Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife - Talk About Marriage
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post #1 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 11:01 AM Thread Starter
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Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

Hi I was hoping for advice from woman who have been in my Wives shoes or Husbands who have made the same mistakes I have.

We have been Married for 12 years and had a lot of great times, two beautiful children and a ton of fun, somewhere over the last 2 years things started to deteriorate, looking back I closed my self off from people, went through a rough patch at work and was going through the motions in life, instead of leaning on her tried to handle it all myself and ended up making her feel rejected and unloved, she tried to tell me she was feeling like this but in my haze I didn't see or hear.

Deep down I felt something not quite right but didn't know what or how to resolve it. Looking back I can see all this now and understand where I ****ed up but it took her telling me she wanted a divorce for me to realize this, I felt completely blindsided at first and I know that's my own fault.

I want so badly to undo the bad feelings I have left her with and to be the husband she deserves and I really feel like I can do that but not sure if it is too late?

She told me she is not sure if she can open back up to me again because she tried for so long and got so hurt she detached herself from me, she still loves me but is not in love with me currently.

If anyone has experienced this and got through it please help with any input.

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post #2 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 11:31 AM
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

I have been there. You can turn it around. I did after I realized how I was not attentive to my W.

1. Look your W in the eyes and with all sincerity in your heart let her know you are going to turn this around.
2. Return to dating like you did when you were dating. Movies, dinner, walks and day trips.
3. Random notes.
4. Always tell your W you appreciate her and everything she does.
5. Spend at least 15 hours per week doing something together.

“You're painfully alive in a drugged and dying culture.”
― Richard Yates, Revolutionary Road
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post #3 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 11:38 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

Thanks for taking the time to reply and some reassurance that there is some hope. Worst feeling in the world knowing you messed up and you hurt the woman you love.

I am going to do everything I can.
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post #4 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 11:46 AM
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

Absolutely. But there has to be open communication. In a LTR there are likely to be bouts of stress, depression, withdrawal, etc. Particularly with work, kids, financial strain, etc.

Be honest and own up to this. Discuss what a LTR means in terms of supporting each other, but also recognizing when you are the one with issues. Be open to the insights of your partner.

Your W may respond much better if you talk about how you feel about this, admit mistakes, and ask for help. Women tend to be more emotionally attuned, and she may react positively to your requests for help.

I pulled back harshly after getting a cancer diagnosis, and my w responded the same way. We both protected ourselves - in my case I WANTED to pull support because I didn't want her and the kids to rely on me if I were going to die. But I worked through it and then I talked about it and confronted her pullback as well. Neither of us really wanted that and we worked hard to rebuild intimacy. We had drifted anyway through life though we were always each other's best friend.

So pull her back and allow yourself to feel vulnerable and tell her you understand why she is apprehensive about making herself vulnerable again. It's part of life


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post #5 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 11:48 AM
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

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Originally Posted by CMB82 View Post
Thanks for taking the time to reply and some reassurance that there is some hope. Worst feeling in the world knowing you messed up and you hurt the woman you love.

I am going to do everything I can.
I understand completely.

Take a moment to let this sink in...your W(like mine) felt neglected for years. In my case, about 20. I'm a great dad and provider. My W will tell anyone that. Of those 20 years I was great at those two things but being a H I was not. Of those 20 years my W could have gone off to anyone or whatever but she did not. My W hoped and stayed course. Told me time and time again that sex was lacking. I ignored and felt I was doing enough. Just the idea that my W stayed the course until I would "get it" really got me. My W thought enough of me to wait and hope I came around! From that point on I completely changed my entire marriage and way I communicated/interacted with my W.

It is all in your actions. These actions must have staying power. Not just a flash in the pan then back to the old you. Through these actions your W should see you are turning it around.

“You're painfully alive in a drugged and dying culture.”
― Richard Yates, Revolutionary Road
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post #6 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 11:48 AM
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

I feel bad for you. Although she will tell you that she tried to tell you she was unhappy for a long time, she wasn't getting through to you and I think that's on her. It's wrong to all of the sudden hit someone with a divorce without them understanding beforehand something needs to change or it could lead to a divorce. I think men face this all the time. Since they are unfairly tasked with being responsible for all the finances, it takes such a toll on them they can take on anything else. Then their wives figure they will cash in and take their half while saying BS that they were unloved and ignored. Marriages today are built to fail in this regard.

"I've paid double for every transgression I've ever made and that motel and that boat are little to ask for"
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post #7 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 12:00 PM
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

I have to wonder about the hit the rough patch at work part. During the great recession my company cut 40% of staff and there were days we thought we'd go under. I don't recall my wife being remotely concerned or me making it an issue at all. I went thru the motions like everyone else.

Could you shed some light into the types of issues you encountered, your response, and your wife's expectations vs reality? I'm not of the "blame the guy first" mindset because work issues when you have young children can be very stressful, and any partner worth their marital salt would be expected to be understanding.
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post #8 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 12:14 PM
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

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Originally Posted by jb02157 View Post
I feel bad for you. Although she will tell you that she tried to tell you she was unhappy for a long time, she wasn't getting through to you and I think that's on her. It's wrong to all of the sudden hit someone with a divorce without them understanding beforehand something needs to change or it could lead to a divorce. I think men face this all the time. Since they are unfairly tasked with being responsible for all the finances, it takes such a toll on them they can take on anything else. Then their wives figure they will cash in and take their half while saying BS that they were unloved and ignored. Marriages today are built to fail in this regard.
jb, what century are you living in? Many women in marriages today work and equally contribute financially (and sometimes are the breadwinners), and they stand to lose just as much in a divorce as the man does. Granted, I live in an urban area where many women are educated and have careers--but the majority of America lives in urban centers in the 21st century. And modern divorce laws don't favor women as much as they used to.

I understand that your marriage is bad, but that bitterness filters in and colors nearly every post of yours that I read, and it makes me sad.

~Happily un-married since December 9, 2013~
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post #9 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 12:24 PM
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

@CMB82

It can be done. Learn what a good marriage can look like and how a man should act first. Then make a plan to move forward. Be the captain, chart a course and she may follow. Even if you can't repair the M, you'll be better a better partner, father, and man.

Start here...

A Summary of Dr. Harley's Basic Concepts

Fall in Love, Stay in Love, Willard F. Harley

8 Tools That Will Change Your Life | The Art of Manliness

Hold on to Your NUTs: The Relationship Manual for Men, Wayne M. Levine


Best

"In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing." T.R.

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post #10 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 12:32 PM
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

CM, no doubt you have a tough road ahead of you.

I want to caution you as you begin to revive your marriage. One of the single largest problems in this process is that the one who was taken for granted has a tendency to overcompensate by doing things that are not for the benefit of the marriage, and are driven by resentment.

While that is understandable to a degree, it doesn't make it acceptable. Your trick is going to be finding a way to walk that fine line between being remorseful and still enforcing boundaries.

When this happens, you are going to have to be able to firmly, without any anger, tell her that her actions are unacceptable.

Resentment will cause her to justify her actions by how you treated her at one time. Do not allow it.

If you do not enforce boundaries during this process, you will have essentially saved a marriage that wasn't worth saving. You need to take the approach that you are going to either revive a healthy marriage, or take a dying one off life support.

I would suggest that you read a book called Hold On To Your N.U.T.'s by Wayne Levine.

Good luck, and keep posting.


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"The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for." - Bob Marley
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post #11 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 12:33 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

I work a Commission Job and was sole provider financially for us all, lots of pressure in the build up to get to the point of being financially stable and I dreaded going to work each morning but felt trapped and ended up coming home frustrated and angry most evenings. She ran the house and felt undervalued and under appreciated which was never my Intention but I guess my actions showed otherwise. This has all passed but she disconnected during this point and it has taken me a long time to see that, its been one big miscommunication

1)I didn't realize she was hurt at first
2)I thought she was nitpicking and attacking me all the time
3)She thought I didn't care
4)She stops showing affection
5)I feel rejected
6)Boom here we are.

All could have been solved if i had pulled my head out the sand earlier.
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post #12 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 12:35 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

I work a Commission Job and was sole provider financially for us all, lots of pressure in the build up to get to the point of being financially stable and I dreaded going to work each morning but felt trapped and ended up coming home frustrated and angry most evenings. She ran the house and felt undervalued and under appreciated which was never my Intention but I guess my actions showed otherwise. This has all passed but she disconnected during this point and it has taken me a long time to see that, its been one big miscommunication

1)I didn't realize she was hurt at first
2)I thought she was nitpicking and attacking me all the time
3)She thought I didn't care
4)She stops showing affection
5)I feel rejected
6)Boom here we are.

All could have been solved if i had pulled my head out the sand earlier.
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post #13 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 12:41 PM
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

@mem2020

"Our ability to feel joy is directly related to how much pain we are willing to feel." - Mavash.

"The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for." - Bob Marley
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post #14 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 12:47 PM
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

Quote:
Originally Posted by CMB82 View Post
I work a Commission Job and was sole provider financially for us all, lots of pressure in the build up to get to the point of being financially stable and I dreaded going to work each morning but felt trapped and ended up coming home frustrated and angry most evenings. She ran the house and felt undervalued and under appreciated which was never my Intention but I guess my actions showed otherwise. This has all passed but she disconnected during this point and it has taken me a long time to see that, its been one big miscommunication

1)I didn't realize she was hurt at first
2)I thought she was nitpicking and attacking me all the time
3)She thought I didn't care
4)She stops showing affection
5)I feel rejected
6)Boom here we are.

All could have been solved if i had pulled my head out the sand earlier.
And you own up to that. For many, when one owns up to their misgivings, etc. it opens up the conversation and course to repair/correct what went wrong. Lay it all out of the table.

In no uncertain terms and point blank I told my W I was a complete idiot for not listening and acknowledging what she was saying. In now fully understanding the issue I told my W I will turn it around and be the H she hoped(prayed) for all those years. With my actions I was able to turn the marriage around and be all that my W hoped I would be.

“You're painfully alive in a drugged and dying culture.”
― Richard Yates, Revolutionary Road
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post #15 of 149 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 01:05 PM
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Re: Need Advice on reconnecting with Wife

Quote:
Originally Posted by CMB82 View Post
I work a Commission Job and was sole provider financially for us all, lots of pressure in the build up to get to the point of being financially stable and I dreaded going to work each morning but felt trapped and ended up coming home frustrated and angry most evenings. She ran the house and felt undervalued and under appreciated which was never my Intention but I guess my actions showed otherwise. This has all passed but she disconnected during this point and it has taken me a long time to see that, its been one big miscommunication

1)I didn't realize she was hurt at first
2)I thought she was nitpicking and attacking me all the time
3)She thought I didn't care
4)She stops showing affection
5)I feel rejected
6)Boom here we are.

All could have been solved if i had pulled my head out the sand earlier.
Have you excluded the obvious? (Affair)
Surprised nobody mentioned that. I am not usually the one to extrapolate first.
It is unusual to just decide to leave like this. People do go through rough patches and a strong partnership usually can work through these things.
I am hesitant to recommend fighting for her, in case there is someone else (if there is, there is much less chance of success). If there definitely isn't, I don't think all is lost.
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