When bad things happen

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by TexasSky, May 9, 2005.

  1. TexasSky

    TexasSky
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    Let me . share my history with you and then ask for prayer.

    First let me tell you, my marriage started off rocky, became totally wonderful, and then disaster, and I mean DISASTER struck. God got me through it all, but I would lie if I said there weren't moments when I accused God of abandoning me.

    This is long, and I apologize for that.

    My engagement was over a year long, so it wasn't like I rushed into marriage, and I was already a grown woman, not a teenager. I had been on my own, due to the death of my parents, for quite a while. He had not, so I knew when I married him, he had some maturity issues. I totally underestimated them though because I didn't really know his mother.

    During our engagement we'd both planned on the ministry and I was already doing children's ministry. He even helped me with it. After the marriage he announced he wasn't going to go into the ministry because his parents didn't think that was a profitable way to make a living. He resented my spending so much time at the church. He accused the church of taking advantage of me, taking me from my family, etc.

    I have been an active out-going person my whole life. I did mission trips, I did children's ministry, I did "bus-ministry," I did "community-center-ministry," I hung out with friends, I was active in politics for Christian causes, I loved to spend time with the elderly. He was jealous of everyone. He wasn't violent, wasn't even one who yelled, but he was jealous. If I went shopping with friends he wanted to know why I would rather be with them than with him. There wasn't a man in my life who he didn't tell me, "He wants you, be careful around him. I can tell he wants you." Wanting to be a good Christian wife, I took the path of "withdrawing" from activities to please my spouse, but that created resentment on my part.

    Then I found he lied to me about finances. I had excellent credit when we married, he had never had credit. He started using my cards, and running them up. I complained about the cost and thought it was solved. Instead, he started buying things at Dillards, on my credit card, hiding the bill, putting the item in a Wal-Mart bag and telling me he paid $10 for it, when in fact it cost $50, then he would hide the Dillards bill from me. I learned this was something his mother did that his family thought was cute. I had a fit. I won't even pretend I responded like a Christian wife. I had a hysterical fit when I found out. It wasn't the money, it was the deception. His parents had more say in events about my life than I did, from where we would live to what we would drive, to where my husband would work. It was clear
    that they viewed spouses as intruders with no say, rather than their son's family. I seriously considered divorce then, but felt I didn't have biblical grounds, so I begged God to give me answers and help guide me.

    Well, I spent those first few years praying, crying and begging God to help me, and he did.
    Slowly my husband grew up and became the man I thought I was marrying. He began working with me in the church again, he quit lieing to me about finances, and he stopped his out-of-control spending. We paid off every card. He started establishing rules with his family, politely telling them that certain issues were none of their business.

    When we decided to have children his mother told him she disapproved and said if he had a child she wouldn't speak to him. He told her she was over stepping her place, and that this was a choice for a husband, wife and God to make, and that he hoped she would reconsider when the child arrived, but that he wasn't going to let her manipulate his life.

    This took so many years of prayer and patience folks. I know I wasn't the best wife either. I am a horrible housekeeper, and like any wife I can nag. I am terrible about savings too. While I stay within my budget, I tend to be a woman who goes, "Okay, bills are paid, we have $100 extra, lets do something fun," instead of saving the $100 like I should. So I don't mean to even try to imply I was a perfect. I really did try though.

    By the time the kids came the bad was over, and my marriage was what I had always hoped a marriage would be. He was my partner, my friend, a good father. He had grown up. His mother was still much very intrusive in our life, but he was not responding to her like a little boy anymore. He was putting his own family first. When out kids came to us, upset about the divorce of a friend of theirs, asking us if it could ever happen to us, we assured them it wouldn't - not only because we don't believe in it, but because we were so happy together. We used to use those bad first years in talks to others about how you stick it out and give it to God when marriage seems tough, because the end result was soooo wonderful. People would point to us as an example of a good marriage, because we really HAD a good marriage.

    Then - when my daughter was 12 and her brother was 6, a drunk driver ran into my husband (and the kids). My husband suffered a traumatic head injury that we missed. A few days after the accident I noticed some changes in him - limps, slurred speech, short temper - but he assured me it was just the stress of it all. According to everyone from the paramedics and police officers to the automobile manufacturer, there was no way any of the three should be alive, must less have such apparently minor injuries, but the car was totalled, and there were medical bills. We just missed the head injury. That's all there is to it.

    About a month after the accident my husband's secretary called me, asking me if I would do his client charts for him. She was retiring, and she didn't want him to lose his job. I asked her why in the world she would think that my doing his charts would keep him from losing his job, and she told me, "Hon, he can't write an english sentence. Something has happened." So I rushed him to the doctor against his will.

    They told me he had a subdural hematoma, a frontal lobe injury, his serotonin levels were off, and they suggested specialists.

    So off we went to them. The specialists called me aside and said, "Is he raging? Is he angry at you?" I said, "No. He's been wonderful, why? Did he indicate anger at me in your interview?"

    They told me, "No, but with this kind of injury it is common. Serotonin allows us to be happy, it regulates emotional control. You are going to be in for a rough time if we don't artificially balance this out. He'll be impulsive. He may blame you for the accident even though you weren't with him when it happened, he may go through personality changes."

    We laughed at them. It was so.. NOT .. us. We'd worked through so much, and had such a good marriage for so long now, that what they said was totally laughable.

    We took the meds they offered, and went on about our business. Then one day I got this hysterical phone call from him, accusing me of an affair with a young man that I was doing Christian counseling with. (When I say young man folks, I'm talking about a kid just a few years older than my daughter.) I asked him why he in the world he thought this, and he threw a letter at me that the person had signed off with, "Love, Dave." Not, "I love you." I assured him I wasn't having an affair, reminded him that he was with me any time I even spoke to Dave, reminded him Dave was happily engaged, reminded him I just am NOT that kind of person.

    A few days went by, and I got another call, this time accusing me of an affair with a man I worked with. The man is gay, and my husband knows this. So, I reminded him of this fact, and asked him why he was accusing me. He threw a credit card receipt at me. The man in question had been diagnosed with malignant skin cancer. My office had decided to send flowers to him at the hospital, and asked me to put it on my credit card and let the staff reimburse me. He'd discovered the receipt for flowers, and turned it into a love affair in his mind. I reminded him that he was WITH me when I purchased the flowers.

    Then my son came to me, asking me if I was scared of the lady that talked to Daddy at night. I had no idea what my son was talking about. He told me that his father told him a woman dressed all in black "appeared" to him at night, and "told him about Mama." My son said the lady didn't like Mama much. Mama didn't like the lady much either, folks.

    By now, I was scared. I started getting calls from his office, asking me why he wasn't at work. I would try to find him and couldn't. When I did find him at home later, and asked him where he was he would claim he had been at work.

    He started drinking. He started smoking. He started raging at our kids, especially our son, so much so that my son crawled into my lap and asked me why Daddy didn't love him anymore.

    It came to a head when he kidnapped our children, and told people he had filed for divorce. I was frantic. I was almost suicidal. He'd arranged for his parents to take the kids out of town, and vanished himself. The next day he called me asking if he could come home. I said yes. The kids weren't with him though. It took me another week to track down his mother and get my kids back.

    I got him back to a doctor. They told me he was allergic to a certain medication and it was making his skitzophrenic. They told me to give them time to fix it. They assured me I wasn't in danger. I wasn't so sure. He was talking to me know about his friend showing up telling him that God wanted him to go to heaven, but saying God wanted him to take a step of faith by killing himself and me. I talked about committment to a hospital, the doctors told me the mental health wards were full. I arranged for the kids to "spend the night" with Christian friends, relatives, etc. At least if anything happened, it was only me in danger.

    Then it seemed like we had a miracle. They got the meds changed, leveled out, and suddenly the man he was just prior to the accident was back. We were a family again, and I was thanking God that I'd stuck it out. That lasted about a year. Then his doctor retired. The new doctor wanted to play with his meds. I begged them not to. I cried. I was ignored.

    Just a few months after that, the nightmare life began again. He was accusing everyone I knew of wanting to have an affair, or of having an affair with me. He was drinking. He was raging. He was vanishing for long, long hours. I learned that he had cleared out his retirement, that he had run all the credit cards to the limit, that he'd taken out loans I knew nothing about, that he had NOT paid the mortgage. He started talking about a woman he worked with - all the time. He changed the way he dressed, and told me it was because she liked the new way more. He talked about what her house looked like. I knew what was going on, but he was sick.

    I prayed and cried. Christians altered between telling me to get out on biblical grounds, to telling me to hang in there. I went to him, told him that I knew adultry was a sin, but that if God can forgive out of love, spouses with children whose lives will be devastated by it can to. I was telling him I would forgive him. He told people I confessed to adultry.

    And when I say he told people - I mean, he went to church and told our Sunday School I was having an affair, he told our Pastor, he told my children, he told his parents, he called friends of mine since childhood, made a lunch date with my aunt.

    Fortunately, MOST of these people reacted by calling me going, "Hon, is he off his medications?"

    I kept clinging to "in sickness and in health." They'd "made him well once," maybe they could again. I prayed and prayed.

    The other woman became more and more an issue. She is spanish. We aren't. He began speaking in spanish at home, listening to Tex-Mex music, and continued to talk about her all the time. If work went well, he was semi-decent at home. If work went badly, he would rage at home. Every other day he'd threatenen to leave and threaten to file for divorce. He stopped wearing his wedding ring.

    One day my daughter came to me and asked me to please divorce him. The very child who had once made us promise never to divorce.

    I went back to the new doctor, and threatened legal action. I'd asked them not to change the meds, and my life was a nightmare because they had ignored me.

    They made another change in his medications and we thought things were fine again. Things settled down on the surface. We had several really good weeks, we had a great Easter, and then I got a call from my daughter's counselor at school. By now she was in high school.

    Her father had apparently filed for divorce and not said a word to anyone. He had gone to work that day as if nothing at all was wrong, huggign and kissing us all, saying he loved us, talking about meeting me for lunch. A friend saw the divorce announcement in the public announcements part of the paper and shown it to my daughter. She had gotten hysterical. My husband showed up at my office saying, "Look, I was just upset that day. Its nothing really."

    I told him that I couldn't handle it anymore. He couldn't come home until he had marriage counseling and medical help.

    At counseling he would never tell the counselors whether he wanted to "save the marriage" or "work on making divorce easy." So I cancelled the counseling. He got hysterical, begged me not to leave him. I went back to counseling. He told a counselor he hated our son because he was too goody-goody like his mother. The counselor, a Christian minister, said, "I've never told anyone this before, but you need to get out of this."

    I finally agreed. Hired my own attorney to ensure my children would be protected from this insanity.

    He had NEVER admitted to an affair.

    A few weeks after the divorce was final he came to me, asking me to help him. At his office a Christian had discovered the affair and confronted the lover, who was a member of HER church. The lover, panicking, had denied it all, and claimed my ex was sexually harrassing her. The Christian coworker had gone to the office manager. My ex was afraid he'd be fired and that his father would find out about his affair. He wanted me to help him hide the affair from his father. His father had loved me dearly until the divorce. My ex's false accusations against me had almost destroyed my father-in-law because he'd loved me so much.

    I thanked him for finally admitting I wasn't losing my mind, told him that the best thing to do in regards to his father was confess and ask forgiveness, but that knowing he wouldn't do that, he should get another job. He did.

    For a long time he didn't speak to the other woman. He got on medications. He practically dated me. I changed churches because it was so hard to be in the church we'd had so much love in every Sunday without him. He changed to the same church. I was okay with that. My son needs to see that fathers pray, and I kept sooo much of this from the kids. Or thought I did. My ex became a much better father after our divorce than during our marriage. He knows what he said about our son and has tried to make it up to them. He feels guilty about destroying our home, and spends more time doing family things. I make him welcome at family times, as does my sister's family and my aunt. So at Christmas and Thanksgiving our kids don't have to choose parents.

    Now, my daughter is doing mission work while working on a degree in missions. She called me, sobbing. She's furious. Her father is dating the woman he had an affair with, and she doesn't know what to do with that anger. Apparently she was with her Dad, going through his cell phone, and found the woman's name. She recognized it, and told her father that she wasn't stupid, that she'd heard him during his less lucid times, heard what he'd said to me, and told him that she and her brother had known about his affair for years. She said she thought he'd ended it, and demanded an explanation for why it was still going on. He told her, "It isn't like you think. We don't date. I just take her to eat and a movie." My son, hearing his sister, said, "Is that who he meant when he said he had a date the other night?" I didn't know what to say.

    He came to the house the other day and mentioned her name. I said, "I thought you ended that right after the divorce." He said, "Oh, well, she apologized to me. Said she didn't tell Theresa to say that. She just paniced because she didn't want anyone to know about us." I said, "Oh."

    The thing is - he teaches Sunday School, and the church is always telling me what an amazing Christian he is.

    Folks - I'm furious. I'm mad, and I don't know if I'm mad at him, or at God, or the church for not seeing through it.

    I don't know what to do with the anger.

    I'm hurt.

    And I need your prayers over this, because .. honestly.. I feel like a rebellious child. I'm TIRED of being nice, I'm TIRED of trying to go, "The kids have a right to a good relationship with their father, so treat him nicely when he is around." I am tired of hearing people tell me how good a Sunday School teacher he is, but I don't want to be a bitter ex-wife who seems to be spreading stories about her ex.

    Besides, he NEEDS to be in a church home, and if I tell them all the truth - I don't know if he'll ever go near God's house again.

    I just... need help with this anger.

    Please pray for me.
     
  2. Gold Dragon

    Gold Dragon
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    Thanks for your honest and difficult sharing Texas Sky. I will pray for you and your family.
     
  3. dianetavegia

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    TexasSky, I'd seriously suggest YOU find a small church near your home and move your letter. Even if this means heading down to the Salvation Army to help at their meetings or some mission team that goes into Nursing Homes to hold services! You can go back into the ministry while escaping his 'hold' over your family.

    Let the current church 'test the spirits' and find out on their own about your husband.

    Before joining, talk to the pastor of the NEW church and tell him what you've told us in case your ex husband shows up wanting to join there. You should be able to worship without his interference.

    I can only imagine your anger but I did work a number of years in a mental hospital and know exactly the good husband, bad husband type swings you're talking about. I also saw what medication changes could do to people. Those who've never seen it, would not even believe us.

    Praying for you, my sister in Christ!
    Diane
     
  4. TexasSky

    TexasSky
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    Thank you, Diane,

    After I wrote the first letter, I had a long talk with God, and then another with my Pastor. I didn't tell him my ex is dating the other woman, but I shared almost everything else with him.

    He told me that my ex had not been given a Sunday Class for the upcoming year. Then there is the fact that the last few Sundays I haven't seen my ex show up.

    I actually love the church where I am, and I am working at getting back into my ministry via baby-steps. I do okay until I hear people praising the ex, but God is opening eyes around me.

    A lot of them are opened because of my daughter. Her testimony tends to lay things on the line, and she talks about some of this in her testimony, and how God used this disaster in her life to draw her even closer to him.

    Please do keep praying for us all though.
     

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