Marriage Builders®
I was in a desperate time in my life, severely depressed and suffering from PTSD. I had just been kicked out of the Army basic training for being too sick, and couldn't find a job anywhere. My aunt was kicking me out because I didn't have money for rent, in the middle of winter in Denver. I saw my only options as being a live-in housekeeper, a stripper, or finding a guy to take care of me.

I fielded some creeps, and went out with the first decent sounding guy who responded to my craigslist ad for a date. It felt wrong, but I went from dinner to a movie, and when he touched my back, my head was screaming at me "NO, NO, NO, NO, DO NOT WANT!" But I submitted to it because I thought that maybe I could get subsistence if I could just be what he wanted me to be, so that I wouldn't be out on the street. I acted like I liked it, and agreed to another date, even though I dreaded it.

Within three days, I was sleeping at his apartment although I hated myself for it, and a few days after, moved all my stuff in because I was afraid that he would say "no," and I would have nowhere to keep the little I had. I couldn't even afford the registration for my car.

Within three weeks, I was sleeping with him, although I would have sooner cut my own hand off if it guaranteed my subsistence, thinking that if I gave him whatever he wanted, I could at least have a roof over my head. I cleaned his apartment, hoping that if I was useful enough, and pleasing enough, he wouldn't kick me out. Whatever I had to do, whatever I had to be, to survive, I thought I was lucky that anyone would even take in damaged goods like me.

Then I got an STI... you know, down THERE. It came as a surprise. Then I figured that even if I got back on my feet, NOBODY would want me after that. So I egged him into proposing to me, but I did it subtly, so that he would think it was his idea. When he did, I wanted to scream, "NO!" but I acted excited, I think, and said "yes." And my heart sank. But I figured that I owed it to him, for taking me in, and for my leading him on... and because I thought nobody else would ever want me.

When I said "I do" at the 'paperwork' wedding... the dissociation and sense of loss and horror at what I had done was overwhelming, because I had truly wanted to say, "I can't, I don't want to, please please don't make me!" At the wedding for the family, I could not honestly and soberly repeat my vows in front of them, so I ended up getting inebriated beforehand, because I thought... "If I can't say it sober, I guess I'll have to find a way that I CAN say it." And after that ceremony, after the numbing effects of the alcohol wore off, the heartbreak nearly tore me in half.

I care about this guy... as a friend. I want the best for him. But I don't want him to touch me. I never did. And I really, really, REALLY don't want to have sex with him. I never did want to. I tried to want to. I made a list of all of his good attributes, I tried to be attracted to him. I tried to want him. After six years, I still don't. I've submitted, I've prayed to God. I gave and served, because that's what I was supposed to do. I still do. But I don't want to.

I don't have an aversion to sex itself. But think of one person you were just never attracted to, no matter how many good qualities they might have. You can appreciate and respect and care about them, but you'd slap a restraining order on them if they tried to touch you intimately. You know, if you hadn't gone and married them.

Oh, and in the midst of the depression, about three years into the marriage... I didn't care what happened to me. I let him have sex whenever he wanted, and, oops, I got pregnant. So now we have a little girl who's almost two and a half years old.

Yes, I've submitted myself. No, I'm not looking for a divorce. Yes, I've done the Love Dare, watched Fireproof, gone through Love and Respect, done Lies Women Believe. Yes, I know what I'm "supposed to do." Yes, regardless of circumstances, I got myself into a situation, I made a promise that binds me for life. I made my bed, now I have to lay in it.

I know my heart is supposed to be in it... but it isn't.

I give him sex multiple times a week, clean house, am a stay at home mom. No, I don't have a problem doing that. I have a problem with *wanting* to do that.

No, I have no desire to hurt the man I married. No, I have no desire to be back in the same situation that led me to say "yes" to this one.

I realize that this is, whether I like it or not, now a family unit because we have a child, and it is my duty to stay and attend my obligations and responsibilities. No, I don't have a problem doing that.

My heart isn't in it.

But I obey, I submit, like a good wife should. Because that's what I signed up to do. And I am bound to my word, before man and God.
Impossible,

Welcome to Marriage Builders. Sorry for the things that have brought you here.

We aren't about submission. We are all about creating a romantic, loving, sustainable marriage. It isn't impossible to fall in love with someone even if you aren't in love right now.

You said you were transferred something. I assume your H transferred it to you. Do you know whether or not he is faithful to you? If he isn't it may change our advice.
My husband has been absolutely faithful to me he had it due to a past marriage.
Hello IG, welcome to Marriage Builders. The problem in your marriage is that you are not in love. Women need to feel a strong emotional attachment and have the prospect of enjoyment in order to desire sex. There are many reasons you are not in love and one of the main reasons is that you are making sacrifices. Sacrifices lead to incompatibility because they make the marriage an unpleasant place. Having sex with your husband because of a perceived obligation makes the problem worse. Sure, you want to meet your spouse's emotional needs, but meeting them in a way that is unpleasant to you pretty much ensures you won't be doing that for long.

The solution is to create a romantic marriage. Once you do that, the sexual problems will disappear.

I would get the book, Fall in Love, Stay in Love and it will give you the plan to turn this around. In the meantime, this article explains how the program works: How to Create Your Own Plan to Resolve Conflicts and Restore Love to Your Marriage
Her main reasons behind submission and obligation is her Christian values, and what God commands us to do. Her our biggest issue is I (her husband) have and always will love her but she has never loved me 99% of these books do not cover what to do if there was no love or romance or attraction to start with. Yes we have and are currently going to marriage counseling. Right now is very hard for her because we are stationed in oahu and are away from her trusted friends.
Originally Posted By: jltab0
Her main reasons behind submission and obligation is her Christian values, and what God commands us to do.


The Bible tells us to submit to one another. Her approach of submission to you is the major reason why she can't fall in love with you. Nowhere does the Bible tell us to SACRIFICE to our spouse, a marriage killer that only creates incompatibility and kills romance.

Dr. Harley, clinical psychologist and founder of Marriage Builders, is a Christian theologian and his program is based on biblical principles. He addresses it here: What’s Wrong with Unconditional Love (Part 2) by Willard F. Harley, Jr., Ph.D.

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Her our biggest issue is I (her husband) have and always will love her but she has never loved me 99% of these books do not cover what to do if there was no love or romance or attraction to start with.


Marriage Builders DOES tell you how to fall in love. Marriage Builders is not the same as other marriage programs. Very few marriage programs understand marriage and don't even believe in romantic love.

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Yes we have and are currently going to marriage counseling.


I am sorry to hear that. You won't get far with traditional marriage counseling because they have no plan for you to fall in love. Traditional marriage counseling has an 84% failure rate and marriage counselors have a higher divorce rate than the general population. They have no plan to create romantic love in your marriage because they have no earthly idea how it is created.
You can contact Dr Harley directly and discuss the practice of sacrifice and submission in marriage @ mbradio@marriagebuilders.com. [it is free] He will be glad to discuss his perspective and help you understand why your wife is not in love with you. Some of his posts on this subject might help:

Originally Posted By: Dr Bill Harley posting to a pastor who believed in sacrifice
Uh, where do I begin. I can't tell you how many couples I've counseled where one spouse did just what you suggested -- sacrifice their own enjoyment for the pleasure of their spouse. The reason I'm counseling them, of course, is that the one doing the sacrificing eventually can't take giving without receiving anymore, and wants a divorce. One recent cases that comes to mind is a pastor's wife. He gave your message to his wife throughout their marriage. They have reconciled, but only because he finally understands the concept of mutual care. Unless both he and his wife enjoy their sexual experience, she comes to hate it. Now they make love almost every day, not out of sacrifice, but out of mutual enthusiastic agreement. By the way, they've given up OS.

It's dangerous stuff you're recommending. It ruins marriages.

Best wishes,
Dr. Harley


Originally Posted By: Dr Bill Harley
The secret to understanding your spouse is to think like your spouse's Taker. It's easy to appeal to your spouse's Giver. "If she really loves me, she'll let me do this." or "He'll be thoughtful enough to agree with that, I'm sure." But lasting peace must be forged with your spouse's Taker, so your solutions must appeal to your spouse's most selfish instincts. At the same time, it must also appeal to your own selfish instincts.

Resist one type of solution that your Giver and Taker may suggest the "I'll let you do what you want this time if you let me do what I want next time" solution. For example, imagine that you want to go out with your friends after work, leaving your spouse with the children. So to arrive at an enthusiastic agreement for that thoughtless activity, you suggest that you take the children another night so that your spouse can go out with his or her friends.

What you're really proposing here is that each of you will sacrifice so that the other can have fun. The problem with that arrangement is that you are agreeing to behavior that makes one of you unhappy whenever the other is happy, and as I've said earlier, once you have made an agreement, it can easily turn into a habit.

The Giver and Taker suggest those kinds of win-lose solutions because they don't understand win-win solutions. Their concept of fairness is that if you are both suffering equally, that's fair. My view of negotiation is that by the time you are finished you should have arrived at a solution where neither of you suffers. And each part of the solution should not require either of you to sacrifice so that the other can be happy.

One last point: Whenever a conflict arises, keep in mind the importance of depositing as many love units as possible while avoiding withdrawals. In other words, use the opportunity to find a solution that will make your spouse happy, and avoid solutions that make either of you unhappy. here


Originally Posted By: Bluesman
I disagree with the MB opinion that sacrifice does not tend to create appreciation. My father worked 3 jobs to support our family and my mother always took care of my father, my sisters, and myself before satisfying her own wants and needs. I have profound appreciation and love for these efforts. I have seen many successful marriages that involve sacrifice in raising autistic and handicapped children. In my marital experience during the first few years, I sacrificed enthusiastically to try to attain a peaceful and loving sanctuary for our marriage. These efforts failed because it seems that the more I gave, more was expected of me. It seems the priority of our marriage is that her needs (and all her wants, there is a difference between wants and needs) were met when she wanted and how she wanted TO THE LETTER. Otherwise the destructive cycles continue. She has always had the freedom to do what she wants. Should one not show gratitude for this and all the other blessings the good Lord has bestowed upon us?
Please W, be truthful. And please please be honest who has given and who has taken in our marriage. And please please take responsibility for your part in curtailing the giver and empowering the taker.


Originally Posted By: Dr Bill Harley RESPONSE
If sacrifice was all you say it was, we wouldn't be talking about it. A sacrifice is a unilateral gift, something that doesn't require appreciation because it's given unconditionally. My point is that, while there is a place for sacrifice in life, in marriage it tends to be sore spot. When one spouse gives to the other sacrificially, even if it's done enthusiastically, it tends to be unappreciated. If appreciation is required, it's no longer unconditional or sacrifical. Something is expected in return that makes the act worth doing, which takes it out of the realm of sacrifice.

I suggest that you and your wife leave the past in the past and begin negotiating for your future together, with mutual respect and appreciation for what you do for each other.
here
Up until this July I had not been the best of husbands. I had a realization and an eye opening when I started putting God first in my life. Sense then I have been listening to what she says her boundaries are, physical , mental, emotional and spiritual needs. She says that she saw a huge change in me and how I am now a better husband and father. I still ask her if there is any thing I can do for her, and how to apply the knowledge and understanding for her needs. She says she does not need my love anymore or my approval, or my help in any matter, because she receives all love from God and has no needs of this world. Even with this I still love her , accept her and try to meet any and all needs the best I can. We talk on a regular basis about our relationship; where it is and where it is going, the best she can say for now is we are working on becoming friends. She has stated that her biggest issue is that she is convicted that she needs to want to love me, however her heart doesn't want to want to love me, and she cannot figure out how to change the non existent want to love me. I have explained that in my biblical view that submitting isn't the same as sacrificing , I view it like I do as a subordinate peer in the military, yes I may have positional authority over that person, yes I may have the final say so, however the other's thoughts, skills, words, and works are just as valuable as mine.
Yes, I have and always will be faithful, I painfully left my first marriage due to a very extreme amount of infidelity to the extent of where my previous wife didn't know the true father of the child and it was a 1 out of 8 odds. DNA tests revealed the child was not mine but I still loved her, I cannot imagine myself putting that pain on another human.
Originally Posted By: jltab0
Her main reasons behind submission and obligation is her Christian values, and what God commands us to do.


God never commands husbands to straighten their wives out. You'd have to add that to the Word of God to come to that conclusion.

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Her our biggest issue is I (her husband) have and always will love her


Love isn't just something you say - it's something you do.
"Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth."
http://biblehub.com/1_john/3-18.htm
"If anyone says, 'I love God,' and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen."
http://biblehub.com/1_john/4-20.htm

You're being disrespectful toward your wife, and that isn't love.

"In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God's gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered."
http://biblehub.com/1_peter/3-7.htm

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but she has never loved me 99% of these books do not cover what to do if there was no love or romance or attraction to start with.


You are right. Most people don't know anything about how to create the feeling of love. But Dr. Harley does, so you have come to the right place! If you will start practicing the caring love Dr. Harley explains, your wife will begin to feel the feeling of romantic love. The program works!

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Yes we have and are currently going to marriage counseling.


I would drop it like a hot potato since most marriage counselors don't know anything about how to create the feeling of romantic love, either.

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Right now is very hard for her because we are stationed in oahu and are away from her trusted friends.


She needs YOU to be her trusted friend!
Originally Posted By: jltab0
I have explained that in my biblical view that submitting isn't the same as sacrificing , I view it like I do as a subordinate peer in the military, yes I may have positional authority over that person, yes I may have the final say so, however the other's thoughts, skills, words, and works are just as valuable as mine.


What your wife describes is sacrifice. For her to meet your needs in a way that does not benefit her is sacrifice. The Bible says you should submit to one another. That does not mean that you make sacrifices or relegate decision making. You should both have the "final say so" over decisions that effect your marriage. Otherwise, you will never have a compatible marriage. Decisions should be made together, not unilaterally.

Marriage Builders does have a plan to create romantic love in your marriage. I believe God led you both to this forum, hopefully you are able to put aside your own ideas and follow this program. It really does work.

The question is, do you want her to be in love with you or not?
Absolutely
Hi, Impossible!
I can tell you from experience that it is entirely possible to fall in love with your husband when you don't have any such feelings for him. This program, if followed, will show you how.

One question: Do you have any friends that you can confide in? Especially male friends? (Online friends count)
Originally Posted By: jltab0
Absolutely

If you want your wife to be in love with you, she will need to be your equal in everything, especially decision making. As long as she is your subordinate peer, she cannot fall in love with you.
BTW, I am not some radical feminist. Markos and I consider ourselves conservative, fundamental Christians. I used to believe in "Biblical submission" (the type you are talking about), and it really put a wrench in my marriage.

This subject troubled me for awhile. I couldn't see how MB squared away with what I had always been taught about submission and the wife's role. That is, until I went back and read the original scripture that the teaching of "biblical submission" is based on.

Originally Posted By: The Bible, Ephesians 5:22-24

22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord.
23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.
24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

That's where we usually stop. But there's more.

Originally Posted By: The Bible, Ephesians 5:25-32

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her

26 to make her holy, cleansing[a] her by the washing with water through the word,
27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.
28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.
29 After all, no one ever hates their own body, but they feed and care for their body,
just as Christ does the church—
30 for we are members of his body.
31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”
32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church.
33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.


Biblical submission is not the wife doing whatever her husband wants her to do. It is NOT a way of life in which the husband is the leader and has the final say. True Biblical submission and the POJA are essentially the same thing, when you look at these verses.

POJA: Never do anything without the enthusiastic agreement of your spouse.
The wife's submission, according to Ephesians: Respect your husband and care for him by not putting your own desires above his
The husband's role, according to Ephesians: Love your wife as you love your own body, give yourself up for her, care for her

The wife submits to her husband by taking his feelings into account and never doing anything that he is not enthusiastic about. The husband loves and cares for his wife by considering her feelings and desires equal to his own, and never doing anything that she is not enthusiastic about. If he is to love her as his own body, how is he to force her to do something she hates?
Something nobody has asked, is, do I want to fall in love with him?

Because the answer is no.

I don't see the point.

I didn't want the marriage in the first place, but I'm in it, so I'm making the best of it.

Don't get me wrong, I ended up with a pretty decent guy, and yes, I'm thankful for that. I'm grateful for the roof over my head and the food in my belly, and my daughter. I am thankful that I am not oppressed, and that he indulges my hobbies of reading and crocheting. I am grateful that he is kind, and I respect the fact that he works hard to provide for the family. I respect that he is willing to grow.

As for me, I simply have no "fight" left in me. I am exhausted from trying to manufacture a "spark" between him and myself, because I know it's "supposed to" exist in a marriage.

I know what that chemistry is, and I know what it is to joyfully and wholeheartedly serve out of love. I know what it is to want to submit and serve, because I want to lift the other up, out of an overflow of God's love for me. Not subservience, but a powerful association of equals. Perfect? No. Sometimes infuriating? Yes. Painful? Sometimes. But synergistic, not parasitic or mechanical. And no, it wasn't a "romantic" relationship.

That was a long-standing friendship, pre-dating meeting my husband, which I gave up for the sake of this marriage, because said friendship was condemned as being a "slippery slope," etc, and a danger to the marriage, and my husband was uncomfortable with it. And still is, even though it's no longer a thing.

That relationship was not viable as romantic because he was married when I met him, albeit out of similar motivations as I had in marrying my husband. Before I knew he was married, I was aware of a point in time when my heart and soul said with finality, "this one." This one, I chose to love. Not in the romantic sense, necessarily, (no lust, no need, and no sense of pressure or obligation) but unconditionally, though the relationship itself was conditional.

Over the years, the friendship challenged me, pushed me to grow. Forced me to examine myself, my opinions and viewpoints, my attitudes, without making me feel inferior or ignorant. The friendship lit me up from the inside out, made me want to be better. There were no warm fuzzies, and to be frank, at first, I would just as soon have hissed at him as spoken to him. Because he was a cop (and I hadn't had any good experiences with cops) who was assigned to my case when I had a bunch of stuff stolen several years before I met my husband.

Anyway, all that is to say... had my friend and I both been single at that point in time, well, we wouldn't be having this discussion. I'd probably be having a, "this man and his behavior is driving me crazy, how do I handle it" discussion. (Haha. It's a human nature joke. Because it's true.) But those are challenges I would have leaned into, because although it would have been difficult, it would have been what I had wanted, freely chosen, and because I wanted to fight for it, even when it made me cry.

Obviously, that couldn't happen, and I have a different set of challenges. I get that. I accept that. I don't hold that friendship up on a pedestal, or idolize or idealize it, because like I said, every relationship has its own problems. Every one has its frustrations and obstacles, because every one of us is human.

That person, that relationship, is something I had to let go of, because, guess what, I married someone else. And because the effects of that friendship weren't one-sided.

But I know the difference. And I feel sorry for my husband, because he knows all of this, too.

By lying to him and marrying him, I cheated him out of the opportunity to have someone who loved him like that.
Okay, what are you asking us to help you with? You feel you disappointed your husband and cheated him out of what he could have had, and now you want to give him that?
Originally Posted By: ImpossibleGirl
Something nobody has asked, is, do I want to fall in love with him?

Because the answer is no.


Then what do you need from us? We are not here to create marital "friendships," but romantic marriages. If you don't want that, then why are you here?
He wanted me to come post here about this.

Do I want to give him that? No.

But I am told that I "should" want to, and it is implied that there is something wrong with me or my heart because I don't.

So, what's wrong with me?
Originally Posted By: ImpossibleGirl
As for me, I simply have no "fight" left in me. I am exhausted from trying to manufacture a "spark" between him and myself, because I know it's "supposed to" exist in a marriage.


That is because you have been working hard but not smart. You don't know how romantic love is created and have been relying upon wishful thinking. Wouldn't you agree the best outcome is to be in love with your husband?
The idea turns my stomach. There is a resounding "no" from all parts of me that do not use words to communicate.

Logically, it makes sense.
Originally Posted By: ImpossibleGirl
The idea turns my stomach.


Then reject it and move on. Why waste our time?
Because I am "married before God" and "should" want these things, and again, there is apparently something wrong with me if I don't.
Originally Posted By: ImpossibleGirl
Because I am "married before God" and "should" want these things, and again, there is apparently something wrong with me if I don't.


If you decide you want help, let us know. If not, then just move on.
Well, I "should" want help, so tell me what to do, eh?

We aren't supposed to give up and move on from marriages, even if they are less than ideal.
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That was a long-standing friendship, pre-dating meeting my husband, which I gave up for the sake of this marriage, because said friendship was condemned as being a "slippery slope," etc, and a danger to the marriage, and my husband was uncomfortable with it. And still is, even though it's no longer a thing.

That relationship was not viable as romantic because he was married when I met him, albeit out of similar motivations as I had in marrying my husband. Before I knew he was married, I was aware of a point in time when my heart and soul said with finality, "this one." This one, I chose to love. Not in the romantic sense, necessarily, (no lust, no need, and no sense of pressure or obligation) but unconditionally, though the relationship itself was conditional.

Over the years, the friendship challenged me, pushed me to grow. Forced me to examine myself, my opinions and viewpoints, my attitudes, without making me feel inferior or ignorant. The friendship lit me up from the inside out, made me want to be better. There were no warm fuzzies, and to be frank, at first, I would just as soon have hissed at him as spoken to him. Because he was a cop (and I hadn't had any good experiences with cops) who was assigned to my case when I had a bunch of stuff stolen several years before I met my husband.

Anyway, all that is to say... had my friend and I both been single at that point in time, well, we wouldn't be having this discussion. I'd probably be having a, "this man and his behavior is driving me crazy, how do I handle it" discussion. (Haha. It's a human nature joke. Because it's true.) But those are challenges I would have leaned into, because although it would have been difficult, it would have been what I had wanted, freely chosen, and because I wanted to fight for it, even when it made me cry.

Are you still in contact with this friend?
Originally Posted By: ImpossibleGirl
Well, I "should" want help, so tell me what to do, eh?


You are an adult woman who needs to make that decision for herself. It is not my job to tell you what you should do. If you want to turn your marriage around, let us know and we can help. If not, then I wish you the best.
Prisca, as of several weeks ago, no.

He didn't want to be put in the middle of this, and I can't blame him.
Originally Posted By: ImpossibleGirl
Because I am "married before God" and "should" want these things, and again, there is apparently something wrong with me if I don't.

Not really. There is no "should," and there's nothing wrong with you if you don't want to. Naval-gazing like this isn't going to make you happy, but you can waste all your time on doing that if you want. But we don't do that here. Here, we create romantic marriages. If you want to step out and try to create a romantic marriage, we've got the plan. Otherwise, there isn't much we can help you with.
Originally Posted By: ImpossibleGirl
Prisca, as of several weeks ago, no.

He didn't want to be put in the middle of this, and I can't blame him.

If I understand you correctly, you were in contact with him until just a few weeks ago?
Originally Posted By: Prisca
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That was a long-standing friendship, pre-dating meeting my husband, which I gave up for the sake of this marriage, because said friendship was condemned as being a "slippery slope," etc, and a danger to the marriage, and my husband was uncomfortable with it. And still is, even though it's no longer a thing.

That relationship was not viable as romantic because he was married when I met him, albeit out of similar motivations as I had in marrying my husband. Before I knew he was married, I was aware of a point in time when my heart and soul said with finality, "this one." This one, I chose to love. Not in the romantic sense, necessarily, (no lust, no need, and no sense of pressure or obligation) but unconditionally, though the relationship itself was conditional.

Over the years, the friendship challenged me, pushed me to grow. Forced me to examine myself, my opinions and viewpoints, my attitudes, without making me feel inferior or ignorant. The friendship lit me up from the inside out, made me want to be better. There were no warm fuzzies, and to be frank, at first, I would just as soon have hissed at him as spoken to him. Because he was a cop (and I hadn't had any good experiences with cops) who was assigned to my case when I had a bunch of stuff stolen several years before I met my husband.

Anyway, all that is to say... had my friend and I both been single at that point in time, well, we wouldn't be having this discussion. I'd probably be having a, "this man and his behavior is driving me crazy, how do I handle it" discussion. (Haha. It's a human nature joke. Because it's true.) But those are challenges I would have leaned into, because although it would have been difficult, it would have been what I had wanted, freely chosen, and because I wanted to fight for it, even when it made me cry.

Are you still in contact with this friend?

You seem awfully infatuated with this man. That alone will keep you from wanting to create anything romantic with your husband.
Originally Posted By: Prisca
Originally Posted By: ImpossibleGirl
Because I am "married before God" and "should" want these things, and again, there is apparently something wrong with me if I don't.

Not really. There is no "should," and there's nothing wrong with you if you don't want to. Naval-gazing like this isn't going to make you happy, but you can waste all your time on doing that if you want. But we don't do that here. Here, we create romantic marriages. If you want to step out and try to create a romantic marriage, we've got the plan. Otherwise, there isn't much we can help you with.


The problem is that my heart isn't in it, and never has been. And it doesn't want to be. I've prayed about it, prostrated myself before God, for years. I'm to the point of giving up and just doing what I'm "supposed to" because I'm locked into this relationship by the nature of the vows I made.

I have nothing against my husband. I have nothing against working with him to accomplish things. My heart just isn't in romance with him.
It's your choice. You can work the program regardless of how you feel, and you will find later that your heart is in it. Or, not, and keep the status quo. It's your marriage, and the choice is yours.

We can help you if you want the help. Just let us know.


You seem awfully infatuated with this man. That alone will keep you from wanting to create anything romantic with your husband. [/quote]

Yeah, no. About as much as I am infatuated with the friend I call a brother. Which is to say, not at all.

We are all fallible. We are all stupid and selfish and hurt each other. I know his flaws well. I have studied what infatuation is, and it is not this.
Originally Posted By: Prisca
It's your choice. You can work the program regardless of how you feel, and you will find later that your heart is in it. Or, not, and keep the status quo. It's your marriage, and the choice is yours.

We can help you if you want the help. Just let us know.


Way I see it, I've got nothing to lose by trying. So sure. Feelings are just feelings.
Feelings are more than "just feelings." If you believe you would be happier by ending your marriage and moving on, then do so. Nothing wrong with that.

In fact, since he is disrespectful and abusive, it would be a good idea to go ahead and plan for a separation.

Your feelings for your husband are made worse because of the male friend in your life (around here, we call the relationship you've had with him an "emotional affair"). The first step towards a romantic marriage would be for you to cut off contact with him for life, as well as any other male friends you may have. Will you do that?
Originally Posted By: Prisca
Feelings are more than "just feelings." If you believe you would be happier by ending your marriage and moving on, then do so. Nothing wrong with that.

In fact, since he is disrespectful and abusive, it would be a good idea to go ahead and plan for a separation.

Your feelings for your husband are made worse because of the male friend in your life (around here, we call the relationship you've had with him an "emotional affair"). The first step towards a romantic marriage would be for you to cut off contact with him for life, as well as any other male friends you may have. Will you do that?



Um, he isn't disrespectful or abusive.

Divorce is a sin except in the case of infidelity or an unbeliever wanting to leave.

And I have no "desire" for this male friend. Regardless, he has gone his own way permanently, and I have accepted that. In fact, I told him to do so if his friendship with me was a distraction from his own loveless marriage. That wasn't his reason for going, but that was my stance, regardless.

But having no male friends at all? I have no family, and the male friends I do have, I have adopted as my own patchwork family. And frankly, I don't get along well with most women. So no. I am not willing to do that.

I am not willing to isolate myself to create the equivalent of Stockholm Syndrome.
Quote:
But having no male friends at all? I have no family, and the male friends I do have, I have adopted as my own patchwork family. And frankly, I don't get along well with most women. So no. I am not willing to do that.

Then this program cannot help you. I wish you well.
Originally Posted By: ImpossibleGirl
Originally Posted By: Prisca
Feelings are more than "just feelings." If you believe you would be happier by ending your marriage and moving on, then do so. Nothing wrong with that.

In fact, since he is disrespectful and abusive, it would be a good idea to go ahead and plan for a separation.

Your feelings for your husband are made worse because of the male friend in your life (around here, we call the relationship you've had with him an "emotional affair"). The first step towards a romantic marriage would be for you to cut off contact with him for life, as well as any other male friends you may have. Will you do that?



Um, he isn't disrespectful or abusive.

Divorce is a sin except in the case of infidelity or an unbeliever wanting to leave.

And I have no "desire" for this male friend. Regardless, he has gone his own way permanently, and I have accepted that. In fact, I told him to do so if his friendship with me was a distraction from his own loveless marriage. That wasn't his reason for going, but that was my stance, regardless.

But having no male friends at all? I have no family, and the male friends I do have, I have adopted as my own patchwork family. And frankly, I don't get along well with most women. So no. I am not willing to do that.

I am not willing to isolate myself to create the equivalent of Stockholm Syndrome.


You are basically saying you would prefer the company and friendship with about any other man than your husband (which in the bible would be an affair of the heart) while quoting scriptures at us!
Your heart is as wayward as they come and you are already committing infidelity in every way but physical.

This program could give you an amazing, romantic, in love marriage for life even if it seems impossible now- but you would prefer your guy friends. Your choice.
Just don't tell us that's following God.
Quote:
And I have no "desire" for this male friend.
Right. smile Regardless, he creates a contrast effect which your husband cannot compete with. He, and any other male friends you have, will make you feel worse about your husband than you otherwise would. The contrast effect must be eliminated IF you want a romantic marriage.

Without that step, this program cannot help you.
. [/quote]

You are basically saying you would prefer the company and friendship with about any other man than your husband (which in the bible would be an affair of the heart) while quoting scriptures at us!
Your heart is as wayward as they come and you are already committing infidelity in every way but physical.

This program could give you an amazing, romantic, in love marriage for life even if it seems impossible now- but you would prefer your guy friends. Your choice.
Just don't tell us that's following God. [/quote]

Uh, no, I'm not saying that at all. I don't have anything against my husband. I don't prefer the company of "any other man" over his. He has his strengths and good qualities, and I appreciate and encourage those. There are things I do enjoy doing with him. I just don't want the sexual aspect.

You're putting words in my mouth, and I don't appreciate that.
I am just not comfortable with the tactic of isolation and conditioning.
Originally Posted By: ImpossibleGirl
I am just not comfortable with the tactic of isolation and conditioning.

Good! Marriage Builders doesn't use such tactics.
Originally Posted By: Prisca
Originally Posted By: ImpossibleGirl
I am just not comfortable with the tactic of isolation and conditioning.

Good! Marriage Builders doesn't use such tactics.


That's exactly what this sounds like. Isolating myself from all other men so that the man I married unwillingly is the only one in my life, so that I will "fall in love" with him, because I have nothing else to compare him to? Uh, yeah. That's basically simulated Stockholm Syndrome, without a gun to my head.

I already tried that.
ImpossibleGirl, Participation in this program is voluntary. If you do not wish to use this program, we will lock this thread. The purpose of this forum is to help posters with their marital problems using this program. If you are not here for that purpose, there is no reason to keep this thread open. Did you need help with the program? If not, we will lock the thread.
Very well, go ahead and lock it.
Let me know if you decide to use the program and we will unlock it. We wish you the very best.
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