Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A Broken Woman

"Believe, when you are most unhappy, that there is something for you to do in the world. So long as you can sweeten another's pain, life is not in vain."
- Helen Keller

It was such a sad interview I saw last night on Larry King. Dealing with infidelity in a relationship is everyone's worst nightmare. After trust has been broken, it can be hard for a relationship to move forward. In fact, many couples never recover from this muddle and separate for good. How much more to a high-profile couple where the whole country had known about it?

Okay, I’m talking about Larry’s interview of Elizabeth Edwards- her dealing with the cheating spouse John Edwards who admitted in August that he had an affair with Rielle Hunter, then 42. Hunter was hired to make a movie about Edwards, then making his second try for the Democratic presidential nomination. It is definitely a tough spot to be in- a cheating spouse (the affair had apparently been known to everybody in his staff except to her and he later denied the allegations) while at the same time, battling with incurable cancer. Although, she kept saying she had forgiven him and that she had bounced back- thus the title of her book, Resilience- she still sounded like she’s not healed at all. She said she’s a different person now which I took as a “broken woman” trying to be whole again.

You know, I’ve witnessed quiet a few of these “cheating” scenarios" before. Two of my close friends (whom I’ve known since high school & college), were separated from their cheating husbands. While it’s very easy to say, “it’s over” and be bitter about it; the options are quiet difficult though when you have kids.

The cheating husband is more prevalent in my culture than a cheating wife (yeah, double-standard). The society can’t seem to tolerate the fact that a wife is cheating. Worst scenario, you have to stay married all your life despite the infidelity and abandonment; unless you have thousands of dollars to file for an annulment since the church doesn’t allow divorce. I’m a big believer of “marriage should last a lifetime” and “no divorce under any circumstances” but seeing the suffering of my friends, I thought they deserved to be happy too.

“What would you do, if it were you?” a close friend had asked me few days ago.

Sure, she was fishing for some answers but when the question sank in, I was lost for words. Then, I remembered the prayers I’ve been reciting ever since I was a kid: “That God will give more strength to those broken-hearted”. Something that you don’t want anybody to undergo but it happens.

The part where I liked the most about Elizabeth Edwards responses is “things just happen”. She had forgiven herself and freed herself from the burden and guilt of “not doing the right thing” and dealing with it takes time, patience and dedication.

6 Grateful Heart's Words:

Debbie said...

I didn't see the interview but my heart does go out to Elizabeth Edwards. Cheating ruins the trust in a marriage. And it can be hard to be rebuilt. However, I've also known couples who have been able to work at their marriage after a situation like this. However, it takes time and work on both partners.

As you said, most times it's the husband but occasionally it's the wife. Marriage can be hard at times. Often people think because they don't always feel IN LOVE that it's time to move on. But I disagree. Over time there will always be some moments of not feeling that way. And yet you can work at creating fun and romantic times together.

Ideally, I am against divorce but in certain situations I have to say that it might be for the best, particularly if there is no change. No one should have to put up with any verbal or physical abuse for sure. And cheating is wrong.

CPA Board Exam said...

Marriage is holy and vows made during the marriage must not be broken.That's why I am really against divorce and annulment.

Gruggers said...

Divorce can be salvation for a dead marriage. We should remember that a marriage contract is actually a civil contract; God has nothing to do with it. Old church rules were established to protect women, but these rules were used against them to imprison them, to bind them in oppressive, abusive relationships forever, with death the only escape. That death was often found to be preferable is shameful to ALL civilizations. Religions work in favor of MEN, around the World, nearly without exception. Let's modernize marriage and remove the stigma from divorce.

Mel Avila Alarilla said...

Hi Shawie,
Men and women are operating on a different societal level. If every woman who have a case of marital infidelity with her husband will just throw the towel and file for divorce or annulment, then marriage will definitely be a cheap piece of brittle paper. Men are by nature polygamous. Remember the days when kings have harems and Solomon having 200 wives and a thousand concubines. Society, especially in he Philippines and Asia, accepts the realities of philandering husbands but never an unfaithful wife. With most men, it is just the heat or some temporary obsession but when they come to their senses, they go back to their legal wife. Lani Mercado survived the philandering days of her husband, so did Sandy Andolong. Some men are just so obsessed with their macho image that they cheat on their wives and consider their activities as just temporary flings. Having another house with another woman is entirely different for there is now another commitment by the philandering husband. That is when a wife should draw the line. Thanks for your post. God bless you always.

Warren Baldwin said...

Hi. I linked here from Debbie's blog. This is sad post dealing with a subject that is far too common. I appreciate your perspective on it. Not only are leaders like this faithless to the vows to their spouses, but also to the people they lead.

Could I invite you to read a couple of artices I poste about this on one of my blogs? I have Family Fountain which has short articles and Bible Fountain which has longer ones. Under the label marriage on Bible Fountain are the two articles: "The Heart of a Godly Man Toward his Wife" and "May Your Fountain be Blessed." One of them is here: Anyway, if you get to look, thanks. I enjoyed your blog. WB

alom_doank said...

a really nice blog!!!!