It was only a few weeks ago that I was ready to blog about Sandra Bullock's interview with Barbara Walters prior to the Oscars. I was so moved by the way she spoke of her relationship with her husband. How she has grown and become better and stronger because, as she said, "He's got my back". And I could totally relate because that's how I feel my relationship with Rod is. I am so fully accepted by him, I have been free to be who I am. And I have grown so much in the past fourteen years.
So to hear how betrayed she has been was shocking. I just can't imagine what she is going through right now. It's like the rock she has been standing on has been yanked out from under her. Not only that, but she likely can't believe how she thought he was a rock all this time, and she will question all the good she experienced with him: was it real?
When I hear things like this, my heart aches. What went wrong? Why do men turn to mistresses and pornography and "love" affairs? Why do sexual addictions begin? Is there any hope for healing and lasting change once a pattern like this begins? How is our society contributing to this problem? What is the message to boys and men? What is it they are looking for and not getting?
When I hear things like this, I ache for women. How does a woman rebuild her life? How will she recover from this emotional wounding at the core of her being--this abandonment and betrayal of trust and intimacy? Is there any hope for healing or reconciliation in the relationship? Is there something in the way our society thinks--in the way it approaches relationships between men and women--that contributes to breakdowns in marriages? What is the message to women and girls? Are women being set up for broken marriages by how they view themselves, choose a partner, or what they expect of themselves or their mate?
These kinds of stories bring me to realize what a sacred trust I've been given, to be in a relationship where I am to know and be known in an intimate way. Where I have a responsibility to build into and protect my man's sense of strength and vulnerability. And he has the responsibility to affirm the beauty of who I am and give his strength to protect and love me. And we are each uniquely created and a gift to each other. How many times I take that gift for granted. How long I can go without truly connecting on an emotional level in the busyness of life. How easy it is to tune into some "virtual reality" or "connect" on facebook with some distant acquaintance and not pay attention to the soul of the one in my own house.
If you are recovering and trying to rebuild after a devastating divorce, I ache with you. If you are married and find yourself drifting, I encourage you to take stock and commit to being present in your relationship, being grateful for your spouse, and finding one way each day to communicate your love and respect in a fresh way. It is a challenge, but the rewards are great. And if you're not yet in a committed relationship yet, I encourage you to find ways to love and appreciate yourself. To really know yourself, and to grow in your relational skills.
This has been a rather long post, and perhaps a bit deep for such a sunny warm spring day. Thanks for sticking with me.
(Praying for you, Sandra...)