Dear Rabbi Boteach,
I need to know when enough is enough in a marriage. Is divorce ever an option when adultery is not the issue? My husband and I do not even get along anymore, and I am miserable. He won't get a job and is in a constant state of depression. Now he is making me depressed! Any advice?
Divorce is the inevitable option when a marriage cannot be fixed. So long as you and your husband are willing to work on the marriage to create progress, then divorce is not an option. But once no progress can be made because one partner or both categorically refuses to work to better the marriage, then divorce becomes an inevitable, necessary evil.
You have to try and inspire your husband out of his lethargy. Your husband has to work, first to support his family, second to earn your respect, third to earn his own self-respect. He sounds like he is rapidly deteriorating. You must try and get through to him before you seek a divorce.
As a child of divorce myself, I hate divorce in every guise. But, like a just war, it is sometimes necessary.
Do your best to lift your husband up. Don’t threaten him with divorce. On the contrary, tell him that you’re his loyal wife. And let’s hope that he’ll come to his senses, pull himself up by his bootstraps, and recharge his life, before he loses life’s greatest blessing, a wife who is a soul mate.