Originally Posted by markos
Originally Posted by Hilltopper1972
I called my sister to arrange it about a month ago. My wife didn't want any part of it because it was during the week. She has planned dates for us during the week, but in this particular case she was not interested in it. I'm just not the type of person when told no to say, "well how about now?", "well how about now then?"

I am certain that patience and persistence on your part will be more attractive to Grace than giving up.

She has expressed that I take the initiative to plan things,

Valuable information!! Act on it! Don't be one of those husbands who seems to never change, or never change permanently, or never respond to what his wife says. Those are the husbands whose wives quit communicating with them altogether.

but I don't ever enjoy how my initiative pans out.

Grace is changing right now just like you, so I encourage you to keep trying, because ultimately you will like how it pans out.

"If at first you don't succeed..." wink

I mean I made coffee for her this morning and the first thing out of her mouth was, "It's too strong."

(Valuable information!)

So who wants to plan a date or come up with anything when you'll just be criticized for the way you did it, how you made it, the time you planned it, etc?

A guy who wants a happy, passionate marriage. That's who!!!

Right now, it's not Grace's job to keep you motivated. You know? Can you keep your eyes on the goal so you can stay motivated?

My wife sees this lack of initiative as being "lazy" or "just not caring", but this is sooooo not the case.

You are absolutely dissing your wife's point of view, here.

Around here at Marriage Builders, "care" is a verb. If you are doing nothing, then in my opinion, you are not practicing care.

I like to be in charge, I like to be confident in the decisions or plans I make. The truth is I'm just not any more so I just wait for marching orders and do my best to not screw them up.

Oh good grief. You are really asking for this:


I don't remember Marriage Builders being a plan where you do nothing.

[quoteso I'm trying to come up with the courage and strength to plan things or do things for my wife anyways,

This is a lie you are telling yourself. You are actually procrastinating and doing nothing. There is nothing that you are actively doing in order to become more courageous or strong. You are just waiting and telling yourself that the reason you are waiting is to "come up with courage," but you don't actually have a plan to become more courageous nor are there any defined steps you are taking to become more courageous. Don't give yourself an excuse to do nothing.

Dr. Harley says men get a lot of credit for doing something, anything, even if it's not actually the right thing.

My wife is concerned that I paint her as this horrible human being on this forum.

VALUABLE INFORMATION. Listen to and respect your wife's point of view. You are doing something that bothers her, so knock it off.

I guess I just look at the point we have gotten to and I ask myself how did we get this way?

It probably has to do with you doing nothing and not moving forward on the plan to restore romantic love in your marriage.......

I learn almost every day about how spouses interact, what actions or inactions can deposit or withdrawal units from the LB, how things take time to repair, etc. I can't learn fast enough, and every time I figure something out I so much wish that I had already learned that a long time ago, you know?

Okay, info hound:
What Marriage Builders books do you own? How many have you read all the way through? How many of Dr. Harley's Q&A columns have you read?

I started reading the Q&A columns today after breaking off in the middle last year, and was surprised and delighted to see material that sure could have helped me last year to overcome problems I really didn't make any progress on until this year. I wish I learned that stuff a long time ago, you know? [/quote]

There you go again, you know my motivation more than myself? First of all its not a criticism every once in a great moon, it is constant, almost like it has to be said, must be said. It reminds me of a story a comedian told me:

A wife buys her husband a red tie and a blue tie. He is happy cause his wife did something nice for him, and she is critical, so he figured red or blue, he wins either way! He puts on the blue tie, walks out into the living room and his wife says, "Whats a matter, you don't like the red tie?"

My wife herself used the term "lazy" and "not caring", those were not my words.

I'm not lying to myself, I'm asking for help on how to better my ability to ask for stuff for my wife, and I don't know how to do it successfully yet. I specifically asked this question of Joyce Harley on a follow up again. If this skill is easy for you and you just can't understand how someone like me could struggle with it, then tell me what I can ask you or tell you that might help me learn a bit more quickly.

How many books did I read? I read 5 Way to Romantic love, LB, HNHN(almost finished), maybe 20 or so Q&A's. I'd read more but I have to re-read things a lot to take it all in. After HNHN, it will be HNHN for Parents.

So are you saying stop posting on this forum because there is a good chance my wife will read it and take offense to it? I mean I guess I could do that, but it is very therapeutic for me and I believe myself to be a better man for having been here, but I could be wrong.

Married 15 years
12 y/o DD
10 y/o DS
6 y/o DD