I am struggling so much with whether or not to file for divorce. I feel so lost and confused. My struggle is partly related to my faith and not wanting to go against God and his will but the other part of my struggle is also in regard to our 14 year old daughter as well as the whole how will I survive financially. My husband of almost 19 years decided he no longer wants to be married. This actually started about 3 years ago and my first instinct was to protect my daughter at all costs. The woman my husband initially became involved with was someone he had been invovled with before and she was someone I did not want to be involved with my daughter at all! For the past two years has been involved with a 2nd woman (a neighbor/“freind”). When he became involved with the 2nd woman I moved him out of the bedroom. I had already cut off any sexual relations with him when he became involved with the 1st woman. This situation has taken it’s toll on my daugther. As much as I wanted to protect her, I’m afraid I may have done more harm than good. She is now older and we told her a few months ago we were going to get divorced but I haven’t been able to take the steps towards filing. If my husband had his way we would stay as we are, he doing his own thing. He has said in 2 years he was planning to sign our house over to me, but I don’t think I can take 2 more years of him being involved with 2 women. The constant going out. I don’t feel it’s a healthy situation for my daughter. I am so torn and lost and pray every day for God to show me a sign. I do pray for my husband to come back to our marriage, but I honestly don’t know if I could do I. I know we are to forgive and I would try but I don’t think he will ever change his mind. I think at this point I need lots of prayers. I have a wonderful support system. My siblings and some very good friends are very supportive, which definitely helps.
I won't tell you what you should do. No one really can or should. I will just ask you, though, what example you're setting for your daughter. That isn't to say I think you're being immoral or "bad", but I think that your instinct to protect you daughter may be backfiring on you.
The message she's getting is that a woman is either a sexual plaything (your husband's two other women) or someone to take advantage of (you).
There are times to be strong for yourself and times to be strong for your children. Perhaps if you had no children you might be free to allow your situation to be in such flux, but I can't imagine that this is doing anything for your daughter's self-esteem or her own views of marriage. She has a right to expect her future husband to be faithful, full of faith, and a man of honor. Her father is obviously none of those things. While you obviously do not agree with the decisions he has made or his livestyle, how obvious is that to your daughter? You still live together and are married.
You probably already know what has to happen for your daughter's sake; perhaps your just coming here to get validation. The right choice is not always the easy one, or the one that leaves us most comfortable.
Your daughter is still an impressionable teenager. She needs to see a strong woman modeled and lived out before her. How much will you kick yourself in the future if she is with a man like your husband?
Thank you so much for your honesty and candor. You are so right and I do feel my wanting to protect my daughter has backfired. I have actually told her that as well. She had a very difficult time transitioning to high school in September. She went from a Catholic Elementary School to a Public High School. I knew almost immediately her anxiety was due to the situation at home. She no longer viewed change as a good thing. She really wanted to remain in Catholic School. I took her to a counselor which did help. She is finally at a point where she will say she likes school which I am grateful for.
I want her to be grow to be a strong woman and I would like to think that I was a good role model for her.
I think you are right, I probably was just looking for validation. I just need to get a backbone and do what I have known all along. I need to take a stand and file for divorce. There will never be a ‘right’ time to do it. The sooner I do it, the sooner we can all start to heal.