Hi! My name is Jenn (the wife) and I wanted to write a post because I have read all of his and they have moved me. Not only has his posts moved me but the encouraging comments as well. I have actually seen him use some of your suggestions and they have truly worked. Because of your help you have contributed to the wellbeing of our marriage. I am truly grateful and moved. Thank You!
Since Brendan has started his new job he is hardly home. I am beyond proud of him and his drive to provide for him family. He has made every effort to show us his love. This is huge to me because for 10 years I was a “pastor’s wife.” I had to live, act and simply be a certain way that put a lot of pressure to be the “perfect” Christian. This sounds horrible now but during the 10 years I thought this was normal. I thought there was something wrong with me. I already sucked at reading my bible and I grew up in California so I was already an ass too. And if Brendan thought something needed to change well he had to have been right because he read more than I did and he IS a hell of a lot smarter than me.
So in 10 years I have worked on myself and when he came home that night to tell me he didn’t believe anymore I thought he was going to tell me he wanted out. That he didn’t want to be married to me, that I wasn’t enough for him. I didn’t grow up with a loving family. Drugs, alcohol, sexual violence was a norm for my birth parents and my foster parents were emotionally abusive. For me, the people I thought loved me would walk out and I was used to it. For me I was the problem. That’s all I ever heard. That’s all I ever knew. Brendan leaving would have been a norm. He wasn’t acting like the man I dated and fell in love with.
God, church or job whatever you pick changed him. Changed him not for the better. But every day I loved him, every day I tried to be better for him. Every day I worked for his approval. Some days I was awesome at it and other days I sucked. But you’ll get that with any marriage.
What made this hard was that I also had 150 members of our church picking at me. Disapproving of my actions. Thinking about it now still hurts. I cannot say it enough being a pastor and his wife IS THE WORST JOB EVER. And the best thing that has happened to us IS Brendan becoming an atheist. Once I worked through all our SHITTY friends and the emotions that came with that. I fell in love with my best friend all over again. I feel in love again! (I’m saying it again because it’s beautiful!)
Our life will be different this year. Our life will be full of love, laughter and memories that encourage our children to find our kind of love when they are older. If you were to have asked me 9 months ago if this was going to be my new norm I would have laughed in your face. The best advice a fellow wife in my shoes told me was to forget about the faith stuff and focus on your marriage. She was and is so right.
I haven’t heard from or seen god do anything for me in these months and you would think a life of service would warrant something. Ha I think Brendan said that too. So if you are reading this and you are in our shoes or will be remember your spouse isn’t the enemy and it’s okay to love them even if an old book tells you otherwise. Love conquers all!