Some final thoughts on the woman seeking a divorce

This is the final part in a series for men facing divorce. See parts one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight and nine.

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Are they all cheating?

When I started this series, I expected some push back and some ideas I had not considered. Got both. What I was not ready for was the number of people who would try to convince me having an affair or planning to have one is the most common reason a woman seeks a divorce, that women commit adultery as much (one fellow said more) than men, or if she’s not having an affair now it’s inevitable she will if she keeps pushing for a divorce. There seem to be more than a few men out there who think the plethora of well-done studies on adultery are wrong (or intentionality dishonest) and apparently women are so desperately horny for sex with anyone other than their husband that it’s amazing they are not doing it in public.

Okay, the last bit is me, but it’s the logical conclusion if you believe what some have told me. If it were one or two men who said something like this, I’d write it off, but I’ve had more than a dozen. Yes, I know some women cheat, but that does not explain what I am hearing. I find myself wondering why some men make it about, or want it to be about, sex. Why would “she must be having or is about to have an affair” somehow make it easier for a man? Is as simple as the only reason he can think of? Is he projecting male sexuality onto women? Does adultery let him off the hook with his friends and church?

The reason aside, that some men are so focused on a sexual explanation for a wife divorcing concerns me. I’ve had a couple of guys flat out tell me it’s the ONLY reason their wife (and one even said any woman) would want a divorce. I am baffled! Is it so hard to imagine a woman might be miserable in her marriage for reasons other than sex? If a man can’t imagine any other reason a woman would want out of her marriage, I suspect his wife may well be unhappy in her marriage!

Here’s the thing, women are far more about relationships, feelings, and emotions than they are about sex. What’s more, they usually are not much about sex at all unless those other things are working well. When a woman does cheat, it is rarely for the sex, but rather because she is getting other needs met and the sex just happens as a natural part of it. Yes, there are exceptions, but those are just that – exceptions! If a wife is getting what she needs outside the bedroom from her husband, the odds of her having sex with another man are slim. If her husband is not providing what she needs outside the bedroom, she is going to be unhappy in her marriage, which can lead to divorce with or without an affair.

Please do not think I am saying a woman is right to divorce just because she is unhappy – she is not. But it happens, and it is happening with increasing frequency – even in the church. There was a time when a man was pretty safe from divorce if he did not beat his wife, get drunk all the time, or openly cheat; those days are gone. It’s no longer enough to simply not be too bad; fail to be a halfway decent husband and you may find you are no longer a husband. Yes, it’s horrible a woman would divorce for any little thing; it’s also horrible a man would fail to work on his marriage and give his wife some “little thing” she sees as cause for divorce.

One other reality check – in most of the “modern world” a woman does not need a man in the way women needed men in the past. Our modern world is less physically demanding, and less threatening and scary in many ways. There are plenty of jobs for women, and plenty of places offering help for women. A woman with three kids and nothing but a GED won’t have it easy, but such a woman can make a go of it for herself and her children.

The bottom line is we must live in the world we have. We live in a world where not having biblical grounds for divorce means nothing to a growing number of folks, including more and in the church. Those who don’t deal with the reality of our world are at a disadvantage. While I think we should preach how it should be, we also need to see how it is and make intelligent choices and decisions based on reality.

By the way, none of what I’ve said should be read as me thinking a wife should have to put up with being treated wrong. I am arguing against those whose only defence to their wife wanting a divorce is “she does not have a biblical right”. Telling a woman that does not stop divorces, even if she does not have a right. It’s a waste of time – deal with the reality.

Finally: someone sent me a link to MIDLIFE For Dummies. What is sad/scary about this very tongue in cheek article is I’ve actually had men say some of what is there as if it was a good (or even) godly plan. I’ve also seen a good many examples of men and women who were doing some of what is “advised” there. If you’re doing anything in that article, I’d suggest a hard look at yourself, and seeking help from someone to help you not do things that can only harm your marriage!

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42 Comments on “Some final thoughts on the woman seeking a divorce

  1. TGH, perhaps there are so many men saying this because for every man who is cheating, there is a woman who is willing to cheat with him.

    The problem with the studies is that folks are simply going to lie about if they are faithful or not.

    If they were truthful, they wouldn’t be cheating. So there will a number of people who lie about the fact they are betraying their spouse.

    The reasons may be different, but I believe that cheaters are evenly represented in both genders for the previously stated reasons.

    The problem is, it’s difficult if not impossible to restore a relationship with someone who is unwilling or unable to be honest. That dishonestly may manifest itself in simply not telling you when she’s unhappy. You know, you ask her about how “we” are or how she is, and her words say, “fine.”

    You later find, when she’s having her affair that she wasn’t fine, and she expected you to “just know”

    This is a very common scenario. I think it’s more common than you are willing to admit.

    Scripture is pretty clear, we are ALL sinners and we all fall short of the glory of God. Not men more than women, not women more than men.

    How we each get to sin may be different, but I don’t think there are any significant differences in how many women vs men are abusive, or unfaithful, or whatever.

    Again, the means may be different, as I believe women perpetrate their abuse emotionally and verbally (where they perceive they have the upper hand) and men do so physically.

    Likewise for affairs. Men have sex to get love, women love to get sex. If they are doing that with someone other than their spouse, it’s an affair.

    I didn’t think my ex-wife was hot for sex when she had her affair. She wanted something, something she couldn’t tell me or describe. I know, I asked. I asked her for just an hour a day together, just her and me so we could be better connected. She wouldn’t even do that, and that was YEARS before she ultimately betrayed me.

    If your wife can’t tell you what she wants, then how is a man supposed to know?

    I read that story over and over again. Folks who believe in the fairy tale. That if you love someone, you will simply know what to do for them. If you have to ask, then the other person doesn’t love you.

    Sorry, but I think the folks who are suggesting that women have as many affairs as men are more clearly observing what is going on.

    The path they take to get to that point may be different, but the destination is the same.

    For every man having an affair, there is a woman who is willing to sleep with someone who is not her husband. Regardless of her marital status, she certainly knows she’s not married to him. So one cannot claim ignorance to the fact that he’s married. They certainly know that she’s not married to him. Certainly if she’s married to someone else. But even when she’s not, she knows she’s not married to him.

    Let’s assume that all women in affairs are unmarried. Do we think that they are suddenly going to honor marriage once they get married?

    Given the fact that 2/3rds to 3/4s of all divorces are sought by women, it seems a pretty difficult sell that women are more committed to marriage than men. Especially when, as you suggest, only about 20% of those divorces involve serious marital misconduct such as abuse or adultery.

    So the bottom line is I’m not surprised at all. I think the guys who’ve been writing you and suggesting this are close to the truth when it comes to the state of affairs (pardon the pun) on Earth with respect to marriage.

    • @Tony – Your even numbers cheat math really does not work. If you have one unmarried prostitute who has sex with fifty married men, that is fifty men cheating and no corresponding women cheating. I would guess that a higher percentage of female adultery is with married men while men are more likely to cheat with a single woman. That also means more men committing adultery than women. If the average women who has sex with married men does so with many men, that will also skew the numbers.
      I realise that people lie, even on anonymous surveys, but for this to explain why we see higher numbers for men would mean woman are more likely to lie on surveys, and recent studies have found that men lie more than women, so if anything we would have to assume the numbers are really higher for men.

      I do not disagree that we all sin, men and women alike. However, I think knowing how men and women are most likely to sin is very importnat. If a man is focused on the possibility that his wife will cheat he is not focused on the things she is far more likely to do, and that’s not helping.

      Yes, I hear the “I can’t tell you” or “If you loved me you would know”. I hate both. Sometimes it’s just that simple, she makes it impossible. However, at least some of the time what that means is she tried to tell him a hundred times in the past and he turned a deaf ear to her. Years later it’s difficult for a third party to know which of those is the situation, and it matters as the two should be addressed in different ways. (I say this in general, not about you, as I don’t know you.)

      Your comment on how commited men and women are to marraige is interesting. Given that women are more built for relationships, I would tend to think they are more concerned about marraige. In young marraige I see far more “commitment” from the average bride. Over the years that tends to even out to some degree – if nothing else it must or she will go crazy. However, to say divorce shows a lack of commitment to marriage is making things far to simple. If two people are in something and one takes is seriously while the other does not, I would expect the one who takes it more seriously to be the one to end it. If it’s no big deal to you, you can ignore the fact it’s a mess far more easily.

      As to the fairytale, you are dead on about that – it is a cause of many marital problems.

      Just my thoughts.

      • Women are not “more built for relationships.” It’s that folks simply fail to value what men bring to relationships and how they express that commitment.

        God made both men and women to work together. He did not make one “more built for relationships” than the other.

        Stop devaluing what men bring to the table. Stop spreading the lie that men are not as “relational” as women. It’s not true.

        It’s not like men lost more of that relational drive than women since they were created relative to women.

        The pop psychology Oprahfication of relationships isn’t helping.

        As long as folks keep parroting the lie that men are not as relational, women will continue to feel entitled and men will continue to feel like why bother.

        After all, if men are being what God (not some earthly psych Dr) says they are to be, and keep getting told that they are not “as relational” why would men continue to try in relationships?

        They should. I’m not saying they shouldn’t. But by and large, the men I know ARE TRYING. They aren’t cheating on their wives, they are trying to be spiritual leaders, they are trying to remain pure, to be honorable.

        I don’t know what men you are hanging out with. But the men I know are laying down their lives every day. They are seeking to what God would have them to do.

        I don’t see men who are ill behaved, or not committed to their relationships, or addicted, or philandering.

        Yet many have faced an unwanted divorce, either in their distant past, or even more recently.

        One is an associate pastor in my church. I don’t think you could meet a man who has more passion for Christ. When he’s not working on our satellite campus, he’s at home with his sick wife.

        His first wife left him while he was in the Seminary.

        I could tell similar stories about half the men in our small group. There is the guy a bit younger than me who moved out here to follow his ex-wife who betrayed him and left him so he could be with his kid.

        So where are all these men who are not committed to their families, who are betraying their wives?

        I don’t see them. I see men, in the church, who’ve been abandoned or betrayed by spouses who allegedly were “in the church” or were “Christians.”

        You and I simply disagree abou the affair thing. If one person is married, BOTH in that affair are committing adultery. Not just the married spouse.

        From Dictionary.com

        Adultery – voluntary sexual intercourse between a married person and someone other than his or her lawful spouse.

        What makes it adultery is one or both are married. But both are guilty of committing adultery. Not just one.

        If not adultery, the fornication. Either way, it’s cheating God’s plan for sex.

        I don’t think the prostitute thing is statistically meaningful. I doubt the percentage of those events is low compared to others.

        But you could probably find as many “pool boys” who provide service to many clients as well to earn a little off the books money.

        So for every scenario where it seems one gender outpaces another in sexual misconduct, I’m confident that I can find counter-examples.

        The bottom line is, there is no moral superiority based on gender. Each gender has areas of relative strength and weakness.

        If we didn’t need one another, then one would be redundant.

        God didn’t design marriage to be two husbands or two wives. They each have their own roles to play. Both equally valuable and each are equipped to play their roles.

        Neither is more wired, more qualified or better at the process called relationship than the other.

        • Tony – Given that the parts of the brain involved in social contact are larger and more active in average female brains, I think it’s accurate to say they are better at relationship. In the same way, the average male brain is better at spacial relationship, and I think it would be accurate to say they are more built for tasks that involved spacial relationships.

          I agree God did not intend us to be this way, I see it as a part of the fall. Through most of history women were very dependent on men, and more dependent on the help of others of their gender than men. This means being able to read a situation was critical for a long and healthy life.

          I am not devaluing what men bring to the table, I am pointing out that men and women bring different strengths and weaknesses to the table. Again, I see this as reality, and I find it wise to understand and accommodate those differences. And please believe me that Oprah would have huge problems with what I think about women!

          Yes, a lot of guys are working hard to be what they think God intended them to be. Unfortunately some of them have a less than accurate idea of what that is, and what parts of that are most important. When the goal is wrong, the amount of effort is admirable but it’s not taking anyone where they want or need to be. I would say the same exact thing about women, mostly in different areas.

          On the adultery count – if you want to call a single woman have sex with a married man an adulteress, I won’t argue that point. However, that does not make that single lady a wife. My point is and has been that more HUSBANDS than WIVES commit adultery. Maybe I’ve not been clear enough about that – I am talking about the rates of cheating in married men versus married women. That is what I see, and what the stats say. It’s not what you see, and you think the stats are flawed because women lie about adultery three times as often as men. I don’t see either of us budging on that.

          You said “The bottom line is, there is no moral superiority based on gender. Each gender has areas of relative strength and weakness.”

          I agree 100% with that, and I am all about pointing those differences out to men and women. Understanding our own weakness and temptations helps us to not blow it, while understanding the weakness and temptations of our spouse helps us guard them.

          Finally, I think you and I may define “relationship” differently. To me it’s a component of a marraige, while you seem to use it more as a synonym for marriage. You will find many places where I talk about the emotional, mental, relational, sexual or spiritual parts of a marraige. I will try to be more clear about what I mean when I do this.

      • The thing about the one who takes it more seriously. I don’t know. The way I saw my marriage was it’s a vow before God. I didn’t know how to reach my now ex-wife. I prayed, I asked her what I could do better, etc. I got no where.

        I wanted to leave. But I vowed to love her for the rest of my life, before God and the gathering of our families and friends. I couldn’t let her down, or dishonor God by just walking out. Even though I wanted to. Even though I had opportunities those first three years when I traveled with my job. (Never once unfaithful, FWIW.)

        You don’t leave something you are committed to. The very act of an affair, or walking out proves the lack of commitment.

        Marriage is one of those things where commitment is best measured by the latest thing you’ve done.

        Think of it this way, you can tell the truth for the first 20 years of your life, but if you start lying and keep on lying, you are a liar.

        The same goes with marriage, if you are committed to your marriage for the first 7 years, and then betray and/or abandon your spouse, you are not committed to your marriage.

        It doesn’t matter that you were committed before. What matters is right now, today. Where do you stand on your marriage today?

        If you left it, and your spouse didn’t want it to end, and/or worked to save it after you left, then you are not more committed.

        Sometimes things are that simple. You marry your spouse and you honor your vows. It’s that simple.

        It’s not easy, but it is that simple.

        • And like I said before, I am not perfect. And when I had so much that I was dying, I was plenty ready for it to be over, either the marriage or my life. It wouldn’t have mattered at that point.

        • Tony – You said “Marriage is one of those things where commitment is best measured by the latest thing you’ve done.”

          In some ways yes, but not completely. If a man beats his wife for a decade, but is decent for the month before she leaves him do we commend him and condemn her? (An extreme example to make the point.)

          You mention honouring the marriage vows. One of those is to love. God also commands men (but oddly not women) to love their spouse. I’ve seen men who would never cheat or leave who fail spectacularly at loving their bide (again I am talking in general, not about you). In my mind such a man has broken his vows far more and far more often than the man who has a one night affair, repents, and does not do it again.

  2. Coming from the perspective of a husband, who lved God, who married young, who came from a disfunctional family, and now by the grace of God has learned so much about God’s love and it application to my life, even being able to provide pastoral counseling – both pre and post marriage, I have found though 36 plus years that a woman’s sexual infidelity is usually the result of emotional infidelity first. That emotional infidelity comes as a result of another man providing to her emotionally what she is not getting from her husband and many times he does not have a clue. Sometimes that is because of selfishness and other times because the wife is unable to communicate to her husband in a way he understands her needs, especially emotional needs. Sometimes the wife does not know, she just knows she not getting what she desires. Having witnessed that in almost every case of a wife being unfaithful to her husband, I have also noticed that a wife will become, both postive and negative, what her husband makes her become as a result of his actions, attitudes, grace, mercy, and compassion. The longer a couple is married, the more visible this becomes. Many times because a wife is being made into something she does not like, even detests, she will withdraw from her husband as a way to protect herself from what he is doing to her. When this happens, she unkowningly becomes a target for attention from men that makes her feel like a woman again – the woman she believes she was created to be.
    There is so much more to discuss on this matter, now is not the time.

    • I don’t think we can MAKE anyone become anything.

      The problem with using this line of thinking is you then have to apply it both ways.

      In other words, if we blame the husband for what the wayward wife does, saying he MADE her become what she is, then isn’t she on the hook for making him be the husband he is? The husband that can’t or won’t meet her needs?

      It’s a dangerous road when you start blaming others for the behavior of folks. You get what we have today, an entitlement mentality with little to no responsibility for personal choices.

      We wouldn’t accept it if a man suggested his wife MADE him have an affair, so it’s equally offensive to suggest that a husband MAKES a woman have an affair.

      Affairs happen because folks don’t have boundaries on their own behaviors. We know the progression of sin, it starts in the mind, with a thought, and then grows into ultimate action.

      Sin doesn’t start with he/she made me do it.

      James 1:12-15 tell us:

      “12 Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. 13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone. 14 But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. 15 Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.”

      The unfaithful spouse, both wife and husband are not carried away by what their spouse did or didn’t do. Scripture tells us they are carried away by their own lusts.

      That may not help the husband win his unfaithful or walk-away wife back. But it does protect him from those who would do him harm by trying to lay false blame on him for the choices his wife has made.

      I’m not against a husband learning to be a Godly husband as defined by God. But I’m 110% against those who would teach that any husband or wife causes their spouse to sin.

      God’s word is clear, sin is born from the lust in the sinners heart. My sin is not born in the heart of others. Neither is the sin in anyone else, regardless of their gender.

      I won’t say any more on this because I don’t think this is where TGH wants to go with the topic.

      • Tony – you said:

        “In other words, if we blame the husband for what the wayward wife does, saying he MADE her become what she is, then isn’t she on the hook for making him be the husband he is? The husband that can’t or won’t meet her needs?”

        My take on this is that we should each choose to take responsibility for what we may have encouraged others to do, and for what we did, regardless of what others did to encourage our actions. I think all should do this, men and women. If either one does it, things can change, if both do it, miracles can happen.

        As to causing another to sin, I’d point you to Mark 9:42. As best as I can tell the Greek does not actually say we cause another to sin, but rather that we can entice another to sin. Jesus seems to think that doing that is a very bad thing, with very bad consequences for the one who does the enticing. I think the one who entices pays a price even of the one they entice does NOT give into sin.

        • Entice is very different from MAKE. I doubt any husband entices their wife to cheat on him or to just walk away.

          I think Mark 9:42 goes hand in hand with what I’m saying. The WaW/WW are both enticed AWAY from their husbands. They certainly are not MADE to leave or to betray their husbands.

          There may be a few edge cases where the man wants a threesome or something like that. I believe in the circles I run in, that would be an outlier.

          But then, I used to think the cheating wife was an outlier too, but found that to not be true.

          • Tony – If a man does not meet his wife’s emotional needs, he is enticing her to have an affair. In the same way, the woman who does not meet her husband’s sexual needs is enticing him to cheat.

            If you did not give your childen enough food, you would be enticing them to steal food. Not giving one’s spouse what they need is the same thing. It’s just as wrong, and as I read MK 9:24 there is a consequence for all of those things.

    • John Delcamp – Great comments, thanks.

      I think we men have a drive to “win” things. When we get married, we have won the woman, and too often we figure that’s it. Rather than working to make it better and better, we look for new challenging.

      We need to do better about telling men that they need to keep fighting for their marriages, and keep winning their brides.

      • Here is something I have used through the years to remind me to fight for her – it came from my 5 minute, 3 point pre-martial counseling:
        The third point is the one I am referring to –
        1. Consider God
        2. Count the Coppers
        3. Continue the Courtship

        If we men would continue the courtship and work as hard to keep our wives as we did to get them, our marriages would be different. Also, I notice that we spend a lot of time and energy preparing for a 30 minutes wedding ceremony and very little time preparing for a life time of marriage. Preparation includes planning how we will continue the courtship.

      • We need to do better at giving the effective ways of doing this AND protecting them when the suggested ways don’t work.

        We do a great job of blaming men for what their wives do. But we don’t give them any tips that work.

        After all, when my ex-wife left, what has been described here was by and large what I did, to no effect.

        She got the divorce she wanted, she remained the custodial parent, and she doesn’t even admit to this day that what she had was an affair even though she was asked in the depositions if she was sleeping with the other man and said yes.

        I wonder how many women who suggest they are not having an affair are simply denying the fact that just because they’ve chosen to unilaterally emotionally and eventually physically divorce their husbands, that doesn’t mean that their new romance is not an affair.

        After all, if they don’t define what they are doing as wrong, why would we expect them to suddenly say it’s an affair when asked in a survey?

        • Tony, I am so sorry you are hurting and I am so sorry that you feel you didn’t have the tools to learn “how to” from your church or support system. I can assure you that I spend time teaching men to be men of God especially in their relationships with their wives and children. I do see some men who reject the knowledge because to be honest, living like Christ is very, very difficult especially when everyone around you is doing otherwise. I will pray for you that God brings healing to you.

          • I think you are missing what I’m saying. We don’t have a shortage of men or women telling husbands what to do.

            We have a shortage of effective advice. I’ve already applied the advice presented here.

            It doesn’t work.

            It doesn’t work to make a better husband when the wife refuses to do her part.

            It doesn’t help to make a better husband as long as the wife is hell bent on her affair, or just “not him.”

            As I’ve said before, even Christ is rejected. I believe scripture tells us more will reject Him than accept Him.

            Why do we expect that being more Christ-Like will help win back the WaW or the WW?

            In my experience, having walked that road, it doesn’t work.

            I’m not saying we shouldn’t be that. I’m saying it doesn’t matter. I’ve not personally observed that it matters to the WW certainly.

            As much as folks would minimize that case, I suggest there is little different from the WW and WaW. Both have decided that their husband is not the one to meet her needs.

            The only difference between the two is the WW already has her man, the WaW has an idea in her head, and that idea doesn’t include her husband.

            Personally, that’s very little difference. Both result in a hardening of her heart, the very thing God says he hates about divorce.

            Sorry, it’s time to stop blaming husbands for the choices these wives are making.

            The pain I have doesn’t come from what she did, it comes from all the false blame laid at the feet of husbands like me for the choices wives make.

            • Tony – You said “Sorry, it’s time to stop blaming husbands for the choices these wives are making.”

              I agree, but it’s also valid to point out what he may have done to push her in that direction. In the same way, we should point out what a woman does to push her husband to do something he should not. Not doing this is, to me, just ignoring the obvious.

  3. “Here’s the thing, women are far more about relationships, feelings, and emotions than they are about sex.”

    My wife and I have not had sex for something on the order of two months. She’s claiming another of her manifold physical conditions. Nonetheless, this morning after getting up and having my time of prayer, I slipped back into bed to hold her, knowing sex was off the table. No response. Later, when she woke up, I could tell she was angry. She said Fridays are her morning to sleep in and that I had awakened her and she couldn’t get back to sleep. We also can’t cuddle at night because she has to sit up in bed reading – with the light 0n when I’m exhausted from a long day of work – until long after I’ve fallen asleep. So apparently she is neither about relationships and emotions nor about sex. At this point, she seems to be all about ice cream.

    • Wow. This comment tells me a LOT about why your wife doesn’t want to connect with you emotionally (much less sexually). What you wrote is very cutting and horrible. If my husband ever even thought such a thing, much less WROTE it, I’d know the trust between us was broken.

      My advice? Fix yourself before you think to “fix” her. If you start respecting her, she might reciprocate.

      • Observer – You may be right, but maybe not. I’ve seen men who would not find passing a kidney stone a reason for her to say to sex, but I’ve also seen women who have had a “good reason” to say to sex for ever day for the last few years.

        From here, and hearing only one side, we can’t begin to guess at the real situation. Odds are both have done some things wrong, and each if more focused on the other than on themselves – but that’s just a guess that is statistically fairly safe.

      • Dear Observer, let me see if I can give you the same treatment you gave Mr. Krebbs.
        Wow. This comment tells me a LOT about what your husband feels and why he can’t come to you when he is in pain. What you wrote is very cutting and horrible. Mr. Krebbs makes a comment that reveals his emotional pain and then you blame him for the thing that is causing his pain. Then you tell us that if your husband was in this kind of emotional pain you would, well, let’s just say you would probably behave badly. One phrase keeps coming to me “the eternal solipsism of the female mind.”
        Paul, this women and her comment tells you all you need to know as to why your advice will not and cannot work or as a counselor once told me “you cannot be rational with an inherently irrational system.”

      • Observer- i am a woman and if my husband was reaching out for help to fix the situation not end it, i would be happy. Most guys i would say do not open them selves to ask cause they dont want people knowing there business.

        Marriage isnt meant for selfish partners but for giving to the other when they most need it. Holding back sex is a form of punishment, a way to control or give emotional abuse. If u have physical issues in why u cant have sex then there are others way to make your partner satisfied. That goes for almost anything else as well. If u wanna read cuddle first. Compromie is essential in a relationship.

        Bill- tho i get what you are trying to say, slamming her isnt getting the point across. If that was not your point so be it. I hate to point fingers but… That seems to be a typical thing for people who are controlling. You said let me see if i can give you the same treatment. What that says is you treat fire with fire and in life that doesnt work.

        • Kori, thank you for responding to my comment.
          What I was trying to do is hold up a mirror. So you would be correct if I appeared to be slamming because it is exactly what Observer was doing. Sometimes we only see our true attitudes when they are reflected back at us and we have the intellectual honesty to see it.
          Sometimes treating fire with fire is exactly the thing to do. Just sayin’.
          Why no comment on solipsism?

          • Bill – I tend to not try to pick fights about every oppinion someone has about women in general. It would be long and a never ending battle. Women tend to see men in one form and men see women in a certain form. Honestly in either direction its not accurate. My ex is nothing like my fiance now. Not all men are the same and I know I am not like the standard idea of what women are. We all (men and women alike) have our moments when we best not act on our thoughts and counter think what is the right way to act. “when we are on an emotional high, our intellegence is low” there for thinking before speaking or doing is ideal.

      • Sorry Observer, but I see nothing “cutting and horrible” about his post. Perhaps you can enlighten us on what precisely is wrong with his approach? Is it simply the fact that he wants sex with his wife?

      • Let’s all play nice! We have a part of half the story for each person, and that leaves a lot for us to fill in. That filling in is almost never all correct, and often project from our own experiential.

  4. TGH: This is my first comment ever although i have been following this series in particular having gone through a divorce and by the grace of GOD, had my marriage restored. There was no infidelity in our divorce but none the less it was the best thing to ever happen to me. Upon this divorce I accepted Christ as my LORD and SAVIOR and through much biblical counseling by myself, then as a couple prior to being re-married, I truly learned what loving someone really means. The bible is all about personal responsibility, especially when it comes to our loving our spouse. Loving our spouse is about our responsibility to GOD, not our responce to our spouses performance. While we were dead in our trespasses and sin ( our performance) GOD loved us so much that as it says in Isaiah 53:10 But the LORD was pleased to crush him (JESUS), putting him to grief; If he would render himself a guilt offering. ( his performance) What a contrast true love is. What i’m trying to say to fix any marriage each one has to look at themselves, and love your spouse as to the LORD, regardless of their performance. Remove the log from your own eye then look at the speck in hers. We will not give an account of how our spouses loved or treated us they will, but we sure will give an account of how we loved them as Ephesians 5:24 says Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and GAVE himself up for her. If a man loves his wife like this and the wife still has an affair, she has personal responsibility to GOD for her actions not the husband. So guys love your wives as to the LORD regardless of her performance, and if your in a difficult season of your life and marriage there is no better way to live CHRISTIAN than loving someone most when they deserve to be loved the least. Look at the picture of CHRIST giving himself up for the church. Blesssing to all.

    • saved sinner – Thanks, great stuff. What an example of God brining good out of bad!

      I liked “We will not give an account of how our spouses loved or treated us they will, but we sure will give an account of how we loved them” – very good (stealing it for twitter!)

      • Excellent! The problem with me ( and perhaps many others ) is that I am human, and as such, I have weaknesses, too. I have not been strong enough to love that way in the face of adversity; thank the Lord, that is part of what the atonement was all about. And he knew that I couldn’t do it perfectly either; I keep trying to do better.

    • It excites me when I see that God’s word and His ways really do work when people apply them. Praise God for what He has done in your life. Keep running hard after God and keep allow His Spirit to develop you into the image of Christ.

  5. It does surprise me to hear that some think the only reason a woman could be unhappy in a marriage is because of sex problems. That seems quite absurd to me. Unhappiness in any part of our life can come from many things besides sex! It has for me; I had unhappy times long before I ever knew anything about sex!

  6. I might have been misunderstood because in no way was I placing blame or do I blame others. I see it as a need for both the husband and wife to take responsibility for their actions and attitudes, especially the husband since God designed him to be the leader of the family and realize that our “sins” don’t just affect us. They affect those around us. We can’t change someone else, we can only change ourselves. Yet, at the same time we can influence others by doing things that causes them to react, either positively or negatively. Selfishness, the opposite of love, makes us men sit back and expect our wives to change to meet us and that same selfish attitude opens the dooor of opportunity for them to consider having their needs met by someone who does not appear to be selfish. Yes, it is her decision and she will be responsible before God for it. But as the leader of the family, men are to be a spiritual covering for their wife as Christ is for the church and protect her from unnecssary temptations, not create circumstances to make temptation easy.

    • I guess I’m wondering how men are making temptation easy? It’s not like I or other betrayed husbands were out there saying, “Honey, I think you need to sleep with other men, it will make our marriage and family better.”

      My question is, is it a lack of leadership, or a lack of follower-ship?

      Unless the betrayed husband is actively LEADING his wife to her affair partner, I’d suggest it’s a lack of follower-ship.

  7. I was married for 12 years. Tho after 3 months of being together it started to get emotionally abusive, i know if my needs were met in others way by my ex, i would not of left. I cant speak for all women, but i can say that closeness is important. The need to feel wanted and desired and the need for affection not in a negative way. Not to be rejected sexually either. This might sound as if it is all about sex, but really its not. After the 3 month period sex became almost non existant. When i got pregnant after being together for 6 months it was a no brainer when i would be due cause we had only had sex once in the 3 months. No not because i didnt want to but cause he didnt. What does that do to a womens self esteme that her own husband doesnt desire her. He didnt have an issue with being able to have sex and i also dont believe he was getting it else where. There was no little kisses thru the day just ur standard kiss when he got home or before he left and an i love u morning and night or hanging up from phone. When i would tell him of my needs he would after a while say i was wired wrong. After about a year i realized from playing online and chatting with the opponents that i was getting positive attention and it was from men. I guess i made excuses in my head that it was ok cause i wasnt really cheating. I wasnt having sex with anybody just getting attention. I have heard of emotional affairs but didnt think this was the same. I left my ex 3 times prior to the last i always took him back. Things didnt change. I would just revert back to my online games. We were only going thru the motions and so was he. I was making my plans to leave and it took 7 yrs to get up the courage to do it for the final time. Of course i tried the fireproof method a couple years before i left but it didnt help. I had cheated on him he knew and i was at wrong for it. I felt if he was gonna acuse me of it all the time well then so be it. I tried to work it out again cause now its all my fault for cheating. In the end in his eyes he did nothing wrong and it was all my fault and in mine it was his. Its not about sex its about being desired, wanted, loved and important enough to put energy into.

    • And I have had plenty of years of emotional abuse from my wife too. It’s really a miracle that we are still married and doing better now. It’s a miracle that I am not dead.

      • Emotional abuse is bad in all directions. Most times i have found emotional abuse is about control. I agree that emotional abuse is not gender based. I feel some dont know they do it and are allowed to get away with it then it turns bad. Where others are very manipulative about it. I am sorry evan that u have had to endure that and kudos to you for sticking it out. I am different where after 12 yrs of marriage i felt i was not born to have a life that i had to endure this treatment. I hope life is or gets better for you. Find your true you and no matter what dont let anyone have control over who you are suppose to be.

  8. Referring to the article, divorce is not God’s will. People however, will seek divorce due to the hardness of their hearts – Matthew 19:8.

    Adultery is not the only reason a wife would seek to divorce her husband. Women are emotional creatures, if she is emotionally ‘crushed’ repeatedly she may seek a divorce or counselling? It’s sad that the ‘little things’ that can be done to save a marriage are not, then when it escalates to divorce the husband or wife claim to have been taken by surprise, when they did not commit to working on their marriage/problem. A good marriage is a joint effort, but when only one spouse is committed, then it’s time to take it to the Lord in prayer and fasting and let him do his work, Matthew 7: 7-8, Isaiah 58 and Proverbs 21:1. However, I speak from the point of view of marriage between believers.

    I also hope this helps in relation to previous comments made in this forum? It is not easy when you are going through marital problems, but with God all things are possible, the problem is, we rarely call or leave it until it’s too late! I just keep hearing God saying, ‘Call upon me in the day of trouble and I will answer you’ Psalm 50: 15.

  9. I have detached my self from my husband which I have left him 3 times & this is the final straw. He is controlling & manipulates me by telling me that he will change. He tries for a few and then goes back to his own ways making me feel disappointed, angry & manipulated. I been waiting for him to stop being emotionally and physically abusive for 21 years. He never let’s me express my feelings. If he doesn’t like what I’m saying, he starts shouting and that’s the end of that and my feeling have been neglected. He provides financially, material wise I have everything but not emotionally. :(

  10. Am just an over exerted  today for what this great man call DR ADAGBA of adagbaspiritualtemple@yahoo.com has just done in my marital life, after all the emotional pain that i have being passing through all this years have be turn to joy .and i will like you on this forum to help me in thanking he because for the past two years my husband has been cheating on me with a lady and this has course the family a lot of problems and our baby Evonne where the one perpetual taking the pain because at this time my husband don’t normally come home to ask after the child or even care about  what the child needed so with all this problems i was not happy in my marriage and i started going for different kind of marriage cancelling and looking for solution every where not until this faithful day when i was browsing on the internet i saw a testimony shared by miss Tessy Jerry Uk about this DR ADAGBA  and i also contacted him for help and that was how he gave me some instructions and and i followed what ever he told me and i was surprise when he said to me go my child for all will be fine within the next 24 hours .and within the 24 hours i actually received a call from my husband who has not called me for some months now asking after the child and i . and that was how was the end of my marriage problems . so this is why i promise to testify to the whole world about this man DR ADAGBA and if any is also depress with such problems contact him now on:adagbaspiritualtemple@yahoo.com  and you will also find success and all your heart desire will be granted by
    DR ADAGBA, of : adagbaspiritualtemple@yahoo.com

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