Memories of the Heart by Nancy Nair After thirty some years working with hurting couples, it is hard to not to reflect on memories of others as I look into the eyes of people I meet now. Sometimes while driving, I look over at the women next to me and think, “I wonder if she needs someone to help her through her day?” When I see people crying, I can hardly stand it. It is really hard for me because I remember when I was going through my struggles with Ken. I didn’t want my family to know, so I kept it inside. There were times when I would venture out and share with a friend things that Ken was doing that hurt me or the girls, but most of the time it just caused them to take up an offense against Ken. I needed someone to listen to me and maybe pray with me. I certainly didn’t want them to take up an offense. I found that when we resolved the issue, people would hold on to the offense against Ken and I didn’t like that.
I did have one lady from my church that I could go over to her home and share things that were on my heart. We could talk about Ken and I without her thinking badly of him. My memories of her are never negative. In fact, I knew she loved Ken and me so I didn’t have to worry about her hating Ken. She always waited for me to ask her for her advice otherwise she would just listen to me. I am sure that she was praying for me at those times because I would be crying and she would love me through it.
As I am helping ladies, I want to be able to be there for them to unload all those ugly hurts without them feeling that I don’t like their man or maybe make them feel like they need to protect them. I have realized that when they want me to help them, they will ask also. At that time I have the freedom to share my thinking. I want them to know I won’t tell them what they have to do. Assuming that they are in the same place I was, I often will give them some ideas. I do this because when I was in the middle of all that mess I had exhausted everything that I could think of. I try to help them to share their feeling with their husband; not what he should have done. When you begin telling them what they should have done, it will often end in a fight as your story will not be the same as theirs. I would say to Ken, this is what you said and he would say I didn’t say that. I found that sharing how it made me feel was the best. He couldn’t argue with how I felt.
Sometimes, I wanted to say all was alright to avoid an argument. But, God requires me to speak the truth at all times and if I said everything was fine just to get him off my back then I was not doing what God required of me. I would write notes and put them in the car as he took off for work so that he could think about it all day long. If I would have known today about journaling my feelings I would have done that. I would have wanted him to see how I was feeling so that God could work on his heart. I also wanted him to know how the children were feeling so I would have also shared how they were feeling instead of telling him what to do. I messed up lots of times and told him what to do but I know the best times were when I left him alone with God with just the note.