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180 with no financial strain?

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blakesteele posted 8/22/2013 21:53 PM

Can you do 180 without financial strain as part of it? Meaning will it have an affect on a WS that is a stay at home parent if they don't feel any new financial strain associated with the 180? Wouldn't that be more like a vacation from have all the benefits of an income without any of the work (physical or emotional)

We are Dave Ramsey such we are debt free and have a nice savings.

How do I do 180 within my marriage when my wife will not feel any financial strain....wont have to pay $400 for 6 months car insurance, $60 for internet phone, $$$ for counseling sessions, buy groceries at will, etc..?

I am still married. As such I feel I have a duty and I also have a desire to honor that....but, given that my wife can still enjoy the lifestyle she has (SAHM, part time self-employed)...will 180 really be effective?

From where I sit I see her getting exactly what she desires....all of the lifestyle minus the conflict issues between her and I.

Add to this my desire not to disrupt my daughters lives any more then we have....

Anyway, am I just making excuses here or is there a way to make 180 work?

I am talking to an consultation, not retaining one. I want to see what my legal pitfalls I have to avoid if we get into a divorce process.

Anyone in a similar position?

I am worn out and tired....1 year right around the real gameplan to deal with the antiversary, wife just as tired and defensive as I am.

God help us all.

[This message edited by blakesteele at 10:11 PM, August 22nd (Thursday)]

Bubbleup posted 8/23/2013 07:36 AM


First off congratulations on being debt free. Gently speaking, if you're goal is to financially starve your WS in order for her to 'feel' some pain you might have your priorities mixed up.

In my opinion a 180 in your situation is optimal. If she does feel pain over your 180 it's more related to the emotional (rather than financial) implications of losing you.

Of course there are countless other doubts you'll encounter whether she decides to re-commit or not but at least one component of your equation can be cancelled out.

Hope this helps.

Knowing posted 8/23/2013 08:37 AM

If you want to impact your wife's lifestyle/finances then D is for that. The 180 is for you to detach, detach, detach... Life goes on as "normal" except you distance yourself, turn all your attention inward, really start taking care of yourself emotionally by implementing all the suggestions in the 180 including ceasing MC (what would seem to be implied in #19).

[This message edited by Knowing at 8:39 AM, August 23rd, 2013 (Friday)]

brokensmile322 posted 8/23/2013 09:20 AM

Hi Blakesteele!

I am a SAHM and although I am the BS I think I can give some insight.

Yes...the 180 is for you emotionally. It is for you to detach, get strong, get to the point when and where you could divorce/move on if that is what is needed.

The 180 will of course happen while you are still married, so yes, she will still have her 'lifestyle'.

Sometimes the 180 will snap the WS out of it and into action to save their marriage. But that only comes from them seeing the emotional distance etc...

A divorce will more than definitely change your wife's 'lifestyle'. She will most certainly 'feel' the pain of the economic bite. She will also feel stress over child care and possibly having to look for full time employment.

Sometimes, I have seen where the WS has left and the BS has cut that person off financially. No more phone, credit cards etc... That has also been an economic wake up call.

You sound like you are perhaps reaching the end of your rope. Maybe you don't know what else to do. You may be hoping that the 180 will snap your wife out of it. It may, but it may not.

I know you are really, really trying to save your marriage. You should be commended for that. If you have done all you can, the 180 might be a good choice. If she snaps out of it, maybe you will finally have a solid foundation from which to start building. If she doesn't, then I guess you will know where she stands.

Peace to you Blake steele!

bionicgal posted 8/23/2013 09:47 AM

Hmm. I never thought of the 180 as being a tool for financial stress. Of course it is, but I am wondering if you see your wife's attachment to you as being largely financial? Because I would think that what she would miss would be you, and your support, and you working on the relationship. Your engagement.

If you do withdraw (which is what I see 180 as - a controlled withdrawal), you could always set a time line. I will do this for X months. If it doesn't pan out, I'll file for D or separate. So, if she really just does want a "free ride," then she'll only get X months worth. Not a long time in the scheme of things.

Because really, who wants to be with someone who is only there for financial security? But, it may take her some time to get clear as well, and maybe you disengaging will help - I don't know.

[This message edited by bionicgal at 9:49 AM, August 23rd (Friday)]

wincing_at_light posted 8/23/2013 10:00 AM

On D-Day, I told my wife that she was done freeloading and I expected her to finish school as quickly as possible and start working full time.

She'd been a SAHM for a decade up to that point -- and in the event that we divorced, I wanted to make damned sure that I wasn't going to be shoved into a financial pit due to salary inequity. More importantly, so many of her complaints about my lack of presence in the marriage were rooted in the fact that I was at work, sometimes working more than one job, to make her being a SAHM financially viable. It was obvious to me that she needed a bit of education on the 40+ hour work week in order to appreciate what *I* was sacrificing to maintain her lifestyle instead of just taking it for granted.

Let me tell you: it didn't take long after she started working 8-10 hour days for her to start to appreciate that I jumped straight into cleaning up the kitchen and putting dinner on when I walked in the door.

...and I wasn't actually doing anything differently than I'd done before. She just had a new perspective on it.

blakesteele posted 8/23/2013 11:34 AM

Hmmmm a bit embarrassed about my original post. I already knew 180 was about me. I guess I thought it as a tool to break a WS out of the affair....since my wife is not into her AP anymore and has been pushing us to re-engage I thought it not an option. I know now that it is..

Thank you for the kind but earnest nudging.

I am just really not where I want to be....would love to walk my girls to school and pick them up occasionally. I want to forgive my wife and really R our marriage. Both of these are not happening due to lack of courage inside me. And it frustrates me.

Your thoughtful responses are a welcome action to me. Thanks!

God be with us all.

[This message edited by blakesteele at 4:42 PM, August 23rd (Friday)]

bionicgal posted 8/23/2013 11:46 AM

So your wife wants to engage? Then why the 180?

Blakesteel, I think you have to take your life back. Walk those girls to school. Forgiveness. . well, that will happen when it happens, if both of you are working hard.

What do you have to lose by being courageous? It might hurt to see the AP, but you can do it. I don't knowingly put myself in the AP's way if it is going to be a small group or I/we would be forced to interact with her (can you believe that in our town we had a public yoga class and 4 whole people showed up -- me, my husband, and.. .you guessed it, the AP and her friend. I did leave that one. But, if there had been 30 people? Why not.)

Or, better yet, why don't you and your wife pick the kids up together, hand in hand?

ladies_first posted 8/23/2013 14:10 PM

I am just really not where I want to be....would love to walk my girls to school and pick them up occasionally. I want to forgive my wife and really R our marriage. Both of these are not happening due to lack of courage inside me. And it frustrates me.

1. Talk to your boss/HR department about starting later one day a week (or whatever you can negotiate that contributes to your authentic life.) Warning: Walking to school during Chicago winters is not a Disney-esque movie! Don't know about central MO.

2. Talk to your wife about getting a (full-time?? part-time??) job as a "consequence" of her affair.


LA44 posted 8/23/2013 15:00 PM

blakesteele, I am so glad I read this.

What is up my friend?

Who encouraged me when it was time to tell my parents? You did!

Who gave me some solid words after the run in with my angry niece? You did!

Who was right there afterwards with positive comments and words that made me feel proud for freeing myself of this "secret"? YOU my friend!

You are SO courageous. You must know that. Every week I read posts from you in which you have delved into a thought that challenges you and pushes you towards being a stronger person, great husband, superb Dad. So you are not at forgiveness yet. Okay. As bionicgal wrote, it will happen if you both do the work. Yes! And if your wife is not doing the work then perhaps it is time to detach.

So you walk your girls to school! To hell with the AP. We are all walking with you! And I know when I go to that conference next month and see the AP for the first time, I KNOW you are going to be giving me strength.

God help us all as you would say, Blake. But may you feel the strength HE has given you.


bionicgal posted 8/23/2013 15:59 PM

LA...that brought tears to mt eyes.
We all ARE walking with you, BS.

blakesteele posted 8/23/2013 17:04 PM

LA44....had to turn away from my office door as I read your post to me. So very kind of you....luckily I just had to answer an co-workers question to me from my door with a "yes" and he left. (((LA44)))

Bionicgal...wish I were bionicman....just dont trust myself to act in a way that I would want to model for my girls yet....I am sooooo not refined and composed in that situation. But I do appreciate the words of encouragement and compliments!

You both support me more then is warranted...thank you.

With regards to my wifes part time business...I cant mention specifically what she does...but she has a gift that is unique...and is very special to those she works with. I don't want her to stop that...I believe it is has benefits beyond cash flow. I am extremely proud of the work she does. I believe we all of at least one "spiritual gift"...not saying what my wife does specifically is her "spiritual gift" but it is special...and does make a positive difference in others lives.

Our original goal was to grow this business into a full time gig once our girls got into school. This was just about to happen when she had the affair....and the both girls going to school may have had a nudging affect in her decisions to step out on us. I am hopeful we can continue on with that is very much a joint goal...started as one and I would like to see it remain a part of our lives.

Make sense?

We don't need the cash due to our committment to no debt and a modest lifestyle and my good job.

The selfish part of me still wrestles with how her affair got started....and I know this is not right, that busy, stressed people have affairs too (ala Presidents)...but her affair was so tied to dropping our kids off at school, then having a large block of the day unaccounted for...her AP in similar situation....though it appears to me she was not his first and he is trailing another woman now.

I really enjoy my job, I enjoy being the main supporter of my family...I just feel like I was taken advantage of. IC has shown me that I actually WAS aware that something was wrong...I was just so damn trusting and ignorant. IC has pointed out that I am no longer ignorant...and that I do need to start trusting again.

Trusting my instincts and trusting my wife has really gained wisdom and reduced her ignorance as well.

I am still meeting with an consultation...have many questions...not excited about this but am going into it as a fact finding mission...not a positional mission. My wife met with an attorney early on...during her fog...

Anyway....thanks again!

God is with us all.

blakesteele posted 8/23/2013 17:07 PM ask why 180?

I dont know for sure. It ties into HOW I engage I believe....very intent, looking for clarification on many fronts. I need to practice project creep containment....I can do this at work effectively, but at home I start with one topic...and creep to others...until I dont even know what I am wanting to do with the conversation.

I am still really nervous about this disgust rolling from her AP to my rage did. This is where I lack courage. I really was not honorable during my rage phase...and it still bothers me.

But maybe 180 is not right...she is finding the MC for us, she is asking that we find a new way to engage. She does not know how, neither do I....

Just really not patient with her, nor she with me.

But, even yesterday which was tough....she offered to make me dinner and did not rage at me. I was not hungry and thanked her for her effort.

I need to sleep better, I need to stay with exercise. Both help me out.

Thanks for the support.

[This message edited by blakesteele at 5:09 PM, August 23rd (Friday)]

IRN2006 posted 8/23/2013 17:48 PM

The selfish part of me still wrestles with how her affair got started....and I know this is not right, that busy, stressed people have affairs too (ala Presidents)...but her affair was so tied to dropping our kids off at school, then having a large block of the day unaccounted for...her AP in similar situation....though it appears to me she was not his first and he is trailing another woman now.

My DH is quite similar to your wife, works part time. Except, he is a recovering SA, knew about it before we married, and simply "forgot" to tell me. So, yeah, he was using his time at home to get high on my dime.

It seems as if you have anxiety over your wife's being able to fritter away her time. Maybe your wife doesn't need to work, but maybe she can volunteer. I have three kids, two of similar age to yours. Not only do I work full time, but I also am a scout leader, team rep, room mom for my kids, and volunteer in other ways at our kids school. I also volunteer in church.

Maybe your wife needs some hobbies? I think everyone should have hobbies. Lots of places have knitting groups, quilting groups, book clubs, etc.

But, it sounds like in order to feel safe in the marriage, you need your wife to do something productive with her time. I'm not sure you can tell her "work or else,", but I'm betting the two of you could sit down and brainstorm things she can do that speaks to her and gives her some accountability and lessons your anxiety.

I know for about the first 18 months after D-Day, I needed my h to be more transparent. It helped when he got out to do activities that I could eventually verify. To me, it helped his credibility more than just saying "Oh, honey, after I got home from grocery shopping I cleaned for 2 hours and went on the computer for an hour."

Now, of course my DH was free to say "No, I won't do it." And, that would have been his choice. That would also help me make informed decisions about my willingness to stay or not stay in the marriage.

[This message edited by IRN2006 at 5:50 PM, August 23rd (Friday)]

Tripletrouble posted 8/23/2013 17:58 PM

Hmmm .... Interesting! I'm not sure I have much to offer that will help you, but let me show you the flip side. I had a career equal to my husband, but when baby #1 came I gave up my career and did part time random things for 13 years before reentering my profession. WH had the same degree as me and did the same job. Now he makes literally 5x what I do both working full time. So I spent all those years hustling diapers, carpool, housework, finances (we are also debt free, even the house is paid off thanks to MY discipline), school volunteering, meal cooking, etc etc etc while my earning power atrophied. Then I get tossed aside like so much trash and I will be the one who suffers greatly financially if we divorce. As much as I loathe what your wife did, please don't dis the SAHM roll as some sort of cushy lifestyle. I worked my ass off doing that job, and now I'm being punished for it.
That being said, I can understand your feelings that she is living off your hard work and I wouldn't care much for that either. Your posts are always good and I identify so often. Right now I am also wondering how long we can live in limbo and what it will take for me to feel sure of the way forward.
Don't let the AP steal anything more from you. Take your girls to school and enjoy the moment! And lastly, you are no coward. Attempting R is the one of the bravest things a person can do.

learningtofeel posted 8/23/2013 19:10 PM

blakesteele you are a HUGE HUGE help in these forums. I find myself looking for your posts because I know how wise they will be.

I'm really sorry to read about your distress in this thread, but it's also somewhat reassuring to see that someone as wise as you are also has uncertainties.

My IC told me back at the beginning, put on your seat belt, this is a roller coaster ride you didn't choose. Sometimes I forget that and expect things to start being smooth, but they aren't. Ups and downs, and ups and downs.

I hope you can be kind to yourself. We are pulling for you to find the path that works for YOU.

blakesteele posted 8/23/2013 20:51 PM

((learningtofeel)) Such nice comments continue. Thanks for pulling for me...I feel it...I really do! I say general prayers for all affected by adultery...but specifically mention members by their nicknames that I get to know on this site. God knows who is linked to it works!

I follow others on here for the reasons you state you seek my posts out...just never thought I had the comfort to offer others that I find here.

I have never considered myself wise...but have been tenacious since childhood....My Mom has told me from DD that my thoughtfulness and tenacity will serve me well on this journey. Noticed my own Mom didn't choose the words wise or intelligent to describe me!

Thank goodness for the anonymous nature of this website....Oh, yeah, I am also 6 foot 2 and get mistaken for Tom Selleck on a regular basis.

Thanks for the well has gotten me in touch with the humorous person I use to be most of the time...but is rarely seen anymore.

When I graduated college my favorite professor told me....

Blakesteele, there are 3 types of people in this world...those who are born smart, those who learn to be smart, and those like you...who will have to fake it till you make it!!

God be with us all.

[This message edited by blakesteele at 8:53 PM, August 23rd (Friday)]

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