Deciding To Leave A Problem Marriage


Deciding To Leave A Problem Marriage

She's wondering whether it's wrong to leave this problem marriage.

She married him because she was in love, pregnant, Christians were telling her it was the moral thing to do and she was bribed. During the past seven years she has tried to get him to go to counseling, repeatedly asked for a divorce, been lured back to the marriage after she's left, and now he's promising to change — one more time. She says her kids are being put in harm’s way.

I don't have details, but from the rambling description she wrote, I strongly suspect that the mistreatment she alludes to should be called abuse. Read her words and decide whether you agree with my answer.

It's never wrong to leave an abusive relationship. I'm reading between the lines here, but after 40 years as a marriage counselor I see too many signs of a cycle of abuse to ignore them. It sounds as if you had been in an emotionally abusive relationship that has degenerated into a physically abusive one.

The signs I am reading are that you have tried repeatedly to leave this marriage and being lured back by promises of good behavior that have never really materialized.

You said, “He knows he screwed up but he still wants to try and work on it. He said that 2 years ago and he said that last month. He has never shown signs of truly changing…”

I can't tell you how many abused women I've heard say the same thing. Every time an incident happens and you threaten to leave, he promises to reform. The reform lasts a very short time and then the negative behavior resumes and gets worse. You seem to be describing exactly this cycle.

It often takes women many tries to get out of a relationship like this. Some never do and wind up that badly hurt or even dead. Leaving can be dangerous, so take precautions for your physical safety. Check out the National Domestic Violence Hot Line for help.

It isn't wrong to walk out an abusive seven year marriage. Get out now. You owe it to yourself and your children.


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