Are you sure you’re really done with your marriage?
I’ve been asked that question many times. At first it frustrated me, but I know why it was asked.
A single mother of four little ones is a heavy burden to carry. It is scary actually.
Would it have been easier to suck it up and just stay with him, despite his adulterous ways and emotional distance, for financial security?
Honestly I did consider it. But I just could not withstand it. My heart and soul just could not stand one minute of it.
I know there are many of you in similar situations. Your marriage is in trouble and you are seriously considering going your separate way. But before you do…
Have you done everything to try to save your marriage?
I did. With all my heart I know that I did everything I could to try to save it. And now that it’s over, I am at peace with my decision.
So for those of you entertaining the idea of leaving, perhaps consider doing some of the following tips. If nothing improves at least you will know that you tried to save it.
I prayed daily for him. Prayed that people other would see him as a man of integrity. Prayed that he would have a clear vision of where to lead our family. Prayed that he would see me with fresh eyes and remember why he married me. Everyday I prayed for him
Make time for him.
At one point there were things that I was doing that were distracting me from nurturing my marriage. So I left it. As much as I enjoyed it, I gladly left it all to make time for him. Being a stay at home mom left me pretty drained, but I made every effort to be pleasant around him. Whenever he wanted to be with me without the kids surrounding us, I would put on a movie or ask my sister to watch the kids. I put my time with him high on my list of priorities.
Take care of yourself.
Early in our marriage I really let myself go. I gained 40lbs, would not bother with fixing my hair or doing my makeup. I lived in jean skirts and sweat pants. It became a problem. Probably not so much because of the way I looked, but rather because I just did not care. I made every effort to lose weight (I’ve lost 50lbs since then) and began a bit of a makeover. Turns out, it makes me feel better too!
I read Love Dare and Love and Respect. More importantly I applied the lessons I learned. It wasn’t always pleasant. I definitely felt like I was the only one working…and I was really. But I did the work and hoped for the best.
Counseling and Workshops.
After the first revelation of infidelity, we went to one of the best therapists in the country specializing in affairs. After the 2nd, we went to some workshops on improving our communication. It did improve things for a while, and personally I gained a lot from it.
Talk and Wait.
I let him know that I was considering leaving and I waited to see what his reaction was. It was usually anger. I know now that he was already involved with someone else and his anger was probably his way of pushing me further away. Um, it worked.
So before you leave your spouse, my hope is that you try some of these suggestions and attempt to save it. It’s hard being a single mama, but if there is no other choice at least have peace with that choice.