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Goals for MC

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RockyMtn posted 8/18/2013 15:32 PM

WH and I are going to MC soon for the first time in months.

We went for about 6 months after D-Day 1. He lied to the therapist about the nature of the A...and also hid that there had been a preceding A.

MC was...fine. I did get a few positive things out of it for myself, mostly that her suggestions started my journey in yoga and mediation. We made some progress on the communication front - mostly setting boundaries around difficult conversations. I think we are calmer/fairer communicators overall - some of this is owed to MC, but a lot of it is our own individual work in our own personal ways.

We stopped going because of scheduling conflicts.

Then D-Day 2 happened. MC wasn't even on my radar. I'm a firm believer (now) that IC is far more important. And I hadn't committed to R anyway.

Now we're going. And my IC suggested that we outline really firm goals for what we want to get out of MC. To set the direction, especially since we've both had previous MC and 8 months of intensive IC. We're not newbies. We have the ability to walk in and set the tone, the goals (with input and guidance, of course).

For me, with the first MC - i just went in because I was desperate. Not necessarily to save the M (hadn't committed to R fully then either), but just to have someone listen to me, to him, and give us some sort of direction, even if I was in limbo. And so the MC directed - and we sort of hopped around and sometimes I didn't know what we were trying to accomplish. I'd rather that didn't happen.

What were/are some of your specific goals for MC? What did you hope to get out of it?

ETA: We'll probably do weekly or twice weekly therapy through the end of the year (it is covered by insurance and we've hit our max this year, so we're going to cram in as much as possible) and then back off to less frequency after the new year. Just to give you a sense of what we have to work with here, which is about 4 solid months.

[This message edited by RockyMtn at 3:34 PM, August 18th (Sunday)]

jjsr posted 8/18/2013 20:17 PM

My question from reading this is what is your husband going to do? He lied to the first MC and then had a 2nd A. What kind of work is he going to do if you go back to MC? I see the work you are doing but didn't see work he is doing in your post.

RockyMtn posted 8/18/2013 20:57 PM

To clarify, both As took place before MC. He did not have another A after I found out he was a cheater. My D-Day 1 was actually OW2. I was in MC with him under the premise that this was the only A. Rather, I found out on D-Day 2 that there was another A that preceded OW2 by about 6 months, so 2 As in a year and no one before that. So my D-Day 2 was not A#2, but "just" TT. We have not been in MC since then.

What is he doing? 8 months sober. AA. Weekly IC for that time, too. SI member. Remorseful. That's the only reason I'm considering MC.

jjsr posted 8/18/2013 23:15 PM

Then if he is doing what he needs to I think the two of you doing MC is a good thing.
I like the clarity our MC brings to things, plus I like the fact that he holds both our feet to the fire.
One of the things we wanted to figure out is how and why our marriage got the place we were at. It has helped us to understand and communicate better.

sisoon posted 8/19/2013 16:38 PM

In between sessions, we note issues that come up and that we can't resolve on our own. Generally we talk before each session and jot down the issues we want to discuss.

Lots of stuff comes from W's IC - she just tells me she wants to discuss an issue but doesn't want to tell me what it is. Seems fair - one of our uses for MC is to discuss things with MC's protection that we're afraid to discuss together, without MC.

Rebreather posted 8/19/2013 16:58 PM

Yeah. Goals. That would have been a good idea. We didn't have any. We went in saying we were in trouble and didn't know what to do about. Of course, the trouble was my spouse was doinking his girlfriend and I didn't know about it and yet I was like crazy bitchy all.the.time. Go figure.

So while I cannot recommend goals, I can offer what we got out of it that was the most beneficial:

We learned out to fight. We learned what happened to each of us, physiologically, when we had a problem to address. Very handy.

The MC had my back when the affair came out as to accountability, openness, transparency, etc. Helpful.

He helped us navigate seeing each other as individuals and not extensions of ourselves. Probably a common problem in the long married, and we needed to extract ourselves in order to see each other again.

Helped me find respect for him and his changes.

Helped me listen to him. I needed to make changes, period, unrelated to his affair. I learned to get out of my own way, lower some walls, and be able to let go some old pain.

I hope you find it a good use of your time, Rocky.

RockyMtn posted 8/19/2013 17:24 PM

Rebreather, yea, one thing we got out of the first MC is how to argue better. I know now how he feels when things escalate and vice versa. We still fight and not always the way we were "taught" in MC - but I find that I'm waaaayyy more willing to apologize and accept my role in the fight. We move on a lot more quickly.
And we actually learn something from arguments now.

One goal I have to address issues of control/power. I think that WH felt a bit controlled by me leading up the the As. Not because I intended that - but I'm outgoing, directive, etc. and also the person who handled finances, childcare (and he was lazy about those things). I think control/power plays a big role in As. Anyway, post-A, I want to have a healthy balance - and ensure that I don't seek out power NOW because I am the "faithful one" and I don't want him to feel he is powerless because he made shitty choices.

In between sessions, we note issues that come up and that we can't resolve on our own.

Good idea. But we did this with last MC and it felt like we spent the whole session on what came up that week - instead of on longer-range issues (the A, addiction, etc.) But I think it is important nonetheless.

[This message edited by RockyMtn at 5:25 PM, August 19th (Monday)]

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