During Separation: Time Can Be Your Friend

The following article is written to women who are dealing with their husbands who have left them, but the same principles can also apply to men who are dealing with their wives who have left. During separation, time can be your friend, whether you are a woman or a man. We encourage you to pray, glean, and see what God could be saying to your heart.

They that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings as eagles.
(Isaiah 40:31)

lonely depression separation - Pixabay

Because your emotions are so turbulent, you may think no happy answer to your situation is possible. Your thoughts may run the gamut from a fairy-tale ending to the worst possible outcome. When you find yourself in this state for very long,you may be tempted to do whatever will give a clean resolution. You may want closure, even if that means doing what you really don’t want to do. But making rash decisions may be something you will woefully regret later. Time may be your friend, if you let it.

Difficult Advice to Hear

When this disaster first swooped down upon me, my friend Toni Jo said something that shocked me at first. I didn’t want to hear it.

“Don’t be in a hurry,” she said. “Give him as much time as he needs. He’s confused and needs to figure himself out. Tell him to take a year if he needs to figure out what he wants.”

“A year!” I exclaimed. “A year?”

“What’s a year in a whole lifetime?” she asked. “If it takes a year for him to figure things out, and then you have thirty more happy years together after that, wouldn’t it be worth it?”

As it turned out, it took three years for my husband and me, not one. But yes, it was worth it.

Don’t Make Rash Decisions

Trusting God includes waiting on him to do whatever he is trying to do during this process. Because God does not force his loving work into our lives, making rash decisions can preclude God from accomplishing new dimensions of spiritual and emotional growth in you and your mate as well as others around you. We need to give God time.

Waiting is extremely hard when each day weighs us down with an eternity of suffering. But time has a way not only of healing but also of giving perspective. What may seem true to your mate today may look different to him tomorrow. Each new encounter between the two of you can set him or you off in a different relational direction, either positive or negative.

Many years of clutter may need to go through the filter before the gemstones of your life together can become clear. If your husband has separated from you, he may be trying not to even think about you now. He may be focusing only on what he can make sense of. And that probably is not you and your relationship. Most likely he is filling his mind with work and other interests that keep him aloof emotionally.

During Separation Time Can Be Your Friend

During moments of deep depression, when you really want to give up, pick up your Bible and let God speak to you. Listen to what he says to you at that particular time. He wants to strengthen you, and you need strong wings if you’re going to mount up on the wings like eagles. Wait on the Lord. Remember, he is able to do more than we could ever imagine. But sometimes it requires time.

Lift your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one, and calls them each by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing. Why do you say, O Jacob, and complain, O Israel, ‘My way is hidden from the LORD, my cause is disregarded by my God?’

“Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.

“Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint (Isaiah 40:26-31).

This article is written by Linda W. Rooks and comes from the book, Broken Heart on Hold: Surviving Separation, published by Life Journey. As Linda writes about this book, “Broken Heart on Hold is meant to be a friend to walk beside you through the labyrinths of your confusion and pain. It is not a quick fix or a prescription for how to solve your problems. It is intended to be a daily companion in your crisis.”

You can also visit Linda’s Web site at Brokenheartonhold.com where she has “individually formatted a number of Bible verses for your strength and encouragement.”

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Filed under: Separation and Divorce

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Comments

400 responses to “During Separation: Time Can Be Your Friend

  1. I am a man who has made lots of mistakes with my wife and kids. Tomorrow is our 23rd wedding anniversary but we are separated. Though I have made lots of mistakes I would still like to be reconciled. I have acknowledged and repented of my sins and seek reconciliation. I fear it may be too late. I ask for prayer and advice.

    1. I was a terrible man to my wife of one year. I was a “Christian” but not really. It took for her to leave me, to see how helpless I was in my own sin. It forced upon me a confrontation with myself and my necessity for God. It’s been a year and 3 months since we separated. But we aren’t divorced yet. There has been little to no communication. But I still pray. And I won’t move on and I won’t stop praying every day of every second I can for her. Until the Lord reveals to me that it’s time to move on. I am encouraged by this writer who waited 3 years. And God worked a miracle. I pray God works in a miracle for you too brother. “Pray without ceasing”! God bless

    2. Three years I have waited for my husband in this Midlife Hell! With little or no communication while he carries on in an affair! Ten years married, five together. No remorse or regret. This started in 2012, maybe before, who knows? He started being irritable snapping at the kids and myself no reason! Started when we were going to be grandparents for the first time, his Father passed away, youngest graduated High School and his mother died, didn’t want to celebrate birthdays anymore. Changed his clothes and sneakers; it’s been a nightmare. I encourage him to come home, he says not now, whatever or not happening? 54 years old. I gave the man anything he wanted. Worked two jobs and he had the nerve to start an internet affair with a strange woman; left us all and is running! I can say I’ve been to hell and back with this ride. I love my husband; I just would like him safely home. It’s been three years standing for him. He never came to me with intentions and I’m in the limbo waiting game.

      1. I am sorry. I am in the same boat. My husband left me and now lives in Mexico. He told me he fell in love with another woman and wants me to move on from this fantasy that we will get back together. It was a toxic relationship with verbal abuse and physical incidents as well. I prayed for God to touch his heart and heal the anger, narcissistic ways, absurd pride and selfishness from his heart. He says he loves me but not in a deep way anymore. He wants me to find happiness with another man and wants me to leave him alone. He said he tried but cannot force what he no longer feels. Mind you I still pay his cell phone. I think sometimes, “Am I crazy to be hopeful when he has been consistently telling me for over a year that he no longer wants to be with me?” He still wants to make friends with women over social media and has had inappropriate boundaries with many and never took my concerns to heart when I asked to cut off some whom I felt disrespected our marriage. He said I was being insecure and “sickly” jealous. Absolutely not true. :( I am at a loss for words and feel like I am here but am not. It hurts but I feel that the love I had for him and for myself slowly chipped away with every insult or wound he inflicted on me. I’ll pray for you.

        1. Just came across this article and am sitting here feeling exactly what you both expesssed… don’t know what to do anymore.. praying for all of us.

          1. I’m sorry Dawn you are going through this nightmare! My husband has been gone 3 years 2 months tomorrow; he is living with the other woman he met on the computer. Married to me living a double life! He doesn’t call me and it’s little communication while he finds himself, and acting like a teenager is called Mid life Hell. It lasts from 2-7 years; if you’re lucky they might be home in 2. I’m over three years standing for my Marriage! The OW and Satan will not win!

            He has not made any intentions to me except dangle me and hold on me. If I start dating he is besides himself. I gave my husband anything he wanted. After the death of his Dad he left everybody and everything behind and moved in with her. Total stranger off the Internet. your husband will be in Replay of Midlife Crisis for some time. It’s not 100% if they will ever come back but 98% of them ask to come back when they realize the grass is not greener on the other side!

            If the spouse is willing to wait for them to finish there journey. The Hero Spouse Forum is very good for understanding Midlife crisis on the Internet. I don’t know what stage my husband is in it’s really Heartbreaking I just spent my fourth Thanksgiving without him. No reason on his leaving talking nonsense to justify his affair and actions. The OW has used threats against his family if he leaves.

            The Lord will prevail and give my husband the strength to pack his things and come home to his wife! What the Lord put together let no woman or man put asunder. Amen move on with your life and stay busy; continue to be happy and do for you! My husband told me find a friend find a boyfriend be happy I’m never coming back. I have good days and bad days with this situation. When he asked me to leave in 2013 of July it was against my will! He kept saying I’m doing this to protect you as my wife! I will join you shortly. The communication we did have he tore me up in monster phase mean miserable, not happy, angry, sad, missing me, to this day if he remembered how he talked and treated me he would just cry. My husband is a strong man big man always protective of his wife, this is totally out of character for him.

        2. I’m sorry your going through this Marita I shall pray for you also. I’m in a three year two month stand for my Husband tomorrow. It’s called Midlife Crisis or Male Menapause; it’s hell that, from my experience, lasts from 2-7 years. If you’re lucky he will come out of it around three years gone. Stay busy, do for you. I do not know what stage my husband is in. We have no communication and if I need to leave him a message on his cell phone to call me back, I am standing for my marriage. Satan and the OW will not win!

          My husband walked away from everybody and everything for her four hours away in NY City, moved in with her – a total stranger on the computer. Told me I love you very much but don’t love you❤️ And I’m a friend. That’s called bomb drop that was April 10, 2014 around the time his affair was discovered. I almost had him home last year, he told me the grass is not greener on the other side. I said you’re welcome to come home; he said not now.

          Remain calm and move forward with your life, stay busy. 98% of spouses come home after they wake up and realize what they have done. Some do not and start a new life with somebody else, it’s a waiting game for me, I live my life do what I want; if somebody asks me on a date I go. You have done nothing wrong so do not blame yourself, it’s all about them low Testrone is usually a chemical imbalance. Death of a family member will trigger it, becoming grandparents, it’s a terrible illness it’s like the seven year itch married they want to sow their oats without responsibility. My husband walked away from everybody and everything for a stranger.

          Many times I almost said I’m done but the Lord says wait, time is your friend, separation is very hard on me unwanted, never saw this coming. My husband and I did everything together, I gave him anything he wanted. I continue to stand in the blood of Christ that this Separation will end and he will come home to his family in this Thy will be done with the Lord. The OW is threatening him with threats promising him money if he stays. The Lord will Prevail let no woman or man ever put us under what the Lord put together! For better or worse! He is miserable when he does call to check in, not happy at all, when God convicts him he will see what he has done to his family and come home. Nobody has done anything to my husband to make him run. He was a loving protective man who loved his family and his wife. I hope your husband comes home soon stay strong and keep praying put the Lord first and your husband second and your children third stay positive stay busy and you shall see results .

      2. I am so sorry Robyn. My story sounds very similar…been standing on God’s Word and in the gap for my marriage, my family, my husband and me for 33 months. We were together 32 years, married 20 of those years. This has been extremely devastating for me, the kids and even for my husband. We are not divorced…he’s now 56 and me 54…with 3 grown kids, 3 grandkids. he’s living with the ow, now has a drug addiction. He’s been running from God in full rebellion. This “mid-life crisis” has made our lives a “living hell” for sure. I will pray for you as I continue to stand with God and pray His Word…God wants to change us first (our hearts)…Praise God!

        1. Thank you for your prayers Connie this is unheard of what my husband is doing. He is 54 years old in a Midlife crisis still married never came to me with intententions or Remorse. Ten years married – together five, he is living with the OW four hours away from me in the City. My husband hates the City of NY let alone live there? He is doing everything opposite of what he believes in. He took up with a woman on the computer in 2013 after his father died, in between Jan 2014 grandparents first time he wanted nothing to do with our grandchild or celebrate his birthday anymore. He started a bucket list, discarded me like I was Garbage. Little or no communication with him.

          I’m in a 3 year two month stand for him with no contact. He has told people I am his wife, and lives a double life 4 hours away. I heard through the grapevine this affair has ended and she is trying to keep him there with her threats against me and his family. In 2004 his mother died and he ran to her the day his mom was buried, left us all everything and everybody moved in with OW. Nobody has heard from him since except me to check on me phone call and his youngest son. I pray to God on a daily basis that he realizes and wakes up from this nightmare, I can honestly say I have been to Hell and back with this Midlife Crisis and can’t wait till he wakes up. I shall pray for you also. 😇🙏 that your husband returns home also.

      3. Robyn, I’m so sorry you are going through this! I pray that the Holy Spirit of God convicts your husband and brings him to full repentance in the name of Jesus! I pray that God restores your marriage to a place that is even better than you could imagine for it to! In Jesus mighty name!

    3. Have you actually changed your ways? Saul often said to David that he was sorry, and would not harm him, but his actions did not match his words. David never ceased to respect and honor Saul as king, but he never returned, either.
      I left my husband because of abuse, substance, verbal, and emotional. I went back because he said he had changed, but I did not wait long enough to see the fruit. After nine weeks he went back to his abusive ways. We are separated again. We talk almost every day, we are friends, but I will never share a home with him again unless I have seen the fruit of repentance over time.

  2. My husband and I have just recently celebrated our one year anniversary and he is wanting out and wants a divorce. He wants to live a different lifestyle. One where he doesn’t want to be committed to a partner, he wants to engage in multiple partners. He identified himself once as a believer but the enemy has deceived him with lust and sex, where he no longer follows Christ and His teachings. Please pray for him, that God will reveal Himself to him and that he will respond positively. I will stay committed to loving him wholeheartedly and I want to save our marriage. Is there hope for us?

    1. Em, l pray that your husband’s heart is turned back to you and that he is obedient to the word of God. In Jesus name.

  3. My husband and I have been together for 8 1/2yrs. but married for 6 of those years. 3 months ago I decided to let him know because I wasn’t feeling loved or acknowledged I entertained another man’s attention. We didn’t do anything sexual, just conversation. He was beyond hurt and started sleeping at his job and keeping distant from me. He would come home each day after work and not talk to me or even tell me he loved me (something he would say everyday for the whole relationship). We finally talked and he said he wanted to separate because it was too much for him to handle under the same roof. Though he said he couldn’t afford a room, he got one anyway. I thought it was a little extreme to handle things this way especially since he reached out to other women to feel validated when he didn’t think I loved him just for the attention.

    He begged me not to leave him when the roles were reversed, but now he leaves me and our children (4 months, 4 yrs, and 6 yrs.). He’s been gone for 3 months now, with no sign he wants to come back (or at least in my eyes). He calls just about everyday to talk to the kids. We’ve had a few conversations, but when I try to address the marriage he gets upset or doesn’t want to talk about it. He’s even told me to continue with the divorce, but he got mad when I told him I’m going to move on with my life because I can’t sit in a grey area. I just don’t get it. Does he want the marriage or not?

    He will listen to my views and my words, but won’t say anything. I decided based on how things were going and how he abandoned his family, I filed for divorce. I’ve reminded my husband I love him and think we can work this out, but he says he doesn’t feel he can trust me now. I think it’s deeper than what he’s saying. During these 3 months my husband was demoted from a manager’s position to a customer service rep (the same position he started with the company 4 yrs ago) which I’m sure messed up his manhood. He can’t afford to pay the rent for his room, and he can’t afford to pay his monthly bills. And now that he’s on child support for our children, he really won’t be able to pay for anything (which I feel all this stuff he’s going through isn’t my fault since he’s the one that moved out). I would think most smart men would swallow their pride and come back home with their family instead of struggle just to prove a point. He’s called me for sex a few times, as well as flirted, and held long conversations with me…but the next day acts like I’m his enemy. He’s 28 and I’m 33. I’m trying to hold on, but not sure if it’s even worth it or a lost cause. I must say he’s always had self esteem, and pride issues and I’ve always been the “strong,confident link” of the relationship. But right now I don’t know which direction to go. I know they say men can’t handle their woman getting attention from another man, but I think his whole handle on this situation is beyond over board.

    1. Dear Kay, I pray that you are able to trust God in what comes next and your wise decision and that it will be the best for you and your little children. You need all the energy for them so I think dwelling on why this happened must be draining. And, having a conversation and seeking company when feeling down is okay! Mostly I pray your 3 children don’t hurt that much when daddy is away and that you don’t rush into the divorce. You spent years building the relationship. Love from Lucie

  4. Me and my husband have been married for ten years, separated for the last 4 months. He had an affair and is having a child with her. This is his only child. We were talking everyday and getting along great. One day I said some pretty harsh things. Now he says he doesn’t want to see or hear from me again. I want more than anything to restore my marriage, but we have no contact. I love him with all my heart. I am working on making myself a better person. I want him to be a big part of the child’s life. I even told him I would help him raise the child and love it like it was one of mine. Any suggestions on getting him to contact me? I really want our marriage to be saved.

  5. Should I continue talking to my prodigal on the phone? We had gone for 4 months with zero communication then last week he turned up at the house whilst I was at church. He left again before I got back home. He said he was in a hurry and couldn’t wait any longer. I just took this as a sign from God because the previous night I had prayed for a sign as I was growing weary. He took my phone number and we have been kind of communicating but he doesn’t call me when he says he will and he doesn’t pick up or return my calls.

    Last night he called me and I spoke to him about this and he promised he will not do it again. So today he called me in the morning on my way to church and we had a nice, pleasant conversation. He even told me he loved me, but this evening I noticed that he blocked me from Whatsapp and he is not picking my calls. Obviously this is painful and confusing to me because I was now believing we are on the road to restoration. I cried and my faith wavered a little. I still want to stand for my marriage, but my question is if he calls me back in the next few days should I continue to talk to him?

    1. Hi Lori, I’m not sure if you’re talking about a prodigal child or spouse. But I’m kind of thinking you’re talking about a prodigal spouse. I’m so sad for you –whatever situation it could be. Both are very, very painful. I don’t know if you realized that we have a topic devoted to the Unbelieving Spouse. You can see what we have posted at: https://marriagemissions.com/category/unbelieving-spouse/. Please glean through the info given. You may find things written within it that will help you to stand in the gap even stronger. Your husband sure needs your prayers. May God bless you as you stand!

  6. My situation is different. I left my husband not once, not twice, but 4 times. My husband has a potty mouth and when angry he tells me hurtful things but I can only put up with so much, so I pack up my stuff and leave. And regretting it. I asked to come back home and he says no because I hurt him that he doesn’t want to get hurt again. We talk every single day. He told me he loves me and misses me; we’ve been separated for 6 months already. I cry every single day. I’m jumping from house to house. I feel so lost without him. We were dating for 10 years and finally got married – we have been married for two years and already we haven’t celebrated one ANNIVERSARY together because I leave. Sometimes I think it’s me but then he’s got a LOT to do with me leaving. I just pray that God will reconcile our marriage.
    .

    1. I’m so sorry for what you are going through. I know very well about it. I pray that God will bring full repentance to your husband’s heart and allow the love of God to open his heart to you! I pray that you both surrender to the leading of the spirit of the Lord and have full restoration of your marriage!!

  7. I’m so grateful for this website because it ministers to my heart in so many ways. My husband and I have been divorced for over 5 years. God has recently changed my heart so much toward my ex husband and I desire restoration of our marriage. I don’t want things the way they were but I pray for a much better relationship. I ask for prayer that my ex husband has a repentant heart toward God and a forgiving heart for me. I pray that I find favor in his heart and that he has the same desire for me that I’ve been given for him. He doesn’t want it at this point but I pray that a miracle will happen and his heart changes completely for me. Thank you in advance for your prayers.

  8. I am a wife and my husband made the decision of separation. I am the one who wants to reconciliation, he doesn’t want to do it. He said, he wants to be away, be single and do a lot of things that he couldn’t do being married. He is 50 years old, I am 41; we just celebrated our 20th anniversary, but I accepted that we have had a difficult year of fighting, not talking about it, we avoid seeing us, sleeping in different rooms, and being back again and one day after a big fight I gave him 2 months to go somewhere to think about it and make up his mind and put together his ideas, and he left. We had a terrible Thanksgiving, miserable Christmas and a horrible New Years. My kids are 16, 12 and 9, they miss their dad, and they see him 4 times a week while I am at work.

  9. My husband and I haven’t lived together for several years because of financial reasons at first, but six months ago I put my foot down and made him tell me why he would always shoot down the idea of us getting our own place again. We both now have decent jobs and decent income. After threatening to end our marriage, he finally said he wasn’t in love with me and isn’t sure that he ever has been. I completely understand how hard it can be to be patient and wait on God. It’s much more difficult since he shared his feelings with me. He doesn’t want to end our relationship but doesn’t seem to be trying. He is the kindest man I know and my best friend but he recently made the comment that divorce isn’t such a bad thing. He used to be a firm believer that divorce was a huge sin and he would never get one. Communicating about our situation makes him uncomfortable so we don’t talk about it. I should give God a chance and be patient but I find it hard sometimes because I’m so angry.

    1. Hi Jennifer, my situation is much like yours. My husband’s let me know that he’s not in love with me anymore. He says he doesn’t think of me as his wife. It’s been five years that he’s been distant from me. For the past year or so we live in separate rooms. We treat one another cordial as if we are roommates. We are friends, and we work on the house putting floors down together. We love our adult children and are having so much fun with our first grandchild born January 2017. I feel like a married woman living a single life. I’m so lonely. His personality has also changed at the last five years. He seems to be intolerant of certain people. He goes on his faceBook and argues with anybody who responds politically.

      When I was in his room he would rant and rave about situations and things people said on Facebook or the Internet. It’s almost like he’s prejudice and resents poor people. I don’t even know who this man is anymore. I won’t read his Facebook. He used to be so caring and nice. Over the past five years I’ve had to build up walls to be able to deal with his attitude of not needing a woman for anything anymore. Although I feel I will always have unconditional love for him I feel like I’m not in love with him anymore either.

      I now feel that I’m not a mother to me anymore as well. But if you ever need me for anything I will be there for him. Now there’s nothing between us romantically at all. I treasure our first 20 years of marriage. We had such an amazing love. I wish we could have that back. He plans to move out March 1st. Our plan is to get closer to the Lord. Hopefully he will come back a new man who loves and cherishes me. And I will come back a new woman not filled with hurt and shame of my husband not being in love with me. I’m praying for healing and my heart. That I want to be able to bring down all the walls I’ve had a put up to survive. I spent my last 31 years with him. He seems to of lost all affectionate caring and emotion for me for 10 years now with the last five years been more intense and so lonely. I went through the loss and the mourning of our marriage while we’ve lived in separate rooms. He doesn’t want to talk about our relationship. He always finds some reason to leave the room. It’s so hard, so hurtful. I’ve been in this limbo state of our marriage. I wonder if we’re doing the right thing? I guess were moving toward a separation. It is really hard for me to live with a man who repeatedly shows he doesn’t love me anymore. I guess I’m really hurt. He doesn’t treat me mean on a normal basis. Every once in a while he tries to attack me emotionally.

      I’m hoping that he realizes that he does love and care for me. We’ve been to therapy, and read the love language book. The funny thing is, as I am so miserable, lonely and hurt, in this relationship. He says he could live with me forever. For myself it tears me up how he shows on a daily basis that he doesn’t think of me as a wife. There’s no husband and wife affection. No love. I’m to the point where I’m OK with it going either way, but prefer for us to live our golden years together with love and appreciation of one another. I’m just gonna put my trust in God to lead the rest of my life.