Divorce Causes & Victims

Apr 10th, 2007, in Society, by

The causes of divorce, and adulterous women.

The main causes of divorce, says a report by the National Child Protection Commission (Komnas PA), are economic pressures (23%), followed by domestic squabbling (19%), incompatibilty (19%), interference by relatives (14%), violence (12%), adultery (8%), and sexual problems (3.6%). However these figures are based on only 109 cases.

Of the nine cases of divorce caused by adultery seven of these involved adultery committed by the woman. Arist Merdeka Sirait of Komnas PA says he was really suprised to learn this.

but that is what we found.

The divorce rate goes up every year, Arist says, by about 3%. In 2006 there were 3,000 cases of formally processed divorce in DKI Jakarta.

The main victims of divorce, says Arist, are children, the long term effects of divorce on children disturbs their development and they often are deprived of contact with some members of their family, both close and extended. tempo


40 Comments on “Divorce Causes & Victims”

  1. avatar Andrew says:

    It’s funny that some of the root causes mentioned here are not really root cause at all. How can domestic squabbling be a root cause? Adultery isn’t always a root cause in itself.

  2. avatar Odinius says:

    A sample size of 109 is going to give you a fairly large standard error, which means the results are really not generalizable to any population. Besides, in a country made up of a zillion islands and 33 (I think) provinces, how can a sample of 109 be representative?

  3. avatar Robert says:

    However these figures are based on only 109 cases.

    109 cases on a population of 240 Million makes this report almost worthless. Especially when you see there are already 3000 reported cases in Jakarta.

  4. avatar Marie Antoinette says:

    The divorce rate goes up every year, Arist says, by about 3%.

    Does Indonesia Matters know what the rate of divorce is at the moment? How does it compare to other countries?

  5. avatar Parvita says:

    When a woman got caught having an affair, the man usually cannot forgive because of pride. On the contrary, men are “permitted” to play around and considered natural. And usually the woman don’t have the guts to ask for divorce because of the social status and/or financial status. Sad but true.

    The divorce rate goes up every year, Arist says, by about 3%.

    Maybe people are getting…..smarter?

  6. avatar Yunir says:

    Dear Andrew,
    Interesting idea you have.
    Yeh, it’s probably Satan that is the root cause of it all.
    Or maybe, the Government!? How about religion? Or perhaps the lack of it?

    Dear Parvita,
    You seem to suggest it’s actually desirable for couples to get divorce whenever one of them commit adultery. I think this is not right. No matter who commits the adultery – men or women, divorce should not be filed solely based on that. Because the adultery was probably committed regretfully. Divorce is not the only solution. Sure, giving up is easy, but it does not necessarily resolve problems.

    In any case, divorce rates of most developed countries are sustainably high. But the agenda has now shifted to a whole new probem – Low rate of marriages. Soon, Indonesia too will probably have its problems shifted from high divorce rates to low marriage cases and also, the ageing of the population.

  7. avatar Parvita says:

    Yunir: I’m saying men easily divorce women if the women commit adultry. But the opposite is not happening because women in this country fear for being a divorcee, or probably financially not independant. Or have you heard about, “I forgive him because I love him?”. Indonesian guys are so proud they don’t even want to marry a non virgin, even though if they are not virgin anymore.

    Because the adultery was probably committed regretfully

    Adultery is cheating. Cheating hurts the trust. If you cannot trust your spouse, what’s the point of the marriage? It’s a valid reason for a divorce. Why stick to a marriage that turns sour? Maybe somebody can live with a person they don’t trust, not me.

    I found out that in Pengadilan Negeri Jakarta Selatan, there are more women filing for divorce then men. Are they getting more educated? Or plain smarter? Know when the marriage is not working then just snap out of it to not waste time?

    This country sees divorce as such a stigma. It is one alternative for a sour, unhealthy marriage.

  8. avatar Yunir says:

    Hi Parvita, I agree with you actually, with the fact that women are not easily capable of getting a ‘divorce’ as compared to men. This is because of financial depnedency on the men as you have suggested.

    Once women have been empowered, they are free to live on their own. Don’t need men to take care of women anymore. This is why developed countries are facing the problem of people not getting married.

    You siad:

    It is one alternative for a sour, unhealthy marriage.

    And you right. It is one alternative, but not the only alternative. I am not saying divorce is wrong. But the idea that it is OK for people to get married today and divorce tomorrow enforces the idea of individualism and undermines the significance of families. (I do not wish to take on the discussion on individualism here on this thread)

    You also said:

    Adultery is cheating. Cheating hurts the trust. If you cannot trust your spouse, what’s the point of the marriage? Why stick to a marriage that turns sour?

    On the contrary, if the guilty regrets his/her actions, the other partner should have the faith to trust that the regret is sincere. Give the marriage a second chance is what I mean. If things don’t work out, only then a divorce is probbly due.

    On a side note:
    Please don’t imply any progress of women or race as being attributed to “becoming smarter”. This is an extremely narrow and ignorant perspective of changing social conditions.

    thx

  9. avatar Parvita says:

    Hi Yunir, (I suppose you are a male judging from your name),

    Once women have been empowered, they are free to live on their own. Don’t need men to take care of women anymore. This is why developed countries are facing the problem of people not getting married.

    Once women have been empowered, they have higher bargaining price; they don’t sell short. They don’t need a men that will drag their down. If the man will make their life quality lower, why bother getting married? This is only natural. Even in the animal kingdom, the female chose the best male to conceive the best sperm. It is oh so natural. It is humans that do silly things for a thing called ‘status’.

    Please don’t imply any progress of women or race as being attributed to “becoming smarter”. This is an extremely narrow and ignorant perspective of changing social conditions.

    During the 70’s women asking for divorce is almost unheard of. This is the life of a successful women in Indonesia: Finish school (don’t need to go too high) – get married-have children. THAT is the measure of success for a women, not only in Indonesia but probably a value that is being carried in Asia. Go to a kampong and if a 20 years old is not married, they are considered old maids. A woman, even though she is successful in her career, but if she doesn’t have a family, she’s not a complete women. Having a career is a plus. Having a bigger salary than the husband doesn’t count. Women are living based on what people think.

    Nowdays, we are exposed to lots of things. TV, internet, magazines, people are getting more information and the chance for women to reach the top is more opened. With this evolution, women are more independant and they have the same rights to work and be treated like their male counterpart. They make decisions, they have their own lives, they have the power to buy what they want, their standard of living and expectation became higher than what it is used to be. If adultery and affairs were tolerated during the past, nowdays it is not. Having a husband that only lays around in the house not working but spending the wives’ money is not expected. I would say (and hope) that women knows what they value now, that they are not just an object, and they also deserve to be served and treated with respect. If women back there are happy someone wants to marry them, women nowdays will think if the marriage will make her life less better than what they have right now, they won’t plunge into a marriage and will wait. Before, life evolves around the men and the children only. You don’t have to wait for the men to commit adultery, if the men only comes home, just watch TV and doesn’t want to communicate and talk heart to heart, demands this and that, that is enough to make the women to get out of the house. Nowdays, women dare to ask, “What about me?”.

    They now know that they deserve happiness, too. That is probably why women dare to file divorces because they might realize that they are not happy in their marriages. If mom and dad are not happy, children will not be happy.

    Don’t think coming to decision for a divorce is easy as flipping a pancake, it is mentally not easy, it takes long thinking (speaking of years living in a misery) and courage to get to that decision. You have to face the family, the neighbours, the surroundings, people gossiping. Things must have been so bad that they choose that road. Especially if children are involved, that must be one brave women to come to that decision!

    Look at the ‘big people’ above. How many men, ministers, DPRs, businessmen, past and present, that fools around and have mistress or ask for escort women when they are out on business trip? DO you hear the wives filing for divorce? Nope. They are either smart, or they don’t care, or afraid of their status, inheritage. Its their choice. How many women are hit and abused but they don’t dare to go seek help because they think that they deserve to be hit just because the coffee was not hot enough? And gave second chance, believing that “he loves me” and give second, third, forth chance to get beaten again? I feel sorry for them, I don’t blame them.

    Cheating? Do you get second chance at work if you are caught stealing files and information? Or misuse of the company facility? Not in my business. Cheating in marriage? I don’t blame those who can forgive and hope that it won’t happen again.

    So, Yunir, you might not like my opinion as a man. Women knowing what they want is one of the reason why more women nowdays have the courage to file divorce. They had a dream about being a princess by getting married to live happily ever after, the dream didn’t happen, and they move on. Nothing wrong with pursuing happiness. Life is too short to be sad.

    Life is gud!

  10. avatar Ihaknt says:

    I agree with P. Coming out and making that decision “that’s enough! I won’t put up with it anymore” is not as easy as turning your hand. The guilt, the stress, the sadness, the getting out of the comfort zone, the fear of the unknown can be unbeArable at times. Seriously, if Cinderella’s story continued, she wouldn’t be living her prince charming anymore, as we all know princes normally have many mistresses. And this goes for Sleeping Beauty, Romeo and Juliet, etc. They’re all fantasies.

    Are women smarter these days? Maybe. But I think women have choices these days. We have careers, we earn money (sometimes even more than our men), can make our own decision, choose our own way of life. People make wrong decisions sometimes (who hasn’t?), it is a pity if that happens that you marry the wrong person. Because it is a costly mistake, mentally and financially. It can also be physically draining! Things don’t really show until you get married. Love is blind, marriage is an eye opener. Many people also hope/expect that marriage will fix the problems they have when they are pacaran. Many find after that their expectations are not met, their partner are not the person they married, etc. I do agree with Yunir also when it comes to wedding today, divorce tomorrow, that it shouldn’t be like that. If one wants to split, then I believe it should only happen when every single sources of reconciliation has been tried. Councelling, couples therapies, etc. Sometimes 2 people are just better to be apart. In my view it’s better to have parents who are civilised and get along well although apart, then together in one house, but yell and be abusive (physical and verbal) with each other and build the negative resentment energies. Kids learn from what they see and hear. No one should live in this kind of situation, especially kids.

    Yunir said

    This is why developed countries are facing the problem of people not getting married.

    Yunir, ‘problem’ is not the right word. It’s not an issue not to be in a marriage over there. What the government is concerned about is the low birth rate. In Australia, they even pay the citizen to get pregnant.

  11. avatar Parvita says:

    Ahhh, I love that, Ihaknt: love is blind, marriage is an eye-opener. If I have a daughter, no princess stories. Pinokio is the best.

  12. avatar Yunir says:

    Hi Ihaknt,
    yeh… I agree that the ‘concern’ is of birth rate.

    But the concensus is that people get married first before they start to have kids.
    Having one child may not be a problem… but when it gets to two or three…. a strong family is needed.

    So in order for the issue of birth rate to be solved, the idea of marriage has to be propagated first. And some of this can be seen with some State governments that actually give incentives to employers that have pro-family policies.

    I agree that there are couples who are willing to have children without getting married. But this is the exception and not the norm.

    Hi Parvita,

    Once women have been empowered, they have higher bargaining price; they don’t sell short. They don’t need a men that will drag their down. If the man will make their life quality lower, why bother getting married? This is only natural. Even in the animal kingdom, the female chose the best male to conceive the best sperm. It is oh so natural. It is humans that do silly things for a thing called ‘status’.

    I agree. You have mirrored my sentiments.

    Now, about your long argument to prove that women have become “smarter”, I also agree. Though, the reasons are definitely non-exhaustive. And I now see what you mean.

    But I think what you mean is that women have since gained financial independence and have also seen numerious options opened up to them. The word “smarter” is a bit too simplistic.

    —-
    Now Parvita, you said,

    So, Yunir, you might not like my opinion as a man.

    Are you saying I am gender-biased?

    When did I say, Women should forgive men but not vice versa or anything like that? Where did I make myself favour men over women in my statements?

    If you are not implying I am gender-biased, then, you should not have made the above statement. It should not have been an issue.

  13. avatar Ihaknt says:

    Having one child may not be a problem”¦ but when it gets to two or three”¦. a strong family is needed.

    Yunir, I half agree with this statement. Regardless how many kids, a strong family is needed. But of course, when you have many kids, the women tend to stay in the relationship even though they are unhappy. The reasons can be anything from financial dependence, social status, to thinking that they have no choice. But my point is that, sometimes 2 people are better off apart. Sometimes the separation may be good for every one. It may not seem that way in the beginning, but it gets better. We are all adults, life goes on. Unless of course one gets killed by the other. Personally, if I fought all the time with my partner and my kids saw it, I’d much rather live apart from my partner so my kids wouldn’t have to hear/see adults being abusive towards each other, because it’s just not a way to live. Not mine anyway. Back to your statement though, if the couple separate and they have 1 kid, I’d feel sorry for the kid, as he/she will feel lonely. Only-child tends to bottle his/her emotion when it comes to dealing with such issue. At least with a sibling they can share. Anyway, there’s no clear black and white when you’re dealing with emotion. Have you personally been ever through it Yunir? If you haven’t, I can tell you nothing sux more than this.

  14. avatar Yunir says:

    Hi Ihaknt, you have thus supported my earlier statements.

    It (divorce) is one alternative, but not the only alternative. I am not saying divorce is wrong. But the idea that it is OK for people to get married today and divorce tomorrow enforces the idea of individualism and undermines the significance of families.

  15. avatar Tuan Tua says:

    The sample (109) is meaningless. It has about the same validity as reading tea leaves.

    What is interesting/telling is that most comment centres around infidelity. According to the ‘research’ it rated 2nd last to sexual problems.

    Ironic isn’t it – economic pressure was the top factor – almost 300% higher than infidelity.

    Not one comment.

  16. avatar Dan says:

    Once women have been empowered, they have higher bargaining price; they don’t sell short. They don’t need a men that will drag their down. If the man will make their life quality lower, why bother getting married? This is only natural. Even in the animal kingdom, the female chose the best male to conceive the best sperm. It is oh so natural. It is humans that do silly things for a thing called ‘status’.

    This statement really bothers me — not because women are supposedly “empowered”, but because of underlying statement it makes. At the core, it says, “If men can be two bit lying sluts, then so can women…”

    The root cause of divorce is not because some husband or wife is being neglectful and therefore the bored spouse has to go outside the marriage to get his or her attention and “needs” met.

    How many abandoned spouses have agonized endlessly with so much regret and self blame because the abusive, unfaithful, deceitful, spineless, whore in the marriage let the faithful spouse and their children carry the blame???

    Truth is, divorce happens because one spouse chooses, and I mean, CHOOSES, to be a pathetic, lying, spineless, self indulging, cowardly, arrogant jackass and whore.

    What worth does the word or the promise of such a slut hold? None. There is no love of truth behind his or her promises. They only promise to get something, but they have no honor and it is only the fool who won’t admit to the obvious fact that there is no honor in such a person’s word.

    These people would destroy the very family and foundation of love they promised to protect for their own children, and yet they act incredulous when someone states the obvous fact that they have no real love for their children. It’s all a scam. A person who can scam his or her spouse with promises of enduring love can scam anyone including their own children. How can one know this? The marriage wrecking whore proves it in his or her actions in plain view.

    Oh, how we detest the horrors of child molestation, and yet for some reason as a society we tolerate abortion and the ripping to shreds of a child’s own family. How stupid! How self-contradictory! How hypocritical!

    One the one hand people who defend this slut-like behavior cry, “thou shalt not judge”, and on the other hand, they judge their children and spouse unworthy of kept promises and worthy to be discarded or deprived and robbed mercilessly. And, the rest of us who are hurt and left behind are somehow supposed to accept all of this with understanding and patience without a word against such stupid harlotry!

    Get a grip. There’s a darn good reason for a loving God to send some people to hell. Look at those involved in terrorism and the Inquisition and witch burnings and all of the corruptions that flow into the church from the paganism we have cherished and worshipped unreasonably for so long.

    And, yet no martyr having been torn asunder with hooks ever suffered the miseries of the child whose parents have begun to whore around on his or her marriage!

    I fear few know even the first thing about what marriage is all about. So many people claim the “right” to divorce for any reason at any time without cause. If that is so, then what does marriage mean anyway? When I hear the very words spoken in the common marriage, I hear all assurances given that the couple is wilfully denying themselves that kind of right with an oath to God before all society.

    I tell you the worth of the word of a marriage breaking slut is worse than worthless. It is downright harmful. It guides honorable people to turn their lives into a direction they would not otherwise follow without such promises. It’s a swindle. Worse than a lie.

    Oh, what about abuse? The spirit of adultery and abuse are closely related. Where you find a person leaving into an adulterous affair, you find a person who is abusive and unfaithful to the core.

    How many people have abused their spouses mercilessly, threatening to leave if they don’t get what they want, threatening affairs, threatening divorce, calling names, abusing verbally, slandering, and then upon going into an affair, they seek to bring up their own standing in the public place among friends and church by slandering the faithful and hurting widow of divorce left behind?

    And, the person who defends this behavior is every bit the whore as the person who indulges in it because they assert that they might do likewise given the same situation. Only the lack of that situation exists, but the heart is no different.

    And, what I find so offensive is that there is so little support for the widow and widower of divorce and so much support for the unfaithful and abusive slut of divorce. So much suffering is heaped endlessly upon the ones so horribly robbed and so little comfort and support and help is given let alone any kind of protection.

    This needs to change and it needs to change with each of us, and it needs to change now!!!

  17. avatar Stephen says:

    Hi,

    This is an interesting discussion to me as I am a foreigner (bule) who was married to an Indonesian Muslim woman. I even changed my faith to Islam to be acceptable to her family. She was unfaithful to me many, many times and eventually I had enough and couldn’t forgive her any more. I tried everything to save the marriage and she just did not care, she said she needed her “freedom.”

    Even though I haven’t seen her for over a year we are still married. I have no idea where she is, her parents didn’t even realise we were separated when I contacted them recently. She hadn’t even told them (probably because of the shame factor?)

    I honestly was a very kind and understanding husband and I cared for my wife deeply and provided for her well financially. Her decision to cheat and end our relationship appears to have been simply because she lied and never really cared about me in the first place.

    Just thought this might add some perspective to this interesting topic, especially on the aspect of this study indicating that Indonesian women’s infidelity has been cited as a reason in more cases than the husband’s infidelity…

    By the way, I am wanting to get a divorce now…but I don’t even know where she is!

  18. avatar Farah says:

    Reports based on 109, reasons for divorce, dogmas, status…

    What use is all this to us who needs help?

    or am I in the wrong site…
    I need help, and am trying to find a site on how to get a divorce in Jakarta, what are the steps to take,
    what are the women’s rights..
    what are her obligations…
    where to go… what to do..

    you are darn right Pravita, it takes courage for a woman to ask for a divorce..
    it took me 25 years of , thinking and rethinking, forgiving and reforgiving,
    25 years of living a lie..
    before making the decision..

    maybe I have finaly become smarter.

    and yes, by me staying on.. dragging on for this long… has its consequenses, my children have silently suffered …
    what for?
    dogma’s?
    security?
    status?
    finance?

    it is so not worth it if you loose yourself..

    now..

    can anybody point me to a Jakarta divorce page please..
    a usefull and helpful one this time..

    carry on guys.

    *****

  19. avatar shine says:

    Hi! I’m a foreigner and married with an indonesian man then we have one son. I just wanna know after we get married we are always arguing i was just thinking maybe because part of our adjustments in life. And now we are both adjusted, but why every time that we have an argue no one wants to be loose. Why, i always feel that my husband always pulling me down, what i mean don’t trust me that i know about this, that? Every time that I”m recieving for Interview he’s always saying the words against from my ability. I’m a negative thinker always thinking negative about my husband but honestly that is what i really feel. Every time that we are arguing I always thinking to make divorce. But im scared with whom my son to be with. Im depending on him and it’s really hard for me that’s why I’m always applying for a job to helps me to be independent. I cannot go outside do jalan jalan by myself with my son too. I always scared.

    Please do some help how will I cover this feelings. I need your advice.

  20. avatar Dan says:

    Sometimes marriage is difficult. I feel a little guilty to say that because I feel my marriage right now is really great and I feel my wife is to be thanked for that. I am truly a very blessed man.

    So, it would seem I am hardly the one to have any right to say marriage can be difficult or to judge anyone else who is having a hard time, and most certainly judging other people is not something I would want to be doing anyway, though I can be a little hard sometimes in bringing out truths I feel are necessary but difficult to take.

    But, this is my second marriage, not my first.

    In my first marriage, the pastor who counseled us and performed our wedding ceremony gave good, solid advice. Never say the D word, meaning never threaten divorce. Speak about the good in one another. Never tear each other down before other people. If you have problems in your marriage, never, ever share those problems with a member of the opposite sex unless that person present with their spouse and is a counselor of some kind whether professional or pastoral, etc. as many people fall into affairs that way.

    And for a long time I felt I tried to stay true to that standard. It was always my desire to have one marriage for life. But, my first wife would break any rule necessary to get her way in many situations. It was not as though I wanted to deny her wishes just to be mean an arrogant, but there were simply times when I had a difference of opinion and did not want to do something she was demanding that I do. So, she would cuss at me, scream at me, threaten to divorce me and such.

    Strange thing is I saw her do these things to her sister and parents long before we were married, and I still chose to marry her. I have to say that was not a very brilliant decision on my part, but I was not thinking clearly. I was “in-love”. I later learned that she suffered from bipolar disorder, and I would stand by her for years supporting her, taking her to the doctor, seeking the best treatment available diligently, loving her, standing by her when some coulselors suggested I consider leaving the marriage because of all the trouble it could bring to the family.

    But, I had said my vows including the part that says in sickness and in health. And, we had a young daughter. I felt it would be selfish and cowardly and dishonest and unjust to break up our marriage and leave my wife alone in her mental disorder.

    She later began seeking new experiences, hitting the discos, having affairs, and her second affair would lead to the breakup of our marriage.

    But, as I thought back on that situation, I began to realize that a person who threatens divorce to get what he or she wants is not a faithful person, but a rather immature, selfish, cowardly, narcissistic person.

    Think of what it means when a person threatens divorce or says, “If you don’t give me what I want, I will find someone who will”. In essence, they’re telling you they are a lying, unfaithful whore who has no intention of keeping vows or promises for reason of their own integrity and honor, but rather than their honor means nothing to them at all, and the only thing that keeps them around is their feeling of getting what they want.

    So, if a person wants to be honorable at heart and in character, he or she must make a hard determined commitment to stay the course regardless of feelings that come and go and without regard to whether his or her spouse complies with their every wish.

    When people argue, why does it matter who is right? Pride? Self glorification? One person wants to assert, “I’m right and you’re wrong”, or “I’m smarter”, or “I’m more observant” or “I’m more reliable” or “I’m less hypocritical” or “I’m more real” or “I’m whatever…”

    Then the other person gets ticked off and hates being cast down and walked on like a floor mat, and so the competition begins. One person wants to be superior and the other wants to put him or her in his or her place. So, they become inferior spouses and inferior lovers trying to be superior by tearing down their marriage.

    And, children get caught in the middle.

    Not only that, but children never get a chance to see good conflict resolution modelled and they learn from an example that breeds into them the propensity to fail in relationships and in marriage.

    So, then the family breaks up. For really stupid reasons. And both spouses are screaming and shouting and strategizing how to get the better end of a very bad deal while lawyers get rich on both sides hoping for the most injustice they can bring knowing that if the faithful spouse in the divorce is screwed over sufficiently, he or she will be more likely to bring the matter back to court again and again and again to get this wrong righted. After all, that is the only place they can take this issue.

    And eventually, they get tired, worn out, broke, hurt, and full of dread every time any mention is made of court or government or lawyers or marriage or divorce.

    Then what happens to the children? Sometimes they feel abandoned by one parent. Their right and their need to grow up in a family with loving parents has been violated and stolen from them by the stupidity of pride. Their parents lack the competence and social intelligence and integrity and sincerity of love to press through the difficult times and teach their children how to mature through trials and tribulations. Instead, they learn to flee like cowards from every form of discomfort.

    So, the children wonder where their source of stabile love is. Perhaps they cling to friends. Perhaps they’re willing to become part of a gang or give in to social pressures to take drugs or have sex or smoke.

    Daughters who grow up without their fathers are much more likely to fall into premarital relationships with boys or men and are much more likely to become pregnant in their teens, and children of divorce are more likely to get sexually transmitted diseases.

    The fear of losing yet another relationship can lead many children into dangerous behavior where light drugs lead to heavy drugs which lead to robbery and violence.

    Suicide rates among divorce adults and children of divorce is many times higher than it is for people in a stable family. When our family broke up, our daughter and I both had to fight back thoughts of suicide, and I know this is not at all uncommon.

    The stupidity of common divorce laws these days can drive the most peaceful, kind, gentle, loving and faithful parents into such unimagineable atrocities as killing their whole family or an attorney or judge before turning a gun on themselves. And people close to the couple are left shocked because this would have been so far away from anything anyone would have expected.

    Children of divorce often suffer academically. Sometimes they recover and do excellently later, but sometimes they don’t. Some codependencies sometimes form in children of divorce where the children become accustomed to living in an unhealthy situation with an unfaithful parent perhaps with their partner in adultery who broke the marriage, and sometimes with one partner after another after another.

    But when the courts give the children to the faithful spouse, justice prevails and the source of income of the family courts immediately dries up.

    When the children are with the unfaithful and irresponsible spouse, the faithful spouse can be forced to work hard and surrender much of their income to the unfaithful spouse and their partners giving great incentive for people without honor to frequent the “married but looking” web sites and cruise for an affair. After all, if they can get a married person and can get the children as well, they can get a share of the faithful spouse’s income.

    This also provides a great incentive for the unfaithful spouse to go after someone who is rich knowing they can share the wealth of two partners.

    It is part of what makes my beloved country of the United States such a whorehouse of adultery and divorce.

    But it really is not good for the children. It is a very cowardly way for attorneys to get rich. And it really is a prostitution of justice that harms the children and society.

    I think it also plays a major part in the economic struggles we are going through here in America because although the unfaithful spouse gets to keep the children and the house, the faithful spouse must endure the robbery of a corrupt justice system and its lawyers and the loss of a house and child support and his or her ability to afford to buy things is greatly diminished. There are more single parents struggling to make ends meet once the adulterous affair breaks up, as it usually does. And, when the faithful spouse feels his or her efforts do nothing but support this harlotry and injustice, there is hardly any incentive to continue to work hard to make a good salary. So, the judge has to crack the whip, but then the beaten down spouse would often rather just commit suicide and get out from under this terrible misery. Sadly, most religions believe a person who commits suicide won’t make it to heaven because they’re ending their life in an act of sin rather than having faith in God to carry them through.

    But, speaking from personal experience, it is best to trust God through it all and make it through. Things do get better eventually.

    For me, it has been 8 years since my first wife entered her affair, and I have now been in my second marriage for a little over a year. And, I can say that the worst time in my second marriage is pretty close to the best time in my first marriage. Some might say that’s just an effect of a selective memory.

    But, the thing to remember here is that my wife now is a very honorable, loving, sincere, honest, faithful, devoted, humble, wise woman. She has no cruelty in her heart. She can be emotional and express disappointment and anger, but she does not tear down people. She has never insulted me or threatened divorce. She has never lied to me. She has never cussed at me. She never tries to get me to compromise my beliefs and sin but rather we stand in harmony sharing the same values.

    I would never tell someone to end their marriage and pursue a new one based on the fact that my second marriage is entirely better than my first one. And one thing to keep in mind was that while my first wife was going through all her abuses and robberies and unfaithfulness and such, I was still praying for wisdom and studying and making every effort I could make to save the marriage if possible. And, there are good reasons that was the best thing to do.

    First, I had a problem within myself that was leading to the breakdown of the marriage, then I would have to expect that carrying that problem to another relationship would produce the same effects – a breakdown of another marriage. And, this is usually the case. Second marriages have much lower success rates than first marriages. And this is particularly true of the second marriage of the unfaithful partner. So, I needed to make sure if there were marriage skills I was severely lacking that I had addressed those issues before giving up and moving into a new relationship with someone else.

    Second, I needed to know that if I were to give up on the marriage that I would not have to live the rest of my life with regrets wondering whether the marriage could have been saved with a few identifiable changes or a little extra effort.

    Third, I did not want to go through life with the shame of having given up on my first marriage without that being absolutely right and necessary. How could I give myself to another person and give vows to another person knowing that my commitment to the vows was less than sincere and driven to be true?

    On the other hand, to be fair, I did not really owe my first wife that level of commitment after her affair, other than that I felt it was possible her affair might have been related to her mental illness, and if that was so, I felt honor bound to understand patiently and suffer through it with her rather than abandon her and judge her because of her unfaithfulness. But, later I began to understand that her unfaithfulness was really an unfaithfulness of character, a lack of integrity on her part. She simply was not and currently does not seem to be a very honorable woman, and was hard for me to accept or believe that for a very long time, but over time, I felt God finally calling me to take off the ring and accept that she would never be a faithful woman and that were I to invest my heart into her for the rest of my life the way i had been doing, her trip to hell would bring such unbearable grief into my heart, that I had to learn to let go and let my heart stop going after her. It was like Lot having to leave his wife after she had been turned into a pillar of salt. It is not a grief one can heal from quickly.

    Fourth, I had to stay with the marriage and try to save it because it would not be honorable for me to consider going into a relationship with someone else until I had healed well enough from the first relationship to be a good husband for someone else.

    And fifth, I felt it would be dishonorable to give up and go into a relationship with someone else until I knew in my heart that the first marriage was really over and that if my first wife were to repent and have a change of heart that I would be able to forgive her but tell her it is too late. I could not imagine falling in love with someone else and having my first wife come back and get caught into a situation where it was hard for me to decide whose heart to break.

    So, in this situation, it took years to heal, and after three years I took off the ring, and after about four years, I saw her with yet another man and for the first time did not feel any feeling of jealousy. I started to have feelings for one woman and we became close, but we both felt it was not an ideal relationship for marriage as she was Catholic and I was Protestant and our families did not approve of the relationship.

    But, God had been preparing Eileen and me for each other. Objectively, we could see our values and relationship with God were pretty much identical. Anyway, we grew close and our families both approved heartily, and the love in this marriage far overshadows anything in my first marriage.

    Now, to be fair, my in-laws in my first marriage were wonderful, and I still love them dearly and consider them to be my family. I never stopped loving my mother in law and my sisters in law or my father in law though he passed on a few years ago.

    But, they, too, are happy for Eileen and me and fully support our marriage, and I would love for them to meet her some day, though at this time, I really prefer to stay quite far from my ex-wife as we don’t really get along well.

    Anyway, I know this is long, but I hope it helps give you some encouragement to love and appreciate your husband or wife and your marriage and family.

    Thanks,
    Dan

  21. avatar Burung Koel says:

    Thanks for your thoughts, Dan. I’m glad your second marriage is working out. However I think your experience with your ex, and your adherence to selective religious dogma may have prevented you from appreciating the whole picture.

    Daughters who grow up without their fathers are much more likely to fall into premarital relationships with boys or men and are much more likely to become pregnant in their teens, and children of divorce are more likely to get sexually transmitted diseases.

    Evidence? In fact, the statistics show that teenage pregnancy is correlated with lack of sex education and limited availability of contraception. That’s why it’s much higher in your country than in comparable Western countries, because your supposed moral guardians in the churches stand in the way of information and access. Another interesting finding in recent years is that church promoted ‘celibacy pledges’ result in more pregnancies and a greater incidence of STDs, because teenagers are teenagers and will experiment anyway.

    This also provides a great incentive for the unfaithful spouse to go after someone who is rich knowing they can share the wealth of two partners. It is part of what makes my beloved country of the United States such a whorehouse of adultery and divorce.

    Rubbish. Women almost always end up financially worse off after a divorce.

    I felt God finally calling me to take off the ring

    Conveniently going against what God says through his son in the New Testament, from what I understand. Ah, it must be wonderful to have a personal God who can back up your life decisions in such a way.

    started to have feelings for one woman and we became close, but we both felt it was not an ideal relationship for marriage as she was Catholic and I was Protestant and our families did not approve of the relationship.

    But, God had been preparing Eileen and me for each other. Objectively, we could see our values and relationship with God were pretty much identical. Anyway, we grew close and our families both approved heartily, and the love in this marriage far overshadows anything in my first marriage.

    It’s easy when you get the hang of it, isn’t it?

  22. avatar Dan says:

    Thanks for your thoughts, Dan. I’m glad your second marriage is working out. However I think your experience with your ex, and your adherence to selective religious dogma may have prevented you from appreciating the whole picture.

    Thanks. Your statement oozes with sincerity, open mindedness, and humility.

    Evidence? In fact, the statistics show that teenage pregnancy is correlated with lack of sex education and limited availability of contraception.

    Sorry, but I always thought women and girls got pregnant because they had sex. Preventing pregnancy and AIDS with condoms is like forcing fools to pay taxes to pay for sending hungry lions through a city then arguing that the reason their children are being eaten alive is that they have failed to allow billions of taxes to be stolen from them for the purpose of supplying chiffon tissues to protect against the lions. The word for it is “stupid”.

    That’s why it’s much higher in your country than in comparable Western countries, because your supposed moral guardians in the churches stand in the way of information and access.

    Unlike Botswana where only 38% of the adult population have AIDS. Sorry, but America becomes like Botswana, it will not be for lack of Planned Parenthood’s attempt to promote sexual stupidity. Nor will it be for the lack of Planned Parenthood’s presence and commitment to geting people of non-white color to eradicate their own races through birth control and abortion.

    Rubbish. Women almost always end up financially worse off after a divorce.

    Rubbish? You’re talking to a person who had been hurt first hand by this so-called rubbish that you seem to pretend never happens.

    If you read deeper and checked deeper and expanded your knowledge base a little, you would find that your statement is true by and large for women who were faithful in their marriages and were abandoned and abused with their children by a coward and unfaithful man.

    Those women indeed need and deserve protection.

    But, so do men who suffer these things. You cannot solve the problem of injustice against one gender or race by taking it out on the innocent victims from the other gender or race.

    This is not an issue of men versus women. This is an issue of faithful against unfaithful, of robber against victim, of abuser against the abused.

    And currently America’s divorce courts get rich driving terror into the hearts of the faithful, threatening loss of children, of home, of finances, of future earnings, loss of credit, of loss of retirement and taxation on that loss, and then in the face of this great threat of injustice, they hold out their hands like a bunch of Mafia thugs demanding protection money.

    Who can say that injustice is not a very profitable business for them? The longer the injustice remains, the more the faithful can be robbed because they have nobody else to go to for protection.

    People are getting sick of it and are losing faith in our government and perhaps that is a good thing. However, some of them are taking matters into their own hands because our government won’t pursue justice. Nor will the people. Nor will the church. So, in desperation, many people take a wrong turn and give up all hope and decide that the best way out is death through suicide. Perhaps they do it to carry a message. Perhaps they do it to get out of the pain of injustice they have no hope of overcoming. And, sometimes they decide the best way to do it is to take people along with them.

    It’s a bad and wrong approach, and if you believe in God, you may also feel these people will go to hell for what they do. But, what about those who drive them to this insanity? Will God hold them innocent in the matter?

    We need family court justice. We need to stop stealing from the faithful whether they are men or women. If not, then perhaps rioting and violence may be the only other means of bringing about change. I would like to believe otherwise, but at this time I am unsure. I know people are starting to protest world wide over this issue, but many times I feel that the protest is overly misdirected into a man versus woman thing, and I wonder if this is because of an effort to divide and conquer.

    The war should always be just against unjust and never man against woman or race against other race.

  23. avatar Burung Koel says:

    Dan:

    You are mixing up many issues in your rage and incoherence. I only chose a couple of them to try and prick your hypocrisy. Please don’t conflate my arguments, set up straw ones or establish false dichotomies – all of which you are guilty of.

    It seems your biggest problem relates to a divorce when one partner has been ‘faithful’ and the other ‘unfaithful’. You would like to see the ‘unfaithful’ one punished, or perhaps not ‘advantaged’, as you see it.* This punishment should take both worldly and after life forms, from what you appear to say.

    OK, say we agree to punish the wrongdoer or ‘unfaithful’ one. What form of punishment is appropriate? Limiting access to children? Reducing alimony? A whole spectrum of different punishments from jail time leading up to stoning to death? I remind you that we live in the 21st century.

    *Disclaimer: I was ‘wronged’ by an unfaithful spouse, too. But I don’t see any need for revenge, especially when the other party suffers from an illness like depression, as yours (and mine) do. I pay maintenance happily, and ask after her welfare with genuine concern, and we share custody of children.

    Further disclaimer: I’m an atheist, and you claim to be a Christian.

  24. avatar Dan says:

    Burung,

    We clearly disagree, and although we may share some experience in having an unfaithful spouse who suffered from a mood disorder such as depression (your case) or bipolar (my case).

    But, the issue is not the disorder or whether one is happy or angry.

    You ask what punishment or reward it just. I would return the question and ask what punishment or reward should be received by the faithful spouse.

    You were not clear on whether it was you or your spouse who was the unfaithful party in the breakup of your marriage. I can assure you that had I been the one to play the whore on my wife and run off with another woman, or had abandoned her and our children, I might very well be willing to pay all kinds of support and put up with the sacrifice “like a man”. If that were the situation, I might regard such a judgment fully just and reasonable, and not only would I accept it willingly, but I might very well accept it with some element of joy because it would bring to me a feeling that I am not such a bad man after all for wrecking our marriage. It might very well help me purge my guilt.

    However, when I see so many women and men thrust out of their own homes so their spouse can shack up in the marriage bed, I am incensed.

    When I see the faithful struggling through the marriage to be good enough for their spouses, when I see them reading books on marriage, putting up with abuse, trying to learn all they can about their spouse’s disorders and how to deal with it in the very best way, when I see them giving their all to maintain the family in the very best way for the greatest good of the children, something in my heart causes me to love that individual and respect that individual very, very deeply.

    When I see a person in that position repeatedly insulted, treated with a total lack of appreciation, abused emotionally, and suffering from the unfaithfulness of a very selfish and narcissistic and unfaithful spouse, I find the cowardice of such behavior sickening.

    You asked what punishment would be appropriate. Stoning? Oh, yes, probably at least that. But, although the person may fully deserve a fast and painful execution and an eternity in hell, that is not the best way to bring about the best for the family or society, or else Jesus Christ would not have sacrificed His own life to keep people out of hell.

    But, since you ask about justice, do you think it is right to deprive a family from their right to live together and continue to enjoy the shared family assets in peace and in love just because one spouse wants to break the vows and play the whore?

    Do you feel the whore who rips and coward who rips to shreds the family should be rewarded for doing so?

    Do you think they should be allowed to join together with a co-conspirator in adultery and milk the family to their loss just to support their unfaithfulness?

    I don’t. And I think it is a spineless and unreasonable and stupid individual who does.

    What if someone did that to your daughter? What if some guy was unfaithful to your daughter, kicked her out on the street, gave her only a little time with her children, robbed her of income, possessions, and enslaved her to pay support to the other man and the woman who took him and the children away?

    If you want to talk about hypocrisy, think about those who would protect their children from this kind of injustice if possible but would fight against the laws that would provide that protection.

    And if you want to talk about hypocrisy, think about those who would commit such atrocities of unfaithfulness on their families and congratulate themselves with honor for accepting the consequences while demanding that the victims of the same atrocity suffer the same robbery merely for reason of being of one particular race or gender.

    That is what real hypocrisy is all about. It is not about your bigotry toward everyone who believed in God.

  25. avatar Burung Koel says:

    Dan:

    You continue with your stream of illogical connections. My only advice to you is to learn to read and listen to thers before you come to conclusions. You have missed a lot of things I have said. I think your anger and your consequent judgemental nature makes everything black and white for you.

    we may share some experience in having an unfaithful spouse who suffered from a mood disorder such as depression (your case) or bipolar (my case)

    I said: “But I don’t see any need for revenge, especially when the other party suffers from an illness like depression, as yours (and mine) do.” Therefore I never said my ex had a mood disorder. She is in fact bipolar.

    You were not clear on whether it was you or your spouse who was the unfaithful party in the breakup of your marriage.

    I said: “I was ‘wronged’ by an unfaithful spouse, too.” The same situation as you. Is this clear enough?

    I can assure you that had I been the one to play the whore on my wife and run off with another woman, or had abandoned her and our children, I might very well be willing to pay all kinds of support and put up with the sacrifice “like a man”.

    There’s a whole academic conference on gender relations in that statement.

    If that were the situation, I might regard such a judgment fully just and reasonable, and not only would I accept it willingly, but I might very well accept it with some element of joy because it would bring to me a feeling that I am not such a bad man after all for wrecking our marriage. It might very well help me purge my guilt.

    Alimony or maintenance is not about ‘guilt’, or ‘rewarding’ anyone. It’s about providing for children. Statistics, sadly, show the problem with post-divorce maintenance and poverty for women lies primarily with so-called ‘deadbeat dads’. You may want to read some of the concerns expressed by women earlier on in this thread, noting the financial risks associated with filing for divorce from a lousy husband.

    Guilt and revenge are such negative emotions, and I’m sorry that you still seem haunted by them. While I don’t know you, I would suggest that your religion might have something to do with this. I’m not bigoted towards religion per se, however I am unable to accept cant and hypocrisy from people who preach it.

    PS: And how does race come in? You first raised it and appear to have attached it spuriously to this discussion (twice).

  26. avatar Dan says:

    Burung, you continue to use adjectives and insults to describe my points rather than taking them up and proving them to be a “stream of illogical connections”.

    It seems you prefer to avoid the issues and have a strong dislike for those issues being brought up.

    I am sorry you were wronged by an unfaithful spouse, and I’m sorry she had bipolar. And I agree with you on the importance of providing for the children. I also share your dislike for so-called deadbeat dads.

    But, while there are deadbeat dads who should be punished and forced to pay, this is not the same as a dad who has given his all and continues to want to give his all but has it all taken away who is separated from his children against the will of the children and against all conventional wisdom and against his wishes and has been robbed of his family unjustly and must pay to a whore and her partner who gang up and fight for the children almost for the sole purpose of getting child support.

    As for my anger, have you ever tried to understand why? You seem to indicate you suffered the same thing. Perhaps you feel a sense of relief you are no longer on the hook to take care of your wayward ex-wife and you’re happy to give to take care of your wife.

    Here’s my situation. I worked my tail off to get my university degree and advance my career long before I got married. I studied several books on marriage and raising children. I studied psychology books from many sources. And, yet, I am absolutely a Christian with Christian values. We were married in a Christian church by a Christian pastor in a Christian ceremony with Christian vows and promises and very good, wise Christian marriage counseling before we got married.

    I was not a dead beat then, and I was not one since.

    My wife played the whore on our marriage.

    Those are angry words. They are judgmental words. They are upsetting words for some people. But they are just and honest words whether you like them or not.

    One can ask questions like, “What did you do to make her do this?” One could ask whether I stayed at the office too long. One could ask whether I neglected her needs somehow.

    Coddling the sinner and blaming the rest of the world for their sins has a word. It is called enabling. And it is one of the most dishonest and cowardly things a person can do.

    During a painful breakup, often the faithful spouse goes out of their way. Why? Because they’re trying to save the marriage at the last minute and make up for all the mistakes they made in the past? No. They go out of their way to save the marriage because they had been accustomed to working hard to save the marriage all along. It is part of their value system. They married and said their vows intending to keep them. They did not regard love as a mere feeling of happiness over getting what we want, but rather they regarded love as a commitment to make and to keep by making a choice to keep it and continuing to make that choice out of integrity, out of honor, out of sincerity, out of intentional good will and benevolence and responsibility knowing that the family needs each other. Namely the children.

    That is why the faithful stay and try to save the marriage. That is why they buy and read every book they can find. That is why they go to counselors. Alone. Week after week. Searching. Searching for every technique, every source of enlightenment, every thing that has any reasonable promise of improving the chances of saving the marriage. They watch videos. They seek out conferences. They get advice from others. They cry. They pray. They agonize and cry out to God. They beg God and wonder where He is, and they may give up on God and get upset and tell Him they are not going to believe in Him any longer if He does not come through. They question Him. They question His ability. They question His existence. They question the sincerity of His love, and they cry so very hard, gushing, unable to hold back their tears over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again.

    Then they come to their senses. They reconcile with God and pray again, but with more humility and submission. And, they hurt so very deeply.

    While they try to save their marriages, the unfaithful partner continues the affair. They devalue the faithful spouse. They call him or her worthless. Or they may turn around and get caught into a place where they feel they are torn between. And sometimes they may even regret and think of coming back but feel they cannot bear the shame or give up the affair partner. My wife told me she was afraid she would hurt the other man. And then she went to a resort with him and took our daughter along.

    The two start researching divorce law and begin gathering information from friends and books and they plan the way to get the best results for themselves. They learn how to use restraining orders against the faithful and innocent to get them out of the house and force them to stay out of the house. Having taken possession of the house, they take possession of the children as well. Having the house and the children, justice is not the issue. The “best interest of the children” is what the courts pretend to pursue.

    The faithful spouse is out. Perhaps at their parents’ home or somewhere else. They cannot concentrate on the job because every moment they work, they are wondering what is going on. They wonder, “What in the world am I doing here? I should be saving my family! This is my only chance. The longer I wait, the worse our chances for saving the marriage become.”

    If you don’t love your husband or your wife and they pull this kind of garbage on you, then you can let them go and be glad. But for some, it takes years to grieve through it and work through it. It may take years before some people can even get over the depression and anxiety and other problems that come through this kind of trauma.

    Of course, it’s easy just to say, “Rubbish…I never experienced that.” Well, if so, I say, “Rubbish to you for your experiences.” Maybe you feel you can boast of your ability to take it like a man. But, maybe your arrogance in the matter is more evidence of your lack of love or lack of understanding for what people really go through. Maybe you feel justified to marginalize the pain that some feel when they undergo this kind of rejection and abandonment and injustice and robbery.

    But, then take a good look at the children who have died from suicide and tell me they didn’t die. Take a look at those who fell prey to peer pressures and began to experiment with drugs and tell me they didn’t fry their brains out when they did. Tell me their experiences were unreal. Tell me it’s all rubbish.

    Tell me my friend in New Orleans did not suffer when she was kicked out of her house by her husband and forced to live with her mother for several years now. She waits. Tell another friend of mine who was kicked out and robbed of her children by a husband who pretended to be a Catholic involved in Catholic ministries that she did not suffer injustice. She fights these infernal, incompetent no-fault divorce laws even more intensely than I do. In fact, both women do.

    People try to make it a men’s rights issue and you see men protesting openly. But, I don’t feel any pity for the man who has done something like this to his wife and has had to suffer the consequences. I feel happy that justice was done.

    What I do hate with all my heart is the insensitivity of those who can look someone straight in the eyes who has suffered real injustice and tell that person in front of everyone else that their expressions of pain and injustice and their desires to correct this stupidity is nothing but empty, illogical rage based on tales of history that are nothing but rubbish. If you do this, you might as well tell a black lady or gentleman that the slavery of the south was nothing but a fabrication of a bunch of lying N-words. If you do this, you may as well go to the Jew and tell him he should get over his problem with the Nazis because they never really killed six million Jews during WWII. Tell the Arminians they never were violated by the people of Turkey. Or tell the people there never was an Inquisition, that Christians were never crucified and torched along the roads by Nero, and that their pain and their rage is nothing but empty, foundationless anger.

    If you feel people do not suffer from divorce to the extent I share with you here, and if you are truly a man who loves statistics and doesn’t just use corrupt ones that satisfy your goals, then take a look at the statistics regarding the greatest cause of suicide among the military men of the United States. It isn’t post traumatic stress disorder. It is not being blown apart by a mine and left with arms and legs and eyes missing. It is not the night terrors that come back to haunt the person who suffered in war years later. The second greatest cause of suicide for military men is nothing compared to the first cause and the greatest cause is the loss of relationships — and by far the majority of that is the loss of a marriage.

    Here in America, a man could fight for his country, risk life, and give himself in the ultimate expression of love and honor and return to find his wife in bed with another man.

    Here in America, when that happens, the man walks away with nothing. The woman keeps the children. She keeps the house. With the other man. And, they get to milk him of half of his military pension and much of his salary so that the children can live in the whorehouse of adultery with the unfaithful couple who model this kind of cowardice and illegitimate behavior.

    And, at the bottom of it is the very cowardly and reprehensible character of every American who ever proposed, supported, used, voted for, or refused to fight against it.

    Go tell the service man who lost his wife and children this way that this is nothing but rubbish. Go tell them. Go to their meetings. Go to their protests. If you can find any.

    Most of the time, people so battered by this cowardice are too burned out and hurt and left without hope or strength to fight. They spent all their strength to fight on saving the marriage and providing for the very best well being of their children and family.

    So, putting aside the anger and vengeance and such for a moment, let’s focus on what is best for the children and how they need to be provided for.

    My wife fought me into the ground financially to where I had nothing left to fight with. Before this time, we had two houses — a rental house and the house we lived in. I was the breadwinner of the family. I had earned my degree in applied mathematics several years before and had studied computer science at the graduate level at Stanford University. I worked for NASA, Ingres, Oracle, and PeopleSoft in very technical positions and at the time our marriage broke up, I was working as a Director of Information Technology and Operations and Chief Systems Architect for an Internet startup.

    If we wanted a car, we could afford to buy one cash, as I bought my wife a Lincoln Continental and paid cash for it. A couple years before we had bought a Lexus cash and we still had our little red sports car. We were not rich, but we were not poor either. We made frequent trips back to Indonesia to see her family and loved doing so. I had made the effort to learn her language and I can communicate fairly comfortably in Indonesian to this day as can our daughter. Twice I seriously considered working in Indonesia. Once, for a bank called Bank Danamon, and once for Oracle.

    Then one day I used VNC to get into my computer at home to get a file I needed for work and saw on the screen a conversation my wife was having with another man about a fling. I froze and could not believe what I was seeing. I wanted to believe I must have stumbled across something that wasn’t what it seemed to be. But sadly, when I went home from the office, I asked my wife and she confessed it was true. She said the affair was over and the guy was a real jerk and she regretted what she did. She was happy I found out and that I would forgive her for this.

    But then a couple months later, our daughter came to me and said, “Daddy, there is another man.” I asked if his name was Stanley, and she said, “No, it is Bruno”. This would be the affair that would break up our family.

    But, to be fair to Bruno, initially he was unaware my wife was not single. He had met her at a disco, and he had been divorced as well. It wasn’t until after the affair had been going on that he saw our daughter and wondered who this little girl was.

    There really is no reason to go further into any of this other than to say that there are multiple ways of looking at this situation and how to deal with it. One can ask whether the unfaithful person should be stoned. What would that do to society or to the children? Should we just let the unfaithful go knowing we cannot keep them and if we tried, wouldn’t it be like keeping a caged animal? I am sure it would.

    But, marriage is not meant to be a casual relationship. And if a person is committed only as long as they are happy and getting what they want, then that is not really a commitment to the marriage. It is only a commitment to having happiness and fulfillment. Perhaps some feel there is nothing wrong with that. Surely there is nothing wrong with happiness and fulfillment.

    But, if marriage is real, if it is a real commitment to the marriage, to the family, to the continuation of faithfulness and such, then couples should be permitted to enter into a form of marriage the reflects that commitment.

    In other words, if you want a so-called marriage that is not binding at all, then you have the option of shacking up, if that is consistent with your beliefs and values and your goals. You can get what you want with no strings attached, if that is what you want and feel is right.

    But, just because some people feel that way is no reason to deny other people the right to enter into a relationship that is truly binding.

    My feeling is that a couple should have the right to bring such a commitment to each other in love. My belief is that one spouse should be able to present a truly binding agreement to the other spouse and say, “No matter what happens, whether sickness or health, wealth or poverty, happiness or unhappiness, I will not deprive this family of its right to live together in love continuing to enjoy the shared family assets for reason of any unfaithfulness on my part.”

    Really, truth is this is what marriage is all about. It is about having the spine and sincerity to make a promise like the wedding vows and be willing to be held accountable to keep them and honor them.

    If a man or a woman is unwilling to offer such a binding commitment, then they’re really lying when they pretend to give the wedding vows. If they’re unwilling to be responsible for the vows they make, if they’re willing to rob the family of this right, then they’re lying if they give their word under such a condition.

    When a couple marries their vows should be so firm as if to grant the Lord every right to send them to the worst place of hell for all eternity if they choose to turn away and abandon their wedding vows. After all, if they are unfaithful and set up such an example of rewarding unfaithfulness to their children. then they’re already leading their children toward hell, so why should they feel entitled to do that without going to hell themselves?

    But, then this is probably “disjointed”, “illogical”, “disconnected”, “anger-driven”, “narrow-minded”, or some other liberal cliche or adjective for those who don’t like to address issues straight on. But, I feel people should avoid saying they’re commited to marriage if all they’re really committed to is indulging their own passions and lust for as long as they can get some good feeling from it.

  27. avatar Burung Koel says:

    Hi Dan

    Just a couple of things:

    – I understand your anger. I went through the same thing myself.

    – I hope this process has been cathartic for you. It does help to get these things out. I also appreciate your honesty.

    If you do this, you may as well go to the Jew and tell him he should get over his problem with the Nazis because they never really killed six million Jews during WWII.

    I think we need to invoke Godwin’s Law at this point. PS: If you don’t know what it is, look it up.

  28. avatar Dan says:

    Hi Burung,

    I appreciate your feeling that you understand my anger having gone through an experience that shares some of the same characteristics and that you could appreciate the cathartic nature of going through a process of sharing like this. I know my writings were long and usually that is a strong indication that some heavy catharsis is taking place.

    I also appreciate what you say about Godwin’s Law of looking things up.

    But I feel part of the anger and frustration I have felt is in seeing people in crisis while others make great efforts to side step, divert, or invalidate either the feelings or issues involved by labeling their thoughts with adjectives without substantiation.

    Many times you spoke of my writing as though it were akin to rantings of an angry person without coherent thoughts, blind to other realities and such. You also refered to my writing as illogical.

    Rather than attempt to throw lofty, educated sounding labels or adjectives at a person or his or her writing, I feel a more honest approach would be to do the kind of cutting and pasting you do, but bring out the rules of logic violated specifically. Instead of labeling it illogical, say, “B does not follow from A as you say it does”, or “you have assumed the thing you are attempting to prove.”

    By throwing labels and adjectives at a person or his writing, you give the impression that there is a sensitive issue you are trying to avoid or a truth you are trying to avoid. It appears that you desire strongly not to repeat what the person is said. And to the person you are addressing your argument, it appears you have not really read or understood what they are saying.

    It is one thing to say you understand and another thing to show you understand. You said you went through the same thing I did. A divorce. A wife with bipolar. An unfair wife. Losses of family, children, etc. And, that tends to draw people together by the fact that we probably suffered many of the same pains. But, people no two people experience exactly the same thing or process near same experiences in the same way. Some people who experience what we did would be happy to be out of the relationship free from bondage to a person who is hard, abusive, unreasonable, unfair, dishonest, unfaithful, and degrading to everyone around them. And, it would be entirely reasonable for a person to feel that way and not be hurt by the breakup of a marriage with such a person.

    But, some of us take it really hard. Some take years to recover. Some never recover.
    And part of it depends on how much a person has invested into that relationship and what they stand to lose.

    For you, as an atheist, people die and get buried in the ground and that is the end of it if I understand the way atheists see things. If I understand correctly, the atheist usually believes in neither heaven nor hell and that our existence came about through evolutionary processes and not by the creation of an all-knowing, loving, wise, all-powerful God who would hold us accountable for breaking vows, sinning, telling lies, stealing, or anything else. The foundational reasons behind morality may seem more altruistic in a sense because the atheist may view himself working from a desire for personal honor and general well-being to society rather than on a personal reward of heaven and hell. And some atheists would view Christians as being the opposite. In truth, that is the case much of the time, but for Christians that get the real message behind Christianity, at least the way this one guy sees it, the Christian view of morality creates a paradigm that forces understanding of it to take a different path from that which may appear obvious on the surface, for the sinner is driven by selfishness while the saint is saved from sin and selfishness, and therefore if a person is driven only by fear of heaven and hell and personal gain or loss, the person is driven selfishly and therefore cannot truly be saved from sin or the penalty of it. The person is therefore self-justifying, self-rationalizing, self-defending, self-serving, and so on, and the salvation of the soul comes from being freed from such things.

    But, how can that ever happen? What would drive a person to become unselfish? Is it even possible? Well, one belief is that the person has to be driven to despair and hopelessness in every form that selfishness takes and must surrender selfishness and sin to be saved. But, we have already sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and just as a murderer does not have to commit a million killings to be a murderer, once we have sinned, we are guilty. Therefore, if God cannot lie or sin, then we must stand before an infinite God guilty of taking His blessing of life and using it to offend Him and others and bring insult to His right to rule righteously and benevolently all for the sake of indulging ourselves. If God forgives it with no change and end to selfishness, then He does nothing but buy us a license to sin without consequence, and if He does so to HIs own loss and to the loss of the universe, this would be a statement that He loves sin so dearly that He would sacrifice His only Son to make people free to sin all they want without consequence. And some people see Christianity this way. I think it is a faulty view.

    The view I have regarding the moral foundation for Christianity is that we despair of all hope in ourselves. Not that we are unable to do right or that we are unable to choose benevolently at heart, but rather that we’re selfish at heart by choice and no matter how we try to subdue our sin and hide it, somehow it will always come out and expose the sin that is in our hearts. The change has to happen in the heart. We have to giving ourselves unfaithfully to other gods and lords who would demand obedience from us and demand disobedience to God. We have to deny those lords in our life that would bully us, abuse us, mock us, torment us, bribe us, swindle us and stop giving ourselves to them and give ourselves to God instead. We need to trust that God’s grace is sufficient to save us from our sin and that Jesus Christ’s death on the cross was sufficient and necessary to pay for the sins we had already committed, that is the price is paid. But we have to receive this gift of salvation through faith in Christ which requires repentance, admitting wrong to God, letting go of our justifications for sin, and turning away from sin.

    So, based on this mindset, when I see a person who is living in adultery, I see a person going to hell and rightfully so, and I don’t want them to go there.

    When I see a person going to hell, I see a person taking others to hell with them by their example. Not by force, but by persuasion and bad example. When I think of a curse being placed upon someone, I see a sinner as a defenseless person. I see natural curses that take place by natural causes. I see intentional curses that are both spiritual involving fallen angels or demons, but I also see curses that take natural forms such as the ill-will between people, anger, revenge, and such.

    When I think of surrender to God, I think of surrender not so much the personification of justice, benevolence or goodness, wisdom, knowledge, and power, but rather to the person who would poorly be described as though in an unclear glass by our understanding of those qualities. The reason I say this is that our understanding of benevolence is so limited as human beings that it is bound to be wrong to a large extent causing us to view God incorrectly. Some would say we must therefore depend on God’s Word, but people tell us God’s Word is different things–the Bible, the Koran, the Book of Mormon, and the list goes on and on. As a Christian, of course, I believe the Word of God is the Bible. Others disagree. And we have been given freedom to agree or disagree, but in the end, there is objective truth, and just as a person who falls off a cliff does not have to believe in gravity to be crushed on the rocks below, we do not have to believe correctly to be affected by the consequences of believing wrong.

    So, we can hedge our bets. We can say, what if they’re wrong and I’m right, and then turn the question around the other way. It would seem to say if you’re right and I’m wrong, after we’re dead we’ll both be buried and neither of us would have any improvement or loss from what we believe. However, if you as an atheist are wrong and I am right, then you will go to hell and I will go to heaven.

    That’s one view, but the obvious counter to that is what if the Muslim is right and I’m wrong, or what if the Hare Krishna is right and I’m wrong, and so on.

    In the end, the person who wins is not necessarily the one who can form arguments to persuade others to believe as they do or persuade them to believe they cannot win and therefore should not bother. After all one can run an infinite line of “how do you knows” until the other person runs out of answers and use that as a basis to prove that nothing can be proved. Of course that is a logical self-contradiction in and of itself, but it is commonly used with greatly unfounded hubris by many people.

    In the end, the important thing is what is real.

    Dan

  29. avatar Burung Koel says:

    I also appreciate what you say about Godwin’s Law of looking things up.

    I meant for you to look up “Godwin’s Law”.

    It could have saved you all that typing.

  30. avatar Dan says:

    I also appreciate what you say about Godwin’s Law of looking things up.

    I meant for you to look up “Godwin’s Law”.

    It could have saved you all that typing.

    Godwin’s law does not prove Hitler never existed.

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