MY husband and I have been married for 15 years. I have been praying to save my marriage for years but it is just getting worse. My husband has a problem with drinking that has decreased but is still there. There have been nights he didn't even come home. Due to the economy (he works in construction) he hasn't had much work and refused to work any job that paid less than he was use to making, therefore we lost our home to forclosure. I worked two jobs to help with finances but couldn't make enough to cover the loss of income to save our home. He is verbally abusive to me and has been most of our marriage. He has threatened to hurt me physically but so far hasn't. When we lost our house we ended up seperating. The verbal abuse got so bad and he started saying things right in front of our children, I felt I had no choice but to get my children and I out of that environment. I know God doesn't agree with divorce but would he really want us to live in this type of environment? I don't want my daughter or son to grow up thinking this is what marriage is and have the same type of marriage. My family and even my husband's family tell me they don't know why I stayed with him this long and understand why I am not with him. I watched one of the videos that said divorce isn't and option but this is the way my marriage has been for many years. Thank you for any advice you can offer.
I'm so sorry you are in this position. I have been there and it is very difficult. I struggled with the same thing, actually, when I left my abusive marriage (which sounds eerily similar to yours, actually) and my Christian counselor told me that my husband had betrayed me and our marriage just as if he had cheated on me and that I needed to protect myself and my child so that is exactly what I did. But honestly, I don't know why I sought answers from anyone else on my situation. It was impossible to stay and live in that hell for any longer and I knew in my heart that the right thing to do was to leave.
For my own peace of mind I tried everything else first...counselors, support groups, prayer, reading books, swallowing my own needs, etc. because I knew that I had to answer to my daughter one day about why I tore her out of the only home she ever knew and deprived her of having a nuclear family. But when nothing else works, you do what you have to do.
I think there are situations in which no amount of love or prayer will change someone who is evil or who has a mean heart. Good for you for giving it your all and then for recognizing that your children (and you) deserve better. God put children in our hands to be protected by us and I truly don't believe He meant for that to be second to fulfilling marital vows. You protect your children no matter what. Period.
I think when people say 'divorce is not an option' it is meant as 'divorce is not an option for two well-adjusted sane people.' If only one of people in the marriage is capable of change and acting like a human being then it doesn't work.
In reply to this post by dee
Dee - Bless your heart for working so hard and enduring such tough trials - all of these things help to make us more like our Christ Jesus! It may not seem like it now, but your suffering is not in vain. I was in Bible Study this morning and the overwhelming message to us is that Our God is Able! He is an ABLE God and He CAN do all things! I know what you are thinking, 15 years is a long time with no answer, but in the span of eternity it is really a blink of an eye. Ephesians 3:20-21 tells us that, "Now to him who is ABLE to do immeasurably MORE than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen"
This verse gives us such hope - that even though you live in a seemingly impossible situation, God is a God of ability! God can not only restore your marriage but He can do even more than you ever imagined!
As a counselor, I understand the emotional toil this type of relationship can have on you. You're tired, you feel defeated, you just want a break. I say, take a break. Remove yourself from the negative situation, not permanently, but long enough to get grounded. Clear your head, spend time in prayer, seek individual counseling (make sure to let the counselor know you intend to save your marriage) and remember that you can do All things through Christ Jesus!
It sounds as if your husband is going through some depression and deflecting his feelings onto you. Men derive so much of their identity in being a provider that it is very, very hard on them when they are not able to come through in that area. I am NOT excusing his behavior, only trying to help you to understand so that you will know how to interact and pray for him. He needs individual counseling as well - he needs control of his anger issues, drinking issues and self esteem issues. No person with any self esteem treats women or children the way he is.
Set up boundaries - let him know that if/when he says "x,y,z" you will be staying elsewhere and when he breaks the rule, follow through with your end of it. Make no mistake here - if he puts his hands on you or your children you are to immediately leave and find proper law enforcement to make sure he does not come near you again until he seeks the help he so desperately needs.
I pray that your marriage will be restored - what an amazing testimony that would be! Be confident though, that even if your husband does not change, God's word is ever true and He will one day wipe every tear from your eye.
Bethany, M.S. Counseling Psychology
In reply to this post by Kim
I realize that this was posted over six months ago so I kind of doubt you are still reading any replies, but if not for you, then maybe someone will read this.
I have been married for almost 40 years. During the time our three children were young the relationship was more of manipulation to get me to be the responsible one, the accountable one, the honorable one, etc. etc. Fifteen years ago he moves across country to take a job and after moving my youngest son, he packs up and leaves. I'm frantically trying to keep things normal for my youngest, my life went from 60 to 0 in eight seconds flat. Over three years, I tried to sell the house, it burned down, I ended up rebuilding it so I could sell it, all by myself with my son. When I finally moved to where he was to put my family back together, he had changed. A lot. But within three months I became very ill. Over the past twelve years I have endured tremendous abuse. He is now an alcoholic and because I am an invalid, he doesnt' even pretend to be nice. I truly cannot beleive this man professes to be a christian. He has not one action to his credit of living like a Christian, just talking like one. I tell him that he has invented a new religion that is about 1/4 the size of the original Bible because so much has nonfun things have been removed. The entire book of Proverbs - history - gone - poof..... Like the other poster, I just couldnt' beleive that this person could be so malicious. It just wasn't in my comprehension. After I became ill he became determined that in order to not appear to abandon me, he would have to just make sure that it was my choice to leave. His every effort is towards that goal of getting me to be the one to walk out, no matter how beligerant, obnoxious, arrogant he has to be. This much I have no doubt about any more.
I tried everything , anything to try and work with this person. I think I could have understood if his lies had truly been from terrible things that he was trying to protect me from. But his lies are so commonplace, they are more common than any truth. There actually isn't any truth in our lives. It isn't going to be the rare disease that I have that will kill me. It will be the choices made by my husband. I have been at death's door on three separate occasions due to his actions. Once when I was semi-conscious and had a port in my chest, he didn't bother to clean it, thus an MRSA infection swept over me and I was within 24 hours of expiring, they said. Last year I begged him to take me to the hospital, he refused. It took me two days of begging before he finally relented. He says he knows the doctors are incompetant and it is a waste of his time. His favorite response to me is "What about me?" He refuses to answer any question I might have. He lied and hid letters from the IRS for five years, forges my name all the time. He makes almost 150K a year, I make 1,100.00 dollars in disability a month and yet he constantly just takes money from my account without telling me, in fact he hides the bank statements so I won't know. I could go on and on. I wanted to just say that I know that God does not want this for my life. But I have no other options now. You do. I waited too long and I know now that he will play a key role in my death. I have been given a clear view of man's free will. It doesn't always follow a made for TV movie with miracle endings. People ask me if I pray for a miracle healing. To be honest, I have prayed more for my husband to be healed miraculously. I see the temporary condition of our earthly experience, so I am not healed here it won't be the end of my life. However, if he does not receive an "awakening," it will be the end of his life, eternally.
I don't know your circumstances, we cannot walk anothers journey. I made choices for my childrens well being, I told myself. But now they tell me it wouldn't have mattered, that they would have managed to deal with whatever had happened. I think they only say that because they didn't have to experience divorce, but maybe I'm wrong. I do know one thing, a child's memory is ridiculously flawed. The small snippets they do recall from their growing years you will find have no logic, no traits of anything you believed you were building for them. My point is this, do not make choices based upon the belief that your children will resent you for denying them some idealic growing years. If you are a mother, they will blame you for giving them the Kindom of La La Land. It is a no win situation so by all means, try to find some sliver of gold in this sea of strip mining we call our generation. I do want to make one distinction that I have noticed over the recent years. This trend of law of attraction is a deceiving lure. I too was snarled into this web of "create the life you desire." Only to end up an invalid with not too much longer to live. I didn't create this. I think that maybe we should have not looked at our lives as our own to decorate like a new home. Maybe we should have rather been determined to "discover the life that God had planned for us." How arrogant of us to think that we could do a better job than Him in creating a worthy existence.
I lift you up in prayer. even though a stranger I am, my intentions for your well being could not be more sincere.
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