08-06-2012, 11:36 PM
Join Date: Jul 2012
| | Re: Separation and making a list of expectations
Dobson’s sample letter to the spouse that feels trapped and wants out
The sample letter and thoughts in blue below (I changed it to fit your circumstance) is the best letter that I have ever seen in regards to a spouse that just is determined that they are trapped and want out
The words in black are from Dr. Dobson’s book, Love Must Be Tough, Hope for a marriage in crises”
Let the Trapped Partner Out
Hope for dying marriages is likely to be found in the reconstruction of respect between warring husbands and wives.
Opening the Cage Door
Perhaps it is now apparent where the present line of reasoning is leading us. If there is hope for dying marriages, and I certainly believe there is, then it is likely to be found in the reconstruction of respect between warring husbands and wives. That requires the vulnerable spouse to open the cage door and let the trapped partner out! All the techniques of containment must end immediately, including manipulative grief, anger, guilt and appeasement. Begging, pleading, crying, hand-wringing and playing the role of the doormat are equally destructive.
There may be a time and place for strong feelings to be expressed, and there may be an occasion for quiet tolerance. But these responses must not be used as persuasive devices to hold the drifting partner against his or her will.
"John [or Diane], I've been through some very tough moments since you decided that we should seperate. My love for you is so profound that I just couldn't face the possibility of life without you. To a person like me, who expected to married to you for life and to remain committed for life, it is a severe shock to see our relationship begin to unravel. Nevertheless, I have done some intense soul-searching, and I now realize that I have been attempting to hold you against your will. That simply can't be done.
As I reflect on our courtship and early years together, I'm reminded that you married me of your own free choice. I did not blackmail you or twist your arm or offer you a bribe. It was a decision you made without pressure from me. Now you say you want to seperate, and obviously, I have to let you go. I'm aware that I can no more force you to stay today than I could have made you marry me. You are free to go. If you never call me again, then I will accept your decision.
I admit that this entire experience has been painful, but I'm going to make it. The Lord has been with me thus far and He'll go with me in the future. You and I had some wonderful times together, John. I'll never forget the memories that we shared. I will pray for you and trust that God will guide you in the years ahead."
Exerpt originally taken from James Dobson's book, Love Must Be Tough (copyright © 1983, 2007 by James Dobson, Inc.), published by Tyndale House Publishers.