the walk away divorce
Tuesday, 01 July 2008 09:44

 the walk away divorce 

If you swim in shark-infested waters then you'd expect to get attacked by sharks, unless you are totally out of touch with reality,perhaps you are from another planet where sharks don't exist?, or just totally ignorant of the danger a shark present to swimmers in the same waters.. A sane person is not likely to swim where sharks are frequently to be found due to an awareness of the sharks predatory nature and how it will act in accordance with that nature. Sharks will act like a sharks and will hunt, kill and feed and they do this over and over again in almost the same identical manner. If you're in the water where sharks are to be found then you could likely end up as its dinner if you are silly or ignorant enough to keep doing the same thing over and over again and tempting fate this extremely risky indeed suicidal way and expecting to get away with it forever..some day you will end up a delectable tasty little morsel for Mr or Mrs"oh what big razor sharp teeth you have!"

So What do sharks have to do with walkaway spouse?

Just this....Just as a shark is singly fixated on feeding and reproducing a walk away is firmly focused on getting out of a marriage but please read on....

a walk away can be a wife or husband

 A walk away divorce  happens right in front of the the soon to be left behind spouse..(either wife of husband) the potential walkway is or has been emotionally checking out of the marriage for sometime(is yours?) and the walk away wife or husband doesn't have to be in the midst of a mid life crisis for it to occur it can happen anytime although the stress of a crisis of any kind might well lead to a spouse walking away from a marriage sooner that with a little effort,honesty and patience could well be saved ...It is often said that when a walk away wife checks out and has given of trying to change things (albeit using ineffective methods that simply don't work...for example nagging or in fact that make matters worse)  husband will believe that his wife has "stopped nagging" and getting on his case about the relationship(ceased "trying to change him" as he would say from his perspective which does has a grain of truth in it as does every complaint in such close personal relationships ) he interprets this as the relationship getting better and all is well,he is apt to think "well all marriage have their up and downs" and to continue on blindly And it is in his limited but short term view ...he fails to see that this is the calm before the storm ,it certainly seems more peaceful....but the big D word is looming and about to be given voice for in reality she has stopped caring and in her frustration has lost hope and  holding onto any hope that the relationship has a chance of changing or surviving(walk away wife syndrome). the Walk away isn't so much that love has been lost suddenly  but rather HOPE(and rapidly growing disillusionment) that will eventually solidify into any "love or romantic" feeling vanishing,it is the slow death of a marriage...this is why some many walk away wife or husband can state that although they "care" about the left behind spouse it is in a more platonic sexually neutral way way than anything sexual or romantic(there still remains a small emotional attachment that takes a while to completely disappear)  There is what seemingly appears to be a Divorcing script for this or if you prefer syndrome,the walk away wife or husband use very similar and sometimes often the exact same words (and the same actions and behaviors) and in keeping with our shark analogy there’s seems to be an "instinct" or nature to the Walkaway spouse. The Walk Away Husband or Wife uses very much the same words as any other anywhere in the world from Austria to America to Australia and this led one witty Left Behind Spouse on our marriage saving forum to say to another LBS who had recently been "bombed" ...(walked away from after getting the walk away speech) "Hey Bob you wanna come over to my place and take your wife home?, my wife wants to walk away too, she says she wants a divorce and it seems like it might be your walkaway wife that has moved in and taken over my wife's body from what you have told me,whoever the women who is here at the moment she certainly isn't anyone i know

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emotional divorce

As funny as this situation can seem (and it really isn't funny if it is you that it caught up in it).Left Behind Spouses and partners(lbs) also seem to have a script from which they work (like the swimmers intent on tempting fate as mentioned, by if not so blissfully for a Left Behind Spouse, then certainly ignorantly swimming in shark infested waters ) ...when a lbs is walked away from a lbs imitated "bombardment" of texts and emails is not far away (text and email terrorism) followed up by a constant barrage of emotionally laden phone calls to the WAS..these are replete with pleading,begging,rash promises of change,anger,exhortations,insults and character assassinations,accusations,attempts at emotional blackmail and brinkmanship games.(There are sometimes a threat of suicide or of the kids being used in some way) and jade colored eye howls of rage,jealousy and protest,which can often mutate into the actions of snooping,stalking and at it worst, assault (perhaps leading to fatal injuries being inflicted) on either the walkway partner or their new love interest (and sometimes even the children).if things have gotten this far as this sorry state...and the LBS doesn't see that none of this is working and indeed may and is very likely to have made matters very much worse,(akin to thrashing about in the water and attracting the shark in the worst way possible) they will blandly persist with it,thinking very very misguidedly that this has a chance of saving the relationship and changing the the mind of the walk away spouse.

Here's a short list of what you are very likely to hear straight from

the Walk Away Husband or Wife



"I love you but I am not in love with you"
"I love you like a brother" (or sister)
"Too little, too late".
"I will never love you again",..

"I don't love you that way" or "you'll never change"

(of course the unsuspecting Left Behind Spouse will gladly jump into the sharks(WAS) mouth on hearing that she or he "will never change" and attempt to argue their case(as if the WAS is still hoping for and asking for change) and make all kinds of wild and rash promises that they will while the Walk away spouse will chew and grind the lbs up and spit them out...end with some justification as they have probably heard it all before during previous heart to heart talks.  It is a statement of fact from the walk away's perspective not a once more or further request from the walk away for the lbs to change now when it is "all too little and all too late" which is very much how the walk away sees the situation. It is Wives and female partners that typically use these words more by the sheer fact it is women who initiate divorce more often than men, 75% of divorces and break ups are imitated by women. Women it seems these days find marriage far less tolerable and worth staying in than earlier generations of women at a time when there was more social and cultural supports to keep a women in a not so wonderful relationship, but those days are well past Women nowadays want and expect lot more(and prepared to get it) than a husband merely to bring home the bacon and make a bee line for the fridge or remote control instead a concerted effort to be part of of and in the relationship at all times emotionally not only when sex is in on the cards. 

Women are far less prepared to be and go on being the emotional caretakers of a relationship as they have traditionally been in the past,a women will soon get tired of and frustrated with a man she feels she has to pursue (often her way of seeking "reassurance") who common response is to stonewall or discounts what are for her very real concerns about the direction (and his lack emotional input)of the marriage. This is often what a women mean when she says her husband "never listen to her".She feels neglected and only there to serve her husbands purpose.

See related:The distance and pursuit dynamic in marriage (In truth women have probably always wanted a lot more but lacked a voice and the means to get it.

Is either gender entirely to blame for this?

NO marriage is hard work and both genders seem not to want to know this or rather ignore while still paying "lip service" to the notion (just ask any about to be married couple what it takes to make a marriage succeed?...they certainly know the talk  but often don't walk the talk) this essential truth and too often approach issues in their gender specific way.. ....without work and a fair degree of understanding,tolerance and a good dose of reality there is not likely to be anything remotely coming close to "happy ever after".It doesn't just happen,marriage is not something you can just on "auto pilot".

LBS expecting to get early reassurances from a Walk Away that they are doing well at their attempts at trying to Save the Marriage(if you doing well and more importantly effectively that is),your earnest but too eager attempts at getting the relationship back on track is like asking the shark not to be a shark and cease doing shark like things. You are asking to be eaten alive...

These are expectations "too early" and are unrealistic.

A WAS(walk away spouse) will simply not be convinced,indeed they will tightly hold onto the old cliché that a leopard cannot change it's spots despite the fact that people can and do change (it is inevitable anyway) and those that get in charge of change and direct it can do so for the better and for the relationship but is doesn't happen overnight,things take time.

The same also applies if the left behind spouse asks a Walk Away Spouse about commitment or possible re-commitment to a relationship, even if they are only asking tentatively about such at some future date down the track. In the early post bomb days the WAS(Walk Away Spouse) will weigh up 'how they feel' based on past "bad times" near and far (and any good times will be discounted, ignored or totally turned on their heads and rewritten) will and asks themselves how this makes them "feel" right here and now,it will get filtered through "negative feelings". and their likely response will be to deny the request and restate (often very forcibly and not so tactfully)their desire for a divorce.("and hurry up about it i wanted it yesterday!") The Walk Away Spouse is a master (and makes an art form out of it) turning all those once attractive qualities the LBS has (and those that attracted them to the LBS in the first place) into their polar opposite "negatives”...if you were prudent and "good at handling money" previously you are now "a tight assed miser". Relationship history gets rewritten and you become the devil incarnate responsible for everything wrong in the world... The relationship must be first be gotten to a more "positive place" a "safe" place,and a sense of hope restored before there can be any such talk of re-commitment. The WAS pretty much responds to their feelings of "lost hope”,their belief that the relationship (or their partner) will never change and this over time(the emotional divorce morphs into "I LOVE YOU BUT I'm NOT IN LOVE WITH YOU" message...If a WAS is involved in a extramarital affair(which often happens by this time) then the new person is usually seen as the "ideal" and everything you are not and the solution to "everything hat is wrong in the marriage"(namely the LBS) the new partner isn’t" and hardens the WAS in their non commitment to you. If asked in under these circumstances often they will "go for the kill" verbally leaving the LBS feeling shattered and demoralized, Torn Apart(like being eaten by a shark) and can set back or derail completely the LBS(left behind spouse) MARRIAGE SAVING efforts if they let it.


How to save your Marriage

You should keep the above in mind (if and when it occurs should you even somehow to manage to amazingly get you and your WAS into ) MARRIAGE COUNSELING begins, a "too soon" call by an over eager and excited counselor (or you) for a commitment from your partner in the early sessions is likely to be met with refusal and may even see the Walk Away Spouse cease marriage counseling altogether as often a Walk Away Spouse will have only accompanied the soon to be Left Behind Spouse to placate them ("I am only going to help you handle this") as if they are doing you a favor. Walk Away's are known to be notoriously ambivalent and usually there's little or no real interest in trying to save the marriage. A call for "commitment" often offers the perfect excuse to cease the counseling altogether.

Is the situation hopeless?. No not by a long shot, SOLUTION FOCUSED MARRIAGE AND RELATIONSHIP COUNSELING / COACHING for you can get you back on track doing 'more of the things that work and doing less or none at all of those things that don't" quickly. It can also teach to pay attention to "what is important" and to "let go of what is not". You don’t need your partner to even be part of this process or to have their consent. The work and changes needed to save the marriage can be done unilaterally


"It Only Takes One To Get the Ball Rolling"





WE CAN HELPthe walk away term can be applied to either spouse,wife or husband
Note: Please do not construe from what I have written that I am negatively or maliciously labeling those that Walk Away from a marriage as "sharks"
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Last Updated ( Friday, 17 February 2012 05:22 )