Tuesday, March 17, 2009

**Should I Stay or Should I Go?

I was raised in a very stable family, where no matter what happened in your relationship, you "stayed" for the long run. The word "divorce" was never talked about and no one in our long family line had every used the "D" word out loud...we don’t do "that"...ever...

Well, after 17 years of my own marriage, I wonder about my own mental health, and of course, that of my mother, sisters, aunts, cousins, etc. I’ve seen the struggles of relatives and friends staying in marriages for the children, for their church and for their families...and I’ve seen and experienced the nasty results of divorce, which are tough, dramatic and life changing...but in the long run, they bring such happiness, peace and love to those involved. I believe in God’s rule ...till death do us part..., but we all end up dying sooner (emotionally and mentally) inside, by staying on for the long run.

I’ve been strong, I’ve taken the verbal abuse, the mental abuse, I’ve taken the blame for everything wrong in our world, his life, his job and our marriage. I’m a lover, not a fighter. I have finally realized that being married to a true alcoholic and an abuser is NOT my penance or my cross to bear.

But, every time I threaten the "D" word (and I do have the papers typed up already!), he comes full circle for 2 or 3 days and "tries" to be a better husband. He has quit drinking, but he is still a very depressed and angry person. He won’t get help...he is on anti-depressants and thinks he is fine. Even our friends see how he talks to me in public and have pitty on me. Since I don’t want to fight or be angry like him, I clam up into my own little world.

I have found peace and solitude and happiness, outside my little world, in the arms and care of my friends, some are my wonderful close girlfriends and some are close guy friends. My sanity is important to me because I don’t want to age mentally from his constant abuse. The meaner he is...the faster I run, call, text and Facebook my friends...what do I do? Do I stay or do I go? Isn’t it all about ME? Or at least about ME and GOD? Not him.

My motto has always been, "It’s my life, It’s now or never" (I’m sure you heard those words in a Bon Jovi song), but I’ve never acted on the words, even though they are strong and banging around non-stop in my head.

Is it wrong to want more emotionally than I have? Is it wrong to want true love? Is it wrong to desire a partner that goes to Church with me every week? Is it wrong to want a best friend and a passionate lover for a husband? I dream, every night of a romantic, story tale life...I have so much to give emotionally, but my husband does not see it in his fog of depression, anger and alcoholism.

I have one foot out the door..."should I stay or should I go"?

-Guest Blogger: "Lost In Love"


Anonymous said...

You are a much stronger person than I. In fact I would have left years ago. Nobody should have to go through that. If it were me I would just say lessons learned and get the divorce on the road. Good luck.

Sazaran said...

Boy, oh boy, lady- you're in a tough spot. But, you're not alone! Woman all over the WORLD want more from their husbands; enter, sin.

I, personally, believe that marriege is until natural death. But, who says it's black and white? I also believe that if one partner refuses to put effort into a marriage- I mean, refuses as in the sense of: knows what needs to be done but doesn't want to do it- that the other has "reason" to leave.

I am not God, so I cannot tell you if that is His will. But, I can tell you that His grace is sufficient for you (and where sin abounds, His grace abounds all the more).

I'm prayin' for ya, whoever you may be ;)

Anonymous said...

Imagine this post was written by one of the women in your life that you love. What would you tell them to do?


iVillage has hundreds of message boards filled with women who are either in exactly the same position as you are right now, or have been there once before; sometimes, all you need is a little push in one direction or another from someone who understands what it's like to be in your shoes. The women on these boards are wonderful confidants and supporters. Here's a few I think you might find helpful:

Should I Stay or Should I Go?: http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-rlshouldista

Toxic Relationships: http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-rltoxicrelat

Surviving Divorce: http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-rlsmartdivor

Sazaran said...

P.S. I'd like to add something else.

God is bigger.

Also, 2 Timothy 1:7 says, "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."

So, if this is something that you want to work out- hang in there and trust that the LORD will sustain you, emotionally and mentally. And, in the end, if you choose to stay (and he chooses to work on your relationship, like a man should) your rewards will be greater than you could have anticipated.

A scar is the result of trama, but it is stronger than it was previously.

Anonymous said...

Before I offer my humble opinion on the matter you should know I am both a single guy and a strong Christian, which makes me pretty unqualified! Also its based on the assumption that everything you wrote is 100% true and objective... even though I know it isn't. Without knowing your husband any suggestions are clouded at best. The ones to help you best are probably those who know you and him both. If even his friends are telling you to leave him then you probably should!

Your questions in the post were (broadly):

Isn't it all about me, or at least me and God? Not him.

Is it wrong to want more emotionally than I have/true love/a better partner?

Should I stay or should I go?

1. Matthew 19 jumps into the issue of divorce and Christ's point about the law is that divorce was permitted due to the hardness of men's (males) hearts. His point is not that divorce is adultery and therefore always a "no". His point is that it was an allowance made because human's have a propensity for sin but was never God's best (set in creation). Nowadays divorce initiated by women is legal and so the same would apply to women. The best way for us to live is with commitment. But this commitment is not upheld by external law but by the law in our hearts.

The answer to your question is that every decision you make is about everyone. You have to take responsibility for every decision you make and that will include whether you stay or leave. If you stay you are responsible for the consequences and cannot be certain that he will ever be different. If you leave the same applies. God will love you either way.

A final thought about sin: Sin has been defeated. Sin is no longer the big issue for Christians, the pursuit of righteousness, goodness and love (in a broad sense) is. Don't base your decision on an external religious law if it isn't written on your heart. Which decision brings more love, righteousness and goodness into the world for you, him and everybody else? That's the question to ask.

2. It's not wrong to desire those things. We all desire our dreams. Selfishness is what's wrong. How you pursue these things and at what cost are the issues. No man is perfect and leaving a man for not being what you want is the same as a man leaving a woman for not looking how he wants. But I don't think that's the issue here. Was he different when you married him? If he was the same then then you must shoulder some of the blame for marrying him. Not that that means you have to stay. That's the past. If he has become this way now then he is no longer the man you married.

The more I write the less qualified I feel to advise. I think that either path will be very difficult. I will pray for you.

3. This is one question I don't even want to attempt to answer. All I will say is make sure your decision is based on the right foundation. The wrong foundations are: guilt, duty, hurt, anger, frustration, pity, parents voices in your head, fantasies and dreams. The right foundations are: love, self-respect, wisdom and righteousness. Your future is uncertain whichever way you go. I pray you will have strength in either case.


Anonymous said...

Wow. Sits back in seat and breathes for the first time whilst reading that entire reply.

Well said.

You're right, you arent qualified to give the advice, but you didnt advise, you offered your knowledge and life experience, and offered to pray for her pain and decisions.


Anonymous said...

He is not the same man I married...it's as if the devil changed him in the past 10 years of our 17 years together.

Thank you all for your advice...I pray every day and soul search for a right (if there is a "right") decision on my part. I hurt daily, almost hourly...whether from his mental and verbal abuse, or from trying to make a decision that (either way) will change the rest of my life...good or bad.

Love in Love...

Anonymous said...

I admire your openness. I think you are much stronger than you give yourself credit for. Speaking from similar experiences in my life and despite the fact that we don't know eachother, nor do I know anymore details but the ones in your post...I say go. There is no worse feeling in the world than to know in your heart (we, myself included, avoid knowing) what you need to do, but just struggle taking that big step. YOUR life is all about YOU. This was a concept that took me a while to really understand and act upon. All of the things you want, you deserve. Not to say the struggles of getting there aren't great, they are. But you seem to have the strength and love in your heart to make it out and start living for you. If for nothing else...for the sole reason of waking up every morning smiling, happy that you've found a new level of aliveness. We all deserve that. Again, just speaking from experience and the lesson's i've learned. I will pray for you, best of luck!

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