The world we live in has many struggles. Unfortunately one of the very severe conflagrations is DIVORCE. At The JewishPath we are not divorce experts or counselors but we can post questions and responses. Please E Mail any questions or comments.
This essay study is dedicated in the loving
memory of Mr. Paul Sakash, may he rest in peace.
It was early evening. The gentleman was at home alone exhausted from a very difficult day in the office. His position demanded constant dedication. It was not easy but he was very successful. That evening his wife went to a friend's with one of their children after cleaning up from supper. The other children were out and about with friends. The doorbell rang once then shortly after, again and again. The persistent ring turned into banging so the gentleman finally got up and angrily went to the door. He peered out through the peep hole. It was two men dressed in suits. He wondered, What do they want? What could be so important? Where is everyone? What's going on? He opened the door. One of the men identified himself as a police officer Benton. In the same breath he asked, Are you Mr. XYZ?
The gentleman replied, Yes.
Officer Benton said we have some bad news. Could we come in?
Mr. XYZ responded, Yes, as he unlocked the security door. As Officer Benton entered with his partner, he handed Mr. XYZ an envelope. Inside was the bad news. It was a court order requiring him to move from his own home. Unbeknownst to him, his wife of twenty-two years had filed for divorce. The shock that came over him was indescribable. He turned pale. He felt sick.
Officer Benton spoke in a kind, firm, soft tone. His voice was deep. I'm sorry, Mr. XYZ but according to this order you will have to find somewhere else to stay this evening.
Mr. XYZ thought there must be a mistake. He reread the court order. He couldn't believe this was happening to him. His wife had also placed a restraining order on him. He couldn't call his own home. He couldn't speak with his children. He couldn't discuss the matter with his wife. He felt so naked! He felt stripped of the life he had worked sixty or seventy hours a week to achieve.
Officer Benton explained that he should gather a few things for that evening, then make arrangements through his attorney to return at another time. Mr. XYZ was very shook. Thoughts were racing through his head. Why couldn't I see this coming? How could I have prevented it? What's the matter with her? What have I done? These thoughts continued to taunt him as he gather a few things. That part was easy. It was like packing for a business trip. But, he paused...how long am I going to be gone? When will I be able to return? Will I be able to return?
The officers escorted him to his Lincoln. He thanked them for using discretion..not coming to his office and driving an unmarked car... As he backed out of the driveway he thought, Where will I stay tonight? He chose a hotel known for excellence. He entertained clients and sponsored the annual company holiday party there. He pulled into valet parking and gave instructions for his things to be brought in. He was greeted warmly at the counter. "Good evening, Mr. XYZ. Will you be staying with us this evening?"
He responded, "Yes. I want an executive suite on the top floor," as he removed his charge card.
The clerk responded, "Fine," took the card, searched the computer for an appropriate suite, entered the charges, swiped the card and handed it back to Mr. XYZ. Shortly after, the clerk discreetly informed Mr. XYZ his charge had been declined. He was embarrassed and furious. He couldn't believe what was happening to him. He paid with cash. Apologized and went to his suite. He opened the curtain viewing the harbor lights. It was one of his favorite treats as a teenager. He would drive his car to this hill where the hotel now sat and view the city lights. He did this often. That evening he began thinking about his father. He returned to the night nine years earlier when his father died. He remembered how comforting the lights were and how beautiful the sunrise was. He often revisited that night in his mind. He set his briefcase on the coffee table, leaned over, took his wallet out and slid into a soft, soft chair again viewing the harbor lights. After contemplating for awhile he leaned over removed all his charge cards from this wallet and briefcase. One by one he set them on the table. It was the early hours of the morning when he finished calling the final charge card company. The news was devastating. Between all his many charge cards someone had managed 1,300,000 dollars of cash advances. He was certain that the stock portfolio that he shared with his wife was history. During the day he received three calls from his broker which he failed to return. Needless to say his entire world had crashed. At present his wife had the kids, the family house, a million three hundred thousand dollars and probably their twelve million dollar stock portfolio. His money markets were safe because they required a special password and his individual trust left to him by his father was also safe for the present. Aside from that he was a broken and penniless man.
Fortunately for Mr. XYZ he remained calm, pulled his life back together, sorted through the legal entanglements of a difficult divorce, gained custody of his children, and returned to Yiddishkeit. He found his bershcert, remarried, and started a new family.
Struggling through such an incredible and shocking problem as this required good friends to lean on and many counseling sessions. Overcoming such massive devastation takes some time during and after the divorce. The point is you can get through anything with the right ingredients.
This sad story is only one of many that surround divorce. Each is a little different but the end is the same, DIVORCE! If you are struggling through a divorce or trying to pick up whatever pieces that are left, JewishPath offers this Divorce support page to express your pain, to tell your story, to ask advice from our readership or to seek mental and spiritual support . Simply E Mail us the information...and please keep it clean.
Wishing you the best,
Dr. Akiva G. Belk