2014 Conference – Questions from Women
You have to really want to forgive and trust and you have to sincerely ask God to help you forgive and trust. There does have to be some natural changes that occur from the spouse that was unfaithful. They have to be willing to change the habits that led to being unfaithful. They need to relinquish all secrecy and allow their spouse to be their accountability partner. The couple has to start engaging in a plan that brings them together more often doing things that both of them enjoy. The spouse that is trying to forgive and trust again also needs to be willing to meet their spouse’s physical needs as well or you can be setting them up for failure again. Ultimately if the two of you are following the plan of recovery, you will need to rely on the power God has put in you by Holy Spirit to forgive as God has forgiven you and you will need to strengthen your relationship with God.
This is a dilemma today with the business of our marriages and our lives. Our suggestion to you is to come up with a plan that your spouse gives you some (Me) time before the night gets too late. Maybe after dinner you can go and take a bubble bath while he reads to the children, which will allow you to refresh for some love making once the children have gone to bed.
Blended families normally need a third party who is knowledgeable on blended families to assist them because no two situations in a blended family are the same. It was never God’s best or intentions but because it is so prevalent in society today we have to learn how to work it out. The ultimate goal in any marriage is to have a husband and wife love each other the way God would have them to and that means being first place in each other’s lives. Then they need to make decisions for the family that are agreed upon by the both of them and thus present a unified front to the children. Whenever you love your child more than you love your spouse it opens up the door for disunity so you have to work really hard to stay on the same page for the sake of the family. In most blended families it takes some time before you can even come close to loving your new spouse like you love your children. The spouse is new and the children have always been there, but it must be a goal to gain that love for your new spouse for unity to exist.
Do you want to be alone or do you want a man? Do you want to push him away or do you want to assist him in becoming the man you desire? It is a tough position to be in if this is where your marriage is, but if this is the choice you made you must begin helping the situation and not harming the situation. By telling a man what he is not or what he can’t do, you are not helping him to get there. You need to use words of faith and encouragement. You need to talk with him in a way that shares what you would like for him to do without sounding critical of who he is presently. God has designed you to help him and you are well qualified to get the job done, but you must use wise strategies. You have the helper on the inside of you that can show you how to help him and thus help your situation.
2014 Conference – Questions from Men
Impossible! Women are just wired in a way that they beat around the bush when they say something because they are trying to control the possible response you might give them. They don’t want the wrong things to be said by you so they try to phrase their conversation in a way the leads to the best possible response from you. The more you make them comfortable with talking to you the better it can get, but they use a different side of the brain than you.
Give your wife a tag line which will be a sign to let you know when this is a fix it issue or when it is a just listen issue. Now as a man you have to still be willing to be as engaged in the conversation even though she is not looking for your solution. Some men have a tendency to not pay attention if they are not solving a problem. When you are engaged with your wife and she can speak freely with you it will cause high quality emotional connections with her so you don’t want to disengage if she says “I’m not looking for a solution, I just want you to hear me.”
Every night would be your wife’s response. Your response would probably be not that often. Her suggestion would be more along the lines of what it takes to have a successful marriage. You should at least try to date once a week. That doesn’t mean always spending money and sometimes it’s not even leaving the house, but it is quality time together doing something that the both of you enjoy. We know that children sometimes keep us from dating as often as we should but you have to make arrangements to date even during child rearing. Find trusting sitters that can watch the children while you work on your marriage because one day the children will leave and all you have is each other.