July 20, 2015
“My husband insists on access to my phone, Facebook, emails, and watches my spending like a hawk. I understand some of this. His last wife was apparently unfaithful. His suspicious ways are driving me crazy and driving us apart even though I have NOTHING TO HIDE. How do I get him to trust me more and to give me a little freedom?”
You cannot get him to trust you more. That’s his load, his burden. He has to face his problem and his challenge.
His “suspicious ways” are his issue. The harder you try to appease him the more he will make you work to prove you are trustworthy.
People do not desire privacy because they have something to hide. People desire privacy because it is a deep, profound human need.
Love and control – these are desperate attempts to control you – cannot live side-by-side in the same relationship.
Submitting to his immature acts of control will be helpful to neither of you.
If possible, meet with his previous wife. I am sure you will discover that his controlling ways played a part in the demise of his past marriage.
Stay out of control – change your passwords, and refuse.
Love loves freedom and you will never know it while you attempt to appease a controlling man.
December 26, 2014
What gifts will you offer yourself and others in 2015?
Here are mine…
I shall make every attempt to be clearer about what I need and what I want, knowing full well that clarity and definition on my part do not guarantee that I will get what I need and want.
I shall make every attempt to be softer and gentler with my opinions, clearer with my humor, and less terse when annoyed both in print and in person. Readers have been more gracious than I deserve in pointing out this necessity to me and my close friends have been kinder than I deserve in accommodating my strong views.
I will use my skills and my privileged platform to promote the gifts and the skills of others.
I will vet requests on my time more carefully than I have done in the past so that I may give myself more fully to the things I love and to the things about which I am passionate.
I will look for the treasure in others, treasure that is so often hidden behind tough façades.
December 5, 2007
“I want to save my marriage. Our situation has risen to a new level with issues of jealously and trust. He takes my car keys, he checks up on me, I no longer have friends around, and am no longer allowed ‘ladies nights.’ My brother is not allowed to visit. My husband doesn’t want children. He picks on me constantly. He complains that I don’t give him enough sex. He checks on my cash slips so I don’t spend too much money. I have the urge to run and run. I was independent and a professional artist but he took it away. I am constantly walking on eggshells not to upset him. He turns things around so I look bad. Please help. (Minimal edits for space)
Dance on the eggshells, invite your brother, and make a spare set of car keys, invite friends to visit, go out as often as you want. Initiate sex only when YOU want sex. Take back your power or this will never be a marriage. Control is never love so stay out of it. Get your life back: you are a wife, not a prisoner. His jealousy is HIS issue. Don’t make it yours. Until you focus on your behavior and not on his, this marriage will not improve.
October 25, 2007
“My wife spends a lot of time at home because of family commitments and I understand that she needs to circulate with other people. When she does go out she seems to go over the top and stays out late. She doesn’t want to talk to, stating that she knows everything about me. When she spends a lot of time with other men, I tend to get jealous. I have been married before and I am scared that my wife will leave me for another man which is what happened in my previous marriage. She says she loves me but I don’t know whether of not to believe her. I am really fighting with my self internally to give her the space she requires and to not stifle her. Is there some things I might read, or things I should do to try and releive my fear, or try and get to the bottom of how she feels.”
Getting to the bottom of how you feel is sufficiently difficult, let alone trying to get to the bottom of how she feels. Leave her feelings alone. Read David Schnarch’s Passionate Marriage. The book will help you see where you end and she begins – that is what is at the core of your troubles.
October 2, 2007
“Three years ago our pre-marriage counselor used a few of your columns to get us talking. I was annoyed because they made our engagement seem so business-like and so un-romantic. It seemed very cold to discuss money when you feel so in love. Now I can see how important it was to talk about money and children and faith as if I was entering a business relationship. Thanks. You have helped us a lot.” (Edited)
Perceiving a marriage as having many elements of a business contract will enhance, and not detract, from a marriage relationship. The absence of money (fights over money, the misuse of money) in a marriage can quickly kill any feelings of romance and goodwill. “Cold” talks during an engagement can help warm a home for many years to come. He or she, who, during marriage preparation refuses to engage in such talk, is declaring loudly and clearly that he or she is not quite ready for marriage. I am most honored your counselor used some of my work to assist you in you marriage.