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Husband Wants a Divorce

Husband Wants a Divorce


Dear Rachel,

My husband has decided he wants a divorce. Should I try and persuade him to stay? Or do I let him go because it is obviously what he wants?

I want to stay married more than anything else, I just don't want to be egotistical. Is it right to try and force him to stay? On one hand I feel that we have a spiritual bond because of our marriage and children and I have an obligation to try and persuade him not to go. On the other hand is it right for me to do that if he feels caged?

The last problem is that I am pregnant, this of course is not a problem in itself, it is a blessing in every circumstance, but I haven't told him yet as I have only just found out. If I tell him will it be like a means of forcing him?


Dear Confused,

A marriage is a very precious thing. It is also a commitment to one another. In today's "disposable" times, when everything seems to be disposable and replaceable, perhaps some of the genuine values and attitudes towards marriage have unfortunately fallen by the way side. Divorce is not a light step and is really only the absolute last resort, when every other means has been tried and for some reason the relationship can't be worked out. We are told that when a couple divorces, the altar in the Temple sheds tears and is pained over this ripping up of what is so precious and important. This is true for all marriages, and becomes increasingly relevant for marriages where there are children involved, children who will be affected by the break-up in major ways, children who will feel like their lives will be falling apart with a divorce.

So, to answer your question, yes, you must do everything in your power to prevent a divorce. This would be true even if you had some legitimate complaints against your spouse, and all the more so, from what you write, considering that you really want to remain married more than anything. This is all the more true since you have a family with children and a new one now on the way.

I want to impress upon you how serious a step it is to divorce. All marriages have ups and downs. All marriages have closer times and more distant ones. The point is to work through these periods and try to create an even deeper bond.

It is difficult for me to write any practical advice without knowing more about why your husband wants to divorce. Why does he feel caged in the marriage? Why is he unsatisfied? Can you do anything to alleviate the situation? Have you gone to any therapy? Do you speak openly with one another? Are there other problems? Working towards greater happiness or fulfillment for both of you would be going in the right direction, but severing your marital bond would only be a last resort, after all other efforts are exhausted.

Yes, I do think that you should be letting him know that you are pregnant and the life of another child is at stake with any kind of move you make. I don't think that doing whatever is in your power to try to keep your marriage intact would be is "forcing" him or caging him in. It is the least you can do for your marriage, for your children and for your spouse and for yourself.

Much hatzlacha making your marriage a better one and a more lasting one.


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Discussion (22)
April 13, 2016
I was with a serial cheater for 15 years(married for 10). While I don't have children and we are now divorced .. if you "force" him to stay (which you can't, btw... no one can "force" someone to stay...) but if you do keep him... expect a marriage FILLED at some point with infidelity.

You will spend your time spying on him, checking to see if cell phones /computer codes are locked or password protected. In short .. you will be living with a serial cheater - is that what you want? Because ultimately .. he will cheat. THEN what do you have?

You are not what he wants - admit it. And then move on and cut him loose. Otherwise, you will grow to absolutely HATE each other and his cheating ways.
November 13, 2012
why on earth would you want to be with a man who doesn't want you? This makes no sense whatsoever! He doesn't want you anymore! Your wanting and begging him to stay isn't going to change that!

Trust me, my husband left me, went and moved in with another woman, took care of her, bought her a nice furniture set, but had our home furnished with hand me downs.

He came back home. He didn't want to, but she didn't want him anymore. Well, to this day, he tells me, "This time when I leave I AM NOT coming back."

It seemed to be good for a while. But It was only good as long as I was making him comfortable and pretending as though he hadn't done anything.

These men don't love you. They love what you do for them. And I can guarantee you probably have no serious life ofyour own and everything revolves around your spouse, children and home.

Time to grow and move on!
October 21, 2012
My husband want a divorce, but I don't. We have one child together that we planned and I have two and he also has two. I love this man so much. He say he loves me but not in love any more. I been praying everyday. He move out and I'm just sad and hurt. What to do?
phenix city, al
March 17, 2012
Spiritual marriage for the love of Judaism
7 years ago my family discovered that we have anusim roots unfortunately I failed to return to Judaism at the time and married a non Jew who I had a child with. As time goes by I realize that my husband and I are on different frequencies and we do not share a spiritual connection because my soul still cries out for Judaism while he seems to reject every aspect of it.I feel terribly lost and do not know how to raise my child with Jewish values while I'm still in such a relationship that prevents our spiritual growth and well being.
Salome the Marrano
ny , ny
March 15, 2012
very hurt.
my husband can be very verbally abusive. he had been worse lately and he and his 21yr old daughter were (rearranging his clothes). he had had our cable d.c'd and my 12yr old was watching tv. i called police after he pulled bedroom computer off and his daughter pulled me backwards into the floor. i was taken to jail and charged with2 counts of domestic assault. he had been seeing his exwife and calling her. now i dont trust him at all. his ex and daughter are angry he has not left me. can u help me. i dont want my son damaged. while i was in jail he took all electronics out of home and removed my son's 4wheeler. i feel lost now.
oneida, tn, usa
January 22, 2012
is it time for me to move on
my husband and i got married ago 2010. Before that we had been together for 4yrs. our relationship as boyfriend& girlfriend we didn't have major problems.but once we got married seems like we argued more,not because of jealousy or trust it was more because we wanted more time for each other but one of us would have things to do.6months after being married he decided that he wants the divorce.we have been separated for 9months now i try to make things work but i feel as if i try enough. I dont want the divorce but its what i need in order to move on because he said he has.however he hasn't started the divorce papers.we had bought something on credit together but he ended up paying for it and blames me for his unstable economic problem.I'm not sure if i should pay the half i was suppose to pay to him and start the divorce process myself, or am i suppose to wait?my mind is telling my one thing but my heart is telling me different.i dnt want my hope to be on a thin piece of ice.
los angeles, CA
January 1, 2012
A pregnant woman
I can relate to the post because I faced such myself and am still facing it.

My husband's parents had an ugly divorce and I failed to realize how it scarred him. Early in the marriage, he started to leave. I chased after and told him he was making a mistake. What he did not know was I had just found out I was pregnant. He was still going to leave and I finally blurted it out.

Months later, he was having trouble at work and he got scared when we had some problems. Instead of talking about things, he shut down and he told me he wanted a divorce. I cannot tell you how that shattered my world, but I didn't give up. I talked to him and he calmed down. We moved on, but I will admit the things he said continue to haunt me. He just cannot handle strife at home and I have to teach him how to handle it, or I will lose him. He's a good man, just unable to see the pain he can cause.

Still, I know it is worth it to keep going, as I believe in him and I believe in us.
A pregnant woman
Jewish Community, USA
December 18, 2011
to anonymus
I would have left and prayed im not pregnant... I am so sorry, but if he absolutely does not want to acknowledge you and he is insulting your children.. I am afraid to think about what would come next. good luck no matter what you decide, but under these circumstances I would put MY children as a priority
December 14, 2011
husband wants a divorce over his kids
I got married to a guy who is 13 years older than me and has got 2 kids a boy 12 and a girl 16.i have 2 kids of my own a boy 8 and a girl 9 in the begging it was fine he was fair and I was firm but lately he is so unfair and accusing me of not liking his kids we argue constantly over his kids he is always taking their side over mine and standing me down for them and when ever we have an argument he wants a divorce, he says the worst things to me, and insults my kids I don't do things like that to his kids, I'm at this stage were I'm to scared to tell him if his kids did wrong because we are goiing to end up arguing and he is going to say things that hurt me and my kids,we were trying for a baby and I fell pregnant and it seems as if things have just gotten worse. Please can someone help me ? He does not want to go for councilling either because he says that he doesn't need someone to tell him what's wrong in his marridge
cape town, south africa
September 2, 2011
Talking tour Ex
Talking to ur ex can badly hurt yor partner. Once a mirror has broken, even if you might fix it, the image on the reflection after the repair wouldn't be the same again. That is how ur partner will look at you, it takes time to remedy the situation if not beyond repair. But what i trully believe in, is that when one loves you, their heart becomes too big to forgive you, if they dont forgive, then you were never meant to be. Nomatter how big the damage is, the bird will always fly to his nest.