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When the One You Love Wants to Leave Paperback – January 1, 2005

4.2 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (January 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800787226
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800787226
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 4.3 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #377,122 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I received the previous edition of this book when my husband left 13 years ago. It was actually sent to me by my mother-in-law. It was a godsend. It gave me a framework to use to deal with my grief and gave me strength to overcome my emotional impulses and think rationally. I have recommended it over and over again throughout the years to friends and family finding themselves in this situation. I can't recommended it highly enough.
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I read this book within a week after my wife left me, and it helped me tremendously. Donald Harvey maybe oversimplifies things, but when you are going through the crisis, you want to know why this is happening and what to do. Not all of the "why" questions will ever be answered, but this book helped me make some sense of what was going on, why a spouse leaves and what to do and how to do it. Most of the time if someone leaves a marriage it is the husband and just to make it easier to read he refers to the spouse that has left as "he" or the "husband".

I am afraid that I must disagree with the Rev. Dr. Daniel J.G.G. Block's review of the book. I'm a pastor and I reccomend it to every pastor I know to have for a reference and to give to someone who is facing this crisis. You will never know what it is like unless you've been through it. I've been through it and this book helped me very much.
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Format: Paperback
A few months ago my wife told me about her affair and desire to leave. Since that time, I've read a number of books telling me how to save my marriage and survive infidelity, even if my wife didn't want to stay married. I tried all sorts of things to keep our marriage together, some of them "guaranteed" to work.

But as this book says, the truth is that when the one you love wants to leave, all you can do is let them go. It's the hardest thing in the world to do, but the author does a great job of helping you understand why it's so important, both for your own sanity and as the only course that will give your marriage any chance of surviving.

As a man whose wife is leaving, the convention in the book of placing everything in the context of a husband leaving his wife was a minor issue. The author explains this convention in the preface, and I can't think of a better way he could have written it, but that is my only complaint. I really appreciated his references to the Biblical basis for this course of action, his very practical and realistic advice, his constant reminder that the marriage might end after all is said and done, and his keen insight into the details of the situation I'm in. The author isn't promising to work miracles, he's just telling you the way things are, and that's nice to hear.

A few of the points in the book were especially helpful to hear. It was comforting to read that folks who are "pulled out" often talk like those who have been "pushed out", blaming a majority of the problems on the faithful spouse when the reality is that they are yearning for that "something sweeter" outside the marriage. It was also good to hear that they can act so calm, cold, and rational because they are acting almost completely on emotion.
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I found Dr. Harvey's book to be helpful. In essence, Dr. Harvey explains the three basic reasons men leave women. My husband's departure seemed to fit neatly into one of those categories. Then Dr. Harvey explains that a woman's three options when her husband chooses to separate are to divorce him immediately, pursue him (often tempting, but rarely successful) or to give him his space with no contact beyond what's absolutely necessary. I'm currently trying the latter approach in the hope that my husband will realize that leaving our home for a studio apartment isn't as peachy as he thinks. I think I'm making a good decision, and this book helped to give me the framework and strength to make it.
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Format: Paperback
A very good book about the steps to take when your mate has walked out on you. This book has given me a new appreciation for the so-called "conservative Christian" ministry: This guy is really smart and sympathetic, even to a fellow like me who is not a believer. Briefly, he admonishes you that it takes two to make a marriage, so it is important to take care of yourself first by setting up some protective measures when your spouse has left you. The book's main drawback (for a man) is that he addresses himself entirely to women (always speaking about the "husband" who has walked out, rather than the "spouse," or "mate"). But I got a lot out of it, nevertheless, and recommend it to both men and women. It may not save your marriage, but it might save your self-respect and your sanity.
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When my husband told me he was having an affair I was devastated. My whole life was falling apart. Then I found this book and started reading. Unlike other books that explain a lot but don't give much practical advice on how to deal with your situation, this book actually gives real practical advice. I would call it a 'First Aid Kit'. It restored my sanity. It helped me a lot to deal with my emotions and to start taking control of my life again. Nothing can really take away the pain an unfaithful spouse inflicts on their mate, but after reading the book you will at least know that all the chaos and emotions you are experiencing are normal. Thank you, Donald Harvey!
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