Josh and Susan Powell
Chris Detrick/The Salt Lake Tribune/AP; Amber Hardman/AP
04/30/2012 at 03:00 PM EDT
More than a year before her disappearance, Susan Powell considered filing for divorce but worried that her "crazy" husband Josh would view it as "an act of war" and retaliate, according to newly released e-mails.
"It feels like a never-ending cycle, but I'm too afraid of the consequences: losing my kids, him kidnapping, divorce or actions worse on his part, if I take a stand on one of his ultimatums," she wrote on July 5, 2008, according to The Salt Lake Tribune
Around the same time, she also shared that she'd "written a sort of will in my desk b/c at this point, I don't know what to think anymore," according to another e-mail reported by The Deseret News
The newspapers say the e-mails were sent to co-workers, friends and members of the couple's ward of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
A source who shared the e-mails with reporters shortly after Susan's December 2009 disappearance
, asked that they not be published while police investigated the case, in which Josh was the only named person of interest.
On Feb. 5, Josh killed himself and the couple's two sons
by blowing up a rental house after the boys were delivered for a supervised visit. In the weeks following, police and other sources revealed previously undisclosed evidence
Although Susan expressed fears, she also often seemed hopeful that he could change.
"I want him in counseling, on meds, I want my husband, friend, lover BACK no more crazy, outrageous, outlandish beliefs/opinions," she wrote on July 11, 2008.
"I'm sure if he fixes himself, everyone else will see a much closer version of the guy I married," she wrote. "And it will be easy enough to forget the hell and turmoil he's put me through."