Oh, and by the way J, the examples he was giving about expectations were things like finances, family traditions, vacations, housekeeping, etc. I don't think he would give any argument about expecting a safe and monogamous relationship, free of adultery and physical abuse. Where people draw lines around emotional abuse and addiction can vary, but this wasn't what he was talking about. I also think that oftentimes it's what people are missing in the first category that can lead to the second category of offenses, so to me this is all relevant.
Me:38 XW:38 T:11 years M:8 years Kids: S14, D11, D7 BD/Move out day: 6/17/14, D final Dec 15
I'll be honest...I am not seeing the uniqueness or main point of what he is saying. (I also was not raised with any type of religion. and I grew up and live in an area where religion is not really embedded in our culture - so I am probably the wrong person for the discussion)
Is he addressing married couples? I do not think what he says is applicable to someone that is dating. It also still sounds like an argument for unconditional love for a partner. (loving your partner like you would Christ) but I think that type of thinking can be dangerous and easily exploited by very bad partners. All you have to do is read some of the threads in the Mid Life Crisis section of the forum!
I do agree that people go into marriage with different dreams and goals and do not communicate this enough from the beginning. My dream was that my husband and I would save for a house and kids (I very clearly communicated this). I never told him that he should not withdraw over 700 dollars a week in addition to 100 dollars a day in secret and spend it on god knows what. I did not think things like that needed to be communicated. (sorry..i cant get over that) So, me personally.. I was not dealing with someone that had different dreams. I was dealing with someone that was lying our whole marriage by ommission.
My point is that, all those things hes saying are not applying to some of the horrific stories on here. Most of us on here have been through the EXTREMES. In my case, I was not nagging or on top of my ex husband ENOUGH. I should have been demanding more and questioning more (which is opposite of what Andy Stanley is saying). Like, "let me see your credit card statements and bank accounts. It doesnt make sense" Instead, I just trusted that he was working hard and I was often deflected. Not to mention I was too tired to keep up with it as I working and primary care taker)
If he is saying, don't sweat the small stuff and nag your partner about all the little things, then yeah. I am in complete agreement. If he is saying be appreciative of everything and do not take things for granted. Yes I am in agreement of that as well. It makes sense. So yes, I get all of that. I was raised with that. Not one person in my immediate or even closely extended family has been divorced. There has been no cheating or leaving or addiction either in my family. So i guess, part of what he is saying I already know.
I think when someone makes an effort to meet someone else's needs, a healthy person wants to reciprocate. It becomes mutual. And it helps to create a bond of good feeling. He's saying, just keep meeting the other person's needs no matter what and if both people are able to do that, you get a happy marriage. Yup. I can see that. But you have to have two people willing and capable of that. You also have to have someone willing to accept that their needs cannot always be addressed or like he says, you can't have expectations that your needs will be met at every point during the relationship. You have a newborn. Sorry. There's just not energy. A project at work. Same situation. I understand all that.
I disagree with you that when people miss the stuff in the first category it leads to things like adultery or stealing or lying. I think that for someone to do those things (your wife - my ex) - it requires some sort of serious dysfunction within them. They were manipulative and deceptive beyond what someone like Andy Stanly is referring to, I guess I am not seeing the bigger picture here.
Also, it is impossible to meet someone else's needs at all times. To love them like you would Christ. So does that mean a happy marriage is impossible?
Hey friend I know it has been a long time. I just wanted to stop by and share some news with you.
Two weeks ago I became engaged to the man I have been seeing for the last three and half years. He is likely as perfect a man for me as some I could have designed for myself and I am very happy. It means of move of country and a whole new life with him.
Being here so sad and overwhelmed seems like a lifetime ago, but I am so so grateful for everything this site brought me.
So there you have it...you are someone I wanted to tell.
I think about you often. I hope and your lovely children are thriving.