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Our Voices Blog

by 5WAVES, Inc.

To the Partners...

This is the follow-up to Dale's first letter, Dear Younger Ann, written to the girl version of his late wife, to all the survivors out there who have a hard time believing they are truly loved and worthy of love. This blog is written to partners of child sexual abuse survivors.

Supplemental, to the husbands,

(I’m sorry, I can only speak specifically to the husbands whose wife was abused, but I suspect that some of these truths will cross over.)

You guys, I know it’s only natural to want your wife. I know the pain of rejection. I know what it’s like when your wife feels that something natural is dirty but she can’t put it into words. Those feelings are natural, I know, and I have had them all! It stinks! It’s completely natural to want your wife…. The thing is, marriage is not only natural, it’s supernatural! For us though, the one that we love, the one that we would take a bullet for, she is wounded and although our love for her wants her healed more than it wants our glandular urges met… the way that often works itself out in life, is that it ebbs and flows.

Ann was nearing the end of her life and she had been in bed for almost 24 hours, so I got her up and walked backwards, from the bedroom to the living room, holding her up and steady.  So there we were, slowly trudging as I mostly held her frail body up, as we walked. She was getting weak, so I held her close to me. It was getting precarious, and I was forced to hold her up, without hurting her. Picture a bearhug….

Off and on during our marriage, she had begged me to dance with her and I would not…. I’m just not that guy. I had playfully told her once “not even for love! I am NOT a dancer”. But that night I was. I gently held her up and swept her around the room as I hummed “Peaceful Easy Feeling” in her ear. She told me that she didn’t know that I loved her like this, and I said “I didn’t know it either baby” as I started singing, about that time I realized that I was almost to the place in the song that says “I want to sleep with you in the desert night with a billion stars all around” so I started humming again. She realized what I did and she started crying…

She said that she couldn’t even make love to her husband and that she was so sorry for all those times… The man that I wished that I had been all those years answered her “I’m counting it as if you rocked my world every time” … The inspiration came directly from the Bible, in Romans 4, where it talks about how God counted righteousness to those that didn’t do the work. That was one of my better moments as a husband and follower of Christ.

I wish I had an easy answer for you but the truth is, it’s a hard road that you are on and my very best advice is: just look at her, observe the way she moves, think about how she trusts you….

Let yourself fall in love with her a hundred times a day… you married a living feeling human that loves you and chose you. If she had a broken leg, you would want it healed, you would help her get it fixed. This is a lifetime work and, if you keep the right attitude about it, the journey can be just as joyful as the destination.


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