We live in a time where divorce is prevalent. People are suffering as a result of their divorce. That is because despite the fact that the divorce rate is high, people enter into marriages believing in their marriage and when it doesn’t work, and especially when their are children involved, both parties suffer. I reiterate that both parties suffer. Handling divorce cases I had a first hand look at parties in action. Sure on the surface there is anger, frustration, greed, spite, and a host of other emotions covering up the pain but it was always clear as day that both parties were suffering as a result of the union breaking. One may be suffering more, but both parties suffer.
Part of that suffering comes from unhealed pain and despair. This sends people down the road of self destruction which can lead to all types of behavior against oneself or the other party involved. Most people do not know what to do with that pain and despair. Most cannot comprehend internally the reality of breaking up and what our system has in place for divorce and for the children of divorce. Separating stuff, time-sharing, breaking it all apart- no matter how much we intellectualize it with the process – both parties have nowhere to go with their pain about the breakup and about what they internalized as a sacred union and its offspring that they become paralyzed and then destructive. They see no mercy anywhere. They see no healing anywhere. They just see a process. Their soul is left unattended.
In speaking about their problems with others what often happens is a demonization process of the other. People tend to take sides, react emotionally to behavior of one or the other party that they deem to be negative and/or hurtful and become judges and arbiters of this family. That is not love. That is not helpful. That contributes to splintering this family further and where there are children involved who will have contact with both parents on a continuing basis, this kind of behavior adds to the heaping despair and suffering going on in the children. So others who know parties to a divorce should not do these kinds of things. They should stick up for the family as a whole. Encourage love and, where there is Faith, a turning to Christ for the family.
To me, the divorce process is just a formal demonization of the other. Attorneys coming in to the process take sides and elevate the negatives of the other except now it is happening in a public way. Others know your scandal, your shortcomings, the venom is on full display. The sacredness of the union and its offspring is now being degraded in public and shredded and then clumsily and artificially forced together after the process adds to the despair and suffering of all involved. Undoing that kind of trauma for all involved, especially the children, well, I think there are plenty of statistics already out there speaking to the effects of divorce on children and the family.
Perhaps some of you can find within your own conscience the strength to love harder when the urge to separate comes to your marriage. Or you can find in your conscience the right amount of love to hand out when divorce is happening. Maybe you know what to do with that despair and trauma through the struggle and suffering within marriage and/or when a divorce is happening. Perhaps counseling is your answer or the comfort of friends or an acceptance. Whatever it is, looking to your conscience is the best tool to push you through suffering times and divorce. The conscience we all share does know right from wrong and will steer you in love far better than the intellect which can rationalize away love, hope, forgiveness, and peace.
For others, who believe in God, I beg all of you to turn to His Son at times of struggle in your marriage and in times of divorce. He is your Hope! Attach yourself to Him and ask for His graces and love for your family. You can find peace while you suffer. You can know mercy while you suffer. You can trust Him to transform your marriage or to carry you through the divorce.
Having a relationship with Him will change everything. Too many people say they believe but they don’t trust Him with anything. They just trust themselves. Do not wallow and spin in yourself. Do not think His Church’s rules do not fit you or you are no longer good enough. He is coming after you – the lost sheep! He is leaving all His other sheep to find YOU. Let Him find you. Bring your circumstances to Him and allow Him to mold your circumstances to Himself. He will love you however things play out. Trust that and ask for His wisdom in your actions and He will provide it. Not a wisdom that the earth knows but a wisdom of a higher order and an entirely different quality.
“But the wisdom from above is first of all pure, then peaceable, gentle, compliant, full of mercy and good fruits, without inconsistency or insincerity. “
James, Chapter 3 V17-18.
Remember the death of Christ on the cross is an absurdity to those who do not understand the way of the cross. Redemption can come through the suffering. Do not be afraid to suffer it out attached to Him. You will find peace in your struggle. You will find love. You probably will not find your own way and you probably will not find your own will. You must be open to His way. But ultimately you will find full and final relief from your despair – real resolution that allows you to go on, in love, not in bitterness with a peace that surpasses all understanding.
This post comes through much prayer to Christ and experience in the legal field and experience in a long-term marriage replete with its own issues. Additionally, inspiration comes from the “Heaven Speaks to” booklets as given to Anne, a lay apostle. These books have been printed with the permission of the Most Reverend Leo O’Reilly, Bishop of Kilmore, Ireland and are currently with the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith for formal examination. It is only because Anne has submitted her mind and heart to final and definitive judgment of the Magisterium of the Catholic Church and the local Bishop regarding the supernatural character of these messages that I direct you to them in this post.
Read the message: Heaven speaks about Divorce (pdf)