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L4,

You're pretty familiar with my story. A year out- I still heard the same things you did. A year and a half out- I was still hearing "I don't love you". Although he'd say things similar to what your H would say too-- that there was nothing more I could do-- that I was a being a wonderful wife and doing everything I could, etc. And I'd get those horrendous "out of the blue" comments just like you do too.

Things didn't change for me until I turned things over to God, as Queenie suggested.

Quite frankly, I stopped caring so much. I started taking care of MYSELF, first. I realized that at that point I HAD done all I could. And the only other thing I COULD do, is forgive myself and allow the chips to fall where they may. So I did. Honestly, I have to say that at that point, I was ready to accept whatever happened to my M. If it ended, so be it. I didn't want it to-- but, I was ready to accept that. I was ready to accept that there was nothing more I could do. That the only thing that could possibly save us was H deciding that he wanted to give us a shot. That I had done all I could-- for a year and a half-- in the face of an uncommitted H-- and not even uncommitted, but outright counterproductive.

As my mindset changed, so did his. I think he realized that if he didn't wake up-- he WAS going to lose his opportunity. In my mind, I figured I would give up trying so hard, let the chips fall where they may-- and re-evaluate right about now. I began that mindset sometime in the late spring. I figured I'd give it 6 more months- and if nothing had changed, if he was still proclaming he didn't love me and was full of DJs and IBs... I was going plan B (I had talked to Jennifer about this-- a modified plan B of "I can't be around you until you give our M a fair shot and are willing to work on it and give it a chance")-- to protect myself.

It was amazing.. by sometime this summer, within a month or two of me CONSISTANTLY changing my mindset, taking care of myself first, and removing myself from ALL of his drama (whether he wanted to blame it on me and the A or not)... he started coming around.

Now our M is stronger than its ever been. Its not perfect, but for the first time in about 5 years, I can say I'm HAPPY with it. Not just satisfied... but HAPPY. And I think he'd concur. And even tho he thinks MB is a load of hooey... I've worked it in (in different terms) without him even knowing its really MB concepts.

The question is... L4... are you truly READY to turn this over to God and let the chips fall where they may? Only YOU can answer that question.

And its not a question you want to answer on a good day. Or on a bad day. It should be a decision that you think about-- hard-- for about a month, I'd say. I remember having days where I just wanted to give up and go plan D. Where I thought there was no hope. And then a day would come by where I thought "OK, well maybe I can fight a bit more"... and then more bad days, etc.

Come up with a plan for how you're going to shake things up and forgive yourself-- when you're ready.

And then let the chips fall where they may. The ball will be in his court.

E.





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Well, I think it matters what he is doing in terms of the ability to recover the marriage,L4. And, the things he is saying are , of course, hurtful and worng.
You mentioned he had a tough childhood where he was abandoned. I think that may be the distinction between your situation and some of the ones where reconciliation has been possible.
Bear in mind that he did not ask for or deserve his childhood abandonment. So, it is not like he is a lesser person than someone who did not have to struggle with this and was able to reconcile. He is dealing with more than just infidelity and, perhaps some of those frustrated with his ability to get past this might keep that in mind. He was an innocent child when he was abandoned and it scarred him.
I can relate to his situation, as my childhood was similar. I know that i am on the far end of the continuum in terms of ability to get past this. My first wife's infidelity from 15 years ago still bothers me and I have had to cut her out of my life as much as possible.
And, I think I am a nice guy. I love animals. I give homeless folks money when I see them. I pick up hitchilers. I am very nurturing to my kids and I have one fatherless boy from India who considers me to be his father figure.
But, I just do not think I would be able to get past my wife's cheating. And, I bet it is due to what I went through as a kid.
Anderson addresses this in that book.

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Originally Posted by Zelmo
Well, I think it matters what he is doing in terms of the ability to recover the marriage,L4. And, the things he is saying are , of course, hurtful and worng.
You mentioned he had a tough childhood where he was abandoned. I think that may be the distinction between your situation and some of the ones where reconciliation has been possible.
Bear in mind that he did not ask for or deserve his childhood abandonment. So, it is not like he is a lesser person than someone who did not have to struggle with this and was able to reconcile. He is dealing with more than just infidelity and, perhaps some of those frustrated with his ability to get past this might keep that in mind. He was an innocent child when he was abandoned and it scarred him.
I can relate to his situation, as my childhood was similar. I know that i am on the far end of the continuum in terms of ability to get past this. My first wife's infidelity from 15 years ago still bothers me and I have had to cut her out of my life as much as possible.
And, I think I am a nice guy. I love animals. I give homeless folks money when I see them. I pick up hitchilers. I am very nurturing to my kids and I have one fatherless boy from India who considers me to be his father figure.
But, I just do not think I would be able to get past my wife's cheating. And, I bet it is due to what I went through as a kid.
addresses this in that book.

Zelmo,
I think this perspective is very interesting. Would you be interested in starting a general thread on the topic of WS BS recovery and FOO abandonment? Something not focused on a single person (like you, or L4's husband), but the general phenomenon? I know there a lot of people who could benefit from that perspective.


((((L4))))
I don't have any specific advice. I think others on the board are better equipped than I in that area. But I'm sorry for struggle you and your husband are going through.

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"BS recovery", do you mean?


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Originally Posted by SugarCane
"BS recovery", do you mean?

YES!!! Thank you for catching that. Sorry. I'll edit.

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L4,

I am so sorry for your pain.

We are here for you.


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Originally Posted by curious53
Originally Posted by Zelmo
Well, I think it matters what he is doing in terms of the ability to recover the marriage,L4. And, the things he is saying are , of course, hurtful and worng.
You mentioned he had a tough childhood where he was abandoned. I think that may be the distinction between your situation and some of the ones where reconciliation has been possible.
Bear in mind that he did not ask for or deserve his childhood abandonment. So, it is not like he is a lesser person than someone who did not have to struggle with this and was able to reconcile. He is dealing with more than just infidelity and, perhaps some of those frustrated with his ability to get past this might keep that in mind. He was an innocent child when he was abandoned and it scarred him.
I can relate to his situation, as my childhood was similar. I know that i am on the far end of the continuum in terms of ability to get past this. My first wife's infidelity from 15 years ago still bothers me and I have had to cut her out of my life as much as possible.
And, I think I am a nice guy. I love animals. I give homeless folks money when I see them. I pick up hitchilers. I am very nurturing to my kids and I have one fatherless boy from India who considers me to be his father figure.
But, I just do not think I would be able to get past my wife's cheating. And, I bet it is due to what I went through as a kid.
addresses this in that book.

Zelmo,
I think this perspective is very interesting. Would you be interested in starting a general thread on the topic of WS BS recovery and FOO abandonment? Something not focused on a single person (like you, or L4's husband), but the general phenomenon? I know there a lot of people who could benefit from that perspective.


((((L4))))
I don't have any specific advice. I think others on the board are better equipped than I in that area. But I'm sorry for struggle you and your husband are going through.

Yeah, I could try that. I do seem to piss some folks off with my views , which are often not the party line. So, I could make it just a general type inquiry deal. There is a thread on different types of WWs. Makes sense that there might be some interest in discussing different types of BSs.
FWIW, in all the time I have spent reading stories, I can see that there is an undercurrent that the BSs that are more ready to forgive, are, somehow, bigger, more evolved people. I know it is not blatant, but I sense it is there.
But, I know some BSs that are kind, generous, humble souls that could not let this go. It's not that they are vindictive, dogmatic, judgemental etc. The coomon thread among these folks seems to be that they had a really tough time in childhood, particularly in the area of abandonment or disloyalty from a parent. They are really sensitized to this type of abandonment in their marriages. They were slow to open up and be vulnerable to their partner at the outset of their relationships, because of their trepidation relating to being hurt. But, they gradually let down their guard and became vulnerable.
So, when the WS pulls the rug out, it really messed them up a few standard deviations from what happens to a more stable person(and I know it is no picnic for anyone).

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Quote
Queenie, can you save me a seat next to you?
hug and my arms around ya... hug




BS 52, FWH 53, Married 1-1-84
D-day 5-14-07, WH moved in with OW
Plan A 9 months, DARK Plan B 3-17-08 until 3-2-09
WH and OW broke up 1-09
Started over 7-09
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love ya L4, I'm here too... is there a spare seat on the other side of you?

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I remember the first time I came to this site. It was before I registered and my hope was pretty much nonexistent at the time. My marriage of almost 33 years looked as if it was over at last. I hadn't given up yet and was looking for something to do to FIX it.

The first thing I noticed when the home page loaded was a banner running a flash presentation down the right hand side of the screen. It flashed over and over again things that made my heart seem to turn to lead.

I love you, but I'm not in love with you.
Too much has happened.
I don't feel that way about you.


I began to read threads in JFO and GQII. Over and over I saw the same lines.

I haven't been happy in ___ years.
We married for the wrong reasons.
We married too young.
We married before I knew who I really was.

I also ran across these lines:

This isn't about you, it's about me.
OM/OW has nothing to do with it.
If it weren't for the kids I'd have left a long time ago.
I never really loved you.
I've never felt that way about you.
I love you, but it isn't enough.

I had heard every one of these lines and more.

So then I knew that I wasn't the only one who'd ever been in the situation I found myself in. That situation at the moment was because of an affair, but I also realized something, maybe for the first time and that was the fact that though the affair was not justified, the state of the marriage prior to that affair was actually pretty poor and was at least 50% my doing.

When I got here I was looking for an answer to my questions, "What can I do to fix this?" "How can I make her see that our marriage is worth saving?" "What can I say to her that will make her want to stay married to me?" and a bunch of other stuff that was running around in my mind at about three times the speed of light.

What I discovered was that the answer to all of my questions had nothing to do with her at all. They all had to do with me. I'd been trying to fix HER when all I could really fix was ME.

Maybe for me it was easier than for most. I had long ago abandoned the concept of LOVE being magic or that there is only one right person for each of us out there and if we just find that person we will live happily ever after. I learned that the secret to a happy marriage isn't finding the right person but being the right person. (This was even my signature line for a time)

I went to the library and checked out a book and read it. The next day I read it again. The book was SAA and I read it a third time before returning it to the library, to be checked out again by someone else who was going through exactly the same thing I was. Pretty amazing as our town has less than 10000 people in it and the book was well worn by the time I got to it.

I also went to my own bookshelf and dusted off Boundaries, Tough Love, The Act of Marriage, and a bunch of other stuff that I had read in the 33 years we'd been together, but now held new meaning for me.

I researched addictions, NPD, BPD, brain function as it relates to feelings and emotions. If the feeling of love was a response to stimulus, I was determined to discover the correct stimulus to create that feeling in my wife once again. Our kids were grown. We had no kids to be the reason to stay together. I determined to find another reason and to not give up until I had exhausted every possible correction or solution.

As I read about the Three States of Mind In Marriage, I recognized at once that we had both been in Withdrawal for years and Conflict showed itself only occasionally. Intimacy was at best a once in a blue moon phenomenon. Time together was spent in silence for the most part and that only when neither of us could find something else to do.

We were about as far from each other as two people could get, even though we lived in the same house. I hadn't heard "I love you" from my wife and believed it for well over a year. I hadn't said it myself and meant it in about as long. We both had lists of resentments and things we were angry about that went back about as long as we'd been together.

I kept coming back to this notion of the Love Bank and how the feeling of love toward someone was based on what that person did to make us feel happy. Having this idea that it wasn't my job to make her happy and not hers to make me happy that was something I was having a hard time with. I had decided a long time ago that happiness wasn't going to be the reason we stayed together.

If Dr Harley was right, and I wasn't so sure that he was yet, then I figured that if I did certain things to cause the right response, that is, if I supplied the proper stimulus, then she would respond in a predictable way and the feelings she once had for me would return. She would love me again, not because of some magical thing that had brought us together, which was the presumption she was making as to being the cause of feelings of love, but because I was doing the right things...and NOT doing the wrong things.

About the time I found MB I was excited about what I was learning and like a lot of people in my situation I wanted my wife to know all the same things. I wanted her to know that we could love each other again. I wanted her to see that if we each worked on the marriage it could be not only saved, but could become a marriage that would give us both great joy and happiness.

Of course she wanted no part of MB. She read a couple of things that I printed out and gave to her, but only with halfhearted interest. She didn't get it, didn't want to get it and wasn't going to try to get it. She wanted to be happy and she wasn't happy with me.

It didn't happen overnight, but I kept focusing on what I was doing that was right, looking for signs that I had hit on something that was right and logging those things that clearly did not help my cause to make sure I didn't do those same things again. I began a journal where I wrote out my frustrations, my anger, my doubt and my fears. I wrote letters to her telling her what I wanted her to know, never letting her read any of them.

I stopped taking things for granted like the way I dressed. I bought some new clothes for myself. I fought the urge to buy other things that I could use to retreat from her further and began to buy little things for her as well. I purposed to make our every time together something that she would enjoy and hopefully remember fondly when we were apart. I stopped all discussions of our relationship. I do mean ALL of them, BTW.

I struggled to properly identify what her top ENs might be and kept coming back to FS as one of them. My job doesn't pay extremely well and one of her complaints for a while was that I spent too much time at work. I also remembered that when I worked an old job that paid really well but took me away from home for long periods of time, she was supportive but also lived as if we weren't married at all. She did pretty much whatever she wanted whether I was home or not. So THAT kind of job change wasn't going to work for me.

So with FS being one of her top ENs, it was something that I was actually going to not do anything about, at least for the time being. Instead, I looked at what I could determine were other ENs that she had and I thought of ways to meet each of these ENs as often as possible.

By now, I knew that the #1 Love Buster that I was committing was AOs. Oh, yeah, I told myself that if she would just___, then I wouldn't be angry and so my AOs were really her fault. Wait; wasn't that what MB said was the kind of justification that waywards used to justify an affair...

When I realized that one of her top ENs was FC, I was at first at a loss as to what to do. Our kids were grown and gone.

But we had this granddaughter who had spoken as one of her first words "Pawpaw" and her eyes lit up when I entered the room. I began to make sure I was the best Pawpaw I could be. I took her for walks and invited my wife to join us. Sometimes she went along and other times she did not.

I made certain I appeared confident and that my wife never saw me in my moments of doubt. I still had them, but I never let her see them. I basically became the best Pawpaw and husband I could learn how to be.

She noticed...

Boy did it make her mad...

All the bad things she hated me for, were overshadowed by all the things she admired about me and was attracted to. She didn't want to be attracted to me. She didn't want to love me. She didn't want me to be the man of her dreams. She wanted me to leave her alone to have her fantasy, which wasn't looking so good now that other people were pointing out that OM was pretty much a POS...

I started making it hard for her to not engage me. I invited her to do almost everything with me. If she didn't want to go fishing with me for the weekend, then I didn't go fishing that weekend. If she was going to visit her sister, then I was sitting beside her. If she wanted to have burgers for supper, then I fixed burgers that were the best she'd ever had. If she went shopping for groceries; I went along, pushed the cart, hunted down the hard to find stuff on the list and made myself indispensable to her the whole time.

I'd still not been told "I love you" by my wife...

But we were arguing about little things and not just whether or not to stay married.

Conflict was beginning to occur.

By the time I got sick in late November, almost 3 years ago now when I first noticed the spot on my ribcage, she was saying ILY in moments of weakness�

By the middle of January when it seemed possible that she might actual lose me to something the doctors had not yet identified, she was showing clear signs that she was thinking of me and my well being at least part of the time.

By the time the one year mark came around, I was just getting over my health problems, triggered badly at some things I found and was probably not the most loveable person she�d ever met for a few days�

But as time went on, things began to look like �normal� again and eventually we were back to where we�d once been, though still not where we needed to be.

But a few weeks ago when someone in our MB class at church asked about how we came to be talking about MB and Dr Harley�s material, she told the group of our marriage teetering on the brink of disaster, how I had found MB and began to change, how she had resisted at first and how today our marriage is the best it has ever been�.

Three years and change after we nearly divorced�.

Jim said to focus on you.

Others have echoed that sentiment.

You yourself have said that you need to work on your own stuff.

That�s really all you can do, L4. You can�t change anything at all about your husband.

But something is clearly missing from the equation. It�s been a year. He might not yet be committed and might not have any desire to love you, but if there is no improvement, then something is not right.

OTOH, if he acknowledges that you have changed for the better, maybe the cumulative volume has not reached critical mass. Maybe he�s still fighting to remain in Withdrawal to avoid conflict, and maybe the effect is not something he is yet willing to admit. My wife refused to love me. She didn�t just not love me; she didn�t want to love me. Loving me took away her justification for not living up to what she had to do. It destroyed her fantasy of me being the bad guy; her being trapped and made her have to face herself.

Three years and more later we�re still dealing with the aftermath of what happened and we still have long way to go, but we are in fact in a better place than any time in our now 36+ years together. But we got there not by fixing the marriage but by each of us fixing ourselves. We also got there by committing to fixing ourselves even if it meant that we�d never fix the marriage.

The big breakthrough came not on the day that she told me she loved me or the day she said that she was committed to staying married to me or any of those things. The breakthrough came on the day that I committed to fixing myself no matter what she did. I committed to focusing on only my own part of the marriage. She didn�t join me on the journey that day, but eventually began her won journey and once we were both learning to be the best each of us could be, then we found that we could start enjoying being together again.

What I�m really trying to tell you is that this notion that you have to fix your own stuff first is only partly right. You have to fix your own stuff, not just first, but no matter what he decides to do. The three things I beat into newbies that come here as a betrayed spouse apply, I think. Meet his ENs as much as he allows. Avoid all Love Busters, since any Love Busters will undo any progress you might have made and have no expectations of how he will react. It isn�t what he does or does not do that takes away your hope, it is what you expect him to do or not do not coming to pass.

If the affair had never happened, what would your marriage look like today? Would it look much as it does now? Would it be better than it is now? Would it be worse? How would it be different? Would it be different only in the fact that there would be no affair to deal with or would it seem different only in that you would be living independent lives, living in the same house but never really connecting? Isn�t that in part what led to the affair?

You see, for a BS who comes here to learn about Plan A the focus shifts from what the WS is doing to what the BS has control over. It becomes all about making a serious effort to meet ENs and avoid Love Busters while refusing to let the affair define them. Those who reach recovery discover that exactly the same process is what you do in recovery. You learn to meet each others ENs and avoid Love Busters while refusing to be defined by the affair and all the crap that came with it.

As it turns out, that is what a Marriage Builders marriage is all about. It is how a marriage should be and how it should have been all along. It is focusing on only what you have the ability to affect and those things are those things you have control over yourself. It is meeting each others ENs, avoiding Love Busters and only having the expectations that you will do your part.

Here�s the thing about Dr Harley�s Basic Concepts; if what he says is true, then meeting ENs and avoiding Love Busters will create a feeling of love in the person you are focusing your efforts on.

There are four parts to a Marriage Builders marriage:

1) Care
2) Protection
3) Honesty
4) Time

We show care by meeting ENs.
We protect our spouse from the one thing that can hurt them most of all and that is our own selfishness.
We learn to be honest in all things. We exhibit honesty not only as it relates to what we have done but also as it relates to what we will do, want to do and most of all how we feel.
We give of our time so that we might do those things that lead to feelings of love.

Three key components are required:

1) The policy of Undivided Attention
2) The Policy of Radical Honesty
3) The Policy of Joint Agreement

Without the first, we can�t meet ENs. The other two are designed to protect BOTH of us from selfishness and resentment.

If the theory is correct, then applying these three things should cause a person to fall in love with us. If they don�t there are only two possibilities. Either we are not doing some part of it correctly or they have closed themselves to any possibility of making it happen.

Are the right ENs being met in the right way? Have all Love Busters been dealt with and eliminated? AOs? DJs? SDs? IB? Annoying Habits? Dishonesty? Are you doing all that needs to be done and all that you can do? Are you actually spending time together, during which you meet his ENs? Is it enough time?

The 15 hours is for a marriage that is not in trouble and is already a pretty good marriage. 15 hours is what it takes to MAINTAIN a marriage not rebuild one. It is like a house. You can clean one in a couple hours per day if you don�t let it get out of hand. If you let it fall into disrepair then the work takes a lot longer. The longer it has been neglected the more time it will take to get it right again.

We neglected our marriage for over 30 years. We�ve been working on fixing it for about two, together for one. I worked on it from my side for a full year before that. It was about 18 months in before I knew for certain that I didn�t want to just call it a day. With any luck we should be able to get it about right in about 30 more.

Only you can know when you�ve done all that you can. Then you have to decide if you are willing to let things go any longer or walk away. What you have is not good enough or you wouldn�t have a problem. Do you think it can be good enough? (Not what does HE think, what do YOU think?) Are you done trying? If not, what else can you tweak, adjust, refocus, modify or change that might make a difference? (Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results isn�t just insanity, it is a waste of time and energy) Is your side perfect? Are you doing everything right? Is there anything you are holding back waiting for him to respond or have you given it your all?

No 2X4s. No beatings. No questions that require a certain answer. No advice beyond encouraging you to persevere.

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L4:

Glad your back.

Sorry to hear about your father, and your HS friend.

That makes all the rest of the things in yout life seem lower. I hope they get better.

You mentioned that Jim Flint's post really shook you. ANd the fact that others agreed with it.

THere are parts I agree with. I agree that there are things you need to forgive your husband for. You just posted so many things that he has done wrong in the past week.

You then note that he placed his hand on your shoulder, and allowed you to kiss his cheek. What other things has he done right?

Its Thanksgiving week. I am writing a list of the things that I am grateful for, and my wife is going to head the list.

My comment about "He Is" was not directed at you, it was directed at the other poster. Who seemingly can not forgive, and can not understand those who do.

Forgiveness is one of the hardest things to ever give someone who has hurt you. You don't have to forgive them. You can accept them. Acceptance is different that forgiveness. But with both, you remove them from your plate. You have so many other, more important things to worry about.

And you have to forgive yourself. With that, you will find it easier to forgive your H. You have learned much here from MB. YOu have reason to try to have a better life, with the understanding that MB has given you. I hope it is with your husband. He needs to make the choice. The choice to recover, accept, and forgive.

The best line from Jim? When he says he believes his wife when she says that she will no longer cheat.

That is a relationship that has changed dramatically from where it was pre-A.

Chin up, L4. Its always darkest before the dawn.

LG


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FWIW LG,
I don't think the comment about being allowed to kiss her H's cheek was a good thing. Lips are intimate, cheeks are meh.


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Originally Posted by lildoggie
FWIW LG,
I don't think the comment about being allowed to kiss her H's cheek was a good thing. Lips are intimate, cheeks are meh.
\

What type of cheek are we talking here?

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L4,

Just wanted to let you know that you don't have to answer point by point to everything that has been said. Some doesn't really require comment and some doesn't need to be addressed before moving forward.

The point of my long diatribe in case you missed it was that I was someone who heard the things that would normally make you just give up and move on. It was told that I wasn't loved, wasn't someone she wanted to love, that nothing I could do could make her change her mind...All the things that hurt so deeply. She thanked me for spending time with her, said she had really enjoyed our time together, got in the car and within driving 100 yards had OM on the phone, talked to him for almost 90 minutes and then soon after calling him again from work called me to tell me she wanted a divorce because she couldn't give him up.

It was when I stopped trying to fix her or the relationship and began to work on fixing myself, not just the things she wanted to be different, but things that I was going to need for ME to survive this crap, that is when she began to soften, be open to my thoughts and feelings and started to put her Taker back in the box.

There are probably numerous things you could do that would make YOUR life better. As long as they aren't things that could boil down to plain old IB, why not do them. Meet his ENs if he allows you to do so. Keep Love Busters at bay. Do it because it's the way we are supposed to treat our spouse, showing care and protection. Offer time and honesty as well.

If he gives at all, accept his offering. Take what he is willing to give without demanding any more. Even if he doesn't say he loves you, if you really love him do the things that say that you do. If he does things that say that he loves you as well, then that is your answer. If he says constantly that he doesn't love you, not after prompting or being asked but simply says that on his own, then maybe it's time to let the consequences play out. Sometimes you have to be willing to lose something to really understand that you must hold it with an open hand in order for it to have any real value.

When a beautiful object is locked away, it loses it's meaning and value. If it is held onto so tightly that it cannot be enjoyed and appreciated then it becomes worthless.

We had this old cat when our granddaughter was learning to walk. She loved that cat. She would chase him down or surprise him while he was napping and squeeze him so hard his eyes would bulge. He'd snarl and growl and hiss and drive her away. But when she'd lay down and go to sleep on the floor or on the sofa or even in her bed, the cat would be right there beside her or even laying on top of her. When the poor old thing had reached the end of his life (he was 17 when he died) she wasn't in the house that night. But he died curled up at the foot of her bed.

Mark

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Thank you, everyone, for your concern and support and for keeping me grounded. Especially your advice, E, Queenie, Curious, Mark, and LG. (Are you glad I saved you a seat with us, ST?) Thanks for the email, JT.

For the record, when I wrote about my feelings for Jim's and subsequent posts, I wrote it so y'all would know the reasons why I disappeared for a spell. I had some real soul-searching to do as far as what I was getting out of MB. Is it helping or hindering me? A very dear and smart MB friend spoke with me and walked me through the post to help me understand how I might have misunderstood Jim's meaning and intent. Correspondence from other valued MB friends also helped.

No need to apologize, Sere, though I appreciate your sincerity and concern. I had the power to ask Jim exactly what he meant (hi, Jim) but chose not too as there were more important things around me that needed attention. There were most certainly elements of the post that did hit me as true with every read -- things that I know I need to do. There were also lines that frustrated me because of how they read to me and for the reasons I mentioned. This has passed.

Originally Posted by lildoggie
I don't think the comment about being allowed to kiss her H's cheek was a good thing. Lips are intimate, cheeks are meh.
Him checking on me and touching me were, as LG suggested, things he did right. Offering his cheek was, as Lil suggested, meh. H doesn't kiss me much and this was in fact the topic that lead to one of our historically uglier fights. (I think we've discussed this before here.) The fact that H doesn't want to kiss me hurts. He says I'm a good kisser so I don't get it. And I've told him this several times. It's not just a post-A thing either. Been since just a couple of years into the M. In this instance after his showing concern, I thought knowing how much kissing means to me that he wanted to kiss me to complete his show of concern. Him instead wanting me to kiss him on his cheek took away its sincerity -- not that whole interaction's sincerity but the ending of it. And it was the one above his neck, Zelmo.

I'm reading everyone's posts and praying and keeping busy. H and I are getting along well. We're making decisions about the holiday weekend and even being a bit silly with each other. The morning snuggles continue. (Have I mentioned how much I love that time?) These I see as good actions. It's the LBs (which have been very few since Saturday) that take it out of me. Having ENs fulfilled are most certainly critical for me, but I've found it's the LBs that affect me more then anything.

Thank you for letting me know, Mark, that I don't have to answer point by point. You know me way too well. I probably won't answer your posts in much detail nor anyone else's -- at least not for a bit. They have great meaning to me and I'm reading and re-reading so please continue the discussion. I'll pitch in as I can between the upheavals at my jobs, getting ready for the holiday with family (we'll be out-of-town), hosting Cousin for another day, and making pie.

I do want to mention one thing right now, though. Mark, when you wrote:
Originally Posted by Mark1952
Even if he doesn't say he loves you, if you really love him do the things that say that you do.
Sadly, the first thing that popped in my head was, "If he keeps up some of his behaviors, I'm worried that I won't love him any more. I really love him today. But what if that changes? I certainly don't want it too." I'm not near that point. And I don't want to get near to near-that-point. So I need to find a way to protect myself, heal myself, forgive myself, and love myself while still being completely here for H and being loving to H.

I'm working on it.

As I just touched on, I find when the LBs are gone I can deal with my less-then-perfect situation much better than when the EN fulfilling is gone. Today we're enjoying each other's company and H has even been a tad bit frisky. I encouraged him to carry things farther, but he hurt his back and said he's worried he'd do more damage. I told him I could work around his lack of mobility but he didn't accept the offer. Maybe later. (A girl can hope, right? wink )

We're home together today because there was a big shake-up at the executive level of my main job yesterday. Our offices are closed while the shake-up is shook-out. In addition, this morning I learned of monumental changes in the training I'm leading next week per client request at my contract job. I need to work-out to get rid of some of the WTF? thoughts I'm having about the jobs. 'Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change...' right?

I am reading most everyone over here in IR. I'm not taking time to post much and I hope you understand why. But I continue to follow your stories and the advice that you're giving and being given. I care so much about many here.

Has anyone heard from ottert? How about Mike_C2? I might have to ask over there on SAA -- a place I'm spending very little time in. (Except for you, Queenie. I love how your life is reading.)

Well, I gotta eat lunch, do a conference call, then work-out. (I'm officially down 6.8 pounds according to Jenny.) Thanks for your words, thanks for the splendid advice, and thanks for supporting H and me.

I have much to be thankful for.


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It was a nice post from Mark - quite soothing I thought. Pleased to have had a seat.

The cat bit made me very sad though.

kiss

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Originally Posted by Mark1952
L4,


We had this old cat when our granddaughter was learning to walk. She loved that cat. She would chase him down or surprise him while he was napping and squeeze him so hard his eyes would bulge. He'd snarl and growl and hiss and drive her away. But when she'd lay down and go to sleep on the floor or on the sofa or even in her bed, the cat would be right there beside her or even laying on top of her. When the poor old thing had reached the end of his life (he was 17 when he died) she wasn't in the house that night. But he died curled up at the foot of her bed.

Mark

Oh my goodness....what a sweet story.


Me(bw/fww) 39
recovering with amazing fwh/bh 36
DS 7
DS 4

His
EA Oct '07 - 7/2/08 (d-day)
NC 7/4/08

Hers
EA/RA 6/'09-3/'10
NC 3/17/10


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Don't know when you'll answer but I'll ask anyway...

Does he bring up not loving you all on his own or only when prompted by questions from you? Does he go off on you without warning or when backed into a corner by something you might have said or done? Is there any pattern to it that you can try to identify and avoid those things that cause it?

In other words...

"Doctor! Doctor! It hurts when I do this..."

And the doctor says...

"So don't do dis..."

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Originally Posted by Mark1952
Does he bring up not loving you all on his own or only when prompted by questions from you? Does he go off on you without warning or when backed into a corner by something you might have said or done? Is there any pattern to it that you can try to identify and avoid those things that cause it?
Before last Saturday, I hadn't directly asked H if he loves me for many months. He doesn't bring up that he doesn't love me on his own. In fact, it's the first time that he's actually voiced it to me in such a straight-forward manner.

The LBs happen often without warning. For example, his comment about me wanting kids with the FOM and then about how crappy marriage is came when I thought we were sharing lovely moments.

I do try to avoid things that I'm pretty certain will upset him. But there are times when he comes out of left field or jumps from calm to exaggerated in a single moment.


Me (FWW): 45
BH: 46
M: 11/94
PA: 2/08 (4 mos)
Confessed: 10/08
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I think I'm caught up. Here's what I have to offer right now:

{{{L4}}}

smile


Me - 30 (FWW)
H - 30 (BH)
DSx2
D-day: 2008
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