Being Married to a Pedophile: A Wife Speaks Out and Offers Hope to Other Wives of Pedophiles

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Letter from the wife of a pedophile explaining why she stayed and how she finally got out. Encouragement for other wives of child molesters.

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Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The LORD, the LORD himself, is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation. Isaiah 12:2

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Some of you may have read the following comment from last night, but it just will not leave my mind.  A courageous woman, Anon 3,  who was married to a pedophile reached out to address the wives of pedophiles involved in the Sovereign Grace Ministries lawsuit.  Her words were beautiful and gave hope.  In a later comment, she said that this was the very first time she had disclosed it publicly and felt that maybe God was prompting her to do so.   I, too, feel compelled to make Anon 3’s comment into a post in order to reach a wider audience via internet searches and so it will not be merely buried in the comments area.

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To those who have stopped by via an internet search on this topic, welcome.  You may be in a very difficult place.  No one knows the path each individual takes.  Some agonize for months and even years on whether to stay or whether to go.  On this blog, we talk a lot about spiritual abuse, but haven’t delved into the topic of what it is like to be married to a pedophile.  I happen to know a wife who is married to a pedophile and has remained married to him.  Although she would say things are fine, when I look at their marriage, I do not see that.  I see pain and emotional distance.  There is no intimacy, but two people living two separate lives.  She never got the courage to leave and it has taken its toll on the entire family, including extended family.  But she believes that she has made the right decision.

No one can make that decision for anyone else.  It comes with a cost.  That might be why Anon 3’s comment struck me profoundly.  This brave woman chose a difficult path of leaving the familiar behind and venturing out on her own with her children.  Her words speak for themselves.  If you are the wife of a pedophile, know that as I type these words, my prayers are with you  – – that you will be able to make the best decision for you and your family and that you will also continue to surround yourself with safe and loving support from friends/family who care.  You should not have to be alone in this process whether you decide to stay or leave.  ~Julie Anne

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A Letter from the Wife of a Child Molester

I actually do feel compassion for the perpetrator’s families. And I have a message for the wives:

I want you to know how sorry I am about your situation – both for you and your children.

You are not the only Christian woman who married a pedophile. I did too. I left him more than a decade ago because I knew that someday I would end up on headline news, just as you have. I am so sorry for the embarrassment and humiliation you’ve suffered.

Each of us makes our own decision. I stayed a long time with my husband too. I’m probably about your age. I hoped that my love would fill that empty place in his heart. It didn’t. I had fasted and prayed during my entire marriage. We tried years of counseling and even an in-patient treatment center. My husband got a masters in marriage and family therapy from a Christian university. It didn’t help.

One day, I found out about a new incident, and I realized I had to get out for the sake of my children and everyone around us.

I felt the Lord saying, “You are like a bird in a cage. But see? I have opened the door. You may fly out or stay in. But that door won’t open again.”

I flew out. And I am so happy I did. I asked my husband to leave – exhibiting a strength and toughness I never knew I had. I got him out of my home, out of my church, out of my neighborhood, and out of my town. I did not hate him; but I knew he was a walking disaster area.

Yes, the first couple of years were hard financially, but God was faithful. My children suffered at first, but they have turned out as lovely whole people. They are winners in every sense: personally, academically, and spiritually. They don’t have the level of damage in their lives that their father does. They love him but see his limits. I told them the truth when they turned 21. (They hadn’t been victims themselves and hadn’t known.)

I want to give you hope that if you want to fly out the open door, that life is wonderful out here. Yes, you will hurt a lot for a year, maybe two. But the joy of living without the burden of a pedophile in your life is incredible.

• I thought God could never use me again. But he has.
• I thought I would never be in ministry again. But I am — even more than before.
• I thought people at church would condemn me. But they didn’t. They surrounded me with love.
• I thought I would never be financially solid again. But I am. In fact I have 10 times the assets I did when I was married, and my retirement is nearly fully funded.
• I thought I was disqualified for God’s best. But I know now I am a daughter of the Lord, and am blessed.
• I thought my children would be damaged and hopelessly dysfunctional. They aren’t. They tell me that they feel the same as everyone else. In fact, they look at their friends’ mothers and see a lot more dysfunction there.
• I thought I would never have any honor. I’ve been put on many corporate and non-profit boards and served in far more leadership positions in church than I did when I was married.
• My children are proud of me for what I did.

I hope this has given you hope.

Whatever you decide, the choice is truly yours. I am thrilled I was set free. My life is incredibly happy. There are much worse things in this world than divorce.

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Update 7/27/13:  Even though this blog post is not current, the comments are being followed by others whose lives have been affected by pedophilia.  Feel free to reach out in the comment section (using a pseudonym is perfectly fine).  I keep all e-mail addresses strictly confidential.  

If you are struggling with the fact that your spouse/family member or close acquaintance is a pedophile and need help, please let me know.  I will try to find help/resources for you.  I have been in touch with others  behind the scenes gathering resources on this subject.  

You must know that you are not alone.  There are many wives/families who have walked your journey and would love to reach out to you.  ~Julie Anne

472 comments on “Being Married to a Pedophile: A Wife Speaks Out and Offers Hope to Other Wives of Pedophiles

  1. Mary,

    Stand your ground. You are doing the right thing to separate and get away. It is normal for your son to miss his dad. Tell him his dad loves him (if this is true), but that his dad has problems and he needs to fix them before they can see each other. Don’t say a lot to your son. You can always tell him what I told my kids: “I’ll answer any question you have when you turn 21, but right now, I’m not going to say very much.”

    Most of us ex-wives of pedophiles discover to our horror his family will know the truth but will pretend they don’t and will turn against us and makes up lies about us. Just accept that “blood is thicker than water” and they are simply going to do it, no matter what you say.

    Hang in there. A better life is around the corner for you and your son. My son has thanked me repeatedly for getting his dad out of our house. That removed the toxic attitudes and emotions from our lives and allowed my kids to have a healthy childhood.

    -Anon3

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi i am also a pedophile wife
    My husband confess all to me and he ask me to help him to cure that sick..
    He molest my own niece
    And no one of my family member know that except me.. I dont what him to put in jail but i want him to hel him cured.. What should i do?
    Im a filipino citizen.. Im not good in english so i hope you understand what i mean and i hope you help me about my situation..
    This is my biggest problem now pls i need your advice

    Like

  3. The police opened my bird cage door for me 2 years ago. My separation with my fiance and sons father was forced. His crimes were severely damaging. He has begun contacting me recently for the first time. I’m very hesitant as my instinct is to love him and welcome his return into our lives residually for our 3 year old who didn’t know his dad (not even that he has one) I’m fearful though of his underlying motives, possible lies, and simple short comings. I worry that if I get involved again we will never be free from harm again.

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  4. I recently found out after 11years of marriage, 12 years being together, that my husband molested my daughter for years starting shortly after we were married. I immediately reported it and he is now in jail. However, I still love him. We were at the point of seperating and possibly filing for divorce when I found out. He was having an affair and said he was leaving me. I was desperately trying to hold on and save my marriage and then I find out about what he did. How do I forgive myself for not knowing all this time and how do I rid myself of still loving him??

    Desperate and confused

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  5. Dear Jhoy,

    I am sorry for the pain that you are living through. Unfortunately, there is no cure for pedophilia and it is very resistant to treatment. You cannot cure what you did not create and you absolutely cannot control it. The most loving thing you can do for your husband is to turn him in to the police and to tell your family what he has done. Secrets make you part of the problem. He will molest again because he cannot control himself.

    Please protect yourself and the children in your life by notifying the police. We are here to stand with you.

    Hugs,
    Brenda

    Like

  6. Dear Single Mom,

    Please do not let this man back into you and your son’s lives. You are absolutely right to suspect his motives. Trust your gut! So many times we discount what our gut is telling us but it is so often right. You and your son will be at risk if you let him back in. Of course you still love him–he is your son’s father. But he will hurt again, you will be in harm’s way and most importantly, your son will be victimized–maybe not sexually but certainly emotionally.

    Hugs,
    Brenda

    Like

  7. Dear Desperate and Confused,

    Those two words so accurately describe the state of mind and heart that we find ourselves in upon learning that we are married to a pedophile. Let’s look at the facts that you wrote about: he was having an affair and he molested your daughter. You absolutely did the right thing by reporting him to the police!

    Of course you still love him. It takes the heart a while to catch up with the head sometimes. You spent 12 years with this man and anticipated a long future with him. Sometimes after the drama of arrest, trial, etc. is over we get lonely and look at the past with our perpetrating partner through rose-colored glasses. Take them off. Re-read the police reports if it helps.

    Forgiving yourself is so much harder. What helped me was this note from a child pornography victim. You can find it at: http://brendafindingelysium.blogspot.com/search?q=falene

    The partner is often the last to know. One of the horrendous things about this disease is the believability of the perpetrator! They are master manipulators, deceivers and can molest in plain sight. You had no way of knowing–none at all. You are part of a rather large community of women who were deceived by their partners. You are not weak, naive or stupid. You simply believed what your husband led you to believe. You cannot know what you do not know. As hard as it is, let yourself off the hook.

    Hugs,
    Brenda

    Like

  8. I need help. My daughter just told her boyfriend that her father is messing with her sexually. The boyfriend told me. Should I confront him in the present of family members? What can I do? My heart is broken.

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  9. Hi Mercy,

    How old is your daughter? Have you had a chance to talk with your daughter to verify this? If she is a minor, please report to authorities and let them investigate. I’m very sorry you are dealing with this heart-breaking news.

    Like

  10. I read the article. I’m afraid to file for divorce. My husband has been gone three years, but I’m afraid to file for fear of repercussions from his family. I’ve never trusted them but the feeling is stronger now.

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  11. Dear Mercy,

    I am so sorry that you have heard this devastating news. I agree completely with Julie Anne–report it to the authorities and let them do the investigation. Do not try to confront him in the presence of a family member. The last thing you want to do is contaminate the evidence or give him notice that you know. Contact the police and cooperate with them.

    Find a therapist who specializes in dealing with partners and victims of perpetrators and get your daughter into therapy. You will need to find a supportive community to help you as well, including a therapist. I recommend S-Anon, a 12-step program for partners of sex addicts for you. You will find an incredibly supportive group of women (and a few men) who understand what you are dealing with and who can provide you with the support you need. I also recommend a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist (CSAT) for you and for your daughter.

    Again, I am so sorry that you and your daughter are in this nightmare. You do not deserve it, you did not cause it (she certainly did not “entice” him) and neither of you can control it. If you want to connect privately, let Julie Anne know and she will reach out to you.

    Hugs,
    Brenda

    Like

  12. Hello! I am really unsure of my husband since we had our daughter. I have this gut feeling that he is a pedophile, but I have no proof of any sort and I don’t know what to do. I have seen him have an erection during her bath time twice in the past couple years. I confronted him the second time and he gave some dumb excuse so I began bathing her. She doesn’t like him to change her diapers or clothes and never has (she’s 2 and a half now). Today we went to a pool party for her friends birthday and I swear he had an erection again! I’m not one to jump to conclusions, but this is really concerning Me! I just don’t have a good feeling about this! Any advice would be so greatly appreciated because I am completely lost right now :,(

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  13. Dear W.S.,

    I agree that this is a confusing situation and one to be concerned about. I am so sorry; I very much know the pain, confusion and fear that you are no doubt feeling. I encourage you to find a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist and get some professional help. You can do that here: https://www.iitap.com/therapists-search/

    Right now you need information and you need professional support. You daughter’s safety depends on it. Again, I am so sorry for this nightmare.

    Hugs,
    Brenda

    Like

  14. I guess I am here because for years I have been confused about the reaction I received from my aunt when I finally confronted her about her husband molesting me. It was not the reaction I expected and it has always haunted me…
    After reading this I think I came to the realization that she knew all along. Looking back, I was so afraid to break her heart. I was 19. I had kept my secret for years to protect her and my cousins. To be honest, i don’t believe I ever planned to expose the man until one night my baby sister confessed to me that he had molested her. She was 13.

    Our parents were devastated when we told them. We decided not to contact the authorities until we could bring the issue up with our poor aunt first. Ironic that every step taken was to protect her yet when the moment was finally there, I’m standing face to face with her, there was no shock, no surprise, as if she knew what I was going to say just like I knew what my sister was going to say that night. 

    There was no pain or betrayal on her face…
    She emotionless, she said ” And what am I supposed to do? Leave him?” “I’ll lose the house!” “Why would my husband do it with you in my house when he can do it with 12 year olds overseas whenever he wants?”  “Why say anything? I was molested as a young girl and I didn’t say anything!” “Your sister? She’s a sassy girl that asks for attention ! ”
    The last thing she did was hug me, tell me things will be different now and it’ll be the last time we see each other. It was a tender hug. Definitely something I will never forget much less make up. Unfortunately, I was made out to be delusional in court by the opposing side. I was made out to be the crazy big sister that lied to prove my sister’s story. But that’s the furthest thing from the truth. I used to try to imagine how different things would be if I had only had the courage to scream and expose him to her that night. My sister would have never been hurt. But now I see that my aunt knew. She was either watching silently or she was playing oblivious. But would she ever admit that? What would it take?
    I can only pray that my sister was his last but with him still in the military and with a wife that is fine with him hurting children in other countries… Who knows right?
    I’ve gotten used to the idea that there will never be justice. Now, this article gave me a strange sense of hope. Hope that one day my aunt will repent and the guilt will be too heavy for her to bear. I hope the truth comes out through her. And I hope that this happens before he harms another child.

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  15. Dear HeartsDominique,

    Thank you for having the courage to speak up on this post and to tell your story, It is important for those of us who had the misfortune of marrying a pedophile to hear. I am so sorry that your aunt did not support you and your sister and that you found no justice. My belief and hope is that your aunt is the anomaly rather than the rule. Certainly the wives of pedophiles that I know do not fit her mold. We were/are horrified by our partners’ actions and cooperate fully with law enforcement. Our goal is the protection of children everywhere, often at great personal expense.

    Having said that, I do have compassion for your aunt–I do not condone her behavior at all but I understand the dilemma she faces. No one wins when a pedophile is in the family–certainly not the victims, nor the family members. When exposed, the family loses honor and often financial stability but that in no way compares to what the victim loses. Everyone suffers–in different ways–but suffers.

    My prayer is that you and your sister can find healing in the realization that not all partners of pedophiles collude or help the perpetrator continue to victimize innocent children. Most of us do all we can do to protect and defend the innocent. Your pain is an ever-present horror to us as we try to reconcile our partner’s deviant and criminal behavior with the man we thought we married.

    I know I speak for many of us when I say that I am so sorry for the pain you experienced as a child and continue to experience as an adult because of your victimization by a pedophile.

    Hugs,
    Brenda

    Like

  16. Hello, my name is Bella. I was married for 13 years with a narcissist, manipulative, alcoholic pedophile. In the last year of our marriage he sexually abused my sister’s daughter (6 years old and 11 years old at the time). I divorced him 5 years ago, but it feels like I have PTSD. I keep having flash backs. I had therapy but it didn’t help. My own mother tells me to get over it, but it’s like my brain is stuck in this period of my life and even though I do not love him anymore, the pain is still there…

    Like

  17. Bella,

    So sorry for what you are going through. With PTSD you dont just get over it. I have struggled with PTSD as well and for me the best outcome has been working with a trauma therapist who has a good understanding of trauma but also sex addiction. For me, EMDR therapy has been the most helpful to clear flashbacks. Cognitive Behavior Therapy doesn’t typically work on this type of trauma. Your family probably means well but they have no idea what it feels like to have PTSD. It’s not something you can just decide to get rid of. There are a lot of tools a good therapist can teach you to deal with the triggers but something like EMDR or similar brain-body work can actually get rid of the triggers or make them less severe.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Dear Renewal,

    I agree completely with slcoleman–talk therapy does not help much with PTSD. EMDR and other treatment modalities are incredibly helpful. I recommend a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist who works with partners. CSAT therapists are trauma-focused but also well informed on sex addiction, pedophilia, etc. The pain you have and are experiencing is unique and requires someone uniquely trained to help. You can search for a therapist in your area at: https://www.iitap.com/therapists-search/

    In the meantime, please know that you are not alone, you did not cause this and could not control or cure it.

    Hugs,
    Brenda

    Like

  19. Anon 3 this post was the first light in my confusion and darkness.

    God opened the cage door and I took the chance to spread my wings and fly free with my precious babies.
    He is now in prison until my baby girls are adults and we a liberated to live a life free from lies, deception and abuse.
    Thank you for speaking your truth… God bless

    Like

  20. Liberty Laughter, thank you so much for your comment. I’m thrilled for you and your children. What a difficult thing you did!

    You’re story will certainly be an encouragement to others who read here.

    Grace and peace!
    I

    Like

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