Get help from a Divorce Busting® Telephone Coach TODAY! We specialize in helping you get your marriage back on track, even when your spouse has one foot out the door. Don't be discouraged. We can help.
303-444-7004
or 800-664-2435
Page 10 of 10 < 1 2 ... 8 9 10
Topic Options
#2234545 - 03/31/12 05:41 AM Re: Considering Quixote [Re: danielf]
25yearsmlc Offline
Member

Registered: 04/03/06
Posts: 9927
Loc: west coast
something that helped me as a guide post for the whole journey

was a role model I created for myself to become, based on two women I know, with some of "ME" added in for realism.

I just imagined my best self and what she was like on regular days. I imagined how SHE would react to not so good situations...(Of course SHE would not be in as many of these "situations" but IF)

and I saw some Mother Teresa stuff, but then I toned it down to be more realistic for me. So I saw the nurturing side of myself that exists, in full bloom, the encouraging partner I once was, the warm lover, the fun loving friend, the buddy who laughs hard & often...

and I really really tried to live up to that image. I fell short!! OFTEN!!

But I had my moments early on too. And they did help, or at least kept things from escalating that ordinarily would have.

And I'm a better woman now than I was before.
That's important.

And I'm a better partner.

Today? No, NOT All of our problems are solved and we get new ones b/c life throws curveballs.

About 3 months after we reconciled & were barely in "Piecing", my mil was diagnosed with terminal cancer and I did a lot of caring for her. I quit my job to help out.

That was NOT expected and it was utterly draining and terrifying and a lot of other things...but I "showed up" for her and my h and btw, she had not been close or kind to me or the kids. But I know I did right by her.

I like to THINK the kids admired that. At least I have hopes that if I'm in those shoes, they'll recall it!

Anyhow, the point is, we began to backslide at the time. We had NOT gotten tools for this type of crisis as we were barely resolving what had separated us.

Then we went to Retrovaille and I'd urge you to give that a try. I think I already mentioned it but if not, it's a weekend retreat FOR marriages in trouble.

Works small/not so small miracles. Helped EVERY couple there. 3 years later, 80% are still married and considering why they were there in the first place (ie crisis), that is saying a lot.

Check yourself for self serving rationalizations.( We all do them). But they hurt us & the people we love, often. So beware.

& Keep posting!
_________________________
m:51 H:55
M: 30 yrs
S25,D23,D15
H goes ALASKAN, solo,2005
I file Sep 2/06
Piecing 7/07
Retrovaille Weekend 8/08
M Restored 8/08

Be Happy OR be "Right"

FORGIVENESS: Your way out of hell

Top
#2234635 - 03/31/12 07:25 PM Re: Considering Quixote [Re: 25yearsmlc]
danielf Offline
Member

Registered: 03/05/12
Posts: 128
25, thank you so much for keeping with me and not giving up on me, even when I don't make much sense!

Great advice on envisioning who I would like to be and gauging decisions against that "person." I will start writing/thinking about who I want to be.

You had mentioned Retrovaille, and they have a couple weekends that would work as far as logistics, but I just feel so far from being able to ask something like that of W. Seems like a piecing-stage thing. Piecing stage, wonder if I'll ever see that?

W is now bringing the kids back three days late so that she can feed a dog for her sister. And now she doesn't want to get an apartment here because it would cost too much. Keeping me on my toes, at least. crazy
_________________________
Me:33, W:32
D:11, S:10, S8
M:12

Top
#2234788 - 04/01/12 10:19 PM Re: Considering Quixote [Re: danielf]
danielf Offline
Member

Registered: 03/05/12
Posts: 128
Please chime in if you have any opinion:
W wants to stay on vacation an extra week, despite the kids' school starting back tomorrow.
Which of these options is better for the kids?
Extra week of vacation? W would bring them back next Monday. I am fairly confident that she would, as the rental car is due back then (W is very worried about $), and it follows a race she was planning to run.
My parents are able to fly them up here tomorrow night, so they would go to school on Tuesday. Then Daddy and they get to figure out what being a single-parent family feels like.
Neither option, I think, is wildly crazy.
_________________________
Me:33, W:32
D:11, S:10, S8
M:12

Top
#2234794 - 04/01/12 11:06 PM Re: Considering Quixote [Re: danielf]
adinva Offline
Member

Registered: 09/06/11
Posts: 2593
Loc: VA
Hi danielf - what in your opinion is best for the kids?
_________________________
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)

Top
#2234823 - 04/02/12 02:12 AM Re: Considering Quixote [Re: danielf]
25yearsmlc Offline
Member

Registered: 04/03/06
Posts: 9927
Loc: west coast
Originally Posted By: danielf
25, thank you so much for keeping with me and not giving up on me, even when I don't make much sense!

Great advice on envisioning who I would like to be and gauging decisions against that "person." I will start writing/thinking about who I want to be.

You had mentioned Retrovaille, and they have a couple weekends that would work as far as logistics, but I just feel so far from being able to ask something like that of W. Seems like a piecing-stage thing. Piecing stage, wonder if I'll ever see that?


Two comments about this^^^... 1) you may be able to persuade your w to go for the kid's sake AND to learn to communicate better; but get her there.

2) Retrovaille is NOT for piecing stages only. (Going anytime would be good, frankly) but

we saw several couples at Retrovaille who were planning to split up, or were seriously thinking about it. It's FOR couples in crisis.

You may be confusing it with "marriage encounters," which are for marriages not in crisis but looking for a "tune up".

Retrovaille is for couples who think they want to throw in the towel OR who want an engine overhaul but lack the tools...and feel hopeless.

Do not delay going if you can get there. It's not offered more than twice a year here, btw. So, take advantage if you can.

But make no mistake, the ONE weekend is a jump start -a good one- but there's a follow up program and support group to keep the changes going,

and to learn new ways of handling problems. DO THE FOLLOW UP...I cannot stress that enough.

Some couples find the old spark at the weekend retreat, and figure they're fine now... but then they backslide and give up. So stay with what works.

That's why the program has the success rate it has. It's not a one weekend fix all, but it sure does get things going.

No matter how you get her there, it's impossible for her Not to get something out of it.

A lot of the couples had one spouse intent on divorcing, but willing to go to Retrovaille, to check it off their list...they may have hoped it could help smooth things out for the divorce by "getting along" at the weekend...

but many of those very spouses were surprised to feel differently on Sunday night. They found that Retrovaille SLOWED their divorce plan down, got them to re-evaluate, and frequently stopped them in their tracks.

Do not put it off

or wait for things to improve OR deteriorate to do Retrovaille. THIS is a step to get you to piecing...


I could be wrong but Something tells me you are a bit too passive in this regard. You don't put in the work or take the iniative to improve things and don't want to confront if it's difficult or emotionally charged (the porn may be symptomatic of that too??)...

rather than solving the problem when she's upset, you'd "wait for her to cool down" instead of going after her to apologize, or to make your case.

While that APPEARS to be the easiery way out of conflict - it resolves nothing and almost always worsens things in the long run..seething resentments you may not be aware of, or repeated woundings at being rejected, which I suspect the porn felt like, to her.

Regardless of that issue, in the long run, "conflict avoidance" is NOT easier on anyone. I wish more people realized this, sooner. It means that you don't know how to solve tough problems together. That's such a huge life skill all couples need, to be a team.

You don't have to agree, but do you get what I am saying?




W is now bringing the kids back three days late so that she can feed a dog for her sister. And now she doesn't want to get an apartment here because it would cost too much. Keeping me on my toes, at least. crazy


I will post more later--
_________________________
m:51 H:55
M: 30 yrs
S25,D23,D15
H goes ALASKAN, solo,2005
I file Sep 2/06
Piecing 7/07
Retrovaille Weekend 8/08
M Restored 8/08

Be Happy OR be "Right"

FORGIVENESS: Your way out of hell

Top
#2234830 - 04/02/12 04:57 AM Re: Considering Quixote [Re: danielf]
25yearsmlc Offline
Member

Registered: 04/03/06
Posts: 9927
Loc: west coast
Daniel,

This is a bit long b/c I think there are some opportunities here for learning more than what meets the eye. So here we go...


Originally Posted By: danielf
Please chime in if you have any opinion:


I'm a little confused here. There is a situation and an undercurrent here.

Re: the situation...so, let me see if I have this right. Your w had the kids out of town for spring break but stayed a bit longer to help her sister/dog...now she'd like to extend it a week more, but it's during the school year...

Is this b/c your wife does not want to come home yet?
Is that what's really bothering you?


B/c you mention the rental car AND your parents being available to come get the kids, and fly them home, so that, what? Your w can remain there longer? Travel more? Bring them home later by car, or what? Are those really the ONLY reasons?

Okay, I'll go with the assumption that the kids could get home via plane, and therefore the rental car is irrelevant.. And that leaves the issue of missing a week of school. Right so far?

VACATION---Are they with older relatives who have limited time left on earth? Are they doing fun, exotic things, even learning stuff, WITH family they are getting to know better and bond with?

In other words, What's the big attraction, beyond the normal bonding family stuff?
And what's the fear you have about it?


Are you concerned w is house hunting or job hunting there? Other than missing school (which I'm not minimizing), is there something specifically that you fear about them being there?


W wants to stay on vacation an extra week, despite the kids' school starting back tomorrow.
Which of these options is better for the kids?
Extra week of vacation?



Truly it Depends on the pros of the vacation and the cons of missing school.

There ARE times it is so worth it to miss school!!

We took our youngest d, then 12, to Europe in order to see her older sister perform in the theater in Europe. We also brought my terminally ill MIL.
Went to Venice,Italy, saw the show in Germany and stayed in Budapest too...We all learned a ton of history and art and geography...AND spent real time with dying MIl, my kids sick grandma.

-AND-- D12 missed 2 full weeks of school. It was So worth it (not just emotionally for the family memories d14 (now she's 14) will always have that otherwise she would NOT) and when I compare that to her "losing" b compared 10 days of mindless or tedious homework, a few interesting assignments she can learn over a weekend, or listening to a kid read out loud about something, or watching some videos and going to gym class.

CERTAINLY sometimes the travel & missing school IS what's best for the children... the answer DEPENDS on several factors...


The principal told me, off the record, that he'd do the same if he were us.

And at your kid's age, it's hardly academically fatal to miss a few more days.
Easter is coming up, so they may even have Friday or Monday off. So how many days are they really missing? And before a holiday or right after a break, there will be other kids absent, and the material will be slow getting off, imo.

When we lived in Alaska, we took vacations From there in the winter, like in late January. For a good 2 weeks.

I recall ZERO questions being asked about where we were going or where we were. But that's Alaska in the winter...we needed sunshine and everyone knew it.

I don't know your kids' schools or their requirements or flexibility levels, so we have to advise in a bit of a vacuum.

Daniel, is worth it in terms of the vacation/family time itself?

well, we know they are all young enough that they're not missing difficult concepts that will haunt them until college...but

Like I said, I don't have enough info to assess this.

Check yourself..
for an undercurrent I feel periodically popping up in your views.

Is it possible you're seeing her request as a "win/lose" thing, between your w and you? If so, WHY? And do you expect gratitude from her? Think about those expectations...

To me It feels as if you think she's asking YOU for a favor, as if it's costing you something, rather than you both making a decision about a -vacation vs school-.

Is there a way to be a "team" of 2 parents deciding things together here? 180?


Try not to look at it as a win/lose thing, b/c that is scorecard keeping all over again. Most Everything I say to you COULD be turned around and said about her but that's sooo useless. It's like 9 y/o's saying "I know you are but what am I?"

You are here and we are working on you, not her. Don't forget that.

Scorecardss will stink for your kids, forever...hey--instead of the same old,

show her a NEW way of problem solving that does not make anyone "right" or "wrong"...make sense? That would be a nice little demonstration of a 180, correct?



Daniel-IMO---for most women--
it is the PROCESS of decision making/problem solving, that is more important than the actual decision made. This is important to fully realize.

The PROCESS of it is a bonding experience, it shows real respect & love and commitment to finding solutions AND it usually results in better decisions. Plus you have "buy in" from both people so if the decision needs to be reversed or modified, no blame needs to be assigned. You can both, again, process the new situation and make a new decision...
our judicial system is based on procedures that are more likely to free an innocent man than if we had none and simply were "winging" it...but in real life in our marriages, when we don't have a PROCESS for problem solving, we end up making bad choices, getting mad about them when they don't work out OR getting mad even though they did work out---b/c we were not included.

My h bought a snowmobile in Alaska. We had discussed it in theory. Then He saw a good deal and went and got it. I ASSUME the process was a few days but I don't know b/c he didn't involve me and I cannot recall why, or if there was a reason (other than I had a newborn).

But I would have loved to have been there and helped get it home, and feel involved.
I was shut out. It bugged me a lot and even though the choice itself was a good one (it was a good deal) being shut out of it, and presented with a fait accompli, took much of the joy out of it for me. Like he took that away.

It's a small example but I hope it makes my point. Do you get what I mean? So focus on HOW you approach problems TOGETHER and come up with a process for it. Maybe see if the DB coach can advise or suggest reading for it...

I believe most women want to feel listened to, and included for decisions, treated with respect, not manipulation, no "decisions by intimidation" or a war

of attrition in which one person just wears the other out until they surrender/give in. [b] When you see that it's usually the same person surrendering, watch out.[/b]

That's such a common & destructive pattern that ends A LOT of marriages.
I'm not saying it's you, but that it's common.

SIDENOTE--The "surrenderer" usually ends up being the WAS, and the "winner" is usually stunned as an LBSer. The LBSer will say "but he never told me he was unhappy" and that may be true. But to the surrenderer/WAS, What good would it have done?

Most WASs have tried to warn their LBSers and many truthful LBSers realize that indeed, they were warned. But til the day of the bomb dropping, there didn't seem to be the need for real change...in their minds.

Something big enough had not happened yet for them to care enough to really CHANGE. When the bomb drops, they feel like they got hit with a ton of bricks.

But when they dust themselves off and begin to really LOOK in the mirror, often they see the warning signs they chose to ignore at the time...to avoid conflict or digging deep (Oh, the irony).

To the WAS who was constantly surrendering or giving in, shrugging & saying "it's not important"...(and sighing)

it may appear to others that it makes for a peaceful marriage. In reality, it builds up a lot of anger.

I've known 2 women who said they "never fought with their h's"....TWO, in all my years...one was my younger sister and the other a childhood friend.


Both of those women had h's who left them - and the women were SHOCKED & devastated by being abandoned.---- their h's were seething surrenderers, and maybe your w is too.

We, the witnesses to those marriages, were sad but not shocked...but I digress...


Daniel, when you write or speak, please be clear & direct-esp with your wife. Don't make her guess. Clearly stating what you feel or think, Obviously helps communication, but it's also a sign or responsibility on your end. AND that btings me to that undercurrent I was mentioning earlier.


Being clear when you communicate is responsible b/c it means you own what you say. You can handle the effect of stating an opinion, such as others not agreeing. "Hinting" is generally counter productive. It belongs on a sitcom.

It's a way of trying to squirm out of something later, with phrases like "No, I did not actually SAY that"--
so you can try to avoid being accountable for implying it a hundred times...


Sometimes you dance around things when you know your real answer, a truth about you, won't "sound so good"...if you "rehearse" it and don't like how it sounds but it's truly how you feel and you are embarrassed by that,

one of your options OUGHT to be reassessing that opinion. Maybe you're wrong and your conscience is guiding you or maybe you need to empathize more and realize that in the grand scheme of things, getting your way on a small issue, is not helping the grander cause.

If you really feel that you want something, but objectively let's say it's selfish as hell for you to expect it...then work on being mature enough to change that want of yours.

Don't pretend you don't have it, or hint around about it and then act offended when someone says "gee Daniel, that's a selfish request"...

For instance-when we were talking about porn in your marriage and how it did NOT help things...
Remember that question I asked?

I asked you how you'd feel IF

your w said sex with you was "sorta hard" on her b/c she'd have "to focus on you instead" of just herself, AND

that she often preferred "porn/self service" to making love with you. Do you recall that question?

You changed your answer and explanation first, b/c you knew it sounded pretty lousy.

And then you avoided answering the "how would you feel IF" questions...so that's where I was going with this tangent. Not to slap you about the porn, but to identify the rehearsed nature of your wording, and how it hinders your r's.
You need to know how what you say sounds--so you can own it OR change it for real.

Meaning, if something you feel turns out to be damn selfish or mean spirited, it does not make you a demon. But you have to stop rationalizing it OR pretending it's not what you said or wanted...

"owning it" means you can change it for real.
You can deny yourself things that are harmful even if you want them b/c that's what mature adults do.
And it's worth it!

So Daniel, own your comments and don't expect mind readers in life.
I could not accurately advise here b/c it SEEMS as if you are upset and you won't say so or why... is it really that the kids are missing 4 or 5 days of school that bothers you? Really?

It's crucial to stand back objectively.

If you were your kids, which would bother you the most:
would you be bugged about maybe getting behind in school and missing your friends for a week,

MORE THAN-

you'd mind missing out on being with cousins/grand parents, sleeping in and having a fun vacation?

you can also ask your kids...at least the oldest.


W would bring them back next Monday. I am fairly confident that she would, as the rental car is due back then (W is very worried about $), and it follows a race she was planning to run.

does the phrase "fairly confident" mean you are merely concerned about her timing the return, OR that you are worried she might NOT return?



My parents are able to fly them up here tomorrow night, so they would go to school on Tuesday. Then Daddy and they get to figure out what being a single-parent family feels like.
Neither option, I think, is wildly crazy.


I don't know what you mean here. Daddy is you. So are you wondering what a single parent's life is like? You'd take them to school and be with them at night, which is what your wife does now, correct?

And why do you say "neither option is wildly crazy"?

What's crazy about them returning now?

Are you trying to say you want them ALL to come home now - and anything other than that, is going to hurt you? That's okay to express, but be clear. I feel like I'm decoding.

Assume I'm a dullard. Assume I need you to tell me directly what is bothering you about which part of this. Otherwise this is too much guesswork and mind reading.

If i were also emotionally invested (as a wife & husband are) it would be too complicated & frustrating to deal with innuendo and guesswork.

Use declarative sentences to speak your mind, with as much love as you can...and when I say "speak your mind," of course I mean in a DB way.

You were smart to Post here and explore your options first... and remember to check yourself BEFORE you act or speak.."is this action/wording going to help my cause or push me further from it?"


Keep on posting and hang in there. We await more info...
_________________________
m:51 H:55
M: 30 yrs
S25,D23,D15
H goes ALASKAN, solo,2005
I file Sep 2/06
Piecing 7/07
Retrovaille Weekend 8/08
M Restored 8/08

Be Happy OR be "Right"

FORGIVENESS: Your way out of hell

Top
#2235025 - 04/03/12 12:15 AM Re: Considering Quixote [Re: 25yearsmlc]
danielf Offline
Member

Registered: 03/05/12
Posts: 128
I called W to work out together what would be best for the kids. I identified some ways that I might try to selfishly steer the decision and tried (successfully) not to do so. Talking about it didn't really bring a clear decision out, and things got a little strained. But then I said it might be a good time to start taking turns, and I am now going to get them from the airport in an hour. I feel like the decision-making process went well and we ended up agreeing that this is best.
Talked to my boss this morning and she knows that I will be on and off Dad duty, and I'll make up the time/effort/commitment when W has the kids for when I can't give 100% at work. She understands and is supportive.

25, I can't tell you how much I appreciate your gift of attention, experience, and care. I don't have time right now for an adequate response to your posts, but I want to say that your personalized messages to me are beginning to penetrate and maybe take root. I am humbled by your love for me, essentially a stranger. I promise that I will take your words to my heart. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
_________________________
Me:33, W:32
D:11, S:10, S8
M:12

Top
#2237078 - 04/11/12 07:30 AM Re: Considering Quixote [Re: 25yearsmlc]
danielf Offline
Member

Registered: 03/05/12
Posts: 128
Sorry for the hiatus. The kids came back up here last week, and W came back yesterday. Single-parenting is hard, but that's only an excuse. I had times I could have written back. I have time for whatever I set as a priority.

Originally Posted By: 25yearsmlc

Do not put it off

or wait for things to improve OR deteriorate to do Retrovaille. THIS is a step to get you to piecing...

I could be wrong but Something tells me you are a bit too passive in this regard. You don't put in the work or take the iniative to improve things and don't want to confront if it's difficult or emotionally charged (the porn may be symptomatic of that too??)...

...
Regardless of that issue, in the long run, "conflict avoidance" is NOT easier on anyone. I wish more people realized this, sooner. It means that you don't know how to solve tough problems together. That's such a huge life skill all couples need, to be a team.

You don't have to agree, but do you get what I am saying?


I do. I have asked her a little about the Marriage 911 Workshop by Joe Beam, and her response to "trying everything" was "there will always be another thing to try." I will ask her in the next week about Retrovaille, saying let's try something.

I am finally ready to work on myself. "Conflict avoidance" has always been my MO, but it is hard for me to even see this as more than a pattern. I can't think back to particular interactions where I backed down to avoid conflict. But I will keep trying to see the past with clarity, while focussing on the present and analyzing a day as it ends. How did I interact with her? What was I trying to do (honesty is tough)? What were the results? I don't need to obsess or regret, but I do need to learn.

I am finally at a point in my life where I want to change more than my behavior and where I see that more than my behavior needs to change. I am acknowledging that my actions, behaviors, and habits are based on and come from my attitudes, beliefs, and deep things that I have never paid attention to. Laziness, based on fear, has led me to look for the quick-fix.

So, I will try to get her to go to Retrovaille. I fear that I might have to twist her arm, but I need to be willing to do that.
_________________________
Me:33, W:32
D:11, S:10, S8
M:12

Top
Page 10 of 10 < 1 2 ... 8 9 10


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