As predicted by Sex and the City and our mothers alike, as we reach our late 20s, the pool of eligible, baggage-free bachelors slowly starts to dwindle. We begin hearing dismal statements like “All the good ones are taken”, making one yearn to book a one-way ticket to Bali and shack up with a dreadlocked surfer named José in an effort to escape the banalities of life.
However, as one pool diminishes, another one begins replenishing itself. This is the pool of the divorcées, often accompanied by a wading pool of rugrats left over from the failed experiment. (I am really outdoing myself with the metaphors today.) Recently confronted with this predicament, I have yet again composed an educational list that showcased the benefits and downfalls on embarking upon a the journey to the Land of Used Goods.
1. Divorced men are capable of commitment – after all, they did it once. While it is hard to refrain from questioning the exact reason it didn’t work out, at least you can be assured that they are not part of the Eternal Bachelor Club, aka looking for the mythical hybrid of Miranda Kerr, Mother Theresa, and their mothers.
2. Having dealt with a wife, a creature far more lethal than any girlfriend, they have a far higher threshold for crazy bitches. They know that “everything is fine” really means “you will pay for it later” and have a keen understanding of the menstrual cycle, equipped with an internal alarm for the five days that you turn into the spawn of El Diablo.
3. Having lost the built-in nanny/maid/cook benefits of having a wife, they have no choice but to familiarize themselves with domestic duties, especially if there’s a child in the picture. Then again, you could probably just go to Sweden or any other country with a year-long paternity leave, I hear they’re all like that up there.
4. You get to see what kind of fathers they are, which is kind of like taking the car out for a test drive. I also happen to think that single dads are sexy, but I’ll take that one up with my therapist.
5. Nobody wants to get divorced twice. While this is a terrible way of ensuring marriage stability, there is an unbeatable logic to the predicament.
1. Why the hell did he get divorced? Trust me, no answer will suffice.
2. You will never experience some of life’s milestones in the same way. The proposal, the wedding, the magical moment of changing the first diaper – he will have done it all before (the latter not being the greatest of tragedies). Also, there is nothing more awkward than hearing about your new boyfriend’s lovely Saint-Tropez wedding to his first wife, especially during a romantic drive by the Eiffel Tower. Just saying.
3. The ex is never really gone. She is there in the references, the photographs, on the tip of the friends’ tongues while recounting anecdotes from the past. If they share an offspring, she is omnipresent in his life and iPhone, a factor that no amount of Pranayama will pacify. On the plus side, you finally start understanding what those NY Post homicide headlines are all about.
4. The kid is cute up until the age of twelve. After that, he becomes a monster. Since it’s not your kid, violent weaponry is prohibited.
5. She is the invisible barometer of everything you do. Your cooking skills, your relationship with the mother-in-law, your ability to lose the posy-baby weight – they will always be benchmarked to hers. Just make sure you win.