Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Let's Cut Bill And Melinda Some Slack

Warning: this is not really about education, and the title is not ironic snark.

There are some things in life that you just don't get unless you've been there. Divorce is one of them. I've been through divorce school (Motto: You'll learn a lot, but the tuition is really high) and I'm getting that feeling I have every time I see famous people having their marital meltdowns plastered all over the news while everyone tries to dissect the relationship.

Nobody really knows exactly what goes on in a marriage; sometimes even the two people involved are a little fuzzy. That goes quintuple for divorce. I can tell you four different stories about the end of my previous marriage, and every one of them is true (but there's only one that I really believe). 

With a divorce, something has died, and everyone involved--even the person who decided to pull the plug--has grieving to do. The shape and trajectory of your life has changed. Private aspects of your life are pub lic, and public things become private. Some people become softer, more pliable, and some harden and lock in place. Some folks take a long time to sort it all oiut and find a new normal. Some folks have to revise their ideas about "how this is going to work now" on a daily basis. And children complicate everything by a factor of Very Much. And everybody else has an opinion. 

There's a lot of money in play with the Gates un-Gatesing, and in the past we've watched them work out their personal issues by trying to put themselves in charge of the rest of us. And there's a certain sweet schadenfraude in considering Bill Gates as a failure as a husband. 

I'm fully prepared to keep calling the two out for dumb ideas about education and ham-handed efforts to install themselves as a roving unelected bosses of whatever captures their interest. But divorce sucks, for everyone involved, and on top of that, no matter how much we think we know, we are never going to know. So I intend to keep my eye on their public and damaging failures, and leave their private and personal failures alone.

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