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Hearing about divorce from a Supreme Court justice

With the whirlwind of media surrounding the gay-rights issues currently in front of the highest court in the land, if you asked anyone in the state of Washington to name at least one of the justices they probably could. But if you asked that same person to name a U.S. Supreme Court justice who had gone through a divorce, the answer would be quite different.

The truth of the matter is that despite all of their publicity, many of the justices tend to keep the more personal aspects of their lives as private as they can. But in a recent interview of Oprah Winfrey this month, Justice Sonia Sotomayor opened up about one of the most painful decisions she had to make in her life: getting a divorce.

"I was completely consumed with work when I started as a D.A. in Manhattan," she explained, confiding in Oprah that she knew she wasn't paying much attention to her husband and regrets that to this day. They had been high school sweethearts before getting married, and in the beginning her husband had always promised her that if he worked hard enough, he could be just as successful as she was.

But seven years into the marriage, her husband came to her with a difficult conversation topic. He had begun to fear that he would never he as successful as she was and worried that she didn't need him in the way that he wanted her to need him. "It was a difficult issue for him to discuss with me," she explains, which led her to ask herself whether he was right. The answer, sadly, was yes.

Many people in Washington can connect with this story because it's filled with the same hurt feelings and difficult conversations that almost all couples have had before ending a marriage in divorce. And although the process never gets any easier to bare, hearing that someone else has at least gone through a similar circumstance is often times the comfort you need to push forward with your own situation.

Source: The Huffington Post, "Justice Sotomayor Talks Marriage, Divorce And What It's Like To Be On The Supreme Court," Oprah Winfrey Network, March 29, 2013

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