How To Tank A Perfectly Good Marriage In Less Than 4 Months

Just whip out your phone and do this.

couple arguing Andrey_Popov/ Shutterstock

I love to hear about stuff going on through the grapevine. It gives me stuff to think about and it also makes me feel connected to a larger world, you know what I mean?

Recently, I heard a story about a woman who filed for divorce because of something absolutely stupid.

It was so stupid that I felt I need to talk about it — not because of how egregiously dumb it was, but because I’ve heard this happen before to others online.


Meet Brenda* and Eddie*.

Yes, I chose those aliases from the Billy Joel song. I spent time at the Jersey Shore and started to get nostalgic for my hometown, in that weird Stockholm Syndrome-y way.

Brenda had been married to Eddie for about five years. They were what most people would dub the "power couple" in one circle I occasionally find myself in.


Eddie was the type of guy that women would kill to be with. He was charming, highly educated, and also hits the gym. His favorite hobbies included raising Husky puppies and volunteering in the community.

Oh, and Eddie was also super wealthy. Like, he owned a car dealership wealthy. Anyone who’s hung out with people who own a dealership knows that they are R O L L I N G in wealth. Especially upscale dealerships.

Brenda was nothing to sneeze at, either. She had her own accessory line and did well for herself on her own terms.

RELATED: 20 Signs You're An Extremely Toxic Person & Are Difficult To Be Around

Brenda had just started to get into TikTok.


Don’t get me wrong, I love TikTok. However, I also recognize it to be a lot like cocaine — addictive and prone to messing up your mind.

Brenda apparently took it to the next level. TikTok became her thing, full-time. I had to stop her scrolling while we hung out.

Any time you’d hear from her, it’d be from TikTok or texting. She became enamored with all the self-help talking heads that were on there.

At the start, the advice was pretty good. Everyone should do self-care. Meditation is good. Breaking up with an abuser is smart.

Then, the advice started to get more and more toxic.

I blame the algorithm for this, but Brenda's feeds started to get filled with awful information on how to get guys. Some of the pearls of wisdom include:

  • "He’s already cheating on you, so go ahead and find a side piece."
  • "Flirt with other guys to make him jealous."
  • "Berate him and don’t talk to him for days. Then, come back into his life like nothing happened. He’ll work harder to love you."
  • "Have you considered tracking his phone?"
  • "Men are incapable of loving women. When he says he loves you, it means he loves what you do for him."
  • "Remind him that he’s easily replaced."

RELATED: 8 Toxic TikTok Relationship Advice Trends You Really Shouldn't Follow

The advice got to her, and Brenda started being toxic to Eddie.

Long story short, the advice that she got started to make her resent Eddie — despite their relationship having been great for the longest time.

Maybe it’s because she’s almost 40 and felt insecure, but she really started to work on making Eddie jealous.


It was slightly before this point that I tried to warn Brenda about her negative behavior. This kind of crap never works well for women or men, and she was on a bad path. Guys like Eddie don’t come around every day. She ignored me.

Soon, she started flirting with other guys while they were going out.

Eventually, it got to the point where she was openly insulting Eddie. She started to invite friends for wine while she made fun of Eddie…who was in the room right next to hers.

That night, Eddie tried to have a "come to Jesus" moment with Brenda.

He was in tears, asking what he did wrong to deserve this treatment. Brenda couldn’t come up with an answer. He asked whether or not she even found him attractive anymore.


Brenda, taking a cue from TikTok, refused to say anything.

RELATED: 15 Immediate Warning Signs You're Dealing With A Toxic Person

The next day, Eddie served her divorce papers.

Eddie is a man I greatly respect because once he’s through with you, he is through. He is a take-no-s*** type of guy. If he decides that it’s no longer a healthy relationship, he’s done.

I was pretty shocked to hear he pulled the trigger on divorce so quickly. The grapevine also filled me in on the details, because by this point, I wasn’t really interested in talking to Brenda after she hurt my friend.

As soon as she saw the papers, the dam broke. Brenda started apologizing, crying, explaining the whole TikTok thing, begging for another chance, saying she felt insecure


He looked at her, and asked, "So let me get this straight. Instead of talking about a problem with me and a therapist you…got advice from random strangers on TikTok? Literally, people advertising with the hashtag #staytoxic?"

I think it was about then that she realized how stupid she was. She asked for a second chance, and he said no. After all, he didn’t want to be with a partner who would treat him so poorly after all he’s done for her.

He also didn’t want a woman who would prioritize some faceless TikToker and a toxic community over him. Who could blame him? She did a complete 180 from the woman he fell for.


The moral of the story? If the wheel ain’t broken, don’t fix it.

Yep. If your relationship is good or just has minor bumps, try to tackle things together. In most healthy relationships, you can actually overcome issues that way.

That TikToker doesn’t know your story. They also don’t care if you tank your relationship as long as they get views.

If you wouldn’t want someone to behave that way with you, don’t do it to them. So no, don’t #staytoxic.

RELATED: 15 Signs You're Stuck In A Soul-Sucking, Toxic Relationship

Ossiana Tepfenhart is a writer whose work has been featured in Yahoo, BRIDES, Your Daily Dish, Newtheory Magazine, and others.