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Originally Posted By: Hilltopper1972
Originally Posted By: Prisca
Also be sure to mention the deadline to your wife, and make sure she agrees. Be sure to agree to exactly what you will do if by the deadline you haven't successfully eliminated these LB. I suggest you tell your wife "If I haven't succeeded in eliminating these lovebusters by June 7, I will set up an appointment for myself with Steve Harley."

And all of this needs to be in writing.


Understood


Ok sent my plan to my wife, she added a couple of things and we are set to go.


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Wonderful, Hill!


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Remember that in order for your ENs to stick, you need to stop LBing. It's hard to keep emotional attachments and/or feel safe when you're constantly in a state of stress or irritability.

So eliminating your LBs are key.

Make meeting your needs as easy as possible. If you snap at her for not meeting your needs because you've done A,B,and C for her will make her feel nervous.

Learn to like and love each other.


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Yep that is the plan! Last LB was Sunday morning and counting. I'm sitting next to my DW as we speak! Goal is four weeks.


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Hi Hill,

I rarely have time in the evening to spend online, but I wanted to drop in and apologize for being harder on you initially than I should've been. I only recently started commenting on your thread but I've been reading both yours and Grace's since the beginning and I find it difficult to not feel passionate about your situation when I see so many similarities to my own.

I empathize so much with your wife because I have been in her shoes. Scared, withdrawn, lacking confidence and self-esteem. And of course, I was responsible for some of the damage to my marriage and am in no way a guiltless party. In a way, I want to cram everything I've learned over the last year into the last month of your own journey so you can avoid my mistakes and reach your goals faster, but this is unrealistic and unfair to you. You have your own journey to map out.

The best advice I could give anyone is to listen and take to heart the words and wisdom of the vets here. I have always been amazed at their ability to see situations for what they are and offer guidance that is dead on. I can't tell you how many times people have said in hind sight "I wish I had listened to and followed the advice I was given. How do I repair the damage I've done now?"

Don't let that be you.

You guys have a REAL chance at success, but you have to follow every part of the program.

Last edited by aBetterMe; 05/10/11 11:41 PM.

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Looking good, Hilltopper!


If you are serious about saving your marriage, you can't get it all on this forum. You've got to listen to the Marriage Builders Radio show, every day. Install the app!

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Originally Posted By: aBetterMe
Hi Hill,

I rarely have time in the evening to spend online, but I wanted to drop in and apologize for being harder on you initially than I should've been. I only recently started commenting on your thread but I've been reading both yours and Grace's since the beginning and I find it difficult to not feel passionate about your situation when I see so many similarities to my own.

I empathize so much with your wife because I have been in her shoes. Scared, withdrawn, lacking confidence and self-esteem. And of course, I was responsible for some of the damage to my marriage and am in no way a guiltless party. In a way, I want to cram everything I've learned over the last year into the last month of your own journey so you can avoid my mistakes and reach your goals faster, but this is unrealistic and unfair to you. You have your own journey to map out.

The best advice I could give anyone is to listen and take to heart the words and wisdom of the vets here. I have always been amazed at their ability to see situations for what they are and offer guidance that is dead on. I can't tell you how many times people have said in hind sight "I wish I had listened to and followed the advice I was given. How do I repair the damage I've done now?"

Don't let that be you.

You guys have a REAL chance at success, but you have to follow every part of the program.


Thanks for the kind words. When I started this journey at the beginning of this year I was frustrated about not feeling that my wife wanted, needed, or loved me. I felt shut out of her life completely and I didn't know why. It is funny you mention being scared, withdrawn, lacking confidence and self-esteem, because the person you are describing is me. I have so little confidence and self-esteem that I developed the habit of not asking my wife for anything at all. I was terrified of rejection, was walking on egg shells, and began to withdraw myself here and there to protect me. It is not in my nature to be a withdrawn person for long periods of time so inevitably I would demand things from my wife because I was desperate for them. I was so lacking of confidence and completely insecure in fact that I conjured up a possible A and accused my wife four times about it without evidence. All I knew is that I was lonely and feeling unwanted or needed.

The process at which I went about trying to get what I wanted from my wife was unfair to her, but I didn't have any skills to go any other way about it. I'm learning those skills by listening to the radio show, filling out the workbook, reading LB, etc. It is a process and I'm getting better at this. I still however feel scared, lacking confidence, and have low self-esteem, but I have become less withdrawn because I now know I can always ask my wife "how she is feeling", "are you mad at me?", or similar questions rather than guessing all the time. Anyway, thanks for the note.


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Originally Posted By: Hilltopper1972
I felt shut out of her life completely and I didn't know why. It is funny you mention being scared, withdrawn, lacking confidence and self-esteem, because the person you are describing is me. I have so little confidence and self-esteem that I developed the habit of not asking my wife for anything at all.


Originally Posted By: Hilltopper1972
I still however feel scared, lacking confidence, and have low self-esteem...


It's always interesting to me when I realize my hubby and I are feeling the same way but can't seem to get on the same page.

You guys are in this spot right now. I think knowing how you feel, and knowing Grace feels the same way, should help you empathize with her. Treat her the way you want to be treated. Anytime you feel an LB coming on, conciously tell yourself to follow the Golden Rule. Pretend your talking to yourself when you talk to Grace and you may find it easier to avoid LB's.


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I told my wife I'd get back to her on this because I don't know the answer. I'm at jury duty today, wife sent a text saying it felt weird that I didn't hug her when I left this morning. I told her I thought it was strange she didn't hug me either. I said there was nothing wrong and everything is good. She told me to ask her next time for a hug and yesterday she reminded me to ask her fir things. So I sent her a note back saying, "it would be great if you initiated the affection(hugs) sometimes.". She replied back that I should not put those expectations on her because they make her feel lousy. I'm confused. She told me to ask, so I did, but then she said not to put expectations on her cause she feels bad. Was I selfish? Disrespectful? I'm certain I wasn't angry. She also said she had planned on giving me a hug but I left before she got the chance. This is very common. My wife frequently tells me she was planning on doing xyz after the fact. I told her that I wasn't sure exactly why but that it makes me feel bad when she does that. We left off with her requesting we postpone needs for a week to which I replied, "can I get back to you on that?"


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Eventually you will have a written plan to meet your wife's emotional needs, kind of like the plan to avoid LBs that you put together yesterday. You will have a list of things you want to try to do everyday, probably some things you want to do every week, etc. They are basically new habits to form.

A great habit for you to form would probably be: give my wife a hug every day when I leave, and tell her I love her. This will make love bank deposits into your account in her love bank. That is a good thing, so it's a net win. smile

She will also be putting together a plan at some point.

But there's no reason you can't start, now. Even if that's all you put on your plan, for the moment.

She wants a hug. She'll feel better about that hug if you just give it to her instead of having a complicated discussion that brings up something you would also like (in this case, a hug). Focus on the need she brought up and a plan to meet it. When you introduce your own needs in response to her needs, she perceives it as YOU AVOIDING THE SUBJECT OF HER NEEDS. That's probably not what you intend to do, but that's how she sees it!


If you are serious about saving your marriage, you can't get it all on this forum. You've got to listen to the Marriage Builders Radio show, every day. Install the app!

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So hug my wife without asking? I usually do this time but she was blow drying her hair so I figured no big deal. My wife wants to postpone meeting needs. I'm not enthusiastic about this. I can understand her not being ready to meet my needs until I show her that I can avoid LBs consistently. The part that feels awful though is that she is ok without having her needs met from me. If that is me being too emotional about this then fine tell me so and I'll grab a bucket of ice water. Remember I came here more than anything because I felt my wife didn't need me so anything related to this topic is extremely sensitive. I'd like to negotiate here because although the most imortamt thing for me is to avoid LBs, I don't think the MB an suggests that you intentionally postpone meeting a spouses needs. What do you think?


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Originally Posted By: Hilltopper1972
So hug my wife without asking? I usually do this time but she was blow drying her hair so I figured no big deal. My wife wants to postpone meeting needs. I'm not enthusiastic about this. I can understand her not being ready to meet my needs until I show her that I can avoid LBs consistently. The part that feels awful though is that she is ok without having her needs met from me. If that is me being too emotional about this then fine tell me so and I'll grab a bucket of ice water. Remember I came here more than anything because I felt my wife didn't need me so anything related to this topic is extremely sensitive. I'd like to negotiate here because although the most imortamt thing for me is to avoid LBs, I don't think the MB an suggests that you intentionally postpone meeting a spouses needs. What do you think?


I'd be emotional about that, too.

What's happening is that your wife is in withdrawal. Review one of the Basic Concepts, the three states of mind in marriage:

http://www.marriagebuilders.com/graphic/mbi3600_state.html

People don't last in withdrawal long; the move from withdrawal to conflict. When she gets back into the state of conflict, she will be willing to have her needs met, but her instincts will be telling her NOT to meet your needs, and she will have trouble overriding that.

In fact, it sounds like this morning, your wife would have been willing to have had her needs met by you: she wanted a hug. No biggie, you just made a wrong assumption in not hugging her, so that chance went past. Hang on, and make a point of giving her a hug tomorrow.

You are right that Marriage Builders advocates not postponing meeting needs, but it does say that both spouses need to be enthusiastic about the way in which it was done and that both spouses need to take "no" for an answer. Right now this is crucial for you.

You are right that Marriage Builders advocates not postponing meeting needs. So, YOU need to make a point of not postponing meeting her needs. Meanwhile, in order to avoid demands, you need to make a point of not putting any pressure on her to meet your needs. Meet her needs and avoid love busters, and you will see that she becomes more willing to meet your needs. As time goes by she will be working her to put together a plan to do just that!

Don't try to educate her about what Marriage Builders calls for. That's a Disrespectful Judgment! You are trying to avoid those. (Maybe put "Don't try to educate my wife about Marriage Builders" in your plan. wink ) Just keep meeting needs and avoiding love busters, which will make this entire system seem more and more attractive to her and will make her want to meet your needs.


If you are serious about saving your marriage, you can't get it all on this forum. You've got to listen to the Marriage Builders Radio show, every day. Install the app!

Married to my radiant trophy wife, Prisca, 17 years, who is a beautiful angel.
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Originally Posted By: Hilltopper1972
My wife wants to postpone meeting needs. I'm not enthusiastic about this. I can understand her not being ready to meet my needs until I show her that I can avoid LBs consistently. The part that feels awful though is that she is ok without having her needs met from me.


Originally Posted By: Hilltopper1972
I'd like to negotiate here because although the most imortamt thing for me is to avoid LBs, I don't think the MB an suggests that you intentionally postpone meeting a spouses needs.


Hill,

My first reaction to these statements is that you are getting impatient again. You are prone to LB's based on your history when you start getting to this point. BE CAREFUL with what you say and do from this point on. And remember, YOU are supposed to worry about YOUR side of the street. You are playing a tit-for-tat game here where you want everything to be equal, "I meet her needs, she meets mine" type situation. You both are not there yet, and not to mention, this is NOT how you should be looking at the MB program. And honestly I don't get the feeling your wife DOESN'T want to meet your needs but is in the process of not only learning how to but feeling SAFE enough with you to meet them. If you LB her again today, that would go against the marriage you're trying to create and put you back at the BEGINNING.

TAKE CARE OF YOUR OWN SIDE OF THE STREET. DO THE PLAN. YOU KNOW THE RULES.

I know you desperately want to feel loved by Grace, and if you hadn't LB'd all over the place these last few months, you'd probably be further along in this process, but that's not the case. You started at square one on Sunday. It's been three days so give it time!

Originally Posted By: Hilltopper1972
wife sent a text saying it felt weird that I didn't hug her when I left this morning. I told her I thought it was strange she didn't hug me either. I said there was nothing wrong and everything is good. She told me to ask her next time for a hug and yesterday she reminded me to ask her fir things. So I sent her a note back saying, "it would be great if you initiated the affection(hugs) sometimes."


Is is normal that you don't keep your wife posted of your whereabouts? I never leave the house without at least saying goodbye, that way DH doesn't look up and think "Jeez, she was just here, where'd she go??". This is just common courtesy. And hugging her when you leave, just DO IT.

BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE IN GRACE.

Don't lecture her about how "it would be great if she did x,y,z". YOU want affection and respect so show HER affection and respect. This will fill her Love Bank, she'll learn what you'd like her to do through your actions and reciprocate.

Oh yeah,

ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS. <------ Take this to heart.


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Markos I hear you and am on board. What I keep asking and still don't have the answer for is the following. She told me to ask her fir affection so I did just that. Her answer was don't put expectations on me. I sent my wife a long plan specifically pertaining to expectations she has if me and I have of myself. When she tells me not to place expectations on her I don't feel enthusiastic about our arrangement. The expectation of me us that I avoid LBs. She is not however ok with me asking to initiate affection, hugs, etc. The specific reason I asked her if she would be ok initiating affection is because each time I ask my wife to hug me, hold my hand, sit next to me I feel even less important than not having asked at all. Does that make sense?


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Originally Posted By: Hilltopper1972
She is not however ok with me asking to initiate affection, hugs, etc. The specific reason I asked her if she would be ok initiating affection is because each time I ask my wife to hug me, hold my hand, sit next to me I feel even less important than not having asked at all. Does that make sense?


SOLUTION: Don't ask, initiate. BE the change. STOP talking so much and just be the husband you want to be.

> Don't ask her to hug you, just hug her when you want a hug.

> Sit next to her if you want to sit next to her.

> Take her hand if you want to hold it.

Notice two things about the above? 1. You probably just did these things naturally WITHOUT asking when you were first together and 2. notice none of them involve asking her anything.


Last edited by aBetterMe; 05/11/11 02:11 PM.

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I said verbatim, "I have to get gas, here is the baby, have to leave now."


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Originally Posted By: Hilltopper1972
I said verbatim, "I have to get gas, here is the baby, have to leave now."


You know what this sounds like? "Hey boss, I have a dentist appointment. Here's that report you've been waiting on. I've gotta run."

Maybe change it up and say "Hi sweety (or whatever nickname you like), I'm running late and need to get gas on my way to jury duty. I've put the baby in her playpen and she's fine. Have a good day, I love you!" and finish it with a hug.

Why so cold Hill?


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Btw, do I ever get the benefit of the doubt from you markos? From my perspective you have decided what went down incorrectly and furthermore assume it is something I make a habit of. Not cool. I'm working hard and I cone to you for advice yet you repeatedly come to conclusions that nearly always attempt to point out me being a jerk when nothing of the sort took place. I am here to follow the plan and ask a lot of questions not defend myself over nothing. I would appreciate you helping me create love in my marriage and I don't believe your assumptions do that very well.


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Remember that point number one is to eliminate demands.

Originally Posted By: Hilltopper1972
Markos I hear you and am on board. What I keep asking and still don't have the answer for is the following. She told me to ask her fir affection so I did just that. Her answer was don't put expectations on me.


The answer is: just say "okay." Accept that right now she is not feeling enthusiastic.

You have a plan for pumping up her enthusiasm. It is called Marriage Builders.

Part of that plan is to not do anything that could be construed as a demand or a judgment. Don't do anything that she could construe as judgment of her lack of enthusiasm. Don't do anything that could be construed as demanding that your needs be met (such as pressuring her). If you do, you will prevent your plan from working.

Before she will be enthusiastic about meeting your needs, she will first need to see that you can calmly and patiently accept "no" for an answer.


If you are serious about saving your marriage, you can't get it all on this forum. You've got to listen to the Marriage Builders Radio show, every day. Install the app!

Married to my radiant trophy wife, Prisca, 17 years, who is a beautiful angel.
Attended Marriage Builders weekend in May 2010

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Originally Posted By: Hilltopper1972
Btw, do I ever get the benefit of the doubt from you markos? From my perspective you have decided what went down incorrectly and furthermore assume it is something I make a habit of. Not cool. I'm working hard and I cone to you for advice yet you repeatedly come to conclusions that nearly always attempt to point out me being a jerk when nothing of the sort took place. I am here to follow the plan and ask a lot of questions not defend myself over nothing. I would appreciate you helping me create love in my marriage and I don't believe your assumptions do that very well.


Okay. You are free to disregard my advice.

Personally I have some ideas where I suspect some landmines and bombs might be, and I would like to let you know where they are so that you don't step on them.

I think yesterday I was asking if, in 2-3 days, you would be back to demanding/judging/AOing when your needs aren't met. Again we are at a situation where your needs aren't being met. In my opinion, the absolute most important thing you can do right now is to not do ANYTHING that even REMOTELY looks to Grace like an SD, DJ, or AO. If you want the withdrawal problem to get better, you've got to look at the cause.


If you are serious about saving your marriage, you can't get it all on this forum. You've got to listen to the Marriage Builders Radio show, every day. Install the app!

Married to my radiant trophy wife, Prisca, 17 years, who is a beautiful angel.
Attended Marriage Builders weekend in May 2010

If your wife is not on board with MB, some of my posts to other men might help you.
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