If You MUST Separate – Use Structure and Rules

must separate - Graphic stock _rFPnTbAHo copyThere are times as a married couple that you feel you must separate to be able to work on resolving your conflicts.

Must Separate?

Sarah considered herself a high-need wife with a large love tank. “We just don’t come together intimately enough in my opinion —physically,” she told me.

She asked what I thought about her taking some time away from the marriage with the goal of reconciliation. I said that separation is always potentially dangerous. When you’re in an uncomfortable situation, and you decide to take a break from it for awhile, you think, Why do I ever want to go back into that again when I’m doing okay out here?

If there’s going to be a separation, I always recommend it to be done under good counsel with structure and rules involved. For example, while we’re separated, we agree to:

Separation Agreements:

We agree there’s not going to be any outside dating.

The agreement is to separate for the purpose of really working on the relationship

We’ll hold ourselves accountable to a process. This is so we don’t get sidetracked with our new feelings.

The goal for the separation should always be to reconcile or restore the relationship. People sometimes think, If I could just dump this guy (or girl) and get with someone else, I’d be happier. It happens a lot. When needs aren’t being met, the tendency may be to just move on instead of trying to address the issues in a healthy way.

Changing Partners Is Not the Answer

But these same people often find that running away doesn’t solve problems. Unless issues are aired and dealt with, you’ll probably experience the same type of unsatisfying relationship again and again. Changing partners is not the answer.

Of course, it’s a different matter if there’s obvious physical danger or serious emotional danger for yourself or your children. Then, separation is for survival.

This article comes from the book, Starved for Affection -written by Dr Randy Carlson, published by Tyndale House Publishers. In this book you’ll find practical help and encouragement to strengthen your connection with your mate in all aspects of your relationship.

Dr Carlson is a licensed marriage and family therapist. He hosts OnCall —with Dr. Randy Carlson.

— ALSO —

Here are a few more important points to prayerfully consider at this difficult time in your life. Here are a few tips that Dr David B. Hawkins gives to those who believe they should go through a time of separation. It’s important to note:

“A temporary, time-limited separation can be a healthy process if conducted with clear and appropriate guidelines. But, both must adhere to those guidelines. Let’s consider what those might be:

• “First, the separation should be done under the leadership of someone trustworthy. 

This could be your pastor, to ensure steps are taken to make the time apart productive and not divisive. A weekly check-in time should be done with this person. This is to make certain you are using the time as effectively as possible.

• “Second, it must be made clear that this is going to be a ‘therapeutic separation.’

Everything about it is done for the purpose of ultimately restoring the marriage. While there may be a ‘time out’ from one another, the ‘time out’ is set up to strengthen weaknesses in the marriage. This way you can come back together stronger than ever. Counsel should be sought, both individually and as a couple, to heal wounded areas. Books on communication and healthy conflict could be read and discussed to strengthen the relationship. Each party must take full responsibility for their failures in the marriage.

• “Third, during the ‘therapeutic separation,’ there should not be alone time with members of the opposite sex.

It is too tempting to engage in quasi, or overtly sexual behaviour, out of a need for attention and affection. Hedges of protection must be built around the marriage. It is very normal for the grass to look greener during times of intense conflict. Don’t be swayed into thinking this is reality.” (Dr David Hawkins, from the Crosswalk Question and Answer article “Can a Separation Be Healthy for a Struggling Marriage?“)


Anne Bercht makes these points concerning this issue:

“Be warned: There is no microwave solution for a marriage diseased to the point of separation.

“Do not assume that your separation will lead to divorce. It can, just as easily lead to a stronger, happier, more fulfilling marriage than you even imagine possible. An ancient sage once said, ‘The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.’ Your job: Take the first step.

“Separation after an affair [or for any reason] can lead to restoration, and the pain you are presently feeling can be likened to labor pains that give birth to a new life. Where your separation leads you depends on what you (and your spouse) think, do, say and believe over the coming days, weeks and months.”

If you have additional tips to help others, please “Join the Discussion” by adding your comments below.

Print Post

Filed under: Separation and Divorce

Join the Discussion

Please observe the following guidelines:

  • Try to be as positive as possible when you make a comment.
  • If there is name-calling, or profane language, it will be deleted.
  • The same goes with hurtful comments targeted at belittling others; we won't post them.
  • Recommendations for people to divorce will be edited out–that's a decision between them and God, not us.
  • If you have a criticism, please make it constructive.
  • Be mindful that this is an international ministry where cultural differences need to be considered.
  • Please honor the fact this is a Christ-centered web site.

We review all comments before posting them to reduce spam and offensive content.


19 responses to “If You MUST Separate – Use Structure and Rules

  1. (UK) What if the partner in a marriage is not willing to talk, has violently assaulted the other spouse a number of times, says berating, unkind and degrading word always, sees the spouse always as the wrong person and does not deny marrying the spouse for a wrong reason other than love? Should she continue in that situation or separate to regain her self esteem? He is emotionally detached and would not admit to his faults. He would not even agree to go for counselling or see a pastor and considers her action in doing so a crime against him.

  2. (SOUTH AFRICA) Yesterday I made a decision that I’m getting a divorce after being emotionally abused for 4 years by my husband who’s a perfectionist. He never sees anything good in me or even any other person. He resents my daughter and my maiden family for no reason and our home has become as cold as a mortuary-not the life I had in mind when I was younger.

    After reading the articles on this website about separation I think this could be exactly what I need -to be emotionally calm and be rational to see if it’s really what I want. We have already gone through counseling and even the psychologist diagnosed a problem in him. I am going to propose separation to him and believe that he’ll agree. I depend upon the power of God to turn my life around in Jesus’ name!

  3. (USA) I have been in a marriage for 10 years. We have 1 daughter who I stay at home with. I recently found out that my husband who is 33 years old has been having a affair with an 18 year old girl. We have separated since. I have so much anger I can’t even see straight. I’ve tried taking the high road try to be civil, even nice.

    I’ve had it. I have so much hatred for what he has done and continues to do, I am beside myself. Most of all, it’s so sad to see my little girls hearts break. He doesn’t want to try to work it out. He wants to STAY WITH HIS LITTLE GIRLFRIEND. I need a crash course on how to work through this anger. Any suggestions?

  4. (SA)  I met my husband at high school. We have been together for 20 yrs and married for 6 yrs. 2005 I resigned and went to study full time, the very same month he also got a new job and has to relocate. Because I have already made the decision of starting a new career, we decided that he will leave us (me and our two boys) behind.

    On the 10th of February this year he called me after 9 at night and told me that he had a three yr old child, he is tired of leaving a double life. He regrets what he has done because I have been questioning him and he was denying everything. He met this lady where he was working before in 2004. Whatever decision I make he will support it and he won’t interfere with the house, he will support me and the children. The first thing that came into my mind was “oh GOD here is another failed marriage in my family, how will I explain this to my younger family members who see me as their role model”? I just said ok and he hung up the phone and never called until the next evening.

    Before calling he sent me a message telling me that he is moving out of the house and what he has worked hard for does not matter to him anymore because he was never happy in this marriage. I remembered that last December I received water and electricity bill for the house on the area not far away from our house that was in this name which he denied and when I asked him again he said that is the house he has been renting and we’ll use it when he comes to our town as he was never happy with our relationship because I never supported him on his studies. He has been working and studying part time and got his junior degree in 2003 and honors in 2005 and in 1995 I was working with the career on hand. The accusations about how bad I am as a wife started to come out of his mouth, that I always shout at him, I show no respect towards him and his parents, I don’t love his parents, I do things as I wish, I don’t cook for him, the list is endless. The said part is he never complained about any of these things for 20 yrs. Anyway, I said sorry, I did not know, I’ll do my best to work on myself.

    The 1st time we met, we talked about many issues. I told him I can’t let him go as I know deep down, it’s not what he wants. I saw during this period that he was not staying with us, he was doing his best to be a good husband as before he left. When he left the town I didn’t care as we were not intimate anymore and I was exhausted from trying to show him that he has changed from better to worse. We started to make up, but the following day he changed his mind, saying that he does not believe that I forgave him for he knows what kind of a person I am (HEARTLESS). I am still trying to figure out where this is coming from as I do not remember threatening him or harming him in anyway that I can think of. And from the fact that I said I am not seeking forgiveness from him as he has not done any harm to me personally, he must ask GOD for forgiveness and repent. He has been carrying this sin for 5 yrs and is even prepared to sacrifice his family, separate from it and be alone to start all over with me at a distance. I refused as I have made vows before GOD, SEPARATION AND DIVORCE ARE NOT FOR ME TO CONSIDER, I DO NOT WANT THEM.

    His plan was to leave us with everything and see the children and sleep over if he wants to. According to him he did not want a divorce from our 1st talk. He came back saying he does not believe what I said that I want things to be ok. What if I decide to divorce him in 10 yrs time and leave him with nothing? I tried not to lead him but forced him to say exactly what he wants, which was this time: (1) not a divorce, (2) a separation, (3) a divorce. At that moment I kept quiet. We spent the Easter holiday together and one night he came back saying that he has decided that he wants to save our marriage. We went to church the following day and he accepted JESUS as his SAVIOUR.

    What I have noticed is that although he has repented, he does not want to confess his sins and move on. Every time that I try to fix things we will start arguing and we will run around in circles. My main concern is, I really wanted us to talk about the things that he is not happy about from my side. But whatever I say or have do is useless. I even wrote him a letter expressing my feelings and listing all that I can remember from his mouth about my wrong doings. The answer was there is nothing that I do is wrong and I must not worry about these things, they will make me sick.

    He got a transfer from last month and he is staying with us. The day he was moving out of the place he was renting, I asked him the plan about the furniture he was using. He said we will talk when he arrives. Up until last night I never got an answer. Two days ago I asked him again, he did not answer; yesterday morning I asked if he hears what I was asking, he said yes. After work he said he is going to the gym, on his way I phoned him and asked again, the answer was we will talk when he is back (as usual) in fact he said he does not want to talk about it because that is not important at this stage.

    Asking that question I already had a plan, it means the house he said he was renting is full of furniture and his clothes (he only arrived with 5 shirts, 4 trousers, few t-shirts and short pants), meaning that he is where he is not supposed to be right now, he does not belong with us. I started looking for the address of that house after talking to him on the phone. I sent him a message saying that I going somewhere, I don’t know when I will be back and I’m leaving the children alone. I went to the house. Here he is at the door saying bye to his child and the girlfriend. I greeted them and asked for his clothes this time because I could see the furniture was there. He asked what is it that I want from his clothes as I say it’s his. When I said my photos, he said they are at work. I said I’m not leaving until I get inside and look for them. He said to the girlfriend not to open and I can stay as I wish and he left. I called my brother, the three of us talked last night.

    He bought the house for his son. What he told me before is that the girlfriend lives somewhere, the affair is over, he only visits the child, he has no intentions of having an affair at this stage (when he moves out he will stay alone). He said he only wants to spend time with his children while rebuilding my trust again. This girlfriend has been neglected by her family because of having a child from a married man. He said this girlfriend is like me and focuses on one boyfriend and really loves him. When she saw that things are becoming sour between the two of them she wanted to fall pregnant so that she can have something to hold on to.

    What I asked him yesterday is: How did he buy a house without my signature? Are we still married?
    If the house is for the child, why are his clothes there? If there is no affair what is it that they do during his visits? What are they talking about, what are his promises? If the house is for the child, will he allow the girlfriend to have an affair and invite boyfriends in the house or marry and stay there? When did he last have sex with this girlfriend as that is history with us? Is there still an affair going on? Whose the 3rd person in the house (I heard a voice of an elderly woman)?

    I did not even get one answer. He told my brother that he must leave this up to us, he knows that he is wrong, and knows what to do to make things right. But he is not ready yet to take that step, I must not force him to anything, he will do things at his pace. After that he left and came back this morning to pick up the children. I guess that is the story of our lives as from now on (according to his likings).

    As much as I am against divorce, there is one thing that I can not tolerate, ABUSE, any kind!!! I told my elder son (11 yrs) this morning that things are not ok between me and his father but will do our best to correct them. From now on I decided to include him on whatever decision I make as I see there will be many.

    I do not know how I survive each day through this; I count every day as a blessing and BELIEVE IN GOD THAT HE IS WITH ME EVERYSTEP OF THE WAY AS I SEEK STRENGTH FROM HIM. I DID MY BEST; IT’S UP TO GOD NOW!!! The only thing I want to do now is get out of the house as soon as possible, I do not want anything to do with that man, our children are old enough, and he can communicate directly with them.

    I do not know my reason for writing to you about this long story of mine, but I hope it is a valid one. Thank you for your time. NPS

  5. (USA)  My husband decided to leave just after being discharged from the hospital. He says my emotions told him that I did not want him there. After working midnights and shoveling snow and taking my daughter to school then picking him up from the hospital, it never crossed his mind that I might be little tired and frustrated. The truth of the matter is I settled for the man I have today. I threw all my rules out the window. What a huge mistake. I’ve realized that I never truly loved him.

    I have discussed this with him, but it doesn’t seem to matter to him. He says he loves me, but I don’t feel anything when he says it. I’ve apologized to him for not being honest. I want a divorce and he doesn’t. I don’t want to hurt my FATHER and I don’t want to continue to live a lie. Continually in prayer and fasting today.

  6. (AUSTRALIA)  Many of the comments are from Christian women who take their marriage vows seriously and don’t really want to separate or divorce. I too never thought that I would go down that path, but after 23 years of marriage to an abusive man, God has clearly directed me to separate from him, not just for my sake but for the children’s sake too.

    I really wanted a therapeutic separation, under the counsel of church leadership, but it is not going to happen because my husband hasn’t taken ownership of his abuse and only uses pastors to do marriage counselling so he can change me because he insists it is a two-way thing. I never knew before that this itself is typical behaviour of abusive men (see Why Does He Do That by Lundy Bancroft).

    If a woman has really lost all feeling for her husband and cannot contemplate being together because of his abusive nature, then it is fraudulent to ask her to consider reconciliation because “the Bible does not allow for divorce apart from cases from adultery”. A deeper study of the Bible will clear up such misconceptions.

    I also find a lot of comments on these kinds of sites that put some responsibility of the abuse on the abused party, like the woman having deep issues of abuse from her childhood. This is not always true. The abuser is responsible for the abuse, full-stop. The abused person is not necessarily co-dependent or traumatised from her childhood. These kinds of statements add to the confusion (I saw this word used a lot in the comments) of the abused person, making her/him feel like she/he is partly to blame – this is exactly what the abuser has been trying to tell her all along.

    Separation in nonabusive marriages may well be therapeutic and lead to a stronger union. However, we have to be careful in talking to a separated abused woman about reconciliation always being the desire outcome.

    1. (USA)  Thank you, Grace, for your insight. I have recently separated from my spouse, who is an alcoholic and drug addict. Two years ago I did a structured intervention with our pastor, but I felt let down because he cried and acted like a victim, the men in the church felt sorry for him, and so no one held him accountable. His addictions only progressed, and after 2 more years of smokescreens and lies I took the kids and relocated to the city where I work.

      I chose NOT to agree that I would refrain from dating, or to any other “structure,” not because I want to act wild, but rather because after living with a master manipulator who has been playing at recovery for 2 decades, I knew that all he wants to do is put on enough of a show of recovery that I would be obligated to return, or to return to counseling where he could continue to “win” with mind games. I felt that, for my mental/emotional protection and ultimately to help him pursue recovery for recovery’s sake, I just had to keep it simple and say I’m separating myself from you (legal separation), and currently have no plans to reconcile with you. Maybe in the future I’ll pursue divorce, but right now, separation seems adequate.

      1. (AUSTRALIA)  Shan, I can really relate to that. It is precisely because of testimonies like yours where there was a fruitless reconciliation, that I don’t want to reconcile. He is also crying and very victim-like, winning sympathies from all around. Like your ex, mine is also not getting accountability because people feel sorry for him and believe everything he says. He is shocked that I am not accepting his story of change and have stood firm with my decision.

        My friends who are falling prey to his sob stories and promises to change are also wondering why I am not trying to save the marriage. Why indeed? Because I have learnt from the experiences of other women who have regretted being manipulated. People who are not in it don’t understand the destructive nature of mind games. And the longer you are in it, the more vulnerable you are. Eventually it will destroy your mind, your integrity, your self-worth, your children. No marriage is worth that.

  7. (ENGLAND)  My husband has lots of issues. He has health problems and takes lots of prescription pills. In the three years we have been together he has blips. He can’t cope with life and drinks on his tablets. He wrecks the house and has shown violence to me. The last incident was 18 December. The police involved me and my daughter and he said, I want you out of my home. I came back next morning to a wrecked home and a knife had been put through all of the three sofas. We have now separated till he can get the right help. I’m at my witts end. I love him but can’t live on my nerves, nor can my daughter.

  8. (CANADA) My husband and I have been married for almost 4 years but have been living separately for the last year. We’ve got a 3 year old but during the first 15 months of our marriage. I found out he’d cheated on me and was still in contact with the other woman and “wedding” talk was going on between them. It was a very difficult time for me and by difficult I man DIFFICULT. I couldn’t eat or sleep and yet I was breastfeeding (my child refused to take formula and whole milk) but anyway to this day I still thank God this happened when I was still on maternity leave.

    So he played all sorts of tricks on me trying to hide the affair but with my hard work I found out the truth. I was forced to investigate a lot of things about this man and days later I discovered he’d lied to me about his family too. At this point I took my child to a friend’s house and went to the police to alert them about the possibility of a bad fight in our household. When he came back home from work that day, I told him about my findings and he dismissed them. I immediately phoned the police to come take him and shredded his all travel documents (I felt like I married a con man who was only using me to get legal documents & stay in the country). He wasn’t arrested but went to live with friends. They called me a few days later to have peaceful talks with him and have him return home. We did talk but there was never a heartfelt apology from him.

    I took him back but then all of a sudden my gut feeling told me to investigate his previous marriage. While we were dating he voluntarily told me he was in a “marriage” of convenience with a friend to get off student visa status in the U.S. The lady was a friend of his at work and that she was to do this for him for $1500. He also told me she had a boyfriend with whom they had a child. This child was born during the course of “their marriage” and so the mother chose not to have a father’s name on the baby’s birth certificate. I believed him when he told me all this. So when the time came to file for his immigration documents in Canada I watched him fight so hard to “erase” this child from his records. He beat immigration to it and the child was removed from his file.

    I was forced to look up his ex-wife and luckily I did get her and she gave me the full details of their marriage and what led to the divorce. It was never a marriage of convenience on her side and when she got pregnant he cut off from her/them. This was the reason she chose not have a father’s name on her baby’s birth certificate and filed for divorce. He was informed about the baby’s birth but lied he was out of the country. He never visited them even once and tried to deny paternity of the baby. In the end, she got full custody of their son and my husband was to pay child support, which he never did. Once again I was very heart broken and was in disbelief that he could treat his own child like this.

    He came back home and we talked about it. In his defense he claims all she ever wanted was money. I never got an apology from him concerning this child. It was a very difficult time for us, I suggested we go for counseling but he refused to listen to me. I could tell he was guilty for his actions but I just couldn’t trust him anymore and was always questioning his motives for everything he had done in the past. These events totally changed the way I felt about this man. I totally failed to see in him the man he pretends to be around people.

    So, he went back to school and during his first semester, I found out he’d been seeing another girl at the university. I confronted him about it and he tried to make a fool out of me. I was a little at ease this time, because I spoke to the lady herself and she told me she shrugged him off but he became a problem and tried to force himself onto her (not physically). I made sure I spoke to her in his presence on speakerphone. I never got an apology from him, other than it wasn’t serious. We stayed together. In August last year, he told me he had intentions to travel to the U.S. and meet up with ex and see how he can make amends for his son. I was ok with it because I always felt the earlier he made things right, the better for him. I asked him to reconcile first before suggesting financial assistance. He ignored my advice and went on about the re-union like he was proposing a business deal to his ex-wife and her current husband.

    When he returned home from the U.S. we got into a bitter argument and he hit me in front of our 2 year old. I called the police and they took him away. Since then we’ve been separated. I found out from phone statements that he was constantly calling another woman he’d probably met on that same trip. At this point I felt like there was no point getting back together. So he got a restraining order and hired a lawyer and managed to get away with assaulting me. The case dragged on for a very long time so it cost him a good $10k, which of course is an expense he blames me for. The crown prosecutor told me he’d reported I shredded his passport in the past and that there would be no hearing.

    In the meantime, his ex-wife and her husband served him adoption papers and he immediately hired another lawyer in the U.S. to fight them back. He lied to his lawyer that he made many attempts to see the child and that they were all denied. He forged many email addresses in the past sending them to his ex-wife pretending to be his sister checking on her and the child. She always thought he had a sister not knowing it was him sending her emails. Also during his immigration filing he forged email addresses pretending to be his ex-wife and sent them to himself firing back insults just so he could have his child’s records erased.

    Since our separation I feel happier and healthier. I do talk to him for the sake of our child. He turned the child adoption into a big scandal and that too he’s putting the blame on me. From what I’ve heard, he’s likely to lose this case and his lawyer abandoned him for telling lies and so did his all witnesses. My husband is a very nice guy on the surface, very people friendly and calm but deep down under his skin, he’s not alone. And that’s what scares me the most about him. He has tried so hard to make me believe that I’m a very ugly hearted woman. Sometimes it hurts me. I know he has tarnished my name in the community but I’ve started to think more about myself and not pay any attention to the negative remarks he makes. I wanted to divorce him earlier but the legal fees were too high, I couldn’t afford it. I also wanted some more time to reflect and think think think.

    I took a friend’s advice about divorce leaving people bitter and broke, which is what I didn’t want for myself. We’ve both talked about settling for the uncontested divorce, which is free after one year of separation and proof that all outstanding issues will be resolved. We’re left with only a month to go but I’m now getting nervous and anxious. As of last week I was getting emotional over reality versus ideal. My biggest worry though is the child custody battle. He claims he wants 50-50 yet during our separation he hasn’t had our daughter for more than 15 hours a week. Prior to our separation he was not paying a single dime towards her day care fees, because he was a student and wasn’t making much. But, he had all these loans from the bank that he was using to invest for himself and in all his investment deals, I wasn’t involved. That got us fighting a couple of times but he never got the point till we separated. Also he never disclosed his address to me until I asked him for the nth time.

    Currently he moved from the previous address but still hasn’t told me his new place of residence. Such things worry me about him and my daughter’s safety. I also have plans of re-locating to the U.S. sometime next year but I’m scared he might turn my plans upside down because I want to move with our daughter. A few friends have also warned me about the possibility of that happening. Sometimes I call him to talk and once we get into an argument he just hangs up on me. He’s the most selfish human being I’ve ever known. I strongly believe he’s a sociopath. His background is really tacky. I empathize with him; he was abandoned by his birth mum and his father gave him up for adoption. I hate to make excuses for him but that is huge. As a mom I can’t even imagine doing that to my child.

    I have gone through so much. I remember the times I cried and cried and cried and failed to eat, but I still had to get up and go to work and act like I have no major problems going on. I was drowning but I refused to sink and when I look back I can only thank GOD. It was GOD that kept us all on our feet. I prayed to GOD to help me and my child and my husband individually, and also to help us as a family. This whole experience has taught me that adult life was indeed never meant to be easy. I’m not yet where I want to be but the worst part is certainly over. The reality has finally sunk in that I cannot stay married to this man. Please pray for me if you’ve read my story. Pray for me that God protects me this kind of evil, that God helps me move on with my child and that I become a better and not bitter person from this whole experience. But most especially please pray for my husband. I don’t know if there might be another victim but I pray there’s an end to his behavior. I trust in God’s power to change people (including me). Please pray for us. Thank you and GOD BLESS YOU.

  9. (USA) My “husband” and I are separated, but still living in the same house because we don’t have any other option. We have 2 children together, a girl almost 7 and a 5 month old son. He’s been married before. This latest affair was the 2nd one that I am aware of. He fell in love with this girl and was in the process of starting a new life with her and I found out. All of this while I just had a c-section baby. He is unemployed. One thing has led to another and we have had sex since we separated. He seems to think it will help us get closer. We are in counseling. What is your opinion of having sex to get closer?

    1. (SA) It is easy to fall into old habits with your “husband” especially when you reside under the same roof. However, the sex is never satisfactory because as soon as it’s over the reality of your situation hits you hard. Intimacy is not just about sex. The only way to get closer is to deal with what brought distance between you in the first place.

  10. (UNITED STATES) In the past my husband had betrayed me at least twice. Ever since we both have become violent, untrusting, emotionally and menataly abusive. The kids see some of it and are treating me with a lot of disrespect. My husband blames me for his betrayal, and for us always fighting. We seem to always blame each other almost everyday and we fight at least once a week.

    I want to separate from my husband he has also left me two times in our relationship and betrayed me each time. I feel this is best for the safety of our children and ourselves. I am praying for guidance and I haven’t gotten a clear answer yet, but I still feel this is best.

  11. (US) My husband walked out on me and my son, his stepson 1 1/2 ago. We have been together for 9 years. We have had money problems for over a year. We spent the whole weekend as usual and on Sunday after dinner he said he was leaving me and it was over. I didnt see it coming and was hurt beyond belief. I was a house wife and stay at home mom so he left me with no job and no money.

    I had to move back in with my parents. I started talking to him again and met him and spent the night with him. When it was time to leave he said he still wanted a divorce. A few days go by and we started talking again; we met for a few hours said he still feels connection and still loved me, so I was talking with him everyday and talking about working on our marriage. Then I met him and we got a hotel and stayed all night. He seemed so loving and caressing me, looking at me, but then morning came and I asked him if our marriage has a chance and he said I don’t think it’s possible because my family doesnt like you. I asked why because they did before. Well I guess he told them lies about me..So now I am crushed all over again…I keep telling myself if he loved me he wouldn’t do this. I Need advice.

  12. I am in the process of being separated. My wife had an affair and when confronted, wanted to reconcile. Now, after hanging out with her best friend – who immorally divorced her loving husband so she could hook up with her adulterous affair partner, who divorced his loving wife and 3 kids – she has gotten the notion that it won’t work out and she needs separation because “I’m driving her crazy” and because “she doesn’t like who she is right now.”

    Our NUMBER ONE stumbling block is that her friend along with Satan has influenced her to see only the bad in me and only the bad things I have done. Our counselor says she is suffering from denial and is re-writing history. I have been such a wonderful husband and father, so she has to make me out to be a bad person so she can justify her poor decisions.

    My questions are, how long do I put up with this? Will her normal brain ever return? Does Satan own her soul, lock, stock and barrel? Am I to be Hosea?

    To me, this all borders on being a psychopath. Only someone who has completely detached their feelings could do this to the spouse that they used to love more than life itself and to their children and family.

    It is so sad. I’m not sure how much longer I can stand for our marriage. My 9 yo and 12 yo are ready to disown her.

  13. I think this is excellent advice when the decision to marry the other person was grounded in reality and actual love. Too often, poor choices are made in the choice of a marriage partner and separation (ideally before any children are born) is the best thing you can do for your spiritual evolution, and to honor what is actually intended in the marriage sacrament. Any two fools can go through the pomp and circumstance of a wedding, and they can say vows that they can’t possibly keep, and just b/c there are words and rings involved doesn’t mean the union is godly. It may actually be an act of incredibly poor judgement that doesn’t come from a godly or healthy place. What I’m saying is -some separations should not have the goal of reconciliation. And, perhaps there should be more ministry around helping single people make better choices in partners and BE a better choice as a partner.

  14. How can I legally leave with our kids if he threatens separation, states he doesn’t love me and doesn’t want to stay married but refuses to leave the home. Refusing steps towards recovery and therapy, has become more volatile and irritable at home, or closes himself off from the family in another room. Refuses a therapeutic separation as he will “no way sleep elsewhere unless the kids sleep there half the time”. He’s unstable and cold. And pulling out $500 cash every 5-6 days with no word on where that money is going. Our home is not an emotionally safe place to be. I’m a stay at home mom in a new town, financially dependent. I feel stuck. I fear for my kids stability.

  15. Changing Partners Is Not the Answer. But these same people often find that running away doesn’t solve problems. Unless issues are aired and dealt with, you’ll probably experience the same type of unsatisfying relationship again and again. Changing partners is not the answer.

    Of course, it’s a different matter if there’s obvious physical danger or serious emotional danger for yourself or your children. Then, separation is for survival.

    LOL you should email this to my ex-wife LOL…Only 7 months after our divorce, is sleeping with someone else…of course she also told me you’re my soul mate I’ve been seeking. You’re my whole life…lies out of the pit of hell! I truly feel sorry for her being in 5 soon to be 6 failed relationships. At some point sex is not the answer and the real problem is there once you look into the mirror. I was a complete fool!