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 discussion 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 16 of 21 1 2 14 15 16 17 18 20 21
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 10,107
B
Member
OP Offline
Member
B
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 10,107
Ten years ago Squid was planning a surprise fortieth birthday party for me - and quietly getting deeper into an affair with a man she did karate with. Right now she is planning a surprise fiftieth birthday party for me. So what has changed a decade after the affair that has been my life's most profound event ?

Positively I am recovered from her A. The devastation it wrought within me at the time has dissipated with each passing year. I am changed but no longer weakened by my cuckolding.

Also my faith walk is transformed beyond all recognition. I have attended a great local church for 8 years, am a leader there and I regularly preach. I have become a praying man. This is very good.

My daughter is now coming up to 21, is at university reading Nursing, while holding down a job in a jewellers to sustain herself. She still lives at home with us. I am very proud of her.

My son is a faithful and handsome 16 year old who has become my gig and rugby buddy. My relationship with my kids could barely be better.

My Harley studies certainly helped me recover even if our marriage didn't. Y'see Squid would rather be within her comfort zone of a miserable distant marriage than be a happy but vulnerable spouse in a loving, intimate marriage. Squid has become more and more like her mom. She is critical, controlling, unforgiving and manipulative. She is genetically incapable of apology or praise. Just like her Mom to be fair. I have learned to live without intimacy or affections, which is hard as they are two major ENs for me.

I quit instigating SF last year, which means we never have SF. Squid would rather die than risk rejection by instigating SF herself.

Our marriage has been functional enough this past decade to provide fertile soil for our children to grow in. We are both very proud of what they have become ! However I can;t help thinking that I should have known early on that we would never recover and I should have divorced Squid after I ended the affair using MB tools. To divorce now would impoverish everyone as we approach retirement. Ten years ago, not so much.

I have stopped running my marriage ministry through my church, as the hypocrisy of telling others how to be happy when it was so obviously far from my own life was too profound for me to sustain. Towards the end of hat ministry last year I found myself advising BS with a profoundly entitled WS to end the affair then divorce to save pain. I can hardly think of a single such marriage who have successfully recovered from an affair.

Please do not consider me a pity case: a profoundly malign thing happened to me, yet I emerged from it alive, with faith and much much knowledge.

I say to any newly betrayed people that I know the living hell you are in seems persistent but you WILL be better in three months than you can even imagine right now. And with a humble WS you can build a wonderful marriage unencumbered by past hurts!

Even if you don't achieve these things you can survive and hold your head up proudly.

I am profoundly grateful to Dr H and his wonderful books, and the blessed vets on these boards. I would be dead without them. Ten years after my life fell in ruin about my ears, i stand tall and proud. Whether my future be wed or not, I will be just fine.

All blessings Marriagebuilding folks !


MB Alumni
Joined: Jun 2013
Posts: 1,391
L
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: Jun 2013
Posts: 1,391
I have read so much about your posts during my short time here and digging through the archives or when an old thread is linked to check out.

I guess personal recovery is every bit as critical as marital recovery to restore the beliefs in the allure of a romantic union.

It seems such a waste though, for one spouse to be so seemingly dedicated to striving for and reaching that plateau, yet so unfortunate that their spouse does not jump in all aboard.

What do you think? Ten years from now, will you be comfortable in the fact that you settled for a companionate marriage, vs. either continuing your efforts to break down the walls built to prevent that achievement or get out while you are still 50 years young?

Is there any fight left in you to pursue changing the marital dynamics that you settled into?

Or, is sometimes, good enough just good enough?

I wish you well Sir. Your path was not easy.

I would be hesitant to so quickly judge the amount of self entitlement shown by any current WS though, because occasionally, their fog does lift, but i defer my opinion to someone else with much longer term experience.

I would encourage you to continue to post and see what comes of any deeper reflection.

LTL

Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 15,806
Likes: 7
M
Member
Offline
Member
M
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 15,806
Likes: 7
Bob, I feel for you and pray for you. You have been an inspiration to many, and we all want to see you get the fulness of what God has to offer in marriage.

IMO, the best kept secret of Marriage Builders is the potential that is there for a husband to turn around a marriage to a reluctant wife. MB does offer a plan and hope for your situation, although a lot of the printed material implies the cooperation of both spouses.

When I finally got to the point where I felt like I was at the end of my rope, I finally went to my doc and got put on antidepressants. It took only three months - during that time I said and did a lot of things I don't think I would've had the courage to say before. I somehow magically acquired the ability that I had lacked to calmly and respectfully complain to Prisca. I wasn't sure if I'd ever make any headway, but I did. I was able to keep myself following the rational plan of making love bank deposits. And it worked - Prisca's feelings about me changed, overwhelmingly. She began to care about me and to care about responding to my complaints.

There is still hope for your marriage, friend. But the problem is that in a depressed state of mind even when others around you can see the solution you personally will still feel that there is no solution.

A husband with a withdrawn wife has got to get both his Giver and his Taker in the game. It's going to require Love Bank deposits and complaints. And eliminating disrespect on your own part. We would not be your friends if we gave you a pass for the disrespectful comments, even as much as she has hurt you. There is a way to recover this, and we would not be your friends if we did not tell you that.


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.
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 2,587
A
Member
Offline
Member
A
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 2,587
Originally Posted By: Bob_Pure


My Harley studies certainly helped me recover even if our marriage didn't. Y'see Squid would rather be within her comfort zone of a miserable distant marriage than be a happy but vulnerable spouse in a loving, intimate marriage. Squid has become more and more like her mom. She is critical, controlling, unforgiving and manipulative. She is genetically incapable of apology or praise. Just like her Mom to be fair. I have learned to live without intimacy or affections, which is hard as they are two major ENs for me.

I quit instigating SF last year, which means we never have SF. Squid would rather die than risk rejection by instigating SF herself.



Lots of disrespect in these couple of paragraphs. Why would anyone be in love with someone who thinks they are critical, controlling, unforgiving and manipulative?

AM


BW - 65
WH - 60
M - 35 years
D-day - 17 Apr 08
DD - 44, DS - 30, DS - 23
H broke contact 11/1/09
Back in love after the worst thing that every happened to us.
Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 76
L
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 76
Originally Posted By: armymama
Originally Posted By: Bob_Pure


My Harley studies certainly helped me recover even if our marriage didn't. Y'see Squid would rather be within her comfort zone of a miserable distant marriage than be a happy but vulnerable spouse in a loving, intimate marriage. Squid has become more and more like her mom. She is critical, controlling, unforgiving and manipulative. She is genetically incapable of apology or praise. Just like her Mom to be fair. I have learned to live without intimacy or affections, which is hard as they are two major ENs for me.

I quit instigating SF last year, which means we never have SF. Squid would rather die than risk rejection by instigating SF herself.



Lots of disrespect in these couple of paragraphs. Why would anyone be in love with someone who thinks they are critical, controlling, unforgiving and manipulative?
AM


Hi armymama, I don't think this is disrespectful. Bob is sharing his assessment of his relationship with us, on a message board. How he relates things to his wife is what matters most. He could convey these thoughts in a loving constructive way which would be a good thing.

My guess is he has, but to no avail.

Joined: May 2008
Posts: 2,587
A
Member
Offline
Member
A
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 2,587
How exactly would you tell someone that they are critical, controlling, unforgiving, manipulative and genetically incapable of apology or praise in a loving, constructive way?

I am reminded of a few US Army chaplains I have known, pious and "pure" and horrible to their wives.


BW - 65
WH - 60
M - 35 years
D-day - 17 Apr 08
DD - 44, DS - 30, DS - 23
H broke contact 11/1/09
Back in love after the worst thing that every happened to us.
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 2,023
T
Member
Offline
Member
T
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 2,023
I believe you've tried and tried and you've been beating your head against a wall, Bob. I am so sorry you haven't found fulfillment in your 'recovery'. I think you are stating fact from your own experience...to us...not necessarily in disrespectful or judgmental way towards her.

It is like you've been two trains on different tracks going the opposite directions ...for years.

Last edited by Trix; 01/11/14 06:00 PM.

Married 1976
Me:BS
Him:FWS
MB Weekend March 2003
2 S's: '77 & '80, 1 D: '82
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 10,107
B
Member
OP Offline
Member
B
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 10,107
Quote:
Why would anyone be in love with someone who thinks they are critical, controlling, unforgiving and manipulative?


Indeed ArmyMama. And she is not.

I will not trot out the efforts I have expended in trying to one-handedly recover our marriage.... Just know that I tried for many many years, without any useful response.. and frankly I felt a bit stupid keeping it up after a while so I quit. And it made no difference to Squids response to our marriage.


MB Alumni
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 5,860
T
Member
Offline
Member
T
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 5,860
BP, at least you got to beat up the OM. There are many that never even got to know who the OM was.

Try a round of counseling with the Harley's to jump start recovery.

Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 2,023
T
Member
Offline
Member
T
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 2,023
I could be wrong but I don't believe she would be interested in counseling with MB...she would refuse....and maybe even laugh at him if he were to suggest it at this point. Lots of time has passed since her A.


Married 1976
Me:BS
Him:FWS
MB Weekend March 2003
2 S's: '77 & '80, 1 D: '82
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,209
D
Member
Offline
Member
D
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,209
I hope you don't mind if I share some thoughts. I know that you have a very long history around here, so I guess I'm going out on a limb. And I haven't read your history. So this is just referencing your recent post.

Yours is in Black, Mine is in Blue.



Written by Bob Pure on 1/9/14

Y'see Squid would rather be within her comfort zone of a miserable distant marriage than be a happy but vulnerable spouse in a loving, intimate marriage.

Is that what she has told you?

Squid has become more and more like her mom. She is critical, controlling, unforgiving and manipulative.

Is this with you AND the kids or just you? do you reward that behavior?

She is genetically incapable of apology or praise. Just like her Mom to be fair.

I can't see how this is not a disrespectful judgement. You see, I can relate a bit as my partner was the same. He cannot logically see the point in apologizing for something unless he understands why it is wrong. But having said that, it is still disrespectful to determine your spouse as "INCAPABLE" when she is capable, just not motivated. When they see a long term benefit, people choose to do many uncomfortable things. To avoid negative consequences they will change their behavior, like end affairs. Your wife is no exception. Dr. Harley has said that most people who make it to the marriage altar are definitely "capable", they just have unhelpful instincts and need to complete a plan of behavioral change to demonstrate thoughtfulness. She is being disrespectful in that she does not accept and acknowledge your hurt, for whatever reason, or she is too concerned about herself (prideful)to care for you by apologizing.

Just like her Mom to be fair.
Can you help me understand why this is fair?

I have learned to live without intimacy or affections, which is hard as they are two major ENs for me.

Been there, done that. So you stopped complaining because you didn't want to rock the boat? Has your Taker disappeared? I guess you have found a way to live divorced, without the paper.

Squid would rather die than risk rejection by instigating SF herself.

Been there, done that. On the Not receiving end also.

I should have known early on that we would never recover and I should have divorced Squid after I ended the affair using MB tools. To divorce now would impoverish everyone as we approach retirement.

Does she know that you regret being married to her, but prefer it to poverty? Ouch.

Please do not consider me a pity case: a profoundly malign thing happened to me, yet I emerged from it alive, with faith and much much knowledge.

So glad that you have faith and knowledge. Wouldn't you prefer to have affection and sex? I do pity you a bit. But I also pity your wife. How can she feel safe initiating with you when you regret being married to her?

I hope that she can break through her walls someday, and that you can be a loving protector to her once she does. Would she laugh at you and your MB ideas if the alternative were poverty? Yikes. Opposite dilemma.

Have faith. You never know, crazier things have happened. It happened to me. And I would have never believed it. I hope it sticks smile

Joined: May 2008
Posts: 2,587
A
Member
Offline
Member
A
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 2,587
Originally Posted By: Bob_Pure
Quote:
Why would anyone be in love with someone who thinks they are critical, controlling, unforgiving and manipulative?


Indeed ArmyMama. And she is not.

I will not trot out the efforts I have expended in trying to one-handedly recover our marriage.... Just know that I tried for many many years, without any useful response.. and frankly I felt a bit stupid keeping it up after a while so I quit. And it made no difference to Squids response to our marriage.


We are not meant to live this way. You are a young man. Don't spend another 30+ years like this.

AM


BW - 65
WH - 60
M - 35 years
D-day - 17 Apr 08
DD - 44, DS - 30, DS - 23
H broke contact 11/1/09
Back in love after the worst thing that every happened to us.
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 360
B
Member
Offline
Member
B
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 360
Bob,

I'm a newbie here, so if I am out of place asking things, please met me know.

Has your W been like this the whole 9-10 years? Or have some things changed over the last several years? Does your wife have some hormonal issues that are aggravating her ability to recover? Or is she possibly still in contact with the OM?

Wishing you the best. I hope things do get better for you.


W (me) - 40
H - 44
M 15 years, 2 kids
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 5,860
T
Member
Offline
Member
T
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 5,860
Originally Posted By: Trix
I could be wrong but I don't believe she would be interested in counseling with MB...she would refuse....and maybe even laugh at him if he were to suggest it at this point. Lots of time has passed since her A.


At this point it does not matter what she cares. He is here. He is not happy. Maybe he can get a professional view that will help him to get to the next step. Staying were he is not his best choice.

Though many BH stay in limbo forever.

Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 1,153
2
Member
Offline
Member
2
Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 1,153
Originally Posted By: markos
It took only three months - during that time I said and did a lot of things I don't think I would've had the courage to say before. I somehow magically acquired the ability that I had lacked to calmly and respectfully complain to Prisca. I wasn't sure if I'd ever make any headway, but I did. I was able to keep myself following the rational plan of making love bank deposits. And it worked - Prisca's feelings about me changed, overwhelmingly. She began to care about me and to care about responding to my complaints.

There is still hope for your marriage, friend. But the problem is that in a depressed state of mind even when others around you can see the solution you personally will still feel that there is no solution.

A husband with a withdrawn wife has got to get both his Giver and his Taker in the game. It's going to require Love Bank deposits and complaints. And eliminating disrespect on your own part. We would not be your friends if we gave you a pass for the disrespectful comments, even as much as she has hurt you. There is a way to recover this, and we would not be your friends if we did not tell you that.


This is Gold. Terrific advice and insight.

How difficult it was for me to get to this place too, Marcos. And what a difference it has made in our M once we developed these skills.

I would venture to guess that there is an overwhelming majority of marriages that suffer because of the lack of ability to accomplish this.

Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 15,806
Likes: 7
M
Member
Offline
Member
M
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 15,806
Likes: 7
Originally Posted By: 20YearHistory
Originally Posted By: markos
It took only three months - during that time I said and did a lot of things I don't think I would've had the courage to say before. I somehow magically acquired the ability that I had lacked to calmly and respectfully complain to Prisca. I wasn't sure if I'd ever make any headway, but I did. I was able to keep myself following the rational plan of making love bank deposits. And it worked - Prisca's feelings about me changed, overwhelmingly. She began to care about me and to care about responding to my complaints.

There is still hope for your marriage, friend. But the problem is that in a depressed state of mind even when others around you can see the solution you personally will still feel that there is no solution.

A husband with a withdrawn wife has got to get both his Giver and his Taker in the game. It's going to require Love Bank deposits and complaints. And eliminating disrespect on your own part. We would not be your friends if we gave you a pass for the disrespectful comments, even as much as she has hurt you. There is a way to recover this, and we would not be your friends if we did not tell you that.


This is Gold. Terrific advice and insight.

How difficult it was for me to get to this place too, Marcos. And what a difference it has made in our M once we developed these skills.

I would venture to guess that there is an overwhelming majority of marriages that suffer because of the lack of ability to accomplish this.


Thanks, 20year. It's an amazing discovery - I wish I could learn how to effectively get it across to others.

Once you get to this point, things suddenly start to seem so obvious. The old debates/fights we used to have seem so pointless, painful, and unproductive - the way forward when we have a conflict is now crystal clear because we know how to negotiate and have the habit built into us.

But it is so hard to explain when people are not there themselves. Dr. Harley is a real genius for being able to do this!


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.
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 10,107
B
Member
OP Offline
Member
B
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 10,107
Friends, I thank you for your investment. I have tried everything for a long time.
I ran a Marriagebuilding ministry for my church and Squid joined in it with me. She actually taught from the front with me on the principles of MB, then steadfastly refused to apply them in our marriage. She has acknowledge that I have communicate what are LBs to me and ENs to me, but "its just not me" to make those changes in behaviour. I have for long periods invested in her ENs and avoided LBs to the great improvement of Squids life, and no commensurate improvement in mine. After many years of this I just felt silly doing it so I quit investing to my detriment. I communicate respectfully and very rarely LB with Squid.

Without exposing inappropriate detail I have asked Squid:

* Is there a reason why you will not show me affection ? A: Its a bit pathetic that you need so much "touchy feely" - man up. ( she was very affectionate and proactive with OM, and with me some years ago)
* Have I explained clearly that it feels to me like I am constantly criticized, and I feel like I live under your contempt ? - Answer : I can't say anything can I ? You're not perfect I have a right to complain !

I could go on but it is depressing.

Squid's mother was a fairly unique example of a wholly entitled human being, and there are traits of that in all three sisters. Genetics I guess.

She asked why I seemed sad at Christmas and i explained that i felt lonely. She replied that I chose to not spend the evenings with her ( watching the kind of TV that makes my IQ run out of my ears and make pools on the floor)so it was my fault.

She constantly offers advice and comments as to how i should do things. When drunk at Christmas she actually said " I wish you'd do something F'in stupid so you can't keep lording my affair over me ( I don't).

I have told Squid as RH and respectfully as I could in answer to her questions that 1) she is the only source of unhappiness in my life and 2)perhaps it would have been better for both of us if we had divorced ten years ago. She responds angrily to this honesty claiming everything is my fault.

She might be right.

if i could press a button and my whole family not be impoverished i would divorce right now. As it is it would condemn Squid and myself to impoverished middle and old age, and our kids would lose our support through college. At fifty that HAS to be a consideration. I do not know what else I can do.

My wife does not seem to want the marriage I want. She has spent ten years avoiding happiness. we started an MB counselling course, completed the questionnaire then Squid changed her mind.


MB Alumni
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 10,107
B
Member
OP Offline
Member
B
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 10,107
markos "us" is the magic word. Where there is the mutual desire of an "us" success is assured.

There is no "us" in my marriage.


MB Alumni
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 784
G
Member
Offline
Member
G
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 784
This posting tugs at me. I appreciate the long suffering and struggle and efforts to want to have a very special connection with your spouse and do the program here and yet remain in limbo.

After time you too wall off. Pretty tough to experience daily rejections. MB program caused me to be hypersensitive or aware of these feelings. Not a bad thing to motivate.But I am in chronic physical pain from nerve and arthritic condition and this extra sensitivity like chronic physical pain takes on a life of its own and is destructive of the host--me.

Like physical pain you have to control it or it will control you. Its hard to complain, ssk for your needs to be met, and continue to give of yourself. Dr Harley says you can't keep up plan A forever. I believe it impossible to not build resentment and many negative feeling. This just increased my own pain. One way or another I had to break out.

And I saw my children merging into adulthood were being adversely affected by this demonstration. Its not that they weren't great people. My children are now in their early thirties and taking on bigger responsibilities themselves and not always making positive life choices.

We cannot trust our spouses. They cannot trust us. We can trust God with our spouses and us. Letting go of our marriage from a financial planning perspective could create serious damages. But for me this is the crisis of faith God placed me in. This is the message I gave to my husband. It took a lot for my husband to 'get it." Nearly 10 years really. It was not a mere threat. Like a heros journey this was real.


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

"Love anything and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one...It will not be broken, it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable...The only place outside of Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from dangers and perturbations of love is Hell" c.s. lewis
Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 1,153
2
Member
Offline
Member
2
Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 1,153
Originally Posted By: Bob_Pure
I have tried everything for a long time.


Sorry Bob but no, you haven't. Step 1 = being honest with yourself.

The path you have taken is not what Dr. Harley prescribes. Not even close.

I believe he would have recommended a long time ago that you separate from your W until she was willing to meet your needs and participate in R.

Until you actually get on board with the program, we both know the ending to this story. But, hey, its your life. Your choices.




Last edited by 20YearHistory; 01/14/14 02:36 PM.
Page 16 of 21 1 2 14 15 16 17 18 20 21

Link Copied to Clipboard
Forum Search
Who's Online Now
1 members (1 invisible), 38 guests, and 66 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
Spartan Point He, OnTheRocks, Alise245, CVT, Olivia 80
71,700 Registered Users
Forum Statistics
Forums67
Topics133,537
Posts2,322,688
Members71,700
Most Online3,185
Jan 27th, 2020
Building Marriages That Last A Lifetime
Copyright © 1995-2020, Marriage Builders®. All Rights Reserved.  |  Web Development by SunStar Media.
Site Navigation
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5