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Coach #1786082 06/19/09 05:47 PM
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Originally Posted By: Coach
When I advocate being friends while in the DB mode it is of the "tough love" approach. It's business like, it's centered on my best interests, it's brutally honest and it's loving at the core. The reason it works is because like what Gucci preaches is that I am "moving on," I am a better me - secure and confident (did the work on myself), I won't repeat/tolerate unhealthy relationship patterns, I am leading myself out of this mess and if you want to be married to me great hop on board.
One of the hardest things I had to do was hire a lawyer, scared me to death. My biggest screw ups around my wife involved legal stuff. But I know that playing legal hard ball back showed that I was not going to roll over. I know it scared my wife as well because it was part of the "moving on" process. Your friend sues you, how are you going to act? I understand the confusion and fine line this represents. I am getting a knot in my stomach just thinking about this. The nice guy, friend in me had a hard time taking this step.
My wife moving out/filing D papers was not a "friendly" gesture but it showed me she was moving on. It was actually a loving gesture for herself and in the long run for me. She broke the unhealthy patterns. Moving on means I care enough about myself to take care of myself. We project that out as being selfish, in a fog, and having a wall up. Moving on is saying to yourself that you matter. You are moving on to a healthier, wiser, stronger and richer place for yourself. People notice movement, the waiting place is a slow death and not attractive. Healthy, vibrant movement is a deal-maker. Move is a verb so go get busy.

Cheers


Damn Straight!

One of the best things I ever said to her was during that last week in reference to feeling squashed and a SSM. "I'm looking inside and I'm doing this work because whether it's with you or someone else, I won't allow those things to happen in a relationship again."


"My actions are my only true belongings. I cannot escape the consequences of my actions. My actions are the ground upon which I stand." Thich Nhat Hanh
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Smiley Man..

Because of a very rebellious teenager, I started reading on how to talk with teens. I learned to use simple declarative statements, talk less than they did (if they said 12 worlds, I'd say 8; if they said 5, I'd say 3) and listen. And to allow awkward silence. If my mouth stayed shut, my teenager would eventually start talking to fill in the silence. After all, what's brewing beneath the surface takes a while to percolate. It came in handy when my spouse abruptly left.

This same teenager would angrily snarl that "I (Gypsy) always knew just the right thing to say, that I always had all the answers." Huh? I thought that was a GOOD thing!

"Codependent No More" is one of the best books I've ever read. I never realized I was a poster child for codependence. Everything I'd done had been to help others, part of taking care of the ones I loved. Imagine my shock when I realized that what I thought was helpful was controlling and in the end hurtful.

It's a learning process not to 'help', double check, do it all. People.. spouses, children, friends.. learn by doing not by being told. And I truly believed I was someone who let my kids learn.. but whoops.. I did too much. They could learn but I had trouble letting them fail. Phrases like "I need your help for..." works wonders.

Your wife will struggle with her relationship with your children. Lots of things will be different.

You (and she) can learn a lot by just letting her talk. By learning to be honest, to know what is and isn't appropriate.

*hugs*

Ooops.. hope this isn't me 'fixing'!

orangedog #1786093 06/19/09 06:02 PM
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How far to let them fall? Hmm... can't say but they NEED to do the work too.

Smiley's right. Kids sitting in front of the TV with a 12 pack of cola isn't good. But the W needs to own this decision too. And that means owning all of it - kids, extended family, house, bills, etc. If the W needs to learn how to interact with the kids (as mine is now) then she needs to learn it.

Once again I can't visit Crazyville (her house and life) anymore. I've got my life, my little island of sanity (term used loosely), and my work to do. I do great things with my kids. I control that.

Right now I'm quiet. I've tried hard and I need a break. She knows the door is open if she wants to talk.


Last edited by orangedog; 06/19/09 06:03 PM.

"My actions are my only true belongings. I cannot escape the consequences of my actions. My actions are the ground upon which I stand." Thich Nhat Hanh
orangedog #1786137 06/19/09 06:53 PM
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Originally Posted By: orangedog
How far to let them fall?


Fall?

She's not falling. She's on a journey.


Me45 H46
T25 M22
S21 & 19
D13
Separated and filed 8/08
Moved home 11/08



Happily ever after is one day at a time.
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Quote:
When WAS comes to you and says ILYBNILWY, s/he's taking Absolute Power over the sitch. And one of the reasons (IMHO) that LBS freaks and does all that nasty icky stuff we do, is the feeling of utter powerlessness. I felt that way a long time (in relative terms). And then I decided not to. Now I'm wielding the power here and WAW's game is off-kilter.


IMO That is exactly right. As a WAS I felt powerful and self esteem was at all time high. AS LBS I felt the loss of power, control of my life (or so I thought )and I felt like crap. Could not function.

Then it does happen, you take a tiny step towards taking some of your control back. Something as small as - not taking that phone call from WAS or answering an email. Then it takes on a life of its own. Sometimes moving forward and sometimes back, but never so far back that you are at the beginning.

You do start questioning WAS appeal ! But I think you have to be careful here not to form an opinion when you are surrounded in this drama. Do nothing that could be long term damaging or hurtful. Wait till the embers of the fires die down and then I think you will see if there is anything left in the ash to rebuild.

SP dont build your ego up so high that your head gets lost in the clouds. OR you will be like me and it sucks to be me !

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Let's get down to cases. As I write, seven days hence, this house - which WAW wanted, which WAW picked out, which WAW decorated - will have no WAW. I have every reason to expect that she will learn to cope with the changes to come, that she'll learn to manage these kids, that she'll remember to go to the supermarket (the other day WAW said, only half-jokingly, "I'll never have any fresh food again without you"), and that she'll experience pain and pleasure, grief and joy, sadness and laughter, frustration and anticipation, loss and gain, fear and courage, despair and hope.

And I have every reason to expect that my telling her she's okizay, that it's not the End Times, and that she can call on me to pitch in with some helping hands every now and again isn't about to change that. And I wouldn't want her to "cross the bridge" because she can't make it without me - I would want her to know that in fact she can make it without me but chooses not to.

But right now I'm quaffing the champagne of beers, and there's some French Onion dip surrounded by tasty chips - the kind with ridges - calling to me.

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Gotta get Bugles, SP. Nothing goes with french onion dip like good ol' BUGLES. laugh

Greek #1786428 06/20/09 07:03 AM
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"You are moving on to a healthier, wiser, stronger and richer place for yourself."

Really? I don't believe that's a valid argument to make D more palatable in general. It may be valid in cases of planned temporary separation with intent to improve the marriage. When you've lost half your time with the precious kids and their lives are potentially messed up, the family is broken, there is so much wasted as a result of divorce? When you are deprived of half your assets including half your retirement and future earnings and your WAW is off living with or having sex with OMs? When all this is done with intent and finality and often with stupidity and an awareness of how hurtful it is? Why choose to be: (1) unhappily married or (2) divorced when there was always a much better path which the WA chose to repeatedly ignore? I don't buy the suing at all! It may be permitted by man's law but its certainly not God's law. It's a very brutal and destructive act and reflects a certain lack of respect for life and basic understanding of what marriage and family was intended to be. Sorry, I'm getting sick of this "validating" and rationalization approach. If WAW's weren't so "rewarded" for their actions they would choose the 3rd option much more frequently. People are having affairs and MLC's and doing all sorts of nonsense and are not "at fault" for it; they are actually rewarded for it. Sorry I simply do not agree with validating people who file for D for stupid or selfish reasons. Divorce is willful, state sponsored destruction!!! The best some of us can do for ourselves is forgive the WA and the legal system in order to keep our sanity. But what continues to go on remains plain wrong and there needs to be much better awareness of this.

fb2 #1786470 06/20/09 01:20 PM
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@fb2 offers a rich and multi-faceted comment -- much "thicker" than it first appears. I've had to chew it over for a few hours.

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"You are moving on to a healthier, wiser, stronger and richer place for yourself."

Really? I don't believe that's a valid argument to make D more palatable in general.
I'm intrigued by the "in general" there at the end. To what does it refer? Did you mean, "I don't believe in general that's a valid argument to make," as if to say your general beliefs are...? Did you mean "I don't believe that's a valid argument in general..." as if to say that usually it's an invalid argument? Or did you mean "to make D more palatable in general," as if to suggest that the way one person copes has an effect on the global attitude towards divorce? Because if it's the latter, I think that's an inappropriate comment -- the sum of individuals' coping mechanisms does not equal social approval/disapproval of divorce society-wide.

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When you've lost half your time with the precious kids
This is an assumption. In my sitch, I have 60-65% custody, so I lose comparatively little. And it's not at all clear to me that one MUST lose any time, depending upon how the divorce is managed. Again in my sitch, WAW will have several instances of 10-14 days' custody in a row -- because I have long overseas business trips. But I always had long overseas business trips, so she "gains" nothing and I "lose" nothing. So it seems to me to be reaching a bit to try to draw a generalized "rule" in this instance.

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and their lives are potentially messed up
It is clearly the case that divorce is a net "bad" for childrens' lives. But as a friend recently pointed out to me, the 17-year-old son of our high school classmate recently committed suicide, and they were the Model American Family. So there's lots of ways in which one's life can be "potentially messed up." It happens to be the case that divorce is (or ought to be) one of the more avoidable ways.

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the family is broken
I used to take a strong position like yours on this, but now I'm not so sure. As I've been talking to my son since Kid D-Bomb, I've come to think of this in a different way. There are lots of kinds of families. My mother, for example, was raised for a considerable period of time by her grandmother. Family. My parents were divorced, but We Three (Mom, Brother, and Smiley's Persons) were a family, and we spent a lot of time with gparents and aunt/uncle/cousins -- family. And I asked my son what would have happened had I been killed in Iraq instead of having the good fortune to come through? Would he and sister and mom not be a family? So I think (for my POV only -- not putting this on you, fb2) that one form of the family is broken, but Family is, perhaps, merely dented.

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When you are deprived of half your assets including half your retirement and future earnings
That's an irritation -- and for some, like @Thinker, far more than an irritation. In my sitch, it's WAW's irritation, earning as she does 4x what I do.

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and your WAW is off living with or having sex with OMs?
If she's a single person, why shouldn't she be having sex? I certainly intend to. And with respect to the latter, my friend recently learned that his W has been having sex with OMs for 15 years. So the fact that he was "married" had comparatively little impact on that. The whole alpha-male, cuckoldry, etc. etc. thing doesn't really play with me, I'm afraid. WAW's post-D sex life is none of my business.

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When all this is done with intent and finality and often with stupidity and an awareness of how hurtful it is?
I agree that it is both stupid and hurtful. But I don't have control over the stupidity piece. I do have control, + or -, over how hurtful it is by the way I choose to act, react, and evaluate.

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Why choose to be: (1) unhappily married or (2) divorced when there was always a much better path which the WA chose to repeatedly ignore?
Assumptions carry a whole lot of the explanatory power in this one sentence! Quite apart from my own sitch, why assume "there was always a much better path"? That's a retrospective evaluation.

But if we learn anything from fine colleagues like @Greek and @DanceQueen and @pollyanna [and I'm referring to women because I don't recall there being a WAH or AWAH poster here? Anyone?], it's that your claim -- "there was always a much better path" -- is to the Walkaway by no means an obvious one. That's what MWD writes -- "logical" arguments about "better paths" have no effect on Walkaway because it doesn't seem logical to her/him.

And what if there isn't a "better path"? Here, too, MWD notes that not all marriages can be saved and, more importantly, not all marriages should be saved. In my own life, for example, it is clear to me that divorce was absolutely the best thing for my parents.

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I don't buy the suing at all! It may be permitted by man's law but its certainly not God's law.
Suffice it to say that not all of us live in accordance with your god's law, either personally or as a society. And marriage is, at the end of the day, a judicial creation, not a theological one. The gods can say you're married until the cows come home, but until you have a certification of marriage from the secular state, you're just shacking up. So I can see where this would cause anguish in the hearts and souls of the faithful, but in my case it's not operational.

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reflects a certain lack of respect for life and basic understanding of what marriage and family was intended to be.
That's a pretty bold statement. A lot of hubris there. Though I long ago abandoned them institutionally, the teachings of the Jesuit fathers always have a way of cropping up in my mind, and I seem to recall them admonishing us not to over-reach in our claims of "basic understanding." Without straying too far afield, I had occasion once to engage some very interesting historical work on the evolution of marriage as a social institution, and there is a great deal of evidence that what we consider to be "normal" marriage and family is really an artifact of the Protestant Reformation and only emerged in a recognizable form between 1550 and 1700. Even a cursory reading of the Old Testament certainly reveals a pretty flexible definition of "family" (how those old goomers managed to keep pumping out the babies....).

There's a point at which raging against the prevailing weather patterns becomes somewhat self-destructive, I think.

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Sorry, I'm getting sick of this "validating" and rationalization approach.
That's certainly your prerogative and no "sorry" is required. I wouldn't necessarily conflate the " 'validating' and rationalization approach" with approval of divorce as an institution. If I understand the DB method correctly -- a problematic assumption, but that's another discussion -- one is validating WAS's feelings, not course of action, because refusing to validate them would likely be perceived as an "attack" and would serve only to push WAS farther away. That might be satisfying from moralistic and/or revenge-centered frame, but would -- it is said -- be counterproductive in terms of regaining the relationships.

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If WAW's weren't so "rewarded" for their actions they would choose the 3rd option much more frequently.
Based on what evidence? Are we expected to believe that the 40%-50% divorce rate in this country has been produced by amicable divorces? Whether divorce is juridically "easy" or not is beside the point -- do you really believe that if one attacked and cursed and damned WAS, the marriage would be saved? Among other things, you seem to be giving yourself (metaphorically) a free ride. So LBS is perfect and it's all WAS's fault?

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People are having affairs and MLC's and doing all sorts of nonsense and are not "at fault" for it; they are actually rewarded for it.
Where has anyone ever said that? (And in terms of the MLC, I'm not at all convinced by your argument. My understanding is that the MLC is involuntary.)

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Sorry I simply do not agree with validating people who file for D for stupid or selfish reasons.
And who is the Stupidity and Selfish Judge? Each LBS? It seems to me that in at least some sitch's WAS is the Stupidity and Selfish Judge -- WAS says, "Hey LBS -- you've been Stupid and Selfish in this marriage, and I'm done." And what about those who file for smart and excellent reasons (from their own POV or even objectively [i.e., physical abuse, addiction])?

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Divorce is willful, state sponsored destruction!!!
I completely disagree. If anything, the state makes it much HARDER to get a divorce than to get married. Blood test, 20 bucks for a license -- and Bob's Your Uncle, you're married. Divorced? Mandatory waiting periods (so much for state-sponsored), division of assets, (often) mandatory restraining orders, court filings, court fees, (often) mandated parenting plans, custodial supervision, litigation..... Doesn't sound all that easy to me.

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The best some of us can do for ourselves is forgive the WA and the legal system in order to keep our sanity.
True enough. But doesn't forgiveness include precisely the kinds of acceptance that you're rejecting earlier in your post?

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But what continues to go on remains plain wrong and there needs to be much better awareness of this.
I don't believe there isn't awareness of it. I don't think anyone -- not even the authors of the silly "how to have a good divorce" books -- think Divorce as an institution is a social good.

That was a very passionate post, fb2, and I'm glad you put it up here. I'm sure it will generate very interesting discussion.

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SP-
Thought it appropriate to post this on your thread entitled, Power Shift" this am.

Peaks, valleys, ups, downs, rollercoasters, ebb and flow... After feeling lowest of low the past few days, I've been tasked w/what makes me feel rejected, what makes me happy, etc...

I believe I have found some personal mojo.

Thank you (and a few others) for my own "Power Shift.". Now, back to SP!


Me-46, D-21, S15, S13

After many years w/my head in the sand...
I FILED
Divorced 6/2011

The average woman would rather have beauty than brains, because the average man can see better than he can think.
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