Don’t want this divorce

I am struggling everyday. I don’t believe in divorce and yet I am in the middle of one. I hate it. Everyday is such a struggle and I have plenty of people to talk to, but each one of them says, Wow, I never saw that coming. Well, me neither. I mean both of us have been faithful followers of Christ. I even became a Pastor, but even my leadership doesn’t really get it. That’s why I am here. I can talk about it without fear of judgement. Most days I pray for healing and reconciliation and still struggle with thoughts of harming myself. That scares the crap out of me because I know that that is not an option. I don’t even really understand why it crosses my mind other that the stress of depression. I even start to question my faith, but I know where He brought me from. I just don’t understand how I got here and why I am here. I just feel helpless and weak in my faith.

Hey @Bob.ecag - I’m so sorry to hear what you’re going through. What does your wife think about the situation? If you don’t want this divorce, maybe she doesn’t either. Have you two tried marriage counseling? I wish the best for you two. Please keep us updated.

From the female’s perspective because I am dealing with issues in mine as well, chances are there is something big that you are missing. Either you haven’t realized something because you have been so focused on things other than your spouse or you have been unintentionally doing things that negatively affected your relationship. That’s why it’s extremely important to talk to your wife and try to figure out the why. It also sounds like you may be struggling with some level of depression which, when untreated, can cause us to do a lit of things we don’t realize because we are so focused on ourselves. Try to talk to your wife about seeking marriage counseling and also try to talk to a therapist yourself and help enlighten yourself. It could also be that things just didn’t work out and you shouldn’t blame yourself. If you don’t want a divorce then try to prevent it but if you can’t prevent it, use it as a lesson to learn from.

We tried counseling and she gave up after 2 meetings. Said she just has to be honest with herself and doesn’t want it. Of course she had outside influences. Emotional affairs. We were on the path to become missionaries to Central America and we are both in the medical field, so there is always stress. We have 2 beautiful children and this just hurts beyond measure. I still am speaking with counsel. She actually changed her mind for 2 days and then said that she just couldn’t do it. Sure she said that we had problems, but even the marriage counselor said that these are problems that all marriages go through and if we are willing then we can get through them. She just says that she doesn’t want it. I try to let it go, but I feel like I am doing something morally and biblically wrong by giving up. I know the promises of God and I am still hoping for healing and restoration.

I have talked with my wife a lot and it is always that I wasn’t there for her. 3 yrs ago now, I went back to schools to get my Masters Degree. It was hard and I was stressed. It put a lot on her and I made sure that I spent any extra time I had with the kids. I just thought that my wife would be ok and understand. I was wrong. Even though I gave her credit and continually thanked her for all she did, she said that she grew apart from me. She also says that I hurt her by how I talked to her. I know that I was short with her but I never belittled her or tried to hurt her. I accept that I did though. I was willing to get help for myself and her, but now all she says is that it is too late. 12 yrs down the drain and 2 more kids from a broken home. I hate it. I just pray that God will hear my prayers and her heart will soften. I truly do love this woman. Thank you for your replies and hearing my heart.

I had a similar conversation with a female I know where her fiance was only spending time with the kids and never her and he never appreciated her or spent time with her unless she instigated it. They don’t have kids together but he has two and she has one. I understand that you want things to work out and it’s difficult to process this but there is such a thing as too little, too late. I’m sure you really love her and the kids but actions speak louder than words and when someone is hurt by your actions, your words stop holding weight. I had the same issue with my spouse and he still does a lot of the things that bother me that we talked about fixing. Some people just can’t be talked out of their habits because they don’t see the behavior as wrong. It sounds like she just isn’t willing to try anymore, even if you put in the effort. She waited too long to talk about things and simmered and stewed on the things bothering her until they ate her alive. People don’t understand how important it is to talk about problems in the relationship but she chose to not give you that respect and instead used it as fuel against you. At the same time, if she kept talking to you about things that bothered her and you did not make an effort to change you habits, then she would just think that you didn’t care enough. People become so accustomed to their spouse/significant other that they forget they are their own individual person and they can’t read your thoughts. They see your actions and judge you based on that. I hope you are able to figure stuff out but I also hope that you can empathize and understand her perspective so that maybe you two can work together and find a path that works for you both.

I read your post and your reactions, just to get a clear picture. You say you are divorcing, but it is unclear to me at what stage you are, ignoring the problem, talking about it, or filling in the actual paperwork. If it’s either first two then there is hope to fix this, but you both will need to be honest and open in talking to each other about what you want and need out of this relationship… sometimes it’s easier to do that on paper, in writing to each other, because in discussions emotions can get in the way and you can say things you don’t mean, or just mean at that moment in time. If it’s the last then the only suggestion I can give is that you’ll need to learn to live with it. I am not religious, but I know the power of faith, and I don’t think you’re losing your faith because of a disagreement with your church. Always remember that even a Pastor is only human, and some things are just outside of their ability to understand, and if this is something your church cannot deal with, maybe it is time to switch churches if that is possible for you, I don’t know how that works, but if it is I am sure it will carry an amount of shame, which doesn’t help with the thoughts of harming yourself.

I do want to say that my heart goes out to you, I can understand that what you thought was safe and good now suddenly turns out to be broken and about to be thrown away. To see your entire life you built brick by brick suddenly fall, going from order to chaos, is very scary. Just be the best human being that you can be. If I understand anything about religion you were doing that already, but apparently your focus was off. Don’t make promises you can’t keep, don’t just say things because it is what she wants to hear, but most importantly; be willing to face life head-on, what ever it will be. If anything, stay open to talk about things in calm emotion, because when things get emotional people loose the ability to listen properly (and that goes everyone; you, your wife, even your Pastor :P)

Keep your feet warm and your head cool.
I hope you will be alright.

Martin / ThatOldDutchGuy