that with a lot of the character traits that we need, we need to be courageous and sometimes selfish, not in a dogmatic way but we do have to consider ourselves.
We need to be selfish sometimes, not in a dogmatic way, but we do have to consider ourselves. We can't always consider everything outside of us before ourselves because if we're no good, we are no good to anybody. – Marie Mosley Click To Tweet
We can’t always consider everything outside of us before we consider ourselves because if we’re no good, we’re no good to anybody. Even when we say, “We’re doing this for the kids,” but their mother is a fanatic. She’s angry all the time. She’s upset. She’s snapping at them. You’re not doing anything for the kids. You got to be a little bit selfish in that way. Be courageous. Stand up for yourself. You have to be able to know what you want. If it doesn’t matter up to what you want, then you have to let it go.
It’s a bunch of different things but those are the things that took for me to be able to move on, for me to be courageous, to finally start thinking about myself, what it was doing to me and what it was making me do to my children. No one’s good in that situation. We think we are. We’re like, “We go to work.” They have something called a functional addict. You think you are okay because you go to work, pay your bills and the kids are eating but that’s not all there is to it. Those are a couple of them.
The reason why we’re having the conversation is that there could be women out there that are working full-time and thinking to themselves that they’re in a toxic relationship and a toxic relationship that they’re trying to exit. They then still have to continue to work. A lot of the conversations that we had is ways for you to continue to work but you’re still exiting that relationship and have a pretty divorce for a fulfilling life. This is all incredible information.
When I was going through my divorce and even after that, I would always purchase a gift for my kids to take to their dad for Christmas and his birthday. People would be like, “Why are you doing that? You shouldn’t be doing that.” I’m like, “I’m not doing it for me or him. I’m doing it for my kids so that my kids can have a gift to bring to their dad on his birthday and Christmas.”
It has nothing to do with him. It has everything to do with giving my kids that ability to still have some gift to give to their father. I was always good at not being angry and hanging on to toxicity once we separated. I don’t wish him ill or anything. He’s still the father of my children so I was trying to collaborate. He didn’t want to but I did it for my kids. I always walked the tightrope in that respect as far as people would criticize me or judge me for doing that but I always felt that walking the high road was always better for my children.
Let me tell you a little bit about what you said. This is what I say in the book about forgiveness. It takes you being mature in saying, “All of this is not worth me holding onto.” It’s doing damage to you on the inside. I did the same thing. I’d send pictures of milestones and the first days of school. I pushed my children to continue to have a relationship with their dad. His new wife and he didn’t want it. She made sure to do whatever she could to get in between it and make sure it didn’t happen.
After a while, you let go, but you’ve done your due diligence. You freed your heart so that it can be open to being loved again and for you to love again. It’s okay as long as you did your part. I agree with you. I would get the same thing. It’s all right. I understand what I’m doing. I’m freeing myself and helping my kids to not grow up being bitter people, holding grudges and things like that but it’s okay. It doesn’t have to be egregious, but some people are not on the same maturity level as you are so you accept it and keep moving. You get to have this beautiful smile on your face.
Marie, this has been an incredible conversation. Thank you so much. You’ve already given us a lot of great information, but do you have two actionable tips that you can give the readers to be able to manage toxic relationships while still working and trying to move up the corporate ladder?
Honestly, I feel like I don’t want to help people manage toxic relationships. If I understand that this is toxic and it is not serving me or I’m not well in this, I need them to start figuring out a way to make the exit. Talk to a therapist or regular doctor if you have to. People have no clue how much your physician can direct you. When you’re honest with them and tell them what you’re going through, they have a lot to offer.
They can tell you, “You need to go talk to a therapist or a social worker. We have social workers at the facility,” whatever it is. They need to talk to somebody that has an objective interest or their best interest at heart. Talk to somebody about how you can get out of it and what you want to do. You have to start making those decisions. “Do I want to be out of this?” Some people get comfortable. They normalize it and learn to function in it. It then becomes their thing.
I would not be managing the toxic relationship. I’d be figuring out, “How am I going to make my exit?” I have to move out with my mom. I’m going to have to go and live with my mom for a little while, and it’s okay. If you have to go live with a friend so that you can get in peace of mind and some peace and you’re not going through abuse or whatever’s going on there that makes the relationship toxic, that’s the first step. Start figuring out how you are able to make it.
Number two, once you decide you want to make that exit, then figure out what your resources are, “Do I have money saved?” I moved from New York to get away from my ex-husband. He came following me to Florida. I fell for it. We got a house together, and then I had to move back. You have to figure out your plan. Start sketching out your plan and the resources you have to make that plan come to fruition.
My obstetrician is the one that finally told me, “You need to leave this marriage because you’re in a terrible marriage.” To your point, your medical doctor or OB-GYN. I will be thankful to Dr. Maria forever because she was the one that saw what was happening in my life and she was the catalyst of I have to do something. That’s fantastic too.
Do you want to hear something funny? That’s in my book. It was my GYN that helped me with some information like, “This is not okay for you.”
We were meant to meet, Marie.
They will help you and get you some guidance. They get to know you. They know what’s the matter. “Are you okay?”
My obstetrician delivered my son years ago. She’s a godsend. Marie, this was an incredible conversation. Thank you so much for appearing. Any final words?
Women, I want to say that we are beautiful, every one of us. I love being a woman. I love women. We’re great and powerful. Sometimes we give our power away to people that don’t deserve it. We give everything that we have, and it’s okay. Most of us have done that, and we have to know when it’s time for us to pick up the pieces of our life and put them back together the way we see fit, and not live the life somebody else wants for us, but go after the one we want for ourselves. I wish everybody the strength to be able to do it.
Thank you very much, Marie. I appreciate you coming on.
I must say that that was a much heavier conversation than we normally have on the show, although I do believe it is a worthwhile conversation because there are women out there working full-time and are in either a toxic or an abusive relationship, and they don’t know what to do. I can tell you that I know that because I was one of them, and Marie was one of them as well.
Marie did say that we, women, are beautiful and powerful. Sometimes, we give away our power and it is up to us to be able to reclaim that power. Marie’s first tip is you need to decide what you want to do first. If you don’t know what you want to do, you can always talk to your medical doctor, or in Marie’s case and my case, your OB-GYN.
Your primary care physicians are the people that know you the very best, so talk to them. They’re probably going to give you some advice to talk to a therapist or a social worker. Tip number two is that once you decide to make your exit, figure out what your resources are. Do you have a family to stay with? Do you have money saved up? Those were fantastic tips. This was a heavier conversation, but now more than ever, I want you to remember to be brave, be bold and take action.
- Pretty Divorce
About Marie Mosley
Marie Mosley is the author of pretty divorce. The book pretty divorce takes us on a journey through Marie’s life. Beginning with several significant family losses, to her being a teenage mom, to her survival of a twenty-five-year toxic relationship that ended in divorce, to her overcoming the odds, having a career, a healthy marriage, four beautiful children, two handsome grandsons, becoming an author, and fulling her dreams. Marie is now on a mission to help other women experience a pretty divorce.