I had lots of things I wanted to write about. And I couldn't decide what exactly to write. So, after sitting here, staring at my computer screen, I prayed for God to help me. And the thing that came to my head was, "Ask (husband's name) to write something."
So, here is some special wisdom from my best friend! I wish you guys could see what a charmer he is :)
I still remember vividly the first day I told my wife about my addiction. It was the worst day of my life. I can remember exactly where we were and how hard it was to say. I can remember how hard we both cried, but especially how hard she cried. It still hurts when I think about how much pain I put her through that day, and how much pain I have put her through since.
There have been times where I have imagined killing myself in order to allow her to have a better life...a better husband. But when I told her that, it only caused more pain. For months our marriage was hollow. We fought constantly. Our intimacy decreased significantly. Her anger terrified me at times. I felt as if nothing I did was good enough to satisfy her, and that, in turn, angered me. It was a vicious cycle. There were times when I was tempted to act out in my addiction simply to lash out at her. In short, it's safe to say two things: first of all, we were unhappy. And second, we had no idea how much we needed each other to get through this.
One thing that our bishop emphasized time after time was communication, so we began opening lines of communication with each other. To say it was difficult would be a huge understatement. We were afraid to say things to each other because we didn't want the other to feel hurt. But they needed to be said. I needed to understand just how much she hurt, and she needed to understand what I was going through so she could know how to help. Sometimes tempers would flare and we would say hurtful things to each other. But thinking back now, the worst times I can remember were when we didn't communicate at all.
We read scriptures and prayed together almost every night, even on the nights when we were so mad at each other that we would just read a few verses, say a quick prayer, and then not say another word to each other. Although not ideal, it slowly laid the proper and necessary foundation for the both of us. With time, we grew individually. As we grew individually, we used the communication we had slowly become comfortable with to build each other up. We have traveled a long road together and have learned much. Along with my wife, I can honestly say I am grateful for my addiction. Without it, we would not understand each other the way that we do, emotionally and spiritually. We would not love each other as deeply as we do. And Christ would not have as big of an influence on our marriage as He does.
I am grateful for my dear sweet wife. I was thinking the other day about a couple of girlfriends I had before I met her, and wondered why things didn't work out with them. As I was thinking about it, the Spirit whispered to me that neither of them would be able to endure what my wife has endured the past couple of years. I was struck with how special she is. The difference between who she is now and who she was when we were first married is astounding. I am constantly impressed with her spiritual depth and her closeness to the Savior. She has loved me far beyond what I have deserved and will have a special place reserved in heaven because of it.
Now I just need to make sure I'm there with her :) Not riding on her coattails, but leading her there as a righteous priesthood holder should.