July 2nd, 2009
09:23 PM ET
5 years ago

Jenny Sanford speaks out

Jenny Sanford released a statement Thursday about her husband’s affair.
Jenny Sanford released a statement Thursday about her husband’s affair.

(CNN) - Jenny Sanford, wife of South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, is speaking out in a new statement about her husband's affair.

"Mark showed a lack of judgment in his recent actions as governor. However, his far more egregious offenses were committed against God, the institutions of marriage and family, our boys and me," Mrs. Sanford said in a statement. "Mark has stated that his intent and determination is to save our marriage, and to make amends to the people of South Carolina. I hope he can make good on those intentions, and for the sake of our boys I leave the door open to it."

Full statement after the jump

Statement from First Lady Jenny Sanford

Columbia, S.C. – July 2, 2009- The last week has been very painful for me, my family and for the people of South Carolina. However, throughout this terrible ordeal, the incredible outpouring of kindness, support, and prayer I've received from countless friends and folks I have never even met has been truly uplifting. I appreciate that more than I can say. Please know that my sons and I are doing fine, given the circumstances. We are surrounded by friends and family, and we will make it through this. I believe it is how we respond to the challenges we face in life, and what we learn from them, that is most telling about who we truly are.

There is no question that Mark's behavior is inexcusable. Actions have consequences and he will be dealing with those consequences for a long while. Trust has been broken and will need to be rebuilt. Mark will need to earn back that trust, first and foremost with his family, and also with the people of South Carolina.

The real issue now is one of forgiveness. I am willing to forgive Mark for his actions. We have been deeply disappointed in and even angry at Mark. The Bible says, "In your anger do not sin." (Psalm 4:4) In this situation, this speaks to the essence of forgiveness and the critical need to channel one's energy into positive steps that uphold the dignity of marriage and the family, and lead to reconciliation over time. My forgiveness is essential for us both to move on with our lives, with peace, in whatever direction that may take us.

Desmond Tutu said "forgiveness is the grace by which you enable the other person to get up, and get up with dignity, to begin anew." Forgiveness opens the door for Mark to begin to work privately, humbly and respectfully toward reconciliation with me. However, to achieve true reconciliation will take time, involve repentance, and will not be easy.

Mark showed a lack of judgment in his recent actions as governor. However, his far more egregious offenses were committed against God, the institutions of marriage and family, our boys and me. Mark has stated that his intent and determination is to save our marriage, and to make amends to the people of South Carolina. I hope he can make good on those intentions, and for the sake of our boys I leave the door open to it. In that spirit of forgiveness, it is up to the people and elected officials of South Carolina to decide whether they will give Mark another chance as well.


Filed under: Extra • Mark Sanford
soundoff (285 Responses)
  1. Shayne in NH

    I don't care! I love you Michael!!!

    July 3, 2009 01:00 am at 1:00 am |
  2. Annie

    IF your husband publicly declares that the mistress is is soul-mate..help him pack and wish him well..It never feels good to be "second-best" especially when you're supposedly in a marriage...WHO ARE YOU KIDDING, MRS. SANFORD?

    July 3, 2009 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  3. Terey

    The children ,their boys are the losers here....too bad the wife dont see it.

    Not a good example for 4 boys...it says...it's ok to cheat on your wife.

    I thought for once we might have had a 'politicans wife" who had some backbone and would kick the rotten ,no good, lier out of the house for good!!!

    But, NOooooooooooo she's like all the rest!!!

    July 3, 2009 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  4. SLA

    I dunno, does anyone else think they are perfect for each other?

    July 3, 2009 01:05 am at 1:05 am |
  5. Laura S

    She's a fool!

    July 3, 2009 01:06 am at 1:06 am |
  6. Carrie

    Some of you don't seem to get it. Their marriage, like many unions, though perhaps once based on love, is probably about life-style. She does not need him to love her. They are enabling one another to live this life style. She is making these statements to gracefully respond to the media so that she can get on with her life. It's "damage control".

    July 3, 2009 01:07 am at 1:07 am |
  7. Jennifer

    In every relationship of my friends and acquaintances where one partner has strayed, the other was not without some blame for the failure of the relationship - he/she was a workaholic, withheld intimacy, ignored the other's pleas for conversation/counseling, spent all of his/her free time otherwise engaged, became distant and inconsiderate, etc. All of Jenny's statements place 100% of the fault on Mark, and I agree with the other posters that she does come across as self-righteous and dictatorial, not acknowledging for a second that she may have contributed in some way to the problem. Sure, he's the one that went outside the marriage and that's a sin, but she needs to do at least some self-analysis to see what she brought to the table. If the tone of this statement is representative of their personal life, I begin to understand why he was looking for warmth, affection, and some escapist fun.

    July 3, 2009 01:22 am at 1:22 am |
  8. CJG

    There is no marriage to save, he is pining for his soul mate , only wants wife and the kids to try and revive a career! If he were fooling around with any and every thing is one thing, loving another and saying publicly he is going to try to fall back in love with his wife , is a slap in the face to her ! Glad she is not all pained and pious next to his side but OMG , take him back into her life as a loving hubby is ridulous and just not possible .
    When I had to face a cheating husband privately , was bad enough and with one who had to gall to say "those women meant nothing to me , I love you " I just could not stand to look at him and even after 23 years feel nothing for him , no way can they get it back so do not even try!

    July 3, 2009 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  9. Kev

    She was probably a rotten wife and thought of the kids and herself as the "family", excluding her husband. The typical divorcee who feels that "entitlement" to be a stay at home home mom taking care of the kids being her only responsibility. Typical "loser" soccer mom type.
    Reality check....they should get divorced and the kids shouls go with the father, the parent who can actually support the childen, both emotionally and.....and..... financially. Let's get rid of these moms who's only experience is in babysitting. We (us dads) can do it all, we don't need any financial support, we can take care of our children emotionally, financially and socially.
    Get rid of the "deadbeat mom".
    -Kevin Dowd
    Plainsboro, NJ

    July 3, 2009 01:25 am at 1:25 am |
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