Post # 46
gilsgirl: “She is getting to the point where I worry she will try to seduce him or something, and I feel like maybe I should stop her somehow.”
First of all, no one can be seduced or talked into cheating on their spouse if they don’t want to, and no amount of involvement from you will change how things go down. Your pastor and this “friend” are both adults and you should stay out of these personal situations.
Also, She confided in you so she will obviously know its you if you tell anyone and she can possibly turn the story around and make you look crazy- especially because your pastor is involved in this. Do you really want to get involved in hers and possibly your pastor’s marriage drama? I would let it unfold whichever way it does and let them deal with it. It’s non of your business and i wouldnt want that kind of responsibility in these issues.
The only way to handle this would be to talk to this friend directly. Help her get help for the abuse and tell her that maybe it’s best to talk to an outside professional that hopefully could help her see things more clearly.
Post # 47
What an incredibly difficult situation you are in. To me the biggest issue here is the deceitfulness of your friend. I would express concern for the way she is choosing to go about decieving people and how not only is that behaviour fooling people who genuninely want to help her but she is also fooling herself. I would suggest you tell her that as a friend who cares greatly for her well-being you would suggest she gets some professional help (not the pastor) to deal with her deceitfulness and come clean. If she refuses to do this and continues to carry on the ruse with the pastor and others in the church I would, as pp’s have suggested go to her with someone you trust and respect and confront her again. If still nothing changes, I would inform her that you are going to speak to the pastor about it. Good on you for caring so much about your friend and wanting to do the best by her, I wish you all the best in managing this situation.
Post # 48
I totally agree with your plan of action and wish you the best of luck. I think you’re doing the right thing. Hopefully the pastor and church elders can help this woman get the help she so clearly needs. Please keep us updated!
Also, other posters, please read the updates before commenting!
Post # 49
I definitely would tell the elder of the church and be pastor together! And then you don’t have to worry about it and they can set up some guidelines with helping the church as a whole by not allowing her to manipulate it. I’m sure the pastor and elder would be able to help those in the congregation not be lead astray by her and get caught in her lies! I mean this: say she was to keep the story going and the women of the chuech speak to the elder about wanting to help her even more (based on her lie of an abusive relationship), the elders can confide in the women that the church has offered her help that they saw fit and many others have offered as well and at this point they suggest that the women give her some space so she cane make the decision on her own. That way these women have an “answer” from the elder that doesn’t really out her but really saves them from all her manipulative-ness! I really think the higher uppers should know so they can protect the sanctity of their church and hopefully help this women. The elder knowing (not just the pastor) will also be good so the elder can help the pastor in appointing someone else to deal with this lady instead of putting the pastor in a position where it would look like he’s handing her off to someone else or pushing her away. The elder will be able to direct this woman to someone else for help and hopefully she doesn’t fall in love with that person to. I feel so bad for this lady’s husband and it sounds like she is an emotionallay abusive woman so hopefully he has a better head on his shoulders!
Post # 50
This is very dramatic.
I don’t speak from the observant christian perspective, so I hope I can still answer. I think that telling the pastor and head leadership is a good idea, so long as you do it in a way that makes clear you’re not gossiping. Perhaps you could write them a letter. I also hope that you offered your former friend help finding a therapist, if she is open to recovering. I agree that she did somethign astoundingly horrific and immoral, but it shows that she has serious, serious problems. I understand not wanting to continue the friendship, but I do feel that you should show her a path towards healing (but then don’t get sucked in – you can help arm her with the resources she obviously needs, but you shouldn’t allow yourself to get sucked into actively trying to “fix” her).
What a crazy situation
Post # 51
Your friend does not need to be shunned by her pastor and church (however misguided and misplaced her affections are at the moment). What your friend needs is some good old fashioned psychiatric care and meds. You see your friend is SICK, not a sinner, but mentally ILL. I agree with the previous poster who recommended that you gently alert her husband to the fact that his wife needs psychiatric help ASAP.
Post # 52
I just got home from my meeting with the pastor and head elder, and although they were very shocked over the fact of my friend’s deception they both agreed she should be helped rather than shunned. The pastor told me that he’d actually had several moments of doubt concerning the abuse stories during the times he was counseling her, but couldn’t figure out until her confession of love to him this morning why she might be lying about abuse.
He said he would get in touch with a friend of his who is a Christian therapist and also a woman, and ask her to meet with my friend if the friend was agreeable, and the head elder is going to reach out to my friend about this tomorrow to see if she is willing.
My part is done, my conscience is clear, and hopefully my friend will get the help she needs. I am taking a full break from her until I know she’s seeking to really change her behavior, but will praying for her every day.