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Valora

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  • #318593

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Mark,

    Did your wife ever discuss the idea of her mom coming to live with you or her feelings that she will be responsible for taking care of her when you were dating?  If not, I agree with Anita about her taking advantage, as that’s something that should have been disclosed at some point over the time before you got married.  If you had discussed it, it’s possible that she assumed you’d be okay with it and wasn’t trying to trick you (although she definitely still should’ve discussed it with you again before moving her in).

    If you give her an ultimatum, just be prepared for the possibility of her choosing her mom. I hope she will go to counseling with you if you’re able to find a counselor because I think it would help some if she understood your feelings on this, too. Even though her mother never gets in the way, I can totally understand how her presence in the house would be awkward, especially since she doesn’t speak the same language. I would not voluntarily enter a situation like that either, and I think it’s important for your wife to know and understand your feelings on this, and if she cannot respect them, you might be better off apart.

    #318217

    Valora
    Participant

    I think you should just explain to him what you explained here. You can soften it if you want by telling him you love spending time with him and understand why he wants to come, but you really want to dedicate the week solely to professional development so that you can get the most out of it that you possibly can, and you don’t want him to feel neglected or to worry about not giving him enough attention. Hopefully he will understand, because I think what you want is reasonable.

    #317971

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Lily!

    I totally agree with Peggy, that is great advice. I also want to say that when we experience boredom, depression, or unhappiness with our lives in general, our relationships are often the first thing to be targeted and cut, thinking that is the problem, when often it’s something more internal that you’re not happy with. Trying Peggy’s suggestions first is definitely the way to go, and if, after you are feeling better overall in the other areas of your life, you are still having doubts about your relationship, that’s when you should reassess it. Given that you’re feeling unhappy overall, though, it’s probably not your relationship that is the problem, and ending it at this point likely won’t help. What WILL help is self-care. And see if you can find a hobby that you enjoy so much that it absolutely lights you up.

    #317949

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Felix!

    It’s likely she keeps rejecting boys because she hasn’t found any that she connects with in that way, and it’s possible she’s the type of girl who doesn’t mind being single, so she will stay single until she finds that connection. If she doesn’t feel that connection with you after being such close friends already, I would not count on it ever happening.

    Do you think it’s possible that you keep feeling like she wants to get your attention because that’s what you are hoping for? It would make you feel good if that were true? It seems to me, though, if she wanted your attention, she would just message you because you haven’t blocked her or asked for time apart yet, right?

    I think the best way for you to get over this is to look at the situation exactly as it is without reading into anything. If you are close friends and she isn’t making any effort to talk to you other than liking or commenting on social media (which typically doesn’t mean anything more than friendship to most people), it’s likely she isn’t interested in anything more with you and I wouldn’t assume or wonder if there’s more at this point, given her behavior. If she’s not interested as it is, you not looking at her stuff on social media won’t likely decrease your chances of her being interested, and you looking at her stuff won’t increase it either because it would’ve worked by now if that were the case. You’ve been active in her life for a long time and she still isn’t interested…. so I would quit worrying about what will or won’t affect her interest in you and just focusing on becoming your best self for you.

    If, in the future, when you are both older and she is out of high school, you two become close again and she seems more interested and ready to date, then I think it would okay to tell her how you feel, but as for right now, I would just try to move on, and, who knows, maybe you will attract someone you like even better and will forget all about her.

    #317515

    Valora
    Participant

    I just want to say I agree with Peggy, I think your real problem is that you’re focused on what you feel you don’t have rather than focusing on all of the things you do that are attractive… and I do not agree with Anita that your relationship is dead, necessarily, and I would not say she doesn’t love you. You haven’t really said enough about the situation for us to know that. I want to remind you of this, too:

     She seemed to feel that I was upset and she said she would become more careful about filtering her thoughts, which she has done and which I appreciate. As we talked though she avoided or deflected my real concern that she found me unattractive.

    You came to her with a concern and she said she would become more careful, and she has. That is her hearing you. She listened to what you said and responded in a way you appreciated. However, she likely avoided or deflected your concern because she didn’t want to hurt your feelings by whatever she’s feeling, especially once she realized her comments before were hurting you and you were upset, why would she want to hurt you more?

    Also, I do think you WERE able to come to her with your feelings because you DID and she changed her behavior. I think that says something good that’s worth noting.

    • This reply was modified 1 week ago by  Valora.
    #317349

    Valora
    Participant

    I remember your previous threads, as well, and I think it’s very important that you accept that she is not interested in you romantically. She is trying to be nice about it, though, by saying she’s just not interested in dating. That is her trying to let you down easy without hurting your feelings, but if someone comes along that she is truly interested in dating, be prepared for her to start dating him.

    I am telling you this because I want you to realize that you blocking her for your own self-care is not going to affect whether or not she dates or gets close someone else in the future. That is likely going to happen regardless of what you do, but you will probably feel less pain when she does if you take the time to detach from her some. So I would just explain to her that you need time apart, then block her on all outlets and don’t talk to her for a while, at least until you are able to stop thinking about her all the time, are feeling better, and have accepted that she is not interested.

    #317121

    Valora
    Participant

    Peck,

    I really like and appreciate that you’re taking the time to think and respond rather than react. That’s a REALLY excellent quality that a lot of people don’t have, and I bet it’s one of the things your partner loves about you. That action alone gives you a ton of value.

    #316981

    Valora
    Participant

    I think when I say I’m insecure about my looks, what I mean is that I feel invisible, and I so want to be seen. And maybe if the woman who loves me doesn’t see me anymore, or perhaps never did see me as I hoped to be seen, then I have to let go of the hope that anyone ever will. And I don’t believe that words spring from my mind accidentally. When I write “seen” I suspect I mean the word more broadly than as it pertains to seeing or attractiveness. Being noticed too. Important? Worthy? Real?

    Have you ever heard of love languages?  It seems, from what you’ve been saying in your posts, that yours is words. You tell your partner that she is attractive and you so wish that she would tell you that she finds you attractive, because that’s how you would know and feel it.

    The thing is with attractiveness from strangers or even friends, you wouldn’t know whether they noticed you unless they came up and told you that they did, right? There could have been plenty of people who noticed you throughout your life and thought you were handsome, but if your mind was focused on feeling invisible, you wouldn’t notice them noticing you unless they told you directly, which people don’t often do (unless you’re a woman in a bar filled with drunk men. haha). But I think women as a whole often don’t go up to male strangers or even male friends and say they find them attractive. So you probably don’t even realize how many people have “seen” you over the years because people haven’t came up to you and told you, so as far as your mind was concerned, it just didn’t happen because it didn’t have solid proof in words. Does that make sense?

    Check out the love languages when you get a minute and see if the words one resonates with you. It might also be a way for you to tell your partner what you need from her. Even if she works on verbalizing any of the wonderful qualities that makes her want to be in a relationship with you, I think that would surely help you to feel better.

    #316977

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Peck,

    What I was talking about in my post was not to not talk about your feelings, because being able to talk about those things without judgment is important… what I was saying was for you to do what you need to do to GENUINELY feel more confident, to not depend on her views for you to feel confidence. If you felt genuinely confident, you wouldn’t really have so much of a need to talk to her about it because you’d feel confident without her validation, and then that would give off a confident energy, which is attractive by nature.  That’s an energy you can’t fake, though. You truly have to feel confident/attractive for yourself, no matter what anyone else thinks. And attractiveness, especially for women, is not all about physical characteristics… it’s everything else, too. The whole package. So improve what things you can (that bother you specifically, not anyone else) and accept what you can’t improve and build your confidence from there.

    I still say it’s possible either she has a low libido or maybe was feeling unattractive herself, so she was trying to bring you down with her. That’s what is generally going on, I think, when people nitpick others.

    #316923

    Valora
    Participant

    Honestly, I really think the healthier thing to do for the kids would be to separate completely but get them into counseling so that they have someone to talk to and can learn healthy coping mechanisms related to this situation..  If the parents stay living together for the kids’ sake, they probably shouldn’t date other people for the kids’ sake either, because them dating other people is also likely going to have a negative effect. They may have to accept that they cannot separate without it having SOME negative effect on the kids, and if they are completely worried about them being damaged, they need to just stay together for the next 13 years. This whole thing seems well intentioned but still unhealthy as it’s likely to set an odd example for the kids growing up and can you imagine what their friends are going to say when they get older?  I guess it depends on the country though, I don’t know much of the culture in Croatia, so perhaps this is more normal there? Still, it might be a good idea that they at least talk to a psychologist who specializes in children’s clinical psychology to get an opinion on what is actually the best thing to do in this situation if they don’t want to stay together and committed only to each other.

    I’m so sorry to hear about your job situation. Perhaps if you do end up moving, you will find better options that will be more stable commitment-wise in the place you move to.

    #316911

    Valora
    Participant

    I’m quite a bit younger than you guys and haven’t experienced such a long-term relationship, but I kind of feel like the loss of physical attraction is somewhat common as people age, as unfortunate as that is, so it’s possible she might not find you as physically attractive as she once did, especially if you’ve changed a lot in appearance over the last 20 years. She also might be experiencing a drop in libido in general and may have said those things because she doesn’t have much interest in sex, so they were said as a way to repel you from her physically rather than attract you. In that case, it might really not have anything to do with you at all.

    My advice in this case might not be very helpful probably because I’m not sure what can be done to change it (unless you have let go of yourself, in which case, doing Anita’s suggestions above of working out, dressing better, etc., would probably work wonders), but it might be helpful at least for your emotional state to fully accept that this is a natural flow for many relationships as people get older and many tend to lose physical attractiveness. It says absolutely nothing about your worth or value as a person or to her as she is still with you and seems as if she wants to be with you, so even though she doesn’t vocalize it, I’m sure she finds a lot of value in having a relationship with you, and it might help you to feel better emotionally if you focus on that instead, at least in the way of self-esteem.

    Actually, if your self-esteem has been low, that can reduce attractiveness as well, so it might be helpful to rebuild confidence by shifting your own focus to all of your other wonderful attributes and what you have to offer, which is actually worlds more important to women than physical attractiveness, believe it or not. Her attraction toward you is far more likely to come back (because that is something that can come and go, too) if you are showing real confidence…. unless it’s a low libido thing for her, in which case her lack of attraction is stemming from her own issues.

    #316887

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Natalija,

    I’m 37 and single, so I get what you’re saying about dating (although I’m really not looking and have a lot of guy friends that treat their girls very, very well), but I would still definitely look at this situation as objectively (and nonemotionally) as you can because it’s likely to blow up on someone (or all of you) in the future if it doesn’t change, which would mean he’s not actually much better than the other guys you’ve been out with if you’re still ending up in a bad or hurtful situation. I think it’s a good idea to give it more time, though, if you’re truly unclear. I’m sort of just hoping they will change their minds, and I’m sure you are too, but there are no guarantees with this, and 13 years is a REALLY long time. Maybe he isn’t thinking in terms of just how long that is either and isn’t fully grasping it.

    If he does get counseling, it might be good to talk to a counselor or psychologist about the effects on children in situations like this, if it’s REALLY better for them for the parents to stay living together while dating other people or if it’s actually healthier to really separate. I’d have to wonder if any studies have been done on this.

    #316885

    Valora
    Participant

    If I may ask you another question before I give my thoughts…. if you don’t feel she is attracted to you physically, do you know what attracts her to you emotionally?  Given that she’s with you and has stayed with you for 20 years and shows really no signs of wanting to leave (based on what you’ve said), she must really love you and many of your qualities.

    #316789

    Valora
    Participant

    One thing I’m sure is that he has absolutely no intention in ever getting close with her again (she truly betrayed him and his trust), so that’s something I’m not worried about… but this 13 years…is just not something I would be ready to wait for our relationship to be…public and that we could live together than. If this would be heading in some serious direction.

    The thing is with intentions… they aren’t always what happens. He may not have intentions in the present, but a lot of change and growth can occur in a person in 13 years, and he will be right there with her to witness all of it. The feeling of betrayal tends to get less over time, especially if they are on good speaking terms and continue to make new positive memories/experiences. I’m not saying he’d go back with her either, but what I am saying is it’s much more likely for them to fall back together when they’re living with each other than it would be if they weren’t.

    Also, are you the first one he’s dated since they split or have their been others, and has she seemed jealous in any way if there were others?

    It certainly is a tricky situation, and only you can decide what’s right for you. But just know there are a lot of other guys out there who treat their ladies with respect and care, so I would think carefully about the emotional turmoil you might experience from this guy years down the road, when you’re tired of living apart and ready for the next step in your relationship, but you can’t get there because he told you right from the beginning that he will be living with his ex-wife for the next 13 years. If you think you’ll get to a point where this will be too much for you to deal with, it might be better to look elsewhere for someone else who will show you the same level of respect and care. They’re out there.

    #316729

    Valora
    Participant

    It seems that this looks worse than it is in some ways. He did get over the breakup at least on a conscious level. And he was talking about it at the beginning of our relationship to let me know about his situation. It’s not like he is talking about it all the time. So…basically it sounded all right…but…there is obviously some problem if he cannot get intimate now.

    Okay, I think that makes the difference, if he was just going into detail to explain the situation to you, although I do think he has some underlying anxieties or pain that he might not realize he has if it’s affecting his ability to be intimate, so he might still need some counseling or at least some major self-reflection to figure that out.

    About the living situation, yes, they decided to stay and live together until kids would both be 18. That’s a long long time. And they probably didn’t think about how this will affect their dating life or possible relationships. It’s like they decided to sacrifice all that for the sake of the kids. Which sounds fine…but…like some of you said I’m sure kids will get to understand something is not right since they sleep in different rooms.

    However, they are very mature about everything and decent with each other. They communicate normally and the breakup was handled quite well. So the kids are getting all the love and care from them. That’s probably a good thing.

    No matter how mature they’re being right now, I just can’t see this not blowing up in their faces, especially when relationships with other people come into play. Is his ex-wife in a serious relationship, yet?

    Also, are the kids supposed to know they’re dating other people or are they going to hide this from them until the kids are 18, and if the kids know, will they be building relationships with the other significant others? It’s just a really weird example to set for the kids, if you think about it.  On one hand, it’s nice that they won’t have to go back and forth between houses and will see their parents being fairly amicable in the same house, but it’s also sort of setting unrealistic expectations for how well people can work together and I will be surprised if the parents will be able to live together so amicably once they both get into serious relationships, because if there’s one thing I’ve learned about stepparents when having to deal with my kids’ dads’ wives, it’s that they like a certain amount of control, too, and you’re not always going to agree with them. It can turn into a mess.

    It might be okay to continue to live together for now, but I can see this not working for that long, definitely not for 13 years. And think about that number… because the youngest is 5…. would you want to be with someone who lives with his ex rather than you for 13 years??  And who’s to say they won’t fall back for each other again in those 13 years in such close quarters?

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