I’ve been in an abusive marriage for sometime. Priest sent me to a secular counselor that encouraged me to leave. I stopped counseling because I thought I was suppose to stay no matter what. It can go months without abuse and then WHAM! What does the church say on this? there is not a third party, i’m just tired of being abused.
I am no expert on the Church teachings on separation/divorce, but I am certain that it does not teach you have to stay in an abusive marriage!!
You can remove yourself from a dangerous and unhealthy situation without compromising your vows. You may move out and be safe. Making this move may be the very thing that forces your husband to take a look at himself and get some help. “If nothing changes, nothing changes.”
You can let him know that his behavior is not acceptable, that he is not honoring “his” vow to love and cherish you and you will be helping him to honor his commitment by not allowing it.
In the meantime, you will need to be emotionally rehabilitated by seeking some counsel. The very fact that you have put up with such brutality is a sign that you may be lacking in healthy “self-love.” Counselling will help you to know how to love yourself properly. When you changes your standards of what you will accept from your husband, he will have to learn a new way of relating to you.
Trust in God.
A priest once told me in confession, "Often when we do was is best/right for ourselves, it is also what is best/right for the “other.” Be at peace, God is with you and working through you.
For discerning you need to:
Identify objectively what is your abusive marriage? What are the constitutive elements of this abusive marriage, that are real, realistic, objective, factual, serious and grave?
to try to identify all the reasons and to try realistic, real, fair and moderate solutions, if it is possible. You need, only, to attempt, a moral obligation of means.
After, with the help of your priest, your catholic lawyer and your catholic counselor in marriage, and after asking the help of the Holy Trinity, of Sainte Mary, of Saint Joseph by the prayers, you can take freely your decision, in all conscience.
Of course, if this abusive marriage is dangerous for you and for your children, you have the natural right and the catholic right to leave this unfair and awful situation. I hope the best for you.
removing yourself from danger and harm which is what the counselor that the priest sent you to, told you to do is not wrong at all and I’ve seen different priests say the same thing. This is not a divorce and this maybe saving yourself from harm. You are not required at all to stay in the same house or home with someone that is abusing you. Removing yourself from harm, calling the police and making a report of abuse (I am assuming this is physical) is not wrong at all and actually is it against the law to be abused. Removing yourself, trying to break this cycle, getting help or by leaving forcing the other spouse to get help might save your marriage than end it. The Catholic Church does not recommend in anything I’ve read that you have to stay and submit to abuse like some of the conservative evangelical protestant churches recommend for spouses that are being abused do. You are not a punching bag for anyone and no one should be treating you or anyone else this way. It is against the law. I would go back to the priest you originally saw and discuss the fact that for your safety, you are removing yourself from the home. Likewise, you should call a local shelter for a place to stay for a while. You will be in my prayers.
Can. 1153 §1. If either of the spouses causes grave mental or physical danger to the other spouse or to the offspring or otherwise renders common life too difficult, that spouse gives the other a legitimate cause for leaving, either by decree of the local ordinary or even on his or her own authority if there is danger in delay.
There it is, in canon law: You have the authority to leave on your own without permission from anyone if there is danger in delay. Just the knowledge that any day could be the day you will be abused again is harmful, even if “it can go months without abuse”. Verbal abuse or the threat of abuse is abusive, too, so don’t think that it isn’t “real” abuse unless there is a physical attack. If you are in the least uncertain, talk to your pastor and he will assure you that you have permission to leave immediately.
Please leave ASAP! I would highly encourage you to seek advice from a local crisis center, as they have a lot of experience in the safest ways to leave a dangerous spouse. Don’t delay. Call them right away. If you can’t find a local number, the national crisis web site can help you: thehotline.org/get-help/help-in-your-area/
Seperations are absolutely allowed by the Church for just reasons and abuse is one of them. You would even be allowed to get a civil divorce (though you would stll be married) if that is the best/only real way to protect yourself from your abusive husband. It doesn’t matter whether or not children are present, the Church does not tell women to stay in abusive situations!!
Saint Monica and Saint Rita were both married to abusive men, they never ceased to pray for them and their children. Miracle did happened.
I am not an expert but i think that if your life is in danger, it is an exceptional case where you can leave. Seek for different priest and pray for the right priest to be put on your path. Say the rosary and pray for the salvation of your husband soul.
I used to think that nobody could change, until i saw the miracle of persistent prayer.
Ask for protection from God, and you will be granted. Pray sweet heart, only God can guide you and he uses priest to do so, but pray for someone that is guided by the Holy spirit.
Ask for prayer for your husband.
Typically nobody can change unless they truly want this in their heart but the power of prayer truly has no limitation. Mother Mary can crush the devil with her feet. Pray to her, she will protect you. Your husbands is dearly love by God, pray for his child to go to him.
Blessings and love
Please Dear God Our Heavenly Father, The Holy Spirit, Dear Jesus Christ our Saviour and Dear Our Lady Mary Mother of Jesus, through Archangel Michael and all Archangels could you please bathe this Lady (Your Child) and Children (if any) in Thy Divine Love and Protection, Health and Safety now and for Eternity Amen.
Through the husband: I bathe you Satan in the Victorious blood of Jesus Christ Our Saviour’s Victorious Resurrection over you Satan and command you to leave this Lady’s marriage now and for Eternity.
Hail Mary Full of Grace the Lord is with thee,
blessed art Thou among women
and Blessed is the fruit of Thy Womb Jesus.
Holy Mary Mother of God, pray for us sinners now
and at the hour of our death
Ask Jesus to protect you each day from this person and make the sign of the Cross in your mind in front of him picturing Jesus in Heaven, when he arrives home and when he becomes abusive. Talk to Jesus in your mind at home asking Jesus to send His most protective Guardian Angels to be with you at all times now and after you have moved.
Wear either Rosary Beads (blessed), The Holy Scapula, a Cross blessed by your local Priest, or a Holy Card of Jesus and Our Lady Mary in your pocket, particularly whilst in the home.
Lived it and Jesus is there for you at all times when you ask.
I support the advice to speak to one’s pastor, but I think you’re assertion that he will assure you of the rectitude in leaving is overstated, if only for the reason that the term verbal abuse is itself abused (my own pastor told me as much). The operative word in the canon law is “grave”. It is my understanding that in the pre-1983 code there were examples given in the annotations to 1153 that set the bar very high for separation that are no longer provided, although since the 1983 did not change canon law in this regard, their absence does not mean they are not useful.
The OP may very well be in a position where separation is warranted, but there is a very good reason canon law requires her to seek permission to separate.
This is not entirely true. It is not necessary for your life to be endagered, if someone is truly being abused they can seperate whether or not there is a direct threat to their life. Also, seperatingg doesn’t mean that you stop praying for your spouse, or that you give up on them, it just means that you recognize that at present it is an unhealthy situation. If a miracle occurs due to your prayers and your spouse has a true change of heart, then you can move back in, but that is the exception rather than the rule, one should not stay in a truly abusive situation just because they are hoping for a miracle.
As others have pointed out, you are allowed (and I would highly encourage you to do so) to leave and move somewhere where you are safe. This does not “end” your sacramental marriage so you are not allowed to marry somebody else (you would need to get an annulment for that).
But I also wanted to tell you how sorry I am you are in that situation and I kind of want to apologize to you and every woman who has ever had to go through something like this on behalf of all men. It is such a terrible thing and it always breaks my heart when I hear about such a case. All I can do from a distance is pray for you and I hope everybody who’s reading this will do the same. But please get help (contact close friends or family members if you can also, if they knew about this they would all want to help) and make sure you are safe.