E&U Update! Michelle and Ben, No Longer Together

In honor of today’s LIVE wedding, we’re bringing you updates from past couples on Engaged & Underage! Some relationships have grown stronger, some have collapsed… hey, that’s life, right? Check in with…

Michelle & Ben:

Michelle Says: It’s amazing and quite scary how a life can change over the course of a year. It can turn completely tragic and leave one wondering how that happened so suddenly. My marriage failed. Six years of love and dedication faded, and I have already forgotten what my heart felt like on my wedding day. The memory is a haze, and I’m startled at the thought of that.

There’s a part of me that feels empty — as if a part of me is missing. I suppose that is what happens when you give someone your heart and they give it back. I will find love again, and my heart will be whole again. But until then I need to figure out who I am. Constantly consumed in the drama of an unhealthy relationship molded me into a monster — that’s not me. The divorce was a necessity for both of us to clear our consciences.

I keep replaying things in my mind; our first kiss, prom, our engagement… everything. My heart sinks and my stomach turns when I can’t remember how my heart felt at those times. All I know is how it feels now and that consumes my memories.

I tried to make the marriage last. I wanted it to last more than anything. But who I was when I was 15 wasn’t who I grew to be at 21. Predictable, I know, but I always thought Ben would be a part of my life. People told me not to get married young, I didn’t listen. I never would have listened, because I wanted to be married. I suppose I’m somewhat glad I found out the hard way that it was a mistake. I should have waited, though.

I kept wondering where we went wrong, and then it hit me — we were always wrong. We weren’t right for each other. I learned that love isn’t enough. I learned that just because you’re with someone for a long time doesn’t mean you’ll be with them forever. I wanted to prove everyone wrong and be with Ben forever, but there was no saving us. We just didn’t work. We couldn’t work. All the years that I was hurt and cried myself to sleep were masked by a smile and a “perfect relationship”. I wanted everyone to think we were perfect because I wanted us to be perfect. But what is “perfect”, anyway? It doesn’t exist. It never has. A relationship can be so beautiful even with complications, but there’s a point where the complications outweigh the beauty and people’s minds and hearts begin to be consumed with hate.

I’ve matured a lot over the course of a year. With that maturity came the realization that we would never work no matter how hard we fought for it. I then came to the realization that I hated myself. I hated the person I was with him. I’m not asking for pity, and I’m not blaming that on him; we just don’t work together. I meant every word of my vows. Those tears on my wedding day were tears of love and dedication, but people can only fight to be together for so long.

While I will have to face the “I told you so!”‘s, I feel brave enough to understand that this experience has changed me for the better. My happiness needs to become important to me, and I’ve learned that my happiness will only be fulfilled if Ben and I go our separate ways. This decision was mutual, and I only wish him a happy and successful life. I married my first love, I lost my first love. Unfortunately we couldn’t be together forever like we had always dreamed of. It’s so strange to think about how I wanted to have children with this man, and how unfortunate it is how it ended up.

If I could give anyone advice it would be… to be sure. If you feel unsure about marriage, it probably is unsure. Wait it out – marriage doesn’t make a relationship “all better” and work, and I learned that the hard way. If there are warning signs, take them seriously, because I had to face the fact that love isn’t always enough.

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