A second marriage is often a sign of hope and excitement for the future. It usually indicates a love that makes a person move past a failed previous relationship and be truly open to the possibilities that a true love can bring into their life.
One may decide to get remarried because your first marriage ended because your first marriage ended in a divorce or your spouse has passed away.
Whatever the reason, second marriages are a second chance at settling down and being happy. However, not all is sunshine when it comes to remarriage.
According to studies, approximately 60 to 67 percent of second attempts at marriage lead to second divorces. The second marriage divorce rate is higher as compared to first-time marriages.
So, what can be the reason for such a difference in stats? And how can you avoid being twice divorced and ensure second marriage success?
Why do second marriages fail?
Marriage after divorce often carries with it the weight of a failed commitment. Having gone through a divorce once, most people want to avoid going through the same thing again.
To avoid a second divorce, a person may take longer to consider marrying someone again or they may second guess their feelings for their partner for a more extended time.
However, despite taking these precautions, second divorces can still take place because of the following reasons:
1. Blended family
When one or both partners have children from previous marriages, issues pertaining to trust and loyalty may develop.
When coming together as a blended family, one partner may expect the other partner to treat their children as their own.
Also, there may be a rivalry between the stepsiblings or between the children and step-parent. These factors can cause bitterness and stress, leading to a broken second marriage.
2. Previous relationships
If one partner had a history of trust issues with their ex, they might bring the same issues into their new marriage, opening the door for a second divorce.
Unresolved issues from the past can make you insecure about future possibilities. For example, past infidelity can make you a jealous and insecure partner.
Although reasons to separate a second time exist, so do the reasons to give your second relationship another chance. Read through our list of second divorce prevention advice which aims to aid individuals in developing and maintaining their second marriage.
Instead of wondering how to cope with a second divorce, what can you do to prevent it in the first place?
1. Appreciate and respect
Surprise your partner with a “thank you” or “I love you” when they least expect it. Or help them with a household chore even if they have not asked you to.
Small acts that show your appreciation keep the love alive between spouses and let the other person know that they are not being taken for granted.
Discuss any expectations and ideas that you have about your marriage with your spouse.
Rather than face the possibility of being divorced twice, talk things through with your partner. Honest communication can help you reach a better understanding and resolve conflicts peacefully.
During an argument, try to control your emotions if avoiding divorce is your main aim. Do not blame your partner for everything.
Instead, remain calm and listen to what your partner has to say. This will only make your relationship stronger. It will also reflect the respect you have for one another.
6. Embrace being a step-parent
Accepting your partner’s children as your own may be difficult.
However, a good spouse accepts their partner’s family as their own.
They treat their partner’s children as their own. Hence, talk to the children. Understand their likes and dislikes while gaining their respect. Also, gently but firmly, let them know what rules you expect them to follow.
There is no good in holding grudges against each other. This will only break your relationship more. Instead, forgive and forget. Every day is a new day.
Do not bring up things from the past in the present.
By forgiving the other person, you can showcase your ability to prioritize the relationship over holding petty grudges. If you follow this, then there might be no need to figure out ways of surviving a second divorce.
8. Consider counseling
If you have been married before, the prospects of a second divorce may stress you out and make you second guess every decision and every aspect of your relationship.
To learn how to avoid a divorce you can consider taking up premarital counseling to address your anxieties and make you more confident about the bond between you and your partner.
A good counselor can also help you address problems between you and your future spouse. They provide a way to solve problems healthily and constructively.
9. Address problems
Did the issues in your previous marriage get worse over time? Did you try to ignore them until they were too hard to ignore?
Try to ensure that you and your partner address issues as soon as they arise. Figure out a positive way to handle any problem rather than letting things fester over time.
Unresolved issues can lead to resentment between two people and negativity that can eventually destroy the relationship you and your partner share.
Check out this video by Esther Perel to learn how to resolve conflicts more smartly and positively:
10. Acknowledge past mistakes
The most crucial way to improve the second marriage success rate is to understand and realize the mistakes you made and your part in your first divorce.
If you are still blaming your ex-spouse for all that went wrong in your first marriage, you are most likely not capable of embracing your second marriage.
Accepting and taking full responsibility for the causes of your first divorce is crucial if you are willing to make your second marriage work.
Being honest and open about yourself is even more challenging the second time. It is essential for your second marriage’s success to not hide any secrets or bad habits you took from your first marriage.
Reflecting on your previous mistakes will help you ensure you don’t repeat them the second time.
In a nutshell
Entering into a second marriage may be tricky as it will come with its own complications. However, remember that this is life, giving you a second chance. Please do not give it away.
Try to communicate, respect, love and appreciate your partner to ensure that a 2nd divorce will not be a part of your future. All these attributes will make divorce a word not present in your thought dictionary.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.