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October 24, 2020

Comments | Return to Story

Gilbert GripeJanuary 17, 2017

I know that we were all taught that only Temple Marriages are *real* marriages. Do you believe your marriage is no longer a *real marriage* now? Did you marry this man because you love him and want to be with him or because he was on your celestial kingdom checklist? You have to decide what makes a marriage a marriage. Can a marriage to a non Mormon still be a marriage?

From the other sideJanuary 16, 2017

I can totally relate to this article. However, I would be the husband that left the church. I even started drinking coffee and alcohol. I would even say I flirted shortly after I left the church. But, my marriage survived. Here's why; my wife and I recommitted to each other. Even though I technically 'changed' and was not the man she originally envisioned when we were married in the temple, she and I both realized our core marriage was more important than our 'core beliefs'. She was willing to not let the church influence our marriage and I was willing to refocus my energy to her and the kids. I still drink coffee and alcohol as a responsible adult, but just because my wife doesn't, she doesn't make it an issue. I also try not to be critical of the church unless it is an issue we need to navigate as a family. (Like who will baptize our kids, etc.) All in all, my leaving the church has made our family stronger because we recommitted to each other and remembered what makes our family great. I wish you the same in your family.

Ray CongerJanuary 15, 2017

What this husband doesn't understand is that he is taking a wrecking ball to his own family. The commitment he made to his wife in their marriage vows was a promise to his yet unborn children that he SHALL live honorably toward them. Period! This means he shut all the open doors available to him from the "single life" when he made promises to their mother. He did it. No one else made him. Therefore, he should just suck it up and fake it until *they* make it. Meaning, his children should be standing on their own feet as adults before he removes himself from the relationship. That is the way to "man up." What a bumb!

EmellieJanuary 15, 2017

Glen it said "stories emerged" nothing concrete regarding fidelity. Would you divorce because your spouse flirted? We don't know all the details. Everything here minus the fidelity question applies to my marriage right now. The answer helped me a lot, and I feel dwelt that I should remain in my marriage, even if my husband is struggling spiritually right now.

Liz BellJanuary 14, 2017

Beautifully said Geoff. Thank you for your insights. The reminder to be soft so I can be more open to the spirit rather than letting myself get consumed with anger and resentment was much appreciated. Thank you.

hopeandhealingldsJanuary 14, 2017

I am seeing many women struggling with a spouse that has lost (or is struggling) with his faith. (There is an oft-commented on post at Mormon Women: Who We are if you are interested.) I agree with Geoff that infidelity of any kind is unacceptable. Be sure to separate out the two in your mind. Faith struggles are not uncommon in a lifetime (although his are often severe). But you need not accept infidelity. I would encourage you to read more of Geoff's materials and other materials on betrayal trauma. Even if your husband doesn't do pornography or other behaviors, the struggles and pain are similar with any kind of infidelity. Sometimes it's hard to find a soft heart when yours needs healing. Healing is possible, regardless of what your husband chooses to do or not do. My screen name is the URL of a website that has a forum for women dealing with betrayal trauma. I highly encourage you to reach out for support from women who have found healing in the face of betrayal. As you find healing, you will have more ability to get clarity about what to do. Also, I encourage finding a good therapist who understands boundaries.

RebeccaJanuary 13, 2017

My soon to be ex-husband had trouble with flirting with other women from the start of our marriage and had a full affair in 2002. Everyone encouraged me to forgive and stay and I did but he started on the same path again within a few years. I found affectionate texts and overheard gushing phone calls and talked to him but he wasn't repentant at all so I wished him well. Best decision ever. I finally have peace.

Bob PowelsonJanuary 13, 2017

Dump the useless Putz, nail him with enough alimony and child support to keep you and your children. Get o decent divorce lawyer and when he gone, find another decent man.

Alisa HenrieJanuary 13, 2017

Mr. Danielsen, it is important to be careful with language. She states that 'stories have come up about flirtations'. I agree that this is concerning. But it is up to this couple to decide what is worth working through and what is not. Stories may just be stories. One persons 'flirtation' is a conversation. It may be much more, but you and I do not know the details. The advice here is also left open for anyone else in a similar, yet different, situation to take counsel from. I have a family member in a similar situation, who is unsatisfied with some church doctrine and history, but has held strong to family values and moral decency. I am grateful every day that their family has been able to weather their own storm thus far, and I pray they will continue to do so. Sometimes divorce is the answer, but not always. And its not our choice to make, its theirs.

KathyJanuary 13, 2017

I disagree with the counsel you gave to stick with this marriage. The foundation upon which stable marriages are built -- a commitment to God, covenants, and one's spouse -- are no longer present. This man has demonstrated that he is no longer committed to these principles. Unless she is willing to live with such a man and the life that would come with it, which I feel she isn't, she should feel free to end the marriage and move on to find happiness with someone who values what she values and is willing to commit to them.

Cameron DyckJanuary 13, 2017

It is always saddening to hear when a marriage goes through serious troubles. And this is no exception. There is some good advice here, but there is also some very dangerous assumptions. One thing that was mentioned was that there are "Stories emerged of flirtations with other women, etc." And stories are just that - stories. Until they are actually verified, they are only rumors. The response made, "If your husband won’t make a commitment to marital fidelity, then you’ll have to make some difficult decisions about what you can tolerate in this marriage.", is a bit extreme since fidelity has not been verified, only questioned. Indeed his fidelity to wife wife needs to be discussed, and until after that would extreme measures need to be considered.

LauraJanuary 13, 2017

Hi , I have felt very strongly to respond to this post. I have gone through a very similar experience. Mine began 13 years ago with a request for divorce. Divorce was not something I was willing to do with 19 years of marriage and 5 kids. Yet, it seemed it was going to happen. So, I made the choice to go back to school because my spouse was able to work from home and be with the kids. I got a job to pay for school and started my studies. He stuck around while I was going to school. When my spouse's job changed and he was no longer able to stay home with the kids I stopped going to school and quit my job. A year later, my husband took a job out of state. During this time he became inactive and removed his garments. There were questions of flirtations and reaching out for other companionships. He commuted back and forth for 2 years until he moved us out. It was very difficult to manage all the differences that had taken place and the different perspectives of the gospel. There wasn't the resources nor anybody offering any kind of free service as this therapist has. I am grateful you have that available for you. I managed to hang in there, even though it was by a thread many times. I managed because of one reason. In a temple marriage there is a triangle with Jesus Christ at the head and then the two spouses. As long as Christ and one of the spouses are working together their is hope and strength to make it through. He will be your lifeline! I attended the temple often, fasted weekly for many years and cried in prayer many times for the strength and the charity I would need. A very humbling and difficult miracle took place that helped my husband get back on the gospel path. While things are not perfect and the road was extremely difficult, I would not trade the learning experiences I acquired during these last 13 years. My husband is now very active and has a strong testimony. Our 2 youngest children that went through this with us are very strong in the gospel. Two of our oldest have left the church and the other of our older children has become inactive and removed his garments. I have been blessed with patience and understanding as my husband and my three oldest explore their own journey's. Was it easy to not give into divorce? No, it was a battle! Have I gained some wonderful blessings? Yes! My family is still together, I am much stronger and closer to my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, among all the gold nuggets I learned along the way on this journey. The therapist here gave some good advice! My prayers go out to you that you will find the strength to do what the Lord will have you do and that you will learn what He needs you to learn!

Glen DanielsenJanuary 13, 2017

"Not only is his commitment to fidelity something you need to clarify ..." What? Her husband has already 'clarified' his commitment to fidelity — he has none. I think divorce sometimes has a purpose. I think the thing she needs to clarify with him is the name of her divorce attorney. I'm not a fan of some of the wordy 'answers' that are applied to these Hardest Family Questions. To me, they sometimes don't fully address reality.



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