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"What Part Did You Play?"

Have you heard people ask individuals who have experienced divorce to consider the part they played in the demise of their marriage?

If you have been the victim of narcissistic abuse in your marriage and now the marriage is over, please consider the following as the part you may have played in its demise.

The short answer is that you stayed too long and gave too much.

Can I just affirm you for being committed to your vows? Thank you for taking your marriage seriously. Thank you for wanting to honor God and your husband.

Let's tackle this unfortunate reality that you stayed too long. What made you stay too long, which in turn fed the darkness in the man who professed to love you, but dealt treacherously with you, trampling your love instead?

Consider this....

You kept forgiving and accepting apologies while waiting for repentance. You kept forgiving and giving more and more chances for repentance. He kept receiving and the dark places inside of him - the wounded places that objectify you and see you as supply - kept growing. You did not fully understand that forgiveness does not equal relationship. His lack of repentance destroyed your marriage.

You kept trying to pray and fast more, believing that someday the miracle would come. You did not understand that while God is a miracle worker, He is too much of a gentleman to ever override someone's will. Your ex-husband took advantage of your fiath, love, commitment, and hope for better days. His decision to trample upon your love. love-bomb, and future fake, which fanned the flames of false hope, confusing your ability to see clearly and act sooner on the truth that your marriage needed to end, destroyed your marriage.

You recognized and were empathetic about his mother and father wounds, but you couldn't see that the problems in your marriage were not marriage problems. Instead, they were individual, character problems. Your staying and enduring this "marriage" to fulfill your commitment to being the good Christian wife fed the darkness. He was never going to truly love you while he was actively scapegoating you. His denial of his need for help to process and heal from his wounds so he could stop bleeding on people who never cut him destroyed your marriage.

You kept trying to give to and do more for a man with a disordered personality who is never satisfied. He could not be satisfied with you and all of the wonderful, special parts of you, and all of the ways you enriched his life and the lives of your children because he was not satisfied with himself. His rejection of the Lord's ability to make him whole and healthy in order to receive the beautiful love you offered destroyed your marriage.

Your intentions were to support and help, but the effect was that of enabling abuse, fueled by your desire to honor your wedding vows. While you knew his treatment of you was wrong, you did not understand that it was abuse. As a result, you vowed to stay by his side - honoring "for better or worse" - until he saw his need for the Lord. You didn't understand that separation can be an act of love. You did not understand that unconditional love does not mean unconditional relationship. You did not understand that divorce was a biblically acceptable option. His manipulation of opportunities for help destroyed your marriage.

You treated him with the care and consideration you share with others, so you remained patient, believing that he was processing life like others. He wasn't seeing the world like you and other healthy people, however. You couldn't see that narcissists view people as tools, toys, or obstacles. You couldn't see that rather than being redemptive and solution oriented, communication for narcissists is always self-serving. His objectification of people destroyed your marriage.

You knew that his unfaithfulness as well as lack of affection was not as a result of anything you were or were not doing, but you wanted to be longsuffering. You knew the problem was his and somehow related to some wounding in his life. You wanted to support his healing. You did not understand that his goal in being unfaithful and withholding affection were expressions of emotional and sexual abuse. His perversity and disregard for the sanctity of your union destroyed your marriage.

In the end, you began to see more of the truth about the one called husband and the light exposed the darkness. Instead of your presentations of truth being met with humility, they were met with disdain (Prov 12:1) and cruelty as his mask began to drop completely. His hatred of truth destroyed your marriage.

He destroyed something that could have been very beautiful. It takes two to make a marriage work, it's true. However, it only takes one to destroy it.

Friend. be assured that the Lord was and is grieved by your experience. He has captured every tear. He has been right by your side, giving you strength and comfort, being your true husband. He knows the sacrifices you made. He will honor your commitment to your vows. He will redeem your pain. He will give you beauty for ashes. Keep your head up and keep trusting Him.

Your voice matters. Your story matters. Your valley will be exalted and your triumph will bring glory to God

Read how to consider another statement that revictimizes survivors: "There are three sides to every story: His, Hers, and the Truth."

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