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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was reading thru my old journals last night and every few pages we are in some sort of fight. It seems we have both been rather unhappy with each other for about the last 5 years.
I want us to go to MC and IC so we can fix ourselves and hopefully our marriage.
He seems content with the status quo and is convinced the MC will just pin all the blame (fo
r my problems w/ him which he claims are all in my head) on him and has no beliefs/trust that is would go otherwise.
I plan on doing everything I can to save this marriage. I am just hoping I can find a ***** in his armor of ambivalence and convince him to get off his butt and do his part of the work to save our marriage.
Not holding my breath.

Any suggestions on how to motivate him?
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
The last sentence didn't post. What I meant to end with was:
"Or am I deluding myself?"
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Lily,

First let me say that I do not believe that any marriage is beyond fixing if both parties want to work on it.

Having said that what are the problems in the marriage? What are the fights about? Maybe there are issues that you feel are important but your husband doesn't see things the same way you do. Maybe he may even sympathize to a certain extent but feel that he has no power to fix the issues. Can you elaborate a little more?

BTW, if you read some of the threads on TAM you will see that your husband's fears are not unfounded. There are many counselors out there that end up causing more harm than good. For example, a friend of my wife went to IC because she said she was unhappy. The counselor she saw continually stressed that she was codependent and needed to detach from her husband. Well, she detached so much that she ended up divorcing him. Several years later she admits that it was the worst decision she ever made and he really was a good man and good husband. Too late as he has moved on and remarried. She blames her counselor for her divorce but while I agree her counselor was a major contributor she was the one that chose to follow the advice. Just food for thought.
 

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You said the magic words.. IF BOTH PARTIES WANT TO WORK ON IT. My husband has told me he is not going to counseling... he does not feel anything is wrong. Lily, I am like you.. I want to try whatever I can but it does take two. You can't do it alone.



Lily,

First let me say that I do not believe that any marriage is beyond fixing if both parties want to work on it.

Having said that what are the problems in the marriage? What are the fights about? Maybe there are issues that you feel are important but your husband doesn't see things the same way you do. Maybe he may even sympathize to a certain extent but feel that he has no power to fix the issues. Can you elaborate a little more?

BTW, if you read some of the threads on TAM you will see that your husband's fears are not unfounded. There are many counselors out there that end up causing more harm than good. For example, a friend of my wife went to IC because she said she was unhappy. The counselor she saw continually stressed that she was codependent and needed to detach from her husband. Well, she detached so much that she ended up divorcing him. Several years later she admits that it was the worst decision she ever made and he really was a good man and good husband. Too late as he has moved on and remarried. She blames her counselor for her divorce but while I agree her counselor was a major contributor she was the one that chose to follow the advice. Just food for thought.
 

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It all depends on what you want. Do both people want to be together? Was there love and attraction from both sides in the beginning? Was there a major event or just the little things that pile up over time? All of this matters. If you want to be with your spouse, you can find a way to make it happen.
 

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I logged in and read the very same post I wanted to post tonight. My husband's and my relationship has been on a steady decline in the last year. After a major blow up on my husband's part (I had NO idea why he was acting the way he was) and then a subsequent 3 days of stonewalling I have been forcing us to talk about where we go from here and feel l like I'm banging my head on the wall. We were in marriage counseling prior to getting married but it ended up being a disaster and no my husband is refusing to return even now when we need it most. I told my husband I am not ready to give up on us just yet, but he claims to be impartial on whether we stay married or not. Tonight he admitted to me that he is not willing to take a leap of faith and allow me to correct the very ugly image of me he has painted, and that even when he says "Show ME" he doesn't really believe I will. How do I convince him that I'm worth fighting for?
 

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I logged in and read the very same post I wanted to post tonight. My husband's and my relationship has been on a steady decline in the last year. After a major blow up on my husband's part (I had NO idea why he was acting the way he was) and then a subsequent 3 days of stonewalling I have been forcing us to talk about where we go from here and feel l like I'm banging my head on the wall. We were in marriage counseling prior to getting married but it ended up being a disaster and no my husband is refusing to return even now when we need it most. I told my husband I am not ready to give up on us just yet, but he claims to be impartial on whether we stay married or not. Tonight he admitted to me that he is not willing to take a leap of faith and allow me to correct the very ugly image of me he has painted, and that even when he says "Show ME" he doesn't really believe I will. How do I convince him that I'm worth fighting for?
What is the ugly image he has of you? What are the things that you need to correct? It really depends on the circumstances. If you cheated on him that can often be a dealbreaker for many people. They can't overcome the betrayal. If its something esle then what exactly are the issues?
 

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What is the ugly image he has of you? What are the things that you need to correct? It really depends on the circumstances. If you cheated on him that can often be a dealbreaker for many people. They can't overcome the betrayal. If its something esle then what exactly are the issues?
I have never, nor WOULD I cheat on my husband. My husband states that I am not there for him in any capacity. He can not talk to me about anything, he is not able to rely on my to do things for him etc. At one time he stated I've been that way from the beginning of our relationship, other times he is not able to give me examples of what has shown that I am those things, or there have been times that he's given 1 example and made it seem like if that's happened once then it will always happen. In few words recently he said I bring nothing to his life, that if he can't do something himself he goes to his friends.
 

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I have never, nor WOULD I cheat on my husband. My husband states that I am not there for him in any capacity. He can not talk to me about anything, he is not able to rely on my to do things for him etc. At one time he stated I've been that way from the beginning of our relationship, other times he is not able to give me examples of what has shown that I am those things, or there have been times that he's given 1 example and made it seem like if that's happened once then it will always happen. In few words recently he said I bring nothing to his life, that if he can't do something himself he goes to his friends.
If he feels that you aren't there for him in various capacities maybe you aren't? Now before you get upset let me explain. You might be communicating to him in a way you understand but he doesn't hear your message. You might be doing things for him but not the things he really appreciates. For example, my wife appreciates when I do the laundry for her or make dinner once in a while. She likes it when I get her gifts for no reason. She appreciates it when I compliment her. But she goes absolutely GAGA when I sit down with her and just talk. Her love language is quality time and her most important need is conversation. So by making sure I am there for her when she needs to talk or by initiating conversations with her frequently I fulfill her most important need and I do it in a way that she understands because it is her love language. Maybe you and your husband aren't communicating in a way that you both can understand and quite possibly you aren't fulfilling his most important needs and maybe he isn't fulfilling yours. Does this make any sense?
 

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If he feels that you aren't there for him in various capacities maybe you aren't? Now before you get upset let me explain. You might be communicating to him in a way you understand but he doesn't hear your message. You might be doing things for him but not the things he really appreciates. For example, my wife appreciates when I do the laundry for her or make dinner once in a while. She likes it when I get her gifts for no reason. She appreciates it when I compliment her. But she goes absolutely GAGA when I sit down with her and just talk. Her love language is quality time and her most important need is conversation. So by making sure I am there for her when she needs to talk or by initiating conversations with her frequently I fulfill her most important need and I do it in a way that she understands because it is her love language. Maybe you and your husband aren't communicating in a way that you both can understand and quite possibly you aren't fulfilling his most important needs and maybe he isn't fulfilling yours. Does this make any sense?
It makes total sense and it's something I'm actually aware of, it's part of the problem in our relationship, neither one of us seems to know how to speak each other's love language. When I've point blank asked him what I could do to "speak his language" he talks in generalities, or gives me an "I Don't Know" If he doesn't know what he wants, how am I supposed to?
 

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It makes total sense and it's something I'm actually aware of, it's part of the problem in our relationship, neither one of us seems to know how to speak each other's love language. When I've point blank asked him what I could do to "speak his language" he talks in generalities, or gives me an "I Don't Know" If he doesn't know what he wants, how am I supposed to?
Have you both read The Five Love Languages and His Needs, Her Needs? If not I would suggest it asap. I know sometimes men don't like to read books on relationships. It doesn't seem "manly." But simply tell him that unless he reads them in order to let you know what he needs you can't do what he asks. We can't read minds but when we both discuss things using the same terminology it can clear up many mis communications. When my wife and I read these books we were surprised by each other's answers. Knowing what she appreciates helped me to anticipate things better and pro actively do things without waiting for her to ask or getting frustrated. She now "talks" to me in a way I appreciate. For instance, my love language is touch. She is not a very huggy person naturally. But now she hugs me a lot more, she puts her hand on my leg when I'm driving, and she holds my hand when we walk together.
 

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Have you both read The Five Love Languages and His Needs, Her Needs? If not I would suggest it asap. I know sometimes men don't like to read books on relationships. It doesn't seem "manly." But simply tell him that unless he reads them in order to let you know what he needs you can't do what he asks. We can't read minds but when we both discuss things using the same terminology it can clear up many mis communications. When my wife and I read these books we were surprised by each other's answers. Knowing what she appreciates helped me to anticipate things better and pro actively do things without waiting for her to ask or getting frustrated. She now "talks" to me in a way I appreciate. For instance, my love language is touch. She is not a very huggy person naturally. But now she hugs me a lot more, she puts her hand on my leg when I'm driving, and she holds my hand when we walk together.
I reserved His Needs, Her Needs from the library but haven't gotten it yet. While in counseling prior to marriage he asked the counselor for suggested reading. I went home that night and ordered 2 copies of the book from Amazon, I downloaded the accompanying worksheets. My husband read maybe the first 2 chapters and then gave up on it, so I was hesitant to suggest another book. But I may suggest this one after I read it!
 

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I reserved His Needs, Her Needs from the library but haven't gotten it yet. While in counseling prior to marriage he asked the counselor for suggested reading. I went home that night and ordered 2 copies of the book from Amazon, I downloaded the accompanying worksheets. My husband read maybe the first 2 chapters and then gave up on it, so I was hesitant to suggest another book. But I may suggest this one after I read it!
Ask your husband how he expects you to be the woman he wants you to be if he can't explore the issue with you. Tell him you want to give him everything he asks for but you don't know how. Now between you and I this is only to get him to read the book. Sometimes you have to overcome a man's reluctance by stroking his ego a little. Trust me, if you get him to read the two books I mentioned you will get just as much back as you put in. Probably even more. I was the same way. I was reluctant to read relationship books. But my wife used her womanly ways to get me to read them and I'm glad I did now.

Oh and consider buying the books and not just taking them out of the library. My wife and I refer back to them from time to time so its good to have them handy.
 

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When you realize it's not what they do, it's who they are.
That to me is the whole deal. My wife and I constantly fight over lack of sex but she will never me my standard because its not who she is and never will be. The real question is can I live like this the rest of my life and that I don't know. Its a sad situation for us both because when I don't get enough sex she doesn't get the emotional support she should and that equals a bad marriage
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