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631,

 

Hello. I am your neighbor up in Washington. We are not too far from ya'll, but still not close enough for me to go give Hope a hug. I have compassion but it may not seem like it right now. I want you to re-read something you yourself wrote:

What can I do to help the current situation? My words mean nothing to her. Just actions can make the difference, of which I have not been cutting it. So until more actions are available, what can I do now?

I highlighted in blue the question and highlighted in red the answer, YOUR answer.

 

We can not offer you anything better. Your wife is the marriage manual, and you have read her correctly... only true, honest and pure actions will help. THINK: Go back 20 years, no cell phones, no texting, no e mailing. Now... MAN UP!! Walk the distance to tell your wife you love her. Yes walking in at or before 8:30 on the nose would have said loudly "I LOVE YOU" "You are worth the effort to walk up here and see". Can you see what I am saying?? Do not depend on technology, because technology can and does fail you. Technology is like another person, you do not really have to make the effort.

 

You need to court your wife like it is the very first time. You need to figure that she is going to be tired. She is trying to handle a 1, 3, and 6 year old- with some special needs; additionally she has a 30 something (+/-) child too!! She is worn out and you are not helping matters. Of course she may be getting depressed. If she is truly in a clinical depression then by God get her to a doctor and support her in getting her help. That says you love her when you look out for things, even/especially her health.

 

I hope you feel helped and not yelled at here. You know what you need to do, so do it. BTW: When have you signed ya'll up for an intensive?? If you have not then do it!! If you do not have child care then yell "Help". You may or may not have family available. If not, come get to know us so that you might feel comfortable leaving your precious children here with us.

 

We have plenty of room!! We can help, but I can understand your not knowing us and not feeling comfortable. You can get to know us and even ask for a copy of our fingerprints, criminal background check, and a copy of our foster care license. My H is an employee of the state of Or., so you know that they would have him checked out.

 

We are people who will whole heartedly support you going and doing this. It is hard to feel support at times from family and/or friends. We flew from Wa. to Fla. 2 years ago, so we know this can be a challenge. Our children were 11, 9 1/2, and 8 at the time; the last 2 were not here yet. My parents kept our children but they did not understand.

 

This offer is not to scare you that there are crazy people here on the forum, but rather... ones who want to see you heal your wife, your marriage, your family, and yourself. We are not stalkers, we care. I hope you will get the help that your wife needs. She is too precious to lose.

 

BLessings,

 

Tigger

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Please forgive me if I get this wrong here...I didn't have a whole lot of time to pray before answering here...

 

From what I am seeing here, and again I haven't spoken to Hope to get her take on this yet either...

 

Jeff and I had a problem last weekend.. All week long I was telling Jeff that we needed to get the house cleaned up and then mentioned that the yard needs cutting as well.. I mentioned this to Jeff each day all week long that the house needed cleaning..(we has been out of town the weekend before and still had lots of camping gear laying around)

 

Well Saturday comes and Jeff gets up before I do and heads outside to cut the grass...while he's doing this I wake up and look around and Jeff is no where to be found...Finially I find him outside and know that Jeff didn't listen to my heart and went about doing something else on his own adgenda..he made up his own "do to list" for the weekend...

 

So I brought him inside and said to him...Now yes, I did mention that the yard needed cutting...but that wasn't on the TOP of the PRIORITY list for this day...Instead of asking or even listening to what my heart was saying (get the house cleaned up)..he wanted to do what he wanted to do(the yard)...

 

The bottom line here: This is about listening to her heart here and asking if you don't understand....While there is always something that needs to be done...work, house, kids etc...it's listening to what HER PRIORITIES are, meaning which is more important to HER in that moment...

 

Always...talk to her about things before making any plans..even if you are in a good place at the time....HER input is the most important thing...To be in one flesh relationship with each other...

 

Right now...she might be feeling that you were putting others and "to do list" above her...making her feel less cared for and there fore rejecting her opinions on these things...Make sure you are always getting her take on what is important for her in that moment....

 

Blessings

Heather

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I would agree with Heather here. I bet Hope feels like she's just a piece of furniture - you plan stuff without asking her, and then when the plans change you don't bother to tell her in a way that you're sure she'll get the message. You're telling her that she doesn't matter at all in the general scheme of life.

 

So first, apologize for blowing her off one more time.

 

Then you need to start including her in any plans you make. There is a fine line to walk here, though - if you come across as "asking permission," like you don't have a brain in your head and she needs to tell you everything, it will drive her crazy. You need to say this is what I'd like to do, will that work for you or do you have a better idea? and then listen to her input.

 

And for heaven's sake, don't promise anything that you're not willing and able to deliver! Every time you break a promise, you dig the hole a little deeper. You're gonna be 6 feet under before you know it . . .

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Tigger, gaininghope, and Looney_Tunes, thank you all for the quick responses! Looking back at things and your replies, I can see everything so clearly. Problem is I didn't see it at that moment. When I had the chance to make a difference :!: I want to know here heart, like never before and I am determined that I will do this, with God's help. I have never put her first in my life, and am not doing that great a job right now. Hope feels hopeless right now. But I am not giving up on this marriage or what God has in store for us. For the first time I know we can have an OHM!

 

Tigger and Looney_Tunes, yes technology has added to my laziness. You make a great point here about disregarding it, making sure she gets the message, and getting personal! Yet another missed opportunity.

 

Great analogy Heather. When I look at your story from the outside I can think, come on Jeff, geez! ;) But when I'm in his position, and that story is my own, I don't see it so clearly at the time.

 

I will discuss more with Hope about trying to get to an intensive. Thanks for the offer Tigger! Have to think about that one!

 

Thank you everyone and please continue to get tough with me. I don't need to be pampered! Unfortunately, pampering doesn't work too well. If Jeff and Nemo are out there and have any advice from the men's side I'd love to hear that too!

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631,

 

I want you to think about something you wrote:

I will discuss more with Hope about trying to get to an intensive. Thanks for the offer Tigger! Have to think about that one!

You say that you will discuss with Hope about trying to get to an Intensive, that is really a good thing to "discuss". One thing though is that you need to initiate good and positive action, which may or may not mean that you just need to "Do it".

 

The next thing is...

You wrote that "Have to think about that one!" Well I want to say and caution that instead of you thinking about this, you need to go discuss this with your bride.

 

I am not yelling at you, but I am cautioning you. Please go to your wife, right now, and talk with her about everything. She needs to feel included. This would mean that you need to discuss everything that is going on in your head, as well as each time you are communicating with folks on the forum.

 

Well I am trying to type and listen to the call, which is not an easy thing as I have ADD. Keeping ya'll in our prayers. Make sure that Hope gets on here on the forum, she needs this right now.

 

BLessings,

 

Tigger

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Tigger,

Yes I agree. I did go and speak with her about the intensive. We would both like to go but we are very protective over our little ones, and won't even trust most of our family members to watch them. My mom won't be available until after the new year due to already using up her vacation days. Everything regarding the intensive is discussed with Hope, it isn't just me thinking about it. I do have a habit of doing that though, obviously. I know it is up to me to make this work. Either way, we will get to an intensive when and if we are able. She knows this. Regarding her being ont he forums, she is active on the forums every day and reads my posts.

 

Thanks again!

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631,

 

Your question was what can you do now? The answer that I have is one that I need to learn just as well as you. Yup, Dory is feeling much the same as Hope. For the third time in as many days, I have, through my carelessness and forgetfulness, toppled the still haphazard stack of bricks that is the foundation of her trust. And there is no love without trust.

 

My lack of effort to remember simple things has wrought much emotional destruction. By not listening to her directions for the evening, I ended up rushing the kids to eat a messy dinner in the car while simultaneously making my daughter late for driver's education and finally ending up late for 3 dental appointments. Similar lack of care yielded an overlong to search for lost keys under the bleachers after the high school football game. Why? cause I forgot to bring the flashlight she was careful to remind me of. Worst yet, in my soreness from her venting on the last two events I chose to reward myself by lazing about the house and watching TV with my already-too-lazy son the moment she leaves the house. Great example, Dad! All that pain could have been avoided. My deception and carelessness have been the weapons I have used on her for majority of our marriage. These kinds of actions are crippling to her spirit. And like you, I have left a long trail of broken promises.

 

Broken promises to wives like ours are as gentle as a knife wound to them. They SO want us to become reliable and trustworthy that they pin almost all their hopes on us behaving that way. So when we blow it due to momentary insanity or whatever lame excuse we have, we cut that string they are dangling from and they go into free fall.

 

My answer to your question is simple: don't stop trying to be her blessing no matter what. We need to spend even more time thinking how we can make their lives more secure. When we stumble and feel beat up by their responding emotions and think we need just a little break, that is exactly the time when we need to bear down and focus even harder on nothing but the safety of her heart.

 

You might say that all that venting and the emotional blasting that seems to emanate from her is an attack on your character. It is not. It is her desperately testing the sensitivity of the thug that just decked her. That thug is you... (and me). Their is a reason her vent feels like an attack. If you feel beat down it can be a good thing. Just try to realize that what you are feeling is just like what she feels only worse because she has been feeling it for so much longer. What do you think it is like to live with that kind of hopelessness piled on top of that kind of pain for that many years?

 

Blow through that pain we feel and fly like some superdude to catch her before she hits bottom. You can catch her if you let her spill all that pain out with nothing but love and concern for her in return.

 

Bear down, 631. Hang on like a bulldog to your promise... the promise to hear her heart. You owe it to her and much more. Never quit. Pray to Jesus to send the Holy Spirit and to fill you with his spiritual might. He can make you into the warrior for her redemption that he wants you to be.

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Nemo!

 

Thank you for sharing with me. Like everyone else, I appreciate the time you have taken here. Your words are encouraging. Your real life struggles that are so similar to mine are very helpful. Thank you.

 

I'm getting the kids bathed (while writing this on my laptop) and ready for bed. I had a nice walk with Hope (and kids), got the farm chores done, and soon Hope and I are going to sit down for a movie. We just got "Skyangel" tv, a faith based Direct TV style system. Pretty neat that I highly recommend for everyone. It has PPV movies that are family approved. I look forward to spending a little time with Hope tonight!

 

Thanks again!

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Go to www.skyangel.com. It is it's own system, seperate from any others. It is a box that hooks up to your DSL or High Speed Cable internet. It has wireless capabilities if you have a wireless router. Check out the website for more information. There are a couple different packages to choose from. We have only had it for a few days now and are still experimenting. You can call them and ask questions too. They are very helpful.

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Go to www.skyangel.com. It is it's own system, seperate from any others. It is a box that hooks up to your DSL or High Speed Cable internet. It has wireless capabilities if you have a wireless router. Check out the website for more information. There are a couple different packages to choose from. We have only had it for a few days now and are still experimenting. You can call them and ask questions too. They are very helpful.

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Wow, I just checked into the website and I can't get over how easy it is. It uses the internet and shows its programs over your TV! I know I am in the dark ages as we don't do cable TV, so I hafta ask, are there many services that uses the internet-to-TV mechanism as this?

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Friday night was our date night; first in some time that it actually took place due to fresh hurts. I was so excited that I was finally going out with Hope. Even turned out the restaurant was the exact one she was hoping for! After a nice dinner, we decided to rent a movie (since there is nothing good out in theaters).

 

Lately, Hope has been going into the rental stores alone in order to keep me from being around the bad video covers. This time, she asked if I would be able to go with her because it makes her feel uncomfortable being in there alone. So, I felt like what an opportunity to prove to her I could go in and have no issues with lusting over video covers. I could go in and avoid videos, make her feel secure, and get on with our evening. I knew of a video "Straight to the Heart" I knew they had since I called the store the week before. It was a Christian based movie with good material. We asked if they had it and they didn't, it was checked out. So Hope wanted to look around and see if she could find something else.

 

I kept my head down, straight at the floor, avoiding all videos. I decided I would pull out my phone and play a game to keep myself busy rather than just staring at the floor. Well, for a split second, and literally that, I caught a glimpse of one video, and of course it happened to be an indecent video, just beyond view of my phone. Aahhh!! Not what I wanted to see!! I immediately repositioned myself, ready to flee the store. I had absolutely no temptations from this video, but rather a panic that I came across it! Why did the one video that I caught in my site have to be a bad one!! I thought, I had promised Hope I wouldn't have any issues in here, so was seeing this cover "an issue"?

 

Yes, in that I saw it. I didn't want to see it, and I didn't get anything from it. Even though, I should have immediately told Hope. Bud I didn't. As I am learning, it is the passive aggressive side of me that thought, if I tell her that I saw this, what will she think? Will her mind start racing and questions come up as to did I really want to see it? Well of course! Why wouldn't she?! It was potential conflict on my date night that I just didn't want. I really wanted to have a nice evening with Hope. I knew I wasn't guilty of seeing this on purpose or looking for it, nor had I had any "bad" thoughts or feelings about the video, but I feared the potential conflict from discussing it.

 

So, 3 days later, she mentions I didn't put anything on my "calendar" (I write down how my day went in regards to temptations, etc.) regarding the video store. Oh shoot, I thought and said, then I told her. She told me I was a liar since I didn't tell her immediately. Now, instead of just dealing with the issue at hand when it happened, we are dealing with the fact that I didn't bring it up to her, then, or at all. She had to ask. I know in my past I would have lied, covered it up, and tried to push it aside. As I think about it, that is in a way what I was trying to do. Push it aside. I can't lie or push things aside any more, I want this relationship to thrive. I want Hope to feel secure, loved, honored, and cherished. I want an OHM. But I also realize that by me not bringing this up to her, right away, I am hindering this relationship from moving forward. I apologized to her, but she did not want to hear it. I can understand. I called her after she left with the kids to take my daughter to school, and left another apology. These types of things just can't happen in our relationship.

 

I keep thinking, if only I had never gone in the store with her. But the correct thinking is, if only I would have told her immediately.

 

Hope, I know you are hurt and frustrated with me. I am so sorry for not being upfront with you right when it happened. I own it and take responsibility for not bringing it up with you. I am so sorry you had to even ask about it. I know it brings back all the hurt I have caused you our entire relationship, keeping the wounds fresh. I know you hate that all you ever get from me seems to me apologies for messing up. I would be upset too. I am so sorry Hope.

 

631

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Yes, in that I saw it. I didn't want to see it, and I didn't get anything from it. Even though, I should have immediately told Hope. Bud I didn't. As I am learning, it is the passive aggressive side of me that thought, if I tell her that I saw this, what will she think? Will her mind start racing and questions come up as to did I really want to see it? Well of course! Why wouldn't she?! It was potential conflict on my date night that I just didn't want. I really wanted to have a nice evening with Hope. I knew I wasn't guilty of seeing this on purpose or looking for it, nor had I had any "bad" thoughts or feelings about the video, but I feared the potential conflict from discussing it.

I keep thinking, if only I had never gone in the store with her. But the correct thinking is, if only I would have told her immediately.

 

Amen. this was EXACTLY some of our growing pains too. YES you will be tempted - over and over again - but you MUST bring them up to her to do battle against them against FOR the protection of your relationship.

 

Fear and self-protect and selfishness got in your way: Fear of what she will do to you, Self-protecting from your FEAR, and selfishness of how it would hurt your chances of a perfect evening - from YOUR point of view.

 

IF you would have told her THAT evening, she probably would have cringed, maybe even cried a little from the hurt (for the fact that you even HAVE this problem was NEVER her fault). But telling her immediately and thus her seeing HOW you dealt with it would have had LONG lasting healing power. You most definitely threw away a perfect opportunity to bless your wife. I am not saying for you to go look for battles to fight, i.e. don't go looking at videos so that you can TELL her, but rather let her see HOW you are fighting this battle when the battle comes knocking at your door. For it knocks on the door of all men - hence the title "Every Man's Battle" - your pretending that it doesn't exist or that you are perfect in avoiding it is a lie and she knows it.

 

You are on the right path to at least recognizing and admitting it here, but you need to take it to the next level and attend to the problem IN THE MOMENT WITH YOUR BRIDE.

 

Best wishes and God Bless.

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Dory, appreciate the quick reponse here. All I can say is yes, I agree. I blew a perfect opportunity to bless my wife. I am reading up on the "Passive Aggressive Man" thread, and of course, seeing me all over it. Hope had to, and is still, putting up with a lot of junk that I keep throwing at her. I absolutely hate that I am this way! I want to die to it NOW!

 

I am also going through the "Game Plan" by Joe Dallas, as recommended by Nemo. Yesterday was Day 2, and of course today Day 3. I really focused last night while going through the questions on Day 2 of seeing what I have done to Hope and my family. Repeating things out loud helps drive in the fact of what happened.

 

Gotta run...

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Thanks Dory you beat me to it today! :D

 

631: Not much more that I can add here other than to say that you have to keep your focus where it belongs...remember your wife is your accountablity partner and you want to be honest and transparent with her...

 

Now let's look at this from Hopes view...She's hurt again...not only because you didn't write in your calander..but because you hide it from her, which is lying to your wife! Had you just been honest and wrote it down and then shared it with Hope...then all of this could have been avoided here...but because you went into shame mode (self-focused mode) you opened a wound that was starting to heal just a little....Now you have a nasty infected pus filled wound thats going to need lots of attention...

 

So where do you go from here...Apologies aren't going to do the trick here...sure they might help a little...but its your actions over the long haul that will shows her you are committed to this....what's your motivation to stop you from not sharing with Hope again in the future? What is going to keep you from lying again? Maybe Hope does need to put a conquence in place for this right now....say you are out of the house for a 3 days (since it took you that long to talk to her about this and come clean with her). Maybe it's sleeping in your car for a couple of nights will give you the motivation to stop you from doing this again...

 

What do you think? Willing to allow Hope to put into place these types of conquences when she feels they need to be put into place?

 

Heather

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Maybe Hope does need to put a conquence in place for this right now....say you are out of the house for a 3 days (since it took you that long to talk to her about this and come clean with her). Maybe it's sleeping in your car for a couple of nights will give you the motivation to stop you from doing this again...

 

This might "seem" juvenile and trite to you now, but believe it or not, this works to heal her and it works to help you remember. Encourage her to come up with a good consequence and then JUST DO IT.

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That's a great idea regarding consequences...actually right along the lines of what I was thinking. As for seeing the cover, I question how careful he was being with his eyes, especially since he lied for three days about it.

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I understand the position I put us in. I am agreable to whatever Hope desires for consequences. As I said, I own what I did. Hope, I also understand you questioning how careful I was with my eyes. I would question it to. You let me know what you would like in regards to consequences, and I will understandably agree.

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I keep thinking, if only I had never gone in the store with her. But the correct thinking is, if only I would have told her immediately.

BINGO!!

 

It's better that she feel pain from the sting of the reminder of your temptations, than the onslaught of mistrust from you holding something back.

 

Hope and 631, since this is so early in 631's journey back to sexual integrity, it is better to not put 631 in the position of a store full of questionable video covers. Even some of the "family" films have provocative artwork on the cover. Better to let him walk out his avoidance while he renews his mind with the images of your loveliness alone. This is my wisdom to you both. In fact a media fast would be more appropriate for him at this point in his recovery from addiction. No video or print media other than Christian books and music for 90 full days. He has enough in his memory banks that needs to be expunged. You guys will also be able to relax and reconnect personally. Go bowling, batting cages, walks, golf, play board games, cribbage, checkers. Organize your family photos. Create something together. Repaint your bedroom together. There is so many things that will bring togetherness that don't invove TV or films.

 

631, take initiative in this area and ask Hope Out or In on a date that you planned for her. Give her your attention and research what she enjoys. Begin to date your sweetheart like she really matters more than anything in the world to you.

 

Make it easier on both of you. Say no to all tv and video for 631 for now and for the next 90 days. As he rebuilds his mind, he will be in a stronger position to resist temptation as opposed to the anxiety-ridden, addict white knuckling his way past the temptation.

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Amen Firewalker!

 

We use a website called www.kids-in-mind.com which rates movies based on sexual content/ Violence / profanity. We look up every movie we plan to watch first and if the first category is rated more than a 2 we AVOID it like the plague. Doesn't leave much to watch, but the site also allows you to search for movies with less than, say, a 2 in any category.

 

But to combine Firewalker's and Heather's advice, perhaps his "consequence" is 90 days no media. And he gives YOU foot massages when he gets bored. :lol:

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