People Are Revealing The Exact Moment They Realized They Needed To End Their Marriage, And What Happened After That

Since it's common for married couples to get divorced, we wanted to know why people decided to split from their spouses for good. That's why we asked the BuzzFeed Community to share "the smallest or biggest reason that made you realize it was time to end your marriage." Here's what they had to say:

1."The only thing he did for my 40th birthday was gift me a green sweater. I hate the color green. I live in Arizona, and my birthday is in the spring. I couldn’t even wear the sweater for at least six months. What made it worse is that I literally asked him to make this birthday special because he has failed on my birthday before. My sister flew in from out of town, and my mom threw me a surprise party — all of which he knew nothing about because he never called her after the many times I’ve heard her say to him: 'Call me so we can talk about the big birthday coming up.'"

Close up of a green sweater

—Anonymous, 41, Arizona

Anna Efetova / Via Getty Images

2."I had a pregnancy scare, and he told me he couldn’t raise a kid but 'that was ok because his mom would help me raise it.' We’d been married six years, and I just couldn’t be chained to this selfish, self-centered man. The pregnancy test was negative, and I told him shortly after that we were done. I did end up paying for spousal support for three years, but I saw it as paying for my freedom, and it was worth every penny. I’m now married to a supportive partner, and we have a 2-year-old. My ex now lives with his parents."

—Anonymous, 34, Texas

3."Among other things, the final straw was when I asked him to do the dishes. I then cleaned our whole home for eight hours, only to find once I was done, the dirty dishes were still in the sink. He played video games the whole day while I cleaned everything and only asked for one small task to be done. There, of course, were many things that led to the moment, but when I saw that sink still full after everything I did that day, I said to myself, 'I cannot do this anymore.' I left that night."


4."He did not fairly contribute financially and refused to prioritize our financial future. He tried (unsuccessfully) to gaslight me during arguments he initiated. He was NEVER wrong. It was ALWAYS my fault. He would often shift arguments so we only focused on something I allegedly did or said — the arguments were never anything about him. He made big conclusive statements about me and then shut down the discussion when I tried to respond or defend myself. I knew I was done in December 2019 when I couldn’t sleep after yet another fight where I was the only one wrong. I suddenly had that stark clarity that only comes at 3 a.m.: 'I want out of this marriage. I do not want to live like this anymore.' I was getting up the courage and making plans to leave when the pandemic hit. Three more years flew by while I shoved my feelings down and just tried to live my life."

A man working on laptop

5."He went away for work for three weeks and extended his trip to go paragliding while I was on crutches with a sprained ankle and paying for dog walkers. I realized I didn't miss him because I'd been lonely with him for years now after he checked out and started doing his own thing. I got used to being alone. It hit me that being alone is better than being with someone that makes you feel alone. I had him move out a week after he came back from his trip."


6."He was a teacher and was telling me about his day. He proceeded to describe a HIGH SCHOOL GIRL as hot. I didn’t really care that he thought another girl was hot, but the fact that she was probably around 16 ended it for me. We also had a 13-year-old daughter at the time. For the record, there had been many issues before this incident, but this really was the last straw. I am now happily married to the love of my life!"

—Anonymous,  48, Pennsylvania

7."I knew it was over when he had an emotional long-distance affair with a friend of ours. But he blocked her, and we decided to keep trying. Then later that year, he kept asking for threesomes or being poly. By that point, I knew. But I did it, and he was upset that I got more romantic attention than him. I got a taste of what it was like to not be shamed or walk on eggshells when I would with my other partner. After a few months of super toxic fighting, gaslighting, and straight-up cheating, I finally pulled the plug."

a couple not talking on the couch

8."When my ex-husband, who insisted he should be taking care of paying the bills, got us evicted from our apartment. He told me he found a place to say...for himself. I was on my own with no car or money because he blew it all. I was on my own with just the two bags of clothes and toiletries I could carry. Luckily, I had a great group of friends who helped me get all my stuff later and let me stay with them."

—Anonymous, 43, Missouri

9."I have come to realize I do not want to take care of him once we get older. The 'for better or worse' part isn't happening. I don't love him, and I am not in love with him. When you know, you just know. We married young, and we were both naive. I long to be free from him."

a person taking off their wedding ring

—Anonymous, 51, New York

Jason Dean / Via Getty Images

10."I'm contemplating a divorce from my husband now. Not because I don't love him — I do with all of my heart — but rather because he's become lazy and indifferent and doesn't act like a partner. He treats our children terribly, and they're fearful of him, he gets drunk and says mean things, and acts like I don't exist anymore. At this point, it's like having a third child that's a big old man-child. If I try to address it, things get better for a few days, and then we're right back here again. I am starting to think I'm better off alone (with our kids) than with him. But I also have too much to lose between the kids, the business I started after we got married, and the vested ownership I have in another $100m-per-year business that will be acquired soon which equals a big financial payout."


11."My ex told me they planned to work six days a week for the first five years of our hypothetical child’s life, leaving me to raise it alone."

—Anonymous, 40, U.S.

12."We got married five months into our relationship. Everything was always great; I had absolutely no indication that he was on dating apps the whole time we had been together. We were both 23 when we got married. I forgave him because I always believed that you don't throw away the people you love because they made a mistake. When that mistake becomes a pattern, though, all bets are off. Three months after I found out, he had to leave for work. The week after he left, I found out that he had downloaded an app and started talking to a woman the DAY he left. I got in contact with her, and I got lucky that she didn't know he had a wife. She told me everything."

A person using a dating app

13."He told me he couldn’t handle that I was 'literally worth more than him in this world' because I made more money. Dude, I went to college and worked my ass off. Be proud! But no, he had a problem with it, so I knew that was it."

—Anonymous, 50, California

14."There were red flags that I chose to ignore but went through with the wedding. The night of our wedding, it was like a switch flipped, and he was a monster. He started saying, 'That's not how a wife should act' whenever we had disagreements, and those little red flags I ignorantly ignored became more apparent. He was controlling, and I'm glad I left less than six months later."


15."Because an emotional affair doesn't cause any less pain than a physical one."

a man looking at his phone in bed with a woman
Peter Cade / Via Getty Images

16."After the 'we’re getting a divorce' conversation hit, we never yelled at each other again. We were nicer to each other after than we ever were before."


17."I knew our marriage had been over for almost a year, but when I came home to find some of my clothes he had borrowed all crumpled up into a ball in a corner, I realized I needed to walk away from this man-child I had mistakenly married."

—Anonymous, 31, Mexico

18."When I simply entertained the idea of having an affair, I knew my marriage was over because I didn’t love and respect my husband the way I should."

a person taking off their ring

—Anonymous, 37, U.S.

Glasshouse Images / Via Getty Images

19."My husband won't get a job after the pandemic. He barely worked before it, but now, it's just not gonna happen. I asked him, 'What would you do if I wasn't here to take care of everything?' He just replied, 'But you are...' That's when I knew I needed to get a divorce."

—Anonymous, 46, Illinois

20."When the therapist we saw after seven years together (three married) said that she could not ethically continue to see us. She said, 'The abuse he had put me through was too great and that his advice to me would be to leave.' He was drunk at 9 a.m. if that tells you anything."

—Sarah, 34, Florida

21."I had just gotten a fairly major surgery and was on day two of recovery. My ex's (very mild) allergies acted up that morning, and they then proceeded to lay on the couch moaning the rest of the week over the sniffles, wanting to be nursed back to health. I realized then that if I was going to do all the caretaking for me AND them all the time, I'd rather just take care of myself alone."

A man blowing his nose

—Anonymous, 30, U.S.

Paul Bradbury / Via Getty Images

22."I had told our couple's counselor during a one-on-one session that I was leaning toward divorce. She asked me to give him one week to write me a letter. We were in counseling because just a few months before, I had received a random message via Instagram from a woman who my husband was DMing. It quickly came to light after this that it wasn't an isolated incident, and in fact, my husband at the time was messaging a wide array of women and had been messing around for years. He claimed to be a sex and porn addict. I agreed to wait for the letter. After a week, it still hadn't showed. Finally, arriving several days later, I opened it up to read all about his feelings and how this was impacting him."

"He didn't write that he was sorry. He didn't write that he was upset to have hurt me. He didn't really write about me at all. I realized at that moment that if I agreed to stay, I would be agreeing to simply allow my entire life to be focused on him while putting myself in the background and out of the picture. It made the decision easy at least. I'm grateful that our counselor suggested the letter so that I could get that final confirmation I needed."


—M, 34, Atlanta

23."I knew we were done when we were in the middle of an argument with our newborn lying nearby, and he wanted to leave and hang out with his friends. He was ALWAYS leaving me with our newborn. When I asked him to not leave and stay and help me, he turned around and told me that 'he didn't care what I thought, he didn't care how I felt, he was leaving to hang out with his friends and would deal with me later.' I was crying, but when he walked out that door, it was like a switch flipped, and I clearly remember thinking 'You will NEVER shed one more tear over someone who cares so little about how you feel.' We stayed married a couple of more years after that until I filed for divorce, but I can honestly tell you that I never shed another tear over him, even the day the divorce became final."

—Anonymous, 35, California

Is there a big or small reason why you decided to divorce your partner? If so, tell us what happened below.