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Issue 8 - ©2001 by Kari West - Garden
You are among friends who feel your pain and know the journey
through the valley.
If you have ever said, "I have had enough, Lord ... Take
my life ... (I Kings 19:4-5)," you are not alone. The topic
of this newsletter is suicide. This silent scream for help
ricochets across the heavens more times than we think. Every
94 seconds a woman in the United States attempts suicide.
Every 86 minutes a woman commits suicide.
The relentless emotional and mental stress of divorce can
drive any of us to the brink of despair. The dissolution of
marriage is "more destabilizing and wrenching than any other
emotional crisis, including death," says New Mexico psychotherapist
Joan Rossman, who has practiced for 20 years.
Helen Richards, who survived the Dachau concentration camp
during World War II puts it this way: "Divorce was worse than
Dachau had ever been. In the camp, I was young. It was not
a personal thing. There was everybody else. I wanted to survive.
But during my divorce, I wanted to die." Married
for 24 years, Helen says she was afraid, hurt, with no place
to hide and nobody who understood what she felt.
But take heart! You are loved. You are safe. There is hope
for the here-and-now, whatever you face and however you feel.
Here's what's new:
Kari's article, "When My Garden Is Disturbed," originally
scheduled for the March-April 2000 issue of The Plain
Truth is now set to appear in the September-October issue
under the title "Replanting Your Faith. You can view this
issue of the magazine at the web site http://www.ptm.org./
In this 8th issue of the DivorceWise
newsletter, the featured survival story from a woman just
like you comes from Jane of South Dakota, whose story
on pornography appears in Issue 4. With great courage and
transparency, she shares her suicidal thoughts and how she
decided to head to life.
reflection ... by Jane in South Dakota
Years ago, our pastor's wife shared with our Bible Study
a conversation she had with a young woman she was counseling,
who was considering suicide. I have never forgotten the advice.
She said that she told the young woman, "Of course you
will go to heaven, but you are forcing your way in; and your
room isn't ready."
You see, I related to her advice because I too considered
suicide--several times. It is hard to admit now, but it's
the truth. Life had handed me some unexpected challenges.
The disappointment was overwhelming. I experienced some devastating
things. (Reference DivorceWise Newsletter Issue 4 for Jane's story on pornography).
I wasn't prepared for the feelings of being a failure as a
woman and a wife.
The first time I thought about suicide was after my
husband had informed me that he had cheated on me. Somehow
at the time God allowed me to look into the face of my precious
two year old son, and I realized that I didn't want him to
grow up without a mother.
The second time I thought about it was after I realized
that my husband had been involved in pornography for years.
This time, suicide was definitely an option.
I felt like I was being sucked down into a whirlpool of depression.
I was fighting for my life. I even went as far as driving
over 400 miles to ask my older sister if she would raise my
two children in the event that I couldn't take it anymore.
I also made an audio tape outlining my requests.
When I was served with divorce papers, that was the third
time I considered taking my life. I knew I needed help
immediately. This time I went to my doctor, who put me on
Then, one year ago, the thought crossed my mind again
during one of the hardest periods in my life. I had just
received a call from my ex-husband informing me that he had
remarried the day before to someone who had been a co-worker.
He had known her for years. I was shocked to discover that
my two children were there with both of them and had known
his plans for months.
I really felt that I was being pushed over the edge. All
my hopes and dreams dissolved before my eyes. What was
the point of going on? These feelings were confirmed
to me by two Christian friends. Today I believe that if they
hadn't shared their feelings with me, I would have been in
serious trouble. They affirmed my feelings that my ex-husband
had orchestrated this to harm me. But God used what was
meant to harm me and turned it upside down into something
good. God used my friends not only to confirm my suspicions
so I could lay them to rest but also to intervene and support
me in my anguish and fears.
Thinking about suicide is the devil's work. He wants you
to believe that your situation is hopeless. Satan keeps
coming at you with lies, as he is the "Father of Lies." He
knows how devastated you are. He also knows you have been
betrayed and deceived; this was his plan! He wants you to
keep yielding to his lies. He wants you to be confused, discouraged
and isolated. He wants you to dwell on your broken dreams.
He wants you to keep looking backwards.
I plead with you, do not yield to the devil. Remember: he
has been defeated at Calvary. The devil's goal is and has
always been to destroy you and your family.
But God has another plan for you. Cry out to God.
Find a friend to share your feelings. Go to your doctor and
ask for an antidepressant. Get into a support group or counseling.
Read books that deal with your problem. Be faithful with your
Please don't force your way into heaven. God loves you. He
still has a plan for your life. Do not be afraid to ask for
help. I am very thankful I did. Today I am looking forward
to what God has planned for me.
Help for today ... by Kari
Suicide is another taboo topic we seldom discuss. If truth
be known, most of us give pause to thoughts of taking our
life during the dark night of the soul when we feel there's
no place else to go. Some of us attempt it. Others plot it.
Maybe for a few, the word has never crossed their mind. Perhaps
you know someone who has committed suicide. Wherever you are,
you know that the cycle downward into the pit of despair is
real. Hopelessness fuels helplessness. Helplessness ignites
When you feel bottomed out to the point of wanting to end
your life, please take Jane's words seriously. Her wisdom
learned in the valley can save your sanity and enable you
to head back to life. You are a good woman. You are a woman
of great worth. God still has plans for you! Hang on. Reach
out to Jesus--our hope of heaven and our get-through-the-day
hope for the here-and-now.
A promise you can trust
"You have allowed me to suffer much
hardship, but you will restore me to life again ... ---Psalm
"Save me, O God, for the flood
waters are up to my neck. Deeper and deeper I sink into
the mire. I can't find a foothold to stand on. I am in deep
water, and the floods overwhelm me. I am exhausted from
crying for help....But I keep right on praying to you, Lord,
hoping this is the time you will show me favor....Pull me
out of the mud, don't let me sink any deeper!...Turn and
take care of me, for your mercy is so plentiful....I am
suffering and in pain. Rescue me, O God, by your saving
power....For the Lord hears the cries of his needy ones;
he does not despise his people who are oppressed. ---Psalm
69:1-3; 13-16, 29, 33
Please stop by again soon
Please let me hear from you. I answer every letter and e-mail.
Also, be encouraged to share what helped you through your
divorce so others know they are not alone and that they too
will survive. E-mail by Clicking Here
or write Kari West, P. O. Box 11692, Pleasanton, CA 94588.