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For those of us that have already lived this ... the information comes as no surprise and far too little, far too late.

Infidelity, Cheating Wives - Women's Infidelity

My gripe about this stuff is that it's all post-mortem. Nobody feels much like reflecting on "What the hell happened?" until the bomb has already gone off and the field is strewn with body parts.

There are a number of excellent contributors to the male side of the equation on this board that provide input and insight about keeping your woman from looking elsewhere. It is valuable information.

However, invariably it will always still come down to having two people that desire to serve the relationship and/or marriage. If one of them simply surrenders - it needn't and shouldn't be incumbent upon the devoted spouse to figure it all out, nor take responsibility for their partner's infidelity.

I know exactly why my wife cheated - and it is absolutely in alignment with the stages that Ms. Langley points out. Had I adopted more of the traits to maintain an equilibrium of attraction and balance in our relationship at the outset - this is what I know ... we would never have gotten married. Can't say that I would have been ok with that outcome either.

Don't think I'd buy the book, but I found it somewhat gratifying that a woman was interested enough in the factors behind her own infidelity to look for reasons deeper than 'my husband made me do it.'.

I have been doing a great deal of research on this topic. My own post mortem. I'm still in the process of cleaning up the body parts.
 

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Hey, Deejo,

I'm sorry for your pain. I am also cleaning up the bodies.
I skimmed through the ad for the book on the site you linked to.
What I don't get is why it is so shocking to everyone that women have affairs, too. It seems like simple math to me.. if 50 guys in 100 are doing it.. they can't all be gay... and if each has 1 partner, then close to 50 women must doing it too, right?

What I'm learning is that everyone has the potential to do it, despite our tenacious desire to believe "not me," "not her," or "not him."

After being so wounded by my stbx, I have a tendency to demonize all men, but then I remind myself that there are men who don't cheat. Because, like me, they hold the covenant of marriage sacred, and would leave it honestly before defiling it.

So, I'm in a place where I don't see myself ever trusting another individual with my emotional well-being again. I hope to find someday I was wrong about this, but I just don't see it at this point.

Meanwhile, people are going to do what they are going to do. Men and women both. ESPECIALLY the ones we don't expect. (The others..well, their reputations sometimes precede them, and their SOs are more wary..they actually get away with less.

Good luck mending yourself. Keep hope that not all women or men are bad. It's just hard as hell to know the difference.
 

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Deejo,

Good luck healing. I really think cheating men and women run 50/50. I try hard not to make generalizations about "all men" now. I find myself doing that much less, so my outlook on life in general must be improving. However, I'll probably always be a little "gun shy" when it comes to future relationships. None of us ever won't to endure the pain caused by a cheating spouse again. I honestly don't think I could go through the ordeal again!
 

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I read this awhile ago too.

I would have figured a 50/50 split, but I always pictured the men as being the initiators when it comes to infidelity. That somehow unfaithful women were mostly "seduced" by unsurly men.

But this site has opened my eyes to the idea that a woman doesn't need to be seduced to look for attention outside of her marriage.
 

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Deejo,
Why do you say "if I had adopted more of the traits ..." we never would have gotten married?

For those of us that have already lived this ... the information comes as no surprise and far too little, far too late.

Infidelity, Cheating Wives - Women's Infidelity

My gripe about this stuff is that it's all post-mortem. Nobody feels much like reflecting on "What the hell happened?" until the bomb has already gone off and the field is strewn with body parts.

There are a number of excellent contributors to the male side of the equation on this board that provide input and insight about keeping your woman from looking elsewhere. It is valuable information.

However, invariably it will always still come down to having two people that desire to serve the relationship and/or marriage. If one of them simply surrenders - it needn't and shouldn't be incumbent upon the devoted spouse to figure it all out, nor take responsibility for their partner's infidelity.

I know exactly why my wife cheated - and it is absolutely in alignment with the stages that Ms. Langley points out. Had I adopted more of the traits to maintain an equilibrium of attraction and balance in our relationship at the outset - this is what I know ... we would never have gotten married. Can't say that I would have been ok with that outcome either.

Don't think I'd buy the book, but I found it somewhat gratifying that a woman was interested enough in the factors behind her own infidelity to look for reasons deeper than 'my husband made me do it.'.

I have been doing a great deal of research on this topic. My own post mortem. I'm still in the process of cleaning up the body parts.
 

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MEM - Don't want to speak for Deejo, but in my case I thought my wife married me because I was sensitive, caring, good sense of humor, etc. Had I been a bit more selfish, assertive, less sensitive (things I'm trying to learn to do now) then we likely would have taken different paths and never married each other.
 

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This fits my scenario "perfectly"...Wife tells me to get out if I want to have any chance of saving the 15-year marriage...indicates don't get your hopes up...needs her space...and doesn't want to pursue couples therapy.

She's just gonna do "deep therapy" on herself...this was 5 weeks ago...I asked her this week where she stood and stated the same place...she said enough to indicate she indeed has a lover...

I said enough is enough...told her we need to see a financial mediator and get our divorce rolling...this is the second time for both of us and tremendously painful...but I deserve a helluva lot better...

Unfortunately, we men are suckers...we never see this "cheating" aspect of women...and it is everywhere after talking with many of my friends and colleagues...

Our 4 twenty-something sons (2 his/2 hers) are pretty blown away...the family they came to love and find comfort in is being blown apart...yes, body parts everywhere...

Here's to moving on...
 

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NG,
I believe you do need to be sensitive and caring and have a good sense of humor. This is not about that. Because remember - before marriage she was nice BACK. What this is about is how men react when our female partners begin to conduct male "fitness tests" by pushing our boundaries. What would have happened if you had firmly addressed your W's texting behavior when it first started?

I believe women react badly to hearing that something makes you feel bad "after you have already told them once or twice". The first time is key because now they "know" and it is no longer a communication issue it is now a question of whether or not she is going to prioritize your need. I do believe many women respond better to action than words. And the ultimate male behavior women respond most strongly to is NOT anger - it is indifference. They are exceptionally aware of what indifference means to the power dynamic in a relationship. Guys - we aren't ALLOWED to use our physical strength advantage in a relationship which I personally think is a great improvement over historical "rules of engagement". Unless it is an extreme case and she is directly harming your children, highly emotional / verbalized extreme ANGER just conveys: The desperate hurt of a man whose love is overpowering his self control. Big step back. The calm determined mode of "if you do X, I am reluctantly going to have no choice but to do Y" works very well but you have to have the determination to follow through.

For example - I absolutely go into "limited communication" mode when I feel a boundary has been violated. And I don't come out until I get an explanation that makes sense or an apology. And not a "non" apology. I don't respond well to "I am sorry that upset you". Just as I apologize when I am wrong - which is a little bit more than 50 percent of the time :). Limited communication is simple, requires no particular verbal skills - it DOES require a willingness to have conflict and to allow conflict to persist and sometimes escalate.

And the one time in our marriage she said she needed "space" I started scheduling long weekend visits with friends and family and began to steadily ramp that up until I heard the magic words "I miss you".

If you asked my W to predict my future marital behavior she would say: "Treated fairly he will NEVER leave and NEVER cheat", "Treated badly - he will either openly take a lover or flat out leave depending on the specifics of the situation".

I would loosely say the same thing in reverse with the exception being that instead of taking a lover I imagine she would simply focus on making my life a non-stop living hell if she felt very badly treated. And if THAT didn't work THEN she would leave me.

NG,
In this context - you cannot have daily communication with someone/text them "goodnight" every night when they are having an open ended series of EA's and ever hope to effectively convey indifference.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>
"I am the product of thousands of generations of successful male ancestors. When necessary they were totally determined and utterly ruthless. I see no reason to alter a behavioral pattern that has worked so well for so long."



MEM - Don't want to speak for Deejo, but in my case I thought my wife married me because I was sensitive, caring, good sense of humor, etc. Had I been a bit more selfish, assertive, less sensitive (things I'm trying to learn to do now) then we likely would have taken different paths and never married each other.
 

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MEM,

I'm going to ask you to go along with me for a moment. And in no way is my intention to minimize or marginalize your excellent input.

I have news for you ... your wife is cheating on you. She plays perfect wife, knows the in's and the out's of your relationship. Knows how to stroke your ego, and keep the peace. Everything in your marriage looks great. Except ... she is also f*cking another dude.

I know, seems impossible, right? I didn't believe it either. Most guys don't nor do they want to. But it is mundane. Downright common. Happens every single day. Whether we are honoring them or neglecting them - our wives are climbing aboard and doing the reverse cowgirl not with an Antonio Banderas wannabe, but with Al the Butcher from the Brady Bunch.

If you made that discovery tomorrow, based upon what you know of your relationship right now ... what would your presumption be?

Would you believe that you 'missed' something in meeting her needs?

Or would you lean towards your wife has gone off her friggin rocker and you have little to no idea as to why?

My point is, that when you are in it and engaged, you generally do believe you are doing everything right. And when it comes down to it, you can be doing just about everything right - and still fail.

I'm not throwing my hands in the air and screaming at the heavens and stomping my feet.
I am making the calculated acknowledgment that nobody is safe - ever; particularly if you stop doing the work - or never acknowledge that it requires tremendous work in the first place.

Ms. Langley's contribution also buttresses that little gem. If your wife decides to take that mental stroll where she questions the arc of happiness, fulfillment, challenge, success, (insert point of life introspection here) - and associates you as a minus rather than a plus in that evaluation, rightly or wrongly, your relationship has just been put at risk.

So, in that regard, I completely agree with your strategy and much appreciated advice that behaving in a way that lends to, or assures her giving you a 'plus' is the way to go.

All I'm saying is sometimes the calculator is broken.

To answer your question; I wouldn't have gotten married because I would have acknowledged that her deficits in communication and self-awareness were glaring - and not my job to fix. But I took it on, I liked the challenge of breaking down her walls - and she in turn loved me for doing it. I didn't realize that the walls would keep going back up.

Eventually, I became part of the mortar for the walls instead of the wrecking ball.
 

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Deejo,
My ultimate litmus test of where my W's head is at has to do with our sex life. Sorry - but that is a fairly objective measure of how "into you" a woman is. If she is into YOU, she really wants you to be into HER emotionally and the strongest emo glue to use with a man is frequent - good/great sex.

So since we are in the world of total transparency I will share a strange but completely true sequence with you.

Our sex life always ranged from good to great. At times when we were younger and I literally demanded pretty damn near daily sex we had tension - but she wanted to make it all work so she made the effort.

So about 4-5 years ago I was on meds which took the edge of my personality, and then I also stopped lifting, became skinny and our sex life did suffer. Her desire for me dropped in a fairly obvious way. She still made it fun for me, but I could tell her attraction level was seriously impacted - and that sucked. So I made the effort - bulked back up to my normal size which is moderately muscled - I am by no means a steroidal monkey and have never touched a steroid in my life.

So my body get back to "normal" and my aggression levels rose - which she also likes and like magic her desire rebounded.
So everything was good for a couple years and THEN we hired this new guy at the little business we run - well actually she runs it. Nice looking guy, fun to be around. I was doing my normal tech consulting at the time but every week or two I would work a day at our business so I saw the two of them together. I could see there was some chemistry but what the hell - I trust her. And besides I wasn't going to ask her to fire someone because I was insecure. So I just ignored the situation. Over the next couple months she started this whole new routine in bed. More frequent - and starting out with this full body sexualized massage that honestly was even better than the "treatment" I get in Asia when the girls are hoping to get you turned on so you will buy the "happy ending".

And you know - I figured this had to do with some redirected passion. Meaning she was taking her "desire" for him and applying it to me. Thing is - it was like a drug - it was that good. So I just went with the flow - and about a year later she told me that she had gotten a crush on this guy - hey she has nice taste, hell I like the guy. And she went to talk to her priest and he told her that the church needed strong marriages and she took that to mean she should make more of an effort to show her commitment to ME even though she was feeling some desire for him. Anyway when she told me all that I just laughed and said "I trust you - and I just didn't think you would go there so I never worried about it. Well that is not totally true - I upped my "game" a bit during that time but in a gradual way so as to not be obvious.

I don't know what I would have done if she cheated. Probably felt sorry for her knowing how bad she would have felt. I doubt I would have left her. She has given me 21 great years.

If she had started sexually starving me well that would have been a whole different story. As that would have meant she wasn't that into ME. And that would have gotten addressed fast and hard. And resolved in a way I was fully satisfied with. Which might have meant me openly taking a lover. I am not going to be sexually starved and treated as if I have no choice in the matter by the one person in my life who I give 100 percent to.

That is the closest we have come to the edge. FWIW - I don't consider this an EA since they never got into the texting/calling and to my knowledge never blatantly flirted. I think she simply fell for him. Chemistry is not controllable - behavior is.
MEM,

I'm going to ask you to go along with me for a moment. And in no way is my intention to minimize or marginalize your excellent input.

I have news for you ... your wife is cheating on you. She plays perfect wife, knows the in's and the out's of your relationship. Knows how to stroke your ego, and keep the peace. Everything in your marriage looks great. Except ... she is also f*cking another dude.

I know, seems impossible, right? I didn't believe it either. Most guys don't nor do they want to. But it is mundane. Downright common. Happens every single day. Whether we are honoring them or neglecting them - our wives are climbing aboard and doing the reverse cowgirl not with an Antonio Banderas wannabe, but with Al the Butcher from the Brady Bunch.

If you made that discovery tomorrow, based upon what you know of your relationship right now ... what would your presumption be?

Would you believe that you 'missed' something in meeting her needs?

Or would you lean towards your wife has gone off her friggin rocker and you have little to no idea as to why?

My point is, that when you are in it and engaged, you generally do believe you are doing everything right. And when it comes down to it, you can be doing just about everything right - and still fail.

I'm not throwing my hands in the air and screaming at the heavens and stomping my feet.
I am making the calculated acknowledgment that nobody is safe - ever; particularly if you stop doing the work - or never acknowledge that it requires tremendous work in the first place.

Ms. Langley's contribution also buttresses that little gem. If your wife decides to take that mental stroll where she questions the arc of happiness, fulfillment, challenge, success, (insert point of life introspection here) - and associates you as a minus rather than a plus in that evaluation, rightly or wrongly, your relationship has just been put at risk.

So, in that regard, I completely agree with your strategy and much appreciated advice that behaving in a way that lends to, or assures her giving you a 'plus' is the way to go.

All I'm saying is sometimes the calculator is broken.

To answer your question; I wouldn't have gotten married because I would have acknowledged that her deficits in communication and self-awareness were glaring - and not my job to fix. But I took it on, I liked the challenge of breaking down her walls - and she in turn loved me for doing it. I didn't realize that the walls would keep going back up.

Eventually, I became part of the mortar for the walls instead of the wrecking ball.
 

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Note the whole theme of Langley's article. It ALL starts with a loss of desire. And THAT is why I pay so much attention to THAT. From your prior posts - your W had some serious desire issues from before you had kids. Ultimately I reverse engineer my communication "self rating". It goes like this - the more "in love/passionate" she is with me, the better overall job I am doing. The less in love / passionate she is, the worse my overall job. So back to my prior story.

At the time her desire mostly crashed and she kept having sex with me because she was committed to me and the marriage and she loved me enough to make the effort DESPITE the lack of passion - the two key drivers were:
- muscle mass and
- aggression level

Think about that. I was actually EASIER to get along with. I didn't have that somewhat combative edge that is my normal state. Our communication per-se was exactly the same. But the 10% of the relationship that is fired by Alpha behavior was completely fuvked.

I totally believe that sex is 10 percent of the relationship when it is good and 90 percent when it goes bad.

And I absolutely believe the corollary to that is that your Alpha behavior is 10 percent of the relationship when you are doing it right and it BECOMES 90 PERCENT of the relationship when you are doing it poorly or not at all.

Lose your Alpha, lose your Wife. Even if she isn't fuvking someone else, she likely isn't fuvking you - or if she is she is doing so as little as possible.



MEM,

I'm going to ask you to go along with me for a moment. And in no way is my intention to minimize or marginalize your excellent input.

I have news for you ... your wife is cheating on you. She plays perfect wife, knows the in's and the out's of your relationship. Knows how to stroke your ego, and keep the peace. Everything in your marriage looks great. Except ... she is also f*cking another dude.

I know, seems impossible, right? I didn't believe it either. Most guys don't nor do they want to. But it is mundane. Downright common. Happens every single day. Whether we are honoring them or neglecting them - our wives are climbing aboard and doing the reverse cowgirl not with an Antonio Banderas wannabe, but with Al the Butcher from the Brady Bunch.

If you made that discovery tomorrow, based upon what you know of your relationship right now ... what would your presumption be?

Would you believe that you 'missed' something in meeting her needs?

Or would you lean towards your wife has gone off her friggin rocker and you have little to no idea as to why?

My point is, that when you are in it and engaged, you generally do believe you are doing everything right. And when it comes down to it, you can be doing just about everything right - and still fail.

I'm not throwing my hands in the air and screaming at the heavens and stomping my feet.
I am making the calculated acknowledgment that nobody is safe - ever; particularly if you stop doing the work - or never acknowledge that it requires tremendous work in the first place.

Ms. Langley's contribution also buttresses that little gem. If your wife decides to take that mental stroll where she questions the arc of happiness, fulfillment, challenge, success, (insert point of life introspection here) - and associates you as a minus rather than a plus in that evaluation, rightly or wrongly, your relationship has just been put at risk.

So, in that regard, I completely agree with your strategy and much appreciated advice that behaving in a way that lends to, or assures her giving you a 'plus' is the way to go.

All I'm saying is sometimes the calculator is broken.

To answer your question; I wouldn't have gotten married because I would have acknowledged that her deficits in communication and self-awareness were glaring - and not my job to fix. But I took it on, I liked the challenge of breaking down her walls - and she in turn loved me for doing it. I didn't realize that the walls would keep going back up.

Eventually, I became part of the mortar for the walls instead of the wrecking ball.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
From your prior posts - your W had some serious desire issues from before you had kids. Ultimately I reverse engineer my communication "self rating". It goes like this - the more "in love/passionate" she is with me, the better overall job I am doing. The less in love / passionate she is, the worse my overall job.
Which is exactly why I say had I 'upped my Alpha' we never would have gotten married. That isn't meant to be a statement of surrender, that had I stood up for myself she would have dumped me. Had I upped my alpha - I wouldn't have accepted her as a partner.

I wasn't a pushover. Mistakenly, I started dialing back expectations and boundaries as a result of being familiar with her issues instead of dialing them up. Did she appreciate it? Sure she did. But at this point, you are preaching to the choir on the issue of desire. I am fully aware that being devoted, accommodating, and consistently going the distance to please your partner *to the point of sacrificing your own terms and boundaries* is a desire killer - regardless if you are male or female.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
I think a woman who is having sex, and enjoying it, with her husband on a very regular basis, and I mean 4 or more times a week, would hardly have the desire to go elsewhere.
Not true. There is a case here on these boards of a guy with a high drive wife (they were greater than 4x /week) that the very night he turned her down because he was tired, went out to a bar and hooked up - and blamed her husband for not meeting her needs. If I can find the thread, I'll post the link. So once again, do we presume this chick had some issues, or that hubby just wasn't cutting it? Do you see where I'm going here?

It would be great to get to cut and dry. This works. That doesn't. This is healthy. That isn't. This will give you a happy wife and get you laid. That will earn you resentment and no sex.

It just isn't ever going to be that simple or straightforward. It may be for some, and they have nothing but my heart-felt congratulations and envy. But the reality is that most of us - both men and women 'feel' like we have it right, out of the gate. And it may feel right for a very long time. But those feelings change over time and we do not adjust accordingly - and suddenly what used to work and felt right, just doesn't any more. Or, we know there are issues that stand as road-blocks, but given our emotional investment we choose to work around, or overlook those issues in our partner.

I'm not looking to make excuses, or marginalize methods that contribute to maintaining happy, healthy, sexed-up marriages. If anything, I am decrying that these things are not taught, nor is there a relationship proficiency exam required before you walk down the aisle and make vows to a partner for a lifetime - and invariably fall far short of those vows or coming anywhere near to a lifetime.

I'm all for 'Gaming'. It works. I have used it. I get it. It is undoubtedly a tool to be used with wisdom, especially in a LTR. But it isn't a magic bullet. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. Mileage varies. I have been in sexual relationships twice following the separation with my wife. Both of which I pulled the plug on, based on circumstances or plain old chemistry. I have been on a number of dates.

Knowing my spouse as I do. Do you know what I think relationship model is the one that would keep her fire lit?

An affair.

It is forbidden. It is exciting. It inherently comes with a degree of guilt, shame, joy, and euphoria. It isn't real. It is grounded in selfish fantasy. Those are the feelings that are mixed up in her coupling chemistry, and historically the relationships she chose to pursue fit that model - myself included.

I knew all this, and I chose her anyway. And your Goddamn right it made for a helluva ride - in a good way. But part of the plan was also to build a future and raise kids together. That meant mundane routine, responsibility, hard work, sacrifice, and meeting expectations. We couldn't reconcile those two worlds.
And neither can many couples that have circumstances looking nothing like mine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
As I indicated, in an earlier response to breeze about women having frequent sex with their husbands not wanting or needing to look elsewhere - I give you:

My Wife Wants Sex All The Time

Sometimes this stuff is just too painful and weird to even conceptualize. This example pretty much kills the bell curve.

Moral of the story folks? Men cheat. Women cheat. The men and women that you suspect would never cheat ... cheat. If you were to ask my wife why she cheated, she would tell you it is because she believed I was cheating. Neither gender can claim the high ground.

I have been reading "COMMITTED: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage" by Elizabeth Gilbert. The very same lady currently being portrayed by Julia Roberts in "Eat, Pray, Love", co-starring Anton Shigur as her lover in a theater near you.

The lady has a great writing style, and I highly recommend the book.

She dedicates an entire section examining that once we (Western Culture) prioritized personal happiness as grounds and a requirement for a successful marriage, we by default assured that the divorce rate would sky rocket. She contrasts cultures where the entire perspective of marriage is not based off of happiness of the individuals, but more a sense of service - the greater good - the community - a contract, what have you.

She distinctly talks about the intoxicating stage of infatuation, versus the grounded steadiness of mature love - and as we have been discussing - stress, vulnerability, or dissatisfaction can easily set one up to project the fantasy of happiness, leading to infatuation on someone other than our spouse.

I am paraphrasing and simplifying but it makes for a great read.
 

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Deejo,
I enjoy your writing, you have and are developing more wisdom. But to what purpose. Do you know?

Me I’m in the middle of ending a 42 year love affair with my wife. I’ve had my fair share of pain and heartache but I’ve also had more than my fair share of joy and happiness. I’ve experienced bliss. Some of the stories I read on here are heartbreaking. I wonder why some Men tolerate such things. I know I did and I wonder why. If I were to take a guess my answer would be that’s life. That's love. And love and life is a wonderful thing.

Bob
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Deejo,
I enjoy your writing, you have and are developing more wisdom. But to what purpose. Do you know?

Bob
Best answer I can give right now, Bob, is coming to terms with accepting there is the way I thought the world was meant to be, and there is the way it is. It's taking some getting used to.

I think I'm hardwired for monogamy - and I don't have a problem with that. I don't fall in love easily. It has happened 3 times in my life. Each successive love filled the gap of her predecessor, until new love came along I had; I have, a hard time letting go of the woman I do love, even if the relationship has been over for some time. There were plenty of women in between. None of them effected me like the big 3. I only married one of them. I wanted to remain married - but not at any cost. In then end, I'm saddened by the fact that her cost of sacrificing the marriage was much lower than mine.

Awaiting number 4. In the meantime I accept that #3 will occasionally pull on my heart strings.
 

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Deejo, it goes without saying thinks me that it’s not possible to understand other people. Our mind is not in their body. I’ve had a problem understanding myself but I’m getting there by degrees.

What do you think about acceptance without understanding? How would you feel about accepting without understanding?

Bob
 
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