Hello, Everyone. This is my first post. I am desperate for answers.
I am a Christian woman who married the son of a minister almost 20 years ago. 10 years into our marriage, he confessed to numerous infidelities. From personal encounters to phone encounters to pornography. I was devastated, but determined to do whatever I could to save our marriage. We both thought that accountability was the answer. He stayed faithful for 6.5 years. It seemed all of that was behind us.
In 2015, I discovered pornography and confronted him. He confessed he had been living a double life for 9 months including everything except personal encounters. He said that he was a sex addict and began going to a 12 step program. I thought, ok, he is addicted but as long as he will stay in recovery, I can give him another chance. I gave an ultimatum that if he engaged in acting out and hid it, I would make him leave the home.
7 months ago, I walked in on him on the phone with a “900 number” if you will. Then followed a confession to everything but a personal encounter for the past 1.5 years. We are currently separated.
About 3 months into the separation, I noticed a real change in him. He seemed to really be trying to understand the trauma he had put me through. Seemed to really be thinking of me instead of himself first. Seemed to be maturing. We began dating. It was wonderful for a couple of months. Then I slowly started to see that he was less kind, less humble, less willing to take responsibility for his mistakes. I called off the dating because I no longer felt emotionally safe with him.
In the mean time, I have discovered the book, Codependent No More by Melody Beattie. I realized how codependent I was. I am working on changing. My main problems are seeking my value in his desire for me. I also obsess over him…is he cheating? Does he love me?, etc.
My question is, How can I, as a Christian woman, find my value in Jesus? I hurt so badly. And I have spent years trying to make my husband change so I can feel ok. I realize I can’t make him change and it is possible that he will never be a loving husband. I don’t believe I can divorce him. I feel stuck. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
PS we are both in individual counseling and we have 7 children, all still at home.