Is divorce an option? - Page 4 - Mothering Forums

View Poll Results: Is divorce an option when you're having problems in your marriage?
Yes 164 49.10%
No 170 50.90%
Voters: 334. You may not vote on this poll

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#91 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 02:22 PM
 
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When I think of all the posters who have been so shocked that someone on an AP board could ever spank their child; could ever believe it was OK to let a toddler CIO; or were in disbelief over the number of members who own SUVs...I'd like them to see this thread. Keeping someone in your life who has raped your child is probably the most anti-AP thing I've ever heard. It's not even mainstream. It's a whole new level.

What about the child's FEELINGS? Do those matter at all? How does a parent explain to her child that she is keeping the rapist in her life?
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#92 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 02:31 PM
 
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abac: You said "seeing as how he'd probably be in prison if he did something horrible, monitored visitation in a prison". What makes you think that?

People get slapped on the hand for child abuse, including sexual abuse, every day. There's absolutely no assurance that the courts would do anything significant about the hypothetical case posed in this thread. We had a judge here (BC) about 10 years ago, who commented during sentencing for a "sexual touching" case that the offender couldn't really be blamed because his 3-year-old victim had been "sexually provocative". As far as I'm concerned, counting on the courts to protect your children is a total abdication of parental responsibility - because the courts cannot be relied on to do so.

Anyway...I agree with gethane. What people say who haven't been through any of these things is one thing...what they do once something like this has happened is another. I remember people telling me when I got married that I shouldn't be so nervous, because I could "always get a divorce if things don't work out". And, I remember telling them, absolutely sincerely, that I wouldn't even be getting married if I thought that way. But, I was divorced, nonetheless.

What a lot of posters who are citing hypotheticals seem to overlook is that marriage is a two-way street. You're talking about keeping a commitment to maintaining something that the other party has already destroyed. When only one party to a marriage is trying to keep the marriage alive, they're just flogging a corpse. Marriage takes two.

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#93 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 02:35 PM
 
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: I voted "no" by mistake.

Anyway, I really could not believe how many people chose no. The question was not "Is divorce an option you're comfortable with?" It was just "Is it an option?" Nobody is asking if you think that it's ideal. I am with Greaseball 100%. There is ABSOLUTELY NO ROOM within AP or loving mainstream parenting for parents who would refuse to protect their kids from physical/emotional/sexual trauma. When someone hurts you or your child, you cut them off like a sick limb, before they can poison your whole being. I understand some of you are driven by altruism, but there's no greater good than protecting your children and yourself.
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#94 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 02:43 PM
 
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Storm - That happens a lot more often; it's standard in court cases to blame the victim, no matter how young she is.

I wonder how many of our dh's would still be committed to us if they caught us molesting our children?

Now, about other divorce stuff...my dad is looking at being divorced for the second time. He won't stop cheating on his wife. He cheated on my mom 4 times and they split up when I was three. He's cheated on his second wife twice that we know of, so they are legally separated because in their small redneck town apparently divorce means social ostracization. So they have a legal separation but still live together, because my stepmom needs what he can provide around the house - money, work, etc. He lives in the basement. How weird is that?

Their youngest child is almost 16 and they are planning to divorce legally when she moves out. I don't get the point of waiting at all - it's not like she doesn't know. I think my stepmom deserves to be with a man who loves and respects her.

Now, I have a friend who has been married for 20 years but does not live with her husband. She says they just have very different lifestyles and it doesn't work for them to share a house. So they each have their own houses, and then they own one other house together to hang out in. They love each other and spend a lot of time together; they just maintain separate residences. So it can work that way too...
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#95 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 02:45 PM
 
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I'm very relieved that this is an individual thing, and not a common, endorsed practice. (I could see it, as so many people I know are freaking out over 'sanctity of marriage', that they would go to the opposite extreme.)

In a way I'm not worried so much about the OP and others either. Frankly, it's probably a little like parenting, marriage. We say "oh I'll never do this" or "I'll always do that" but when you are confronted with an extreme situation you realize that even the most carefullly laid plans and purposes sometimes fall apart. Because to be honest, if you are deeply attached to your children, I think that allows you to tap in to primal rage a hell of a lot easier than if you aren't. ANd maybe you can intellectualize things now, but if you found your DH in that situation "committment for life" would very suddenly move from loving him through counseling and prison to putting him permanently out of his misery.

I do kind of worry about an extreme reaction though. I mean, it's fairly common for a man to kill his wife that's trying to leave, because "she's my wife and we were supposed to be married forever"--and when things don't live up to his expectation he takes all that passion and belief and it is burned away by rage. Maybe that is what PP are talking about, the ability to accept that divorce would be a last option, one to 'earn' through counseling, long separation, time, ect., the ability to accept that sometimes you might not have a choice (he might divorce you, he might have an affair or become abusive and you don't react the way that you set out to, sexual abuse, ect.).

Unless someone has lived through their partner abusing their kids and taking them back after the kids are gone ESPECIALLY with something as devastating as sexual abuse, they really probably can't predict how they will react, either way. Kind of like how someone who says they'll never let their baby cry and then their kid gets colic--well, sometimes even the best of intentions get readjusted sometimes and there's not very much you can do about it.
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#96 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 02:46 PM
 
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What a pointless conversation.


The consensus is that if you believe in an unconditional marriage you’re out of the AP club. If you believe it’s possible to love your partner unconditionally, you suck. Wow, I must be such a bad person for believing that someone could do such a thing. :

Hey, but I thought of a better one…

Would anyone who believes in unconditional marriage not get a divorce if the partner kidnapped the kids and would not return them unless that person agreed to a divorce?

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#97 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 02:47 PM
 
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Sorry, TC we cross posted. I found your post reasonable and I agree with much of what you said.

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#98 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 02:54 PM
 
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Originally Posted by IdentityCrisisMama
What a pointless conversation.
I really find some of your posts TERRIBLY terribly offensive.

"Hypothetical" "Pointless"

Surely you follow the news enough to realize that this conversation is NOT hypothetical OR pointless for hundreds, if not thousands, of children every day.

Seriously, shame on you for belittling the conversation that to some of us is all too real.
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#99 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 03:17 PM
 
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I thought we were talking about the OP. I realize that you talked about your personal life and I’m sorry if you thought I meant that your contribution in that sense was pointless. I can see why you think my saying this is shameful. It’s not what I meant if that makes any difference.

I find it pointless that we are discussing the morality of the OP and the choice to have an unconditional marriage and using child rape as a hypothetical. Rape and abuse *in these marriages* I assume *is* hypothetical.

I am not naive and I am not a stranger to tragedy. I also have life experience that influences how I think about this.

I just feel you and others are saying that it’s wrong to feel the way the OP feels. I was trying to address that and have also been insulted, imo. I don’t feel we are having a conversation and in this way I feel this is pointless for me and in regard to the OP.

I do not, however, think talking about your reasons for divorce or domestic abuse and violence in general are pointless.

I do think there should be a safe space to discuss unconditional marriage and to discuss the common recommendation for divorce if that’s what someone wants to explore.

I can not be objective but I don’t think that many of these posts have been respectful to the OP and that’s what I was reacting to.

But, I’m sorry. I have also shared personal information on a thread and I know that can be a very vulnerable thing to do. I realize now that it changed the dynamic of the OP and I should have recognized that things changed and stopped talking.


To the OP, I think people are still allowed to have a tribe in FYT. Debate is not allowed there so you could explore unconditional marriage there with like minded people or people not interested in debate.

I will not join you because that is not how I feel about my marriage. Good luck to everyone on this thread.

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#100 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 03:34 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gethane
I really find some of your posts TERRIBLY terribly offensive.

"Hypothetical" "Pointless"

Surely you follow the news enough to realize that this conversation is NOT hypothetical OR pointless for hundreds, if not thousands, of children every day.

Seriously, shame on you for belittling the conversation that to some of us is all too real.
There was a recent thread in this forum where a mom had caught her dh molesting her child. It wasn't clear what happened, as she later had the thread deleted, but she did not leave him immediately (or beat the crap out of him either). So for some of us, the possibility of being married to someone who is harming our children is very real.
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#101 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 03:43 PM
 
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ICM,

I am glad you tried to explain what you meant by hypothetical or pointless. However, it really doesn't make sense in the context of the thread from the beginning. The OP started a POLL AND ASKED what other people thought.

I still can't see how bringing up child rape is hypothetical. NO ONE really thinks that the person they are marrying is a monster! But SOME ARE. That's a fact. And no amount of wishful thinking will change that.

I honestly don't see how you honestly believe that someone staying with a child rapist IS in harmony with the AP lifestyle. To say that a mama that would do that is not AP seems pretty common sense to me.

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The mission of Attachment Parenting International (API) is to promote parenting practices that create strong, healthy emotional bonds between children and their parents. These practices nurture and fulfill a child's need for trust, empathy, and affection, providing a lifelong foundation for healthy, enduring relationships.
Seriously, how can you reconcile what AP is with staying married to a child rapist?
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#102 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 03:57 PM
 
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back to the original topic, i don't see why divorce is considered such a bad thing to begin with. we make decisions with the information we have at the time, and sometimes that information isn't complete. and sometimes people change. i don't think it's wrong to acknowledge that a marriage may not be working for whatever reason, even if it's not necessarily an *extreme* one. truth be told, i would never want my daughter to stay in a marriage where she was not loved and cared for, but if i stay in a marriage like that, that is what i am teaching her to do.

i actually wouldn't divorce because of cheating or drugs (unless crystal meth was involved), but i would divorce because of emotional or other neglect. i believe everyone has the right to love and be loved and to have joy in their partnerships, and if that isn't there, then i think it's pointless to stay together. furthermore, i think if you don't feel love for your partner yet stay with them out of some sense of obligation, you are denying them the opportunity to be with someone who may be able to give them what they truly need. and that, to me, is what leads to the old couples that you see now and then who are so bitter and angry at each other...and what's the point of that??? what a sad life...i think that if both partners have given things an honest effort and things aren't working, let it go already.
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#103 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 03:57 PM
 
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Divorce is absolutely an option for me.

You can find me on Facebook. PM for info.
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#104 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 04:02 PM
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I just feel you and others are saying that it’s wrong to feel the way the OP feels.

With all due respect...you're damn right. That is EXACTLY what I am saying. To me, and I think most people, IT IS WRONG to say, plainly, that you would stay with someone who raped your child.

To me, and I can't put too fine a point on this...it is beyond wrong, it is SO wrong that I would get kicked off MDC forever if I allowed myself to lose control....

Anyway, to say that you think it is hypothetical in "these marriages" is kind of a false statement given that 1 IN 4 children are molested (that tell anyway, the number is probably higher) and MOST of those instances are by a family member, trusted friend etc...so it is not out of the scope of reality to say that out of say, the 15 people who have posted on this thread, a few of their kids might get hurt (which is very, very sad and I pray not the case )


Yes, there are some situations where you can pull the old "unless you walked a mile" card.... BUT there are some situations where I know EXACTLY 100% I would bet my actual life on it right now may God strike me dead--where I KNOW with all of my soul, what I would do without having *been through it*.... and leaving a husband who raped my child is one of those things...

I mean, I know I sound like a broken record, but I can't wrap my mind about this-- I can't believe people would make a concious decision to stay with someone who did that!!!!!

What would you EVER EVER EVER tell your child?????? My God...there is no way you could spin that I imagine...

I am sorry, staying with a child rapist is NOT AP...my goodness, people have been slammed more than this on here for an out of control moment where they spanked or something....yet people actually get offended when people are shocked that they would stay with a child rapist....

What a world we live in.... I never thought this would be something I would have to ask potential friends in the future....so....how do you feel about spanking? cool...me too...breastfeeding? awesome!! You are still breastfeeding too? SUPER!! Oh by the way, would you stay with your husband if he raped your child?

Silly naive, uncommitted, conditional loving fool... I just naturally assumed that things like child rape were deal breakers for most reasonable, rational, normal people.
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#105 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 04:05 PM
 
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"If you R A PE ...not to be graphic, but I mean, I feel this is being taken SO lightly...that is, if I WALK in and SEE you LAYING on TOP of our VIRGIN 3 year old DAUGHTER with your PENIS inside her...or something otherwise as henious, evil, and disgusting.....I WILL NOT LOVE YOU ANYMORE. OUR MARRIAGE IS OVER. MY LOVE (in that instance) IS CONDITIONAL."

The fact that some people here are actually saying that they would stay is absolutely REVOLTING to me and I don't care....

Saying your child would be safe if your husband was in counseling...phhhhhtttt...

....and what if you seperated until your child was 30 and *safe*? You would invite the person who RAPED your child back into your life..and your BED????????????????

I just can't even....
Exactly

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#106 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 04:55 PM
 
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Originally Posted by gethane
I still can't see how bringing up child rape is hypothetical.
Maybe I don’t fully understand the definition of hypothetical. I’m (painfully) aware of the statistics of child abuse and know that domestic violence is far too common in our culture. AND, I wasn’t implying that any of the experiences of the members here are hypothetical.

But, the child rape that we’ve been talking about, at least how I understand the conversation and the definition, is a hypothetical example.


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Originally Posted by gethane
NO ONE really thinks that the person they are marrying is a monster! But SOME ARE. That's a fact. And no amount of wishful thinking will change that.
Yes, I know that. I’m really sorry if I’ve given the impression that I think that knowing the future is a factor in my opinion here. I would say that if anyone thinks they *know* what their relationship is going to bring then that kinda removes the entire point of conditions.

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Seriously, how can you reconcile what AP is with staying married to a child rapist?
I can reconcile unconditional love (and marriage if that’s the way a person expresses their love) with AP because I just can. This is a little ‘free range’ but I can see how a person might need to extend “AP” and unconditional love to the other relationships in their life in order to fully live that life.

I am considering a spin off about unconditional love because I’m surprised that so many people here feel that this is something that we can or should only have for our children.

I also think that it might fit with someone’s values to see some of the situations that we’re talking about (like domestic violence, substance abuse and molestation) as a sickness. While I think it’s extreme to include these things in the vows of “In sickness and in health” I don’t think it’s necessarily inconsistent with what I think of as good values to stay married or continue to love to a person who is sick in this way.

This gets into something that I think is a fundamental difference in how some people think of marriage. I know that marriage for me is just something that we will do until it doesn’t work (one person falls out of love, we’re not happy and etc.). But, I still struggle with the happiness thing from time to time. I worry about sickness or crippling tragedy. Part of me does kind of hope that I will stay with DH or him with me if we had some kind of tragedy that did not allow for constant joy (as if we have that now) in our marriage, yk?

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#107 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 05:30 PM
 
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i actually wouldn't divorce because of cheating or drugs (unless crystal meth was involved), but i would divorce because of emotional or other neglect.
I find this statement interesting. I've been married to a substance abuser (not meth), and have had several friends and family members involved with addicts/alcoholics. In every single one of those cases, the substance abuser was also emotionally, and in several cases physically, abusive. I think it's part of being a substance abuser.

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#108 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:01 PM
 
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that is probably true for some. and for me, it really does depend on the substance...furthermore, i have a pretty liberal view when it comes to these things; i believe there is such a thing as recreational use, and i would never consider leaving dh for recreational substance use, but others might consider even recreational use as abuse.

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Originally Posted by Storm Bride
I find this statement interesting. I've been married to a substance abuser (not meth), and have had several friends and family members involved with addicts/alcoholics. In every single one of those cases, the substance abuser was also emotionally, and in several cases physically, abusive. I think it's part of being a substance abuser.
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#109 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:04 PM
 
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My dh and I are recovering addicts, that's why I set that boundary.
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#110 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:16 PM
 
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I definitely separate recreational drug use and substance abuse. I've known quite a few people who use drugs occasionally on a recreational basis (I did myself when I was younger). But, when the drugs start to interfere with your life, and you lie to people you care about and steal from them (and others) and justify it all...well...not the same thing. I think there are degrees of drug abuse, as well, and it's not always easy to draw the lines. Fortunately, my ex made it simple.

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#111 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:20 PM
 
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I'm confused about why some are talking about child molestation as a "sickness" or a "disease" - this really seems to excuse it, like he couldn't help it since it's a sickness, or I vowed I'd stay with him in sickness and in health.

Last I heard child molestation wasn't in the DSM. It's not a sickness, it's a behaviour.

I've never heard rape of adult women called a sickness. Why start making excuses when it's a child who is raped?
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#112 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:23 PM
 
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I've been periodically checking in with this poll....I posted something early on before it got heated.....I just wanted to point out that voting "no" (divorce not an option) is not the same (for me, at least) as saying I would stay with a man who molested my children. When I think about theoreticals in *my relationship* with *my husband*, I stick with situations I imagine are possible. And, as I said early on, barring some tragic head injury, I can not imagine any possibility that my husband would molest a child, or be violent with us, cheat repeatedly, etc.

Sure, anything is "possible". And I am my child's hugest-ever advocate, and I would call dh on it if I suspected *anything* improper. But, having no reason to suspect such horror of my dh, I fail to see the purpose of imagining what I would do if he would do that--something so incredibly horrific. Personally, I believe it could only damage my relationship with him to imagine him committing such horrid acts.
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#113 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:27 PM
 
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Last I heard child molestation wasn't in the DSM. It's not a sickness, it's a behaviour.

I've never heard rape of adult women called a sickness. Why start making excuses when it's a child who is raped?
I did hear about that and, honestly, I don’t know. I just said I can see how another person might think that. I, personally, think that abuse of that nature (rape of an adult or child) is a sickness in laymen’s terms. What is that an excuse for?

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#114 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:28 PM
 
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Last I heard child molestation wasn't in the DSM. It's not a sickness, it's a behaviour.
Pedophilia, of which child molestation is a part of the diagnosing criteria, is in the DMS IV-TR (p. 571).

Whether it's a sickness, disease, behavior that can be modified, whatever. The pedophile can work with a professional and deal with his/her issues, but I ain't staying in a relationship with the person. Pedophilia, child molestation, child rape - my deal-breakers 100% no question.
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#115 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:29 PM
 
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Last I heard child molestation wasn't in the DSM. It's not a sickness, it's a behaviour.
Isn't pedophilia in the DSM?? I'm almost positive it is.....

Anyway, the two are not mutually exclusive. A behavior can be both a diagnosable sickness and a crime, right?
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#116 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:32 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Pynki
I voted no.. And I don't know of anything that would make me divorce my husband.. I told his mother very straight faced.. And dh too.. That I would SEE HIM DEAD before I would divorce him.. And I most assuredly feel it.. The only things that would make me divorce my husband are things soo awful that if I found he was doing them he would meet with an untimely end.
Pynki, I love you.

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#117 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:36 PM
 
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Hmmmmmm... Okay so although paedophilia is in the DSM, the ACT of child molestation is a behaviour.

What I don't like about the sickness argument is the whole line about "well I said I'd stay with him in sickness and in health" or "he can't help it." This is where I feel it gets used as an excuse.

Men CAN help themselves from raping their children. Some of them choose not to. No reason to martyr yourself and betray your child by staying.
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#118 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:38 PM
 
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I voted "no"...but perhaps too soon. After reading this thread, I have come to the conclusion that I am living in a "conditional" marriage. I would leave dh in a heartbeat if I found out that he had hurt my daughter.
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#119 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:43 PM
 
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Hypothetically and all.....wouldn't (shouldn't) the child-raping husband be arrested, prosecuted, and incarcerated for all eternity?
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#120 of 275 Old 05-15-2005, 06:44 PM
 
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To differentiate, I could see myself loving someone in spite of pedophilia (albeit, not maintaining an intimate relationship with that person.) I could not love and support someone in the face of hurting children. The impluse vs. the action I suppose. Although I figure people don't exactly get diagnosed with pedophilia unless they've acted on it
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