Dealing with Abandonment in Marriage

It is really very difficult to be abandoned in marriage. The one person that you trusted and relied on the most is the last person that you would expect to abandon you. It is a hard truth to bear. And this is the reality that most of us face each day.

You have a choice of repairing your broken relationship through restoration or counseling. If the marriage has become too damaged to be fixed, then the final route would be to choose divorce. The best way to approach this is with a calm and collected mind. Be rational before making any decisions. And once you made a choice, stand firm and keep at it.

How Can You Dealing with Abandonment in Marriage?

Relationship Restoration

Those who are abandoned mostly rely on their partner to restore the relationship. If the spouse has left, no reconciliation will be made unless he or she is willing to come back. It gets more difficult for the situation to be fixed if the reason for abandonment is extramarital affairs.

According to Dr. Harley, a renowned psychologist from the University of California, affairs end in two ways. The unfaithful spouse may recognize the wrong and the suffering that was initiated when he or she started cheating. He or she ends the relationship and starts to reconcile with his or her partner.

On the other hand, some prolong the extramarital affair until the relationship dies a natural death—mostly because of the realization that his current boyfriend or girlfriend still cannot provide everything that he or she needs.

Those who physically abandon their spouses need to realize that their relationship with their husband or wife is more important than the reason they left them in the first place. If he or she finally understands the realities of loneliness and incompleteness without the spouse, he or she will eventually go back.

Of course, the abandoned spouse will also have to concur with the restoration of the marriage. He or she, after all, is the one that was left in the house. But the good thing is that, in this situation, although there is anger or hurt, the love for the spouse never went away.

Heal Yourself

Most people who are abandoned will have low self- worth. You may feel that you are not good-looking enough or did not put forth the best effort in the relationship. Yes, there may be times that you have caused some arguments and fights, but remember, you did not leave your spouse.

You are ready to stay in the marriage and fix the relationship. Do not be so hard on yourself. It will definitely hurt. You will surely feel pain. But you should still validate yourself as someone who has the strength to hold on to your marriage.

​Turn to Constructive Actions

Instead of sulking in your own issues and problems, you should just turn all your feelings and emotions into constructive uses. Get a new hobby, excel in your career, and spend more time with your kids.

You can recover better if you see yourself as more productive than you were in previous years. You will get to know yourself more and be more tuned in to who you are as a person.

Marriage Counseling

Emotional abandonment seems easy to deal with, especially for people who do not physically leave their spouse. In the case of our second story, Bernie thought that everything was okay because he was providing for his family financially and also serving the community.

But, unfortunately, his wife had needs that were not met. Although the husband was physically present, his mind and his heart were not with his spouse. The wife longed to share her intimate feelings with the husband, but because he was not available for her, her needs were not fulfilled.

Marriage counselors greatly help couples in need of a solution for emotional abandonment. Both the abandoned and the abandoner need to understand what happened in the relationship. They must open their minds and their hearts as they seek the help of the expert.

The counselor can give a new perspective on your current situation. Heeding the advice from marriage counselors can increase the chances of you getting back together.


According to the law, you can file for divorce if there is abandonment in marriage. This case is also called desertion.

Abandonment is not just about leaving the spouse without his or her consent. For abandonment or desertion to be considered grounds for divorce, your situation must have specific criteria.

The one who abandoned the spouse must have left him or her for at least a year without the husband and the wife agreeing to live separately. The respondent must also fail to pay financial support for the family. And lastly, the cause of abandonment must not be because of the plaintiff.

You can also have cases wherein the one that leaves is the spouse that is aggrieved in the relationship. This is called constructive desertion.

If your spouse does not want to have sexual relations with you, it can be a cause for constructive desertion. The nonsexual relationship must have lasted at least a year and must be proven in court.

Types of Abandonment in Marriage

Physical abandonment is the term used for spouses who leave the house, their husband or wife, and the family in general. This type of abandonment can easily be seen and proven since the spouse is physically not present in the life of the partner and the family.

Emotional abandonment is a little more difficult to determine because the spouse is still physically part of the family. He or she still stays and lives in the same home. But he or she is emotionally absent.

The spouse who emotionally abandons a partner does not meet his or her needs. He has more time for his work, hobbies, or interests than with his wife and family. She prioritizes others more than her loved ones. This can cause the spouse to feel incomplete. He or she becomes discontented with their relationship.

Physical Abandonment

I am Ben. I was married for sixteen years. I have two kids. I love my wife, Sheryl. She has been there through thick and thin. I could have never chosen someone else other than her.

In our fifteenth year of marriage, something happened. I felt a sickening ache in my stomach, so I was rushed to the hospital. I needed immediate medical attention. I did not know what was happening to me. Then I was diagnosed with cancer.

Sheryl was, at first, okay with our setup. She would go to work during the day and take care of me during the night. I had to stop work because of my therapy. But since I was still quite capable, I prepared the food for our kids and sent them off to school.

Then one day, she just did not show up. I couldn’t contact her on the phone. Some of my friends say that she went off with some guy. I am still not sure where she is and what she is doing right now. She just abandoned me.

Emotional Abandonment

Bernie and I did not have a problem financially. My husband worked so hard at his job that he was promoted twice in a year. And I am proud of my husband.

Bernie also wanted to do more volunteer work and charity in our community. Since he was a respected man with a reputation that preceded him, he was often elected to lead these organizations.

At first, it was fine with me. I loved that my husband helped with the local charities. And he had a stable job that my family could rely on. But then, as he got more and more recognized for his volunteer work and his career, he began to become emotionally distant from me.

He mostly worked overtime in his job. When he gets home, he just eats dinner and goes to his volunteer organization meetings. He does not have time for me or for his kids. I mentioned these problems to Bernie, but he just shrugged them off as if they were not actual concerns.

Because of the emotional void that I felt, I had a nervous breakdown. I needed my husband, but he was emotionally not here with me. He just abandoned me.

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