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I would like to try to take a broader perspective on this situation for you. I failed to love, honor and cherish my wife. I want to make that abundantly clear. No excuses. I failed.

I tried to love my wife unconditionally. I really did. God knows I did. I still love her. I will always love her. My failing was not that I withdrew my love, it was that my love fell short. Along with the love, there was criticism for needs not met over and over and over again. Why could I not just let these things go? I do not know. I think I was asking to be loved, for her to care enough to do those things.

I was very unhappy. My wife was withdrawing as the years went by. She withdrew from nearly all household tasks, when she took a turn at laundry, mine was left in the basket or shoved in the dresser drawer instead of properly put away as we had always done. She withdrew from my birthday and our anniversary. She withdrew her intimacy all together over that last two years. This was her response to my criticism. I share it because it hurt. It hurt so badly that it is hard to explain. It was like a black hole opened up in my soul and all the love of our life together was being sucked down into it.

I really hate the casual perspective that people seem to have toward divorce. As a Christian, while I have failed miserably in some ways, I have not failed to understand the permanence of my marriage commitment. God hates divorce is not a cliche. Marriage is the knitting together of two people for life. One might just as well attempt to cut a sweater in half as to try to undo a marriage. Divorce destroys. Life will almost certainly throw at us things that will make the marriage relationship challenging at times. Perhaps a spouse gets an illness that requires their partner to become their caregiver for 20 years. Maybe a series of losses causes financial ruin. There are so many scenarios where we could conclude that God would not expect us to suffer any more of the unbearable pain. While God certainly provides the grace to forgive us for walking away from our commitment, our exit from what was created to be permanent is a destructive act.
I think you are forgetting that NOT EVERYONE is Christian and believes that "god" hates divorce. Some people think religion and god are a bunch of made up hooey. That's why everyone isn't nodding their heads in agreement with you. Perhaps you would also like a Christian forum.
 

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Discussion Starter #82
I think you are forgetting that NOT EVERYONE is Christian and believes that "god" hates divorce. Some people think religion and god are a bunch of made up hooey. That's why everyone isn't nodding their heads in agreement with you. Perhaps you would also like a Christian forum.
Not expecting a Christian forum. If someone brings up the Christian perspective as it was presented by me, then one would expect that the responder would take the time to understand what the Christian believes on the matter. My wife and I are Christians. You do not have to be a Christian. You do not have to hold a Christian perspective on marriage for yourself. I am not dismissing how you choose to view your marriage. Is it not reasonable for me to expect others not to dismiss my religious views as they pertain to myself and my wife in our marriage? I am not participating in a discussion on secular marriage, but my Christian marriage.
 

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Not expecting a Christian forum. If someone brings up the Christian perspective as it was presented by me, then one would expect that the responder would take the time to understand what the Christian believes on the matter. My wife and I are Christians. You do not have to be a Christian. You do not have to hold a Christian perspective on marriage for yourself. I am not dismissing how you choose to view your marriage. Is it not reasonable for me to expect others not to dismiss my religious views as they pertain to myself and my wife in our marriage? I am not participating in a discussion on secular marriage, but my Christian marriage.
Will God forgive you for the dissolution of your marriage?
 

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I am not dissolving my marriage. I have made every attempt to stay in the marriage.

The answer is yes. God forgives us. That is my understanding anyway.

I am not certain that I am released from my covenant though. I must do my best to love her. I do not see myself as having permission to enter into another relationship. That is a difficult perspective, but for now I plan to hold to it. It is difficult to find one's self alone in the world after what feels like a lifetime with a wife.
 

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I am not dissolving my marriage. I have made every attempt to stay in the marriage.

The answer is yes. God forgives us. That is my understanding anyway.

I am not certain that I am released from my covenant though. I must do my best to love her. I do not see myself as having permission to enter into another relationship. That is a difficult perspective, but for now I plan to hold to it. It is difficult to find one's self alone in the world after what feels like a lifetime with a wife.
Oh I completely understand. My marriage for all intents and purposes is over after 30 years. You believe God would want you alone for the rest of your life?
 

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I am not dissolving my marriage. I have made every attempt to stay in the marriage.

The answer is yes. God forgives us. That is my understanding anyway.

I am not certain that I am released from my covenant though. I must do my best to love her. I do not see myself as having permission to enter into another relationship. That is a difficult perspective, but for now I plan to hold to it. It is difficult to find one's self alone in the world after what feels like a lifetime with a wife.
Your wife does not share your view.
 

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Your wife does not share your view.
She has no plans to seek a new partner. Her perspective was that God would not want her to go on suffering. I agree that God would not want either of us to be suffering like we were. The solution is repair and not divorce. We disagree on that. The reason may be that we know one another well and we know what has pushed us apart. Both of us were in for difficult changes if we were to fix things. I realize that. She had some denial in that area, stating that it was all my fault. In the sense that I realized that we needed to make changes to stay healthy as we aged and she did not we were not on the same page.
 

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Oh I completely understand. My marriage for all intents and purposes is over after 30 years. You believe God would want you alone for the rest of your life?
It is not that I believe that God would want me to be alone, but that the covenant is the covenant. I would not be alone if I did not screw things up. God will forgive me if I do not hold to the commitment, but I am hoping to stay true to it. It's easy to live a comfortable theology that meets my personal needs. I intended to do better in my marriage. I have the opportunity to do better in my efforts to grow in God's spirt in the wake of my failure.
 

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It is not that I believe that God would want me to be alone, but that the covenant is the covenant. I would not be alone if I did not screw things up. God will forgive me if I do not hold to the commitment, but I am hoping to stay true to it. It's easy to live a comfortable theology that meets my personal needs. I intended to do better in my marriage. I have the opportunity to do better in my efforts to grow in God's spirt in the wake of my failure.
I suppose if it is easy to live a comfortable theology that meets your personal needs than there really is not an issue. Agonizing over the rules that have been placed for you isn’t worth it.
 

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On its face this may seem to be true, but it may not be the case. God is not about rules, but the nature of his being. I have not thoroughly considered this yet. I have been immersed in grief until very recently. It may very well be that if I must still do what I can do to honor my covenant, there is no place for another person. How could they enter in where they could not receive a complete commitment to them? If God's intent is for two people to be together for life and we walk away from that arrangement, there is spiritual fallout. The way I see it, denying the spiritual truth of the situation may provide some initial peace of mind, but it does not change reality.

I am far too new to this situation to have a good grasp on it. I can tell you that I am not foolish enough to think that seeking a woman to fill the void in my life right now would be a good idea. That much is clear. Often what seems comfortable and right to meet our needs is definitely not what is best. Seeking truth and walking in it requires some patience and understanding.
 

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I would like to try to take a broader perspective on this situation for you. I failed to love, honor and cherish my wife. I want to make that abundantly clear. No excuses. I failed.

I tried to love my wife unconditionally. I really did. God knows I did. I still love her. I will always love her. My failing was not that I withdrew my love, it was that my love fell short. Along with the love, there was criticism for needs not met over and over and over again. Why could I not just let these things go? I do not know. I think I was asking to be loved, for her to care enough to do those things.

I was very unhappy. My wife was withdrawing as the years went by. She withdrew from nearly all household tasks, when she took a turn at laundry, mine was left in the basket or shoved in the dresser drawer instead of properly put away as we had always done. She withdrew from my birthday and our anniversary. She withdrew her intimacy all together over that last two years. This was her response to my criticism. I share it because it hurt. It hurt so badly that it is hard to explain. It was like a black hole opened up in my soul and all the love of our life together was being sucked down into it.

I really hate the casual perspective that people seem to have toward divorce. As a Christian, while I have failed miserably in some ways, I have not failed to understand the permanence of my marriage commitment. God hates divorce is not a cliche. Marriage is the knitting together of two people for life. One might just as well attempt to cut a sweater in half as to try to undo a marriage. Divorce destroys. Life will almost certainly throw at us things that will make the marriage relationship challenging at times. Perhaps a spouse gets an illness that requires their partner to become their caregiver for 20 years. Maybe a series of losses causes financial ruin. There are so many scenarios where we could conclude that God would not expect us to suffer any more of the unbearable pain. While God certainly provides the grace to forgive us for walking away from our commitment, our exit from what was created to be permanent is a destructive act.

I'm sure it was very painful. The stuff you describe is painful to read, and it reeks of a big fat **** you from a wife who for whatever reason wasn't able to communicate with you.

Whether it was because you steamroll her, which I suspect was at least part of it based on your posts, or she was just conflict avoidant (I sympathize if that's what you dealt with because my ex was this way) your wife was communicating in her own nasty way.

You responded with more nastiness, and the cycle continued.

So yes, in that sense you both contributed. But the damage done was not equal because her self worth was chipped away and she does't see you aa a safe partner. That is typically impossible to come back from. As a woman I understand this in ways you clearly don't because your emotional needs are different.

For you, I sense that if she'd started contributing and thrown some intimacy your way you'd have recovered just fine. Men often process and receive things differently.

None of this matters if you're going to be divorced.....I'm bringing these things up to try to help with your anger. There is a certain sense of entitlement here and you don't seem to comprehend that your wife isn't you and doesn't respond like you. For her this may not be repairable, and after 37 years I would think you'd know your wife well enough to know this.

Maybe you need more time to process this and that's ok. But understand that even if you talked her out if a divorce she doesn't love you and you're likely not going to get what you want. So what then? Just keep picking at her as your frustration and anger grows?

And at the end of the day she still won't want the lifestyle you want so what would you end up with?

Sounds like a terrible way to live.
 

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I'm sure it was very painful. The stuff you describe is painful to read, and it reeks of a big fat **** you from a wife who for whatever reason wasn't able to communicate with you.

Whether it was because you steamroll her, which I suspect was at least part of it based on your posts, or she was just conflict avoidant (I sympathize if that's what you dealt with because my ex was this way) your wife was communicating in her own nasty way.

You responded with more nastiness, and the cycle continued.

So yes, in that sense you both contributed. But the damage done was not equal because her self worth was chipped away and she does't see you aa a safe partner. That is typically impossible to come back from. As a woman I understand this in ways you clearly don't because your emotional needs are different.

For you, I sense that if she'd started contributing and thrown some intimacy your way you'd have recovered just fine. Men often process and receive things differently.

None of this matters if you're going to be divorced.....I'm bringing these things up to try to help with your anger. There is a certain sense of entitlement here and you don't seem to comprehend that your wife isn't you and doesn't respond like you. For her this may not be repairable, and after 37 years I would think you'd know your wife well enough to know this.

Maybe you need more time to process this and that's ok. But understand that even if you talked her out if a divorce she doesn't love you and you're likely not going to get what you want. So what then? Just keep picking at her as your frustration and anger grows?

And at the end of the day she still won't want the lifestyle you want so what would you end up with?

Sounds like a terrible way to live.
I hear you.

I shared in another post that the divorced women from whom I sought counsel all shared with me that when a woman removes intimacy because she feels hurt beyond recovery, that there is no way she will ever allow that level of vulnerability ever again with that person. She's out for good. I can accept this, even if I do not totally understand it.

It looks like I have some learning to do about this subject. Ultimately, the goal is to never end up at that point. Maintaining a positive relationship with lots of appreciation and a deep friendship coversa multitude of slip ups. We had that for years. I am deeply saddened by the loss.
 

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I hear you.

I shared in another post that the divorced women from whom I sought counsel all shared with me that when a woman removes intimacy because she feels hurt beyond recovery, that there is no way she will ever allow that level of vulnerability ever again with that person. She's out for good. I can accept this, even if I do not totally understand it.

It looks like I have some learning to do about this subject. Ultimately, the goal is to never end up at that point. Maintaining a positive relationship with lots of appreciation and a deep friendship coversa multitude of slip ups. We had that for years. I am deeply saddened by the loss.
And for that I am truly sorry.

Since you are a man of faith try to remember that sometimes in our arrogance (and we all do it) we assume we actually know what God wants and it is often what we want. We pray for Him to do x, y, or z for us.

But us Jews accept that we don't always know what God has planned for us so we do the best we can and understand that many things are out of our control.

That's where the joke about Jews answers questions with more questions cones from.

Trust that God will work this out, even if its not the way you think He will or want Him to.
 

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She has no plans to seek a new partner. Her perspective was that God would not want her to go on suffering. I agree that God would not want either of us to be suffering like we were. The solution is repair and not divorce. We disagree on that. The reason may be that we know one another well and we know what has pushed us apart. Both of us were in for difficult changes if we were to fix things. I realize that. She had some denial in that area, stating that it was all my fault. In the sense that I realized that we needed to make changes to stay healthy as we aged and she did not we were not on the same page.
Sadly, but in the long run it's better for you, you have to accept, today, that she's quit. Period.

Odds are you'll never know the real, true reason, her putting it all on you is part of her strategy.

It's telling on her part that she's planned this for a while that she wrongfully has been playing g on your emotions without concern about your feelings.

Don't pay her attorney fees. Don't pay her anything else, cut her off from all funds you can. Or she'll beat you to it and continue to screw you.

It's hard, admit and embrace that, but accept you can't change it. Grieve yes, but absolutely protect yourself.

Start forcing her to embrace her non marital support soonest.
 

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And for that I am truly sorry.

Since you are a man of faith try to remember that sometimes in our arrogance (and we all do it) we assume we actually know what God wants and it is often what we want. We pray for Him to do x, y, or z for us.

But us Jews accept that we don't always know what God has planned for us so we do the best we can and understand that many things are out of our control.

That's where the joke about Jews answers questions with more questions cones from.

Trust that God will work this out, even if its not the way you think He will or want Him to.
I think that our faith experience is similar in this regard.

We pray for our will and that is not remotely within the full knowledge of God and how he responds.

I have let go of my spouse in the sense that we will ever be together again and I will eventually let go of my hurt. My grief has subsided to the point where I am not at death's door daily. I am thankful for that.

The journey to seek God goes on. It is a journey of questions much more so that easy answers.
 

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Sadly, but in the long run it's better for you, you have to accept, today, that she's quit. Period.

Odds are you'll never know the real, true reason, her putting it all on you is part of her strategy.

It's telling on her part that she's planned this for a while that she wrongfully has been playing g on your emotions without concern about your feelings.

Don't pay her attorney fees. Don't pay her anything else, cut her off from all funds you can. Or she'll beat you to it and continue to screw you.

It's hard, admit and embrace that, but accept you can't change it. Grieve yes, but absolutely protect yourself.

Start forcing her to embrace her non marital support soonest.
There is no way out of the whole settlement situation. I maxed out my credit with my attorney. I have no employment. Finding more money and continuing the fight is likely to end in a settlement for a smaller amount while attorney fees skyrocket to negate any financial benefit. This was a long marriage and she did spend some time home with the kids. A judge may give her something for that. I am not trying to cheat her. I want closure. The pain has been unbearable. I need it to stop.
 

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I think that our faith experience is similar in this regard.

We pray for our will and that is not remotely within the full knowledge of God and how he responds.

I have let go of my spouse in the sense that we will ever be together again and I will eventually let go of my hurt. My grief has subsided to the point where I am not at death's door daily. I am thankful for that.

The journey to seek God goes on. It is a journey of questions much more so that easy answers.
My father spoke fluent Yiddish and he had a saying that translates to "man plans and God laughs".
 

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There is no way out of the whole settlement situation. I maxed out my credit with my attorney. I have no employment. Finding more money and continuing the fight is likely to end in a settlement for a smaller amount while attorney fees skyrocket to negate any financial benefit. This was a long marriage and she did spend some time home with the kids. A judge may give her something for that. I am not trying to cheat her. I want closure. The pain has been unbearable. I need it to stop.
Hang in there. You can do it.
Easier said than done but a must do.

Courage my friend.

Just remember she is no longer your ally or friend, she doesn't have your welfare as her priority.
 

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Then when that doesn't work we end up with how God hates divorce. That one seems to get invoked a lot when one treats their spouse poorly but doesn't want a divorce. That's why you not only promise to stay married but also to love, honor, and cherish your spouse. Too often people focus on the staying married part but conveniently forget the rest.
Word.
 

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Not expecting a Christian forum. If someone brings up the Christian perspective as it was presented by me, then one would expect that the responder would take the time to understand what the Christian believes on the matter. My wife and I are Christians. You do not have to be a Christian. You do not have to hold a Christian perspective on marriage for yourself. I am not dismissing how you choose to view your marriage. Is it not reasonable for me to expect others not to dismiss my religious views as they pertain to myself and my wife in our marriage? I am not participating in a discussion on secular marriage, but my Christian marriage.
As a fellow Christian, I would like to propose that the WS, BS, offending spouse, whatever he/she is, may often use their "Christianity" as proof, in some strange way, that their marriage is OK. That they're not screwing up. A false sense of security that allows them to completely overlook their own issues. Allows them to truly believe they are in a happy marriage, without taking into consideration the views of their partner. That the fact that they have been married for 10, 17, 25, 40 years... that that alone is proof of a good or happy marriage.

It is so weird. But I think I'm seeing some of this in your own writings.
 
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