Medicating for me began to be eating and and, and I remember even dealing with, you know, some pornography issues and I began to abuse alcohol. That was my medication. Yeah. It was my temporary satiation for pain.
We believe that the best gospel that you can live and exemplify is one that is of a healthy, thriving. But that has not always been our story. I couldn’t keep up with who I pretended to be the shame overshadowed and masked reality. This marriage is off. I want a divorce. I began to abuse alcohol. I was overwhelmed with rage here. I am a pastor preaching sermons that are supposed to set someone free, but yet I felt bound myself. You don’t have to live in the pain that you’ve been living in help was so close. It was so close. Join us. We unravel our story of addiction, redemption and triumph in our marriage. This is our story.
Hey everybody. We are Jimmy and Irene Rollins, and we are excited that you decided to journey with us through this marriage story.
That’s right. So we wanna welcome you to episode one. You know what, Jimmy. Why don’t we just talk a little bit about how we met first? Absolutely. It’d be great. We met on the job on the job.
Yep. And I remember I walked into this interview. I didn’t even need to a new job. Yeah. But I’d met someone who wanted me to come in and interview and I was like, okay, let me go entertain this new job. And when I walked in, I saw you and you interviewed, did you fall in love immediately? No, I did not.
Okay. I thought you did. I , you know, there was something really different about you. Yeah. And you sparked my interest. So I remember being at my cubicle, right. We were both it technical recruiters. Mm-hmm and we had to call a lot of people for jobs. And I had decided that one of the phone calls I was gonna make was to my sister to tell her how sick of dating I was, and that I had just broken up with my boyfriend.
Yeah. And I remember telling her that I was looking for male companionship, just friendship. Yeah. And I literally hung up the phone and lo and behold, it was me there. You. Standing next to my cubicle looking fine. Tucking in your shirt. I was a Tucker back then. Yes. You were Tucker. Yes. It takes male spanx now to keep all of that in but anyway, I remember you asking me out and I was like, I don’t date my coworkers, man, but, okay.
Cuz you again had sparked my interest with, you had talked about God in my interview. Yeah. so I literally, our first date, it was like a whirlwind. Yeah. You remember the sparks flying? It was amazing. It really was. And I just can’t believe like we’re here now, but thinking back to those days, it was so like, it, it began amazing.
Mm-hmm and I remember like when you walked in the office that I could like hear music plan, it was like a slow jam. Like I was like, oh, I was like, that girl looks good. I remember on our first date. Yeah. You sang to me in the car and I was like smiting from that point. Yeah. Can you give us a little bit?
Well, I wanted to sing a slow jam Uhhuh because I wanted to kiss you that night but that wasn’t the kind of worship, you know that I was allowed to sing. So I sang as the dear Panther for the water. So my so long is after the you alone are my heart desire and I. Two should the and tears started flowing down.
Yes. Your face. So I could not believe it. I had never experienced that a moment like that with another human being, where it was like the presence of God showed up. Wow. And I felt closer to you than I’d ever felt to anyone in my entire life. Wow. And I remember poking you in the shoulder. Come. So I can poke you.
There you go. And I said, , I love everything. That’s different about you. Wow. Because that the fact that you had boundaries yes. Told me that there was something different about you. We went really, really fast way too fast, way too fast. Yeah. So we met in October. We were engaged in December and married in June and it was a whirlwind romance.
We left our secular jobs. Yes. And started serving at mom and dad’s church or parents’ church. And literally popped out three babies. We had a lot of issues yeah. That we didn’t know we had, we didn’t know what we know now about like family, you know, origin issues. We didn’t understand like, you know, how we.
We were living out, you know, marriage of how we viewed marriage. Yeah. Or what we had seen our parents or, or lack of mm-hmm can you remember like our fights? Like they were bad. They were bad. Yeah. I mean, our, we had normalized dysfunction. Yeah. Would you say, yeah, so I did, we didn’t know how to have a conversation and resolve conflict and we had three kids.
Yeah, we had a marriage that we didn’t prioritize and the pressure of ministry, in addition to the dysfunction that came from our pasts. Yeah. Like it all reared, its ugly head and kind of the pressure created a bit of an explosion and I would. Say that that explosion hit. I was probably in my early thirties.
Yeah, by that time, between 30 and 33, the church was a couple years old and we, the pressure of ministry and the weight of it. Wow. I don’t think either of us anticipated.
No, I just remember mm-hmm you know, that the pu pit mm-hmm Jimmy was different than the home, Jimmy. Yep. I remember that the meeting staff meeting.
Jimmy was not the same, Jimmy that was at home. Mm-hmm on the couch, you know, and that medicating for me began to be eating and mm-hmm and and I remember even dealing with, you know, some pornography issues. Yeah. Here I am a pastor mm-hmm here I am a leader. Yeah, here I am a father and a mentor.
Mm-hmm preaching sermons that are supposed to set someone free mm-hmm but yet I felt bound. Yeah. Myself and I began to abuse alcohol. That was my medication. Yeah. It was my temporary satiation for pain. But do you remember babe, like. It was so crazy how I wasn’t aware. Yeah. Neither addiction. Neither of us were.
So when I, I abused alcohol in my childhood, got saved, started popping out babies and you know, probably early thirties went on vacation. We decided to have a margarita. Yeah. And that was the beginning of trouble.
It was like this trigger. Yeah. That I remember even before that we were called in the, you know, tag team preach.
At a marriage conference. Mm-hmm and I remember trying to read books real quick on how to do yeah. Marriage. And I remember going to this conference and we were taking a picture in front of a step in repeat wall. Yep. And after they took the picture, I went behind the camera to like, look at the picture, you know, and I was like, that’s fake.
Yeah. And that honestly, they called us into a marriage conference. We had no business, absolutely going speak. We needed to be in the conference as a participant. Exactly. And I feel like thinking back on those days, like God trying to get our attention. Mm-hmm that, Hey, you don’t have to. in this prison.
Yeah. You, you, you don’t have to live in the pain that you’ve been living in. Right. And, but yet I was more concerned about preaching in front of people. Mm-hmm I was more concerned about being behind the pulpit, not on the other side of the pulpit. Mm-hmm I was more concerned about giving ministry than receiving ministry.
Yeah. And looking back on those days, I, I really wish. We had hit the pause button earlier. I agree. I’ll never forget being at, at a pastor’s deal. Mm-hmm , you know, we were at they had this like round table and our daughter, Kayla mm-hmm she texted me and she said, Hey, mom’s sleeping in the bathroom and I said, text me a picture of it. Mm-hmm and she texted me a picture and you were you’re passed out in the bathroom. Mm-hmm you didn’t mean to, and I looked at the picture and I just says, oh, she’s just asleep. And to look to think about the dad who would not come home and attend to her feelings. Wow.
Next time on the Two Equals One marriage podcast.
That was my MO. Deny pain, numb and stuff, pretend, disassociate from my body. And as a survivor of sexual abuse. Now I realize where that came from and why I did that.
Yeah. It’s not healthy.