One day while I was loading up the minivan I glanced across the street and noticed one of my friends from a few years back. She was rummaging through her car too, so I hollered at her and said hello. She looked up at me and smiled. I asked how she and her husband were doing and what she had been up to. Almost immediately the circles around her eyes became red, as she said they had separated. Turns out they had both made some mistakes. Had some small talk before she walked back into the house she was staying.
I was deeply saddened by her story because they were such a great couple when I had known them. This forced me to think about the different reasons why people might get separated. I invite you to participate in this refection process with me.
Today is the day you realize that life is not always perfect, because today I am going to give you 5 reasons why divorce is okay.
Physical abuse is grounds for divorce (be it man or woman).
Some might say that this one is a no brainer, but in truth it is not. People are willing to look past violence and allow harmful relationships to continue. The truth is, there are many different layers that keep this topic from being simple that I am not qualified to speak on. If you ever find yourself in a situation where someone is physically causing you harm, you need to get as far away from that person as physically possible. This point is even more urgent if you have children in the mix.
When you get married to someone, you are sworn to each other and bound for the rest of your lives. When you are in a marriage relationship and one of you purposefully deceives the other and decides to sleep with another, then that is grounds for divorce. Sleeping with someone outside of your marriage vows breaks a level of trust and a promise that your body is your soulmate’s. In sleeping with another you have violated that sacred bond between you and your lover.
3. Verbal Violence
This is just as bad as physical violence because it causes just as much psychological trauma. If you are being belittled and have sought support from a councilor(s), or simply have done all that you can to make the relationship work but the person is still belittling you, then you need to get a divorce. You need to be in an environment where you are loved, and one where you can love back. When you get married you make a promise to love, honor, and respect the other person and vise-verse. If that is broken then you need to get out.
4. Broken Trust
This is possibly the most ambiguous to deal with because it resides in violence, adultery, and verbal violence, but what I am trying to describe here is betrayal. When you get married you place your trust in another person, not just like you would a job or some sort of long-term friendship/relationship, or even with your family. We are talking about all of your trust. If someone breaks it just once—or especially multiple times—you need to leave that person. The issues surrounding this point can be ambiguous, but if you could imagine someone taking advantage of your vulnerability when you depend upon that person with your life, then you might get a glimpse of what I am trying to say. In some ways a parent child relationship displays the level of trust that needs to be recognized in a marriage relationship.
5. Child Endangerment
If a child is ever in danger from your spouse then your responsibility is to protect that child at all cost. I cannot emphasize this enough. Children are the most vulnerable and require the most protection possible. There are instances where people will choose their spouse over their children. Don’t be that person! You may have made a bond with that love of your life; however, when you have a child, you make a bond with God to protect that child till he/she is able to take care of his/herself. Never give up on or abandon your children. If your spouse harms your child or threatens your child, take that child to safety and drop that spouse like a bad habit.
Marriage is about trust, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, and love. Always seek to foster those things and cling to Jesus together when times get tough.