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There are no scare quotes about “guilt”.

Let us be clear. There are two reasons for divorce if you are Protestant: adultery and wanton abandonment. That’s it. But there are women who want out and do not want to be guilty. The original HuffPo article notes:

And we are talking about women here, so here comes the “guilt.” Women have guilt covered — and these women are no different. They feel guilty as all get out and wonder about what everyone else will think should they decide to leave this “nice” guy. They wonder about the impact it will have on their kids, their extended families, their circle of friends. Deep inside they feel selfish and ask, “What gives me the right to leave my husband when he has done nothing wrong?” And almost immediately after they verbalize that thought, I get this zinger: “I just wish he would have an affair.”

You don’t have that right. Unhappiness does not count, unless you believe in no fault divorce, or are the marital equivelant of a barracks lawyer. I am quoting here from Dalrock. Go and read his piece, please…because I am going to edit it down.

But there is either way a terrible cost to doing what you want to do.  It is a grave act of destruction.  …


So while you won’t be held legally responsible for the destruction you are about to unleash, you need to find a way not to be held morally responsible.  You have to answer the question: How could you profit from inflicting this kind of pain and destruction on the innocent, on your own family?  How could you profit from breaking your own solemn word?  What kind of a monster would do that?

… If you can get moral cover from Christianity this is your best shelter for what you want to do.  Fortunately as I’ve shown repeatedly the corruption of modern Christianity is nearly perfect.  …

But even here you have to work with them.  It isn’t that Christians aren’t willing to gin up a biblical excuse for what you are about to do, but you need to provide them with a kernel to build their biblical rationalization on.  They don’t need your husband to actually commit adultery, just tell them that he viewed pornography.  They don’t need him to actually abuse you, just make an earnest enough pronouncement that he did.  It can be as simple as declaring I will say, I was extremely emotionally abused.  But as I said, you have to give them something however small that they can manufacture into a serious biblical charge.  And don’t worry, it isn’t just Protestants who will do this for you, …

But what if part of you knows that your husband is truly a good man, who doesn’t deserve to be slandered while also (along with your children) bearing the bulk of the cost of the destruction you want to unleash?…    What they need is a patsy, a rube.  They need someone else to volunteer to take the fall for the terrible crime they plan on committing.  There is only one choice;  their husband must be the one to play the patsy.

So much for no fault divorce. It has no psychological merit. You need to know that you are justified in pulling the plug.

Now, for a second, ignore what you are doing to your spouse. Consider, for a second your children. The rate of suicidal ideation among your boys doubles.[1]

Moreover the reasons you want to divorce — it is boring, it is hard, I am not fulfilled, I am not growing, are but seasons in your life. They wax and wane [2]. The covenant is what should keep you together. But… if you see that as tissue paper thin (which is what it is within the law) you should indeed count the cost for your children.

References (to allow for link rot)

1. Fuller-Thomson E, Dalton AD. Suicidal ideation among individuals whose parents have divorced: findings from a representative Canadian community survey. Psychiatry Res. 2011 May 15;187(1-2):150-5.

2. Gottman JM, Krokoff LJ. Marital interaction and satisfaction: a longitudinal view. J Consult Clin Psychol. 1989 Feb;57(1):47-52.

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