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So how did I get here?

By Iris Knapp


In the summer of 2020 with COVID gaining momentum and regular life

routines going by the wayside, I never would have imagined that Zoom

rooms would become a regular part of my life. This started with Stephanie

Holmes' invitation to join a Zoom group she was starting. It was aptly called

“What Happened to My Happily Ever After?” and I reluctantly said yes.

I had no idea what to expect. There were nine of us, all neurotypical wives,

in in various stages of separation or divorce all from neurodiverse husbands.

I spent all of the first meeting just listening. As each woman shared, I was

surprised and amazed as they all shared experiences similar to mine. In my

heart I was saying me too, me too! As I looked on the screen at the faces of

the other ladies in our group, they were all shaking their heads. Yes, they

also understood. There was a connection!


This journey for years had been so isolating and I had been so alone. When

I would talk to a pastor, a Christian counselor, or even a friend I would hear

things like “Submit more” or “Men who've been in the military are just like

that or “ You must be exaggerating” and “He's great at church!” As time went

on I found myself losing who I was and I learned to just be quiet in order to

keep the peace. If I disagreed with something my husband said I was being

argumentative and disrespectful. He said he was smarter than I was and he

knew more than I did and the Bible says he is the head of me!


You must understand that I am NOT against marriage, I love marriage! I do

believe what the Bible says, in context. Not all neurotypical / neurodiverse

relationships are doomed to end in divorce, there are many good

relationships but there are also unique issues that can create major

problems if both partners are not willing to look honestly at the issues and be

willing to work on them together.


None of us got married with divorce in mind. As Christian women we

planned on being married for a lifetime and the thought of divorce is

devastating and humiliating. And to make matters worse, this was another

marriage for me after my divorce from my children's dad, who was a minister

who became an addict and turned away from God. I felt like a failure.


In our online group we did talk about what happened in our marriages but we

spent most of the time in the word of God and allowing the Holy Spirit to heal

our hearts. We prayed for each other, not just during the time we met on

online but during the week. We would also share with each other via email.

We were comforting & encouraging each other in the same way we had

been comforted by the Father. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4). This wasn't planned, it

just happened.


Over the past almost three years this group has continued with new people

joining in and established ladies moving on. Many of those who have left are

staying in touch and we've been able to cheer each other on as our lives are

being restored; we celebrate victories and cry with each other and

encourage one another when life is too hard. We can't change the past and

we can't change other people. That is a choice each of us have to make,to

allow God to change and heal us.


This group has been going on now for almost three years with a few of the

original participants and many new ones. It's been a safe and supportive

place for all of us. It has been a blessing to see women who when they

started with the group, could only cry, but now can offer encouragement and

hope to others. God doesn't stop working in our lives just because our

marriages ended.


I love Dan & Stephanie's tag line“There is no exclusion in Jeremiah 29:11”

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you

and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. is There is hope

for the future no exclusion clause in Jeremiah 29:11. There is a hope for the

future!


If you would like the support of a women's small group or you are looking for

a Christian Life coach contact me at: coachingwithiris@gmailcom

112 views4 comments

4 Comments


Vanessa Newchurch
Vanessa Newchurch
Apr 02, 2023

Thank you for sharing , Iris. God can take the broken things and make a masterpiece out of them. I love the group, check ins, prayers, and emails. God bless you, my sister in Christ!

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Iris Knapp
Iris Knapp
Apr 02, 2023
Replying to

Yes, Vanessa. God is the Master of creating beauty from ashes!

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Mary Lang
Mary Lang
Apr 02, 2023

Iris, I love being part of your group! Your leadership of our group of angels-on-earth, cheerleaders, encouragers, commiserators, and friends is a HUGE factor in my healing journey. I thank God for bringing us together!

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Iris Knapp
Iris Knapp
Apr 02, 2023
Replying to

God had a plan when Stephanie started this. It's just a reminder that we can always have hope for our future!

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