Feelings about my anulment


#1

Okay so I am doing it, the papers have been filed I dilled out my part, now it is up to my witnesses, and the tribunal. I htink my witnesses have sent their responses in, but they aren’t really talking to me about it. Only to say after they finished I did not sound like a very good person in the marriage. That really hurt, but I accepted it, because it is true I was not a great person. I did the best I could at the time, but I now know that I could have done better if I had just followed God a little more closely.

I am feeling a little sad about the impending result. Its strange, I am remarried. I know that my first marriage was not valid, I don’t want it to be confirmed as valid (that would really put my current husband and our child in a blunder) but I am still saddened by the end result. Anyone out theree experienced anything like this before?

Maybe it is the hormones from having another child (I have two from the first marriage, and just had one on the 13th of September the result of this marriage). Or maybe it is just the end to an era, I mean the guy is a jerk, and he is trying to keep my kids form me; but I am sad about it.

Any thoughts, or words of encouragement, or ways to stop feeling sad about this thing that is a good thing?:frowning:


#2

I went through the annullment process…I have empathy for you and the emotional rollercoaster you are probably feeling [if my own ‘ride’ is any indicator].

My husband and I had discussed speaking with a priest before we married [we both had been divorced]. But fear, lack of faith - trust - shame or pride, God knows…kept us from actually meeting with a priest. We married without getting a dispensation. I guess we were tinking it did not matter - except it did. We could not live outside the faith community - it was not healthy for our marriage…

I read the questions many times over several months before I could actually tackle them. It seemed like just reading them made me so tired and brought back so many [not good] memories…My husband was also struggling [he’d have to tell you his personal thoughts]

One raindy Sunday after returning home from Mass, we both sat down [at opposite ends of the dining room table] and answered all of the questions, and sent them off…

When I began to feel anxious shortly after, I made a determined effort to allow God to take control over the outcome…

I prepared myself for the answer by contemplating the various outcomes [my second husband was also seeking a decision - so there were many various outcomes including that one of us would recieve a positive answer and the other not!].

Then I prayed that God would guide the tribunal in their decisions, that the validity would be upheld [if in fact the marriages were valid] and that the marriages would only be annulled if there was no sacrament…I vowed to abide by the answer and submit my life to the decision.

He received his decision 4 months before my decision came. Our parish priest, blessed our marriage one week after I received my decision. At the ceremony [very short - immediately after the Saturday Vigil Mass - as he said we had waited long enough] he said [with the exception of our initial fears - that led us to initially marry] we were an example of patience and trust.

Had the decisions been different, it would have been hard. We would probably have lived our life together but not as ‘man and wife’. I am glad that God answered the prayer in the manner that he did but in the end, it was in his hands…

Don’t know if this helps you or not…but I will pray that God grants you and your family strengths and blessings to build you up and hearts that trust…:gopray2:


#3

I have made peace with all the poaable outcomes, my husband has also been married before, and he is too seeking a decision. Although neither of us is Catholic, I am trying convert. I made that decision after my husband had left for afghanistan, and the only real test we have had about doing Gods will and remining Chaste until further notice was the three weks R&R he spent home and the last week and a half we had just had a baby. Our stregth has not really been tested.

But I have already made the choice to follw Christ no matter what that means for my marriage, so far my husband is standing beside me in that choice.

I have just been feeling a little sad about the first marriage being proven to be invalid (assuming that it is), and I am not sure if this is just me, or if that is normal. Don’t get me wrong I completely feel it was invalid, all the circumstances involved, adn I totally want to be married to my husband, and I totally understand what that means now, and I know that is what I want; but yet I am still sad about the first one.

and yes your words did help


#4

It seems to me that being sad about failure is a normal response…and as you and I both know failed marriages do not occur in a vacuum…there is usually sin [it is that simple] and usually on both sides of the issue. People do not marry with no investment [even if that *investment is immature]. Emotions, self esteem and the heart ache caused to those innocents [children, family and friends] also caught in the storm eat at us…

We can’t erase the harm done…we can seek reconcilliation and repentance…take steps to be better people who make better choices…

It seems to me that you are doing just that…Keep the faith and pray…attend church…we are strengthened by the prayers and companionship of those who come together to praise Jesus…

When you study the Sacrament of reconcilliation you may learn about contrition [and perfect contrition and the various stages between]…remose is a feeling that can have many stages…

An example is a theft…[staying away from typical marriage issues]…As in:

I am sorry because I got caught stealing…

I am sorry I stole…

I am sorry I stole and I am sorry for the harm my theft caused the victim…

I am sorry I stole [even if the theft is not discovered] and the harm it caused the victims and the harm it did to my well being…

I am sorry I stole [even if the theft is not discovered] and the harm it caused the victims and the harm it did to my well being, and the scandal [potential scandal to friends, family, community] …

I am sorry I have offended God, who gives me blessing and forgiveness, who died for me tha I might have life. In disobedience I stole [even if the theft is not discovered] and I am sorry the harm it caused the victims and the harm it did to my well being, and the scandal [potential scandal to friends, family, community] …

I am sure that your deep sadness comes from the harm you caused your family as well as yourself but also comes from the seperation you feel from God. But Jesus welcomes the repentent …with open arms of unconditional love and a healing hand…


#5

I think YADA has given some excellent advise.

I just recently completed the annulment process and am still dealing with the emotional fallout. So many old emotions and memories dragged up. I wish I could have left them where they were.
I still am dealing with feelings of failure, and wishing things could have been different. I purposely did not want to know what the witnesses had to say. I felt that whatever else, they would tell the truth and that was all I could ask.
Overall though I believe that I and my ex will be better for this. Now I just have to convince my “Brain” of this.

Pray and let the Holy Spirit take care of the rest.

James


#6

this is kind of off the mark but could someone tell me how do you get an anulment. i mean exactly. i know what it is, but like what do you have to do like answer questions, talk to certain people at certain times. etc. people ask me all the time and i really dont know. i do know you have to have a very good reason to get one and and are hard to get. or is this no true either. I can say i really dont know anyone personally who has gotten one.


#7

Check with either your priest or deacon. They will put you in touch with someone who will walk you through the process.


#8

oh no thats okay i was just wondering in general but you might have answered my question though then it must be like a private thing and all of them must be different. I just have people ask me all the time because im catholic and i really dont know what to answer them… no big deal


#9

Rinnie,
here are some links that will help.

stcdio.org/annulment.htm

idotaketwo.com/christian_remarriage.html

americancatholic.org/messenger/sep1998/feature1.asp

James


#10

Rinnie, the annulment process is about examining in written format the whole failed relationship, from the families of origin to the point you met, your early dating, the preparation for marriage, the actual marriage, the beginning of the relationship falling apart, all the issues surrounding that, children, sexual history, drug or alcohol use…

That process, plus the testimony of witnesses is like a trial. It is submitted to the judges on the diocesan tribunal, who examine the evidence and decide if there was a real bond confected. They use many standards to examine the whole relationship. I liken it to the NTSB examining a plane crash to see why it didn’t complete the journey, finding where the fault was, and whether it was pilot error, sabotage or equipment failure.

Eventually, the couple is notified whether the original marriage was ever valid or not. If not, they are free to marry in the Church. It was as if they had never been sacramentally married.

It is a long and emotionally difficult process.

To those who are sorry they did it… don’t be. Yes, it stirs up all kinds of emotions. Stuff we may have ignored during the failure of the marriage. I liken it to a marriage dying is like a death. Some people kick the corpse into a shallow grave and move on quickly. But that body is still there and must be dealt with. Eventually, you must exhume it and dispose of it properly.

The same with the whole marriage failure. You cannot go through that without it leaving indelible scars. Sometimes we heal badly, and the annulment is like taking a broken bone that “healed” badly and rebreaking it and setting it properly. There is much self realization that goes on through this very thorough examination of who we are and what we did and how we got to where we are now.

That can be painful. But if done in the light of Christ’s teachings, it can be as merciful as Confession and Absolution.

And yes, it’s painful for the witnesses, for many reasons. Especially if they were family members who must face their own inaction in the face of disaster, or lack of looking out for a sibling or child’s welfare, or blindness to things, or their own role in raising someone who didn’t live by the light of Christ’s teachings. It requires soul searching for them. And they must be honest and sometimes they must say things that make them feel disloyal.

I would suggest you send a card to those who were your witnesses. Thank them for the difficult thing they did. Tell them their honesty is important to you in that the Truth will set you free, or lead you to live the rest of your life in the Truth. And that you don’t hold anything they said against them. That you have changed through all this and you ask their forgiveness in any way that you failed them as a friend.

That may lead to healing in the other relationships.

This is an important process. The self-examination you undergo can only lead you to a greater realization of the importance of prudence and fidelity to God in future relationships. My ex had NOTHING to do with the annulment process. He declined to participate. And he has learned nothing. Nothing. He’s going from one fiancee to another… one woman to another. He has learned nothing from a lifetime of relationship failures. He is scandalizing his children by his behavior.

I have become extremely cautious through it all. To the point I haven’t even dated. There is too much at stake. But the whole process was very healing, because in my instance, the Church was the only place that was interested in the truth of what happened. And it was the first time I was treated with any respect or compassion.

So mourn what was lost. You have had to deal with things you shovelled into a shallow grave. But that didn’t mean they weren’t buried away and festering. You are better off by having dealt with it sooner rather than later.

I knew someone who married someone who was divorced and he refused to go through the process. Within half a year she was complaining about his selfishness. Yep. There was someone who never faced and dealt with the things that doomed his first marriage. It’s only a matter of time before it crashes and burns a second time.


#11

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