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|Your Sexually Addicted Spouse: How Partners Can Cope and Heal|
This book shatters the stigma and shame that millions of men and women carry when their partners are sexually addicted. They receive little empathy for their pain, which means they suffer alone, often shocked and isolated by the trauma. Barbara Steffens' groundbreaking new research shows that partners are not codependents but post-traumatic stress victims, while Marsha Means' personal experience provides insights, strategies, and critical steps to recognize, deal with, and heal partners of sexually addicted relationships.Read more...
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|How Silence Cost One Woman Her Life|
|Written by Marsha Means, M.A.|
|Tuesday, 28 February 2012 12:27|
It’s been seven years since I turned on my computer one morning in Blumenau, Brazil, opened my email, and read a message from from an unknown sender. It simply said: I thought you’d be interested in this, along with a link to a Lawrence, Kansas newspaper. I clicked on the link and what opened riveted my eyes to the screen. Along with photos, it contained the story of Martin Miller, a Christian; a husband; a father; and a deacon in his evangelical church; a school board member at his kids’ Christian school. And a sexual addict. Martin had been arrested for strangling his wife, Mary, to death so he could be with one of his Internet affair partners. His addiction, which started with pornography—the addiction often described as a victimless crime—had taken him to the ultimate.
With horror in my heart, I read every word of the dreadful story. I studied each picture, and was curious about the pastor shown visiting Martin in jail as he awaited trial. The story said the pastor was a recovering sexual addict himself, but one who had found sobriety. And then I read what the detectives had found in the Miller home: there, among porn stashes and thousands of addiction-related emails and computer files, they found a copy of my book, Living With Your Husband's Secret Wars. I shuddered as I read those words. They told me Mary, a college librarian, knew about Martin's addiction. Yet after much questioning of friends, neighbors and church members, detectives determined that Mary shared her story with no one. Mary's silence cost her her life; and it cost their children both parents, their home, and everything they had known in their lives.
In those moments, God spoke to me as loudly as I have ever heard him speak, and the tears began to roll. For months I had been trying to determine if I should try to return to the States and try to re-build a counseling practice. My divorce had been final for five months, and slowly, I had recovered some of my physical health. But was I yet well enough to make it work? My son and daughter-in-law encouraged me to stay there where it cost less to live; there, where I could be near them and have affordable health care. Troy told me he would help me develop a small business teaching English. I was torn and confused about what to do. That is, until someone sent me the Martin Miller murder story.
That morning God reignited a passion He has somehow kept alive in me during the darkest days of discouragement since returning home. It turned out that I wasn’t well enough yet; some of you know that story. What you don’t know, however, is that during the last seven years it has been Mary Miller’s senseless death that has kept me going. And of course, God. Allow me to share just one story of God's continued over-the-top guidance in my life.
During the summer of 2009, a few months after moving to Mazatlan, Mexico, He delivered the most amazing, the most powerful God-moment I've ever experienced. It was during a Ministry Team Immanuel Processing telephone group facilitated by Debbie Brazell. Although we had been meeting and sharing for several weeks, and I had talked to, and emailed, Debbie's husband, Pastor Darrell Brazell, that day, for the first time, Debbie revealed that they live in Lawrence, Kansas. Lawrence rang a bell.
“Do you know anything about the Martin Miller family and the murder trial?” I asked. Her reply sent a sudden chill throughout my body and covered me with giant goose-bumps. Turns out Debbie's husband, my new email contact Darrell Brazell, was the pastor in those pictures I had poured over four years earlier while still in Brazil!
In those moments, four years after I returned to the States, drawn by hurting womens' needs—as represented in the death of Mary Miller—God had closed a circle He started drawing years earlier in my lonely, steamy little apartment in southern Brazil. Back then I had hoped I was still following Him; there were sure times I wondered. But in the words that Debbie spoke that day all my lack of certainty vanished instantly. I knew that I knew that I knew I was right where God wanted me.
And now, seven years after leaving Brazil, I still know. Though the journey at times seems long and lonely, and some days I am beyond weary, each day I know I'm right where He wants me. And my prayer for you is that through our united efforts here at A Circle of Joy, you too may know you are right where God wants you and your heart is healing as mine has.Share