Hello, my friends! Coach LeAnne here! I am so honored to share space here again this month as we delve into the transformative power of freedom. Freedom to be all God created us to be. In a world where we often find ourselves entangled in various forms of bondage, both externally and internally, the concept of freedom becomes a beacon of hope. Whether it's breaking free from toxic relationships, overcoming personal limitations, or liberating our minds from self-imposed limitations, we believe that true freedom is attainable. Join us as we explore the journey towards freedom, discovering the strength within, and embracing a life centered in Jesus Christ- He is the author and perfecter of our lives.
Question: I thank God for you, your ministry, and all those in your organization, who serve and help us, the oppressed and weak! Since I was introduced to your materials about 5 years ago, my life of confusion and suffering has turned around to head toward the one of liberation, healing, and strength. I'm so thankful to God for you all! I've been doing my best to stay well in this marriage of 20 years with my emotionally destructive husband. It's been a difficult, disappointing, and destructive relationship. I homeschool 4 children of ours, the oldest being 17 and the youngest 10.
Frankly speaking, none of us like him, and all of us are having a very hard time to persevere in loving him due to his narcissistic personality and his repeated choices of living in denial despite our communications and confrontations we have been having with him. Some time ago, I began to set clear boundaries and stopped compromising in taking care of my emotional and mental well-being by refusing to have intimacy with him. I also stopped allowing him to dictate our lives by controlling our decisions about which church or functions to attend, etc. As expected, he has not been pleased by that and attempts to manipulate us back into cultivating “relationships” with him; yet he continues to fail in keeping his promises, recovering trust, and repenting of his wrongs sincerely.
At this point, I simply don't feel like I can keep trying anymore. The toxicity my children and I endure as long as he is involved in our daily life is getting unbearable, and it's exhausting to live this way. Yet, I somehow hesitate to initiate bringing our marital issue to a legal level. I've been praying and considering our legal separation, but it, for some reason, feels wrong for me to make that call. I have requested multiple times to let us have mediators since our conversations keep going parallel, not producing enough positive changes to bring solutions to our harmful problems. He just rejects the idea. At the end, he puts the blame on my unwillingness to work with him and my influence on our children, creating further gaps between him and them. I know it's blame-shifting and gaslighting tactics! He seems to be incapable of seeing his errors and shortcomings whatsoever.
Whether it's fear of the unknown future and possible retaliation from my husband, or lack of preparedness (I haven't been able to find a way of making consistent income), courage, or faith, I desire to face them with Jesus and do what I'm supposed to do to obtain holistic health for me and our children. Meanwhile, I haven't been able to shake off this feeling of uncertainty and even a little bit of guilt-regarding proceeding to file a legal separation while he keeps expressing his desire to make our marriage work.
Besides prayers and getting strengthened through your equipping materials, what do you think I should do to move forward? Also, which Bible verse(s) would you share with me to stand on in order to make a decision with confidence that is aligned with God's will and heart for us in a situation like this? Thank you in advance for considering answering my question.
Praying for you and those around you. I truly am grateful for all that you do.
Dear Beloved Reader,
I want to express our deep gratitude for your kind words and the impact our materials have had on your life. It is a blessing to hear that you have found liberation, healing, and strength through your journey. We understand the challenges you face in your difficult and destructive marriage, and we want to offer support, a bit of guidance, and prayer as you step into your unique forward.
Dear sister, you are not alone in this journey. God's heart is for your well-being, healing, and restoration. Many others have faced similar challenges and have found healing and restoration. By sharing your story, seeking support, and embracing the resources available to you, you are taking important steps toward a healthier and more fulfilling life.
It's important to acknowledge that your husband's attempts to regain control and manipulate you are likely to intensify when faced with your new boundaries. This is a common pattern in toxic relationships. Remember, you are not responsible for his reactions or choices. You have the right to protect yourself and your children from the harm caused by ongoing toxicity.
When in a situation where there is ongoing emotional or physical danger, it's crucial to prioritize your safety and the safety of your children. Please develop a safety plan that outlines steps to take in case of an emergency. Reach out to local organizations or hotlines specializing in domestic violence for guidance and support in creating a comprehensive safety plan. The National Center for Domestic Violence Hotline can be reached at 1-800-799-7233. There are advocates available 24/7 and will help you create a safety plan that will support you and your children.
Regarding the decision to pursue a legal separation, it's natural to feel uncertain and experience a sense of guilt. However, remember that God desires holistic health and freedom for you and your children. Seeking legal counsel, and knowing your rights, responsibilities, and the risks of a legal separation should that option be a viable one in your state. This may be the only space you can create some financial safety for your future. Please give yourself permission to get clarity in this area. Family money can be hidden, misspent, or depleted if you do not take action here.
Connecting with others who have experienced similar challenges can provide a sense of validation and understanding. Learning to set healthy boundaries, walking the road to clarity, and letting go of guilt as you gain your God-given strength, is best done in community.
Moving forward, mediation can be a valuable tool in facilitating healthy communication and working toward a resolution. Unfortunately, your husband is unwilling to participate in this process. From what you've said, your husband refuses mediation because he still wants to be in control. This informs you that despite his words stating that he wants the marriage to work, it's still on his terms and his way. He's not open to learning or being teachable. He's not open to hearing from you, let alone a mediator. So where do you go from here?
Lean into your faith and draw strength from your relationship with God. Engage in spiritual practices such as prayer, reading Scripture, and seeking guidance from trusted spiritual mentors. Allow God's Word to speak into your situation and guide your decision-making process. Remember, God is the ultimate healer and restorer, and He will walk alongside you every step of the way.
While making decisions aligned with God's will, I encourage you to consider the following Bible verses:
1. Psalm 34:17-18: “The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
This verse reminds us that God is near to those who are hurting and will deliver them from their troubles.
2. Isaiah 41:10: “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
This verse assures us that God is with us, providing strength and support as we navigate challenging situations.
3. Psalm 32:8 The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. He will advise you and watch over you.”
Trusting in God's guidance and submitting to His will can bring clarity and direction in uncertain times.
You have taken some next right steps and God has shown you that your husband's heart remains hard. He is or he continues to be unwilling to learn, to listen, or to repent. What does that tell you? How does that information help you make your next steps forward in alignment with what God is showing you?
In situations like yours, where emotional destruction and narcissistic behavior persist, it is crucial to prioritize your emotional and mental well-being, as well as the well-being of your children. Setting clear boundaries and refusing to compromise on your personal health is a courageous step towards establishing a healthier relationship dynamic. Your heavenly father has given you a good mind and a heart to do his will. It is his will that you learn to listen to Him above all other voices, even your husband's voice. Learning to do that and taking godly care of your body, mind and spirit may feel wrong, your spouse may tell you it's wrong, but it is good stewardship of you and that can bring you peace.
Shalom and heartfelt blessings to you!
What advice would you give to someone who is struggling in a destructive relationship but hesitates to take steps toward change?
Ask Your Question
Have a blog question you'd like to submit?
Morning friend, We spent the weekend in Pinetop, our summer cabin home. It was a beautiful weekend. Blue sunny skies. Cool breezes. But being away all winter does tell a story. The mice found refuge in our cabin on cold winter days and nights. I went to put on my slippers and found mouse droppings…
Happy New Year’s Eve What resolutions are you making this year? Do you typically keep them? I dread heading to the gym on Tuesday because it will be crowded with all of us who made 2013 the year to lose weight. Research shows however, that most people fail to keep their New Year’s resolutions often…
Morning friends, I recently became aware of a tragic story that I want you to know about. Karen and Jordan Root were missionaries when she discovered that her husband was viewing child pornography. She was devastated, yet took the appropriate action, disclosed it to her mission board and church, where they promptly brought them home…