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Staying Together for The Sake of the Children...What of the Children?

Updated on February 28, 2015


In a Previous Article
I discussed the situation
in which a couple stays
together for the 'sake'
of the children.

It seems apparent to an
observer that the 'family'
in the case discussed
was unhealthy.

Children were being warped
by the twisted 'Normal' of their environment.

Staying together for the 'sake' of the children should be rotated 180o to Parting for the Sake of the Children.

The Effect On The Children

Abe was married three times.
He had children with each of his three wives.

Wife One and Wife Two divorced
him for unfaithfulness.

Wife Three stayed with him for the
Sake of the Children.

At the time of his third marriage his bride was a pregnant eighteen year old. He was thirty eight. He had money, a house, status. She had nothing.

She was usually pregant during the first five years of marriage. Then she learned of his infidelities. His many infidelities.

If she had only one child, maybe two; if she had a profession, a family home, a place to go, she, as ex-Wife One and ex-Wife Two would leave him. But she had nothing, so she stayed.

She claimed she stayed for the sake of the children, (she now had four). The truth is
she stayed with him because she had nowhere to go.

Abe was a tyrant, and despite his first layer of cheer and friendliness, he was
a cold man who liked the sound of his own peristalsis.

Wife Three, now twenty four, withdrew her affection. She began to think about herself.
She returned to school and filled her thoughts and life with her studies and her friends.

Her world was outside of the home.
She had nothing to say to the man who betrayed her.
She didn't talk to Abe, she didn't share.

She didn't explain, her way of imparting information was the 'advisory';

"I'm staying with my cousin in town I will be home next Friday." given as she leaves.

The absence of 'advance' warning, the lack of discussion was Normal.
The children grew up with this kind of insecurity.
This kind of keeping plans to themselves.

They children learned to do the same.
For them it was not a choice to be secretive, for them it was normal.


Malcolm was the second child, first son of his parents. He was about five when the relationship between his parents moved to cold silence.

His mother, torn to bits by her husband's infidelities, angry because she had nowhere to go, moved into her own world away from home, family, and children.

Malcolm grew to become a withdraw young man who had no words for feelings, did not show them, and could sit in silence for hours. By the time he was In his twenties his main form of communication was by texting on a cell phone, which virtually never left his hand.

Outsiders tried to draw Malcolm from his shell. If they spoke to him while he was driving he turned up the radio. If he was in a room when someone tried to engage him in chat, he walked out. It was clear Malcolm was turning into his father although he obviously didn't like the man.

At the age of twenty seven Malcolm became involved with a woman. She became pregnant. She needed the words of reassurance that he didn't have. She considered an abortion the only option. She had it without telling him. Then broke off with him.

He learned of the pregnancy and abortion months later. He didn't know how to feel about it, because Malcolm didn't know how to feel. He didn't know how to care.


Anabel was the first child of her mother. She was the 'reason' why Abe 'had to marry her'.

After a few normal years, and the birth of Malcolm and two other children the relationship between her parents changed. She, more than the others, could almost word it.

If she would chatter as normal for a girl her age, her father became gruff and insulting, "Too Much Talking!" he would bark because he didn't want to hear sounds from other beings.

She withdrew into silence, pretty much excluded from the company of her peers and wound up concentrating on her school work. As she did well her father would look at her with affection, utter nice words. Getting her father's approval was so craved that she flung herself deeper into her studies to get that prayed for smile.

By the time Anabel was in University she was the odd geeky girl no one was interested in. No one talked to her nor did she talk to anyone save in pursuant of the lesson.

Out in the world she is amazed at how people converse. She still considers those who engage in normal conversation extremely chatty. She asks so many 'stupid' questions that people find her a 'must avoid'.

This is the result of a child being raised in this kind of silence under that kind of tyranical regime.


The youngest child of Abe and Wife Three was Scott.
He was seven.

One day workmen dug holes. Scott filled one with water from the house.
Then he threw the puppies into it and ran off.

An alert workman saw what had happened and rescued the puppies.

The Workman spoke to the helper about Scott.
She wasn't a bit surprised.
She regaled the workers with stories of the child's random cruelty.
And not just with the puppies.

If Scott knew one of his sisters or brothers wanted something, he would damage it,
whether eating that saved piece of cake, breaking a pencil...although they didn't have the word, the scientific term was psychopath.


Anabel and Malcolm's father, Abe, had fathered a son, James, with his first wife. She had divorced him shortly after learning of his adultery.

James had grown 'normally' with his mother and was accepted by her second husband. There are no dark corners in his character. His interaction with Abe is fairly limited although Abe has far more patience with him than he does with Malcolm or Anabel.

James communicates with others, shows emotion. He is disliked by Malcolm and Anabel as he 'talks too much', is 'noisy' and 'has no manners.'

Anyone meeting this family quickly sees through Abe's false friendliness, his wife's withdrawal, and is somewhat creeped out by the Zombie children.

Everyone talks to James and finds him quite pleasant. This is because his mother did not stay with Abe for the sake of the children, she left him for the sake of the children.

Separate FOR the Children

There is no question that Abe's family is extremely sick.

It is sick not just because he can't keep his zipper closed, it is sick because
his wife didn't leave him.

If she had divorced him and taken the kids, no matter how bad things might
be economically, they would have had a real mother.

They would have mingled with other children, they would have, whether their
mother remarried or not, have been able to developed normally. They wouldn't
be 'zombies', they wouldn't be so enclosed within themselves they can't relate,
and they wouldn't have the traits that Scott has displayed.

Scott is simply manifesting the hatred that burns in the heart of his mother.
Her life is ruined in her mind, and her children were shackles.

Scott was that weak moment of 'reconcilliation' which didn't last very long.
But long enough for her to re-energise her resentment.

The older children are already damaged to the extent that their capacity to function is compromised. The little one will need psychiatric help. He has never known 'normal'.

It is remarkable to watch him, so selfish and cold that he doesn't seem human.


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    • qeyler profile image

      qeyler 6 years ago

      Thanks Sassy and Kelly. If I hadn't seen the effect on the children (who are now in their twenties) I probably wouldn't have much of an opinion. But as you indicated, Sassy, the fact that the wife fell out of love that the relationship is 'sick' and the poor kids grew up thinking that it was normal has destroyed them.

    • sassydee profile image

      Delilah 6 years ago from los angeles, ca

      yes i completely agree with you if i would of stood with my ex husband none of us what of been happy espcially my kids because they would of seen mommy and daddy fighting all the time because I had no trust or respect for the guy anymore even though i tried i couldn't and plus i fell out of love with him. i think when women say for the children i personally think that is BS because they just don't want to sound or look like a fool saying that they just really still love the guy that hurt them! voted up and useful

    • profile image

      kelleyward 6 years ago

      Wow what a situation. I'm sure it's difficult watching kids respond to a divorce. Thanks