Marriage Builders®
Posted By: allfalldown 15 hours a week? - 12/29/11 06:48 PM
Just wondering how all of you military wives like me manage to get in the recommended 15 hours per week of "Undivided Attention" time with your spouse? I like the whole Marriage Builders ideology and method, but when I saw this recommendation my jaw fell to the floor. That seems impossible for us. My husband work 65-70 hrs/week. No he cannot quit his job as he signed a 10 yr committment the military. If he quit, he'd get court-martialed!

We also have three children ages 5, 2 and 1 that he rarely sees because of his work schedule. He usually leaves before they wake in the morning and arrives after they are asleep at night, so he goes days and sometimes weeks without seeing them. That's not even to mention all the time he is deployed and never sees any of us! I actually feel like we have more contact with him when he is deployed than when he is living here and working 70 hours per week.

We will be separating from the military at our first opportunity because it has been so hard on our family and marriage, unfortunately we still have about 3 years left and I am not sure our marriage can survive that long.
Posted By: MelodyLane Re: 15 hours a week? - 12/29/11 07:11 PM
Well, you can't do that when he is deployed, but you can when he is not! What you do is put aside less important things like child care [which can be hired out] and make room for your marriage. If you put your marriage first and every thing else next, you can find the time. Most people refuse to do that though and then they wonder why they are divorced. crazy

Can you imagine ever falling in love with someone if you only spent 30 minutes with them a week? It would be impossible. But couples expect to stay in love when they completely neglect their marriages. They are then SHOCKED when they fall out of love and find themselves on the door of the divorce court.

It is impossible to stay in love, though, if you don't spend that UA time with your spouse. And people who are not in love get divorced.

When you neglect anything, it will crumble and fall apart. A marriage is no different. I would read through these articles and see what you think:

The Policy of Undivided Attention

Caring for Children Means Caring for Each Other
Posted By: allfalldown Re: 15 hours a week? - 12/29/11 07:19 PM
Oh I agree wholeheartedly that it would be totally easy to be in/stay in love if we could give each other that 15 hours per week. As soon as I read that I thought "Well OF COURSE we could stay in love if we had that!" Couldn't anyone? That would be easy if we had that time, but the problem is we don't.

I figure my husband has about 91 waking hours each week. If he spends 70 of them at work and 15 with me (and no kids) that leaves him precisely 6 hours of waking time to spend with either the kids or with the whole family together. Family involvement is one of my top Emotional Needs and him spending 6 hours a week with the kids is certainly not going to meet that need for me.
Posted By: allfalldown Re: 15 hours a week? - 12/29/11 07:36 PM
And to take the question one step further.. If there is no possible way we can meet each others emotional needs as long as he has this job and he has to do this job for 3 more years....

Do we suffer through 3 more years and hope it changes eventually? We've already suffered through 7 years of neglecting each other--I honestly don't think we can survive 3 more.

If there is no possible way to meet each others' EN's, should we stay married?
Posted By: MelodyLane Re: 15 hours a week? - 12/29/11 09:29 PM
Originally Posted By: allfalldown


I figure my husband has about 91 waking hours each week. If he spends 70 of them at work and 15 with me (and no kids) that leaves him precisely 6 hours of waking time to spend with either the kids or with the whole family together. Family involvement is one of my top Emotional Needs and him spending 6 hours a week with the kids is certainly not going to meet that need for me.


BUT.... FC is not going to sustain the love in your marriage. It is not an intimate emotional need. People don't fall in love over FC because it is not an intimate EN.

Your H has 112 waking hours each week. [168-56=112] He works 60-70, which leaves 47 hours, in which he could find 15 hours for you and 15 for your children and 17 extra hours to boot!
Posted By: allfalldown Re: 15 hours a week? - 12/29/11 10:02 PM
I guess we can dispute how long my husband sleeps each night. Eight hours is not enough for either of us as we still have children that wake up at night (between the 3 of them--one is up every night). I guess we can compromise and saw that he has 101 waking hours. 65 at work, 15 for me, 15 for kids and 6 for himself. I guess that works. I'll run it by him and see if he agrees. I honestly think he might want more than 6 hours for himself. I guess he should take that out of time with the kids since as you said FC isn't going to save a marriage, but UA will?
Posted By: allfalldown Re: 15 hours a week? - 12/29/11 10:04 PM
By the way, do you all know how heavenly 15 hours a week alone with my husbands sounds!? SO GREAT! I've never had that much alone time with anyone (except my kids of course). I never had that much alone time with my husband when we were dating and I certainly didn't even have half that time per week spent on my emotional AP. If we can make 15 hours/wk work--we are SET.
Posted By: MelodyLane Re: 15 hours a week? - 12/29/11 10:04 PM
Originally Posted By: allfalldown
I guess he should take that out of time with the kids since as you said FC isn't going to save a marriage, but UA will?


Let me put it this way, you won't fall in love without UA time. It takes 20-25 hours to CREATE and 15 hours per week to MAINTAIN romantic love.

Keep in mind, it is the most important time of your week. More important than the time you spend at work, with your kids, etc. It is the most important part of your lives. If you value your marriage you will FIND the time.
Posted By: Atastandstill41 Re: 15 hours a week? - 07/18/12 11:49 AM
My husband and I are in different locations. We try to
Have a secret rendezvous (just he and I) at least once a month. So, I can see 72 hours a month. smile. We are ten hours away from each other and he's a 1SG so time is definitely not on our side. Any suggestions?
Thank you for your commitment, and know it will take prayer and God to move forward. Not sure if it is clear why your husband was seeking seperattion, but my first suggestion would be to determine what make him send those papers.
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