A Divorce Busting® Coach can help you save your marriage, even when your spouse wants out. Go to the new Divorce Busting® Store where you can sign up for Divorce Busting® Coaching and purchase Michele's Audios, Videos and eBooks that you can immediately download. Start taking the steps that will help you get your marriage back on track right away.
Page 2 of 13 < 1 2 3 4 ... 12 13 >
Topic Options
#2205245 - 12/13/11 09:36 PM Re: What do I do next? Part 3 [Re: luvhurts49]
Accuray Offline
Member

Registered: 07/20/11
Posts: 2090
Originally Posted By: luvhurts49
I want to hug her and I want her attention, but how do I do that without driving myself nuts?


Yep, painful. Sometimes WAW will "try on" being nice to us. Think of it like putting your toe in the pool. They want to see how it feels, try it on. They're also gauging your reaction and how "safe" it is to be nice to you without you smothering them.

Often, they will catch themselves being nicer or more affectionate than they meant to be, they'll get scared that you will now think everything is OK, and they'll retreat or be mean again to let you know you're still not back "in".

This is the roller coaster -- a little affection followed by ice, followed by affection, followed by ice. Really works you over if you don't understand what's going on.

Your job when this happens is to make it "safe" for W to be affectionate with you. How do you make it safe?

1) Don't escalate -- if she hugs you, don't kiss her in response, don't say "I love you", don't make any overtures that take things up a notch.

2) Let her lead -- if she hugged you yesterday, don't think that means you can hug her today, you can't.

3) Don't shine a spotlight on it -- don't point out that what she's doing is new, different, feels good, or anything. "Act as if" you expected it and it's just normal and no big deal. Let her hug you and be relaxed, don't tense up or pull back, just roll with it.

4) Don't expect -- Don't expect it to happen again. If it does, great, if it doesn't that's OK too. She's doing an experiment. She may want to experiment again and she may not.

If you approach this the right way, SOME people have found that the affection gets more frequent and slowly escalates. This is torture in its own way as once you feel you're starting to make progress you're going to want to race for the finish line.

Given how things are going, the fact that she hugged you is a good sign, she's thinking about being more affectionate. Don't read anything more into it than that.

Accuray
_________________________
Married 18, Together 20, Now Divorced
M: 45, W: 47, D: 15, S: 13, D: 9
Bomb Dropped (EA, D): 7/13/11
Start Reconcile: 8/15/11
ILYBINILWY (again) 7/12
Bomb Dropped (EA, D): 5/1/2014
Divorced 8/2014

Top
#2205390 - 12/14/11 02:02 PM Re: What do I do next? Part 3 [Re: Accuray]
luvhurts49 Offline
Member

Registered: 10/18/11
Posts: 157
Loc: Illinois
Quote:
if she hugs you, don't kiss her in response, don't say "I love you", don't make any overtures that take things up a notch.


Well, I guess I already messed up then because when she hugged me yesterday, I told her "I love you".

While thinking that it felt really good to be hugged by my W again, another thought did enter my head and that was "what does she want?" I thought this because any time that she has been nice to me since she left, it's usually because she's about to tell me something bad or that she wants something.

Quote:
Don't expect it to happen again. If it does, great, if it doesn't that's OK too.


While I hope it does happen again, I'm not counting on it and I certainly know that I can't come to expect it. I also know that I cannot initial that affection myself because she'll just throw it in my face or become lifeless. Like I said above, I'm starting to wonder what it is that she wants.
_________________________
Me36, W38
S12, S3
T20, M4
Bomb dropped 8/18/11
Moved out 8/18/11
Filed for D 10/20/11
OM Confirmed 11/5/11

Top
#2205409 - 12/14/11 03:33 PM Re: What do I do next? Part 3 [Re: luvhurts49]
labug Offline
Member

Registered: 11/25/11
Posts: 9096
Loc: Sonoran Desert
Focus on what you want not what she wants. When the bomb dropped at my house, I was devastated but I knew and even spoke it aloud to my IC, that I didn't want to live my life angry and resentful, one of those women who carried a grudge for the rest of her life. So I got to work on me.
_________________________
Me 57/H 58
M36 S24 S21
Bomb 3/11 Sep 3/11
Piecing 9/13 12/13 Reconciling

"We can make ourselves miserable, or we can make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same"~Carlos Castenada

Top
#2205497 - 12/14/11 08:28 PM Re: What do I do next? Part 3 [Re: labug]
Accuray Offline
Member

Registered: 07/20/11
Posts: 2090
Luvhurts,

I think I used this analogy for someone else, so excuse me for recycling. Your W views you like a giant dammed up body of water. She's afraid that if she's nice to you or shows you affection, the dam will break and you will flood her and sweep her away. You need to show her that the dam won't break and that you can hold your emotions in check.

When she hugged you and you said "I love you", she started to see that dam breaking and felt some spray. That's going to scare her away for a while.

What you did is normal and natural -- it comes from a place of hurt and loss -- so don't feel badly about it.

Going forward if you get a little affection from her, try to keep cool and don't escalate. That shows her that the dam is secure and she can show you affection without then being forced to go swimming.

Accuray
_________________________
Married 18, Together 20, Now Divorced
M: 45, W: 47, D: 15, S: 13, D: 9
Bomb Dropped (EA, D): 7/13/11
Start Reconcile: 8/15/11
ILYBINILWY (again) 7/12
Bomb Dropped (EA, D): 5/1/2014
Divorced 8/2014

Top
#2205501 - 12/14/11 08:50 PM Re: What do I do next? Part 3 [Re: Accuray]
sayitaintso Offline
Member

Registered: 11/04/11
Posts: 951
Thanks for the analogy Accuray, it really hits home for me.

Best!!
_________________________
Me- 34 W-33
S15 S10 S6
Married- 11 Together- 18
Bomb- 6-2011
WAW moves out- 8-2011

"Nothing in the Universe can stop you from letting go and starting over at anytime"- Guy Finley

Top
#2205669 - 12/15/11 03:21 PM Re: What do I do next? Part 3 [Re: sayitaintso]
luvhurts49 Offline
Member

Registered: 10/18/11
Posts: 157
Loc: Illinois
I get your point Accuray, but it's just so hard sometimes not to express my feelings to her. I really think that she does this for one of two reasons. Either it's to mess with me or that she really wants to hold me again.

It's hard for me to grasp where we have had all this affection for 20 years, that she finds it so difficult to give me affection when it seems to me that deep down, she still desires it from me.

For me, saying I love you has always been like saying hello or goodbye to someone. Not to say that I say willy nilly or that I don't really mean it, but that it has always been very easy for me to express myself to my W and kids that way. So when you say that she sees that as the dam breaking, it really makes me look at that from a different perspective.

I know she sees me as this giant roadblock to her happiness, that she really thinks that she cannot be happy with me any longer and because of that, she feels that I should give up our kids (custody) so she can be happy. But the reality is, she isn't acting like the mother our kids know and it really bothers me that she takes this cavalier attitude when it comes to our kids.

She doesn't do the things with the kids that she used to and she doesn't pay them the attention that she used to. It's like she wants to have the time with them so I can't.

I'm not saying that she doesn't love our kids because I know she does, but it just doesn't seem like she is really acting like a mother to them, but more like a baby sitter who gets to spoil them.
_________________________
Me36, W38
S12, S3
T20, M4
Bomb dropped 8/18/11
Moved out 8/18/11
Filed for D 10/20/11
OM Confirmed 11/5/11

Top
#2205698 - 12/15/11 05:09 PM Re: What do I do next? Part 3 [Re: luvhurts49]
Accuray Offline
Member

Registered: 07/20/11
Posts: 2090
Luvhurts,

I know how you feel -- I know you want to tell her you love her. It's ok to feel that way. If you want to DB, you need to fight that urge.

Your W is in crisis. She felt like a coiled spring. She assumed she was unhappy because of you. Now you are gone and she's still not happy. She didn't expect that and it's scary. She doesn't know how to be, so right now she's out of control emotionally.

By giving her space and making yourself a safe place, you give her time to figure out that the grass is not greener, that although certain things about you may have been a challenge for her, you were not the sole root of her unhappiness. She needs space more than anything to figure this out for herself. If she's fending off your emotional overtures, it takes the focus back to you and how you make her feel. You want her to concentrate on how she makes herself feel.

I really can't stress this enough, don't tell her you love her right now, you will get the chance to do it later, but not now. If she hugs you or is affectionate, don't escalate. You want her to leave with the feeling that she took a risk and nothing bad happened, that she didn't leave responsible for your feelings, and it made her feel good to be nice to you.

I'll go further and tell you not to thank her or offer positive commentary in any way. Just role with it, change the subject and talk about something else. Tell her about something you did by yourself or with the kids that made you happy. End with a positive vibe.

Accuray
_________________________
Married 18, Together 20, Now Divorced
M: 45, W: 47, D: 15, S: 13, D: 9
Bomb Dropped (EA, D): 7/13/11
Start Reconcile: 8/15/11
ILYBINILWY (again) 7/12
Bomb Dropped (EA, D): 5/1/2014
Divorced 8/2014

Top
#2205704 - 12/15/11 05:33 PM Re: What do I do next? Part 3 [Re: Accuray]
luvhurts49 Offline
Member

Registered: 10/18/11
Posts: 157
Loc: Illinois
I'll tell you, it's really hard to be positive around my W because of what she's putting me through. It isn't just that she left, stuff with the kids, and everything around that, but also the whole ordeal with the divorce and what her L is telling her and so forth.

It's getting messy in a hurry and I just know that it's probably gonna get worse yet. We both want the same things--our kids and neither of use is gonna give in to the other if it means that we don't get custody.

So how do you continue to try and do all these things when you know that either me and/or my W is gonna get pissed because of what happens during the divorce?

Yes, I want her to feel comfortable with wanting to be around me. I would very much like it if she would show affection towards me. But I really don't think that my W feels unhappy right now. I mean, she has her OM, she's feel to do whatever she wants, she's convinced that's she made the right decision, and she's convinced that we will both be better off apart.

My W doesn't have the financial difficulties that I have right now. With her overtime, she makes more than I do, she lives with her dad and doesn't pay any bills other than her phone bill and groceries, while I have basically nothing left at the end of the month. Hell, I can't even afford to go out to have a beer.
_________________________
Me36, W38
S12, S3
T20, M4
Bomb dropped 8/18/11
Moved out 8/18/11
Filed for D 10/20/11
OM Confirmed 11/5/11

Top
#2205793 - 12/15/11 10:43 PM Re: What do I do next? Part 3 [Re: luvhurts49]
Accuray Offline
Member

Registered: 07/20/11
Posts: 2090
Originally Posted By: luvhurts49
it's really hard to be positive around my W because of what she's putting me through


YES! It's crazy hard. It's the hardest thing you'll ever have to do. DB is NOT intuitive, it requires you to go AGAINST how you're feeling, and that's why it's hard! It sux so very much. BUT, it's better than getting angry, bitter, and resentful and stewing in that. It's shifting your mindset to rise above, to be the better man. The divorce is like a freight train, you can't do a thing about it right now, so you need to surrender to the process and trust your lawyer. That is all you can do, and wasting your emotional energy worrying about it will only make you feel worse. Luvhurts, your position is brutally hard, and no one will tell you that it isn't. Remember, YOU are deciding to embrace the DB approach, because it's better than anything else you could be doing right now.

Originally Posted By: luvhurts49
But I really don't think that my W feels unhappy right now. I mean, she has her OM, she's feel to do whatever she wants, she's convinced that's she made the right decision, and she's convinced that we will both be better off apart.


You know she's unhappy based on how she's treating the kids. If she were happy with herself, would she be acting that way? The OM relationship is not real, it's based on a fantasy. I guarantee you that's starting to crumble by now. The stuff that she thought was cute before is now getting annoying, it's raising doubts, and that is going in both directions.

In addition, she's being mean to you. Think back in your life, were you ever happy with yourself when you were being mean to someone? Even if you felt they deserved it, if you saw that they were in pain, deep down didn't that evoke some feelings of guilt?

You've said that she's saying crazy things like you're trying to take the kids away from her when you've done nothing to suggest that. I'm SURE she realizes deep down that she's making you out to be the villain when you are not, and that makes her very uncomfortable. That's a fantasy that she's clinging to -- she's probably starting to realize there are some holes in it, and she doesn't like that.

If she didn't care about you, she wouldn't bother to be mean to you -- you wouldn't even be on her radar screen. If she were truly done with you, she'd probably treat you with compassion -- why not?

The way she's treating the kids and you should tell you more than anything else that she is not at peace -- she's in crisis. Who wouldn't be in her situation?

If you can shift your perspective and see her as someone who is hurt, scared, and trying to keep it together the only way she knows how, you may get some comfort by interpreting what she says and does differently.

What if you told her "I can imagine this is very difficult for you, if there's a way I can work with you to make this process easier let me know what it is. It's important to me to continue to be a father, and I would like you to continue to be a mother. I would not try to take the kids away from you, and I would hope that you feel the same. How can we make this easier on both of us? We both want to be happy."

Then *listen* to what she has to say, validate it, and see if there's something there you can work with. If she comes at you with something crazy or spiteful, be the better man -- "I can see you're in pain right now. Why don't you give it some thought and if you want to discuss it later we can."

Think about how you would have interacted with her before, the things that drove her nuts, and do a 180 -- don't talk over her, don't keep arguing until you're "right", demonstrate that you are not the man she expects.

Accuray
_________________________
Married 18, Together 20, Now Divorced
M: 45, W: 47, D: 15, S: 13, D: 9
Bomb Dropped (EA, D): 7/13/11
Start Reconcile: 8/15/11
ILYBINILWY (again) 7/12
Bomb Dropped (EA, D): 5/1/2014
Divorced 8/2014

Top
#2205895 - 12/16/11 02:58 PM Re: What do I do next? Part 3 [Re: Accuray]
luvhurts49 Offline
Member

Registered: 10/18/11
Posts: 157
Loc: Illinois
Accuray, I have to tell you, a lot of what you say makes a lot of sense, but I have a hard time not thinking about things. I know I should just let the lawyer deal with things, but I still find myself thinking about the end result or what the end result could be. It does drive me nuts, but I can't seem to be able to shut it off.

Now as far as the OM, if the relationship was starting to crumble, why would my W even bother buying him an X-mas present? While I do hope that you are right, I just don't see the R ending with the OM any time soon. I think that they have had too much time "being friends" and working together to not have seen the faults of the other person by now.

So now, my W, who has had this mean streak to her for the past couple of months, has now started being a little nicer to me. Is the holidays or is it that she is truly done with me? I wish I knew.

My oldest son still says that she doesn't do things with them or really even talks to them. She sits on the couch and plays on her phone while the kids watch TV. My son is afraid to tell her how he feels or say anything to her because he doesn't want to get yelled at. I'm sorry, but your own kids should never feel afraid to ever speak to their own parents. That right there shows that something is wrong.
_________________________
Me36, W38
S12, S3
T20, M4
Bomb dropped 8/18/11
Moved out 8/18/11
Filed for D 10/20/11
OM Confirmed 11/5/11

Top
Page 2 of 13 < 1 2 3 4 ... 12 13 >


Moderator:  dbmod, Virginia 

Save Your Marriage! Schedule Online

Schedule a phone consultation with a Divorce Busting® Coach! Call: 800-664-2435 or 303-444-7004