122: Debra Wallace | Hope After Betrayal Trauma

Debra Wallace | Hope After Betrayal and Trauma in Marriage

Debra Wallace | Hope After Betrayal Trauma

Debra Wallace knows what it feels like to do a Google search in the middle of the night and not find the specific help she’s looking for.

Her personal experience and example of perseverance through her own husband’s same-sex betrayal uniquely equips her as the ideal author to encourage hope and healing for readers—while serving as a resource for churches, family, and friends.

She’s written on the topic of betrayal trauma for many outlets, including Tribal, Red Tent Living, and Faith Storytellers.

As a speaker and consultant, she’s presented on that topic and opened her life and heart to serve small groups and large gatherings of women with questions about betrayal trauma. 

She is engaged with the Counseling Team at Oakhills Church to bridge the gap between the church and those suffering from betrayal trauma.

ADOH trained, she is a peer facilitator for groups with a trauma-informed approach.

Serving at Be Broken Ministries as Wives Care Assistant, Debra is passionate about helping women, never wanting anyone to walk this road alone.

Eager to share her knowledge in book form, Lord willing, she will release When the Glass Slipper Shatters in 2021.

Debra Wallace joins Amber to discuss the betrayal she experienced in her marriage, how Scripture memorization gave her strength and courage, and how she ministers to other women experiencing betrayal trauma.

Questions Debra and Amber Discuss:

  1. (3:54) Briefly share how you came to know Jesus. 
  2. (4:27) Take our listeners back to your life as a new wife and mother.  How would you have described your family?
  3. (6:34) 10 years into your marriage you discovered your husband was leading a double life.  What did you discover and what was his response?
  4. (9:56) You stayed married for years after discovering the betrayal.  Did you husband stop?
  5. (13:15) How long did you stay in this relationship with your husband before you finally said, I’m done?
  6. (15:17) What were your conversations with Jesus like during those 12 years?
  7. (18:13) When did Scripture memorization become crucial to your recovery?
  8. (21:39) When do you get to the point where you break your silence, and begin to realize there are a lot of women living through betrayal trauma?
  9. (25:42) You work with women who have been same sex betrayed. Have you found that community to be very large?
  10. (27:11) If there is someone listening who is thinking she is describing me and I need help, what would you like to say to her?

Hope After Betrayal & Trauma Quotes to Remember:

“The first 10 years of my marriage, I would say were blissful.”

“We had been married for 10 years without any major conflicts, but in a matter of a few seconds…my world came crashing down. I was in the bathroom putting her [daughter] hair up in a ponytail and he had left his phone in the bathroom. It buzzed. We both looked at it…I just had to read the text, and I knew exactly what was going on.”

“I brought him the phone and I asked him what was going on.  He denied it….I would have loved to have believed it was a mistake, but the evidence was right there. I demanded to know the truth, so he confessed to having same sex affairs.”

“In my mind, all this could mean was divorce….A few days in, he said, ‘I will do whatever it takes to keep our marriage together, to keep our family intact. I want healing. I want to recover from this.’ He immediately went into counseling, and it took me a while to just absorb it all.”

“It was like riding a roller coaster of hope and despair. I believed my husband when he said he wanted healing and recovery, but each time I realized another betrayal had happened we had to start rebuilding trust  and forgiving again.”

“The first verse I claimed over myself was Proverbs 31:25, ‘I am clothed in strength and dignity. I can laugh about the future.’  At the time, I was not strong . I was very weak. Dignity? I felt like a doormat. I knew I was a doormat and I couldn’t do anything about it. I felt helpless.”

“I did feel unloved and alone during those 12 years.”

“A husband who chooses to view porn or cheat on their wives usually has issues long before ever getting married. I had to learn that I wasn’t the cause of my husband’s issues. I had to learn I’m responsible for my own actions, but not for what other people choose to do.”

“Over the 12 years, we tried every possible avenue for healing.”

“They challenged us to memorize two scriptures per month, which is not a lot, but at the end of the year, you have 24 scriptures you really know.”

“I’m just here to encourage and validate women and hopefully provide some hope that whether a marriage succeeds or not, if you have a relationship with the Lord, you can have joy again.”

“There’s all different kinds of betrayal, but it still just as painful. It doesn’t matter what kind of betrayal, if it’s porn use or prostitutes or same sex, whatever it is, you still have the same kind of healing that needs to take place.”

The 4 C’s to realize before healing can begin:

  1. Cause: She is not a cause.
  2. Control: She can not control. It is up to him to seek help for his issues.
  3. Cure: She can not cure him.
  4. Choose: She can choose her own healing.

Scripture References

Resources Mentioned:

Related Episodes:

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A husband who chooses to view porn or cheat on their wives usually has issues long before getting married. I had to learn that I wasn't the cause of my husband's issues
'm just here to encourage and validate women and hopefully provide some hope that whether a marriage succeeds or not, if you have a relationship with the Lord, you can have joy again.
The first verse I claimed over myself was Proverbs 31:25, "I am clothed in strength and dignity. I can laugh about the future."

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