ABOUT THE AUTHOR
ABOUT THE BOOK
Thanks For Leaving Me
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Divorce, Remarriage, Later Years, Relationships, Memoir, Alcoholism, Toronto
What people are saying about Thanks For Leaving Me...
Review on Amazon.com on January 11, 2018
"A must-read for anyone going through a midlife re-invention. Emma Bruce bravely opens up about love, loss, and the grieving process as she unexpectedly finds herself single in her sixties. With insight, humor and grace, Bruce deftly takes the reader on a cruise through the murky waters of online dating, navigating the twists and turns that ultimately lead her back to a new sense of self. Candid, engaging, and optimistic, her story is rich with detail, layered with intimacy, vulnerability and emotional exploration. Thanks For Leaving Me...feeling uplifted and hopeful!"
KIRKUS REVIEW on November 30, 2017
A debut autobiography commemorates a four-decade marriage that ended in divorce but opened the way for a new relationship.
Raised in 1950s Quebec, Bruce had romantic notions about marriage. At McGill University, she went on a blind date with Peter Scott, whom she would marry in 1968, at age 22. As sexually liberated as the ’60s are reputed to be, Bruce was sheltered and didn’t know what to expect. “Having married at such tender ages, we basically grew up together,” she explains. Within three years, they had two children. The family moved from Canada to Sydney, Australia, for Peter’s work. Bruce undertook graduate studies in counseling and intermittently served as a research assistant or math and physics teacher. Peter’s drinking was a persistent, low-lying worry, eventually landing him in rehab. However, it hit her with the force of an earthquake when Bruce saw her husband with another woman in 2009. This was Serena, an Alcoholics Anonymous friend, and despite marriage counseling, he left to be with her. At the time of their separation, the couple had been married 41 years. While earlier sections seem like mere rundowns of facts, the book comes alive at this point, as Bruce explores her loneliness and midlife re-creation. “I felt like a toddler, learning to walk and figuring out my identity,” she writes. She captures her situation with insightful details that might not occur to outsiders, like the challenge of cooking for one. Her adventures in online dating become repetitive, but before long she met Chris, who proposed on a trip to Arizona in 2013, exactly three years after she signed her separation agreement. Rather than the expected bitterness or gloating (when Peter split from Serena after a few years), Bruce expresses gratitude for her ex-husband’s actions because she has now found “the love of my life and—even more importantly—myself, my own strength.” But she is realistic about life’s imperfections as well as her own and her new partner’s shortcomings.
Impressively down-to-earth and upbeat, this memoir recounts making the most of disappointments.
Thanks for Leaving Me ...painstakingly details the promising start of her marriage...slow passage from love to disdain...the challenges of separating. The story stops short of capturing Bruce’s happily ever after fully; it ends at the very beginning of her healthy new marriage, juxtaposing nicely to the earlier heartbreak of the divorce. This conclusion is highly satisfying.
For others who have experienced divorce after many years of unhealthy marriage, Bruce’s experiences will feel familiar, and her struggles and realizations will be relatable. That cathartic familiarity is inviting… Thanks for Leaving Me is an honest story of love and self-transformation.
Melissa Wuske, Foreword Clarion Reviews
Very well-written book with positive advice for any person of any age who has suffered serious loss or setback. About getting up and getting back into the race. Inspiring!
A very compelling read!
I couldn't put the book down once I started reading. I was taken by Emma's honesty and candor. I have a new perspective on the emotional roller coaster of couples facing divorce and finding happiness once again.
Emma Bruce tells a difficult story with clarity, honesty, humour, and vividness. We watch her struggles and understand them completely, as she fights to keep her head above water and eventually succeeds. It’s beautifully done.
Beth Kaplan, Professor at University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies.