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post #121 of 194 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 10:46 AM Thread Starter
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

The way to detach is to slowly and steadily spend less and less time together. At your current level of "attachment" you are completely unable to withstand a "face down".

And a "face down" is:
Her: Maybe we should just break up
You: I agree
Her: (getting more aggressive) I really mean it
You: (firmly) Me too
Her: Fine then maybe I should go pack now
You: (silent) because at this point further conversation is counter productive

But you are going to need a few months of steadily cutting back on time together and if it was me, I would completely stop initiating sex. You are letting her bully you. That isn't really about her, its about you.


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We have talked about it at greath length, she insists over and over that she's never going to him, that he "screwed me over", etc. They don't text/call one another, there is nothing sexual in the Facebook stuff, but yes this is a major problem. From time to time she has talked about how she's trying hard to get over him, she will delete him from Facebook, but then add him back later on. She always has some odd excuse about it too. I am not sure how deep a person can say this is in terms of an emotional affair as there is really no participation. The one incredibly WRONG thing that happened was them visiting one another.

I tried talking to her about it last night but the conversation got turned to something else, we were having a very good intimate conversation at dinner about some other issues so I didn't get it steered back to the other man, but it will, very shortly. I'm trying to work on what I'm going to say, because inevitably she first plays the ANGER card, says mean things to me, then she plays the MAYBE WE SHOULDN'T BE TOGETHER card, and finally breaks down crying with the I AM SUCH A BAD PERSON, I AM WORTHLESS card.

I do NOT know why seemingly any conversation dealing with the deep issues that have hurt us ALWAYS seem to fall into this same spiraling argument, I try and defer, to deflect, to steer it back, and keep it sane and keep the emotions out of it as much as possible, but inevitably she gets all pissed off at me, and ends up turning my unhappiness into something I should apologize to HER for.

Right now I'm working the 180 to build up my resilience and to show that I'm a strong MAN, and not some wimp who just allows his wife to love another man. The other man may have absolutely no idea how much she loves him, she may say that she would never ever go to him, she may even deny now that she does love him, but that doesn't make this any easier for me, to try and decide if this is worth the effort I am making to fix things.
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post #122 of 194 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 08:37 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

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She went to see an ex boyfriend a year ago, a guy that had totally screwed her over 12 years ago, they did not have sex but they were at his hotel talking for several hours, and she lied about it, then lied about the context of the event.
MEM is giving you some great advice, so follow it. I will only ask why you are so sure that they did not have sex. It is clear she lied about every other aspect of it, so why do you believe this? You really do need to detach.
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post #123 of 194 (permalink) Old 05-01-2012, 09:24 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

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MEM is giving you some great advice, so follow it. I will only ask why you are so sure that they did not have sex. It is clear she lied about every other aspect of it, so why do you believe this? You really do need to detach.
I go off of the journal, she wrote some very personal and painful stuff in the journal, it seems to be the place where she went 100% honest about everything. And yes, I know, detaching, it is hard.

And to address the above post, this is my plan, and I think she knows it, that the next time she drops the "I'm leaving" card, I'm telling her to do so. I'm tired of that being used against me, it is incredibly mean and thoughtless.


Without trust, words become the hollow sound of a wooden gong. With trust, words become life itself.
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post #124 of 194 (permalink) Old 05-01-2012, 08:58 PM Thread Starter
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

Po,
I want you to picture that scene again and again in your head. She says "I am leaving".

You don't get angry. You don't raise your voice. You don't say "good I want you to leave" - because that will sound angry.

Instead you just reply with one word:
"Ok"

This signifies acceptance. Done well it represents indifference to her. It will produce the most effective response from her.

She may flip out. If she does - get up and quietly leave the room. If she follows you, get your wallet and your phone and get in the car and go stay with a friend or at a hotel. Don't answer your phone when she calls.

This is the only way to "break" this incredibly "her:aggressive/you:fearful and needy" pattern.

Do NOT speak to her in any way when she freaks out. Do not engage. Just leave. NOTHING good will come from a conversation with her when she is melting down. It will make YOU look weak. Again.



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I go off of the journal, she wrote some very personal and painful stuff in the journal, it seems to be the place where she went 100% honest about everything. And yes, I know, detaching, it is hard.

And to address the above post, this is my plan, and I think she knows it, that the next time she drops the "I'm leaving" card, I'm telling her to do so. I'm tired of that being used against me, it is incredibly mean and thoughtless.
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post #125 of 194 (permalink) Old 05-02-2012, 08:08 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

I drove off once and it made things significantly worse. However at the time I was VERY angry... and I had also said some things that were out of line. So perhaps that isn't the best indicator.


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post #126 of 194 (permalink) Old 06-11-2012, 06:51 PM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

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Well I just stumbled onto this site and in particular this thread and it has described my marriage of late to a tee.
I am now trying to deal with a wife who has emotionally quit the marriage and thrown herself into her work and her relationship with her mother.
I tried the 180 techniques a few weeks ago and that made her even colder and accuse me of abandoning her! Perhaps somewhere in between (as these techniques seem to be) is a good approach.
My wife says she loves me and wants to work it out but does nothing to make it better. I did force the issue the other day and say she has to either go to a MC with me or seek professional help herself as her just being distant and no physical contact is not working for me at all and I cannot remain in that sort of relationship. My wife finds it hard to express emotions and even talk candidly about our problems and I am afraid I have let them go ignored for far too many years (as I am sure she has with problems she perceives with me)
We have been married 14 years and together 18, we have to wonderful children 8 & 4 which we both adore and are great parents to but this emotional abandonment is now affecting them as we now are sometimes arguing in front of them.
I am not looking for answers as I know each case is unique (although they all have much similarities) but to discuss it openly with people who have similar situations would be nice.
I didn't see a response to this post, but it's similar to my situation. Wife checked out a long time ago, and when I tried something similar to a 180, I got the same response. She said I'm the one who checked out. And similarly she refuses to talk about our situation at all. Even when I talk in my calmest, most reasonable tones she acts like I'm attacking her.
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post #127 of 194 (permalink) Old 06-12-2012, 08:36 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

i am on month 3 of turning down the temp but the situation was bad long before that. the only benefit i have seen is that the house is on cruise control. i dont have to speak with her much and for that i am already more calm day to day. we only speak about issues related to the kids and anything else having to do with the family. intimacy is gone and done, long discussions with no outcome are done and an ever increasing sense of freedom is creeping in. she would likely say the same thing so this isnt about one-upsmanship. it will be interesting to see how long we can stay in the same house.
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post #128 of 194 (permalink) Old 06-12-2012, 09:52 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

Interesting thread. I've somewhat done this a few times with my checked out W. In my case, with a W who suffers from severe depression/anxiety (and is possibly BPD), it mostly just puts her in a tailspin. I see that a few guys already mentioned it, but be cautious if you attempt this technique with an emotionally unhealthy spouse.
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post #129 of 194 (permalink) Old 06-12-2012, 10:02 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

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Interesting thread. I've somewhat done this a few times with my checked out W. In my case, with a W who suffers from severe depression/anxiety (and is possibly BPD), it mostly just puts her in a tailspin. I see that a few guys already mentioned it, but be cautious if you attempt this technique with an emotionally unhealthy spouse.
After a number of bouts with depression, my wife was recently diagnosed with BP after her first severe manic episode with psychosis. Fortunately she's now on treatment and got stable very quickly. Everyone says you have to create expectations for behavior regardless of her BP. But you also have to allow that the disorder and the medications she has to take will impact her behavior. As I said, the BP diagnosis is a recent thing for us (although her bad behavior isn't). How do you handle this stuff Thunderstruck?
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post #130 of 194 (permalink) Old 06-12-2012, 10:11 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

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How do you handle this stuff Thunderstruck?
My intro link is below.

It's tough, and that's an understatement. At least your W accepted pro help...mine won't. Tons of great advice at this forum...just keep in mind that in your case the normal rules may not apply.

I do agree with your statement about having expectations regardless of her emotional illness. I tried to walk on eggshells for years, and that worked for shyte. I learned how others deal with similar illnesses, what works, what doesn't work. Key is, of course, boundaries. Before I got smart on that, she ran all over me like a freight train.
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post #131 of 194 (permalink) Old 08-25-2012, 07:30 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

this is me and my partner right now. Im the hot one. It never used to be like that she was the hot one and would crack it if I didnt text her all morning whilst at work or said I never just phone her during the day unless were fighting. But now she wants space so she is the cold one and Im smothering her telling her I love her, doing the housework and anything else I can for her. So I know Ive got to stop doing all of that and hopefully she will come around.
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post #132 of 194 (permalink) Old 08-25-2012, 10:28 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

Very interesting read. Many of the warmer features describe me, and I guess the wife is definitely on the cooler side, though she doesn't really pick fights or say no to sex, but perhaps that's because it's still fairly early in our marriage?

Apologies if it's already been covered in the thread, but I've got a few questions.

1. If I become cooler will she become warmer as a result? Or will we both just become 'cool'? I don't think I'd like the latter...

2. If I become cooler in a noticeable way, might it not result in her thinking something is wrong?

3. I have, by my own initiative, tried to cool certain things down such as texting her or initiating kisses etc. But, I can't usually go long without reverting back to myself as she doesn't compensate for me cooling down right away... is sticking to it just a matter of will power or is there something to make it easier?
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post #133 of 194 (permalink) Old 08-25-2012, 10:42 AM Thread Starter
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It is ok to be warmer. It is bad to crowd. It is easy to tell the difference:
- if your partner responds in a consistently happy, loving way to your overtures, keep doing them
- if they are neutral, or worse seem irritated, you should stop doing whatever it is that is causing their reaction

But here's the deal. If you think that the two of you should touch base by text 3 times a dsyb every day, and she does not, when you cut back to zero or one, she is not going to start chasing you.

And if you need that level of reassurance, go to IC
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post #134 of 194 (permalink) Old 08-25-2012, 11:01 AM
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Re: The thermostat - the ultimate barometer of your R

I don't need her to text me everyday 3 times a day or while at work, infact I don't really do that myself anymore, though this was an issue before.

But when she's away (goes to stay with her mum as she has now for example) I do miss her and text her random stuff or at least to say goodnight. She on the other hand can barely be bothered to respond (usually one word replies) and rarely ever initiates a text and calls in a pattern of every 2 days, almost like a routine rather than any real desire to talk.

Now I don't take this personally, she's even worse with her friends in regards to this, and I also get that she's busy catching up with her family who she hardly ever see's anymore, but something to let me know she's thinking of me, even a goodnight text, would be nice,

In terms of her response, I guess it switches between happy and neutral, which I guess suggests I should refrain or cut back from doing what I'm do?
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post #135 of 194 (permalink) Old 08-25-2012, 07:24 PM Thread Starter
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The main driver isn't what happens during the infrequent visits to family. The main driver is what happens during the day to day when you are together. And generally if she is never initiating:
- touch
- time together
- compliments

You will eventually end up in a bad place.
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