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September 15, 2014

After reading my last blog entry, (Divorce Predictors, September 4th 2014), Hilda wrote:

“I get that the marriages you describe are in jeopardy, but what now? Can these marriages ever be saved?”

Sometimes they can, Hilda. Some people learn from their bad experiences and move on to healthier relationships with or without their current partner.

Others don’t take the time, or even have the inclination to take a change-challenge. For them, things are likely to remain the same.

It’s too often a case of “different car, same trip”. (Somebody else must have said that too!)

For now, let’s suppose “Jeff’s” wife had actually left him and that he had been blind-sighted. Suppose Jeff came for some advice on how he might win his wife back.

“I’ll do anything,” he said. There must be something I could do.”

Truth is, it may have already been too late.

Women don’t throw in the towel easily, but when they do for real, they’re really done. I would have to meet “Holly,”

I believed Jeff when he said something had “clicked” and that this time he’d gotten the message. It became clear that this marriage had once been great and that he did not want to lose Holly.

The first intervention: Damage control. His inclination had been to beg, which was a bad idea.

Besides which, he couldn’t stop crying.

Women need their men to be strong. Jeff would know that too, if not for his desperate state. Begging, of course, would be a total turnoff.

Instead, I suggested he write his wife a letter. A love letter, in fact, about his commitment to her, to himself and to their marriage.

His words could describe how he had decided to embark on a personal change-challenge … to become the kind of man he chooses to be and that she also deserves.

Thank her for shaking up your world, Jeff. And write about how you hope that one day, she would want to open up her heart to you again.

Then after you send the letter, back off. LEAVE HOLLY ALONE.

If this marriage had any chance of survival, Jeff needed to change his focus onto himself. He needed to give Holly the space she needs and the opportunity to heal.

“But I can’t think of anything but her. How can I stay away?”

Try This…

Burn off some frustration, I would say. Work out. Think of what you can do to make yourself more attractive. Put more energy into your work. Think like a winner. Be reflective. Reach out to your male buddies.

If you feel like a winner, you’ve got a chance with Holly. If, however, it is too late, some other woman might send her a thank you note, one day.

Think about that.


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