This is one sad country song: Miranda Lambert and Blake Shelton have filed for divorce after four years of marriage, People reported. The country crooners shared a statement with the Associated Press announcing their breakup on Monday:

"This is not the future we envisioned. And it is with heavy hearts that we move forward separately. We are real people, with real lives, with real families, friends and colleagues.Therefore, we kindly ask for privacy and compassion concerning this very personal matter."

This news comes just

weeks after America's 'couple next door,' Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner announced their divorce on June 30 after three children and 10 years of marriage.

Both breakups left us shocked and saddened. How could they do this to us? They were supposed to have it all.


culture puts celebrities on pedestals, especially celebrity couples who

we feel we can relate to. So when these couples break up, we're left

feeling let down and maybe even a little scared, explains Donna Barnes, NYU Certified Life & Relationship Coach and Good Morning America's Relationship Expert. "The dissolution of anyone’s marriage is threatening to a married

woman. We all want to believe that marriage is forever but it’s hard to

find positive role models to point to; so living vicariously through a

celebrity couple can feel comforting, even empowering," Barnes says.

But we don't know these celebrities, so why did it feel like our best girlfriend just told us she

and her husband were divorcing after reading about Jen and Ben? Well, Logan Levkoff PhD, a sex educator and authortells Motherly that "They

reminded us of us. You knew they weren't perfect. You knew that they

had struggles: to take care of their marriage, their children, their

working lives—and they seemed (like many of us) to be juggling it

all. Did we know them? No. But it always felt like we did."


of us view Hollywood as some sort of fantasy world. These couples have

money, success, fame, power, we say, how could their marriages not survive?

Don't they have all the tools they need? But it turns out that marriage can be

hard no matter who you are or what tax bracket you're in.

"Most people struggle with 'if only’s,' that is, if only we

had more money, or if only we had a bigger house, or if only I was

prettier, or thinner," Barnes explains. "If only I had (fill in the blank) I would be

happy. Therefore, when the marriage of two beautiful, successful, and

famous people falls apart one can’t help but think, 'They had it all and they still couldn’t make it.' It crushes a little of our belief that people can remain together for life."

And people can remain together for life. The good news is there's evidence of that fact all around. Many happy couples experience long, happy marriages together (in fact, among certain demographics, the rate of successful lifelong marriage is going way up.)

But with too much sad news about marriage making headlines, how do we ensure that our own don't fall apart?

For relationship experts, the path is simple, but not easy. Barnes shared with Motherly the same advice that she gives to couples she works with: "Never

take your partner for granted and manage your expectations. Live each

day with gratitude for your partner, family and life and take

responsibility for your own wants, needs and actions. Blame is toxic to