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#2211422 - 01/09/12 06:59 PM Re: (NA) Re: Not sure of next step [Re: Shaky]
penster Offline
New Member

Registered: 11/24/11
Posts: 12
Connection through communicating is the key but you're right take your time.
_________________________
H:36
W:43
M:12
T:15
S:10
D:8
D:4

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#2211520 - 01/10/12 12:40 AM (NA) Re: (NA) Re: Not sure of next step [Re: penster]
dbmod Offline
Member

Registered: 08/05/08
Posts: 2155
^
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dbmod

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#2213569 - 01/17/12 08:14 PM (NA) Re: (NA) Re: Not sure of next step [Re: dbmod]
Shaky Offline
Member

Registered: 10/13/11
Posts: 67
Loc: Hillsboro,Or.
I'm up and down depending on the day. Overall I'm happy with life, hanging out with the kids. Kids are doing great, my son was in his first Chess tournament last weekend, he is 9 and won 3 out of 5 games. Has been playing for 6 months and I'm glad he found something he is interested in besides video games.

Have been to one solo counseling session and it didn't really help much. We talked about how disconnected I feel. Well for me I want her to initiate a little romance. I'm not even sure what I expect but not being touched physically is really hard to deal with.

Wife went on a girl's trip to the beach for this last weekend. I had a few guys over for Friday, had a great time catching up. Haven't seen them in a couple months. I used to host a guys night every Tues. after work before my marriage problems. Just a time to relax, have a few beers and chat. I cut that out after w started giving me the cold shoulder before the big talk.

On Saturday w sister called and wanted the kids overnight for a slumber party. This was the first time I have been home by myself with no w or kids and it was the best night I have had in a long time. Built a fire, watched a movie and read a book.

Still lost and no game plan. I kinda want to put my foot down and call her bluff but I don't see pressing her for answers is going to help my situation.

What are some other ways to show my wife I love her? I think I'm in the waiting stage where she wants to make sure my changes are for real and not just temporary.
_________________________
M 42
W 41
S 10
D 7
M 15 Years
T 20 Years
Divorce busted

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#2214184 - 01/19/12 11:19 PM (NA) Re: (NA) Re: Not sure of next step [Re: Shaky]
Accuray Offline
Member

Registered: 07/20/11
Posts: 2090
Your W told you she wants to "feel loved and appreciated". That's a feeling, so you can't deliver that. You have to ask her "What makes you feel loved and appreciated" and get it down to specifics.

Another way to ask is "when you feel loved and appreciated, what am I doing?". If you can get it down to behaviors, *you* can do those.

I know you took a look at my sitch, I don't know if you read this. When my W and I were in your place, I asked her what was bothering her about being intimate.

She said she was afraid that whenever she was physical or affectionate with me at all, that I would assume it would lead to sex, or try to escalate things. i.e. if she held my hand, I would kiss her, etc. That was too much pressure.

We got through that by discussing it and agreeing that I will never escalate physical affection. If she holds my hand, I can hold hers. If she hugs me, I can hug her. That puts her in control and makes it "safe" to be physical, and physical is a necessary precursor to intimate.

So first, "no escalation"

Secondly, we agreed that my W would be the one to initiate sex. We agreed on a frequency, and she could do it whenever she wanted, but that ideally she'd stick to the agreed upon frequency. This does three things -- once again it puts her in control, it gives her relief from being asked for sex when she doesn't want to provide it, and it saves you from feeling rejected.

If you haven't yet, you should read "The Sex Starved Marriage", it may help you get out of where you are. I would hold off on reading "Passionate Marriage", that will do you more harm than good right now.

Finally, I read in "how to improve your marriage without talking about it" that you and your W should make it a habit to hug for 6 seconds every morning before you leave the house, and for 6 seconds when you meet up again at the end of the day. Make it a rule, it doesn't matter if one of you doesn't want to, and make sure it lasts 6 seconds. This does 3 things -- (1) it helps to release built-up resentments without talking, (2) it helps to get you re-connected, and (3) it helps to strengthen your bonding.

After I read that I read another study that said that women who are hugged regularly for six seconds or more have a bonding response to their partner -- it's a reptilian/mammalian brain thing that is not voluntary.

Hope that helps!

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

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#2216161 - 01/26/12 10:36 PM (NA) Re: (NA) Re: Not sure of next step [Re: Accuray]
Shaky Offline
Member

Registered: 10/13/11
Posts: 67
Loc: Hillsboro,Or.
Accuray-

Thanks for stopping by, I somehow missed your post. In marriage counseling I said I wouldn't pressure her for sex at all and would wait until she is ready. She said holding hands and other intimacy is fine if I want that but sex is out of the question for now.

Well, I'm going on 6 months and still no reaching out from her end. I feel like I'm the only one even trying. If I snuggle with her at night it is me holding her hand or rubbing her back. She never touches me at all, besides the quick hugs and kisses. It is really frustrating because I feel like I have the plague or I'm just not worth the effort on her end.

We always hug(less than 6 sec.) and kiss in the morning and when going to bed. She tells me she loves me but words are not enough I want action. Not sex just touch for now. I'm ok with slow but not me always initiating. Is that too much to ask? Is she afraid if she touches me it will lead to sex? Hello, I already said I wouldn't try anything.

I haven't read "The sex starved marriage", but will download it on my Kindle tonight.

It was so weird we went to a really expensive restaurant last Saturday, had a great time, its her favorite place. After we ate she reminded me about her upcoming Sebatical this summer, she will have 6 weeks off this time and she asked if I would take her to Italy. I about fell off my chair, I'm not getting any of my needs met but she can ask for a trip to Europe? I wanted to ask if she was dellusional? There has been lots of crazy requests like that.

I played it off but she can't seriously think everything is all back to normal can she?
_________________________
M 42
W 41
S 10
D 7
M 15 Years
T 20 Years
Divorce busted

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#2217233 - 01/30/12 07:35 PM (NA) Re: (NA) Re: Not sure of next step [Re: Shaky]
Shaky Offline
Member

Registered: 10/13/11
Posts: 67
Loc: Hillsboro,Or.
My patients is running thin. I can't live like this forever and I can't make my w love me. That is her choice and she has checked out for now.

I'm going to go talk to a lawyer this week to figure out my rights.
_________________________
M 42
W 41
S 10
D 7
M 15 Years
T 20 Years
Divorce busted

Top
#2217300 - 01/30/12 11:19 PM (NA) Re: (NA) Re: Not sure of next step [Re: Shaky]
Accuray Offline
Member

Registered: 07/20/11
Posts: 2090
You're stepping off the cliff there Shaky. If my W had not touched me at all in 6 months I know I would be crazy too, are you sure you've exhausted every avenue except for a lawyer?

If she asked you to take her to Italy 4 days ago, she's obviously thinking longer term. Did you consider actually taking her? Why not?

Here's what I recommend before going the lawyer route:

1) Work with a telephone coach on this site: It costs about the same as a therapy session. If you're ready to spend $10K minimum on a divorce, spending a few hundred bucks on coaching is a drop in the bucket, particularly if you can avoid the $10K plus support going forward. They are much better than IC's because they are solution based and deal with troubled relationships all day long. I was extremely skeptical before I did it, I only bought one call. After that I bought 3 more, then 2 more individual, so I should have just bought the 7. Best money I ever spent, they know their stuff -- try it.

2) Marriage Counseling: I know you tried one IC and it didn't really work for you. I tried several before I found a good one. It's very important that you find one who is solution based and who is trained in couples therapy. Even if you just see them by yourself, don't go to a generalist. See an MC by yourself. If you want to go with W, go see them by yourself first, paint the whole scene from your perspective, and explain what you think W's perspective is. See what the therapist has to say, see if they "get" W. Before you bring W, explain what you want from the joint session, and understand what the MC's approach is going to be.

My W was very resistant to MC and still is. That said, you and she will both say things in front of the MC that you will not say to each other. Also, MC will not let you off the hook as easily and are skilled in getting you both to spill it.

I definitely wouldn't go see a lawyer until you have found a good MC first. They really can help, but they *must* be solution-based. I tried working with ones that aren't, and it doesn't help. They focus on problems and how you feel about them, and how your childhood created those problems and that doesn't get you anywhere. You need to know what to do *now* to address the issues, and how to deal with them going forward. Knowing where they came from really doesn't help.

Put a date in your calendar for 8 weeks from now to visit the lawyer so you have a plan, but take a detour to a coach or MC first. I would actually recommend a coach AND an MC. You've really got nothing to lose and a huge messy divorce to save yourself from.

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

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#2217301 - 01/30/12 11:24 PM (NA) Re: (NA) Re: Not sure of next step [Re: Accuray]
Accuray Offline
Member

Registered: 07/20/11
Posts: 2090
BTW, what has your W been saying lately? Have you discussed the lack of sex recently? Its very odd that she would want you to take her to Italy if you haven't been discussing your relationship longer term, do you think she was testing you?

What do you think is going on with W?

Did you read "The Married Man Sex Life Primer"? I know you asked me what I thought, what did you think? I will say it inspired me to join Weight Watchers for Men online and to buy "Power 90" and start working out. If nothing else I got that out of it.

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

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#2217516 - 01/31/12 07:39 PM (NA) Re: (NA) Re: Not sure of next step [Re: Accuray]
Shaky Offline
Member

Registered: 10/13/11
Posts: 67
Loc: Hillsboro,Or.
Accuray-

Hey thanks for getting back to me. I was really down yesterday, all that I could think of was I just want some resolution. I know this takes time but I cannot wait another six months and be in this same sitch.

It seems lately she is talking a lot about the future and me being in it. Too me I feel I just give and give and get nothing back and just makes me frustrated.

I know she wants me to talk more, I really bottle up things that bother me and eventually blow a gasket.

I was lying in bed last night and finally had to get some things off my chest.

I asked how she was feeling lately about us. She said better. I then said I'm not doing good at all. I feel like I'm trying and getting nothing in return. My love tank is empty and need to know if you want to work this out. She said she does. I said action speaks louder than words.

She kept asking what I want her to do. She asked if I wanted to make love and I said no its not that I want to go slow and eventually we will know when its time. She is not ready I can see that. I can tell in her voice, she still has pain. I don't want to push the sex, I really want to start over. I've waited this long, I'm ok with going slow. I just need to have something to look forward too.

She said she is really worried that in 3 months it will go back to the old relationship and she doesn't want that. I said I know I agree. But it needs to be I give, you give, not me doing all the work. She said she will try. I really don't understand what is so complicated.

I asked if she wanted to seperate. There was a big NO and said she is willing to work on things together. I said I know we both need to change so we can more forward.

I asked about marriage counseling. I really don't see it helping much, she agreed. I know what I need to do. She said she is really happy how I'm doing with the kids. They love me and she can really tell. She said the kids are the most important thing in her life.

I said I know but I want to be included also. We decided to go to marriage counseling once a month. It was a good talk, maybe an hour and we cuddled and hugged for awhile.

I did read "The married Man Sex Life Primer", I thought it was pretty good. Laughed at a lot of the suggestions and was inspired to start eating better and running more. I've been really consistent with going to the gym to lift but not as good on doing cardio. Only way to run for me is getting up really early or I won't do it.

I'm about half way through "Sex starved marriage" and I'd really like the w to read it. Do you think this is a good idea?

About Italy, I don't think she was testing me, I truly think she wants to go and I will think more about it but it seems like a lot to ask with how I feel right now.

Will hold off on the lawyer, I probably won't need to go down that road. I would like to do some research on my rights. Will see if anything is available online. I'm in Oregon, I've heard its not near as bad as California for divorce.

Shaky
_________________________
M 42
W 41
S 10
D 7
M 15 Years
T 20 Years
Divorce busted

Top
#2217570 - 01/31/12 09:30 PM (NA) Re: (NA) Re: Not sure of next step [Re: Shaky]
Accuray Offline
Member

Registered: 07/20/11
Posts: 2090
That's awesome my friend, GOOD FOR YOU! Let's inventory progress:

-- She doesn't want to separate
-- She wants things to work out
-- She offered to ML
-- She complimented your progress
-- She said she's willing to "try" doing some work
-- She's talking longer term with you in the picture

Obviously not the goal line until you feel better, but definitely lined up in the right direction.

You told her you want to see some effort from her. Did you talk about what that looks like? You need to be specific or she's going to miss. What do you want her to do / say specifically?

One concept my DB coach introduced me to is the relationship wheel. You rate how you're feeling across a range of elements -- parenting, living situation, money, romance, etc. You each put it on a 10 point scale and then share and discuss your answers. You can Google for the categories, there are many versions of it. How you do it is key:

First, if something is a 7, you explain why it's better than a 6. This is important, it highlights the positive and gives you credit for what's going well. It's tempting to skip that step -- don't. Second, you ask what would need to happen for it to be an 8. Don't shoot for 9 or 10, just one number higher. Stay away from feelings -- "what would I/we/you be doing if this were an 8?" Then, see if you can set a goal to get there and check back in. If you do that for a couple months you'll be able to see and recognize progress, so she'll feel less fear of backsliding. If backsliding does start to occur, you have a mechanism to catch it right away.

Your W is afraid of relapsing or going back to where you were. This exercise can help to treat that fear by demonstrating progress and helping you to set reasonable and attainable goals.

WRT the MC, definitely do the selection process yourself -- interview them. They must say the keyword "solution based". I also asked them if they considered themselves marriage friendly and in what situations they would advocate divorce or separation. Go by yourself first and figure out if it's going to work for both of you before you bring W. If you're going to go once per month, try doing a "double session" (2 hours) to start, one hour is not enough.

I still recommend the DB coach for where you are right now, just try one call, there is a coupon on Facebook for a discount on the DB page. I worked with Cheryl.

Originally Posted By: Shaky
I'm about half way through "Sex starved marriage" and I'd really like the w to read it. Do you think this is a good idea?


Yes, I think it's an excellent idea. The book does a better job of explaining how you feel and why than you can do. It's not a good idea with a WAW, but if she says she wants to reconcile, then that is a great thing to do. You know my W doesn't like to be asked to do anything, and that's the one thing she did agree to do that made the most difference to our piecing is read that book. Your W may feel that "no sex" isn't that big a deal and that you can serve yourself and that's fine. The book does an excellent job explaining why that's not true and that it's a critical big deal.

The issue of the book is the title -- that's going to be a turn off as it can read like an accusation. I explained to my W that it was really a relationship book with a provocative title and explained MWD's definition of "sex starved": that there is a "desire gap" that bothers the HD partner. That's it. If you ML 3 times per week and you want it 5 and that bothers you, you have an SSM.

What I really liked about the book is the description of cycles that SSM causes. When you are turned down for sex you feel deep rejection which leads to resentment. Resentment leads to emotional withdrawal, and when you do that, W doesn't get her needs met for connection / communication / talking, etc. When she isn't getting those needs met, she's less inclined to ML and down the drain you go. It's a self-reinforcing negative cycle.

The book talks about the fact that you can get that to spin the other way. If you meet her needs even when you don't ML, she's more likely to be accommodating. If she provides ML when you want it even when she doesn't, you're more likely to provide for her needs, and you start spinning in a positive direction.

That concept applies to many areas of the relationship beyond sex, it's a "pay it forward" type mentality.

Shaky, I'm really happy for you, that's almost the best discussion you could have had with W based on how you're feeling. If you can afford it, consider working on planning that trip. It will give you something to work on together, look forward to, and anticipate. That can't hurt right now.

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

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