My husband is suffering from PTSD. He has never really committed his life to God until about 9 months ago. I pray for the lord to help us and him. I feel our marriage is a rollercoaster! He tries but any little thing triggers him! Whether I know what it is or not. Our kids are now 8, 5 and 3. They are beginning to see things they shouldn't! As a mother I want to protect them and run but as a Christian and wife I want to help him! I'm so confused as to what to do. I've prayed and prayed I know serve a glorious God who can overcome any thing but I dnt know how to approach him without offending him or starting another argument! Sometimes scriptures help, but please I'm asking for help it's gotten physical now. What should I do?
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I can surely feel the pain and the frustration you are experiencing. Someone you should be happy with and one who should be defending you and shielding you turns out to pose one of the greatest dangers to you. It is such a trying moment! You say you have prayed and read some encouraging scriptures in the Bible, and yet things continue to get worse. However, these are the lead weapons to begin with in this fight. Carry on with them. They may seem not to work in the physical as immediately as you would love them to, but I assure that when you pray, something keeps going on in the spirit. At the appropriate time, the time of which is appointed by God, you will surely see your prayers answered in the physical. But let me also urge you to roll off much of this in your head. Reactions can't change him. When you pray, believe that God has heard your prayer. And according to your statement, you say it's only 9 months since he accepted and let Jesus into his life. Additionally, you said he tries, (though you didn't specify to do what), but if what I think is what it is, then he is willing to transform, please give him time while you unceasingly pray. This is the very first evidence that your prayers are beginning to be answered. I humbly ask that you just carry on. Confessing Christ is one thing, transformation is a process. Bear with your husband and give him time to go through the transformation process. Carry on loving him. Cease to be bothered so much by whatever he does. Try to press down your emotions and allow yourself peace and freedom. For it hurts you more to feel strongly about what he does than not to. Equally so, every time you are bothered so much about whatever he does, it only energizes him to carry on doing just that. Stop looking to be hurt, especially in his presence. You are not alone in this. Many others undergo harsh treatment from people who should have been their protectors. I have an in-law who underwent very harsh treatment from the husband. He never beat her, but he ridiculed her, tortured her psychologically, asking her more often than not to go get herself another man. It would be so hurtful. He had told her he only needed children from her and now that he had gotten them, she was free to move. The man had another woman elsewhere. But she persisted and carried on in prayer. Right now, the man gave up on the outside woman, he came back to his wife and they are happily together. Though he is yet to accept the Lord, the change in him is evidence that the prayers are being answered. How you come out of it is what tells the hero in you. Jesus is our hero because He overcame all His trials. When you overcome this with your husband who is already Born Again and when he is transformed by the grace of God, it will tell the hero in you. Mark you many others look or would look to you for guidance. But also try to understand exactly why he is behaving the way he is doing. Is there something in particular that sets him off? Could he be using something which gets on him? When you get to know what the root cause of all this could be, it will help you to know how to pray. It also matters much how we pray. I would have also advised that you engage him in peaceful conciliatory talks. However, I can't tell how possible such would be. For he may not listen to you or may not give you as much space, or it may even make things worse. But if you can, it would be another good gesture. Above all, just as Paul says in 1Corinthians 13, whatever you do concerning your husband, let whatever drive be out of love. Stop looking at him as a mere husband, begin to look at him as a brother in Christ who needs both physical and spiritual support. What he is going through is equally what any other Christian who may not be your husband would be going through. Your husband is a sweet man! It is only the devil at play. Jesus loved us even when we were sinners (John 13:34-35), (Gal 6:2)
You are a strong Christian woman, mother and wife. I applaud you for fighting for your marriage. Find a good Christian counselor for him and another (separate) one for you. PTSD is real and requires real treatment (no one would ever advise someone to pray that heart attack away, would they? No, they'd call 911). You report he is getting physical. If he is hurting you, he is not honoring you, the marriage or God by his treatment of you. Seek a safe place to be while he gets treatment and then, if it's safe for you and your family, return to living together. Now, I'm not advocating divorce straight away. Just time apart so he can get the treatment he needs to honor you, your marriage and God. Keeping yourself safe is not un-Christian. Showing your children what a Godly marriage looks like is Christian, even if it means time apart to heal. Staying in an abusive relationship teaches that its ok to abuse and acceptable to be abused. All of you deserve better. This is a hard road, but you can overcome it.
I greatly empathize with you. Things will get better! You have committed your marriage to God and He will help you! Psalm 46:1 says "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble". BUT WHEN and IF it is physically violent, please leave. You can leave and not divorce and be ok. Have a plan, find a relative or shelter. I'm going to answer this from what helped in my struggle; four things, and I can honestly say since implementing them, things are on their way to normal. The first: confessing wrong to each other and asking forgiveness with each hurtful incident. If anger and yelling go on in front of kids, eventually you'll have one of them doing it. The beauty of starting with forgiveness is it teaches your kids to take responsibility for their actions. If you and the kids do it, and ask your husband to as well, then all the legal ground satan has to destroy your home will be taken as soon as confession is uttered, and forgiveness given. You are also teaching your children compassion and mercy. How this works is to say as soon after you hurt the other persons' feelings, to say to them: "I was wrong for _____, please forgive me". Then have the offended person declare "I forgive you". Do it with your kids even if your husband doesn't at first. Your husband will get on board if it becomes a family expectation, just give him some time. It is also humbling for a parent to ask forgiveness of a child...a memory your children will not forget. Second, NEVER SUBMIT TO PHYSICAL VIOLENCE, LEAVE AND GET HELP! If it is verbal only, and you can stand it, if you can tolerate anger and yelling, ask God to show you how to submit to a husband who is out of control sometimes. Remember Eph. 5:24: "As the church submits to Christ, so you wives should submit to your husbands in everything". To do this realistically might mean taking breaks from each other or getting a family member/ friend to watch the kids as your husband heals. I know it is hard to think of submission in a time like this, but if you get in line with obedience to that scripture, it is very powerful, and God will honor your efforts. As well, your submission places the full onus of responsibility on HIM, where it is scripturally, and then other men can step in and help him. Next, remember 1 Peter 4:8 "Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins". Your love for your husband and family go FAR for covering the hurtfulness that can come from trauma. Love each other, no matter what. Take no record of wrongs. Finally, PTSD changes the sensory perceptions. Things are heard differently, sounds and actions are perceived differently, even the physical sense of touch can be received as hurtful. In the spirit of compassion and partnership, approach your husband when you are sure his armor is on the floor, and gently discuss one small area where the situation you might have just fought in was not how he perceived it, but this different way, and explain it to him---only if his armor is down and he is listening and respecting you. Then get to the heart of the matter: trust. Until the disorder is treated or God heals him, he will misinterpret things through his PTSD (like an abuse victim would interpret a a pat on the back as something else), and he HAS to trust in another person to set him straight. Because your spirit is joined with his (Matt. 19:5), there is no one better equipped to do this for him! As he learns to trust and listen to you, your marriage will improve, and God will humble him. When humbling happens, several scriptures guarantee God's response: 2 Chron. 7:14, James 4:6, and James 4:10 to speak of a few. I wish great blessings on your efforts. Know that God forbid men in the Old Testament from marrying foreign women for one reason: the women would entice men to serve their gods. We have that power still. You determine the God to serve in your marriage. Stick with the one true God and He will help you!
I am so saddened to hear that you are struggling in this manner. You are doing the right things by taking it to God. Remember that five of the nine fruits of the spirit are patience, long-suffering, gentleness, love and faithfulness. Keep feeding from the word of God daily. We must endure each other's burdens as Christians. I have to suggest at this point, especially that the children are at risk, that you speak to your husband about going to counseling, preferably Christian counseling. Remind him daily that you love him. When he can't show love, you hold firm and show him even more love. But, you must find some help for yourself, at least a support system who knows something about PTSD. You are not going to be able to stay strong if you are not being supported. Continue with prayer and reading the word. I will put in a special prayer for you and your whole family. Thank you for standing by him, he really needs you now.
First: Go stay elsewhere, with other family, it is not unbiblical to protect you and your children from physical abuse, even if "it's not that bad", the "yet" is always just one moment away. If you stay in it he will keep doing it. And he's not thinking clearly but he will be accountable for what he does (not just with God but with the law) so don't stay bcus it just makes it easy for him to sin and set himself up for a horrible future (jail?). You'll protect him as well by leaving for awhile. It is not divorce, it's healthy physical boundaries. And he needs you to do this to for him. He just can't see that now. But he will be thankful Second: absolutely keep praying for him and being loving and kind, but don't feel forced to suppress your feelings! That is internally damaging and will deteriorate your well being and character, and you'll struggle to be a light for your kids, and suppressing feelings IS unbiblical (they are God given, and we're called to control them not suppress them. It's what we do with them that should be in goodness, gentleness, peace, and to be firm). Find a pastor to help you work through this in a healthy light; we can't always see the right way when we're in the fog of war, so we need a few good sets of eyes to help us. I cannot reiterate enough: Get your kids and you out of there. Keep walking in faith knowing you are more than allowed to run from danger while still loving from a distance and with healthy boundaries. Seek community too. Ask God's help in finding all these things- and dont hesitate any longer. Do not fear as you do what you're called to do to protect your kids and to disable your husband from doing anything more (or continuing to do) that he will later hate himself for. You sound like you have a wonderful heart for your family and for Christ. I pray for strength to you in this time of hard decisions and heartbreaking realities. Keep clinging to Jesus, seek wise counsel, and go get your kids to a safe place. Always remember: "I AM the Lord your God, who grasps your right hand and says, 'Do not fear, I will help you'." (Isaiah 41:13)
You are living in a very difficult circumstance which probably few of the people around you understand. If your husband is diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder then he really needs to be under the care of a Christian counsellor or psychologist. Many Christians will tell you that all he needs is God, he doesn't need counselling. However, a Christian counsellor will perhaps be able to link the right techniques with the appropriate scriptures that are needed for his healing. Many people who have suffered severe trauma in life struggle with allowing God to help them, because they are wondering why God allowed the trauma to happen in the first place. They feel that they can't trust God with their future because He wasn't there for them in their past. "Where was God when my daddy was beating me up." or "Why didn't God stop that car accident that killed my mother" etc... Pray that God will help you to find the right counsellor, but in the mean time, get to know all you can about PTSD and recognise his particular coping mechanisms, so that you can support him in those and not unknowingly trigger his stress levels by breaking down his shield. I will be praying for you and your children in particular.
In addition to all the advice already given, I suggest that you engage him in a late hour quiet and frank discussion when only two of you are present. Tell him truthfully that your open quarrels are not healthy for your up-coming three children. Admit that you too may have been a contributor to the problems but that both of you should agree, from that day to put an end to the show of shame. Tell him to call you to order any time you do anything that offends him, and that you will do the same. After this dialogue, when you perceive that he is charging up again, do not answer back. Quietly tell him you would try to do your best to correct his perceived wrongs, and carry on without showing hurt. No matter how crude he is, you may find out that, this humble display, together with your prayers, will win him back to you. Finally, get your oldest child to one day ask him why two of you are always quarrelling. Let's listen to his own answers.
Wow! Anger is not from God but he does say we can be angry and sin not. Unrighteous words are the difference and physical abuse following these words are marks of sinful behavior. You can arrest this spirit that is oppressing your husband. You do this by binding it and looosing it from its assignment against him. Jesus said, "Loose him" to the people at Lazarus' tomb after he came at of that grave. You need to loose your husband from the demonic powers that are oppressing him and bind that spirit's power over him and command it to leave and never return in Jesus' name. If you are truly saved and have received the Holy Spirit, the power of the most high is in you. You have authority in the name of Jesus. It is not by our might or by our power, but by my spirit says the Lord. The Holy Spirit indwells all who confess him Lord and have invited the Holy Spirit in them through salvation. The angels of God in scripture would say, "The Lord rebukes you" to demonic powers. But we have the power of the living God in us if we are born again. Jesus can protect you, but you wrestle not with flesh and bone (your husband) but with principalities, powers, spiritual wickedness in high places and the rulers of darkness in heavenly places, not heaven but the plain of evilness that surrounds planet earth. Jesus himself clearly proclaimed Satan was cast out of heaven to the earth with his followers. He is the prince and the power of the air. He goes to and fro about the earth, seeking whom that he can devour. Of course his demon hoard do all this for him; after all Satan is a fallen arch angel with followers, spiritual and human. There are those possessed by him through the practice of horrific sins, of which I do not speak of these evils, and I am commanded by God not to even speak of their evil actions, but you have the power of the most high God in you. Use it. If you go to a truly bible believing church, you should have elders to pray for you and your husband. If they are truly knowledgeable elders and know how to deal with evil spirit oppression or possession, they can help you, but many churches today are ignorant in dealing with the demonic attacks and possessions of demons. But you are a daughter of the most high God. If you confess him Lord and judge good and evil with his word. Not the world's teachings of what is of right or wrong, but God's. When you have cast down the ways of the world and have exalted God's word above man's, God is in you through the power of the Holy Spirit; therefore you can take back your husband from the enemy of his soul and your marriage. You are not powerless through prayer and the authority of Jesus Christ; you can defeat the enemy of your husband and marriage. You and your children need a husband and a father. The power of the most high that is in you can defeat your enemies in the unseen world. Fast and pray and take authority over Satan and bind that spirit of anger. Its power will be diminished, eventually broken and defeated. You have to fight for your rights in the kingdom of God sometimes. Why? Because demons are rebellious and enemies of God and his saints. The kingdom of God suffers violence and the violent take it by spiritual force. Jesus said we could do greater things than he did collectively. How? Through prayer, fasting and using the authority of his word that he has given us in Jesus' name. We overcome Satan by the blood and the power of the word of God.
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