Recently I had a conversation with my soon-to-be-ex’s brother. His entire family has chosen to believe the lies my stbx is telling them, choosing to ignore the validity of anything I have shared with them or turn a blind eye to the person they know I am. In their minds I am the reason my marriage has fallen apart. My stbx’s pornography use, emotional abuse, neglect, abandonment and narcissistic controlling behavior all irrelevant in their eyes.
In this particular conversation (which I have had many similar ones with the entire family) this brother-in-law kept telling me that God absolutely never sanctioned divorce. That there was never a justifiable cause in God’s eye to leave a marriage. That my stbx didn’t have to change a single behavior, that simply saying he was different or changed was enough. But, that even if he never changed anything (which he hasn’t) I still would be damned to hell if I left.
I don’t believe any of this. I learned for myself very early on after D-day that my husband was entirely responsible for his own salvation and that God did expect more. I also learned what recovery and addiction behavior look like. When there has been a betrayal as intimate and personal as sexual infidelity there is a long and arduous road to rebuild a relationship. In my case, as I stood back and took a honest look at the toxicity of my marriage, most of which I felt the effects of our entire marriage but didn’t have words to describe until after D-day, I realized everything had to change if there was going to be any hope to heal our relationship.
I decided I could support my husband in recovery behaviors but could not support him in addiction behaviors (I’ll write more about both another time). This is something I have held on to for the last 21 months since D-day, and especially the last year as I filed for divorce when it was absolutely evident that my husband would not choose recovery.
Today I was listening the a chapter in the book of Matthew in the New Testament. This is what stood out to me,
Matthew 10:13 “And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it be not worthy, let your peace return unto you”
THIS is exactly what I have known I needed to do because there is no peace when I am with my husband. He is in active addiction, lies, secrecy, shame. There cannot be any peace in his life.
I have fought with everything I’ve had for the last 21 months to restore peace into my life after my husband shattered my entire world, everything. I cannot support superficial, counterfeit “recovery actions” because doing so destroys my peace. My spirit knows it’s not real.
I love the end of the scripture in Matthew, let your peace return unto you. I can chose to leave. I can chose to put myself in a situation that is healing and peaceful. I do not have to stay. And I can have peace.