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post #31 of 194 (permalink) Old 02-01-2011, 08:20 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

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Originally Posted by credamdóchasgra View Post
It's not about whether it's free. I understand it sufficiently for my own satisfaction:

it was playing cards.
He has a weird anti bias against 3 things:
1. Things his parents did (play cards on Friday nights with friends)
2. Things that he thinks "waste time."
3. Things that my family loves to do together

he's kind of judgmental about things that weren't "his idea."
plus he thought I was nagging, because I repeated myself.
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Unfortunately a lot of men HATE IT when we repeat ourselves. I have this problem too and have diligently worked on it and am much better. We do this because we don't think WE'RE BEING HEARD, so we continue to repeat ourselves until we feel that the person we're talking to really HEARD us.

And remember, while his anti-bias might be "weird" to you, it's perfectly normal to him. Sometimes we have to accept those things we don't understand/agree with, simply because they are not that big of deal in the scheme of things.

Do you really want to ever start or be in the middle of a disagreement about the fact that his parents used to play cards on Friday night?

I know its hard, and I've been there - but quit obsessing about those things that aren't within your control and those things that you don't own. While what happens in our past molds our future behavior, let go of those things that aren't deal breakers. Put them in his "weird habits" column and carry on - we all have them.

"Don't Find Fault - Find A Remedy" Henry Ford
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post #32 of 194 (permalink) Old 02-01-2011, 08:21 AM Thread Starter
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

MWIL,
I hate ultimatums also. I only go there after exhausting every other option.

How "different" is your H's "overall" behavior now when you compare it to what it was like before the TMI?


Quote:
Originally Posted by MarriedWifeInLove View Post
Thanks - I am trying and have seen small nuggets of positive behavior from him in response.

The one I have extreme difficulty with is acceptable behaviors and consequences when they aren't met. I'm terrible at issuing ultimatums and following them through and unfortunately, he knows it. His medical issues don't help - he knows perfectly well that I'm not the type of person to abandon somewho who is sick.

He, for some reason, doesn't believe I love him and am only staying with him because I feel sorry for him because he's sick, but that's actually not true. I wouldn't stay with anyone because I felt sorry for them - I truly love this man and don't know what I'm doing wrong that he believes that I don't love him - maybe this is the root of the problems sexually - he doesn't believe I'm with him for the right reasons - but that's BS, I am there for the right reasons but apparently I'm not showing that in my actions and I don't know what I'm doing wrong, honestly - have tried to figure out why he would think this and I can't put my finger on anything.

Looking forward to your future post(s).

Maybe I could hire you as my shrink...what do you charge per hour?
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post #33 of 194 (permalink) Old 02-01-2011, 08:23 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

I am a man, and the warmer one. She is cooler.

2. Typically initiate calls/texts/emails when apart/one or both are at work
3. Make “peace” after a fight even when your partner clearly wronged you
4. Walk around visibly angry/VERY angry after a fight (this comes across as “I am furious that you – the person I LOVE SO MUCH – is doing x,y,z to ME
6. Are mostly/always initiating physical contact (hugs, kisses, touches, groping)
7. When anxious you initiate “talks” about the R, typically to “fix” them/their behavior
8. Do MORE, sometimes WAY MORE than your fair share of housework
9. Put their needs ahead of yours whenever there is a priority conflict
10. Are constantly seeking their approval
11. Show anxiety or fear when they are angry/frustrated with you
12. Initiate sex when their body language radiates a “lack” of interest/desire, pout/sulk get angry when they tactfully decline sex

The COOL partner wants less warmth so they:
1. React irritably/with hostility to HOT behaviors such as:
a. Discussions about the R
b. Requests for sex. An irritated “NO” when asked for sex is an attempt to throw a bucket of ice water on a painfully overheated moment

I have shown the applicable ones above.
I think this dynamic is even worse when the MAN is the warmer one.
At this point, after so many years.....I don't know if I want to even change it.
It is useful for a future relationship however.
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post #34 of 194 (permalink) Old 02-01-2011, 08:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarriedWifeInLove View Post
Unfortunately a lot of men HATE IT when we repeat ourselves. I have this problem too and have diligently worked on it and am much better. We do this because we don't think WE'RE BEING HEARD, so we continue to repeat ourselves until we feel that the person we're talking to really HEARD us.

And remember, while his anti-bias might be "weird" to you, it's perfectly normal to him. Sometimes we have to accept those things we don't understand/agree with, simply because they are not that big of deal in the scheme of things.

Do you really want to ever start or be in the middle of a disagreement about the fact that his parents used to play cards on Friday night?

I know its hard, and I've been there - but quit obsessing about those things that aren't within your control and those things that you don't own. While what happens in our past molds our future behavior, let go of those things that aren't deal breakers. Put them in his "weird habits" column and carry on - we all have them.
All of what you say is true.
AND...
1. A simple "sure" or "I see what you mean" or "I see yiur point" would SHUT ME UP.
NOT an unreasonable request.

Goal in counseling tomorrow:
how can we *both* have opinions at the same time, and it is not a "competition"?
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post #35 of 194 (permalink) Old 02-01-2011, 08:31 AM Thread Starter
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

Why not steadily ease up - lower the temperature. I bet she would really like that.

When she asks you "why didn't you" - call/text/email - etc?

Why didn't you ....,.... - that you usually do the answer is:

"Oh - I got busy doing X" - said in a friendly way.

You are NOT angry you are just not "chasing/crowding".

If she gets cranky with you about the change in behavior, often the best answer is: "If you wanted X, why didn't you call/text/email .... me"?

The next squabble you have that clearly is NOT your fault. Don't apologize. You don't need to demand SHE apologize. But stop encouraging her to treat you like this.




Quote:
Originally Posted by bluesky View Post
I am a man, and the warmer one. She is cooler.

2. Typically initiate calls/texts/emails when apart/one or both are at work
3. Make “peace” after a fight even when your partner clearly wronged you
4. Walk around visibly angry/VERY angry after a fight (this comes across as “I am furious that you – the person I LOVE SO MUCH – is doing x,y,z to ME
6. Are mostly/always initiating physical contact (hugs, kisses, touches, groping)
7. When anxious you initiate “talks” about the R, typically to “fix” them/their behavior
8. Do MORE, sometimes WAY MORE than your fair share of housework
9. Put their needs ahead of yours whenever there is a priority conflict
10. Are constantly seeking their approval
11. Show anxiety or fear when they are angry/frustrated with you
12. Initiate sex when their body language radiates a “lack” of interest/desire, pout/sulk get angry when they tactfully decline sex

The COOL partner wants less warmth so they:
1. React irritably/with hostility to HOT behaviors such as:
a. Discussions about the R
b. Requests for sex. An irritated “NO” when asked for sex is an attempt to throw a bucket of ice water on a painfully overheated moment

I have shown the applicable ones above.
I think this dynamic is even worse when the MAN is the warmer one.
At this point, after so many years.....I don't know if I want to even change it.
It is useful for a future relationship however.
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post #36 of 194 (permalink) Old 02-01-2011, 08:31 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

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I don't think he is angry that I'm not working.
I'm finishing a degree and defending in March, and I offered to work part-time (I had 2 opportunities), but maybe he resents it under the surface and doesn't even realize it.
He prides himself on being so supportive of me while I take a year off to finish my degree, and I know he's stressed about the inconsistency of his employment (free-lance IT support).
He's never made me feel bad about it.
Since the whole "provider" thing is important to him, I could see how it plays a role in his stress.
---but isn't it an example of "taking it out on me" to get all irate with me in our conversations?
I'd much rather he TELL me he's resentful of carrying all the $ responsibility; I could understand.
Instead, he just snaps over other things and tells me I'm the problem.
And I'm sick of him getting away with losing his temper over small things.
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He is losing his temper because this is the only way he knows how to handle the "emotions" within him as he is a man and we all know, generally, that they suck at displaying their feelings/emotions. While the issues are small to you - they might be gigantic to him. Different strokes - he's not you, he's him.

It's evident that he's not going to TELL YOU that he's resentful. Since you know this, ignore anything that comes out of that frustration and inability to express himself.

Since my husband's brain injury, his thought process, memory and some cognitive processes do not work right. Since I now know this and have been through extensive counselling and support groups to understand that things don't "fire right" inside his head, it's a lot easier to accept some behavior that while considered "not normal" in a marriage where there are no health issues, it's a "new normal" in my house. Doesn't make it right or wrong, it just is what it is. I've learned skills on how to deal with it and not engage in the issue, knowing that, for the most part, it's beyond his control.

Quit ENGAGING - if he loses his temper - walk away - it doesn't matter who is right/wrong, doesn't matter if it's over something small - just walk away - DISENGAGE - if you can't become a solution to the problem, don't become part of the problem. You become part of the problem when you ENGAGE when he loses his temper. If you just stayed calm, walked away and did not engage him in an argument, then this would indicate to him that this type of behavior "isn't working with you." When things don't work, we usually move on to something else.

My husband has also had temper issues since his brain injury. I used to take them personally - then, after extensive counselling realized that it's not personal - I just happen to be the person that is the closest to him and so I become the target - when it's really not about me. It's about his frustration and anger about what's happened to him. He is in a weekly anger management group and this has helped tremendously - maybe your husband could find a "free" group to deal with some of his issues - free groups are everywhere, you just have to find them.

I've read a lot of your posts throughout TAM and a common thread I find is that you both keep butting heads and trying to control each other and want to win in every single disagreement. Someone has to step back, doesn't make you less of a person or mean that your opinions/wants/needs don't matter, but someone has to disengage or you're going to keep going round and round and round and get nowhere, just like a gerbil on a wheel.

Why don't YOU be the person who disengages?

"Don't Find Fault - Find A Remedy" Henry Ford
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post #37 of 194 (permalink) Old 02-01-2011, 08:48 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

MWIL, you're right that we're butting heads.
But I'm afraid of setting this precedent:

he gets to the point where he loses his temper, yelling at me to shut up and get off his case already.
So I walk away. Disengage.
The lesson is: "if I yell at her to shut up and get off my case, she will. She will shrink away under my intimidating, inappropriate outburst. It worked."
me shutting up and shrinking away IS what he wants.
I don't want a pattern where he can shout me into silence. THAT'S what's not working for me.

Instead, things need to be caught and calm down before they hit that point, before he loses his cool.
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post #38 of 194 (permalink) Old 04-29-2011, 10:08 PM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

This is exactly whats going on in my life right now. I'm the HOT one. Has the link been posted regarding how to counteract this?
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post #39 of 194 (permalink) Old 04-29-2011, 10:54 PM Thread Starter
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

Free,
What would happen if you simply began to make some minor alterations to your typical behavior:
1. Stop saying "ILY" first. Just stop doing it. For instance if you always say it when you leave the house in the morning you replace it with something friendly but less "hot". A simple "see you later" in an upbeat voice. That way you aren't leaving without saying "goodbye" you are just cooling the room a bit. In fact in every case where you currently say "ILY" first, replace it with something polite/but less "hot". And when your partner says it to you - just respond with "me to" or "love you too".
2. Stop initiating communication during the day. And please don't keep doing it while telling yourself you had a "valid" excuse. It is very rare that some question/discussion cannot wait until tonight. When your partner reaches out to you be friendly but keep the interaction brief. If he/she sends you a text - you can reply but keep it short and/or funny/playful. But don't flirt - let him/her make things sexual with you.
3. Pick one night a week to do something for you. The gym is best. Cards with your friends is fine. Going to a bar - is not good.
4. Do NOT do a lot more than your fair share of housework/cooking/errands. If you are, start making specific requests of your partner: Can you give me a hand cleaning the kitchen/folding the laundry/etc.
5. Ease up a bit on giving hugs - you don't have to stop - but ease up. Let them hug you/touch you.

Make an effort to be in a good mood when together. And be playful - a little banter/teasing (not about sensitive subjects like weight) is good. And if it turns into a game of chase/tag/or even better a wrestling match over the remote control - that is good. But let your partner meet you halfway on that.

When your partner 'challenges' you on this - do not explain and do not get defensive.
Them: Why didn't you call me today?
You: What?
Them: You usually call.
You: Work was really busy.
Them: Irritated - oh
You: I was thinking we might want to upgrade your cell phone plan?
Them: What?
You: So you can make "outbound" calls/texts when you want to get in touch with me
Them: Very funny
You: Quietly smiling


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This is exactly whats going on in my life right now. I'm the HOT one. Has the link been posted regarding how to counteract this?
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post #40 of 194 (permalink) Old 04-29-2011, 11:44 PM Thread Starter
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

Two more things on you being less "hot" which is making her feel "crowded" which sadly is making her love you LESS.
1. Talking about the relationship when YOU are initiating the talk. STOP doing that. If she brings it up you can listen and ask questions. But don't prolong it. Listen ask questions - and if she says stuff that is unfair/wrong about you just say "I hear you and I also disagree". Don't justify and don't explain. Just state your opinion.
2. Radiating a sexual vibe at her when she clearly does not want that. If she is tired/down/anxious or just plain showing no interest do not grope, leer, stare, make comments. In fact stop complimenting her appearance at all. UNLESS she asks. If she asks "do I look good/does this outfit look good" - just say "yes". Do NOT say "you look hot".



Quote:
Originally Posted by freeboro View Post
This is exactly whats going on in my life right now. I'm the HOT one. Has the link been posted regarding how to counteract this?
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post #41 of 194 (permalink) Old 05-17-2011, 05:51 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

I can see the wisdom in this, but some of it seems to go against the repairing methods that are encouraged by the Mort Fertel's emails. One specifically does encourage things that one spouse can do to repair which includes touching and complimenting.

Thoughts?
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post #42 of 194 (permalink) Old 05-17-2011, 08:33 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

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I can see the wisdom in this, but some of it seems to go against the repairing methods that are encouraged by the Mort Fertel's emails. One specifically does encourage things that one spouse can do to repair which includes touching and complimenting.

Thoughts?
From one of Mort Fertel's emails:

"failed marriages eventually
succeed because at least one spouse commits to
doing SMALL THINGS in great ways over an extended
period of time.

Do you want REAL change in your marriage? Then
establish the RIGHT HABITS and do them
CONSISTENTLY. Talk and touch everyday, for
example....."

This seems to be contrary to the thinking of what a warm partner should be doing to the cold one.
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post #43 of 194 (permalink) Old 05-17-2011, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

Let me summarize what Mort is suggesting:
- Try harder
- Be nicer/kinder/more considerate

If you are the "cool" partner it works like magic. Because maybe your "warmer/hot" partner is in the process of giving up. OR if you are the warm but clumsy partner who is always forgetting stuff, always giving them the type of gift they have told you they don't like - it can help.

In a relationship where the "hot" partner has already been doing WAY MORE than their cooler partner, what Mort suggests simply makes the problem worse. Because at "core" the hot/cool interaction really means this:
Hot: I love you more than you love me. I NEED you to love me more than you do.
Hot: YOU are more important than I am. You deserve a better partner than me, so I will try to make up for being the inferior partner by making more/much more effort than you do.
Cool: I feel smothered. WHY are you always crowding me? I don't really feel like saying ILY 5 times a day, but since YOU say it to me, I am pressured into responding in kind. BUT I DON'T WANT TO.
Cool: The LAST thing in the world I want to do is have sex with you. I ALREADY feel smothered, and sex just amplifies that. And in general your clingy/constant presence irritates me and is a HUGE turnoff.

Given that context:
The WORST thing the hot partner can do is get angry and act like a jerk. Because the cool partner sees that for what it is, the fury of rejection.

The two things that produce the best outcome for the hot partner are to be:
- More attractive (go to the gym, work on your conversational skills, learn how to more effectively deal with conflict) AND
- Less available

And a big part of combining those two things is being fun/playful while ALSO being less "loving" in the 5 love languages.

Quote:
Originally Posted by This is me View Post
From one of Mort Fertel's emails:

"failed marriages eventually
succeed because at least one spouse commits to
doing SMALL THINGS in great ways over an extended
period of time.

Do you want REAL change in your marriage? Then
establish the RIGHT HABITS and do them
CONSISTENTLY. Talk and touch everyday, for
example....."

This seems to be contrary to the thinking of what a warm partner should be doing to the cold one.
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post #44 of 194 (permalink) Old 05-17-2011, 10:12 PM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

MEM,

Need some clarification.

1. Say you approached your SO for intimacy, and she said...I'm too tired tonight babe. I will get you tomorrow. and you agree, because she did look tired.
Tomorrow comes, and you give her one of those 7 second kisses, and nod towards the bed, then she says...no way! It's 11 pm.
And this after she finished watching 2 hours of those 30 minute celebrity news shows.

Ok. Bare with me...these all tie together...

2. So I turn down the temp. For a long time. Thinking maybe she's cold and I'm smothering. Although NOW I realized it was a fitness test; this was still pre separation days. Except my lower thermometer didn't work at all.

So, my question is how long do you wait? I mean, there's only so long a high temp person can go cold before they reach absolute zero and just check out.

I also don't get the part about NEVER talking about the relationship. I mean, there has to come a point where you just have do bring up the fact that needs aren't being met, etc? Waiting too long seems self destructive for the marriage.
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post #45 of 194 (permalink) Old 05-17-2011, 11:28 PM Thread Starter
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

In that specific scenario you deal with it in the moment:
Babe, you chose to watch 2 hours of tv just now. It is not my responsibility to manage your sleep schedule. When you commit to connecting with me I expect you to manage your schedule in a way consistent with your commitment.

Now at that point you are going to learn something really important. Does she RESPECT you? If she does she admits she is in the wrong and either gets undressed or SWEARS tomorrow she will rock your world. And then tomorrow she does.

If those things don't happen you turn the temp down in areas that are important to HER. And you start thinking about Plan B, because this is no way to go through life.

And intermingled with all this - you consistently pass her fitness tests because your W was giving you a steady stream of them.



Quote:
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MEM,

Need some clarification.

1. Say you approached your SO for intimacy, and she said...I'm too tired tonight babe. I will get you tomorrow. and you agree, because she did look tired.
Tomorrow comes, and you give her one of those 7 second kisses, and nod towards the bed, then she says...no way! It's 11 pm.
And this after she finished watching 2 hours of those 30 minute celebrity news shows.

Ok. Bare with me...these all tie together...

2. So I turn down the temp. For a long time. Thinking maybe she's cold and I'm smothering. Although NOW I realized it was a fitness test; this was still pre separation days. Except my lower thermometer didn't work at all.

So, my question is how long do you wait? I mean, there's only so long a high temp person can go cold before they reach absolute zero and just check out.

I also don't get the part about NEVER talking about the relationship. I mean, there has to come a point where you just have do bring up the fact that needs aren't being met, etc? Waiting too long seems self destructive for the marriage.
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