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I wonder whether part of my marital problem stems from being too laid back. What if I were to get nasty, perhaps violent. Advice here seems to reinforce my natural views but maybe I'm just not showing enough emotion to convince her how much I care. Are there any success stories where BSs have just gone over the top and made their point physically - or just failures. Example of either, please.<p>[ February 26, 2002: Message edited by: Paul Bradley ]</p>

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Paul,<p>...the Golden Rule...

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hmm, I wouldn't call myself a nice BS. I tried to punch my last H out on the side of a busy road after he left me. When he jumped in his car and locked the door I smashed my car into his truck, causing $2000 worth of damage.[on my car, duh!] <p>Nor was I "nice" when I found out my new H was having an internet EA. I just kicked him out. Told him that was it and had no intention of letting him stay until he begged me to give him another chance. If he ever did it again, there wouldn't be another second chance.

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Are you seriously suggesting that physical violence is a sign of caring? Because I can assure you that it is not.<p>My husband (WS) is also a laid-back kind of guy, but during the toughest part of our recovery, he changed somewhat. When upset he would throw things, break things, etc. I absolutely hated it, and if he had not gotten control of the problem, our marriage probably would have ended.<p>If you want to show your wife you care, take the time to find out what HER emotional needs are and formulate a plan to MEET her emotional needs. Commit to continuing to do your best to meet her needs for the rest of your lives together.<p>There is no "quick fix" for years of emotional neglect, and physical violence is NEVER a solution to anything. I am choosing to ignore your implication that you might be physically violent with your wife, because I surely hope you were not even suggesting such a thing.

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I don't know if I should really do this because I don't want people to think that this is the right way to do things, because it's not, but...........<p>On D-Day, I went ballistic, the things that flew out of my mouth were things that I never thought I could ever say to my wife. There were even moments that turned physical, nothing that would cause a physical injury, but abuse nonetheless. I forced my wife to give me OM's cell phone number, which she claimed was the only number that she had, and I left numerous voice mail messages to him letting him know that I knew about the affair and that if he really wanted my wife, he could come and get her, and that I would step aside. Needless to say, he never came or called. Being in law enforcement, I own guns, and I will leave it at that. [img]images/icons/frown.gif" border="0[/img] <p>Once I calmed down, 6 hours later, I realized that no matter what my wife had done, she didn't deserve being de-humanized. I apologized for my reaction, told her that I loved her and that she was free to leave and go be with the OM. My wife didn't leave, but she did state that she had never seen my like that, never knew I was capable of such rage, and that she was afraid. No matter how much pain and anger I felt, I never ever wanted my wife to be afraid of me.<p>It took many months to convince my wife that she didn't need to be afraid of me. It took time,counseling and the fact that I had a lot of investigative tools at my disposal before my wife started telling the truth about who the OM was, along with other details that she had initially lied about. Once she began to tell me of very painful details and saw that I wasn't going to react in the manner that I initially did, she began to feel safer, and thus opened up considerably. <p>On one hand, I believe that my initial reaction set us back many, many months of recovery time, but on the other hand, I really do believe that my initial reaction also caused the affair to be over immediately. Not only was my wife too afraid to continue the affair, but the OM was damn scared too. For quite awhile I did that things that were totally against MB principles, I demanded that my wife check in with me almost on an hourly basis thoughout the day. I literally knew where she was every second. I couldn't monitor her telephone calls, but I did monitor her whereabouts. But after awhile I knew this wasn't going to work in rebuilding, so I backed off considerably and gave her the trust that up till then, she hadn't really earned.<p>Except for some lingering resentment on my part, I consider my recovery a success story, but not because of my initial violent reaction, but rather because of showing love, patience, caring and the ability to listen and learn. So no Paul, violence is not the answer, Love, Understanding and Forgiveness is.<p>As far as MB BS' being too nice, I don't believe that you can ever be too nice, but with that being said, I do read things here that BS go through and put up with that I would never put up with. If my wife hadn't immediately given up the affair, she would have been out the door, but that's just me.<p>[ February 26, 2002: Message edited by: F A ]</p>

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No that doesnt help in the least. <p>a) violence against her (which I doubt you meant) is wrong on so many levels I wont even go into it.<p>b) Violence against inanimate objects, just shows you are violent or cant control your emotions. neither of which are appealing qualities except for jerry springer auditions. Plus you will have to fix, replace or pay for anything you break. <p>c) Violence against OM. It would be nice if we were animals. the dominant male wins out. beat the crap out of the OM and you win the woman. It doesnt work though. Your W maybe in love with Om right? how would beating the snott out of someone you wife cares for help? She would just end up feeling sorry for him and mad at you.<p>d) Violence against self. Selfish stupid and wrong. Been there done that. Last thing you want is for your wife to stay with you to protect you from yourself. It would make she fly away faster or at least wish she could be not "trapped" as this might make her.<p>How do I know? I've been there. Breaking down emotionally doesnt work either Ive done all of the above. I am a very reserved person I am a selfless giver. I usually am quite emotionally sound, but I had a minor breakdown after d-day. I went through anger stage. I punched my closet.. ($80 dollars) I punched a picture frame. (5 dollars for frame, 120 dollars for stiches) I walked out at work stressed to breaking telling them i quit, which would have been costly as well but my co-workers sat me down and talked sense into me. Finally I tried suicide and now am seeing a psychologist. $120 a visit.
If you MUST do any of this crap skip to the seeing a psychologist part. learn anger and stress management. Get on meds control depression.<p>That person I allowed myself to be that week is not me. Nor do I want it to be me. Nor if I was in my wife's shoes would any of this help me "see the light" or make me any more likely to stay. I am most greatful that I may not have screwed up any chances I could have of a meaningful recovery. I think.<p>If you need to let an emotion show. if you need to take action. Show love, and patience. Fix yourself. <p>-HI

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I've wondered the same thing before, Paul.<p>The basics??? Meet as many EN's of the WS as possible, and avoid LB's at all costs. Here's a piece of that "Marriage Builders" thread that was bumped to the top recently.<p>
Four rules to guide marital recovery<p>
The Rule of Protection: Avoid being the cause of your spouse's unhappiness.<p>The Rule of Care: Meet your spouse's most important Emotional Needs.<p>The Rule of Time: Take time to give your spouse undivided attention.<p>The Rule of Honesty: Be totally open and honest with your spouse.
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(7) - The Rule of Protection<p>quote:
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The Rule of Protection: Avoid being the cause of your spouse's unhappiness. (page 90 of SAA)
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Love busters: the most obvious way to destroy love
Angry outbursts<p>quote:
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When anger wins, love loses. (page 92 of SAA)
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Disrespectful judgments<p>quote:
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A disrespectful judgment occurs whenever someone tries to impose a system of values and beliefs on someone else. (page 93 of SAA)
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Selfish demands<p>quote:
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When one spouse wins and the other loses, the marriage loses. (page 96 of SAA)
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Thoughtless decisions: a less obvious way to destroy love<p>quote:
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The Policy of Joint Agreement(POJA)... Never do anything without an enthusiastic agreement between you and your spouse. (page 97 of SAA)
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Thoughtfulness: the objective of marital negotiation<p>~ ~ ~ ~ ~<p>Hope that helps a little. We don't have to stuff our feelings - just learn to communicate them in a non-LB way. [img]images/icons/smile.gif" border="0[/img]

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Regarding what Peppermint said about meeting spouse's needs: that is probably one of the hardest things about MB priniciples yet what tells me this must all be correct: The BS is the one that is hurt, yet we (the BSs) are the ones who have to give first. We have to show our spouses FIRST why they should want to stay with us. Anger of course has no part in that. But boy is this hard to do!!! How many times, in Plan A, have I foolishly let out all the anger and hurt, LBing all the way . . .<p>And as for F A 's story, first off, thanks for sharing so candidly. Second, lucky you that it all worked out. Third, how convenient you were the physically stronger, tougher spouse who could keep watch over your wife until you (thankfully) realized that you needed to give her a chance to show you could trust her.<p>My WH just expects me to accept things. After all, as he put it, he's been doing this for years without my ever knowing, maybe he shouldn't have told me. And worse, no guarantees that he would ever tell me if he strayed again. So here is my point: Many MB'ers have expressed that they couldn't have accepted some of the things I've lived with. Where did that strength come from? Do I have no self-respect? Where was I when that was handed out?<p>Which brings me to the doormat-Plan A issue and when to start Plan B. Well, I've rambled, but this thread sure gave me a lot to think about.<p>Violence, you bet, no place where healing is meant to happen. Find another avenue to let the anger out, you're no doubt entitled to it.

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It's not fear that will make anyone give up an affair...and even if they did, it would just happen again later. She probably, deep down, wanted to give up the affair on her own...that's not the kind of thing that anyone healthy will be coerced into doing.<p>Geez...there's just no excuse for physical violence, property damage, or other immature and harmful actions like these. Just like there's no excuse for an affair. Two wrongs don't make a right...I sure wouldn't want my spouse coming back to me out of fear, because it wouldn't be genuine.<p>Your W may have been "out the door" if she hadn't given up her affair, F...but I would have been "out the door" myself if my SO had acted the way that you did. You are VERY lucky...<p>[ February 26, 2002: Message edited by: TowardsTheFuture ]</p>

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Paul,<p>I agree with the others about getting violent and nasty. But, I can identify with you about the "laid back" issue.<p>I have a history in my relationship with my wife of being extremely undecided in solving problems. Any kind of problem, whether it came to situation involving our daughters to small ones like what color to paint the bathroom. I'd always leave it up to her. I don't know if this is a manly trait, but I just assumed whatever I would suggest would get shot down or ridiculed so why bother? I know that type of attitude bothered her to no end. It's one of the things I am attempting to change about myself.<p>Steve Harley has helped me immensley with this problem. Instead of being laid back or just ignoring problems, I try to suggest to my wife an alternative. I'll use phrases like "How do you feel about this?" and then suggest a solution.<p>
Forget about getting physical. I'm sure you really didn't mean that. Just get involved with words. You might stimulate her mind and she will see a change in you. [img]images/icons/wink.gif" border="0[/img]

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Thanks, everybody.<p>I think I get the message that I'm doing OK. However the latest on OM is that he's been fighting with his W in front of their son and swearing at the boy as well. His W is chucking him out, the boy won't talk to either of them and is an emotional wreck and it seems to me OM's world is collapsing around him( apart, perhaps, from his relationship with my W ). How blind can she be to his excesses and selfishness. There's one innocent boy who is being seriously hurt here and there, but for the grace of god, go my boys as well. <p>I'm thinking this whole plot is the stuff of fiction. How hard is for a WAW to see she's made a bad choice?

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I guess thats part of the FOG.<p>Our faults as BS are easy to see, but WS's are blind to the OP's faults even if they are right in their faces. Or for whatever reason they make the WS pity the OP more. it is backwards and stupid.<p>You WW probably just feels sorry for the Om that his world is collapsing. In her eyes I bet she sees him as blameless or at the most the victim orf bad circumstances.<p>What REALLY stinks is that WE as BS's cant point their misjudgement out to them. It has to come from a third party like a MC, and even THEN it may not be accepted or acknowledged as truth.<p>it is maddening. <p>-HI

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Hi, Paul~<p>Wow, this brought back memory for me. Under the circumstances surrounding my husband and I at the time, when I admitted my affair, it was over the phone. My husband started screaming and crying and he made several very threatening statements to me.....one of which was...."You better be glad you aren't here right now or I would paint the walls with you!" You better believe THAT scared the bejeezus out of me. I was really thankful I wasn't there.<p>As time went on, I came home from the hospital (reason I wasn't there in person to tell him). One day, H was having a very difficult time dealing with all of this....he was angry and restless. So, he grabbed me up (not literally) along with his golf clubs and put us in the car. We went to the driving range. He got the biggest bucket of golf ball they had. So.....he smacked the pee out of every golf ball in that bucket. I was sitting there thankful that he was able to release his anger doing something he loved to do. I was also thankful that he was open enough to let me know he was angry. I was also thankful that beforehand he recognized his anger and came up with an idea to release it in a way that was actually productive for both of us.<p>I got the full impact of just how angry he was....but I wasn't threatened by it. He had put so much consideration into how he revealed that anger.<p>I am glad I was there that day at the driving range. I am even more glad that I wasn't there the day I told him of my affair. The golf balls worked....the threats didn't.<p>selket<p>P.S. My H was also very laid back. It gave me the impression he just didn't care. That was one of my biggest problems with him at the time of my affair. I thought he would never stand up or fight for his beliefs. That day on the golf course earned him alot of respect from me. I don't know if it was right or wrong...but that is how I felt at the time and how I feel about it now.<p>[ February 26, 2002: Message edited by: selket ]</p>

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TowardsTheFuture - I get the sense from your post that you interpreted my story as me trying to some how justify my actions or say that one should use fear or violence to get ones spouse back, all of which would be an inaccurate interpretation. I gave my accounting of what happened with me to point out what NOT to do, thus my quote....<p>"I realized that no matter what my wife had done, she didn't deserve being de-humanized.......So no Paul, violence is not the answer, Love, Understanding and Forgiveness is"<p> <blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><hr>Your W may have been "out the door" if she hadn't given up her affair, F...but I would have been "out the door" myself if my SO had acted the way that you did. You are VERY lucky...<hr></blockquote><p>I guess this is what makes me different from a lot of people here at MB, but if my wife had chosen to walk "out the door", then so be it. As noted in my post, I still have a lingering resentment, and that resentment is not all based on my wife's affair, there is much more to my resentment than just the affair, there were things and actions from over 10 years of being together that is at the root of that resentment. So while I consider myself a success story, I don't view myself as "VERY lucky", I could have gone on with my life if my wife had chosen to walk out the door.<p>But that is neither here nor there, the point of my post, which I believe you missed, is that violence is not the answer.<p>[ February 26, 2002: Message edited by: F A ]</p>

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There is no benefit to violence. NONE. Not in words or deeds. It will only drive the WS further away.<p>However, there is a difference between being violent and being firm. I honestly believe I have been too wishy-washy with my wife. I want my yes to mean yes and my no to mean no. I think doing that will show my wife I have backbone and will be attractive to her. It will earn me respect, which she has said she wants to have for me but obviously doesn't. But you don't demand respect by enagging in violence. In fact you lose it.
It must be earned by consistent, strong, rational behavior.

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<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by asgoodasitgets:
<strong>.....Many MB'ers have expressed that they couldn't have accepted some of the things I've lived with. Where did that strength come from? Do I have no self-respect? Where was I when that was handed out?<p>Which brings me to the doormat-Plan A issue and when to start Plan B. Well, I've rambled, but this thread sure gave me a lot to think about.</strong><hr></blockquote><p>I hope that you didn't take my statement that I wouldn't go through what many BS here on MB do go through as a criticism. I was simply speaking for myself and what my limits are. What my limits are may not be what another person's limits are, doesn't make one person's limits any better or worse than another's, just different. <p>Heck, I know people who wouldn't have put up with the things that I have over the years [img]images/icons/wink.gif" border="0[/img]

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F:<p>I picked up on your point...just wanted to make sure you did...it sounded like you thought that was the only way you could have gotten through to her or the only way she would have ended the affair...<p>...and you ARE lucky. We're all lucky to have someone to love in our lives, and it's so easy to mess it all up. You're lucky that you came to your senses before you lost her for good...and maybe you would have been fine...we all would, without our SO's...but wouldn't you have missed her, and regretted the part that you contributed to what was wrong in your marriage?

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<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by TowardsTheFuture:
<strong>....and you ARE lucky. We're all lucky to have someone to love in our lives, and it's so easy to mess it all up. You're lucky that you came to your senses before you lost her for good...and maybe you would have been fine...we all would, without our SO's...but wouldn't you have missed her, and regretted the part that you contributed to what was wrong in your marriage?</strong><hr></blockquote><p>As I stated before, I guess I am different from most people here, but I don't consider myself lucky at all. While I agree that we all want someone to love and to love us, I don't believe that if my wife had walked out, that love could not have been found elsewhere. On my D-Day, there was not much in my love bank, my wife had stopped making deposits long ago, as a matter of fact, during my wife's affair, I had brought up divorce, and it was she who stated that she didn't want one. So initially I would have probably missed the living situation more than I would have actually missed her. <p>You are absolutely correct, I was a contributer to the state of the marriage, I had emotionally divorced myself from my wife long before her affair. This divorce came about because of many, many reasons that I have listed here on MB before, namely issues that have to do with child abandonment, physical and sexual abuse as a child, all things that I knew nothing about pre-affair. If you have never lived with a person whom has lied to you from the very beginning about who they were and what their history was, you have no idea of the amount of resentment that this causes. So while I have looked in the mirror and made the necessary changes to improve my marriage, so has my wife. The things that my wife had to look in the mirror about and change, I must admit were much more difficult than what I have had to do, and that has caused me to love her more than I did on D-Day, but I would be lying to you and more notably myself, if I did not admit that because of all that has transpired between us, and all the lies that were told before, during and after the affair, my love bank is still not full, and that I still do not consider myself lucky to be in this marriage. <p>Btw, I understood my point, I was the one making it.

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OK [img]images/icons/smile.gif" border="0[/img] <p>No need to get testy...just glad that you realize that your actions were not healthy.<p>[ February 26, 2002: Message edited by: TowardsTheFuture ]</p>

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So we can agree, violence is wrong. OM is violent, although not yet to WW. When might she see him for what he is?

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