he says he loves me very much and works every day to think of me- put me & the kids first and to be aware & do things for us yet, it's never good enough. WH said something about how it's such a change because I'd never needed so much before and then I lost it crying and I said, in the past I didn't ever doubt your love, I knew you had my back and I could trust you with everything. Since that's all gone and now I doubt everything- I need more I somehow need to believe & feel that he does love me, that he is sorry and understands my hurt, that this won't happen again, that he's willing to work with me forever to make us better.
We must be married to the same person!! My WH is so unromantic and I've never needed him to show me because "that's just him"...I knew he loved me. Now, I need those little things and I don't want to have to ask for them, I want him to do them...but I'm not sure he is capable. I know that I cannot go back to the way we were because now I question if he really loves me or doing the "right" thing to protect him and his family. He is really trying, but I keep waiting for the bomb to drop so any little thing upsets me.
Learning to let go is the most difficult and the most beneficial thing you will ever do for yourself. I spent many years trying to run both my own life and my husband's. All it did was piss him off, make him resentful and make me crazy. It can't be done and it shouldnt be done.
Seriously, try to focus on just yourself and your own actions. Get Melody Beattie's The Language of Letting Go and read it one day at a time as it is meant to be read. Put together a daily routine for yourself that includes meditation and journaling time and exercise time and stick to it. Ask IC for specific -- very specific -- steps to take in focusing on yourself and follow them. It's difficult but really rewarding. I promise.
I read two really simple, but remarkable studies about two months ago that have changed a lot of the way I interact with people. In one, the researchers took a youth bowling league and split it into two groups with equal numbers of men/women and equal ability levels. They told both groups they were going to videotape their bowling and have a team of expert bowlers critique them. One team received both praise and criticism. The other team only praise.
Both groups improved their bowling scores, but the group that received only praise had a much higher increase. When the researchers went back a few months later, the imrovement had lasted only in the praise-only group. The praise/criticism group had reverted back to its original scoring levels.
The second study essentially replicated the first but using factory workers.
I bring this up because I think it has a real lesson for us all in dealing with our spouses and the other important people in our lives. Once we have made it clear what we want from them, criticizing is far less effective than praise for getting good results. If you are like me, and I know a few of you will enough to know that you are, pointing out the flaws seems critical. But it isn't. That is a false belief.
If you want to encourage a behavior, make it clear what you want and then praise it when it occurs and leave the criticism behind. I think it's made a huge difference especially in how my family is functioning.
[This message edited by BorrowTrouble at 11:20 AM, December 21st (Sunday)]
I know this is where I need to be too. BUT, (I'm full of buts today) how can we find joy when such a large part of ourselves is our marriage, future, family, etc. It seems really difficult to somehow separate yet connect the 2.
BT gave this wonderful answer to this awhile back.
(Unfort, when I lost my old name, I also lost all the quotes and pm's that I had saved. )
Anyway,(BT please forgive me if this comes out wrong), she stressed the importance of finding our own selves - Our self that is not bound only to being someone's wife or daughter or sister or mother, our very own woman.
I know for me, this is difficult. I have always been a people pleaser. I have always been who people wanted me to be (the good DD, the good W etc), and I ended up now at the age of 36, reliving my adolescence by trying to find the real me.
You may not be that extreme, but maybe its something you can look into. Finding you again. I know our friend FNF is also the proponent in bringing our own happiness to ourselves, and that has been a huge inspiration to me.
Did that make sense?
If you want to encourage a behavior, make it clear what you want and then praise it when it occurs and leave the criticism behind. I think it's made a huge difference especially in how my family is functioning.
Thank you for sharing that. BT.
I have noticed that my children are afraid to make mistakes (like me ). They have become wary of my reaction...and that saddens me...cos it reminds me of me growing up. I feel like an ogre. I dont want them to be like that, and I dont want them to see me like that.
I thought I was doing things differently, and whilst I know that I am in many ways, in other ways I obviously am not.
Mind what you love. Mind how you are loved.
Get Melody Beattie's The Language of Letting Go and read it one day at a time as it is meant to be read. Put together a daily routine for yourself that includes meditation and journaling time and exercise time and stick to it
I will add that book to my list of need to read. My IC gave me "Co-dependent No More" for 3 weeks so that has taken the priority. Can I add another "but"? LOL- re: the daily routine....I work full time, WH works 50-60 hours/week, we have 2 little ones that I pick up from daycare 3 days/week, and a house to maintain. Time to myself is nil- very difficult.
Additional note on the praise- I teach parenting classes where I work and we've learned that it takes 5 items of praise to offset 1 criticism. (I think 5-1). So, it's pretty significant.
D-day 3/4/08 Whole "truth" from OW 3/12/08
Ow#1, 6 months PA
Ow#2, 2 years PA & EA
"It takes 3 seconds to say "I love you", 3 hours to explain it, & a lifetime to prove it".
I had the same reasons you do for not doing for myself and not disengaging. You know what finally turned me around? My IC saying to me that "nobody was ever going to make me a priority until I did."
It was true. Trust me on this as I trusted her. Pick one activity a day that will be truly beneficial -- maybe exercise? -- and set aside a half hour daily for yourself to do it. It's a small start but will make a big difference, I swear.
BT - I read about a study that was done years ago when they took KIDS ( ) and did this. They were of the same intelligence after testing, they split them into two groups. One group was told how smart they were, what a success they would be, etc. The other group was told how stupid they were and how they would never amount to anything. Not only did it reflect in their academic performance but when the test subjects were tracked down AS ADULTS the two test groups were radically different. The test group that had been praised was significantly more successful, happier, etc. The group that had been criticized were far more likely to have faced difficulties with additions, bankruptcies, arrest, etc.
Really, really amazing and it infuriates me that some doctors messed a whole group of kids up that badly!
I read about a study that was done years ago when they took KIDS
I cant believe that the parents even consented to that.
I teach parenting classes where I work and we've learned that it takes 5 items of praise to offset 1 criticism
Reminds me of the poem, "Children Learn What They Live" poem.I had forgotten that.
Just wanted to make sure I got on here to wish everyone a Merry Christmas or Happy Holiday, whichever is appropriate.
I have a very, very tight schedule between now and Christmas and with DS home, we fight over computer time. I had to kick him off yesterday so I could file for unemployment! I have all 3 job today and I really should be upstairs showering to get to the first one. But since I stopped in, I read this last discussion with great interest.
LH2, I have that poem hanging on my fridge. Have ever since I married. My H's mother used to have it hanging in her kitchen. My H, a long time ago said he believed in that and yet, many times I had to point out his hypocracy in dealing with his own children. Somehow he felt he was "protecting" or "maturing" them by criticizing them.
It's also very difficult for me to hear any criticism from him. It DOES make me want to give up, but I tend to bounce back from it unless it piles on.
I saw a beautiful example of my H's "if it bothers you, pretend it doesn't" philosophy last night. DD and DS made cookies while I was out shopping yesterday. They failed miserably. Neither could figure what went wrong. So I asked a few questions and found out the cookies were 1 c light on flour. DD was running the mixer and DS was apparently doing the measuring. Only she swears she told him 2 cups and he said she said 1.
In the argument that followed, DD said "I hate being told I'm wrong when I'm not" . H said "don't let it bother you, I don't." Her response was "that's just the way you are... you don't feel anything. And you ALWAYS think you're right, even when you're not." He said "just tell yourself you don't care."
Wow. And he's the guy who will argue to the death if he says something that's wrong OR right.
We had a knock down the other day. Of course I "designed the fight to ruin his Christmas". All I did was ask if he thought the gas bill was a little high this month. Of course that meant I hadn't been listening to him for 3 years, about anything because he TOLD me the gas bill was high in the winter. This is the first year I've been responsible for paying the bills since we reassigned our "duties" in 2004.
I'm having a tough time finding time for myself around this time of year, but BT is right that when I do, I'm much more focused on how I feel rather than who's right or wrong. I HATE not being right, but at least I'll back down when the argument gets to a point it's going nowhere. When I spend the meditation time or go to the gym or read, I lose the focus on always being right.
Try and take even 15 minutes before bed to go to a quiet place and think good thoughts. The daily "Letting Go" book is excellent. The entries are short but thought provoking. Maybe read an entry and write a journal entry of your own on what you can do to make the suggestion happen. Even thinking about a positive solution to a small annoying problem can change your attitude.
The only issue I have with the postive reinforcement is that my H doesn't believe me when I say anything positive about him or to him.
I told him "thank you for sharing that" when he told me about his IC appointment the other day. His response "stop being so patronizing". So I guess he's getting his positive feedback just by my NOT criticising. Really, really hard to do though.
Anyway, off to work. If I don't make it back by the 25th.... Everyone enjoy and find some joy in the day.
Try not. Do or do not, there is no try. -- Yoda
Her response was "that's just the way you are... you don't feel anything. And you ALWAYS think you're right, even when you're not."
Wow...your DD certainly has H pegged. I bet that must have stung him a little.
I am glad you are doing well and staying focused on you. Yay!
I have this inner determination not to let any of this LTA crap take away my love of the holiday. So far, I seem to be succeeding.
You rock FNF!!!
Just look at you soar. I am so proud of you.
There is an IMAGO workshop nearby at the end of Jan (I made enquiries again after being inspired by our Shirley). I have been waiting for the right time to bring it up. YEsterday I asked H what he thought our biggest problem was, and he answered without skipping a beat, "Communication".
So I asked him what he thought of the Imago workshop (he knew it from before when I tried to get us there as well as from the workbooks). He said he needed to think about it and would get back to me today. So fingers crossed.
Welcome to all the newbies, and I miss the rest of you's.
I know that I should come by more often. I think about it and then don't, and for really stupid reasons!!!
My R with FWH is going beyond great! I know that there is alot I could share that would maybe be helpful, but truthfully, if I'm being honest, I guess it's because I felt like what I had to say wasn't of interest... and I felt like maybe it was because we were doing so well, so fast!!!
This next year I am going to come and hangout a little more frequently. Spreading a little happiness is a good thing, so I will see you's in the new year!!
I am woman, hear me ROAR!!
What you accept, you teach!
Me 53, WS 54
Reconciled for life!
DD 24, DS 27
and set aside a half hour daily for yourself to do it. It's a small start but will make a big difference, I swear.
I can do 30 minutes to myself every day, that's totally possible. Thanks again for the thoughts. I ordered the book today off from Amazon.
I've been thinking lately about WHY it's so hard for me to let go and the only thing I can come up with is the shock of the whole thing and where that leaves me. Do I just move on & let WH do this to me again? I know he still needs to do his own work.....what am I trying to say here.....every time I try to look at the positive and run with it- I'm thrown back onto but WH did X, Y, and Z. And those things hurt me more than I had ever imagined. I will forever be hurt & changed by this and my husband was the one who hurt me so much! The feeling of moving forward with your M, but not knowing/trusting who your married to. The issue of not respecting him because of what he's done. I guess really what I'm saying is that it seems really hard to find acceptance to allow myself to move on. How can I move on with myself and M if I haven't found acceptance yet? Am I making any sense?
WTG FNF!!!! Hope your holidays are splendid!
How can I move on with myself and M if I haven't found acceptance yet?
It seems like that should be the correct order, doesn't it? You find acceptance, and that allows you to move on.
In fact, it is precisely the opposite. By moving on, focusing on yourself, letting go of the desire to control him and his decisions, you find acceptance.
I realize this sounds like new age mumbo jumbo and it's maddening in many ways, but it is also true. You need to do what is counter-intuitive here. The more you are able to focus on yourself rather than him, the beter off you will be.
It may be the he will continue to be an asshat and in that case you won't want to stay in the marriage. But if you let go of the urge to control him and his actions, you may find that he does the right things. People almost universally fight control, and it is a killer to relationships.
After d-day, most every BS wants to put their WS in a vice to ensure that he/she does not continue to do such hurtful and terrible things. And that is understandable and probably necessary. But it is not a way to live indefinitely. Eventually, we have to teach ourselves to let go. To set our boundaries and enforce those and allow that to be our protection.
It's hard, but it's the only way to freedom for ourselves. Freedom from obsession, freedom from pain, freedom from trying to live someone else's life rather than our own.
But if you let go of the urge to control him and his actions, you may find that he does the right things.
And this is my stickler....so what if he does do the right things....he's hurt me- possibly destroyed me, our family, our M. Mr. Liar, Mr. Betrayal, Mr. Cruel & Heartless may do everything wonderfully but should that matter? Why should I accept it and allow him to move on? Why should I just bow down and allow him to move on with the happy life he's always seen in his head while fucking around? I have no way to know it's genuine so it's really all just a gamble. I always think in my head that I'm getting the short end of the stick.
I'm really struggling here with this. I want to let go and just be happy.....but I can't. It seems too scary right now.
There is no shortcut...everything in its own time as your body and your mind and your heart all process what has happened.
Just going through the processes, as you are, is you moving on.
As for acceptance, that too will come...in time. I am 2 years out and whilst I get what happened intellectually, my heart still struggles. I think about it every now and then, and my heart physically aches so much that I will myself to stop thinking about it.
I think BT means for now, focus on you and what can heal you. The more you heal and reeover, the closer you will get to accepting.
Just take care of yourself for now, Whatnow. Thats all that matters.
Thinking of you, my dear friend.
I have been really busy getting us ready for:
1) Christmas Eve dinner/celebration (that would be later today and still not done )
2) Leaving tomorrow morning for 10 days with the whole family for a warm and sunny vacation in the caribbean!
3) shovelins snow, more snow, and yet even more snow!!
I have been hanging out mostly in F&G trying to stay in a good mood as I am feeling triggery around the holidays. I don't have much to add except I hope everyone has the best holiday possible.
LH, I'm right there with you. Intellectually I can tell myself a thousand "reasons" for his infidelity, but my heart doesn't get it at all. Heck with "Mr. Communication" I don't even know if my intellectual explanations are really even close. I have no way of knowing what it was all about other than his "we weren't having sex" which he's made very clear as being his main reason. Oh, he understands it was wrong, but my mind also tells me he had a grand old time while doing it... and it was spiteful too. I don't know that I can ever accept that he deliberately did this... it wasn't a "fall into it" or "perfect storm" situation. He set out on this course with forethought. And it had nothing to do with not wanting to lose me if I found out. He was pissed at me the whole time. I think what I have to accept if I'm to continue in the M is that he is terminally broken and he will continue to make horrible, deliberate, spiteful choices. And I will accept that if he does, I will leave. I won't be hurt like that again. I won't live like that again.
Take care everyone. Enjoy the day, the food, the company, our children, our pets... whatever brings you comfort and joy.
FNF Ė Rotten time of year for you, hope you got through the day and left those triggers behind.
Hello to the newbies, sorry I havenít been around to welcome you in to this corner. Thereís a lot of comfort and support here, donít feel shy about asking or speaking out on just about anything. Weíve heard it all!
LostH, Happy Christmas in your new home!
Shirley, Have a great time, wish I could join you! UKg2 is in Barbados with her mum. Her H was supposed to be going to, but since he decided to vacate the marriage Ö.. Sheís still broken up, but better there in the sunny Caribbean than here in the cold and wet.
WN, LostH is right, youíve done exceptionally well so far. I reckon we all get doubts at this time of year. Fuckwit FWH who sat in the doorway so he could nip out to text/call/coo with MOW feeling like the cat that got the cream.
And I still canít let go. I donít know who Iím married to, apart from some jerk who never emotionally left his first love all during our 29 years together.
Things havenít been too brilliant. Of course his version of doing Christmas stopped with a Christmas eve/day/boxing menu. So Iíve been chasing my tail. He sent out three cards (which I posted), I did all the others. He bought a few fillers that I sent him out for today. I bought and wrapped over 30. I rewrote the menu to cover 10 days, wrote the shopping lists, did the shopping. Although he did prepare and cook dinner yesterday while I was out collecting the goose order, cooked meats and a top up at the supermarket. I wrote out the last of the cards and got DS4 to go round and post them for me. DS2&4 did the decorations while I was out doing the big shop a couple of days ago. H helped when he wasnít working. I did not get the business stuff done which was supposed to have been done to catch the bank this morning. Actually I didnít even start. I reckon a full dayís work is stashed in a pending folder. Iím just about frazzled to a crisp. And yes, I AM mad about it.
H has gone out for a drink with a golfing buddy. He asked me to go along too. Looking like this??? Uh, no thanks. Anyways, still got the dinner to prepare and clear away all the wrapping paraphernalia thatís all over the dining room. And get a shower cos I didnít make it to the gym again. I could either nip in here and catch up or gym, no time for both.
Have to get myself dragged upright and out of the pity pit.
Oh, and I have booked my cosmetic surgery for 10th Feb. New boobs and tweaked face coming up! H was supposed to have booked a holiday, as he has done for the last three months. Still hasnít happened and I have told him I need 6wks before travelling. The idea was to go away in January while he still has carry over holiday days. Oh well. Should I be sorting that too?
Sending love to each and every one of the Tribe. Iíd be a total basket case without you (as it is, Iím just a bit of one!) XXXXX
[This message edited by UKgirl at 10:48 AM, December 24th (Wednesday)]
DS1 has a German gf he met and shacked up with while he was on his travels in Australia. He (and DS2) came back home in Sept. The gf came over and stayed for a week in Nov, missed her flight back home and so stayed for a few more days. DS1 decided he didnít want her to come over again. So I told him to tell her straight it was over. She said (apparently) that she wanted to come over for DS1 to tell her to her face that he didnít love her (trigger BIG time, exactly what MOW said to FWH before she turned up on my doorstep). She showed up last week. I said to FWH to have a word with DS1 and give him some advice. Know what he said? Let her down gently, donít be brutal, when she goes to XXXX university (in Germany) it will die a natural death. WTF????? Excuse me, Mr Prime Fuckwit, that is EXACTLY what YOU did and look what fucking well happened!!!!! Tell her it is OVER. Take her off your phone and stop talking to her for TWO hours at a time. Delete and block her on Facebook. Delete her email. Go NC. Instead of which he was sleeping with her, taking her out, kissing and hugging her when they said goodbye. Aaarrgghhh! DS1 is 24, not 16!
It must be in the genes.