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My wife has left me because she feels guilty over first divorce..

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My wife was sexually abused and controlled by her husband throughout their 14 year marriage. She had three sons with her husband throughout their marriage. We met as her marriage was ending, in fact, she contacted me, as I had no idea who she even was. I wasn't the reason her marriage ended. I too was divorced and had been for 8 years when we met. I also had two sons of my own from my prior marriage who lived with me. We became a couple and married 1 1/2 years after her divorce was final. Her ex-husband followed her to the city we live in and has repeatedly blasted her with biblical references about the ills of divorce, blended families and the sins of her ways. I have treated my wife with so much respect and love, as she has also done with me. Her children also love me as I do them and the same goes for my children, even though one is now in college and has not been a part of the household. So what happened?? In early July, she told me she has to deal with issues in her own mind that she has never dealt with and began to see a christian counseling organization that her ex-husband had previously gone to. She told me it was to help our marriage be stronger. A week later, she told me that she was confused as to the direction God wanted her life to go, whether it be with me, or whether it be with her ex-husband.. She did tell me that we weren't breaking up, just that she was confused. Then the anger portion of her behavior began and she began attacking me at will and my youngest son at every chance. Within another week, she started telling me that my son and I needed to find a new place to live... which finally culminated with us being forced out of the home in early August... She told me she needed space and that this was not the end of our relationship.. One week later I was served with divorce papers.. I have tried patience, sought options for joint-counseling, tried everything I could to help us. We talk often, she calls me multiple times a day, we have lunch together and I am trying very hard to understand what she is going through. She now tells me that she is racked by tremendous guilt because she put her kids in a blended family and that she needs to move them away from that. She also doesn't love her ex-husband, but says she is willing to go back to him to keep the family whole. I just don't understand, I treat her and my step-sons like gold, I provide well for them, and she also loves my sons. I am hurting so terribly because I would lay my life out on the line for her, but it appears she has been brainwashed somewhere along the line. Blended families with love do work, -- we worked well together --.. On a side-note, she has been recommended for a hysterectomy (sp?) by her doctor and has a few other female issues that she is largely ignoring.. Could it be a factor in her mental state?? Has anyone else dealt with issues like this?? Please help me to understand... I love my wife so much even though I have been hurt so badly.. How can I help her???

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It sounds to me like she continues to allow her ex-husband to control her. I don't think she was healed from her relationship with him before you two married. So now things are unraveling.


I wish I had more hope for you regarding this relationship, but by what you are describing I do not see this one working out. She needs to deal with her first marriage once and for all. Until she does, you are going to be stuck in limbo. You will not be able to "make" her understand. She has to walk down this road herself and make a decision once and for all which way she is going to go.


For now, I recommend you give her space and stop contacting her for awhile. Let her miss you and make up her mind. Whatever the choice, know that you did the best you can. There are some things you will just not be able to fix.

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I think there is another aspect here that you need to consider - your sons. They need some stability in their lives and that is not happening at the moment. Their stepmom and her kids are in and out of their lives and they also lost their home when you had to move out. I think your first responsibility at the moment is them and their needs. It is important that they do not become a side issue while you concentrate on what is happening in your marriage. This is particularly true for your youngest son if she was picking on him - he may be blaming himself for what happened.

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Blended family? What does that mean, exactly? Step-brothers and sister? If so, then pardon me for stating this, but that is quite a silly statement for he or her ex, to make.


I think the other posters are correct in that her husband still controls her. Maybe it is like "battered wife syndrome" or any of the other psychological reasons a "captive" would side with the "captor".


I think you have to look out for your sons, as well. You can still be there for her, but keep them out of the mess. I am not sure how, as I know they probably want to see her and her kids and might not get the whole thing.


I am sorry that this is happening to you, but keep coming in here and posting.

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I agree with the others. It sounds like her husband is still influencing her decisions. It's hard enough to make a marriage work without the entanglements of the ex always getting in the way. I agree with what Avman said, you should just give her space, and see if she'll figure this out for herself. Really that's the only way a person can figure things out anyway. Meanwhile you've got your own kids to worry about, and they don't need to be exposed to extra drama.

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Yes, I understand all that each of you are saying and appreciate greatly the responses. I really don't understand the references by her about the blended family being such a mistake. My 2 year anniversary is on this coming Monday. How is this possible when she was so happy just 2 months ago... I must be clear on the verbal attacks which she made about my son. They were never directly to him. She attacked him through me. My son is 17 years old, very quiet, extremely polite, involved in athletics, is an honor-roll student and has never had so much as a traffic ticket. I imagine her guilt over what she perceives to be the evils of blended families led her to find any justification to find an alternative justification... I'm not sure. I do know that I do love my wife, and am committed to helping her through whatever is troubling her. It is just extremely difficult when I ask if she will go to joint counseling or a weekend marriage retreat to try and get all issues we both may have out on the table... then get the response that "I never went with my first husband", "so why wold I go with you?".. I've tried to keep my distance, but she calls me daily and nightly to see what is going on.. She has left voice mail on my son's cell-phone letting him know "how much she misses him and wanting him to stop by the house...".. So much confusion.. Is this a sign of a mental crisis?? It hurts to see her go through this.. I made a vow for better or worse.. How can I dishonor that??

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She may need intensive counseling on her own. Therapy not medication. She needs to learn how to believe in herself. having been through all that abuse is still affecting her and her ex is still abusing her to this day. Good Luck to you.


Just keep being there for her and in the end if you lose you know you did all that you could do. Its sad that this is going on, she does indeed sound like she is in the middle of a mental crisis, one caused by years of abuse and her inability to stand up and put a stop to it once and for all.

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