Twitter Reacts to Gates Divorce by Sharing 'Last Straws' in Their Marriages

World-famous couple Bill and Melinda Gates announced their divorce on Monday night, sending shock waves through the philanthropy, business, and tech sectors—and sparking worldwide media coverage.

While the potential economic impact of their divorce is undeniable, some people are reacting more strongly to the human side of the story. Billionaires or not, what drives a decades-long marriage to its breaking point?

One Twitter account shared their lingering thoughts on the question after the Gates' news broke last night.

"ppl splitting up after decades of marriage is so interesting to me. i always wonder what the last straw was lol," wrote Twitter user @ceciATL. The post received an outpouring of response, having since been liked over 140,000 times and amassing almost 15,000 retweets.

The replies are filled with stories of people sharing the "last straws" of marriages in their own lives and relationships, offering a vulnerable look into why things didn't work out for them.

ppl splitting up after decades of marriage is so interesting to me. i always wonder what the last straw was lol

— CeciATL (@CeciATL) May 3, 2021

"My husband's parents divorced after 22 years together because his dad stopped showing any romantic interest in her. My mom-in-law is now happy with a new man who treats her like a queen and goes on dates regularly!" wrote one Twitter user.

"We just grew apart, very amicable. Very good friends. We raise our children together beautifully," shared another commenter.

Some of the responses were a bit more on the light-hearted side. For one woman, a relationship reportedly ended when her "ex-hubby farted in the car w/her in it and that was the moment she realized it was over between the two of them..."

"Apparently at age 70, my grandmother looked out the window one day at my grandfather and thought to herself '"I'm sick of looking at this ugly a** man every day' so she packed up her s*** and left," read another reply.

Others used the thread to theorize what may have contributed to the demise of the Gates' relationship, particularly in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"It was the pandemic. Too much time with each other and their money couldn't save the marriage. OR she's mad he is holding the Covid vaccine hostage from other countries because of copyright infringement or some mess," speculated one Twitter user.

"Wealthy people who are used to traveling a lot to tolerate each other are hard-pressed during the pandemic," said another.

Melinda and Bill Gates at Benefit
Melinda and Bill Gates at The Robin Hood Foundation's 2018 benefit. Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

Meanwhile, others joked that it's often the most mundane aspects of a marriage that lead to its downfall—simple things like doing the dishes or leaving the toilet seat up.

"It's the little things like breathing in....breathing out," joked one commenter.

While the couple is ending their 27-year marriage, they say they will continue to work together at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.