(This is the second of a four-part series; here are the links to part1, part 3, & part 4.)
In my last post, I started addressing a question or two put to me by a reader asking if it is kosher to consider sexual refusal as a valid reason for divorce, a la adultery. After all, he correctly noted, it only takes one act to commit adultery, whereas refusal is a long-term situation. At what point does it become “sexual immorality,” he asked. In fact, he asked that question again in response to my One Coin, Two Sides post:
There is a slight problem with the abandonment is equal to adultery argument in my opinion. The act of adultery along with sexual abuse (may as well throw that in for good measure) is sustained by a single act. A single act of adultery would be grounds for divorce and a single act of sexual abuse could mean a lengthy stay in jail. Now clearly a single act of refusal, even though it may be a break of the marriage covenant, wouldn’t even raise an eyebrow in most circles.
So when does refusal become abandonment and then possibly/maybe grounds for divorce,1-day, 2-weeks, 3-months, 9-months….?
In my post Curing vs. Healing, I discussed a fourth possible source for marital disconnect (separate from TAG), that of your own unintentional actions causing hurt and damage in the relationship. I made the recommendation that you read Chris Taylor’s (of Forgiven Wife) guest post, A Wife’s Heart, and our following discussion in order to learn how unintentional actions can cause rifts in a marriage.
That said, I want to offer a couple of caveats. Yes, if you discover that you are a source for the disconnect in your relationship, do make an effort to heal the rift. However, do not take on a burden that is not yours; own your actions, not her excuses. Continue reading
As a niche blogger addressing sexless marriages, most of my writing has been about bad situations that husbands (and denied wives) find themselves in. And as someone who suffers from that very male affliction, I-Can-Fix-This-itis, many of my posts not only address the problems, but give advice and solutions on how to work to address and change these situations. I’m the type of person that believes it doesn’t matter how much you want to talk about The Nail, removing the nail will solve the problem of headaches.
I do, however, understand that fixing is not the same as restoring, that curing is not the same thing as healing. They just aren’t the same. Continue reading
(Just a warning: lots of links. I mean, LOTS of links.)
I know that football is supposedly America’s favorite sport but I love to watch baseball. Baseball fans know that when a baserunner is tagged, he is out. But it hit me the other day that for many who find themselves in sexless marriages, it happens that when one spouse is TAG-ged, it is the other one who is out. As in, “out of luck.”
In my reading, whether it be other blogs or other forums, or even comments in response here on my blog, I see situations in which spouses are suffering in their marriage because of the attitudes, behaviors, and choices of their spouses. This goes both ways, with both husbands and wives being recipients of being TAG-ged.
TAG-ged?!? “CSL, have you been hitting the BBQ sauce again?” No. That just my acronym for a common marital affliction. In my readings, it seems that there are three common problems one spouse may bring into the marriage and it ends up wreaking havoc in the relationship. Continue reading
Many years ago, I made the following observation: Sermonizing is the sin of the deadly earnest, no matter what theological colors you may be wearing. As I have aged, all that I’ve observed of the world around me convinces me that I was wonderfully prescient back then.
For example, if your theology is Global Warming, then you come at the debate with the fervor of an Al Gore, demanding that anyone who disagrees with you be locked up or sent to re-education camps. And if your theology is abortion, then “By Billy Bedamned Hangtree, keep your laws off my body! Sorry, Kiddo, it sucks to be you ‘cause Mama wants to shake her groove thang!” Continue reading
In my last post, I commented on how refused husbands could relate to and apply the wisdom and knowledge that Chris Taylor, of Forgiven Wife, poured into her blogpost, “I Promise, I’ll Do Better.”
The first part of her post dealt with questions she recommended that a recovering refuser think about asking her husband in order to be intentional in rebuilding their marriage. She told how after discussions or fights about intimacy, she would say to her husband, “I promise, I’ll do better,” but not know what ‘Better’ looked like. I suggested that when refused spouses are given that amorphous promise, they start thinking about what ‘Better’ would actually look like. So, in this episode I want to present a couple of thoughts on her further suggestions about planning and communicating with your wife after your discussion.
As I said in my last post, I’m finding a goodly number of tweets from other marriage/sexuality bloggers showing up on my Twitter feed with links to their articles or archives. Recently, one link led me to an old post from Chris Taylor/The Forgiven Wife that I felt needed to be brought to the attention of refused husbands who read this blog.
For those of you not familiar with the Forgiven Wife blog, it is written by a wife who admits to being a gatekeeper and refuser in the past, but has been on a journey of marital reconciliation and restoration for some years now. Her blog is a ministry to wives who are wanting to make this same journey. She does write for women, and freely admits that her posts aren’t for husbands.
However, the old post that came across my Twitter feed is one that I think husbands should read and think about. Continue reading
Dropping another veil, here, folks. Here in the CSL household, resides a tribe of Anglophiles. We purely love British programs, etc. Our collection of Dickensian dramas is second to none. So you can imagine the joy with which Wife and I, as Downton Abbey fans, greeted the issuing of the show’s last season on DVD. Since we have Netflix, we are getting the DVDs and going through all the old seasons, to watch them as one whole story.
This week, in going back to the beginning, I was surprised by a scene that I remembered only after viewing it again. In the scene, Lord Grantham makes a comment about his oldest daughter, Lady Mary, who, just to spite her sister Edith, ignored the one man who cares for her in order to flirt with a man who showed interest in Edith. When her would-be suitor observes Mary’s conduct, he leaves, keenly feeling her slight. Mary only realizes what she has done after his departure and it is then that Lord Grantham comments about his daughter’s conduct:
“Mary can be such a child. She thinks that when she puts a toy down, it will still be there when she wants to play with it.”
Earlier this month, I wrote a post entitled Truly Miserable?, in which I basically told some readers that they aren’t ready to follow my blog; after all, I said, it’s only when you are truly miserable in your marriage, when you recognize that you can’t take anymore, that you decide to NOT take anymore. Until then, you will take it. Readers of my blog know that this is no new revelation. After all, I’ve even created my own abbreviation to describe this, and wrote a post about it: IYADWYAD, YAGWYAG™.
A husband made a comment to that post saying that in 25 years of marriage, talking to his wife about their problems didn’t work because she always attacked him, turning his words back on him in anger. With tongue only half in cheek did I respond “If talking doesn’t work, try walking.” And then I promised him that I would write a post about Therapeutic Distancing.
This is that post. Continue reading
For review purposes, here is what Chris Taylor, of Forgiven Wife, suggested (via email) I write for refused husbands:
How can a guy cope with a sex hiatus other than simply taking care of physical release on his own?
Whether he is giving time to a wife who is making genuine effort to work through some issues, creating a crisis but not yet seeing results, or trying to work on himself so he is sufficiently prepared for WW III, if he is not having sex, he is without an important connection. How does he cope with that mentally and emotionally?
Guys, for this Interim Period™, this period of waiting to see how things will go, you have to think in terms of You. Your main concern isn’t going to be about fixing your marriage, it’s going to be about fixing you. I’ve explained, in my previous posts about the need to get your mind and heart cleansed and cleared. Now, I want to address your needs during this period. Continue reading