A happy marriage is founded on choice and common values

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Marriage partners must learn the skill of maturing through changing circumstances.

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What you need to know:

  • Relationships are dynamic and just as people grow older, so, are their expectations and experiences.
  • In marriage, values are important because they determine our actions and reactions.

Dear Pastor Kitoto,

My wife recently told me that she wants a divorce because she has found another man to marry her. We have been separated for a while. I chose to move out because we have three children with her, it was easier to let her stay in our home with the children.

Our marriage problems began when I couldn’t provide for my family financially. During our separation, she informed me that our last born daughter is not my child. This was very hurtful.

I have learnt that since I moved out, she has been sleeping with other men in our marital bed. I recently got a job, Praise God, and I am now able to provide for my children. I am concerned about their future.

Please advise.

George

Hi,

A wife leaving after conceiving three children with you is something one may find hard to deal with. But, marriage relationships are about a man and woman who have decided and agreed to have a life together as husband and wife.

However, for this to last, certain factors have to be in play. First, is choice. When we choose to get into a relationship as husband and wife, there is no guarantee that everything will remain same throughout the time the two live together. Relationships are dynamic and just as people grow older, so, are their expectations and experiences. Marriage partners must therefore learn the skill of maturing through these changing circumstances.

One important thing is that, although circumstances may change in a relationship, a partner has two make the choice to remain faithful and trustworthy or not. What I see with your wife is a shifting of goal posts of commitment based on the financial status of the family.

Second, is values. In marriage, values are important because they determine our actions and reactions. Statistics show the impact divorce has on children. Most children are worst hit—emotionally and psychologically. If your wife truly cared about the value of a stable home for the growth and future of the children, she would have considered such impact and revised her choices.

Values align our faith and practice thereby helping us not to just be driven by temporal attractions that come with relationships. If indeed she has been drawn away because of money, then who knows, she could as well move to another when situations change financially in the current relationship. Our marriage foundation must be on lasting values like honesty, commitment, faithfulness and many others.

I am writing from a counsellor’s viewpoint and from a position of hindsight based on the experience gain in those 20 years. Not that I am perfect, but just to say, in relationships, no one is perfect. Relationships are about two imperfect people seeking this perfect union that can most times be illusive. Endurance, faith and good communication helps one keep walking.

Love is real

I am not sure if finances is the only issue that bothered your wife until she fell for another man. Try and examine your actions over the years and evaluate her reactions to those actions. This departure could have been in the making for a few years. If so, re-examine your ways and see where you need to change so that you can be a better man.

Since marriage is about the union of two willing lovers, no one can force you back together again. For there to be healing, there has to be a stronger pull that would turn either of you around. Love is real. The feeling you have is out of that connection you felt the two of you had together.

I suggest that: First, you determine some strong reasons that would make you desire reconnection. Second, seek an appointment so that you two can talk. Third, discuss the issues that cause the two of you to split. Are these issues irreparable? Fourth, seek help from your spiritual leader. Remember, a mature person who both of you admire can make a good counsellor. The sad fact is, marrying a person with wrong values can impact a believer’s faith and lead them to negate their beliefs. Guard your heart carefully.

Of greatest concern in all this mix-up are your innocent children. The complication for you is the discovery that the last born of the three children is from this other gentleman. Imay suggest is that, you handle this information with care. Relative that, this child may or may not be aware that their real father is not you. It is possible that, such knowledge shared carelessly could hurt the child immensely and may be into the future.

If the information you have is based on hearsay, I would suggest that you don’t share the information until it is authenticated. If she is determined to live her life without you, then heal and move on. But look for proper ways to gain access to your children. Since you are their biological father, you have a right of access. Looking for legal redress will be helpful. I also realise that you are a church going person, I encourage you to pray about this as you seek God’s help. 

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