Will my husband ever change?
“Resistance to change manifests itself in many ways, from foot-dragging and inertia to petty sabotage to outright rebellions.” Rosabeth Moss Kanter
Sometimes we expect our partners to know what it is we need. It’s so obvious to us, we can’t imagine how he couldn’t know. But the truth is we cannot carry resentments about our needs not being met if we haven’t expressed to our partners what it is we need. We know they can’t read our minds.
But what about when you have expressed what you need and still nothing has changed?...continue reading...
“Disagreement is acceptable. Disrespect is not.” Stephan Labossiere
Imagine for a moment, you’re in the next room while your daughter and her husband are having an argument. You’re listening-in because you’ve been worried that she might be in a verbally abusive relationship.
Every time your daughter tries to express what she’s feeling, she gets cut-off mid-sentence.
Her husband clearly is far more interested in yelling than talking in a reasonable tone of voice. He’s clearly more interested in talking AT her than he is in listening TO her. He is more interested in blaming her for the issue than ...continue reading...
“The urge to blame is based…on the fear of being blamed.” Douglas Stone
In our marriages, it seems the conversation we avoid the most are the very ones we most need to be having with our partners. There’s a lot going either unsaid between or unheard.
Maybe we tried having the conversation previously and it didn’t go well.
Maybe we’re afraid saying what needs to be said will only worsen the relationship.
Maybe we’ve given up hope that anything will ever change.
We avoid having difficult conversations with our partners because almost no one enjoys confrontation, and we ...continue reading...
“People can’t change the truth, but the truth can change people.” Drake
My client, who I’ll refer to as Naomi shared something important with me recently: She said she realized how she was using her children as a means of avoiding closeness with her husband.
When they would all be walking together, the kids were in the middle between them.
When they would hand out together in the kitchen around the island, she noticed how she always seemed to be on the opposite side of the island closest to her children.
Even in bed, the kids often fell ...continue reading...
When my client, who I’ll refer to as Vicky began working with me, she was trying to determine if there was any hope for her marriage that had been on the ropes for years. They were separated and ready to file papers, but she was still holding on and wasn’t sure why.One week later, her husband told her that from his perspective, he was done and the marriage was over. As you can imagine, the finality of that sent her reeling…thinking she had just wasted the last twenty years with a man who didn’t love her anymore. After the shock ...continue reading...
“Continents drift and so do hearts.” John Mark Green
In my marriage and relationship coaching practice, people reach out to me when their marriages have been struggling for years or even decades. Their relationships have become so unbearable that they’re considering leaving the marriage and are feeling paralyzed in fear because they don’t know how to fix the marriage and make it better, but they don’t know how to leave either. They tell me they feel stuck, sad, alone, scared and disconnected.
One of the questions I ask these people in my first discussion with them is, “What will ...continue reading...
“Being both soft and strong is an accomplishment that very few have mastered.” Yasmin Mogahed
In my first marriage, I was a woman who was strong and capable and driven. I was a marketing executive climbing the corporate ladder who led large teams of people and prided herself on being the one who could GSD (aka: Get Shit Done).
As you can imagine, there is no “off” switch that helped me to soften on my way home to my husband after work each night, so I unconsciously brought that same controlling energy and GSD approach into my marriage. ...continue reading...
“If I was meant to be controlled, I would have come with a remote.” Genereux Philip
Many of my clients have controlling husbands.
Their husbands are afraid that their wives are not being fully honest, so they watch their every move and monitor their phones.
Their husbands are afraid that their wives will spend too much or spend on something they don’t agree with buying, so they control the finances.
Their husbands are afraid of what other people will think if their picture-perfect life changes.
It goes the other way too; sometimes women attempt to control their husband’s ...continue reading...
“The only way love can last a lifetime is if it’s unconditional.” Stephen Kendrick
Loving unconditionally is easy to say, living it is so much more difficult.
When my husband is telling me how beautiful I am and doing the things that make me happy, I am loving toward him and think loving thoughts about him. When he does something that makes me feel hurt or tells how frustrated he is with me, I shut down or punch back and become hurtful in return.
That’s loving conditionally.
When we feel heard and understood, that feels like standing in ...continue reading...
“When you know you are of worth, you don’t have to raise your voice, you don’t have to become rude, you don’t have to become vulgar; you just are. And you are like the sky is, as the air is, the same way water is wet. It doesn’t have to protest.” Maya Angelou
If we are setting boundaries, people won’t like us.
If we use our voices to express out loud what is and is not okay, people will want to silence us.
If we set healthy boundaries, others will think we’re bitchy or bossy.
We avoid confrontation ...continue reading...