I was thinking the other day of how difficult it is for so many people to stay committed in marriage. I applaud the people who stay married in a tough marriage, due to their faith. What I’m wondering is: if someone stays in a difficult marriage, especially with abuse issues or faithfulness issues - but even just those who fell out of love - is that person bound to be married to the person they don’t want to be married to when they reach heaven? What if someone married the wrong person and the right person is also married and they aren’t happy either? If we marry the wrong person on earth, is it possible for that to be corrected in heaven if we are faithful to the earthly commitment we made? Or is it better to be honest and correct that on earth? To leave a marriage in which a person must pretend to love another person without feeling that with their whole heart? We are obviously bound to many human mistakes in life, especially when we are young. If we realize later in life that a big decision we made when we were young was not made for the right reasons, does God give us any kind of latitude if we decide to change our marriage path when we are older? Is living with the feeling of lying in terms of the fact that you don’t love the person make a divorce or separation understandable in God’s eyes? I wonder.
The answer to your title question is no. See Matthew 22.
The rest of your post looks like you’re seeking reasons to divorce because one person isn’t happy. No. See Matthew 5 and other texts.
If we marry the wrong person on earth, is it possible for that to be corrected in heaven if we are faithful to the earthly commitment we made?
No. We will not marry in heaven, but pause to consider the joy of everyone in heaven. It won’t matter.
Or is it better to be honest and correct that on earth? To leave a marriage in which a person must pretend to love another person without feeling that with their whole heart?
It is not better to leave (barring a few extreme examples). We don’t always feel it with our whole hearts.
If we realize later in life that a big decision we made when we were young was not made for the right reasons, does God give us any kind of latitude if we decide to change our marriage path when we are older?
Annulling is possible for some. It means something about the union made the marriage was never a valid marriage. This decision would not be made for reasons of thinking you have fallen out of love.
Is living with the feeling of lying in terms of the fact that you don’t love the person make a divorce or separation understandable in God
Separation and divorce are quite different. No you are not living a lie as the commitment you made in your vows was sincere. Marriages can be repaired.
It sounds like you are going through something very trying, and I’m sorry to hear it. May God bless you and your marriage so that you scarecely remember a time it felt so bleak.
Marriage is an interesting sacrament. It’s the only one that individuals confer upon themselves-- the priest is a witness. Likewise, it’s not a sacrament of initiation (like Baptism, the Eucharist, or Confirmation) or a sacrament that confers a character (Baptism, Confirmation, Holy Orders). (Hint: the other two odd-ones-out are Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick, which are more like repair-your-soul sacraments.)
So, what do we hope to accomplish with marriage, in an ideal situation? It’s ultimately us-trying-to-help-each-other-get-to-heaven. We hope to have fidelity to each other-- not just physical faithfulness to each other, but on the spiritual level as well. We hope to have offspring-- children we can nurture and love and teach important stuff to. And the reason why sacramental marriage is indissoluble is because it prefigures the unity we experience in Heaven. Some might argue that it symbolizes Christ-the-Bridegroom and his Church.
If someone had the opportunity to marry for love at most points in history and in most cultures, that was a very rare luxury indeed! Love, or at least affection, could grow, but it generally wasn’t a prerequisite.
There are all sorts of dangers that can be talked about on a specific basis. Like, what to do if your husband physically assaults you. What to do if your husband is chronically unfaithful and bringing home all kinds of STDs. What to do if your husband sexually abuses your kids. What to do if your husband squanders all the household budget on drugs and alcohol and there’s no money left over for food and rent. And so on and so forth.
But those situations are best addressed specifically, rather than a general question of, “I was young and dumb and didn’t get married for the right reasons. What can I do about it, 20 years later?”
So without specific details, it’s easiest to recommend a path of prayer and sacrifice for a difficult and heart-wrenching situation, and perhaps read The Diary of Elisabeth Leseur in your spare time to see how someone else handled their own situation.
I agree with most of what you have been answered, but…
There’s such a thing as ‘survival mode’. If your spouse is physically abusing you, or your children, you have a responsibility to leave! Yes, it’s sad, but there’s no virtue in staying in harms was…you MUST get out.
Once you and your children, are in a safe place, you can start to see your spouse, on a limited basis, with view to repairing your marriage…it may work, or it may not. If you decide there’s no going back, you can apply for an annulment. The church may, or may not grant one.
No doubt, some will cite the examples of several saints. But, almost to a letter, these saints did not have the opportunities that women have today. You are never asked, by the church, to keep yourself open to abuse!
At the resurrection people will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven.
Marriage is a sacrament and an instrument to get people to heaven.
I think God understands and accepts these human issues more than many people are willing to give Him credit for.
My first reaction was, the title of this thread doesn’t quite match the first post and direction of the thread.
Having said that …
Anthony de Stefano’s "Travel Guide to Heaven" has a helpful analogy. He comments, It is possible to come away from Matthew 22:30 a little upset. After all, what if people like being married? Do our important relationships just get erased in Heaven? Do we stop caring? Far from it!
He compares marriage to a game of tennis. During the game, people use specific equipment, remain within certain boundaries, and play by specific rules. When the game is over, do the players forget that they know each other? Or do they have maybe a better relationship out in the wide world where the limitations of tennis no longer apply? Such is the freedom of Heaven for people who were once married. Their relationship changes but certainly is not lessened – even though some old things are eliminated.
(Assuming both of them actually get to Heaven, that is.)
He comments on something else. Marriage doesn’t just give believers the opportunity to populate the earth. By bringing up children in the faith, believers are given the incredible privilege to help populate Heaven.
Anyhow, that’s one answer to your thread title. I’m not sure it addresses whatever you were asking in the actual thread.
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