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Should I Stay or Leave this Marriage or “When Is Enough Enough?”

Allan Schwartz, LCSW, Ph.D. was in private practice for more than thirty years. He is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the states ...Read More

Discussion:

When there are problems in a marriage everyone must ask themselves the difficult question of "when is it over and time to divorce?" Different people have different ways to answer this question. Some will delay divorce based on the idea that it is better for the children to stay together until they are grown and out of the house. Others may decide to stay together for religious reasons. Still others may decide that the financial strains created by divorce might be too much to tolerate. For others, fears of abandonment, endless and unrealistic hope for reconciliation and willingness to tolerate lots of abuse, may keep them together in an unhappy marriage.

But, is there not a time when "enough is enough?"

In my opinion, the wife who wrote the comment is an example of "enough is enough." In fact, it is my opinion that "enough was enough" a long time ago. Why do I say this?

It is not enough that this husband had extramarital sex ten years ago when he had two small children, but he:

1. had extramarital sex with a prostitute, exposing himself and his wife to sexually transmitted diseases,

2. Brought the prostitute to his home and had sex in his and his wife’s marital bed.

3. Was found in bed with a prostitute when his wife and small children returned home and at a time when he must have known that risk was real.

4. Denied his wife sexual pleasure within the boundaries of their marriage.

5. Continued to commit these despicable acts long after they had gone to marriage counseling and long after he promised to stop.

In every way, this man demonstrated his utter and total contempt for his wife, children and the institution of marriage.

It seems to me that this is a woman who could have and should have ended this marriage long ago.

The past is gone and done with but, from this point onward, she can take the assertive and necessary steps to end this relationship to a man who has repeatedly proven himself to be utterly unworthy as a husband and father.

What are your opinions about this and the concept of "enough is enough?"

Allan N. Schwartz, PhD

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