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I'm trying hard to build a better relationship with God and have faith. My only wife of 27 years left 10 months ago. We have 3 fine teenagers. She had tried to leave months prior, but stayed after a long talk and really let her know I love her. I didn't beg or plead then, but tried to understand her feelings. She told me I had not tried around the house very well. I had been doing most everything, cooking, helping with cleaning, yardwork, etc. with little help from her, but at least together when she wanted to. I've been very involved with coaching our kid's sports teams, working hard, and creating family fun times. I love her family and help or get involved when called to. While I was shocked that she wanted to leave, I tried even harder. She began to withdraw more. She left months later anyway with no discussion, no verbal warnings. Shocked all of us. After she left, I've been told (not by her, but through others) I didn't include her enough, but firmly recall she didn't want to be included and let her be. Been labeled controlling. Been told I wasn't considerate of her feelings. Been told I didn't back her in her crisis moments with my real thing controlling family. I tried to be a wishy washy peacemaker, BIG mistake. No cheating, No abuse, no drugs, no addictions. The only real thing (and yes I see these as significant) I see is lack of communication in making her feel more special and some lesser evils like working too late, being late and the occaisional slacking off when I burned out. I never forgot to plan an anniversary or birthday and was good at writing sincere, loving messages.

I've read books (Divorce Busting, Divorce Remedy, Hope for The Separated, The 5 Love Languages and more) and been to Christian MC for all these months. Did the Love Dare (that parts that I could, we've only seen each other 6 times) Its like dealing with a wall. I havent been able to get past goal one, I get no involvement or get shut down. I'm starting the Love Must Be Tough next. Given her acres of space, sometimes no contact for 2 weeks. Tried initiating dates, happy talks and I do not ask her for anything or her whereabouts. I pray every day several times, I read the word twice a day and contemplate on it. She has not told me where her house is, I havent asked. I keep things positive and there have been no blowups. I've put even more effort into helping our teens and strengthening all my relationships.

Now better educated, I recognise hopefully where I made mistakes. She's a sensitive, quiet, considerate and loving person. I could have done a better job and been more sensitive to her now that I know and can realise when things aren't correct for her, not everyone else, but her. I could have done a better job including God in our marriage. She would not go to counseling when she dropped her first bomb and would not when she finally left. I should have immediatly after the first bomb.

She waited 8 months afer leaving to tell me she wants a divorce. I've told her that I will be kind and not be in the way. I believe that God calls us to live in harmony and peace. I will not initate it, nor will I do the footwork. I believe marriage is til death do us part, but I will let her go and move on. I will do all I can to protect our teens from injury- no moving, no changing schools and healthy encouragement to see all in-laws. She says she's happy and her family supports her. She has not taken a thing from the house, even with me asking her to take anything she needs. She wants no help from me. She has a good job. Aside from pleading with her in the first few days, I've not begged her to come back. I'm nearly always kind and gentle and am quuick to apoligise when I consider later that I seemed irritable or dismissive- this was something I realised too late was a problem.

I "got a life" , renewed healthy hobbies like backpacking, dog training and going more places (we live in Colorado) with our teens and my renewed "safe" male friends. Our household finances were a mess but are now in order (she is an accountant, was the bill payer now I am, yes I could have done better here too) I'm a regional sales manager and just completed my best year in 5 years. I help our teens run the household smoothly and step back when I feel they are being smothered.

I guess for the moment, she's done. The only hope I see is being patient enough to wait on God. I'll try Love Must Be Tough and do my best. I'll stick to the 180. Seems like reality is I'll be divorced, but accepting that right now isn't being faithful.


Thanks for letting me vent and reading this long post. Please comment or offer any solutions or criticisms.

I'm tired.
 

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Sounds like you are doing an awesome job. I'm sorry that it is not giving you the results you seek. There must be something missing from what you have described, because it would seem that you would be more at peace rather than tired. You have given it your best shot. Are you happy with the new you? Besides having your wife at your side (let's put that aside and treat it as utopia for now), what else is missing from your life to make you really happy? You have to find that sweet spot, so that your happiness is not tied to your marriage (or any relationship for that matter). At some point you will go through grieving the loss of your marriage, or maybe you are going through that now, which is why you're tired. Keep your faith, but continue to focus on you, and ready to accept whatever God's plan is for your life.
 

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I hear you, I'm Christian, wife agnostic. I worked for 2 years to fix things only to have her revert back and make another huge stupid mistake, and then tell me "I checked out two years ago".

Now I'm trying to trust in God but in reality I'm angry at Him... we are careening towards divorce, she is insisting on it, I have no control and no sense of individuality left.
 

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Notdone,
Is your wife a believer?
 

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Thanks Debster,

What's missing? Hmm. Well, besides my wife, nothing really in this world but being able to share get togethers with my wife's family and ours as a whole. Many are very close friends. I miss those occaisions.

In me, I have to say an even closer relationship with our Lord. I'm working on that. I am beginning to see I'm ok without a woman in my life, even though I do miss my wife alot. Honestly though, if this is over, I will pursue dating. Nothing serious, I do still love women and se them as a gift.

PO12345: I hear you being angry. I'm accepting God doesn't force people, but does provide his word. I'm ok with that and hope I stand strong in other adversities. I think its normal to have those feelings and hard to work through them.

SandC: I've heard my wife confess her belief in God and say she believes in Jesus. We didn't go to church as much as we should have. I could have done a better job leading. I try very hard to provide unconditional love now. Truth is, I withdrew somewaht in face of rejection. Not so now. But Tough Love and the 180 are my only actions left that I know of. I'm not hiding or withdrawing, I'm on when she calls.
 

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I remember just reading the New Testament during break and lunch at work. It was the only thing which took my mind off of my misery and only for short periods of time. I relied on the word and concentrated on understanding it to the best of my ability. I have no children to care for since they are grown. I am alone or should I say, I am alone with God.

I was so angry with God. I can't even express to you in words how I felt. I finally decided I was going to tell Him. I yelled. I hollered. I told Him how angry and hurt I was. I told Him how I felt. When I was done, I felt so relieved, I couldn't believe it.

I told Him I loved Him and trusted Him. Asked Him to never leave me. I finally gave up. I don't want you to think I was suddenly cured or anything. For that moment and until today, I feel closer to Him. He died for me. Just as He died for you.

I eventually realized there was nothing I could do. I had to let God do His work. I would do mine. I would pray for her and for myself and just let things happen that were out of my control. I had to rest in Him as much as I could.

I have a thread: http://talkaboutmarriage.com/politics-religion/63816-peace-inspiration-new-post.html

Go there. Post what you need to get you through, if you want. Let it be a place of peace for you as well. It is for us to find a little rest once in a while. I only ask that you keep to the theme. Read the first post. No one bothers me when I am there. I write what I want to get me through. No one comments. It is a place to be still and contemplate.

I wish I had sage advice. I don't. Good luck and God Bless. It sounds like you are doing all you can.
 

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Is there an OM in the picture?
 

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No other man. I'm pretty sure. No evidence of one-I've done my homework. BUT, there have been sigificant female influences from her closest friends. She claims her family supports her. I know slightly otherwise. They love her unconditionally, but still love me and want me involved with all our kids.
 

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So sad. I wonder how she can reconcile just walking away from a marriage with her so-called Christian beliefs. I say that as a Christian myself. She knows that her vows were not only with you but with God Himself. I wish I could spend a day inside the head of someone like your wife.
 

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I have been doing the 180 and had not had any contact with her for the last 10 days. Today she needed money and started with "I'm sorry to bother you". I listened and assured her it was no problem. Light, friendly, loving familiar tones from me. She was engaging, then ready to go once business at hand was done.

I wish there was more. I hope she made a baby step in appreciating me. Wondering if at some point I should say something about what this is doing to me and our teens. I just don't understand how someone can walk away from a not- perfect- probably hurting- because I'm not a mind reader- thing.
I've acknowledged, owned up, apoligized and kept a confidence only God can provide.

Back to the 180.
 

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Notdone,

I know that this is little consolation, but I admire your perseverance, and it is a blessing to see that you are growing in your relationship with the Lord. Keep praying for your wife and the things that you are doing, 180 and such.

Do you truly feel like you are giving her the real attitude you feel in your heart and head when you do see her on those occasions?

It is good to have close friends support you and help you through this time so that you can have the confidence and support to do an authentic 180.

I pray that the God leads you in all truth, comfort, and love as you push through this trial.
 

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Notdone,

I know that this is little consolation, but I admire your perseverance, and it is a blessing to see that you are growing in your relationship with the Lord. Keep praying for your wife and the things that you are doing, 180 and such.

Do you truly feel like you are giving her the real attitude you feel in your heart and head when you do see her on those occasions?

It is good to have close friends support you and help you through this time so that you can have the confidence and support to do an authentic 180.

I pray that the God leads you in all truth, comfort, and love as you push through this trial.
Thanks for your reply, I appreciate it. I learned this weekend she is "going out on dates" per our teenagers. Why she chose to tell them this first is beyond me. At this point I'm ready to proceed with a divorce. She's been gone now for a long time and we've made no progress. She has not so much a hinted a reconciliation. I'm looking for council on God's answers on whether or not I should not divorce. I do not have a confession from her that sex is involved. Her happy disclosure to our teens was very upsetting to them. It's not as though she has been cut off by me, the communication has been light and friendly but scarce as in once or twice in 2 weeks for a long time. I'm upset with this development, but have chosen to not contact her about it until I'm satisfied with the council I seek, including God's.
 

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If filing for divorce does not wake her up than possibly that is God's answer? I would go ahead and file. You are not Hosea and are not required to be married to an adulterous wife.

One of our church elders is married to a woman who divorced her husband for serial cheating. She is now married to our elder and quite happy.
 

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Thanks, Sandc, I'm not sure if just "going on dates" is adulatory. Do I need to know if sex is involved to claim this before God? I'm coming to the acceptance that desertion may be my grounds before God. For a Christian to initiate divorce is tough, I really need to know God is OK with me doing so. I will pray and hope he provides me with the answer as well. Perhaps he already has...
 

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Thanks, Sandc, I'm not sure if just "going on dates" is adulatory. Do I need to know if sex is involved to claim this before God? I'm coming to the acceptance that desertion may be my grounds before God. For a Christian to initiate divorce is tough, I really need to know God is OK with me doing so. I will pray and hope he provides me with the answer as well. Perhaps he already has...
While I can understand that you don't want to assume the worst you cannot be naive about this. She is not acting in a Christian manner I think it's safe to assume that... she is not acting in a Christian manner.

The whole world has changed for her. Pray for her daily and let God have her. You are no longer responsible for her.
 

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notdone,

To follow scripture is hard. Jesus brought the law of God to become a bigger matter of the heart. Matthew 5:31-32 on the matter of divorce gives permit to divorce for the cause of sexual infidelity.

If she is dating, then she is clearly going on her own and doing her own thing right now... as if you are already divorced. It is assumable that she is committing adultery. If she is barely talking to you, then she probably will not open up about infidelity.

But, I hope that you can get some proof, or at least see that she is covering up adultery.

From what you know about her, who she is as a person, can she look you in the eyes and not show an inkling of guilt about having an affair. Knowing that you are separated, she may feel like it is OK. But, if she were to look you in the eyes and not show obvious guiltiness, while you are still officially married is another thing.

On the occasions that you do talk at present, does she give you any eye contact? You might be able to tell that she is covering up adultery.

I am praying for you and hope that she sees what she is doing is not God's will and that reconciliation can take place. In the 7 Husband Habits video link in my signature box there is a sign up for a free Win Her Back report. In that report I quote a police officer friend of mine who told me some professional ways to look into someone's eyes to see if they are telling the truth or not. I hope that it could be of help to you if you want to try to learn some ways to tell if a loved one is lying or not.

Please let me know how things go as this progresses. It is always good to help one step at a time.
 

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Hi Rough Patch,

Thanks for your advice and prayers. I really appreciate it. Wow, what a roller coaster.

For the moment, I'm hanging in there. I'm waiting on a clear sign from God. At times, I'm ready to move on and file myself. Then I'm not sure if that fits into God's plan. I guess I'll always feel unconditional love for her. Who knows, maybe she is working through depression or other issues and God wants me to stand by. She is not of the character she normally would be. I get that she must have been in pain for sometime before she left unexpectedly and accept my part in that (part not all). It's the unknown that get me emotional. Gradually I'm coming to work through accepting each day and my contribution to or lack of in my own life. That's all I can do. If she's off to someone else, well, I can continue my own progress and become a better man for her now or someone else after the divorce.

The toughest part is coming to believe that its time to file myself or wait.. I doubt she's going to let me have a meeting with her, but I will try for the opportune moment.
 

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notdone,

Wow. I commend you for your patience, temperance, and faithfulness to your wife. You are her husband and you really prove it!

I see that you refuse to put her in a category and then that is that. You are digging deep to try to understand her, even if she is acting like a totally different person. Depression can have that effect.

I am praying that you do not have to end up filing. I am praying that your marriage gets back together. Full reconciliation and becoming better than ever thought possible. With God, that is possible. Prayer is powerful in things like that.

If you do not already consider fasting as something to do in faith, and to get closer to God, then I hardily recommend it!

I am certainly praying for you, brother.

Yours is a labor and trial of love.

I commend you for working to better yourself, and giving her the space she wants. In time, I pray that she sees you as the attractive and irresistible man of her dreams that you were before -- and can be once more.

I pray that trust and commitment is restored, fully. To help you out, I recently wrote this blog post on 4 secrets of re-framing a relationship and re-building trust. It is serious, but also has a surprise story about another Christian man you may have heard of.

He's lost his first marriage, but earned big trust quickly the 2nd time around.

I will be writing a piece on subtle ways to get that casual 1st meeting that can re-frame the relationship in the next day or two. I will let you know when it is done. I write to help. When I get to help someone that I have an active conversation with, I get really excited. But, not because you are going through the ringer, but because I can offer what I have to give.

Please keep us all updated if you can. I will check back more frequently now.

God bless you. You are a man of integrity!
 

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I think you can also ask her to inform you when or if she has sexual relations ,only then can you file

your patience is commendable . Are you going to church as well , when I am stressed I listen to gospel music and my mood changes "I smile"
 

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Psalm 91:14-15

14 Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.

15 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.
 
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