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You are right Mary Jane, Crystal is my equal, my Ishshah, she is not some goddess but flesh and blood. I don't know the reason why but I still have an issue with anger, lately it has come out that she has "cut me off", thank goodness. She is no longer picking me up and feeding me, this is a good thing but very difficult for Crystal as it becomes very frustrating and stressfull to her. It feels like i have really messed up when in fact I haven't, just haven't been positive, instead spinning the wheels trying to figure out "What did i do?" Which is self-focoused, then i go further down that road and say"I'm just no good" which is even more self-focused. When she does speak her mind my pride gets flustered and I star with the "But you don't understand"..."I'm not doing that"... wah, wah, wah, then i get angry. I'm really not getting something here, and i don't know what it is. Crystal is really great, laid back, easy going, beautiful and fun to be around, it should be nothing to just relax and enjoy. It feels like I put myself under pressure to perform a lot of times that if she isn't all smiles i have really goofed up. I know that is wrong thinking, but it is still there. Maybe i try too hard in my own strength, and I know I can't do it in my own strength. Any help would be appreciated. Love ya Crystal!

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I'm glad to hear that Crystal is no longer picking you up and feeding you! It's not out of meanness, as you know.

 

 

Crystal is really great, laid back, easy going, beautiful and fun to be around, it should be nothing to just relax and enjoy. It feels like I put myself under pressure to perform a lot of times that if she isn't all smiles i have really goofed up.

 

I'm glad you see Crystal for who she is -- someone enjoyable to be around.

 

Whenever she happens not to be all smiles, it's time to put on your Superman cape (which you DO have in your possession), go to her and do whatever you already know to do.

 

The Superman cape is the power you already have, simply because you are Crystal's husband. Your personality, or hers, has nothing to do with it. You HAVE the ability to make Crystal's heart smile.

 

Crystal may be beautiful, smart, and generally wonderful, but she has one weakness -- she is dependent on you, emotionally.

 

She NEEDS your emotional strength! You have that strength. If you don't feel it, ask God to reveal it to you. He will.

 

Go to her. Be her husband.

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Thank-you Mary Jane for the time and thought you put into reading our posts and responding! You are an angel.

 

Freedog, thank-you too for posting. I'm not sure that your posts are beneficial to you, but they help me. And the more open and honest you are, the more help you can get from others. Since I have very little left in my resources right now, these people are your life-line to a happy marriage. Please take heed to what Mary Jane, Plans for Hope and others tell you!

 

Crystal, (talking to myself) I don't think you are "cutting off" Freedog, so much as you are NOT cutting off yourself. You aren't letting him cut you off. You are taking care of yourself. You are a people pleaser, specifically, you have drained yourself trying to be a husband pleaser. You have tried hard to please your husband by being laid back and easy-going and fun to be with AND trying not to be anxious, depressed and worried about other people for the sake of Freedog. So, I agree with Mary Jane, you aren't being MEAN, although it feels that way. You aren't being selfish, although it feels that way. You are learning to take care of yourself and being good to yourself not worrying about how Freedog is feeling and what he is needing. Love Crystal (done talking to me)

 

The last several weeks have been horrible. I wrote a praise letter about our marriage the day after we got back from the trip when we visited Kay and Bob. I never posted the praise letter, because things went to he-double toothpicks right after that. Freedog has been pulling so many of his OLD dog tricks that it triggered horrible things in me and of course the horrible things in me caused fear and anxiety and anger in Freedog...Bad stuff, mainly pride and anger. Freedog tells me we're getting more attacks from Satan, because we're getting nearer where God wants us to be in our marriage. I don't know...but I know that Freedog has to quit depending on me to protect him from whatever is attacking him. That's also what I'm cutting off is me protecting him. I am protecting myself from Freedog and that is very scary for Freedog who doesn't have so much of an inferiority complex as he thinks too highly of himself. His posts have a sound of "poor me", "I'm so weak without Crystal" and that repulses me. His posts help me see him for who he thinks he is.

 

On a positive note...we had a good Thanksgiving. We had a house full of people we love and who love us. I took a nerve pill before the gathering, that angered Freedog---("You don't need THAT"), but I think it helped. I guess he thought it was an insult to him that I was feeling stressed, I don't know. Marriage was no fun getting ready for the big dinner during the days before, but we made it and it was a fun day.

 

I'm married to two different guys who share the same body and every day I never know which one I'm going to be with.

Edited by Crystal
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Crystal;

Thanks for posting an update; was wondering how the Thanksgiving holiday was going for you guys! I know that many times when there's already stress in our marriages; the holidays aren't really something fun to look forward to!

I'm glad that he stepped up and helped you enjoy the day with your friends and family! And PLEASE don't keep feeling guilty for taking care of yourself; that is NOT being selfish, or taking anything away from being Freedog's helpmeet; God means for us wives to take care of ourselves and NOT completely wear ourselves out babying our husbands; and always putting their selfish wants first! So keep on standing up against these attacks from the enemy; let Freedog find his own way of coping with his feelings and struggles to really be 100% committed to walking as a Christlike man; take time to rest & relax, trust God to guide your every step!

 

Freedog;

You need to get back on the conference calls ASAP; speak up and let the moderators know you're listening in; and need some help here! The next call is Saturday evening, at 9pm Eastern; with Joshua and Kimberly. You also need to get back on the forum every day, read the many threads of the other men who are working to win their wives hearts back; AND post here regularly! Ask questions if you don't understand what to do next to bless and love your wife; humbly accept the advice and suggestions given to you; keep your eyes focused on the goal here; which is to have an OHM, live in an understanding way with your wife; so God will hear your prayers; show your family what a real godly marriage is!

 

Praying for both of you today; thanks to both of you for coming on and posting!

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Thanks for responding and for the help. i am learning more and more how vulnerable Crystal is and how I have abused that over thae years. I have treated her as a little child and not allowed her to be vulnerable. I have also been learning that it is not my strength she needs, my strength is incomplete, when I drift away from her mshe needs me to ask god for his strength and he really does answer, but it takes moving towards Crystal for Him to grant the strength. i cannot sit back in passivity and expect God to move me, it does not work that way.

I pray and move, He grants the strength, simple.

 

Simple also to just Love, it isn't anything more than gentleness and kindness. It takes alot of water and sun light to bring a tree from seed to blosoom, Crystal has been denied for a long time. She married a normal guy that is now growing into abnormality each day, sorry it is taking so long to kill this child. The anger that crops up is my child selfishly expecting to be rewarded for the puny efforts he puts out, when he isn't he pouts and throws a tantrum. i know this, I hate this, not nearly as much as Crystal, but this is where God's strength can over come.

 

You really do wow me Crystal, you are, next to Christ, the best thing that has ever happened to me.

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Freedog;

Glad to see you posting; keep being consistent here with that! I hope that you are able to get on the conference calls this week; and speak up if you have questions; or need some help! That would really bless your wife's heart; to see you taking the initiative here; and really start walking this out 100% of the time! There's a huge amount of help here on the forum as well; I'd encourage you to take time each day and just read some of the posts other men have written on what is helping them bless their wives! Your wife is a very special helpmeet here; God's wonderful blessing to you! Just keep listening to her heart cry here; she knows what will help you continue growing up into the new Christlike husband that God always intended you to be!

Will keep praying for both of you!

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Thanks for the advice and encouragement. it is becoming more and more clear that the sin I do, I do it on purpose. I cannot say truthfully that "I forgot...' or "I wasn't paying attention...", no, because i do have control. Crystal is not in control, circumstances are not in control, I am in control of whether i choose to surrender to Christ and allow him to lead or follow my sinful nature and deceive and defend my ego. It is pretty simple. To cultivate the attitude of embracing Christ so that i can embrace Crystal with Christ's love is the goal. It is still not very relaxing for Crystal when one moment she has to deal with a child here, but the issue is to allow her to put a voice to her heart, and then deny the pride and ego that hurts her.

 

Something that keeps popping up as well is "being" as oppssed to "Doing". As a male it is so much easier to do, especially those things I am "competent" at, but being involves relationship and that is what we are created for. I really do need Crystal's community that she offers. As we work on being it is funny how all those "to do" things become so very unimportant. The only real to do there seems to be is to do my best for Crystal. To really put forth the effort 100% of the time. There is no one like her and she is a wonderful gift from God.

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To cultivate the attitude of embracing Christ so that i can embrace Crystal with Christ's love is the goal...

 

There is no one like her and she is a wonderful gift from God.

 

Just wanted to highlight those words.

 

---

 

God bless you both!

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  • 5 weeks later...

Crystal & Freedog;

Just checking in here; wondering how things are going for you during this holiday season? Freedog; how's it going with sincerely loving and blessing your wife everyday? I hope that you're being a little more consistent in daily living as an humble, Christlike husband; putting Crystal's wishes & wants & needs first all the time; 24/7!!!

Hope that both of you can come back soon with a positive update!

God bless you both; may this New Year be the best one ever in your marriage; as you both work together toward that goal of having an OHM!

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It has been a while since last post. Sorry to say, Plans For Hope, that consistency is still lacking. I know I have control over my attitudes and actions. They don't "Just Happen", or that they are "Just a part of me". Despite knowing this i willingly choose not to love Crystal consistently. I allow her feelings to become my own, trying to figure out what she wants to hear, and I react to her as a child. It is purely manipulative behavior and it frustrates her to no end. She wants to grow and experience a truley consistant relationship, and that is our desire. It becomes the same old song and dance, few days good then wham. Lots of stupid pride and ego left around. But we are growing as a couple, the good times are great and present a foretaste of what it will be like. Christ is working in our relationship day by day. I am starting to learn to recognize when I am choosing to fall away from Crystal and then return, but not every time consistently. I still need her to tell me and even then I get defensive. poor Crystal, what she has to endure, I am really sorry. Thank-you Crystal for allowing me to hang around and become a Christ like husband for you. You really are beautiful, really, and we will make it, really.

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having a lot of good times but still dispersed with your selfishness is still "living in abuse" for your bride -- this is not right -- this can be changed -- by YOU

 

 

please go to this thread and listen to ALL of the recordings -- it will change your life if you CHOOSE to do this -- you have had ample time -- so, we know it is not about the experiences or the knowledge of it, it is about your stubbornness against doing GOOD to and for your bride each and every day, consistently.

 

http://joelandkathy.invisionzone.com/index.php?/topic/2178-four-must-listen-to-recordings/

 

and then read through this one: http://joelandkathy.invisionzone.com/index.php?/topic/3604-its-a-decision-and-other-pearls-husbands-need-to-read/

 

and then re-do your apology by checking out all of (and I do mean all of it, especially the one about LotsOfWorkToDo:

http://joelandkathy.invisionzone.com/index.php?/topic/244-great-verbal-apology-written-apology-is-also-here/

 

prayerfully and cheering for the both of you to have an OHM,

June of

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Sorry Folks, THIS message is written by me, CRYSTAL, not Freedog...

 

It's discouraging. I feel like I must be doing something very wrong. I spend half my life these days depressed and I don't even know how to talk about it anymore. Freedog is such a good person to be around, but if I show any glimmer of weakness he falls apart and pulls out his old moldy box of tricks and so it ruins my feelings about the few good days that we might have had, because it feels like the good was all a lie. It feels like if I could just be happy all the time then things would be fine, but that's not even true...yesterday, after he finished reading from Livin' It and Lovin' It aloud to me, we were feeling fine & I was trying to explain something to him, I don't remember what. Whatever it was I said, he felt threatened and tried to "attack" kiss me while I was talking, I instinctively pulled away and it hurt his feelings. Next thing I know he's pouting and angry, even after JUST reading from Joel and Kathy and HE said I should change the locks and he should move out. He acts like he is so sensitive with easily hurt feelings and I can't help but FEEL like I'm being too harsh on him. I try to call these episodes little bumps in the road, I try to be positive to encourage his good behavior, but when he starts pouting and feeling sorry for himself I feel very angry at him. When he eventually pulls himself out of it, We make up, & make love & I sometimes feel used and the cycle starts over. Sometimes it feels like he's WAITING for some transformation to happen to him. I have told him that the transformation has already taken place, he already understands and knows perfectly well how to put it into practice and there is absolutely NO reason whatsoever for him to treat me so badly when he doesn't feel appreciated or feels misunderstood. I don't talk with any of my friends anymore, I don't know how to talk about my life. I don't even like to talk to Freedog in front of the kids, because there is no telling where our conversation will end up. If I ever have a conflict with the boys, it seems he sides with them against me. Oh yeah and there was a stranger in the yard one day last week and I started questioning the stranger as to what he was doing in our yard (he was a surveyer, but had not informed us that he was there and since we live out in the country it felt odd and weird that he was set up looking toward window as I had walked by the window, felt assaulted, y'know?) anyhow, Freedog seemed to side up with the stranger...kinda like, "my mom's just kinda moody, ignore her and she'll go away..." and when I tried to tell Freedog how it made me feel, he felt criticized and picked on and it made him go in his head. Almost daily things like this happen and we should be well past the point of him being so . . . I don't know...womanly? I am well beyond confused and not sure what I should be doing or not doing. Are they normal bumps? Am I not responding warmly? Am I responding too warmly? I am not dropping my expectations, we're too far into this for me to either resign or lower my expectations. We are definitely not having an outrageously happy marriage, because he falls too frequently and I never have a chance to feel safe enough to let my guard down. Often when I try to tell him how I feel he gets defensive and hurt. I don't trust the good days, they seem like they must be nothing but lies. When he falls, he is NO DIFFERENT than he was back in the old days of porn before Joel and Kathy. I'm pretty sure his eyes are faithful to me now, but those old defenses kick in like he has to cover up and make himself look good. Other times, he seems so strong and only concerned about me and my feelings, but who can trust it? I'm just rambling, not sure if I'm makin much sense or not. Maybe I'll feel better in the morning...

Edited by FreeDog
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Guest Mrs.Clean

Crystal,

 

I'm so sorry!

 

#1....this is NOT your fault. I know you're tired of hearing it, but it is NOT. You are not responding too warmly, you do not need to lower your expectations. What you need to do is when a situation like that with the attack kiss happened, you grab the phone, dial it and get on a conference call. Interrupt whoever is talking and tell them who you are and that you are having a problem RIGHT NOW and you need to get help. They will find a stopping point and HELP you.

 

I would also suggest that you get on Kathy's women's call if you are not already on there. I know you've been before, and they will really help pick you up and encourage you on your role as a helpmeet.

 

This is all Freedog being passive and getting away with whatever he can. There is NO EXCUSE for his behavior...and I know, you are a very patient and graceful woman, and you have so much tolerance for his slow learning, but I can also see that it is beginning to affect you. I'm so sorry.

 

Definitely get the two of you on at least two calls a week...and you need to be talking on the calls...not just listening.

 

Sounds like you're doing your homework, otherwise. Are you SURE there's no porn? Not asking because I have a hunch or anything, I guess I just want to hear HIM say it. So...Freedog...are you SURE there's no porn? No swimsuit catalogs, bra catalogs, etc? Sometimes something like that can rocket you right into selfish mode, and that could be why you guys are experiencing bad days for no reason.

 

There is absolutely NO EXCUSE for reacting to her like a child. You are a grown man and you know better. I only say this because I met you and I know you are smart enough and strong enough to treat your wife well NOW. She is such a great wife, too. I can't bear to see you damage her tender heart any longer!

 

Praying for you two to find that OHM!!!!

 

Take Care,

Julie

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Crystal;

I totally agree 100% with the advice June and Julie have given you here; it's way past time for Freedog to get on ALL the calls each week; he needs to listen in AND speak up for help; he needs to get back on the forum here; and start a thread of his own in the section 'Men working to win their wives hearts back'; since it's very obvious he's not working with you in this process of reaching your goal of having an OHM!

Maybe it's also time for him to re-schedule another Intensive for HIM to go to; to refresh his memory about his responsibility in becoming the Christlike husband you need!

Please do dial into the conference call tonight; and speak up and let Michael and Annalea know you guys need help!

Freedog should NOT be given a choice here; it's either choose to completely, humbly, sincerely do this; or some consequences will be enforced!

I'm praying for you tonight; dear friend; know this is such a tough, exhausting thing to keep going through day after day after day....with very few positive changes or efforts made from your husband!

Hope to see another update soon; please come back here as well; find the strength and support you need to move forward here as Freedog's helpmeet!

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I woke up today feeling the same sort of discouragement as I was feeling yesterday.

 

As for getting on the conference calls, it's the one part of this program that we've been unwilling and unable to keep up. Freedog works until 10:30 CST and has a 45 minute drive home. He often listens to the call while he drives home, but that's often a problem too because of some "dead zones" on the highway. I have not been listening to any calls, but hope to be better about getting on for at least a half hour each evening. I should be able to do that much. I listened to every call I could get on in the beginning, but not now. No reason. Women's call on Tuesday morning is missed due to my work schedule. Recorded calls work well for us. As far as speaking up---I need lots of prayer about speaking up. My talker doesn't talk very well, especially later in the evenings. I am easily easily tongue tied. I'm a morning person.

 

Freedog read the comments on this thread last night when he got home and went to the links. We talked about it some this morning. I don't have much of an update today, but I'm posting anyhow. He said he would start another thread on the Men's forum.

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Yes, i started a thread on the Men working to win their wives hearts back forum. To answer you julie, no, I have not been looking at porn, men's mags, underware catalogs, glossy news paper ads, women's mags ..., haven't been self gratifying either since spring 2k09.

 

The goal is still Christ likeness and to be the husband Crystal needs, I really do mean that although i do understand Crystals doubts about that.

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I'm posting again today, to acknowledge that I'm here.

 

Today Freedog can hear and understand me. We'll count this as day number 1 and see how far he can go. Today I got a good night's sleep, (not so easy for me sometimes) and I'm rested and feel more patient, so Freedog has that in his favor, but that's OK. We had a bumpy start first thing this morning, but things got better. Before he went to work, he read to me from Livin' it and Lovin' it and though we've both read the book over and over again, we still heard new things in what he read. He was reading from the chapter on Help Meet. We had some discussion about what he read and he was able to state perfectly what my "complaints" have been about his behavior and he promises that he will continue to KNOW for the rest of the year and not just for a few days. He agrees that it's an easy concept: Listening and not absorbing. He claims he doesn't have a clue why it seems so confusing to him sometimes.

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Crystal;

So glad that Freedog stepped up a bit today; and started blessing you again! This is why it's so important for BOTH husband and wife to stay plugged in here; every day for awhile; to learn how to really work together as a godly helpmeet and Christlike husband should!

If loving you, blessing you, learning how to become a Christlike husband is REALLY important to Freedog; he'll do ANYTHING it takes to show you he's sincere in doing this; his actions will line up with his words! And listening in to as many calls a week as possible is a MUST for him right now; since he's having such a difficult time understanding and comprehending the very basic teaching of this ministry!

God bless you today; know this is so tough on wives to do sometimes!

Hope to hear you guys speak up on a call soon!

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For the record, yesterday was my day 2 of being treated well.

First thing we did yesterday was read aloud (Freedog read) from Livin' it and Lovin' it and then he read a post written by Kimberly to Rocky about venting. We had a good day with a few bumps, but overall, Freedog said "I love you" and "Thanks for pointing that out," more than just a few times. He was able to handle whatever I shared and I'm sorry to say I didn't ration, I piled it on, but he apparently handled it OK. I reminded him too that if he crashes after this, yesterday with the love and caring and concern and compassion will not feel to me like a fond memory, but like a gross lie.

 

It scares me that it takes less than 2 days for me to start feeling relaxed and loved. I'm enjoying it, but at the same time bracing myself for the inevitable crash. It's nice to see in the clear light what "bumps" look like as compared to crashes. I can deal with the bumps, they are altogether different. In the dark days I feel like I might be overreacting.

 

I like, no, I love Kathy's encouragement to Freedog on his thread.

 

Two days of me being treated well by Freedog is no occassion to celebrate. When it (being treated respectfully) lasts for 4 + days, maybe I will express some new praise. If he can keep it up for more than one week I think it will be a brand NEW thing for both of us. Of course I hope for longer than 7 days, but taking it one day at a time here and sharing it with you this time, so that I have witnesses.

Edited by Crystal
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Crystal;

So glad that you're staying connected here; really helps us know how to encourage both of you when we see such clear, honest posts like this; stating what the reality is for you guys day in and day out! We don't ask couples to do this so we can be nosy, or pry into anyone's private life; we are here only to help each of you learn this new way of connecting as a godly helpmeet and Christlike husband should! Great job from Freedog at loving and blessing you; will be praying that he'll continue being very consistent in following through; every day for the rest of his life; there's no time limit from God on how long husbands are supposed to treat their wives with Christlike, agape love!

Would encourage you both to get on one of the conference calls this weekend if at all possible; surely there is some time during the weekend when Freedog isn't working that he could join you on a call?

God bless you for continuing to be a great helpmeet here; have a wonderful weekend; hope that Freedog really pours life and love into your heart every minute!

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