Heather Armstrong is Separated. Who Cares?

On Tuesday last week, iconic blog mom and author Heather Armstrong  announced that she and her husband have separated. More than just the blogosphere  has been buzzing. Twitter, Facebook, parenting websites and even major news sources, like ABC News  and The New York Times, have been featuring this announcement. This struggling marriage seems to have taken on international proportions, drawing sympathy from thousands of fans. But why?

On average, 50% of first marriages in America still end in divorce, while 65% of second marriages fail. Even the most private relationships have trouble, imagine how hard it is to keep it together under the public eye. And this isn’t even a couple known to their audience on the silver screen, masked by scripts and scores. What you see is what you get. For almost eleven years, Heather Armstrong has stood in front of her readership in emotional nakedness, unscripted and without apology.

So, I can’t help but wonder, who cares? And why?

We care.

There are dozens of reasons why she has such a strong following. After all,  Forbes referred to her as one of the most influential women in media, and HGTV added her to their design blog team. She has had numerous interviews and awards.  Heather Armstrong took her blog from creative outlet, to lucrative business. But, unlike many of the celebrity personalities decorating the tabloid magazines, Heather Armstrong captured our hearts in the most intimate way, by telling her story, everyday. We read her words as if listening to a friend. We comment as if our opinion matters. We’ve watched her go from single working girl to married with children. Many of our hearts have beat in unison as she confides about her trials with depression. We cheer her on in parenting moments, personal triumphs and relationship woes. We laugh at her candor and marvel at her observations.

We relate.

We celebrate.

We are inspired.

Above all else, we want to see her succeed, especially at the very things that we strive to protect and perfect every day: our relationships, our children, our creativity, and our future. We want to hold on to the hope that our dreams can come to fruition, that our lives will not fall to a national statistic.

And as a fellow blogger, we want to be able to say, “See – we can have it all.”

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About My Pajama Days

I am Emily Okaty Wilson, freelance writer, blogger and public speaker. It sounds better than saying I stay in my pajamas all day eating salt and vinegar chips. I claim to be a wife, a mother, a homeschool teacher and a musician. Sometimes I'm funny.
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6 Responses to Heather Armstrong is Separated. Who Cares?

  1. I agree – I feel like she’s a friend, or a big sister. I do care and I’m very sad for them.

    I hate myself for this – but it’s utterly compelling to watch this unfold. I’m checking back every day to see if she’s posting about it again. It’s sick, but I bet her traffic is through the roof at the moment.

  2. Sandi Ormsby says:

    Personally: I’m not interested in reading about someone’s divorce. Even if they are in the public eye, announce it, and be done with it…everyone should be allowed some common courtesy, some dignity to move forward without their spouse. We don’t need to gossip or offer opinions.

    BTW, re: “We want to hold on to the hope that our dreams can come to fruition, that our lives will not fall to a national statistic…” well said, but I don’t think divorce is causing her to lose that dream or even damaging it. Her happiness is just being altered a bit.

    Sandi
    http://www.ahhsome.wordpress.com
    Lake Forest, CA

  3. Kim says:

    Well said!!

  4. mommakiss says:

    While I do want her to succeed and be happy, I don’t think knowing that her marriage is failing changes that for me. I just hate that she has to go through it so publicly.

    • I totally agree with you on that – but wouldn’t it be nice to see people succeed in their personal lives as much as their professional ones?

      • Kathleen says:

        Of course it IS nice to see people succeed, but you mean, “and never fail”, and good luck with that. She did succeed, just not indefinitely. I don’t know of this woman or how long she has been married, but I do know that the only constant is change.

        I do empathize with her. It SUCKS. It’s devastating, I have been there, heck who hasn’t, but the potential death of her marriage does not automatically destroy her future, nor negate the blessings she has had up to this point. It just changes, and we endure – or don’t.

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