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#2227192 - 03/03/12 04:29 PM Re: Pulling Weeds and Planting Seeds [Re: bustorama]
2thepoint Offline
Member

Registered: 09/30/11
Posts: 1692
Quote:
As others have said (and you have seen yourself), the less YOU fix, fret, dote over, check in on, etc. your W, the:

1) less she may blame you for her negative feelings or find your presence annoying (I'm not saying she is, but it goes along with it)

2) has the chance to introspect, understand, work on and fix herself

3) she may seek you out


Yes, you are right. I'm trying to learn this ^^^ while also at the same time be available and provide her the emotional support she needs, (or at least I think she needs).

Quote:
Her feelings and emotions are her responsibility. She doesn't need fixing, she's not broken. She's capable of acting and feeling differently every moment of the day. Your feelings are your own and your responsibility is to be available and supportive to her IF SHE SEEKS YOU OUT.


I agree. I had a convo with her the other day about my tendency to go into control/fixit mode when communication isn't clear. So we agreed together to be more clear with each other which helps me. Dose it help her though? Maybe, maybe not.


Quote:
...you did not validate/respond to some of her feelings.

She told you she was sorry about being mean which you acknowledged by saying 'don't worry about it." You didn't really speak to the fact though that she said she 1) hasn't felt well, 2) has felt forgetful, or 3) was frustrated by that. You said that your goal was to help her get well, but in some ways that is FIXING behavior.


I guess that was a missed opportunity. You know, she had been bitchy that day before and I didn't think anything of it, didn't get offended, etc. I think it was because at the time she acknowledged that she was in a pissy mood, so I just kind of shrugged my shoulders and moved on. I hadn't considered validating in that context. Lesson learned!

Quote:
You didn't give any validation or support of her feelings in the present (about not feeling well, feeling forgetful, being frustrated). (e.g., yeah, I get you feel bad still and that the meds are jacking around with your memory on top of that. that must be so frustrating for you, Mrs. 2tp!) Try to really listen to and connect to her FEELINGS. It's clear that they matter very much to her.


Here I think, especially because I was struggling with how to provide emotional support while at the same time backing off, that I didn't realize I could do this in this specific context. Does that make sense?

Quote:
Second, if you want to convey that your goal is to help her get well, perhaps OFFER your help after validating her feelings explicitly by saying, let me know how I can help or let me know if there is anything you want me to do.


Good point.
_________________________
Me48 W50 S15 S11
M20 T23
Bomb-9/11; A-11/11; I move out 11/11

It's easy to find our bottom, it is our top that requires cultivation.

Every rough spot adds to our emotional constitution. -Barney Fife

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#2227244 - 03/03/12 08:51 PM Re: Pulling Weeds and Planting Seeds [Re: 2thepoint]
bustorama Offline
Member

Registered: 06/26/10
Posts: 519
Originally Posted By: bustorama
You didn't give any validation or support of her feelings in the present (about not feeling well, feeling forgetful, being frustrated). (e.g., yeah, I get you feel bad still and that the meds are jacking around with your memory on top of that. that must be so frustrating for you, Mrs. 2tp!) Try to really listen to and connect to her FEELINGS. It's clear that they matter very much to her.


Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
Here I think, especially because I was struggling with how to provide emotional support while at the same time backing off, that I didn't realize I could do this in this specific context. Does that make sense?


The best emotional support you can give is to listen to her. If you are worried about being too much of a fixer, it is ALWAYS good to mirror what she says. "It is so frustrating!" "I bet that is frustrating for you!" You aren't fixing anything. You are hearing her, being there with and for her. Simply being heard and validated is very powerful.
_________________________
Me-41
W-37
D10, D6, D3
T-Since 12/2001
Married-9/2004
She Moved Out-5/28/2010
Piecing begins-04/2011
Now-back together
My Thread
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2079304

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#2227251 - 03/03/12 09:35 PM Re: Pulling Weeds and Planting Seeds [Re: bustorama]
barely floating Offline
Member

Registered: 12/13/11
Posts: 750
2pac.. have you heard of imago? or non-violent communication? i think there are youtube stuff out there. essentially the basics.. empathizing and validating. H and i had both watched videos on the NVC.. it's really difficulty trying to learn to essentially.. speak another language!

i guess that's what we're all learning.. practice practice practice.. until it become second nature.
_________________________
Me:38.. H:33.
Two beautiful kids S:6 D:3
M:8.. together for 11.
Bomb dropped:10/17/11
Separated:11/07/11

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#2227511 - 03/04/12 09:35 PM Re: Pulling Weeds and Planting Seeds [Re: barely floating]
2thepoint Offline
Member

Registered: 09/30/11
Posts: 1692
Thanks for the post BF, I'll do some research on communicating, empathizing and validating and see if I can apply what I learn.

===================================

I think it is time for me to hit the road. Getting pretty tired of the emotional roller coaster and uncertainty of it all.

Stepped into W's bedroom this afternoon to ask a question and she is in tears, clothes everywhere, a total wreck! I ask her whats wrong? She says nothing. I eff'n hate it when someone is in tears and when you ask whats wrong they say nothing is wrong. Such BS!

I probe a little more and she says no one cares about her, (here we go...pity party on display). The kids don't care about her, her friends don't care about here, blah, blah, blah.

I try to validate as much as possible but also remind her that there are a lot of people that care about her, me included. She says I know you do, (almost as a throw away statement). I told her about all the calls, texts and emails I fielded from friends and family while she was in the hospital and since.

She says they are only checking in out of obligation, not because they care. I say I'm sorry you feel that way. I told her of the 2-3 friends/family who have offered more than once to come from across the country and stay for as long as is needed to help her and the family.

She just goes on about this and that. Then she says why do some people always get what they want? I don't have a flippin clue where this is coming from. It is so out in left field. I don't even know how to respond. I try to validate and reason, but I feel like it is to no avail so I eventually just shut my mouth and continue to listen. She goes on to say that she could/should go back to work tomorrow, (she is approved fro disability until at least the 15th). There is no point just sitting around. I say well that is up to you, you know when you are ready.

I then tell her that I am always here to talk to her and asked her to promise me that if she were ever in need of talking to someone, regardless of the time of day, that she would call me if she needed to. She agreed.

The conversation ends because she has to leave to pick up S13 from paintball.

=======================================

W gets home and we are having dinner. After the boys leave the room W tells me that her brother wants to come visit for Easter. I say, I thought you didn't want him to come. She says she really doesn't.

I tell her well it really is your decision. Do you want me to be "here" when he comes. Of course I want you "around", (that means not "here" in my interpretation which is fine). She goes on to say something along the lines of I don't want you to be uncomfortable, that when I spoke to him he was just being belligerent and it made her mad.

I then decided to read her the message he had sent me while she was in the hospital. The one where he threatened me after learning about our break-up, (the break-up she initiated because she is having an A and wants out of our M).

After reading her the message she says that must have made you feel pretty sh!tty. I say yes it did. Your bother and others have ideas about our breakup and as you know it is not something I wanted.

She says that they don't have any idea about what is going on because she hasn't told them. I tell her well they certainly have imaginations or can try to piece 2 and 2 together.

I then tell her that she should feel free to do what she wants. I don't want to get in the way of your family coming to visit. I'll be elsewhere so no one is uncomfortable.

She says you don't need to be elsewhere. I respond that it is for the best that I'm not around. And I leave the room.

===================

I know that the exchange above was not the most productive and I realize that DB principles were not effectively utilized. However, I think we are all entitled to our backslides from time to time, we are human after all. I just feel like W is wallowing in self pity and with the brother topic is trying to... I don't know, rope me in or... eff, I don't know what I think.

I'm just getting tired. In another week, we will be approaching the 1 month mark since W's health scare. She is exhausted but SO AM I!

I try to put on the brave face, try to be the caregiver providing love and support, with no expectations. But how can one not have some?

I just think it is time to pull WAY back. My W needs to figure out what she wants and it clearly isn't me.

I think it is time.
_________________________
Me48 W50 S15 S11
M20 T23
Bomb-9/11; A-11/11; I move out 11/11

It's easy to find our bottom, it is our top that requires cultivation.

Every rough spot adds to our emotional constitution. -Barney Fife

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#2227515 - 03/04/12 09:53 PM Re: Pulling Weeds and Planting Seeds [Re: 2thepoint]
BklynMom Offline
Member

Registered: 09/29/11
Posts: 1715
I know your W see a C but does she get any medication? Like most WAS I think many of their issues are very treatable. It doesnt have to be as hard as she is making it. She can be happy. She needs to love herself then see will recognize all her friends and family that love her as well.

You seem to be doing great and have a understanding of how long this process is gonna take. Enjoy the good times you get to share as a family.
_________________________
----
M 39
H 35
D5,D4
M 4
T 9
ILYBNILWY 5/18/11
Left 7/11/11
Divorced 12/1/13


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#2227519 - 03/04/12 10:12 PM Re: Pulling Weeds and Planting Seeds [Re: BklynMom]
workinghardguy Offline
Member

Registered: 09/15/11
Posts: 982
Loc: Wisconsin
Quote:
The best emotional support you can give is to listen to her. If you are worried about being too much of a fixer, it is ALWAYS good to mirror what she says. "It is so frustrating!" "I bet that is frustrating for you!" You aren't fixing anything. You are hearing her, being there with and for her. Simply being heard and validated is very powerful.


2TP... being a fixer myself, busto's advice is spot on. I've come up with this big red stop sign in my head. When I listen to my W and hear her moving into emotional territory I literally envision this stop sign. It keeps me from fixing, from solving. It stops me from engaging my brain to solve which then stops me from listening.

Instead I do a lot of parroting and validating. Let her talk it out, it's her problem. In the end you're the sounding board, not the mechanic.
_________________________
Married 6 together 8
Me:38 W:31 second marriage for both
SS12, SD10, S6
Bomb: 9/8/11 (day before our 5 yr ann)
W moved out: 2/18/12
D final: 11/12/12
Share S 50/50. Spend as much time as I can with SS & SD

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#2227536 - 03/04/12 10:39 PM Re: Pulling Weeds and Planting Seeds [Re: 2thepoint]
Valeska19 Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/11
Posts: 1234
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
Getting pretty tired of the emotional roller coaster and uncertainty of it all.


That makes sense to me. You've been through alot in the past month.

Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
Stepped into W's bedroom this afternoon to ask a question and she is in tears, clothes everywhere, a total wreck! I ask her whats wrong? She says nothing. I eff'n hate it when someone is in tears and when you ask whats wrong they say nothing is wrong. Such BS!


You can't make her tell you. When she said nothing... you should have said ok and walked and yet you do this..

Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
I probe a little more and she says no one cares about her, (here we go...pity party on display). The kids don't care about her, her friends don't care about here, blah, blah, blah.


Ok so let me get this straight.. you make it sound like you care and then you you make the comment of the "pity party"? The two contradict themselves.

Not only have you pressured her to talk, you then go and push your feelings and your agenda on her. See in bold.


Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
I try to validate as much as possible but also remind her that there are a lot of people that care about her, me included. She says I know you do, (almost as a throw away statement). I told her about all the calls, texts and emails I fielded from friends and family while she was in the hospital and since.

Just validate. Not buts... no reminders. Using the word "but" basically is saying.. "I understand why you feel this way but you are wrong".

And no matter how crazy or absurd YOU may think they are... ... they are HERS and she is entitled to her feelings.


She says they are only checking in out of obligation, not because they care. I say I'm sorry you feel that way. I told her of the 2-3 friends/family who have offered more than once to come from across the country and stay for as long as is needed to help her and the family.

Do you understand that by giving that information.. you aren't actually changing her fear??

Maybe next time be like.

"Wow w.. having that feeling of people doing things out of obligation must be difficult"....

.... and then if you are comfortable and have the communication.. you can get info on why she feels that way.

You are trying to fix something without actually trying to understand it.


She just goes on about this and that. Then she says why do some people always get what they want? I don't have a flippin clue where this is coming from. It is so out in left field. I don't even know how to respond. I try to validate and reason, but I feel like it is to no avail so I eventually just shut my mouth and continue to listen. She goes on to say that she could/should go back to work tomorrow, (she is approved fro disability until at least the 15th). There is no point just sitting around. I say well that is up to you, you know when you are ready.

I then tell her that I am always here to talk to her and asked her to promise me that if she were ever in need of talking to someone, regardless of the time of day, that she would call me if she needed to. She agreed.

Did you read my last post? Re-read it please. This is pursuit and you are trying to "fix" it.



Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
W gets home and we are having dinner. After the boys leave the room W tells me that her brother wants to come visit for Easter. I say, I thought you didn't want him to come. She says she really doesn't.

I tell her well it really is your decision. Do you want me to be "here" when he comes. Of course I want you "around", (that means not "here" in my interpretation which is fine). She goes on to say something along the lines of I don't want you to be uncomfortable, that when I spoke to him he was just being belligerent and it made her mad.

I then decided to read her the message he had sent me while she was in the hospital. The one where he threatened me after learning about our break-up, (the break-up she initiated because she is having an A and wants out of our M).

After reading her the message she says that must have made you feel pretty sh!tty. I say yes it did. Your bother and others have ideas about our breakup and as you know it is not something I wanted.

She says that they don't have any idea about what is going on because she hasn't told them. I tell her well they certainly have imaginations or can try to piece 2 and 2 together.

I then tell her that she should feel free to do what she wants. I don't want to get in the way of your family coming to visit. I'll be elsewhere so no one is uncomfortable.

She says you don't need to be elsewhere. I respond that it is for the best that I'm not around. And I leave the room.


Why did you feel the need to tell her about her brother?
What was your intentions in telling her?
Do you think it brought you closer to your w?

I know you have been through alot but 2.. you gotta STFU. Stop talking and trying so damn hard to convince your w of your "love" for her.

Stop all pursuit and just show her...

You don't show her in the hopes that she will notice or believe you. You do it because that is what love is...

and if she doesn't want you around.. so be it.

If she doesn't want to open up to you.. so be it.

I know that possibility hurts but you are making her health scare more about you than about her.


Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
I just think it is time to pull WAY back. My W needs to figure out what she wants and it clearly isn't me.

I think it is time.


I couldn't agree more. I don't mean to smash you with 2x4s.

I don't know what I would do if I was in your shoes and I think you are handling it.. to the best of your ability.

But you said so yourself that you are tired and aren't DBing your best..

.... so pull away until you can put your DB game face back on.

(((( ))))
_________________________
M(f): 31
XW: 33
M: 5
D'ed: 8/12

Show empathy when there's pain. Show grace when warranted. Kindness in the midst of anger. Faith in the face of fear.

Love at all costs because you are loved well.

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#2227539 - 03/04/12 10:56 PM Re: Pulling Weeds and Planting Seeds [Re: Valeska19]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1019
Sorry 2, these kinds of conversations are just emotionally draining and we're all running on rather low tanks as it is.

I agree that you need to pull away while her family is around. You have no obligations to be there and take the brunt of misconceptions about your marriage sitch.

Get some rest. Sometimes a good nights sleep can help bring new perspective. Praying for you my friend.
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

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#2227541 - 03/04/12 10:58 PM Re: Pulling Weeds and Planting Seeds [Re: Valeska19]
adinva Offline
Member

Registered: 09/06/11
Posts: 2739
Loc: VA
Hi 2TP - sorry, this sounds very hard on you. You really care so much and that shows.

Valeska said exactly what I was going to say, but more clearly. I was going to say, what exactly are you calling validating? You mentioned validating and reasoning with her, as if they're peas and carrots. They're mutually exclusive. Val's examples were good validations.

When a woman is crying and you ask what's wrong and they say "nothing" that doesn't mean literally nothing is wrong, it means nothing that I want to talk to you about. You could still say "I'm sorry that you're hurting" or "I'm here if you want to talk later." It definitely doesn't mean "nothing but keep asking me until I'm mad instead of sad."

I actually think it was fine that you shared the brother's letter. Based on the threat in it, I'd think about making myself scarce while he's there even if W said she wants you there. He obviously doesn't know the real situation and you don't need to create more drama by letting him get in the middle of it.

I know you're tired. Hang in there. She seems so sad and confused. I shouldn't mind read but I think when she says no one cares about her she might really be feeling like she's not worthy of being cared about. You can't fix that. Distance sounds like exactly what's needed.
_________________________
Adinva 47 H48
T22 M19 S16 S14
6/15/11 IDLY
6/11-12/12 in-home sep
12/16/12 H moved out
Nothing signed yet
____
Be the change you want to see in the world (Gandhi)

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#2227549 - 03/04/12 11:22 PM Re: Pulling Weeds and Planting Seeds [Re: Valeska19]
2thepoint Offline
Member

Registered: 09/30/11
Posts: 1692
Originally Posted By: Valeska19
Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
Getting pretty tired of the emotional roller coaster and uncertainty of it all.


That makes sense to me. You've been through alot in the past month.

Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
Stepped into W's bedroom this afternoon to ask a question and she is in tears, clothes everywhere, a total wreck! I ask her whats wrong? She says nothing. I eff'n hate it when someone is in tears and when you ask whats wrong they say nothing is wrong. Such BS!


You can't make her tell you. When she said nothing... you should have said ok and walked and yet you do this..

Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
I probe a little more and she says no one cares about her, (here we go...pity party on display). The kids don't care about her, her friends don't care about here, blah, blah, blah.


Ok so let me get this straight.. you make it sound like you care and then you you make the comment of the "pity party"? The two contradict themselves.

In that conversation I did care. Later when she came to em about her brothers potential visit, her demeanor was different and so in retrospect, it felt like a "pity party".

Not only have you pressured her to talk, you then go and push your feelings and your agenda on her. See in bold.

It wasn't intentional. sometimes I just don't know what to say, so I fill the void. I know...STFU!

Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
I try to validate as much as possible but also remind her that there are a lot of people that care about her, me included. She says I know you do, (almost as a throw away statement). I told her about all the calls, texts and emails I fielded from friends and family while she was in the hospital and since.

Just validate. Not buts... no reminders. Using the word "but" basically is saying.. "I understand why you feel this way but you are wrong".

And no matter how crazy or absurd YOU may think they are... ... they are HERS and she is entitled to her feelings.


You are right and I know this. Validation is so hard, not because I am not empathetic but because choosing the right thing to say, especially if what you are hearing sounds like greek is so damn difficult. Kind of like someone says the sky is green. And I have to say "it must be heard to feel that way, the sky being green and all..." It is just so unnatural.

She says they are only checking in out of obligation, not because they care. I say I'm sorry you feel that way. I told her of the 2-3 friends/family who have offered more than once to come from across the country and stay for as long as is needed to help her and the family.

Do you understand that by giving that information.. you aren't actually changing her fear??

Maybe next time be like.

"Wow w.. having that feeling of people doing things out of obligation must be difficult"....

.... and then if you are comfortable and have the communication.. you can get info on why she feels that way.

You are trying to fix something without actually trying to understand it.


I really struggle with this. She is making an irrational statement. Yes, they are her beliefs, but they are completely unfounded... and she knows this. She insisted I turn away every last person who called to check in on her. I just have a difficult time talking in BS. It is like I am prepared to get slapped upside the head if I were to BS my way through that kind of a conversation. It is almost like breathing in water and expecting to have it fill your lungs with oxygen. Just ain't gonna work! Does that make sense?

She just goes on about this and that. Then she says why do some people always get what they want? I don't have a flippin clue where this is coming from. It is so out in left field. I don't even know how to respond. I try to validate and reason, but I feel like it is to no avail so I eventually just shut my mouth and continue to listen. She goes on to say that she could/should go back to work tomorrow, (she is approved fro disability until at least the 15th). There is no point just sitting around. I say well that is up to you, you know when you are ready.

I then tell her that I am always here to talk to her and asked her to promise me that if she were ever in need of talking to someone, regardless of the time of day, that she would call me if she needed to. She agreed.

Did you read my last post? Re-read it please. This is pursuit and you are trying to "fix" it.



I see your point. I was just trying to reassure her that if she felt like no one cared about her, at least she'd know that I did. Maybe she doesn't need reminding but in the context of that conversation, I felt like she needed that reassurance.

Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
W gets home and we are having dinner. After the boys leave the room W tells me that her brother wants to come visit for Easter. I say, I thought you didn't want him to come. She says she really doesn't.

I tell her well it really is your decision. Do you want me to be "here" when he comes. Of course I want you "around", (that means not "here" in my interpretation which is fine). She goes on to say something along the lines of I don't want you to be uncomfortable, that when I spoke to him he was just being belligerent and it made her mad.

I then decided to read her the message he had sent me while she was in the hospital. The one where he threatened me after learning about our break-up, (the break-up she initiated because she is having an A and wants out of our M).

After reading her the message she says that must have made you feel pretty sh!tty. I say yes it did. Your bother and others have ideas about our breakup and as you know it is not something I wanted.

She says that they don't have any idea about what is going on because she hasn't told them. I tell her well they certainly have imaginations or can try to piece 2 and 2 together.

I then tell her that she should feel free to do what she wants. I don't want to get in the way of your family coming to visit. I'll be elsewhere so no one is uncomfortable.

She says you don't need to be elsewhere. I respond that it is for the best that I'm not around. And I leave the room.


Why did you feel the need to tell her about her brother?
What was your intentions in telling her?
Do you think it brought you closer to your w?

I don't know if it brought us any closer. Probably not. She knew he had said something to me and that it was not pleasant. she had even apologized for it a couple of times. I guess I felt like if she was hesitant about him coming and was concerned about my hesitation being around, then she needed to understand exactly why.

I know you have been through alot but 2.. you gotta STFU. Stop talking and trying so damn hard to convince your w of your "love" for her.

Stop all pursuit and just show her...

You don't show her in the hopes that she will notice or believe you. You do it because that is what love is...

and if she doesn't want you around.. so be it.

If she doesn't want to open up to you.. so be it.

I know that possibility hurts but you are making her health scare more about you than about her.

That really is not my intention. But point taken.


Originally Posted By: 2thepoint
I just think it is time to pull WAY back. My W needs to figure out what she wants and it clearly isn't me.

I think it is time.


I couldn't agree more. I don't mean to smash you with 2x4s.

I don't know what I would do if I was in your shoes and I think you are handling it.. to the best of your ability.

But you said so yourself that you are tired and aren't DBing your best..

.... so pull away until you can put your DB game face back on.

(((( ))))
_________________________
Me48 W50 S15 S11
M20 T23
Bomb-9/11; A-11/11; I move out 11/11

It's easy to find our bottom, it is our top that requires cultivation.

Every rough spot adds to our emotional constitution. -Barney Fife

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