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Which is what leaves me to believe that she might have been doing HIM a big favor in agreeing to marry him.

He would have been hard pressed to find another woman that would have put up with the vanity and ego of such a man.

Just sayin'...

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Right. Because we all know that vain, egotistical men never get women to marry them.

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Originally Posted by unwritten
It is interesting to see Dr Harley advise this poster to not tell his wife he is not attracted to her.

This seems contradictory to PORH and the EN questionnaire that requires a rating as well as the specifics as to why someone has given that rating regarding PA.

I am confused.

I was hoping someone who is wiser on the MB principles than me (not hard to find) would explain Dr H's answer more. I have revisited this thread to try and get some clarity on the topic of the PORH and how it applies to PA.

MelodyLane?

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Originally Posted by ETW
Great news!!

My wife and I sat down last night and went over the questionnaire, I decided not to be 100% honest about the fact that I was never attracted to her physically.

Here. This bothers me immensely. It is a complete contradiction to the PORH. It is deceptive.

It is great that his wife has enthusiastically agreed to some UA time at the gym, but I feel like she has been given just a small portion of the information we have been given here. This poster has discussed how the lack of getting this need met has impacted him, to the point of talking separation/divorce. Yet it was candy coated to his wife. I think that is totally unfair and does not give her the full truth of what she is dealing with here.

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Unwritten ... the damage done to a woman by the honesty is greater than the solution to fix it. PA can be fixed by meeting the top Four EN's with 15+ hours/week. When this happens ETW will be attracted to his wife ... the problem is fixed.

The resentment and hurt she will feel is far greater and will take ETW more extensive work to fix. The best solution is to simply have her meet his needs for 15+ hours/week.

It is the same approach to sex. Dr. Harley finds sexual imcompatibility usually corrects itself when the couple meet each other's intimate needs at least 15+ hours/week.

Does this make sense?

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It actually makes perfect sense to me. You see, IF you have a need for physical attraction as one of your emotional needs, chances are that you entered into the relationship with that need being met.

Mine never was.

I honorably married this woman due to a situation, I would rather not provide the details. I suppressed my need for attraction in a spouse even though it is actually the most important one on my list. I guess I have done a good enough job hiding this because I am doing a pretty good job meeting her needs, but agree I need to do better on some.

Just curious, what do you people think she would do with the knowledge that I never was juiced by her looks? This is nothing she really can control.

We have begun taking hikes together. I will certainly give the Doctor's advise a shot and see if spending more time in recreational activities does help me see her as attractive. If it does not, I made a promise with myself to just keep suppressing my emotions and work on providing her bucket with deposits.

This forum is helping me deal with the fact that maybe this will just be with me forever.

Her number two need after financial security by the way, is need for affection. It sure would be easier if she were filling up my bucket in the attraction need to give her affection back in return.

Doesn't matter in the end, I am committed to giving her more affection. On the way back from our last hike, I held her hand in public.

Progress.

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Reading your posts here suggest this actually has nothing to do with her PA, but your EXTREMELY High need for admiration.

I would go to your wife and tell her you have a very high need for admiration, which means you need her to praise you and stroke your ego any chance she has and all day/everyday. I would make sure you communicate to her just how much admiration you need, and make sure she understands how you like your admiration, i.e. praise, gifts, time, etc.

This should allow her to fill your lovebank with buckets full of love.

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Originally Posted by WalkinForward
Unwritten ... the damage done to a woman by the honesty is greater than the solution to fix it. PA can be fixed by meeting the top Four EN's with 15+ hours/week. When this happens ETW will be attracted to his wife ... the problem is fixed.

The resentment and hurt she will feel is far greater and will take ETW more extensive work to fix. The best solution is to simply have her meet his needs for 15+ hours/week.

It is the same approach to sex. Dr. Harley finds sexual imcompatibility usually corrects itself when the couple meet each other's intimate needs at least 15+ hours/week.

Does this make sense?

I have often heard people say on the SAA forum that it is a DJ to think that your spouse cannot handle the TRUTH and therefore it is not acceptable to be vague or dishonest with the intention of protecting them. Given that no, this does not make sense.

If PA can just be 'fixed' by meeting the most intimate EN's, then why is it part of the questionnaire? Why would Dr Harley ask spouses to identify their most important EN's, and identify those specific things that you want your spouse to change to meet the PA EN? Such as, weight change, hair changes, attire change, clothing change... Versus to just provide us with the four INTIMATE ones and tell us to just focus on those and the rest will correct themselves naturally.

Regarding SF, although I have heard Dr Harley say that also, there is a completely separate questionnaire to provide very specific sexual need meeting information. Never does he say "just tell your spouse you are fine with SF and spend the UA time and it will all fall into place." It says to tell your spouse you are NOT happy with the way that need is being met, WHY you are not happy, and HOW they can better meet that need.

So I guess I have never understood Dr Harley advising anyone to be vague or deceptive in their needs or how to meet those needs, especially under the DJ presumption that it is to 'protect' their spouse.

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Sorry ETW I don't mean to thread jack you here. I'm just very curious about this topic.

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Originally Posted by WalkinForward
Unwritten ... the damage done to a woman by the honesty is greater than the solution to fix it. PA can be fixed by meeting the top Four EN's with 15+ hours/week. When this happens ETW will be attracted to his wife ... the problem is fixed.

The resentment and hurt she will feel is far greater and will take ETW more extensive work to fix. The best solution is to simply have her meet his needs for 15+ hours/week.

It is the same approach to sex. Dr. Harley finds sexual imcompatibility usually corrects itself when the couple meet each other's intimate needs at least 15+ hours/week.

Does this make sense?

I AGREE 100%.

ETW...you are smart to tread lightly with this.

Please continue to follow Dr. H's specific advice to you because he SELDOM posts on individual public forum threads. You are on the right track. He understands the BIG PICTURE dynamic of Romantic Love.

Recently I heard a MB radio segment (I wish I could find it�) where Dr. Harley discussed radical honesty. He said that in the book LOVEBUSTERS, he introduced Selfish Demands, Disrespectful Judgments and Angry Outburst before Dishonesty for a specific reason. We need to be very RESPECTFUL in our honesty, when we tell our spouse that they could fill our love bank by working on their physical attractiveness.

Please make a list of a few things that she could focus on to IMPROVE in areas you care about. Write it down and edit it until it is respectful and kind, but honest. It will be tough, because she may grill you.

IMHO, it is a HUGE MISTAKE to tell your wife that she WAS NEVER or CAN NEVER BE attractive enough or that she has the WRONG body type to meet your need.

That is what happened to me. In fact, my husband is the one with the gawking thread you were referred to. The WAY he was RH was very damaging to me and I have not healed from it even though I have a clearer understanding of the dynamics which plagued our relationship for 20 years. Hint: My PA was not the BIGGEST problem. I am not sure that I will ever recover from the hurtful, disrespectful, judgmental things he said. My husband has come out of the fog, reached the romantic love threshold, and sees me very differently than at the time he said them. He regrets the disrespectful things he said. I still have lots of room for improvement to meet his need for PA, but he does see my beauty and how lucky HE is that I DIDN'T QUIT.





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Originally Posted by WalkinForward
Reading your posts here suggest this actually has nothing to do with her PA, but your EXTREMELY High need for admiration.

I would go to your wife and tell her you have a very high need for admiration, which means you need her to praise you and stroke your ego any chance she has and all day/everyday. I would make sure you communicate to her just how much admiration you need, and make sure she understands how you like your admiration, i.e. praise, gifts, time, etc.

This should allow her to fill your lovebank with buckets full of love.

X2

And remember, any compliment or ego stroking that she gives you is worth 10x the admiration from outside your marriage. Your wife has lived with your neglect and flaws for a long time and other people haven't.

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The following is a quote from the weekend forum posted by Dr Harley 2 years ago explaining disrespectful judgements. Perhaps this information will help to explain his post to this particular thread.


"Starting with "I feel ... " is a good way to begin a sentence, but the rest of it should not contain any judgmental words. The sentence "I feel that you're an idiot" is an obvious misuse of the words "I feel." "I feel" should be used to express a perspective in a non-demanding and respectful way. "I feel differently about that issue. I would enjoy seeing red roses instead of the white roses that we have in our garden. How do you feel about it." There are many disrespectful alternatives to that comment that may be difficult to see at first, such as "I feel that white roses are unattractive." Even though that may be how you really feel about white roses, it is judgmental in that it gives the impression that if you like white roses, you have no taste in roses. People who have not learned to speak in respectful ways can't see this point, and view their word, "unattractive," as being only unattractive to themselves, with no intent to imply that the other person might be offended by that comment. That's why you must write down every sentence your husband says to you that you feel is disrespectful and explain that you found it to be that way. If he says that you do the same thing, he should write down any sentences you utter that he views as disrespectful. Interpretation is everything. The only thing that both of you should do that might be interpreted as being disrespectful by the other is actually writing them down."


BW 58
WH 61
married 35 years
2 adult children
2 grandchildren

"Love anything and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one...It will not be broken, it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable...The only place outside of Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from dangers and perturbations of love is Hell" c.s. lewis
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ETW:I want to commend you for coming here to get help to build your marriage. Reading your thread is a HUGE trigger for me, and I have not posted until today for that very reason. But, even as difficult as it is to hear an echo from my past, I know that you are in the right place, and if anything I say can make a difference, then it will be worth it.

Originally Posted by ETW
You see, IF you have a need for physical attraction as one of your emotional needs, chances are that you entered into the relationship with that need being met.

Mine never was.

You are not UNIQUE! I am guessing that you made a good decision, but then you allowed yourself to be WAYWARD and second guess yourself when things got tough.

I honorably married this woman due to a situation, I would rather not provide the details. I suppressed my need for attraction in a spouse even though it is actually the most important one on my list. I guess I have done a good enough job hiding this because I am doing a pretty good job meeting her needs, but agree I need to do better on some.

Just curious, what do you people think she would do with the knowledge that I never was juiced by her looks? This is nothing she really can control.

Dr. Harley said something to me/h that really sunk in for me. We can always go find something more IDEAL. But once we are married, the search is over. Like I told my husband, "I can't possibly fill the lovebank of somebody who spends his life dreaming of another wife, another life. That is INSANITY.

We have begun taking hikes together. I will certainly give the Doctor's advise a shot and see if spending more time in recreational activities does help me see her as attractive. If it does not, I made a promise with myself to just keep suppressing my emotions and work on providing her bucket with deposits.Good job! If you were to read 1HopefulGuy's threads, you would see that it isn't about supressing emotions. It is about where you place your focus and how much competition you allow to distract you from your vows and current job as husband and father.

This forum is helping me deal with the fact that maybe this will just be with me forever.

Her number two need after financial security by the way, is need for affection. It sure would be easier if she were filling up my bucket in the attraction need to give her affection back in return.

So you are withholding affection as a sort of punishment for not being pretty enough? Affection is about caring and connecting. Would you withhold affection from your kids because they weren't cute enough? Would you withhold compliments because they aren't cute enough or annoy you?

Doesn't matter in the end, I am committed to giving her more affection. On the way back from our last hike, I held her hand in public.
Okay then. Once you are in the habit, it will feel weird not to. You have probably had one mental foot out of the door for a LONG time, and allowing yourself to work with whatcha got, is a decision. Like Dr. Harley says, "Feelings follow actions." He is right. You just have to decide that maybe you CAN happy and confident, even without Miss Ironwoman as your wife. Start letting your wife meet those INTIMATE emotional needs. smile


THAT WILL BE
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Originally Posted by graceful2b
The following is a quote from the weekend forum posted by Dr Harley 2 years ago explaining disrespectful judgements. Perhaps this information will help to explain his post to this particular thread.


"Starting with "I feel ... " is a good way to begin a sentence, but the rest of it should not contain any judgmental words. The sentence "I feel that you're an idiot" is an obvious misuse of the words "I feel." "I feel" should be used to express a perspective in a non-demanding and respectful way. "I feel differently about that issue. I would enjoy seeing red roses instead of the white roses that we have in our garden. How do you feel about it." There are many disrespectful alternatives to that comment that may be difficult to see at first, such as "I feel that white roses are unattractive." Even though that may be how you really feel about white roses, it is judgmental in that it gives the impression that if you like white roses, you have no taste in roses. People who have not learned to speak in respectful ways can't see this point, and view their word, "unattractive," as being only unattractive to themselves, with no intent to imply that the other person might be offended by that comment. That's why you must write down every sentence your husband says to you that you feel is disrespectful and explain that you found it to be that way. If he says that you do the same thing, he should write down any sentences you utter that he views as disrespectful. Interpretation is everything. The only thing that both of you should do that might be interpreted as being disrespectful by the other is actually writing them down."
It's funny that you posted that grace2b. We have been doing the MB online program too, and that is what we just decided to do. When there is a correction to be made or thoughtful request, we need to just write it down and edit it out before even presenting it to the other person. Verbal communication can be difficult to control.

ETW:
As others have suggested, you could thoughtfully make a list for yourself of things that she can reasonably do to IMPROVE in areas that you would appreciate. I know that in your mind, you may FEEL like it is hopeless, but I will bet that she would like to improve, especially if you complement her and notice her good features. (Her sparkly eyes, cute ears, white teeth, cute toes, nice wrists, painted nails?) Everyone has SOMETHING about them to compliment.

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Does anyone know how long it takes for spending time together before I start changing how attractive I feel she is? So far, nothing has changed, and although she says she wants to look better for me, she has no interest in doing a real workout separately or together. She brought up again that she was surprised that looks were that important to me, and that she really thought I was "above" that.

I don't know if this is going to make any difference at all. Getting very depressed over this.

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Not to mention the worst part is that she didn't rate physical appearance high on her list, so here I am knocking myself out to look and feel great, wasted on someone who is herself "above" needing that. I really think we just aren't right for each other, I have completely swung back to how I felt when I originally posted.

Sorry to let you'll down, but looks have been and always will be important to me. Sorry if that makes me less of a person! I will keep the plan, but don't have much faith.

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Is she familiar with this program at all? It is a DJ for her to tell you she thought you were 'above that.' Not to mention that it shows she does not understand how EN's work.

I thought she was enthusiastic about the exercise program you came up with? What changed?

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Once again, You are HERE! Don't quit yet.

Originally Posted by ETW
Not to mention the worst part is that she didn't rate physical appearance high on her list, so here I am knocking myself out to look and feel great, wasted on someone who is herself "above" needing that.

ETW:

ENs usually don't match up between spouses. So it's not important to her. But it IS important to you. And you were honest and told her that. Good job.

The fact that she said she is "above" that, confirms what all have told you about your marriage needing the WHOLE MB program. It is disrespectful for her to make disrespectful comments about your Emotional Needs. How you feel should matter to her.

But, she is probably hurt and disillusioned right now, so for now, please try to answer with something like, "That may be true that my need for PA is shallow. I'm sorry that it hurts you." Or even, "When you say that, it makes me sad, like you don't care about how I feel and that I should give up hope for anything changing."

ETW:

I have taken time to post to you. Maybe it will motivate me further to work on my husband's need for PA. I would really like to know the following things:

1. How do you feel things would things change FOR YOU if you had a wife who was physically attractive?

2. Why do you knock yourself out to look and feel great? How do YOU feel about people who DON'T "Knock themselves out to Look and Feel Great?"








Last edited by DidntQuit; 02/28/13 02:03 PM. Reason: Add CAPS for clarity
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Originally Posted by ETW
I really think we just aren't right for each other, I have completely swung back to how I felt when I originally posted.

Sorry to let you'll down, but looks have been and always will be important to me. MB program does not expect you to feel differently, ETW. Sorry if that makes me less of a person! No need to feel guilty about this. I will keep the plan, but don't have much faith.

ETW-

Could you please read the following articles and let me know if any of it applies to you and your wife?


http://www.marriagebuilders.com/graphic/mbi5026_qa.html

http://www.marriagebuilders.com/graphic/mbi5004_qa.html

http://www.marriagebuilders.com/graphic/mbi5004b_qa.html

DQ


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If I had a wife who was physically attractive, I would then have sexual tension, a pull towards her sexually. I know what sexual tension feels like, and I miss and want that. She just does not command that respect visually with me.

The fact that she does not had the slightest interest in working out confirms that she is OK with her looks as they are, which is actually great for her, yippi! To be honest, I don't think working out would close the gap between my hopes and her looks anyways.

I will continue to spend the time with her and see if my feelings change.

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