Welcome to the
Marriage Builders® Discussion Forum

This is a community where people come in search of marriage related support, answers, or encouragement. Also, information about the Marriage Builders principles can be found in the books available for sale in the Marriage Builders® Bookstore.
If you would like to join our guidance forum, please read the Announcement Forum for instructions, rules, & guidelines.
The members of this community are peers and not professionals. Professional coaching is available by clicking on the link titled Coaching Center at the top of this page.
We trust that you will find the Marriage Builders® Discussion Forum to be a helpful resource for you. We look forward to your participation.
Once you have reviewed all the FAQ, tech support and announcement information, if you still have problems that are not addressed, please e-mail the administrators at mbrestored@gmail.com
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Page 6 of 11 1 2 4 5 6 7 8 10 11
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 35,996
P
Member
Offline
Member
P
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 35,996
PS

Sorry about your dog.

Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
G
Member
OP Offline
Member
G
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
Originally Posted by Wheels_spinning
Originally Posted by GreenMile
Last night, she stopped what she was doing at the computer when I came in the room, looked me straight in the eye and asked me, "Why are you here?" She wanted the big answer. Why am I still in this marriage? .... In this case, she really was looking for an answer, because of the thought that I did not feel "in love" with her. I tried to explain, but it did not help. When she asks for a response specifically, I am compelled to answer and explain, but it is always wrong or simply not believed due to the destruction of trust.

There is no reason to explain why you are there in ther marriage. I can ask why are you here on MB? You can explain the situation of the past, but that is not what I would want to hear either. I would rather you give me a straight answer like: "I am here on MB to learn ways to build a better marriage." Its honest and there is no trying to explain your past.

Explainations of your past to determin what you are doing now, even if what you are doing now, is a bad idea. Its all about what is happening now and what you can do for the future.

I find that when my wife asks me a question I don't answer it. Most of the time it might be a rhetorical question, and she just wants someone to listen to her. Many times I have to exercise empathetic listening. The hard part is trying to block my problem solver mode, and put myself into support mode.

Men by trait are problem solvers. They want to give solutions to any problem. Sometimes women what to be listened to, and don't want a solution. You know it and I know it, so there is no need to further explain. The hard part is practicing it. When is the right time to listen empithetically, nod to a rhetorical question, or shut your yap.

Of course maybe we are all reading into this too much and her real question was what are you doing here? meaning: I wasn't expecting you to be home.

That is it exactly, Wheels. I have been told this before by other veterans, as I mentioned. I still suck at it. I really am still a 2X4 guy, and most of the time, I need to remember to hit myself with it. My whole professional life was being expected to be a problem solver. But this is not what is being asked of me in my marriage, when I am being asked something by my wife.


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 533
W
Member
Offline
Member
W
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 533
Originally Posted by HerPapaBear
Originally Posted by Wheels_spinning
There is no reason to explain why you are there in the marriage.

WS, we all need to have an answer to this question, and need to be able to articulate the answer or we might as well pack our bags!

This is an honest question when our BS asks it!

It deserves an honest answer..... Every time it's asked!

I agree that he needs to answer it. I was suggesting don't use past experience to explain it. Just answer the question straight up, O&H.

Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
G
Member
OP Offline
Member
G
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
Originally Posted by Wheels_spinning
Originally Posted by GreenMile
Last night, she stopped what she was doing at the computer when I came in the room, looked me straight in the eye and asked me, "Why are you here?" She wanted the big answer. Why am I still in this marriage? .... In this case, she really was looking for an answer, because of the thought that I did not feel "in love" with her. I tried to explain, but it did not help. When she asks for a response specifically, I am compelled to answer and explain, but it is always wrong or simply not believed due to the destruction of trust.



Of course maybe we are all reading into this too much and her real question was what are you doing here? meaning: I wasn't expecting you to be home.

Naah. We are always together at home or when we run out to do stuff. I am retired. She meant exactly what I thought she meant. In this kind of question, I think HerPapaBear is right. Openness and honesty. And be prepared to give it calmly and with understanding to this important question, and let the chips fall where they may. That is what I did. The chips were difficult. But apparently I did the right thing, until I tried to explain too much.


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
G
Member
OP Offline
Member
G
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
Originally Posted by Pepperband
PS

Sorry about your dog.

Thanks, PB. If I could come back and relive my life, I think I would choose to be Phoebe...more than I would even choose to be a better version of me.


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
G
Member
OP Offline
Member
G
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
Originally Posted by Doormat_No_More
Originally Posted by GreenMile
Yes, I am already doing those exactly that and feel as you are suggesting. That is exactly where I am and where things should be at this point. I was just looking for some advice on how to help her with this obsessive idea she expresses of comparing our current state of intimacy with that which was present for awhile with my adultry partner.

Stop all talk about recovery. Period. Any questions about "why" you did what you did, or how you felt, can be answered by looking at the Three Stages of Marriage and Exclusive Need-Meeting. When the other women met your needs, you loved them. It's unfortunate, but that fact won't change. Don't squash your wife's questions, but answer them as quickly and matter-of-factly as you can, then turn the topic toward something that doesn't have to do with your affairs.

You don't want to further reinforce your mutual memory of those dark times. You must always be honest, but don't initiate discussions of the past and try to keep your answers about the past brief and to-the-point. Then go back to work meeting her needs and showing her she's the only one you want to love for the rest of your life.

She's afraid to trust you. That means she's moving from Withdrawal into Conflict. Keep that new leaf turned over for three months, six months, a year, two years... eventually you'll both know your heart is in the right place.

My wife's EA lasted eight months and has been over for a year. I'm just now starting to trust her again in small ways, and very occasionally feel happy and giddy like we're newlyweds.

Yours went on for decades. It's no wonder both of you look at the task ahead and worry if you're up to it.

I have faith that you are. Keep on keeping on, and keep very close track of any of your Love Busters, planning on how to stop engaging in them in the future.
I am doing exactly that. Thank you for the encouragement. Like anyone in this situation, encouragement is like food.



FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 6,986
P
Member
Offline
Member
P
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 6,986
GM, having walked in DWG's shoes (but not as long) I think I understand where she's coming from. I relate so much because that was exactly the MAJOR problem for me in getting to recovery with my DH. I found all these astonishing love letters that my DH had written to not just one OW but both of them! Never in our married life had I received such a letter from him. After 25 years, I had chalked it up to he's just not that kind of guy, so you imagine my shock and pain when I read those words stolen from me and given to an OW. He really did love them! He'd never loved me like that in all of our years together.

Nothing my DH SAID could convince me that what I believed was not the truth. For the longest time I believed that I didn't measure up to OW(x2).

It took a long, long time for me to finally believe that my DH truly loved/loves me but it was through his consistent actions. When I would have a meltdown, eventually, he would let me rant and rave and then hold me when I finally broke down. The only words I would HEAR were, "I know you don't believe me now, but I will show you how much I love you and that you are the only person for me if you'll let me."

Eventually, his actions did prove it but I would still have these little doubts pop up from time to time. Finally, I had to learn to stop the stinkin' thinkin' because I was beginning to sabatoge our recovery completely. At that point, my DH didn't deserve my rants because he was doing everything right. Remember, I didn't have MB so I didn't know anything about EN, EPs, love banks, etc. and was flying by the seat of my pants.

You guys are EARLY, EARLY into your recovery, even if it seems like this has been going on forever. You WILL get there. Remain steadfast, true and a ROCK for DWG. She hasn't had that from you in a very long time. It takes time and consistency from you. Lots and lots of time and consistency.

(((DWG and GM)))


Widowed 11/10/12 after 35 years of marriage
*********************
In a sense now, I am homeless. For the home, the place of refuge, solitude, love-where my husband lived-no longer exists. Joyce Carolyn Oates, A Widow's Story
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 6,058
M
Member
Offline
Member
M
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 6,058
GM,

My wife's affair was over in June and it was November when I discovered what appeared to be a pimple on the side of my chest, just below my arm pit. It very quickly gave indication that it wasn't just a simple pimple but actually a boil and did what all boils seem to do. It grew in size, swelled significantly, broke open and began to drain and bleed a bit. Then the swelling began to subside a little, a scab formed over the wound and though still tender, I gave it little thought at all on a daily basis.

By now it was the first week of December and though it didn't get demonstrably worse, it didn't really heal either. It didn't seem that important in light of trying to put our marriage back together and learn new ways of communicating and showing each other that we cared about each other.

A couple of days after Christmas, it swelled a little and drained a little more and I covered it with a bandage, just a band-aid, after pouring alcohol on it. (That will wake you up in the morning, I tell ya.)

It drained and bled and soon being out of strips to put on it, I covered it with a piece of gauze cut from a 4X4 pad and held it in place with a piece of tape.

The first weekend of the new year, my wife and I spent the weekend together doing some fun stuff on the spur of the moment. During that three day weekend, the spot went from an open wound of about the size of a quarter to one 4 inches across.

On Monday I made an appointment to see a doctor and after sitting there waiting for two hours found out he had an emergency at the hospital and wasn't going to see me. I went to the ER that night only to find that they had a couple of heart attacks, three gunshots, a car accident with three life-threatening injuries and about 100 people in line ahead of me. A couple came in with a baby with a high fever and struggling to breathe. The woman who began taking information from the husband as others rushed the baby and mother into a treatment cubical looked at me and said "If you aren't having chest pains, it will be at least two hours..."

I went home.

The next afternoon, I went to the local Quick Care and after a two hour wait, saw a nurse first. She called in the doctor who took one look, scheduled me with a surgeon the next day, ran blood tests, gave me a script for 4 grams per day of Augmentin and sent me home with pills in hand. The next day they took samples, sent them to the lab and I waited a week for results.

A week later the surgeon saw that while taking Augmentin, the wound had again doubled in size and was now 4X8 inches. He hospitalized me that night, debrided the wound the next afternoon and had IV antibiotics running into both arms with hourly blood being drawn. They changed one of the bags every couple of hours to something else they found to try and still had no idea what I had.

That was on Friday and on Tuesday they discovered that what I had was an acinetobacter infection. Almost nobody had ever heard of it and the only other people with this particular strain had all been blown up or shot recently. (this was 4 years ago)

Once it was ID'd, they put me on Bactrim (4 grams per day ) and 750 mils of Levaquin for secondary infection and sent me home with the fascia of the muscle on the side of my chest exposed in an area just over 4X8 inches in size. My wife, who nearly vomited and had to rest before being able to drive home after seeing the wound for the first time was about to become my care giver and considering that 7 months earlier she was considering walking away from the marriage to be with another man my Plan A was about to be tested as well as her commitment to recovery.

She watched the home health nurse change the dressing one day. The next she took pictures of it to give to the ID docs when I went to see them on Friday. On Sunday, she changed the dressing herself while the nurse told her what to do and by Wednesday, she was changing it for me. She changed it every day until I went back again 6 weeks later for a graft to close the wound.

She also did just about everything else that needed to be done. She cooked, cleaned, took care of our granddaughter most days, fed the dogs and cats...She washed the laundry, took me to the doctor...

As my wound began to heal, I found my heart healing as well. It was that she was SHOWING care for me that let me know that she cared for me. As I healed, she healed and the things she did for me were the most important things in her day. While I have made hundreds of extrapolations using my illness as analogy for recovery, healing and MB stuff, the main lesson I think is that it was what she did for me that allowed me to heal. She showed care, compassion and demonstrated empathy for my feelings and condition almost constantly.

I honestly think that had I not gotten sick, we could very well be divorced.

It will be what you DO for DWG that will let her heal, GM. What you know or what you say or why you do it won't really matter in the long run. Only what you do to show her care, compassion and empathy for her feelings will matter when all is said and done.

She'll never care how much you know until she knows how much you care.

You need to be transparent. I'm not talking about answering questions here but about daily life stuff. You don;t get to decide what she needs to know about your life, she gets to decide that. She needs to know where you are, what you are doing and when you change to something else. She needs you to tell her and not wait to be asked. She needs to know that you aren't hiding anything at all from her. If she discovers anything at all, no matter how trivial it seemed to you at the time you failed to reveal it, it will call into question everything she thought she knew. Nothing will be trusted no matter how genuine and empathetic you seem to be.

She needs you to take steps to comfort her in her times of distress since that distress was caused by you. You don't need to FIX it or ANALYZE it or EXPLAIN it, you just need to show her you care for her by caring for her.

She needs YOU to be the leader when it comes to UA time and providing for HER needs. She needs to know that you want to be with her and that you are willing to be with her more than you want to do anything else. She needs to know that she is FIRST in your life and not second, not even a close second. She needs to be asked what you can do for her to make her feel better and then you need to follow through and do it.

She also needs you to listen to her rant sometimes and just let her rant and vent. Again, you don't have to explain it or fix it or justify it or even answer it unless it is posed as a question she specifically says you need to answer.

Ultimately it will be she herself that has to heal, but it will be what YOU do that will give her what she needs in order to heal.

Coffee break's over. Back on my head...

Mark

Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
G
Member
OP Offline
Member
G
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
Originally Posted by Pepperband
Originally Posted by GreenMile
Yes, I am already doing those exactly that and feel as you are suggesting. That is exactly where I am and where things should be at this point. I was just looking for some advice on how to help her with this obsessive idea she expresses of comparing our current state of intimacy with that which was present for awhile with my adultry partner. It bothers her big time. I understand it but do not know how to help her with that. I cannot lie and feign giddy romantic feelings after 26 years and coming to loath who I was most of that time. There is nothing giddy in our experience at this time, only the painful roller coaster. At the peaks, I do feel almost giddy, and I am bad about not telling her that. Perhaps that is it. Maybe I need to learn to be more expressive of my feelings when things are going well, while still being calm and strong for her when things are going poorly. That is quite a trick to pull off for anyone, is it not?


think

Calling your wife's pain "obsessive" over the fact that you deeply loved OW/hooker and hated DWG for years .... makes me want to twoxfour

Another thing to raise redflag is that you are talking about your inability to feign "giddy romantic feelings" ... WTH? Who suggested "giddy" to you?

I am trying REALLY HARD to think of something helpful/constructive to offer you.

But, at the moment, the very best I can do is to refrain myself from calling you ugly names.

I'll be back later, when I can control myself. grumble
Pepperband, it is a loaded word, but maybe I am being too clinical. Just because it is something that she cannot stop thinking about does not mean that I think it is unjustified or abnormal or wrong in any way. All it means to me as a word is that it is something that she cannot stop thinking about. When a thought is recurrent and difficult to deal with emotionally, it is usually called obsessive. Please don't read into that what you seem to be reading into it. I value your insights more than you can know and respect you immensely. I did not mean anything bad by using that term.

I meant nothing bad by using the term "giddy" when describing the feeling of being head over heels in love. It is part of that feeling and describes the same thing that Dr. Harley describes in his books about falling in love. It does not mean that it is foolish, dumb, or less valuable than it is. I would give up an arm and a leg to be back there feeling giddy about DWG. In fact, there are times on this roller coaster when I do feel that, but instead of telling her that like I should, I just feel it. It is something else again that I need to work on.

Last edited by GreenMile; 08/13/10 03:45 PM.

FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 987
V
Member
Offline
Member
V
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 987
Another great post by Mark! hurray

GM, do you get it yet? You can say all you want, (which, by the way, is still leaving me confused and wondering what exactly is up with you), but it's what you do that will get to DWG.

And before you say you know all of this already, that you are already practicing just this such thing, stop. Think. Would you guys be at this particular low in recovery right now if that were the case?

What you're saying and what DWG is seeing are two very different things.

I suggest you reassess your treatment plan. Go back to first year of medical school - you know the "OLD CARTS" mnemonic? Focus on the CARTS part - what are the characteristics of DWG's pain? What is associated with it? What aggravates it? What alleviates it? Does it radiate - are there other parts of her life affected by this? What has she done to treat it? What is its significance?

You may think you have these answered, but I suggest you approach it again. Re-evaluate. You acknowledge that you are supposed to be the one leading and guiding the healing here - clearly your strategy has not been as successful as desired. What are you going to do differently?

This is not about what you think is best, or if you decided something at one point and are just sticking to that even in the face of it no longer working...Infidelity and recovery from it are many-faceted beasts, and you will need to constantly revisit and reassess your plan to heal your victim.

You say you get all of this stuff, but your actions don't always seem to show it. Now's your chance to start showing it.

Last edited by Mrs_Vanilla; 08/13/10 03:52 PM. Reason: coding, always with the coding

Me - 30 (FWW)
H - 30 (BH)
DSx2
D-day: 2008
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 987
V
Member
Offline
Member
V
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 987
And no expectations. It's unnecessary pressure, and it appears to affect you greatly when things aren't always sunshine and roses. That, in turn, affects DWG. Not in a good way.

One thing my BH said to me a number of months into recovery was that my emotional mess-ness was not reassuring. The emotional instability was working directly counter to our recovery.

Just something else to think about.


Me - 30 (FWW)
H - 30 (BH)
DSx2
D-day: 2008
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 987
V
Member
Offline
Member
V
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 987
One last thing (for now): Be the kind of man DWG wants to be married to, not the kind of man you think she wants you to be, or you think she should be married to, or whatever else.


Me - 30 (FWW)
H - 30 (BH)
DSx2
D-day: 2008
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
G
Member
OP Offline
Member
G
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
Originally Posted by princessmeggy
GM, having walked in DWG's shoes (but not as long) I think I understand where she's coming from. I relate so much because that was exactly the MAJOR problem for me in getting to recovery with my DH. I found all these astonishing love letters that my DH had written to not just one OW but both of them! Never in our married life had I received such a letter from him. After 25 years, I had chalked it up to he's just not that kind of guy, so you imagine my shock and pain when I read those words stolen from me and given to an OW. He really did love them! He'd never loved me like that in all of our years together.

Nothing my DH SAID could convince me that what I believed was not the truth. For the longest time I believed that I didn't measure up to OW(x2).

It took a long, long time for me to finally believe that my DH truly loved/loves me but it was through his consistent actions. When I would have a meltdown, eventually, he would let me rant and rave and then hold me when I finally broke down. The only words I would HEAR were, "I know you don't believe me now, but I will show you how much I love you and that you are the only person for me if you'll let me."

Eventually, his actions did prove it but I would still have these little doubts pop up from time to time. Finally, I had to learn to stop the stinkin' thinkin' because I was beginning to sabatoge our recovery completely. At that point, my DH didn't deserve my rants because he was doing everything right. Remember, I didn't have MB so I didn't know anything about EN, EPs, love banks, etc. and was flying by the seat of my pants.

You guys are EARLY, EARLY into your recovery, even if it seems like this has been going on forever. You WILL get there. Remain steadfast, true and a ROCK for DWG. She hasn't had that from you in a very long time. It takes time and consistency from you. Lots and lots of time and consistency.

(((DWG and GM)))

Thank you so much. Hugs to you. I do understand, and your telling me your similar experience helps me to understand it.. There is so much pain inside DWG, and I am responsible for it.

I have all the time in the world for this, meaning the rest of my life, as long as DWG lets me. The consistency is something I have to keep working on.

Anyway, I plan to live forever. So far, so good. (I stole that from some comic whose name escapes me).



FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
G
Member
OP Offline
Member
G
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
By the way. There are times when I kind of disappear from this forum for a few days. When that happens, I am not ignoring the task before me. I am usually re-reading the best advice from the best posts to me that I have copied and pasted into text documents in a special folder. If that keeps me on track and settled, then it is usually enough for me for that day. Yours is in there.


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
G
Member
OP Offline
Member
G
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
Originally Posted by Mark1952
GM,

My wife's affair was over in June and it was November when I discovered what appeared to be a pimple on the side of my chest, just below my arm pit. It very quickly gave indication that it wasn't just a simple pimple but actually a boil and did what all boils seem to do. It grew in size, swelled significantly, broke open and began to drain and bleed a bit. Then the swelling began to subside a little, a scab formed over the wound and though still tender, I gave it little thought at all on a daily basis.

By now it was the first week of December and though it didn't get demonstrably worse, it didn't really heal either. It didn't seem that important in light of trying to put our marriage back together and learn new ways of communicating and showing each other that we cared about each other.

A couple of days after Christmas, it swelled a little and drained a little more and I covered it with a bandage, just a band-aid, after pouring alcohol on it. (That will wake you up in the morning, I tell ya.)

It drained and bled and soon being out of strips to put on it, I covered it with a piece of gauze cut from a 4X4 pad and held it in place with a piece of tape.

The first weekend of the new year, my wife and I spent the weekend together doing some fun stuff on the spur of the moment. During that three day weekend, the spot went from an open wound of about the size of a quarter to one 4 inches across.

On Monday I made an appointment to see a doctor and after sitting there waiting for two hours found out he had an emergency at the hospital and wasn't going to see me. I went to the ER that night only to find that they had a couple of heart attacks, three gunshots, a car accident with three life-threatening injuries and about 100 people in line ahead of me. A couple came in with a baby with a high fever and struggling to breathe. The woman who began taking information from the husband as others rushed the baby and mother into a treatment cubical looked at me and said "If you aren't having chest pains, it will be at least two hours..."

I went home.

The next afternoon, I went to the local Quick Care and after a two hour wait, saw a nurse first. She called in the doctor who took one look, scheduled me with a surgeon the next day, ran blood tests, gave me a script for 4 grams per day of Augmentin and sent me home with pills in hand. The next day they took samples, sent them to the lab and I waited a week for results.

A week later the surgeon saw that while taking Augmentin, the wound had again doubled in size and was now 4X8 inches. He hospitalized me that night, debrided the wound the next afternoon and had IV antibiotics running into both arms with hourly blood being drawn. They changed one of the bags every couple of hours to something else they found to try and still had no idea what I had.

That was on Friday and on Tuesday they discovered that what I had was an acinetobacter infection. Almost nobody had ever heard of it and the only other people with this particular strain had all been blown up or shot recently. (this was 4 years ago)

Once it was ID'd, they put me on Bactrim (4 grams per day ) and 750 mils of Levaquin for secondary infection and sent me home with the fascia of the muscle on the side of my chest exposed in an area just over 4X8 inches in size. My wife, who nearly vomited and had to rest before being able to drive home after seeing the wound for the first time was about to become my care giver and considering that 7 months earlier she was considering walking away from the marriage to be with another man my Plan A was about to be tested as well as her commitment to recovery.

She watched the home health nurse change the dressing one day. The next she took pictures of it to give to the ID docs when I went to see them on Friday. On Sunday, she changed the dressing herself while the nurse told her what to do and by Wednesday, she was changing it for me. She changed it every day until I went back again 6 weeks later for a graft to close the wound.

She also did just about everything else that needed to be done. She cooked, cleaned, took care of our granddaughter most days, fed the dogs and cats...She washed the laundry, took me to the doctor...

As my wound began to heal, I found my heart healing as well. It was that she was SHOWING care for me that let me know that she cared for me. As I healed, she healed and the things she did for me were the most important things in her day. While I have made hundreds of extrapolations using my illness as analogy for recovery, healing and MB stuff, the main lesson I think is that it was what she did for me that allowed me to heal. She showed care, compassion and demonstrated empathy for my feelings and condition almost constantly.

I honestly think that had I not gotten sick, we could very well be divorced.

It will be what you DO for DWG that will let her heal, GM. What you know or what you say or why you do it won't really matter in the long run. Only what you do to show her care, compassion and empathy for her feelings will matter when all is said and done.

She'll never care how much you know until she knows how much you care.

You need to be transparent. I'm not talking about answering questions here but about daily life stuff. You don;t get to decide what she needs to know about your life, she gets to decide that. She needs to know where you are, what you are doing and when you change to something else. She needs you to tell her and not wait to be asked. She needs to know that you aren't hiding anything at all from her. If she discovers anything at all, no matter how trivial it seemed to you at the time you failed to reveal it, it will call into question everything she thought she knew. Nothing will be trusted no matter how genuine and empathetic you seem to be.

She needs you to take steps to comfort her in her times of distress since that distress was caused by you. You don't need to FIX it or ANALYZE it or EXPLAIN it, you just need to show her you care for her by caring for her.

She needs YOU to be the leader when it comes to UA time and providing for HER needs. She needs to know that you want to be with her and that you are willing to be with her more than you want to do anything else. She needs to know that she is FIRST in your life and not second, not even a close second. She needs to be asked what you can do for her to make her feel better and then you need to follow through and do it.

She also needs you to listen to her rant sometimes and just let her rant and vent. Again, you don't have to explain it or fix it or justify it or even answer it unless it is posed as a question she specifically says you need to answer.

Ultimately it will be she herself that has to heal, but it will be what YOU do that will give her what she needs in order to heal.

Coffee break's over. Back on my head...

Mark

What a story! I understand, Mark. Thank you so much.

- GM


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 6,058
M
Member
Offline
Member
M
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 6,058
GM,

Keep pluggin, Bud.

I'll check in tomorrow night or Sunday some time.

Till then...

I've GONE FISHIN'.

cool

Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
G
Member
OP Offline
Member
G
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
Originally Posted by Mrs_Vanilla
Another great post by Mark! hurray

GM, do you get it yet? You can say all you want, (which, by the way, is still leaving me confused and wondering what exactly is up with you), but it's what you do that will get to DWG.

And before you say you know all of this already, that you are already practicing just this such thing, stop. Think. Would you guys be at this particular low in recovery right now if that were the case?

What you're saying and what DWG is seeing are two very different things.

I suggest you reassess your treatment plan. Go back to first year of medical school - you know the "OLD CARTS" mnemonic? Focus on the CARTS part - what are the characteristics of DWG's pain? What is associated with it? What aggravates it? What alleviates it? Does it radiate - are there other parts of her life affected by this? What has she done to treat it? What is its significance?

You may think you have these answered, but I suggest you approach it again. Re-evaluate. You acknowledge that you are supposed to be the one leading and guiding the healing here - clearly your strategy has not been as successful as desired. What are you going to do differently?

This is not about what you think is best, or if you decided something at one point and are just sticking to that even in the face of it no longer working...Infidelity and recovery from it are many-faceted beasts, and you will need to constantly revisit and reassess your plan to heal your victim.

You say you get all of this stuff, but your actions don't always seem to show it. Now's your chance to start showing it.

I try to show it, Mrs. Vanilla. I want to show it. My heart is there. I do make mistakes. I am trying to eliminate them. Maybe your conclusions about my failure in this regard are based more on not knowing the extent of the damage, the thousands of embarrassing and shameful episodes and actions of mine that hurt DWG, the length of time it went on, and DWG's own sense of embarrassment, where she is taking some of the blame for allowing it to happen (which I disagree with). Cumulatively, I did so much damage in so many ways for so long, that part of the difficulty in our recovery is the magnitude and length of the damage. That takes a huge amount of time and intense careful effort to show my care, consistency, and sincerity. It might take us ten years to put a dent in it. It is worse than nearly all, if not all, the stories in here. I would be careful about attributing it to something that I am just doing wrong. I am giving it my all, and my effort is not perfect yet, and I still screw up. Please just wish us well. It will take us much longer than it would for younger couples with less history and long term patterns. Something wonderful can eventually happen, but there is no quick way in our case. Effort and faith and diligence. It is all I can do right now. Encouragement and not doubts is what I need now and in the long term. I feel especially bad about posting in clinical terms and using words like "obsession" which Pepperband did not interpret that way I meant it. My intentions are good, and my cry for help here is real.


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
G
Member
OP Offline
Member
G
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
Originally Posted by Mrs_Vanilla
And no expectations. It's unnecessary pressure, and it appears to affect you greatly when things aren't always sunshine and roses. That, in turn, affects DWG. Not in a good way.

One thing my BH said to me a number of months into recovery was that my emotional mess-ness was not reassuring. The emotional instability was working directly counter to our recovery.

Just something else to think about.

So true. You are spot on.


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
G
Member
OP Offline
Member
G
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 372
Originally Posted by Mark1952
GM,

Keep pluggin, Bud.

I'll check in tomorrow night or Sunday some time.

Till then...

I've GONE FISHIN'.

cool

Catch a big one, Mark!


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 987
V
Member
Offline
Member
V
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 987
GM, sounds like things are looking up! hurray


Me - 30 (FWW)
H - 30 (BH)
DSx2
D-day: 2008
Page 6 of 11 1 2 4 5 6 7 8 10 11

Link Copied to Clipboard
Forum Search
Who's Online Now
0 members (), 253 guests, and 63 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
dmi_112, Hanim, Kkeller, hjsnembaxm, Crushed Soul
71,798 Registered Users
Building Marriages That Last A Lifetime
Copyright © 1995-2019, Marriage Builders®. All Rights Reserved.
Site Navigation
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5