Conditions for Reuniting


#1

My wife has moved out. If she decides she wants to come back I feel I must require she meet certain conditions like :wearing her ring in public; making a verbal promise not to flirt with men, especially ones who have propositioned her at work; moving out of an apartment she sometimes stays in with a female co-worker when she works late, since her friend has a live-in boyfriend; put me back on her bank account as a joint holder; stop taking dance lessons with my son that include dancing with other men; introduce me to the man at work she had a three-week flirtacious exchange with or quit her job so she is not around him anymore.

You should know that besides the most recent flirtacious affair, my wife had an actual physcial affair first about 6 years ago. She told me about the affair and then went back to him again before she ended it, but then started a flirtacious affair with another man for a few weeks and then ended that and started a career in law enforcement. Then, within one year of being on the job, admitted to another flirtacious affair of three weeks that I mentioned above. This latest verbal affair was about four year ago, but she only told me about it about one year ago because she thought I was going to find out due to an investigation at her work regarding a related matter.

Do these conditions seem unreasonable or immoral, especially given my wife’s aforementioned history? If:( my wife does not agree to them and we stay seperated at my insistance, am I sinning since I will not reunite until she agrees to the conditions? :frowning:


#2

It is pretty obvious that your wife does not love you and putting conditions on a “possible” return is a total waste of your time. It hurts really deeply when you come to accept that your wife has chosen another path.As you have probably guessed I am in a similar situation to yourself…it will be one year on Wednesday since my wife deserted her marriage and it has been the worst year of my life but thank God and only through His help that I have retained my sanity. Deep down I still love her but IF she were to come to me looking for a reconciliation I would struggle to agree…there would be some serious discussion as to her motives because I think a serious element of true love has disappeared…that of trust.
I lay my future solely in the hands of God and the comforting arms of Our Blessed Mother…She keeps me right and guides me away from irrational thoughts…my greatest problem was anger…it nearly destroyed me…but thankfully my introduction to The Divine Mercy and it’s demand of seeing only the “good” in people has sanitised me. I’m still human and very much subject to failings but staying in a state of Sanctifying Grace, regular receiving of The Eucharist, reciting The Rosary and Divine Mercy devotion has saved me from being a piece of human wreckage.
I said earlier that reconciliation would be a struggle but you can never rule out what God might decide as long as we continue to pray for a solution. By doing this you are leaving the door open for a true reconciliation to take place.Praying earnestly for your wife’s conversion is a precondition and I believe part of God’s plan.
Take care my friend…carry this cross…I will remember you in my prayers
JESUS I TRUST IN YOU


#3

If she is willing to accept conditions to reunite, I would make that condition counseling based. You are dealing with someone who seems to put their own enjoyment above your happiness and none of those conditions listed address that.

You may want to look into Retrouvaille. This is a special retreat for those marriages on the edge.

I'll be praying for you!


#4

The only sin I see is hers.

Don’t let her walk all over you anymore.


#5

I’d whittle it down to - quit the job and let go of the apartment, get a new email address and new phone number, all computer use is in the main part of the house.


#6

It sounds like you still don’t trust her; if that is the case, don’t bother taking her back, you will only be setting yourself up for more of the same.


#7

Sounds reasonable…except it’s like putting a bandaid on a gun shot wound. Your wife’s indiscretions, for lack of a better word, need to be dealt with in counseling…why is she flirting with other men? Cheating? Not wearing her ring out in public? If she agrees to your conditions, it will only be on the surface, if she has done nothing else to change within herself…unless she has been seeing a counselor, praying, really trying to get to the heart of her problems, your conditions will be like resolving symptoms but not getting to the heart of the problem. You won’t gain a true marriage back through control and conditions…you want your wife to come back, whole, healthy, and willing to be a good wife of her own free accord…


#8

yeah, man. what they said.

look again at this:

I’d whittle it down to - quit the job and let go of the apartment, get a new email address and new phone number, all computer use is in the main part of the house.

these are very basic requests, outlined for OBVIOUS reasons. refusal to abide by these conditions would likewise be for OBVIOUS reasons.

a contrite woman would do all this and MORE.


#9

sinnegam,
Thanks for your blunt answer that my wife doesn’t love me. Her actions certainly don’t show it and that may be the case. I also appreciate the glimpse of hope you left in your response ,but I will not be blinded by false hope anymore. I will pray hard and seek our Lord in the sacraments and lean on our Holy Mother. I will also pray for you, my friend, that God will reach your wife’s heart so she will return in a manner that you will know is for real. If she does not return, I will be with you in spirit as we both carry our new crosses in life and try and use our suffering for God’s glory.


#10

I want to thank each of you for responding to my thread about my marriage situation. I have five kids that I care for now that my wife has left me, so I don’t have a lot of free time after work, but I want to respond to each of you over the next few days. Each one of you shared thoughts or ideas from your heart and head that I will reflect on and pray for God’s wisdom regarding how to best apply them to my situation.

Thanks so much. It meant a lot to me that you took the time to try and help me, each in your own way.

God Bless.:thumbsup:


#11

I think you’re waisting your time with this women. She obviously is not commited to your marriage. Cut your loses and move on. She’s not worth it!! No One deserves to be treated like that.


#12

[quote="mmarine, post:1, topic:185133"]
My wife has moved out. If she decides she wants to come back I feel I must require she meet certain conditions like :wearing her ring in public; making a verbal promise not to flirt with men, especially ones who have propositioned her at work; moving out of an apartment she sometimes stays in with a female co-worker when she works late, since her friend has a live-in boyfriend; put me back on her bank account as a joint holder; stop taking dance lessons with my son that include dancing with other men; introduce me to the man at work she had a three-week flirtacious exchange with or quit her job so she is not around him anymore.

You should know that besides the most recent flirtacious affair, my wife had an actual physcial affair first about 6 years ago. She told me about the affair and then went back to him again before she ended it, but then started a flirtacious affair with another man for a few weeks and then ended that and started a career in law enforcement. Then, within one year of being on the job, admitted to another flirtacious affair of three weeks that I mentioned above. This latest verbal affair was about four year ago, but she only told me about it about one year ago because she thought I was going to find out due to an investigation at her work regarding a related matter.

Do these conditions seem unreasonable or immoral, especially given my wife's aforementioned history? If:( my wife does not agree to them and we stay seperated at my insistance, am I sinning since I will not reunite until she agrees to the conditions? :(

[/quote]

Not balming you but I think you also need to examine or talk to her with WHY she is turning to other men for comfort either physical or emotional. Do you remember when you were dating her and your actions to her? Alot of times there is that "honeymoon" phase or courting phase, in which both parties are practically bending over backwards to make the other happy? Have you lacked in that area or has she (It is kinda obvious that she has on occassion) Women need that mental connection to their man. they need to feel that constant "feel good" emotion of being special and desired. Flirting provides that by giving her the sense that someone wants her for who she is, and that feeling can decrease in a marraige where you are both just comfortable with each other. I would suggest letting her know that you still desire her in both a sexual and mental aspect. that you desire her mind and that you desier her body, and she needs to do the same if she wants the relationship with you to be saved.

Personally I would say that the condition of her quiting her job is a bit harsh to return to you and will have the affect of driving her away. keep in mind that you cannot keep her under lock and key and that she will have contact with men outside the home, such as shopping or going to the bank, or out to eat. While she does work with men that she flirts with, that is not the underlining cause of the flirtation. And are all her actions truly flirting? I say this because as a Marine I am around men all the time (inded am the only female in the MOS at my unit) and I get alone very well with them. Sometimes my behavior may be seen by outsiders as "flirting" when it is aboslutely not and the guys know that, it is just my personality that comes across that way. I can no more change that then I can change who gave birth to me.

If she is working in law enforcement, she may haev a type A personality that includes being open and very forthcoming with the people that she is comfortable with. That should also be taken in to account. Think about joining the dance class with your son and wife rather than telling her to quit. This gives her time to do something with her son, and at the same time dance with you to retain that closeness. And do not do it just to watch her like a hawk, but rather because you want to experience the time with your wife in an activity that she enjoys.

Again not condoning her actions (personally i would leave after the first physical affair, but I am not forgiving for actions such as those) just trying to understand them. It sounds as if you want to forgive her and to trust her again and to make things work. While it may be hard, if you ever do get back together with her, you need to give the absolute appearance that you have and that you do trust her.

I was reminded of a story about a drug addict who quite cocaine. He worked hard to get his life back together and succeeded with his wifes help. He said that the only way that he could have kept succeeding was by knowing that he had his wife's trust to stay away from drugs, and she never let on that she didn't trust him. That encouraged him to remain in her trust by avoiding the temptation. It may work in your situation. that means not bringing up past infidelities once you get back together and she agrees to work with you. keep in mind that although you give the appearance of trust and I would say strive to actually have that trust, should she fault again, you should draw the line and remove her from your physical home.


#13

I am terribly sorry that your wife has treated you like this. You deserve better.

As for your conditions… I don’t think they are unreasonable but… I have to wonder about them. I hope I explain this in an appropriate manner.

By listing all those conditions, it appears to me you are trying to control the situation and are coming at it from the wrong angle. It appears you are hurt and you are hoping that by making a list, once everything is checked off, you will be happy again. The sad part is, you said ‘if she wants to come back’ I am wondering if she has told you she wants to come back or if it is your wishful thinking,

You have every reason to not turst her at this point and a lot of the things on your list would be helpfull in trusting again. However, there is the missing something you need that I think God alone could provide.

My advice is to spend less time on your list and more time seeking God’s help

I hope you understand my post was meant as an honest attempt to help. Not to hurt you

CM


#14

CM,

I am struggling with turning it all over to God because I feel I need to have a way of knowing whether she is being faithful in all ways, but I really can never know completely I guess. I appreciate you telling me my conditions are not unreasonable, but may be the wrong approach. I do want to control the situation now because I gave her so much freedom and she abused it by being unfaithful several times, but you are right when you say I need to seek God’s help more. I know God wants me to use my brains and instincts and learn from my experiences with my wife, but at the same time forgive. I can forgive, but I just don’t know if God wants me to forget and blindly trust her again. I think the answer is somewhere between blind trust and trust, but verify. I also think you are right about leaning more on God and less on my list.

To answer your question, my wife has not said she wants to come back. On the contrary, she has said a shortly after she left (about 2 months ago) that if I need to know now, then the answer is “it is over forever.”

Thanks so much.

God Bless:)


#15

RobnBobA,

I wrote you a long response, but I got logged-off and lost it all. You are right about many things, but I will respond more fully later. I must hit the rack.

Semper fi:thumbsup:


#16

"my wife has not said she wants to come back. On the contrary, she has said a shortly after she left (about 2 months ago) that if I need to know now, then the answer is “it is over forever.”

Boy, she sounds like a tough cookie and certainly not remorseful for causing you such pain.

It is unfortunate for sure, but it seems to me that once the trust is broken it is all too common for the the hurt spouse to try to control every aspect of reconciling.

Do you feel you would be able to work towards reconciling without checking on e-mails, phone calls, examining things said/not said, wondering who she is seeing when not with you, just wondering.

This would seem a life of torture constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Whatever you decide please ask God for direction and assistance especially since you have children to raise.


#17

I think we are talking about 2 different types of control. I do not mean ‘controlling your wife’, I mean more ‘controlling how your pain will be healed’. That is what needs to be handed over to God. It appears there is a real big chance your wife will not be coming back and that is what you need to bring to God

Agreed He wants you to forgive. However, I seriously doubt He expects you to forget. Some people twist ‘turning the other cheeck’ into being doormats and God loves you too much for that. Also, it is VERY possible to have forgiveness in your heart with out trusting someone again.

CM


#18

Dear OP,

My heart goes out to you. Yes, God does want you to forgive, even if sometimes your only sincere prayer can be, "Jesus, help me want to forgive" or "Jesus, I don't feel like I can forgive her/him, please enter into me and forgive through me". God can work with that. To the second part, No, God does not expect you just to forget. Pray for wisdom.

One thing I wanted to add, from having been there myself, is the toll reconciliation attempts can take on children. Sounds like you have 5 kids? God bless you. I have 4. My husband left us for another woman and for the next 2 years we tried to reconcile several times. That really hurt the children, giving hope to their happy-family-fantasies....only for me to discover yet again that the unfaithful spouse was still up to his old tricks, and dashing their hopes and adding to the confusion. That really hurt them and I wish so badly I had sheltered them from that, especially my oldest daughter. It messes with their mind to see mommy & daddy holding hands one month and then one parent kissing another person not too long after.

Another thing, PLEASE don't worry about doing "the wrong thing". This is a terribly difficult and painful path for you, and what InternetPoster recommends might not be what is needed in your situation. You are praying. You are offering up your suffering. You are taking care of your children and working. You need healing. Lay your heart at Christ's feet and let Him work on you to build you back up again. That will take time. Do your best, cover everything in prayer, and release your heart from anxiety about making mistakes. God is so much bigger and can work with anything.

A wife and mother walking away from a husband and 5 children is a heartbreak....it's incomprehensible but unfortunately it happens, huh. She may have times when she feels remorseful...well, feeling remorseful isn't the same as BEING sincerely repentant. If she is sincere if/when she ever asks to come back and live as a family, she will without hesitation be willing to prove it to you....consistently over time, and she will be patient and understanding with your feelings. HUMILITY is key if she ever wants to reconcile. I put myself in her place, and this might be an incorrect assessment, but I think if I had done that and REALIZED the complete destruction it had caused to my precious family, you wouldn't even have to ask me about my job. I'd hand in my notice immediately and do whatever it took to earn income away from the temptation of such deep sin. But that's just my personal opinion. And now I'm rambling...

Praying hard for you. God bless.


#19

fermat,

Thanks for your response.

Your suggestion of counseling is the same as a priest’s that I went and I will make it a condition.

We did go to counseling after her first affair, but we stopped after a few because the counseling didn’t really seem to want to resolve our problem, just keep us going to counseling by covering a little ground as possible each session. We ended up healing on our own, I thought, but about a year and a half later, she was had her 3-week flirtacious affair at her new job, but didn’t tell me for another two years. We went to Retrouvaille after this affair, but she threatened not to stay in the same room with me, so I said I not going, so then she went with me;however, when we were there, although we made good progress, she could not stop bringing up my past mistakes that I admitted to of fantasizing about other women occasionaly. I deeply regret my lustful thoughts, but she seems to think that they are no different than her affairs. I disagree on a purely practical level because I never fell in love with my fantasy women like my wife did with her lover, even to the point where she could not leave him after she said she did and then had to start other flirtacious affairs to ween herself off him, as she told me.

I will make sure I put counseling at the top of the list if she ever returns.

God Bless:)


#20

RobnBob,
I did not show enough affection in our marriage, which is why I forgave her for her physical affair, but when she returned to him for a while and then began a verbal affair before she finally ended it, I lost desire for her again and trust. I figured if I forgave her for the affair it would prove my love for her, but she used my forgiveness to keep the affair going longer. Then the snowball affect began, wherein, because I was angry over her repeated unfaithfulness, I didn’t want sex and I wasn’t affectioniate,which made her feel unwanted again, so she started flirting again because it seemed less unfaithful. She told the man that propositioned her that he should’nt talk “nasty” to her, but then she would call him and tell him he was attractive and that she would date him if they had met him before she was married.

So, you can see, she did flirt. She even told me she thought I would leave her over the flirting. If you think having her quit her job is harsh, ask yourself if you would be comfortable if your husband had done it to you. I don’t want to be controlling, but regret over one’s mistakes should make a person willing to perform restitution, and cutting off ties to the man she flirted with is the least she can do.

She is a Type-A person and I do need to allow ffor a more expressive wife around people, including men, but that does not include flirting or even talking with men that present themselves as immoral in anyway.

I would like to join the dance class with her, but she doesn’t want me around her, but it hurts me to see her use the time away to dance with other men, just because it is part of a class with my son.

Yes, I need to give the appearance of trust and pray that it will slowly return and I can not bring up past infidelities, although, she has never been able to not repeatedly bring up sins I have admitted to her of fantazing about other women and self-gratification on occassion.

I think I just have to be willing to take her back with no conditions and pray that God will convince her to be a faithful wife. Though most people, including a christian counselor and a priest, told me that women want a strong man and that being too nice, which my unconditional offer of reconcilation may be interpreted as, will only turn my wife off.

By they way, yesterday, my wife served me divorce papers.


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