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Why don’t you also consider taking up a new artistic hobby you can do at home? Perhaps silversmithing or some painting? You could paint some of your favorite photos you’ve taken over the years.
 

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Discussion Starter #102
Why don’t you also consider taking up a new artistic hobby you can do at home? Perhaps silversmithing or some painting? You could paint some of your favorite photos you’ve taken over the years.
Excellent ideas. Tomorrow, I will paint with my wife. A beginning.

Thanks.
 

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Volunteering in situations where few people are involved like animal shelters might be interesting. Painting is a great idea, but there are a lot of kinds--do some research before you buy supplies or maybe take an online course. Acrylic pouring is currently hot and can be learned progressively on YouTube.

I have contacts in Coronado. There are many Navy related groups--but don't know how COVID has affected them. Do you have any church or group affiliation? Maybe even use yourselves as financial consultants, travel advisors, or marriage advisors. All sorts of online opportunities out there--even landscaping. Hey Ms. Bob4678.
 

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IMO: family history and fairly heavy drinking by Navy cohorts may have eased wife's way into turning to alcohol. Her self-discipline is remarkable.

I love your devotion to family--a great legacy. You might also find interest in online courses related to travel or even grandparent-grandchild relationships. Maybe together write books.
 

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Sometimes @Diana I think you have led a charmed, sheltered life from the way you make comments. Loneliness is not about not having people around you. It is about whether others are actually 'present' in your life. He just said he wasn't 'present,' he was physically there but not for her. Caring for others is a lifetime job of many women, how much caring was she receiving, it seems very little? Maybe she spent years taking care of others needs not her own and no-one else took care of them either. Just because people are there physically does not mean they are actually 'present' in your life and know anything about what is going on with you. People can be married for 30 years and be very lonely because their spouse is there physically but not 'there' for them and knows nothing about what is happening with them or in their life. This is why many men are shocked when their wives up and leave them, they may have been physically there but did not actually 'see' the wife/spouse, etc. It happens. You seem to have this view that as long as a woman is surrounded by her family then she ought not to be lonely which I find quite insensitive on behalf of those in families where they are never 'seen,' but do all and sundry for everyone (I am not talking about me, but I know one or two.) Are they lonely in their families, hell yes!
Haven't seen it this way before, it's usually the women who have children and put their all into the kids and forget they have a husband...when the kids are grown and out so is the forgotten husband who was ignored and alone.
 

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I have answered the questions in the quote. Thanks. Very thought provoking.
There seems to be a lot of emphasis on you looking after the grandchildren and your wife not being as on board with the idea back then.

But, in your reply to my question, you state that the drinking started before the grandchildren.
In fact it sounded more like the move to live nearer your daughter, was a big event, and that may have contributed to the start of the drinking.

Once your wife was drinking, she wouldn't be as into the grandchildren, and would probably try to escape from their demands, and into her own thoughts and feelings.

You have now seen, that your wife when sober, is connecting with them more.

You spending so much time with them back then,might have added to her internal distress, whatever it was/is. But I don't think it is the original cause. Something was amiss already.
 

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As someone upthread mentioned, it's far too often men who get pushed aside by their wives during the child-rearing years. The wife is so wrapped up in doing things with and for the children, putting their needs ahead of everything else, that there's really no room for the husband - or the couple. By the time the kids are grown and gone, the marriage has been neglected for years. She's been so busy being Mom that she forgot to be Wife and Girlfriend and Lover to her husband.

In this case, it's the wife who was pushed aside as the husband poured everything into caring for the grandchildren. And she probably felt neglected, lonely, and forgotten. He was so focused on being Grandpa that he forgot to be Husband and Lover and Friend to his wife.

Neither one is okay. And both can be deadly to a marriage.

Which is why the new insistence on a certain amount of time together may just seem jarring. And a bit tone-deaf. OP, you set the tone for how much alone time your wife should expect in your marriage during the years you were caring full-time for the grandchildren. You've stopped doing that full time, so you expect her to step-to with the increased couple time you're now prepared to allot to her. It is unreasonable to expect that you can ignore someone for years and then have them ask "How high?" when you suddenly turn back to them and shout "Jump!" Which is why your current requests for more couples time may feel less, to her, like a loving relationship ask and more like another helping of thoughtlessness

(By the way, OP, that was the most peculiarly regimented schedule I think I've ever heard. It's clear that you've thought a bit about how your - and your wife's - time "should" be arranged every day. One wonders if there's a timer or bell somewhere to signal change of watch for each new activity. Does your wife get equal say in the level of structure in your day? Is she okay with it, or does it not actually work for her even though you think it should?)

Do get the book His Needs, Her Needs by Willard Harley. You both need to see what a healthy marriage looks like. But, I also strongly recommend his other book, titled Lovebusters. There may be things that you're both doing that are draining the love from your marriage.
 

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Discussion Starter #109 (Edited)
But, in your reply to my question, you state that the drinking started before the grandchildren.
In fact it sounded more like the move to live nearer your daughter, was a big event, and that may have contributed to the start of the drinking.

Once your wife was drinking, she wouldn't be as into the grandchildren, and would probably try to escape from their demands, and into her own thoughts and feelings.

You have now seen, that your wife when sober, is connecting with them more.
We moved to within .08 miles from the grandkids a few years ago. We had lived where we were since 1/2000. It was the house that we raised our kids in for their 5th through 12th grade and into their college years. But, we were not involved with the community that at all as that was our traveling years and it was hard to find like couples if our age. We did use the clubhouse, spa and exercise room a lot during those years.

i do remember her mentioning to me when she made her amends that she thought she resented me for the move. She was not able to articulate why. This house is in a much better area in regards to privacy, traffic, safety and became worse after we left because they put in a major restaurant a few years after we left two blocks from the house.

She indicated her drinking of beer started being heavy after we moved. Granddaughter came around about 14 months later. She believes that she started drinking straight vodka shortly after she was born. She used vodka because she could slip out the side door, drink a bottle of vodka and head up stairs without me knowing. When I mentioned alcohol smell a couple of times, she would blame it on mouthwash. She went to rehab in Sept 2019, about three years later.

Did the resentment and beer lead into vodka? Did she have a premonition of what was to unfold and knew of the upcoming problems? Was she aware that we would need to curtail our traveling due to grandkid? Btw, we didn’t curtail.

We are going for our four hour drive this morning and will be taking this thread with us to discuss.

Thanks for your continued input. We are in a much better place than we were just two days ago.
 

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Discussion Starter #110
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In this case, it's the wife who was pushed aside as the husband poured everything into caring for the grandchildren. And she probably felt neglected, lonely, and forgotten. He was so focused on being Grandpa that he forgot to be Husband and Lover and Friend to his wife.

Do get the book His Needs, Her Needs by Willard Harley. You both need to see what a healthy marriage looks like. But, I also strongly recommend his other book, titled Lovebusters. There may be things that you're both doing that are draining the love from your marriage.
i deserted her and she fell into vodka. I do believe that it was my doing as she has never drank vodka or any hard liquor. Her social drinking for 35ish years was beer and wine. I cannot believe that I missed three years of drinking. I was blind.

The last three posts have been excellent as they seemed to have encapsulated the why. We will be discussing the thread on our drive today.

The schedule of time is something that we have been working on since her return from rehab. Maybe, I was too controlling. Each morning, I would plan the day for her to do her exercise followed by bath followed by private time and couple time. I would ask her in the morning about drives, together time or private time and she would advise what she preferred. We would go with that and, many days, I would be left watching movies or being on the Internet. The time apart grew as her pursuits grew. This probably caused unconscious resentment in me and around we go.

Thanks so much.
 

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Hi to Wife!!

We’re here to help. If you would like to join and talk to us directly, we’d love to talk to you. If not, we’re always interested in your thoughts regardless of how we get them (we rarely get both sides of a story).

Many threads here deal with infidelity but some are just about missteps in a marriage and getting back on track. I recommend sticking around and posting on other threads. I look at TAM as my version of volunteering 😉.
 

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OP, please go through your thread and delete every reference that can identify you and your wife for anonymity purposes. Luckily for you, I'm on my meds today so won't be making that 20-25 minute drive to your front door. Seriously, you never know what some deranged person will do with your private data.

Are you talking about Phil's B'BQ?
 

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OP, please go through your thread and delete every reference that can identify you and your wife for anonymity purposes. Luckily for you, I'm on my meds today so won't be making that 20-25 minute drive to your front door. Seriously, you never know what some deranged person will do with your private data.

Are you talking about Phil's B'BQ?
I couldn’t find the Price is Right video anyways


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

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So if you live in a country that has high house prices and rents and the cost of child care is high, no one should have children? People are waiting far later than they used to to have children, but still often struggle to manage. To just declare that they shouldnt have ever have had children is rather c drastic. Many grandparents love to help out anyway, that relationship between grandparents and their grandchildren is so very special. Plus it keeps them young which is a big plus.
An interesting question and one that no doubt people will use the human rights violation argument for. IMO if you can not afford kids you should not have them and then expect the state, your parents etc to take care of them. I would like to have at least 4 kids but could not afford to educate so many so stopped at 2. We live in a country with no welfare system. You don’t work, you starve, simple. So we worked to give our 2 kids a good start in life. i know someone who had 6 kids from 2 fathers and is struggling to take care of them. I’m sorry I have no sympathy for that. One must take responsibility for ones actions and decisions and not expect others to take up the slack for your decisions.
 

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I would honestly run if my partner had a schedule for our time together. Give the woman a break and find something to occupy your time. And nothing is wrong with watching your grandchildren. Your life, your choice.
I agree with this, so regimented, like fitting in the most important person into a schedule. maybe it’s a Navy thing. Why should she be available according to YOUR schedule? What about her schedule and needs? If you give 2 hrs per day that is only 14 per week, the bare minimum according to some marriage gurus. When would she and you sleep?
I think there is a deeper problem here. I also note that you are looking for solutions but basically disagree ( in a nice way) with anything people say here.
Are you usually this regimental with everything, people cannot be fitted into a box, are you really this intense, maybe that’s the problem.
 

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THe first thing I would want to hear about is what kind of conversations you've had with your wife about this. Have you acknowledged to her that didn't realize how much energy you had diverted from your relationship? Have you apologized for it? Have you asked her exactly how that wounded her, and exactly what she needs from you to heal that wound? I presume that she still loves you, because why would she stay. But asking her for specific and intentional information about how you can fit into her now new life would be a great start. The most courageous thing we can do is ask for what we need. The 2nd is asking others what they need from us.
 

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Discussion Starter #120
It is hard to come back to this thread after the last week.

For those who complained about the regimen, you were right. I abandoned that last week.

For those that saw value in my wife and me reading the book about marriage, no interest on her part.

For those who, basically, told me to get a life. I will move forward to the best of my ability during Covid-19.

End result right now is we are like “ships passing in the night” for all but three hours of cuddling time in the morning and when our grandkids come to visit. That is about 2 - 3 times a week for four hours and, maybe, a stay over from 3:00 p.m. to 10:00 a.m. which we did this past Saturday. I am thankful for my time with her as she has my heart.

I find these sayings comforting: “It is what it is”, “Take it hour by hour, day by day”, “This too will pass”, “Be all that you can be”, and “Don’t worry, be happy.”

I, daily and more, find comfort in praying the Serenity Prayer, The Lord’s Prayer and The Lord is My Shepherd, Psalm 23.

I am in pain.

Thank you ALL for your input and help. It has helped to a point and, also, hurt to a point. Not by your thoughts but by the clarity with which I have learned things about myself. Very enlightening input.

Thanks again for your input.
 
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