THE Biblical Grounds for Divorce

By Danni Moss
Copyright protected, all rights reserved

In a recent dialog in the comments resulting from three posts (Rick Warren and Saddleback Church on Domestic Violence, Transcript of Saddleback Church Teaching on Abuse, and Transcript of Saddleback Church Teaching on Divorce) I made a comment, which generated a question, the answer to which needs its own space. So here they are, with a little amplification.

Original comment: …Yet, when the subject is domestic abuse, which is far more egregious than adultery – and has the same spiritual root – there is no acceptance of the offending spouse’s decision and no acceptance of the offended spouse’s options.

Question: OK, I’m stumped. What is “the same spiritual root” that adultery, abandonment, and abuse have in common?

Answer:

“Putting asunder” – violation of the marriage covenant by utterly severing the one-flesh/one-spirit bond.

This is one of the “illogics” I see in this piece. The speaker gives permission for a wife to proactively divorce her adulterous husband though he remains under the same roof with her and refuses to get a divorce. This is exactly the same as an abuser.

The violence to the one-flesh/one-spirit relationship is sexual with another person in a sexually adulterous relationship.

The violence to the one-flesh/one-spirit relationship is geographic with abandonment.

The violence to the one-flesh/one-spirit relationship in abuse uses a literal spirit of murder (expressed through rage, etc. – not necessarily inclusive of actual murderous actions) to kill the spirit and body of the spouse (in violation of multiple Scriptures) and also demands an idolatrous relationship, which is a direct violation of the Word.

The Word makes the very clear connection that the reason sexual adultery is grounds for divorce is because human marriage is a picture of our relationship with God, with the marital one-flesh relationship being a picture of our worship and one-ness with God. Adultery is equivalent to idolatry — that is why it is grounds for divorce. This is THE reason it matters.

When two are married they become ONE – this is not just a sexual thing. They are ONE unified whole. This is why abandonment has the same root as adultery. Two cannot be one if one has abandoned the other. The reason abandonment is grounds for a divorce is not because the Bible says “here is an exception to the rule.” It is because abandonment is the same sin as adultery.

This matters because of what Jesus said repeatedly about the spirit of the law being more important than the letter of the law. Abandonment and adultery are the same violation – because it is a violation of the spirit of the law; of the one-flesh marriage covenant. Further, it is a violation of fact; not just the opinion of a whining spouse who wants an excuse for a divorce.

And this is also true of abuse. It is the same root of “putting asunder” committed by the abusive spouse, who has utterly violated the one-flesh/one-spirit relationship, though s/he continues to reside under the same roof and professes a desire to remain married. The spouse of an abuser – even a verbal and emotional abuser – is literally in far more physical danger than the spouse of a sexual adulterer! And this danger, which extends to the levels of spiritual authority (principle outlined in I Cor. 6:15-20), persists even beyond the boundaries of a marital separation. But the church is oblivious to this fact.

I thought many times that I wish my husband would have an affair. That would have been far less painful, far less damaging to the children, far less ruinous to all of us for the rest of our lives! AND the church would have blessed the dissolution of our marriage. It is a conundrum.

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22 Responses

  1. Wow! I was blown away by your last paragraph. This is a great article

  2. I have been researching this whole issue and am thankful that you have created this site.
    I esp. like your comment about “putting asunder”
    The hebrew translation of divorce is “to put away” .
    I am in a verbally and emotionally abusive marriage, I am a Christian, and I am trying to decide if I should divorce my husband. I certainly feel “put away” with his abuse.
    If we serve a loving God, who could deny that He wants his children to live in peace?
    No one wants to go through a divorce. Restoration is a much better option. But , if the other spouse is unwilling to help restore the marriage, what other options are there?
    I appreciate your site and will return.
    Thank you and God Bless your ministry.

  3. Gretchen, I know exactly where you are right now, having been there myself. Keep searching, you will find the answers. God doesn’t want you to be abused!

  4. I appreciate that last paragraph. Sometimes I wish mine would have an affair so I’d have a “biblical”reason to leave.

    But you know what? The God I serve is a loving and fair and just God. I believe that only he knows my heart, my efforts, my threshold and my marriage….way more than any human who can do their best to interpret the bible or thwart their opinion at me. As a Christian woman, if I decide to walk, I know in MY heart, between my God and I, that I have given my all and can do no more. I don’t believe Jesus would want a person so emotionally beaten to the ground that she’s but a figment of who she use to be, scarred with depression and subjecting precious children to a lifestyle that is less than a good example of a marriage, home and family union.

    Whether or not someone concurs that emotional abuse and control is not a reason to leave….I believe that decision is between myself and Jesus!

  5. I too have wished the same thing for years!!!!! That alone should be a sign that something is dreadfully wrong in the relationship, when you want your husband to cheat on you. I am ashamed to say this, but I finally did end up cheating (I didn’t go all the way though) so that maybe my husband would divorce me. (Is this messed up or what? Just so you know, I have seriously repented of that!) Instead, he thought that I must want more sexually, and took this opportunity to spice up our sex life, some of which included mild violence which I was not comfortable with. (He somehow turned even my adultery into a way to benefit him in this marraige, instead of just letting me go.) He was addicted to pornography after we had been married for 3 yrs., and disconnected from me and has always been abusive, yet it has only been physical 1-2 times. And has also dealt with the children in what I would consider abusive behavior. He constantly disregards boundaries, and rules don’t apply to him. And of course, everything is always my fault.
    I now believe that the Holy Spirit is leading me to get a divorce. But I have been waiting for more wisdom from God on how to proceed. It is hard to think of what I am going to tell people and if they will think I am doing the right thing or not. Now that I have told my husband that I believe the Holy Spirit may be leading me to divorce him, he says he wants to work it out, but I must be committed. Well, I have been committed for 11 1/2 yrs. and have begged and pleaded that he would do something, counseling, anything. Now that I am emotionally prepared to leave he pulls this. I don’t trust that he will really change. He tells me to change but I have been seeking God and changing for 11 1/2 yrs. (Except for about 6 mo. when I had given up.) Now that he says he wants to work it out, I feel that I am the “bad guy” and will not have as much support if I divorce. But I don’t trust him and he is an abuser. Is this just another trick to control me? I mean, he could have worked on our marriage at any time–why is he acting like he wants to now? Should I extend mercy? I have forgiven him and do not wish any harm to come to him, but I can’t bear the thought of living with him. I don’t want to be the one to do the wrong thing. But every time I get concerned about this, I feel the Holy Spirit telling me it’s o.k. and that I should pursue a divorce. Then I have such peace and joy. But guilt tries to creep back in.

    • There are so many things here that are very typical of abuse!

      Your husband used your infidelity to increase control and manipulation. That could practically have been scripted!

      The use of violence – at all – is a problem. We tend to categorize it and think that because it’s not as bad as REAL abuse it is less of a problem. That is not true. Violence is a HEART issue – violence is exactly the same whether it is verbal, physical only a couple times, hides under the label of “discipline,” or is full-on beatings on a regular basis. It is all THE SAME because it comes from the heart – not the other way around.

      Pornography addition IS sexual adultery in marriage. He is having ongoing affairs with other women. The Word says if a man lusts after a woman in his heart he has committed adultery. It really means what it says. Obviously that doesn’t mean occasional lust – or no man would be innocent! But as with everything else it is about continual, persistent, unrepentant behavior.

      As for what you are going to tell people or what they will say – you can count on not being able to please people and getting flack. I’d really encourage you to read Blessing for the Ultimate Sacrifice in an Abusive Marriage — it’s about who is going to be Lord of your life. Will it be all those other people and what they think, or the God who has told you His will?

      As for your husband now deciding he wants to work it out – again, that response could literally have been scripted. In fact, you can see another woman who is experiencing the same thing in recent comments to Verbal Rage in Marriage and Parenting. I’ve also just corresponded with another woman who is experiencing the exact same thing. My ex did this to me repeatedly. It is more common than not! For a Christian wife, it is the most powerful, ultimate manipulation for an abuser to play the God and repentance cards!!! You can expect him to play on the sympathies of Christian friends in order to use them to attempt to manipulate you too. He will probably expose your previous infidelity as “proof” of “where you heart really is.” Unfortunately, that one will be a consequence of your choice – but it is irrelevant to the present situation. You just need to be prepared for that painful reality.

      Guilt comes from ONE SOURCE – and it isn’t God. Trust the Holy Spirit! That will probably be a continuous battle for awhile because we are programmed to listen to the devil’s guilt line.

      But what your husband is doing is simply more manipulation. In fact, if he truly wants to change, he will change even if you get a divorce and will pray for and work toward reconciliation after a divorce. That is a real revelation of an abuser’s heart. They will play the game and fight – but once the divorce is final, if not before, they are hunting for their next victim (or sometimes they become stalkers – but that is obviously still abuser behavior), because they have to have one and you have made it clear you won’t be manipulated back into his grip.

      Hang in there! God has shown you what to do and you can hold to that without wavering. HE CAN BE TRUSTED.

      — Danni

      • Thank you. This is proof to me that I am doing the right thing. He said to me a few days ago, “I need to know if we are going to work this out. I can’t give anything else into this relationship until I know.” Well that doesn’t make any sense to me. If he really loved me, he would keep on loving me whether I wanted to work it out or not. And you have just confirmed and exposed that. I do horribly regret the adultery issue…..if I hadn’t done that I would feel pretty blameless in this whole thing and he would have nothing but false accusations to stand on. It was a dreadful mistake made out of desperation and clouded thinking. (I never would have thought of myself as ever doing something like that before.) I hated myself for that for a long time, but have peace with God now. But you are right. I will have to reap the consequences of that in some way, most likely.
        But I am concerned about the kids. How much they will find out, how much they might hear from others. One of the big reasons I have stayed with him so long is because at least while he was in the same house with me I could protect them. I am concerned what it will be like for them when they are alone with him on weekends or whenever he has them. But I also feel that God hs spoken to me that he will protect them through this whole process.
        Your website has confirmed many things to me that I believe the Holy Spirit has been showing me. I am going to get a divorce. Now I am just praying about how. No fault so that it can be peacable, or should I file saying that he was abusive (mental cruelty). And the adultery issue, (although I didn’t actually have sex with the other man, just other things–but I know this is still adultery in God’s eyes–even though he already broke the union by his neglect, abusive actions and pornography addiction.) can that weaken my case in court if he brings it up? In the state I live in everything is divided evenly between the two spouses.
        Thank you.
        P.S.–He thinks I am impossible to live with and says he has never been like this with everyone else. He says that he was always a nice person until he married me. He is my Aunt’s stepson–no blood relation–so I will still be seeing him at family gatherings (which is why I am considering a no fault divorce so that there can be peace between us). We have agreed that we both will choose not to say anything negative about eachother, but I have never been able to trust him before, so I have no guarantee of that.

        • I’m going to reply in the body of your response:

          Thank you. This is proof to me that I am doing the right thing. He said to me a few days ago, “I need to know if we are going to work this out. I can’t give anything else into this relationship until I know.” Well that doesn’t make any sense to me. If he really loved me, he would keep on loving me whether I wanted to work it out or not. And you have just confirmed and exposed that. Exactly. “I can’t give anything else into this relationship until…” is a statement of putting the blame off on you, as if he is doing all the work. Huh? We do right because it is right, not because we get what we want or whatever.

          I do horribly regret the adultery issue…..if I hadn’t done that I would feel pretty blameless in this whole thing and he would have nothing but false accusations to stand on. It was a dreadful mistake made out of desperation and clouded thinking. (I never would have thought of myself as ever doing something like that before.) I hated myself for that for a long time, but have peace with God now. But you are right. I will have to reap the consequences of that in some way, most likely. Well, don’t think of it as punishment. If you’ve confessed and made it right with God, it is done. Regardless of what he tries to say, it has no bearing on present actions. If it mattered, he would have done something about it long before now. For him to bring it up now is pure manipulation. You just need to not be sucked into the blame and guilt or be thrown into despair if other people get confused by his smoke screen.

          But I am concerned about the kids. How much they will find out, how much they might hear from others. One of the big reasons I have stayed with him so long is because at least while he was in the same house with me I could protect them. I am concerned what it will be like for them when they are alone with him on weekends or whenever he has them. But I also feel that God hs spoken to me that he will protect them through this whole process. This is something that there are no answers to. One of the reasons we all hate divorce is because, even when it is the right thing to do, there are still negative consequences. But they are less negative than staying in the relationship and teaching the children by default that God doesn’t care, their heavenly father is abusive, and to either marry an abuser or be abusive in their own marriage.

          Your children may not understand now. One of mine doesn’t and, of course, my daughter is too young to really protest yet. She may well not understand when she’s old enough to think about it more deeply. She already asks why I can’t love her dad (he’s told her I got a divorce because I didn’t love him). The most important thing for us is to not get into mud slinging. It’s hard to do. With older kids we can explain some things and they will choose how to respond. And only time will determine what they choose to do with it.

          With younger kids there are limits. I keep telling my daughter that it didn’t have anything to do with her, it’s between daddy and mommy, and daddy and mommy both love her very much. She doesn’t need to know anything more than that right now. When he says things that aren’t appropriate, I “talk” to him about it BY E-MAIL ONLY SO THERE IS A RECORD, and appeal to him based on what is best for the kids, not what he’s doing to me. But at the end of the day, I can’t keep him from doing wrong. He’s not going to stop once we’re not under the same roof! I can hardly be surprised.

          Your website has confirmed many things to me that I believe the Holy Spirit has been showing me. I am going to get a divorce. Now I am just praying about how. No fault so that it can be peacable, or should I file saying that he was abusive (mental cruelty).
          Get a good attorney – priceless – and ask for advice. But in general, unless you have concrete proof, an abuse allegation will blow up in your face. The courts look at that as a woman attempting to gain advantage in a custody battle. It will count against you, rather than for you.

          And the adultery issue, (although I didn’t actually have sex with the other man, just other things–but I know this is still adultery in God’s eyes–even though he already broke the union by his neglect, abusive actions and pornography addiction.) can that weaken my case in court if he brings it up? Be sure to tell your attorney exactly what happened so he will be able to be prepared. But, the biggest thing in your favor is that your husband knew about this for all this time and did nothing. If it didn’t matter enough for him to do anything about it sooner, it should make no difference in court. If he gets a good attorney, and tries to fight you in court, his attorney WILL attempt to use this to make you look bad. So your attorney needs to know ahead of time so s/he can proactively handle the objection.

          In the state I live in everything is divided evenly between the two spouses. If you can get him to agree to an uncontested divorce that would be great. But there will have to be some attorney interaction most likely to mediate child visitation, child support, etc. A good attorney is a MUST. Choosing an attorney based on dollars can cost you everything – and what is our children’s life worth?

          Thank you.

          P.S.–He thinks I am impossible to live with and says he has never been like this with everyone else. He says that he was always a nice person until he married me. This is impossible. We all make our own choices. And abusers ALWALYS blame the other party for their own behavior. He will do the same things to the next person and blame her for it, too.

          He is my Aunt’s stepson–no blood relation–so I will still be seeing him at family gatherings (which is why I am considering a no fault divorce so that there can be peace between us). We have agreed that we both will choose not to say anything negative about eachother, but I have never been able to trust him before, so I have no guarantee of that. It would be a good idea to include verbage in the divorce papers about not speaking negatively about each other – that is part of state divorce verbage in some places. But that way, if he doesn’t hold to his word, you at least can say “see, this what is required by law.”

          Family gatherings are awkward and can be painful. But I’ve made a point of being unfailingly nice and polite – toward his family, too. If nothing else, it is important for my own state to forgive with an open hand (while not putting myself or my children in danger). And God says for us to bless those who curse us. He isn’t joking. It gets easier with time, I think. I’m able to do this now from my heart. At first it was an exercise in self-discipline. 😉

          — Danni

    • I know your pain. I was in an abusive marriage for 9 years, and put up with all kinds of abuse imaginable. The first time I stood up to him, he brought me into his ruthless subjection through manipulating the elders of churches we attended to rebuke me to “perform my wifely duties.” I did everything I could to please him after that because of the guilt inflicted upon me, but he always ended up blaming me and threathening me, reporting back to the elders whenever he thought it was “time.” Everything was because of me. I even got to a point why I could not understand how I had so many friends that wanted to help me and enjoyed being around me when he kept telling what an awful person I was, because at that time I really believed in all the verbal abuse he threw at me. In the midst of all this, I caught him having cybersex with women online; I found hotel receipts, phone records of him calling up strip clubs and visiting asian spa parlors; I found emails of him emailing women about prices for pleasure, and he flat out denied ever having an affair. He was even fired from being a manager because he supposedly said he was wrongfully accused of TWO sexual harrassment claims from his employees! He never took responsibility for his mistakes and actions, and his like-mother supported in everything he did, and always took his side. The saddest part is, he was supposed to be a preacher, like his brother, and his dad was a deacon, who after 35 years of marriage, left his mom because she neglected him, so he sought love somewhere else. I was so ready for a divorce, but the elders told me that I could not divorce him unless I knew for SURE that he was having an affair. I had to put a face and name to his adulterous partner, and all these “clues” were not enough. I was devastated. I’ve had to go to court four times during our marriage to seek protection from the court from him. Finally, I managed to establish myself secretly without him knowing based on what I learned from the domestic shelters, and slowly gained my independence. I went back to school despite going through a crazy year of divorce, made 4.0s in college, got a great job and he just despises me for that. He quit a great job, lost insurance on the children, and not paying any child support and still goes to that same church that he’s manipulated to show “face.” What a disgusting animal. He thinks GOD’s blessed him? And the church? Oh, they accept him, because they don’t see me going there anymore. They act as though they don’t understand why I left. As far as they are concerned, they don’t think they should judge his motives, that that is GOD’s. They knew about the abuse and everything I had to go through, but they simply ignored it. I left that church, lost lots of ties there, but have since moved on. I want to freely say that I have every right for a divorce, but I’ve been so emotionally blackmailed and brainwashed, I am still trying to unthink all of that. Does GOD allow divorce in this situation? I already did it. He was not going to do it. He told me so. It was his way of keeping me under his control. We are divorced now, thank GOD for that. I just don’t know if what I did was right scripturally with all the controversy budding around divorce, marriage, and remarriage. I mean, are you supposed to divorce AS SOON as you know it is happening? He committed these things on and off during the 9 years we were together, that the elders told me that once I accepted him back I could not divorce him, because I had forgiven him. I just want to know that what I did was scripturally right. I met someone towards the end of my marriage that could see my pain and wanted to help me, but was at loss how to. I truly believe GOD sent him into my life for a reason, because today we are together, in love, and wanting to please GOD in our daily lives. He sees my struggle and wants to move our relationship a step up, but at the same time I am still struggling with this, and we both decided to let me figure this out first so my mind can be free. Anyone, please, reply me. I will forever be grateful to you. GOD BLESS YOU GREATLY. Thank you for reading my long but hopefully sincere note.

      • …the elders told me that once I accepted him back I could not divorce him, because I had forgiven him.

        That is a bunch of bull-oney. The Bible never says any such thing. Even if that were true – which it is not – since there was never acknowedgement of the sin and any process of discipline, etc. he never repented. So whether you had any evidence of it or not, he was either actively continuing in adultery or was just between times. There was no repentance.

        You are completely Biblically correct in what you did. Satan wants to beat you up with false condemnation. But that is not how God sees you. He loves you, you are blessed, and He is delighted that you are free. None of us like divorce. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t Biblically necessary at times.

        — Danni

      • YOU HAVE BIBLICAL GROUNDS UNQUESTIONABLY!!! Jesus said that adultery is a reason for divorce. Yes, you forgave him, but he is clearly unrepentant. You should continue to forgive his actions in your heart, but you are in no way obligated to keep him in your life. You could have divorced him 9 yrs. ago when all of these affairs first happened, but you chose to stay, trying to do the right thing. He never repented, so yes, you still have grounds. You have biblical grounds so be free!!!
        P.S.–I believe that God will honor you for wanting to do the right thing in your heart, even when you didn’t know what the right thing was. Keep following Him and you will be blessed. He has a great future in store for you, and never wants to see His little ones mistreated for no reason. Here are two reasons in the bible for people treating us poorly–persecution for righteousness (our faith), and if we do wrong and break the law the authorities have the power to punish us as they see fit (police, courts, etc.) But you should never be punished just for being yourself and trying your best!!!

    • Dear Daddy’s Girl I know exactly how you feel. I was in an abusive marriage of ten years. Now he is begging and pleading with me to stay. I walk out the beginning of the year because the last act of violence was trying to set me on fire in front of my daughters,just to hear the crazy ideal that he was only playing with me. He knows where I live and is now harassing me on a weekly basic. I will be moving to a new location if it is God’s will which I am praying for it to be so. There are days when I feel so helpless as if I have committed the sin by leaving him. The marriage in my opinion was over three years prior to me leaving. Now he is telling me that God is going to punish me for leaving him and have on several occasion considered going back. It is just then I remember how my first husband use to drag ,kick,slap,punch me any time he felt it was necessary. I remember when my knee get almost shattered. I stayed on crutch’s for three months. I have said in my heart that I would rather die then stay with this one him( the first one eventually died). I use to be attacked by demonic force when I was living with the man I am married to by paper only because in my heart he does not exist .I don’t like for my baby girl who is his child to go to visit because it is as if the demonic force are stronger, but I know greater is he that is in me then he that is in the world. He now claim he is a changed man and I need to go to counseling in oder to save the marriage or I am hell bound. I am praying for you.

  6. Thank you so much! Lots of good advice in your post that I will be coming back to again and again, I’m sure.
    About the attorney…..I have no money, my husband has no money. I will be going to Legal Aid. (They provide free legal services to low income people.) But he is not going to contest the divorce (we talked about it more today).
    I would be interested in reading something about how the abuser treats the children after the divorce…assuming that the abuser gets to have the children unsupervised. Have you had much feedback on this? Does the abuse get shifted toward the children in any way, or do they generally fare pretty well? I have been an at-home-mom for their entire lives and my husband drives a truck (gone most of the time) so I am sure I will get the kids most of the time. I am sorry to keep posting….this is really helping me, though.
    Thank you.

    • If you can get Legal Aid that will be great. And if he won’t contest it that will be even better. A legal aid attorney is well versed on how to construct things the way they need to be done, is familiar with abuse, and will protect your interests. Where I am I couldn’t get legal aid since they required documented physical violence within the previous 6 months in addition to the lack of income. But I know every place does not have that limitation.

      As far as the children – it varies somewhat from man to man. Mine is actually fairly good. He is faithful with his child support and visitation. He takes her to church and treats her as well as he knows how. But he does do things that are not appropriate – he is still the same person he was, after all. So there are thing we have to address now and then, and I know that he does undermine and disrespect me to her, even though he thinks he isn’t — because that is his heart toward me; it just comes out.

      It is not uncommon at all for abusive ex’s to use the children to try to hurt you. It is very difficult and can be hard on the children. That is reality. I would think, though, if your husband is not going to contest the divorce, he’s less likely to be aggressive through the children afterwards. We can hope! And if not, you may benefit by connecting with other women who are experiencing the same things. I know the forums at Hidden Hurt (linked in the right sidebar) have some of this (this is not a primarily or overtly Christian site, just so you know). You can also check out the other support forums listed. I also know there are regular readers here who deal with, and have dealt with, this situation. So if it comes to that, I know I can connect you to others.

      No apologies for continuing to post!!! That’s what it’s here for. And I can guarantee that every question you ask is something many others want to know but won’t post. So it doesn’t just help you.

      — Danni

  7. Thank you. I will be looking into the Legal Aid and hope that the documentation of physical violence doesn’t apply here in this state. Hopefully they will be able to help. Otherwise I will have to find another way.
    Just to encourage other readers…..I wanted to share something. About a month and a half ago, I felt that I needed to have some cash of my own (something that I’ve never had in this marriage). I talked with an Associate Pastor at my church and asked him if it was o.k. to start putting money back without telling my husband. He said that he did not think that it was right because it would not be honest and some other reason which I actually can’t remember right now. I agreed and did feel that it would be dishonest of me to take any money for myself out of our joint account when we already can’t pay the bills anyway. (This was just my conviction.) Then about 2 wks after this, I felt that I needed to have some of my own cash once again. Not to spend on myself, but because my future was unsure. I was astonished to realize that I had checks in my purse from my birthday that I still had not cashed. Immediately I knew that God had provided the start of my “personal emergency fund” without me even needing to take money out of the account! Since then I have had cash given to me by people who have no idea what is going on. And one of them (my aunt) even specifically told me not to tell my husband about the cash she gave me. I just received a card in the mail with a $100 bill in it. No special reason-the card was just a “Thinking of You” card from a cousin who has never written or telephoned me before in my entire life!!! I now have a small nest egg saved up and have not had to take any money out of our joint account! None of this money has come from my husband–it has all been gifts that were intended just for me! Boy, does God love me! It truly shows me that God puts a much greater value on me than my husband does, and He wants to take care of me. I feel loved!

    I know He will provide. He will open doors for me and my children. Amen.

    • Awesome! Thank you so much for sharing that!!! You’re right – God is going before and providing for you.

      — Danni

  8. Got phone call couple of days ago from ex daughter in law: Ex due to all of her adulteries while married to my son, who is living alone and raising their two babies.
    She felt that she had to call and share with me, that my ex had followed her all over town, and into an establishment, where he started conversation with her. Making mention that she was looking “cute” and wearing shorts and halter top…..
    He is 61 and she is 26…..
    He then gave her his phone number and had told her ” she should call him sometime and that he would love to hear from her and would like to get together with her”
    Stunned by my silence she went on with ” wouldn’;t that be something to tell the kids, kids this is grandpa but daddy too”
    I am stunned….and at loss for words here …
    Do these abusers try seduce daughter in laws? Why is she so taken with him, or so it would appear?
    I feel that since he was so bold in doing this, and she was so bold in telling me, the only one that has not been bold is me…..
    I am thinking I need the boldness to ask her if she was one of his adulteries……
    How amazing that for the past 8 mos. everytime I would ask the Lord to reveal who these women were…this daughter in law always came to the spirit….I would push it back and say no, that can’t be….
    Now I am beginning to wonder and thinking that it could be.
    I could ask if they are that sick and demented to do something like this, but I already know the answer in that the Lord says , that depraved mind and following after their own lusts of the flesh……
    Any insight?

  9. I was in an abusive relationship for 11+ years. I have 4 beautiful children (11, 10 and twin 7 year old boys) and my not-yet-ex was a youth pastor. I was emotionally and verbally abused mostly, but also physically, sexually and most hurtful – spiritually abused for about 9 of the almost 12 years of marriage). I had left him (took the boys) in Nov 2005, not to divorce, but work on his alcohol addiction and “wake him up” that he was abusive. We recieved counceling (I did mostly) and I returned 6 months later. By Nov 2007, the abuse to me and alcohol abuse to himself (plus not taking care of his diabetes) escalated and I asked him to move out. I had prayed for the prior 4 years of what to do and decided to file for divorce in Dec 2007. He has refused to sign the papers, so this coming Nov 2009 will be 2 years (must wait 2 years in PA). He has lost his job, has been on unemployment for 16 months, has no vehicle, got a DUI, is living in the house -its a disgusting the mess – even the boys hate going there – he refused to sign for a short sale with me on and it is now in foreclosure (the kids and I moved out and are doing well in a rental).

    Thankfully, God has blessed me with a full time teaching job – there are so many women in my situation who are unable to cover the expenses on their own and are forced to stay. I have taken myself and boys to counceling since Dec 2007 – and have had to go through a custody court hearings when he took my 7 year old twins and refused to let me have them back and kept them out of school for 2 days. I now have full legal and physical custody of them.

    YET he still says – DAILY – “why are you doing this? Do what’s right for the boys. You have no right to divorce me” (youth pastor – knows his Biblical rights as he sees them in Matt – I’ve pointed out Malachi, and pornography, abandonment, neglect, oneness…)

    I am struggling with one issue – after 16 months of this crap, a wonderful Christian man whom I’ve know his parents for 7 years, has come into my life. We have taken our friendship very slowly, bacause I am still “married” by the law. I asked for a divorce almost 2 years ago. My not-yet-ex keeps asking me if Im having an affair and is attempting to confuse my children. I remain positive about their father to them and encourage them to spend time with him. I vowed not to bad mouth him to them – He loves them and they need to love him and respect him (it’s getting harder for the older ones to do that – they saw too much of the abuse and have seen their father make no gains) I have spoken to my councelor and pastor and they are aware of my new gentleman friend, Chirs…. Chris and I are just pursuing a “friendship” but my kids see my happiness and are asking if we are dating…. I am hanging on till the divorce is final till we move any further (and with my 4 and his 2 kids – we will be moving at a snail’s pace anyway! WAY to much blending – could take till they are all in college!)

    Any thoughts??

    • My thoughts — you are right on target. You’ve handled it right all along and you’re handling the new relationship correctly as well. Taking it slow is wise anyway, whether or not your divorce was finalized.

      I can also identify with the issue of honoring the children’s father to them and encouraging that relationship. However, when they get to about puberty (the ability to think and reason abstractly) they start to see things on their own and their relationship with the parent changes by itself. I think at this point it becomes even more important to honor their father to them, to teach them that it is possible to honor and respect someone who does wrong, even while we do not have to condone, participate in, or allow their behavior to include us personally. This is a life lesson that’s important to learn.

      — Danni

  10. I am thankful for the wise insight into this issue. My daughter has come to believe that the only way a person is to divorce is if the other spouse should die. I believe she has picked this belief up from what she has been taught at her Bible College that she is attending. I am prayerful that she could read this article when she gets home in September for a 3 month rest. This article gives me the strength to move forward and not look back. The only reason to look back is to share the abuse with others so that they may LEARN from our (my) mistakes and avoid the snare that they themselves may be in (ABUSE).

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