Originally 34 rules also known as DB rules, from MWD, Sandi would post these as Sandi's list.
1.Do not pursue, reason, chase, beg, plead or implore! This turns the spouse completely off!
2. No frequent phone calls to spouse.......let him/her be the one to call you. Then don't try to hang on to your spouse through conversation.....instead, you say good-bye first.
3. Do not point out good points in marriage or try to get him/her to read marriage books, look at your M pictures, etc. Especially, do not get him/her to read the DB/DR book. That is for you only!
4. Do not follow your spouse around the house like a puppy dog trying to get his/her time and attention.
5. Do not encourage talk about the future. They don't want to think about a future with you at the moment, so stay clear of that subject.
6. Do not ask for help from family members or friends. Don't discuss private matters with them that would upset your spouse.
7. Do not ask for reassurances (That is showing neediness and being clingy.) Show self-respect and self confidence.
8. Do not buy gifts to make "brownie points". (Can't buy his/her love and affection.)
9. Do not schedule dates together at this point. (That is pursuing.) Save for later when the R is much better.
10. Do not spy on spouse by checking emails, phone bills, etc. (Not good for you and will make matters worse.)
11. Do not say "I Love You" (It is being "pushy" and trying to make your spouse say it back to you......he/she will despise you for it.)
12. Act "as if" you are moving on with your life with or without them and that you are going to be okay. Keep a good attitude. 13. Be cheerful, strong, outgoing and attractive at all times! In other words, be the best you can be and look the best you can look at all times. Even when wearing jeans and T-shirt, wear good cologne, b/c it does cause the spouse to take notice.
14. Don't sit around waiting on your spouse to see what kind of mood he/she is in or what he/she is going to do or say – get busy, think of things to do. Go to church, go out with friends, etc. in order to get a life for yourself without waiting on your wife/husband.....but it is okay to invite them, just don't act as if it will change your plans if they do or don't go.
15. When at home with your spouse, (if you usually start the conversation---then don't, wait for him/her) then, be rather scarce or with your words, but don't sound rude or too short like you are mad. If your spouse asks what's wrong....just say "nothing" and have a pleasant expression on your face. Keep it short and simple. Don't get into an argument! Stay polite and don’ t act like you are pouting. Use poise and class. This does not mean to act like you aren’t speaking, but don’t be overly talkative.
16. If you are in the habit of asking your spouse his/her whereabouts, ASK THEM NOTHING!! No matter what time he/she comes home! You are giving them space and asking no questions! You enjoy your time with your kids, friends, etc. Remember, you are getting a life, also.
17. You need to make your partner think that you have had an awakening and, as far as you are concerned, you are going to move on with your life, with or without your spouse.
18. Do not be nasty, angry or even cold - just pull back and wait to see if spouse notices and, more important, realize what he/she will be missing. (But never ask him/her if he/she has noticed any changes!!) This is important! If you do, then you have blown it.
19. No matter what you are feeling TODAY, only show your spouse happiness and contentment. This can confuse some of them b/c it is not what they expected. Show your spouse someone he/she would want to be around all the time, somebody that can be attractive and fun to be with. That somebody is you! Don't overkill in your attempts to outshine another person your spouse may be having an A with (if there is OP in the picture) to the point of looking like your attempts are "fake" b/c your spouse will see through all of that.
20. All questions about marriage should be put on hold, until your spouse wants to talk about it (which may be a while) so this takes patient on your behalf.
21. Never lose your cool! Don't let your spouse trap you into a fight. Don't take her/his bait.....leave the room or the house for a while, if you have to, in order to avoid a fight.
22. Don't be overly enthusiastic, don't over-kill; in anything you do b/c it will come across as fake.
23. Do not argue about how your spouse feels about something (it only makes his/her feelings more negative.) Only they know how they feel!
24. Be patient......very, very patient. Give your spouse space and time. When you pull back, it will draw them towards you. It feels opposite of what you want to do, but it works!
25. Listen carefully to what your spouse is really saying to you. Look them in the eyes when they talk to you. Do not interrupt them when they are speaking and stop what you may be working on to look at them when they talk. This shows them that you really care about what they are saying.
26. Learn to back off, shut up and walk away when you want to speak out (or scream and yell).
27. Take care of yourself (exercise, sleep, laugh & focus on all the other parts of your life that are not in turmoil). This is for your health's sake.
28. Be strong and confident and learn to speak softly. Read self help books, inspirational books or listen to tapes. They are for you only.
29. Know that if you can do 180's, your smallest CONSISTENT actions will be noticed much more than any words you can say or write.
30. Do not be openly show that you are "desperate" or "needy" even when you are hurting more than ever and truly feel desperate and needy. This is a large turn-off for your spouse.
31. Do not focus on yourself when communicating with your spouse, instead, focus on them.
32. Do not believe anything they say and 50% of what they do. Your spouse will speak in absolute negatives because he/she is hurting and scared.
33. Do not give up no matter how dark it is or how bad you feel.
34. Do not ask your spouse if he/she has noticed your changes. Those changes are for you and for the rest of your life...with or without your spouse. If it is just to get your spouse back...they won't last and the same problems will return.
35. Do not send several TM's or emails throughout the day unless absolutely necessary.
36. It is best to stay away from the bar scenes where other problems easily arise.
37. Do not backslide from your hard earned changes
Edit- There is a series of threads that Sandi2 has written They are linked together for easy reading. There is also a link in the homework assignment but just in case you missed it. I will provide it below.
Thanks you, Cadet. I originally referred to it as just some "Do and Don't Tips" for the LBS, and it became known as Sandi's Rules. I cringe whenever a newcomer says they broke a rule. They were just intended to be more of a guide for the desperate LBS who did not know what to do or where to start.
If anyone doesn't understand any of the 37 listed, I will be glad to try and give a more detailed explanation. When I wrote these down, it was with no particular order and just as they came to my mind. In fact, several things could be added.
Thanks again, Cadet, and I really light your name in green neon lights.
It is not about what you feel should work in your M. It is about doing the work that gets the right results. Do what works!
One question I have about the 'rules' regards asking family for help. I assume this means the family of the WAS? Reading that I did see it as possible that a LBS may try and use their own family to instigate some communication or a reconciliation etc. A little experience now suggests to me this would be just as a bad an idea as trying to use the WAS's family.
About presents: what about birthdays, anniversaries etc. Buying flowers to say sorry is different from celebrating a birthday. In principle should all occasions be ignored until there is 'progress' in the R?
How does someone reconcile pulling back with being confident, cool etc. To me it seems a different balancing act that may end up with the LBS appearing aloof.
How are these rules affected by being physically separated or by having children?
Is there any general guideline for how long these 'rules' should be adhered to. I ask because elsewhere online there are NC guides that suggest 30 days NC etc. I understand pulling back but should it be done for a set period of time or until (hopefully) there is a positive change in your sitch?
By the bar scene I assume that means going out with the intention to date/pull? How about socialising with new friends/people unknown to WAS. In a relatively small town it is possible to be seen by WAS or their friends whilst out, even if this is in a completely innocent scenario. Any advice on that? Of course you have to get out. Maybe I'm asking also about how to handle any fallout from being seen just being out and about with 'new friends.'
How do you reconcile focusing on your spouse in communication whilst not appearing to ask what they're up to or be seen as pursuing.
Are there any general exceptions to ignoring what you see/hear?
BD - 30TH JAN 2015 S - 30TH JAN 2015 PA CONFIRMED - 16TH FEB 2015 (SINCE AT LEAST OCT 2014) CONTINUAL TALK OF D ME: 31 W: 28 T: 10yrs M: 4.5yrs D:5, S:6