Question (from Facebook community): “How can I make sure I don’t repeat my mistakes?”
Whether you’re still married and trying to rebuild your marriage or you are separated or divorced and looking toward your future, there is emotional work you can do on yourself to attempt to prevent repeating your relational mistakes.
1. Do I have any childhood baggage that I still haven’t worked through? If so, what? How can I take steps now to process all of it?
2. Why did I choose the person I chose to marry? What did I love about him?
3. Did I see any red flags before we got married? If so, why did I choose to ignore them and push past them?
4. What did my husband do to me or how did my husband act that I now consider to be unacceptable behavior?
5. What did I do to my husband or how did I act that I now consider to be unacceptable behavior? (It goes both way, girls; we are not sinless.)
6. What are some ways that I can actively work on changing my flaws?
7. What did my husband do well in our marriage? Did I affirm that?
8. What did I do well in our marriage? What are some characteristics I want to enhance?
9. What steps can I be taking now to heal where I am right now? (Counseling, a recovery group, finding a mentor, etc.)
10. Have I fully grieved the losses (of either how I thought my marriage was going to turn out or the death of my marriage)?
11. Am I letting others in to my life to speak to me truthfully about my words, actions and thought life?
12. Based on Scripture, what I’ve learned from church, and the wise counsel around me, what do I believe are God’s next steps of healing for me?
I think we all know by now that there are no guarantees in life but asking yourself these questions, and answering them honestly, is a good place to start. I would even suggest inviting a trusted friend, mentor or counselor to help you process the answers to these questions, and to bravely invite feedback.
Offer yourself tons of grace. Turning something around takes time. Grieving takes time. Healing takes time. But God wants to bring you to a place of wholeness and healing, so this is something you can wait for with solid hope, even if it doesn’t look like what you expect.
We wait in hope for the LORD; He is our help and our shield. -Psalm 33:20-
Very good questions and thank you for sharing. What are your thoughts personally and scripturally on reconciling after divorce. I know he must have to show some kind of change and a commitment to continuing with those changes. Of course not trying for the sole purpose of the children, but for allowing God to peice something back together that He holds so dearly to His heart. What are your thoughts or suggestions?
Your questions continue to lead me to a deeper understanding and love for myself and I thank you for that.
KS, I’m not sure I have a whole post in me on this subject, but I would say this:
God can do anything.
If he wants you and your ex-spouse to be together, it can totally happen.
I would look at it as a starting over. As if you two are beginning a new relationship, and I would start with dating. And I would ask myself all the questions that I would ask if dating someone brandnew (http://elisabethcorcoran.blogspot.com/2012/08/red-flags.html).
Hope this helps a bit. Thanks for reading!
At this point in time I can’t even imagine WANTING to date, EVER…but I WILL be thinking over these questions with the objective of learning more about myself … over the 22 years of my marriage I know I changed and responded in some ways that were not healthy and if there is to be even the possibility of another relationship, I need to look at these things. THANK YOU.