The following segment aired on The Balancing Act’s “The Balancing Act.” Joining the show were Joel and Kathy Davisson with important advice for struggling couples.
The Balancing Act: Well, listen to this statistic. According to divorceguide.com, fifty percent of first marriages end in divorce. Many couples call it quits after a series of problems. However, our next couple didn’t let their many marital problems destroy their marriage. Instead, they say they figured out the key to a successful marriage. So, please join me in welcoming this morning, Kathy and Joel Davisson to the show. Good morning to the both of you.
Kathy: Good morning.
The Balancing Act: Good to see you both. I want to start off with this, because when I was doing the research and background, you both admittedly called your marriage horrible.
The Balancing Act: That’s a strong word, what was so horrible about it?
Kathy: Behind closed doors, he was abusive. He was emotionally, mentally and spiritually abusive. He did have a few little, minor occasions of physical, but it was mainly that he would just put me down, criticize me, find things that were wrong and always looking for different things that he could pick on me about.
The Balancing Act: And you say this started after your first year of marriage.
Kathy: After the first year of marriage. Actually, we had a pretty decent first year. It started in the second year of marriage, when I would want to— get hurt about something and I would want to talk about something, he’d say, “no, we’re not gonna talk about it,” he would tell me to be quiet, shut up, you know, don’t talk, it wasn’t good.
Joel: This was quite the betrayal because when we dated, I wanted to hear her talk all the time. I’d say “I love hearing you talk,” then the second year of marriage: “be quiet, quit talking so much, leave me alone, quit harassing me.”
The Balancing Act: Right. Well, what changed then in that second year of marriage?
Joel: I didn’t have the maturity to handle being a married man. I was very immature. The first year was all fun and games, but then when it became day to day being a good husband—because I have to choose to be a good husband, not just because I got all this motivation ’cause I’m a brand new married man, I didn’t have the maturity to do it.
The Balancing Act: Right. Kathy, what was the lowest point? And you say there was adultery in addition to the emotional abuse and the mental abuse? Just three occasions of physical abuse, as well, we should say. What was the absolute lowest point for you where you said, “All right, listen, enough is enough”?