My Husband Left Me. Should I Take Him Back?

BY: - 2 May '17 | Marriage

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Dear Dr. Buckingham,

I have a complex question for you, but you might have a simple answer. My husband walked out on me after 15 years of marriage. We knew our relationship was in trouble and we sought counseling both inside and outside the church. We are a Christian family and are grounded in our beliefs. I did not believe in divorce, but filed for divorce after my husband abandoned our two small kids and me.

I didn’t let the divorce make me bitter and encouraged my husband to have a relationship with our kids. The struggle was hard initially, but after a year I started to grow closer to Christ and learned to accept being a single mother.  I cried in secrecy and worshipped in the open.

Right when I found myself in a good place and at peace, my ex husband returned and asked to reconcile. I am at a loss for words and feelings. I love him, but not in the dedicated way that I once did.  He is in the church and has grown closer to the Lord. He says that he has changed, but I am not sure what to do. Should I work toward reconciliation after being abandoned by my husband?

I want to do what pleases Christ not only for me but also for my family.

Kind regards,

Guarding My Heart

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Dear Guarding My Heart,

Your question is definitely complex and unfortunately I do not have a simple answer. However, I would encourage you to follow your heart. I say this because you should not try to fool yourself to mentally accept what your heart cannot handle.

Your decision has to be balanced between intellect and emotional intelligence. Our intellect allows us to make sound decisions and our emotional intelligence allows us to recognize and manage our own emotions. I am discussing intellect and emotional intelligence because people often fail to see how both impact our decision-making process. What we think and feel does not always align.  And when it comes to matters of the heart we often allow our intellect to be distorted.

What we think and feel does not always align.

You stated that you still love your ex-husband, but not in the dedicated way that you once did. I think that you should focus on this problem area before you entertain anything else. You probably will never be able to have pure love for your ex-husband again, but this does not mean that you cannot love him differently.

Loving him differently might mean that you view him as a sinner who has fell short of your approval. Seeing him in this manner might help you gain a better understanding of how God views all of us. When we fall short he does not change his love for us, but he does expect us to repent. I cannot tell you if your husband is a changed man, but he appears to be regretful man.

Pray to God and ask him to show you who your ex-husband is. Also, do not feel pressured to please Christ because He knows the condition of your heart. You have to learn to be one with Christ and yourself before you can become one with your ex-husband again.

As you think through this dilemma please return to therapy. I believe that you have to combine psychology and theology in order to approach your situation with a balanced perspective.

Historically speaking, theology and psychology have contradicting approaches to addressing and human healing emotional wounds. Theology is the study of religious faith, practice, and experience or the study of God and God’s relation to the world. Theology focuses on spiritual faculties (Faith, Hope, Reverence, Prayer and Worship). Psychology on the other hand, is a natural and social science that deals with the relational aspects of being human. Psychology focuses on reasoning and emotions.

Balancing how you process your situation will enable you to come up with an answer that works best for you. As long as you align your mind with your heart you will find and maintain peace with or without your ex-husband in your life.

Best regards,

Dr. Buckingham

If you have questions for Dr. Dwayne Buckingham regarding relationships (married, single, etc), parenting, or personal growth and development, please send an email to askdrbuckingham@gmail.com

Disclaimer: The ideas, opinions and recommendations contained in this post are not intended as a substitute for seeking professional counseling or guidance. Any concerns or questions that you have about relationships or any other source of potential distress should be discussed with a professional, in person. The author is not liable or responsible for any personal or relational distress, loss or damage allegedly arising from any information or recommendations in this post.

About the author

Dwayne Buckingham wrote 184 articles on this blog.

Dr. Dwayne L. Buckingham, author of Qualified, yet Single: Why Good Men Remain Single and Unconditional Love: What Every Woman and Man Desires in a Relationship, is a highly acclaimed international clinical psychotherapist, life coach, relationship and resiliency expert, motivational speaker and corporate consultant. He is also the President and Chief Executive Officer of R.E.A.L. Horizons Consulting Service, located in Silver Spring, Maryland. To learn more about Dr. Dwayne L. Buckingham visit his website at www.DrBuckingham.com.

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Top 5 Things All Husbands Find Annoying

BY: - 3 May '17 | Marriage

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I know my wife and I aren’t the only ones that still have petty arguments from time to time so… I surveyed a few other husband’s to see what petty arguments we have in common! Well it didn’t take me long to see an overlapping theme.  Tell me if you have them and tell me what you would add to the list! Keep reading!

No, I’m not stopping 3 other places!

Ladies why is it when you find out we are about go to make a run to one store, then you decide it’s a good time to give us a to do list that’s 3 pages long. Instead of going to one store you want us to stop at Wal-Mart, Home Depot, and CVS at the same time. What went from one quick trip to pick up some beers turned into a 3-hour shopping experience.

Get your hand off my plate!

Ladies, just so you know, the reason why we ask you what YOU want when we are at a restaurant or cooking is because we don’t want you putting your hands in our plate. Nothing is more annoying than when we have our plate all set up just like we like it… just for you to reach over and want a bite after you just said you didn’t want anything! Ultimately though, we still end up giving you a piece because we love you.

I’ll do the dishes when I want to!

Why is it that you get so upset if we don’t do something exactly when you want us to do it? If I’m in the middle of doing something and you ask me to do the dishes and I say OK it doesn’t mean I’m going to stop what I’m doing and do it right then and there! It will get done when I get it done.

For every 5 things that irk us, there are are 100 things that bring us joy.

Can we please be on time!

Ok I can respect the process it takes for you to get ready ladies and you look so beautiful when you are done, but why must we argue every time about being on time. We have 5 minutes to be there and yet for some reason we are still at the house and you’re just starting your makeup. Now. we are pacing back and forth looking in the bathroom to see what progress you’ve made and now you have an attitude with us. Don’t ask us why we are rushing and you and instead ask why you didn’t get started earlier. GEESH! LOL

Why aren’t you listening to me!?

PSA – men pretty much have one tracked minds and multi-tasking isn’t our thing so if we are focused on something don’t come and try and hold a serious conversation during that time. The funny thing is that you try to get us to talk while we are busy and then get mad at us for not listening.

Nothing!

If it’s one thing I’ve notice… it’s that my wife can’t stand to see me idol and doing absolutely nothing. Truthfully I live for the moments where I can be doing absolutely nothing but that usually is very short lived. Next thing you know here comes the wife talking about 5 other things that need to be done around the house or yard or something.

Yeah…I know some of these are petty and I know there are so many things that about us husbands that equally irk our wives.  But the beauty of it all is that we still love each other anyways!  Because for every 5 things that irk us, there are are 100 things that bring us joy.  And when you are able to put things into perspective and stay focused on the good things, these small annoyances remain just that…small.

BMWK – Do you agree with this list?  I’m quite sure there are many universal things that irk wives too… let us know.

About the author

Troy Spry wrote 225 articles on this blog.

Troy Spry a Certified Life, Dating, and Relationship Coach and the one and only "Reality Expert", resides in Charlotte, NC. He created his blog, Xklusive Thoughts, with the intent of putting out a very realistic perspective and using it as a vehicle for inspiration! He hopes to challenge people to think differently and inspire people to do and be better in relationships and in life!

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