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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-15-2007, 01:51 PM   #21
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

You said adding another woman to the mix would not be good for the kids? I think you're wrong there! They've had front row seats to a relationship that didn't work and ended in divorce, now is your chance to find the right person and show them that it is possible to have a wonderful loving relationship that lasts. Keep the lines of communication open and friendly between you and the ex for the kids, show them that although a divorce is not the thing you want to do that it can work and that you are both there for them. Also that anyone you bring into this family (wife/partner) is also there for them, not to replace the other parent but as an addition to their family.

I went through the bad divorce of my parents, it wasn't pretty and us kids were the rope in the tug of war.

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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-15-2007, 01:57 PM   #22
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute 'n Fuzzy Bunny
Its been my experience that women rarely fall "back in love". Women have a complex array of attachments of which a man is simply one thread, usually easily cut. Men have a fairly simple and limited number of attachments and while we play the macho role, we have a great deal of difficulty cutting one of those attachments.

Fire away, its a generalization.

I would suggest that given she went through the whole divorce process and having now experienced the pain and suffering associated with that procedure, and having lived a full year on her own...and still turning down your suggestions for reconciliation?

Its over. Move on with your life.
Best advise so far.
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-15-2007, 01:58 PM   #23
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Quote:
Originally Posted by HaHa
The Bunny has the wisdom of Solomon.
A lot of stupid things done in a lot of stupid relationships formed for stupid reasons with a lot of stupid people while being stupid myself.
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-15-2007, 02:04 PM   #24
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Sorry to have given offense, it was just your phrasing that made me wonder just how persistent you were in the asking:
"On the other other other hand, I would say that a guy should always respect a girl saying "no" in terms of a physical relationship, and it seems that at some point the same should hold true romantically. I guess sort of a question to the ladies here is this: If you say "no, never with you" to a guy who is interested in you romantically, when should he persist and when should he stop?"

I didn't mean to imply you were in fact stalking her, but just wanted you to be sensitive to the "when should he persist" part that might make the alarm bells ring in a woman's head. I've had friends that considered that sort of thing harassement.

Sorry about that. I wouldn't think you'd really be a stalker!
Sarah
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-15-2007, 02:13 PM   #25
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

I had the same red blinking light on the dashboard. Not blinking too fast or too bright, but it was there. One of those vague "check engine" things that might mean a loose dipstick or gas cap, but might also mean something more serious.

The movie theater idea of the demure woman finally "giving in" to a persistent suitor has very little basis in modern times.

So when I hear someone saying they feel a certain way but the object of their interest doesnt share that feeling...but they plan to keep trying...that dashboard light comes on.
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-15-2007, 02:20 PM   #26
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Quote:
Originally Posted by retiredbop
2Cor521, that marriage is over. Move on. The time to save it was BEFORE the papers were filed. Stop deluding yourself and concentrate on starting over. Concentrate on being the best single parent and role model you can for those kids, and make sure theyunderstand it's not their fault the marriage fell apart. Don't into negativity about the ex either. That's really not productive for the kids.
I've been doing both (not their fault, no negativity about the ex) on advice from the court and my church divorce group and several good friends.

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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-15-2007, 02:31 PM   #27
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute 'n Fuzzy Bunny
I had the same red blinking light on the dashboard. Not blinking too fast or too bright, but it was there. One of those vague "check engine" things that might mean a loose dipstick or gas cap, but might also mean something more serious.

The movie theater idea of the demure woman finally "giving in" to a persistent suitor has very little basis in modern times.

So when I hear someone saying they feel a certain way but the object of their interest doesnt share that feeling...but they plan to keep trying...that dashboard light comes on.
CFB, Sarah,

Thank you for the replies. I can see where what I wrote would come across that way. I know both personally and third-hand several stories of men who were persistent but respectful and the woman came around and the couple is (at least on the surface) happily married; but on reflection that is probably the extreme minority of all relationships and certainly of successful marriages.

To be even more honest, the dashboard light probably came on because I was always insecure in our relationship. My ex-wife is incredibly gorgeous, smart, funny, loyal (well, to a point, obviously), and against all sorts of odds acted in love with me and pursued me, a skinny nerd of a guy. I was always afraid she would wake up and say, "Heeeey, wait a minute...." It didn't dawn on me until much later that this kind of insecurity is quite unattractive. I think that whole aspect of our relationship and me comes across in my writing here.

I guess I justify my consideration of the idea of persisting some more with the fact that she did marry me and stick with me for 15.5 years. There must have been something there, right? If I was just starting to date someone and they said "no, never", I would probably persist a lot less. Yes, I know I'm starting to sound like a whiny puppy again...

2Cor521
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-15-2007, 02:41 PM   #28
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Quote:
And I don't want to sound or look like a whiny little puppy dog, which I would have had I asked any time over the summer.
You've hit the nail on the head -- the ONE thing you cannot do is whine. It sounds to me like you've been doing the right thing here -- giving her space -- but that it's still painful, you're hurting, the pain is not going away as fast as you thought it would, and you're starting to lose your resolve.

Don't do it!

The irony here is that the more you act as though you need her back, the weaker and more whiny you look, and the more unattractive. The more you fail to respect her saying "no" to you now, the more you remind her of the other times when you were (in her mind) disrespectful of her needs.

On the other hand, the better you look as a loving father, respectful new partner, and overall healthy guy, the better you look to others AND to her.

IMHO, you have been doing the right thing -- what you need to do now is MORE of it, not less.

It's counter-intuitive, but the best thing you can do is to focus elsewhere. How can you be a better and more loving father to your kids -- overall and during this upheaval? What would you be doing to improve yourself if you believed that you'd be looking for another partner someday? What self-improvement for your own sake (health, fitness, education, etc.) have you been putting off?

Even if you've had counseling with the wife, you might seriously consider going on your own to figure out WHY you a) didn't appreciate what you had until it was too late b) picked the wrong person in the first place c) didn't notice the warning signs, d) didn't have the tools to fix what was wrong, etc. etc. (I'm making this up -- fill in the blanks with whatever YOU think you might have done differently.)

At best, your ex will come to see you with new eyes and think you're worth another try. (Highly unlikely, but stranger things have happened.) At worst, you'll be happier with yourself, more in tune with who you are, more in touch with your kids, and more likely to succeed with a new person once you're ready.

One last comment -- if you think your parents are heartless and insensitive, there's even MORE reason to focus on your kids and what's happening to them right now -- you do NOT want a repeat performance in your generation.

Whatever you do, good luck with it. I know its painful, but you DO live through it, even if it doesn't feel like it at the time.

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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-15-2007, 04:53 PM   #29
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Caroline,

Everything you wrote was dead on. Thanks for the help.

2Cor521
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-15-2007, 06:01 PM   #30
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Caroline
You've hit the nail on the head -- the ONE thing you cannot do is whine. It sounds to me like you've been doing the right thing here -- giving her space -- but that it's still painful, you're hurting, the pain is not going away as fast as you thought it would, and you're starting to lose your resolve.

Don't do it!

The irony here is that the more you act as though you need her back, the weaker and more whiny you look, and the more unattractive. The more you fail to respect her saying "no" to you now, the more you remind her of the other times when you were (in her mind) disrespectful of her needs.
Absolutely true. If you really want her back, be seen around town having fun with the most attractive woman you can get to go out with you. Word will get back to her, she will probably become jealous and realize what a great guy you were, and then you MIGHT have shot. OTOH, maybe you'll have so much fun with the new woman that you'll forget about the ex . . .
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-16-2007, 12:08 PM   #31
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick
Absolutely true. If you really want her back, be seen around town having fun with the most attractive woman you can get to go out with you. Word will get back to her, she will probably become jealous and realize what a great guy you were, and then you MIGHT have shot. OTOH, maybe you'll have so much fun with the new woman that you'll forget about the ex . . .
OK, I see what you and Caroline are saying...my engineer brain is still trying to grok "If you want woman A, go out with woman B" but obviously women aren't that simple :P

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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-16-2007, 12:53 PM   #32
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Quote:
OK, I see what you and Caroline are saying...
ah... ahem. I think Patrick and I are on the same page as far as not looking whiny is concerned, but... well... just so we're clear, I'm not necessarily in agreement with the "date woman A to get woman B" plan. It may be a BETTER plan than mine -- only time will tell -- it's just not the SAME plan.

My suggestion was that your wife MIGHT be interested again some day if she saw what she felt were positive changes in YOU. Things like being a more attentive father to your children -- listenting better -- that sort of thing.

For example. My ex and I broke up 8 years ago for two main reasons (I won't bore you with the details.) He has recently married a lovely woman with a great personality, sense of humor, etc. She's good looking and fun. Her interest in him has never caused me to be jealous or to reconsider my decision -- she has her standards and I have mine.

HOWEVER, he has ALSO gone out and worked on the issues I had with him. These are things I thought he'd never change. We'll never be partners again, but I've been impressed with him and have seen him in a new light. I left that relationship believing that people don't change much, but he's caused me to reconsider my hard line.

I think the best you can hope for, post-divorce, is to create that little doubt, that willingness to reconsider, in your ex-wife's mind. Again, it's unlikely you'll get back with her, but my larger point was that the benefits of focusing on your own changes will accrue to you no matter what she does.

I can remember being in the place you're in -- I know it's hard to see but it DOES get better. I promise!

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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-16-2007, 12:54 PM   #33
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Quote:
Originally Posted by SecondCor521
I am most interested in insights from people who divorced and then remarried their same spouse and people who divorced and remarried someone else, but everyone else is welcome to chime in.

For those of you keeping score at home, my wife of 15.5 years and mother of our three kids divorced me last year. To put it in Dr. Laura terms, my question for you is this: "Should I try to reconcile with my ex-wife?"

On the one hand, I believe in a God who never gives up trying to reconcile with us and who says that a marriage between a man and a woman is like His relationship to us. By that analogy even though we are now divorced I feel I should never give up trying.

On the other hand, I have the knowledge that my ex and I are nearly polar opposites on finances, which caused a great deal of stress between us. And my parents never really approved of her because she was not college educated.

On the other other hand, we were married for a long time and have three kids who really deserve better than what they're getting right now.

On the other other other hand, I would say that a guy should always respect a girl saying "no" in terms of a physical relationship, and it seems that at some point the same should hold true romantically. I guess sort of a question to the ladies here is this: If you say "no, never with you" to a guy who is interested in you romantically, when should he persist and when should he stop?

I feel like I've already asked this question but I don't think I have. If I have, my apologies.

Comments, stories, insights? All questions answered honestly.

2Cor521
I did not read all the replies, so my comment might be redundant.

If you have custody of the kids, I'd say let it go. You have won the battle. It's obvious that you love (loved) your ex, and NOT vice versa. Certain mistakes are not forgivable. Divorcing one's husband and abandonning 3 young children is one of those. You and your children deserve better.


OTOH, if the kids live with your ex, then you have a lot of work ahead, assuming of course that your goal is for the kids to have "normal" family life.

I'm not that lucky in marriage either. But I'm so happy with my 2 children, and that alleviates the pain somewhat. Best of luck to you.
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-16-2007, 01:58 PM   #34
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Caroline, I understand. The trick is in doing those things for me and my kids and not for my ex. That is difficult for me. Let me ask you something though: Suppose I do work on myself for myself, and she sees those things and reconsiders her perspective on life/me/things. I'm supposed to leave it to her to communicate to me that she's considering changing her mind, right? (This romantic stuff with you women really confounds me!)

I should add that I wouldn't deliberately date a "woman B" just to try to get back together with my ex. That's manipulative of my ex and unfair to woman B. At this point my only interest in seeing women is for friendship's sake, which I posted about another time. If only I had an attractive lesbian friend who enjoyed nefarious duplicity...

Sam, we have joint legal and physical custody, with her having them 60% and me having them 40%. We live about two miles away from each other.

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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-16-2007, 03:30 PM   #35
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Good luck man. Your heart is clearly in a good place.

But what I see is 'ol Sisyphus under that damn rock.

Ha
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-16-2007, 05:40 PM   #36
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

The emotional divorce is the most difficult part of the process. I highly recommend the book "Rebuilding When Your Relationship Ends" by Bruce Fisher. There are Fisher Divorce Seminars available in some communities. I just finished going through this "seminar" which is part support group, part educational seminar. Even if you do get back with your wife, this book will really help you understand yourself and what you're going through.
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-16-2007, 05:40 PM   #37
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Quote:
I'm supposed to leave it to her to communicate to me that she's considering changing her mind, right? (This romantic stuff with you women really confounds me!)
Yep, that's pretty much right. I wouldn't call it "romantic," though. Earlier in this thread we saw how sensitive we women are when we think a man is pressing his attentions on us after we've said "no." I'd think of this more as her needing reconciliation to be her idea - not something she was pressured or cajoled into. Right now she's got a knee-jerk "No!" reaction that you want to stop triggering until it dies away.

That said, see my comment below:

Quote:
I should add that I wouldn't deliberately date a "woman B" just to try to get back together with my ex. That's manipulative of my ex and unfair to woman B.
You know, Sec, nobody's perfect, but throughout this process you seem to be aware of others' feelings and are doing your best to take them into account. You've pointed to a couple of things you might have done differently, seem to have learned from your "mistakes," and are being careful not to hurt others while you heal.

I answered your original question based on your stated preference for a reconciliation. But I could also have said that if she thinks she can do better... let her try! Many people (men and women) remain clueless as to others' needs and emotions for their entire lives. You are not one of them and you deserve a partner who appreciates that.

I don't know you or the situation at all, but I know that I sometimes pined for the Ex because I didn't think a 40+ woman like myself could do any better. How wrong I was!!!

If this is your underlying issue, may I gently suggest that you shake it OFF!!! A breakup may leaving you FEELING like you have no value, but that's how it looks from inside your head. From out here, you look like a pretty good guy.
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-16-2007, 08:28 PM   #38
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

Caroline,

"romantic" was probably not the right word choice. What I meant to describe was that for me any relationship beyond friendship with women seems fraught with difficulty, complexity, and danger. You're right in that I don't want to pressure or cajole her. Based on an email I got from her this evening, it sounds like her knee-jerking is not dying away anytime soon. OK, <insert brave smile>.

Thanks for the kind words. I have my moments. Empathy is probably one of my stronger suits.

I still not sure if she thinks she can do better with another specific guy, or if she thinks she can do better just generally, or if she prefers being alone to being with any guy after having tried me. She's either inscrutable or I'm an idiot, I'm not sure which. Maybe both. Time will tell, because I certainly can't ask her.

Quote:
I don't know you or the situation at all, but I know that I sometimes pined for the Ex because I didn't think a 40+ woman like myself could do any better. How wrong I was!!!
At first I thought -- since you are female -- that I was meant to apply the above thought to my wife, and I thought, "Man, that Caroline's being pretty mean!" LOL, then I realized you were talking about me after reading your next paragraph. It reminded me of the first time in my career when I got called into my manager squared's office; I literally thought they were going to fire me, but they gave me stock options instead.

So yes, it is one of my underlying issues - lack of confidence/self esteem/etc. BTW, you were kind to assume only one ;-).

2Cor521

P.S. -- Noticed you have Texas roots in another thread. I knew there was a reason you stood out to me -- I was born at Lackland AFB in San Antonio.
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-17-2007, 08:07 AM   #39
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

2Cor - you sound like you are just too nice a guy for the dating scene. I visualize a big, shy guy with horn rimmed glasses and pocket protector a la Clark Kent. You need to switch to shades, loosen up the edges a bit, and approach this with a sense of adventure and humor. Kind of like the quote from "Risky Business," 'sometimes you just have to say 'what the f***.' Then the ladies will flock to you. 8)
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...
Old 01-17-2007, 06:52 PM   #40
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Re: OK, going way out on a limb here...

I am a bit late to this thread and don't have much additional to offer other than a couple of things learned the hard way.

I have been married; divorced after 15 years; single parent for 3 years; remarried for almost 10 years; widowed and eventually remarried with a bunch of dating while single.

1. Re-read CFB's comments.

2. Remember why you got divorced?

3. Why would you think anything would be different now?

4. What is fair to the kids is a life without parents fighting or ignoring each other. I tried to hold a lousy marriage together "for the kids" and it was far worse on them.

Re-marriage to the same person without a true change in both parties is destined to fail. See #2 and #3 above.

My wife was married to the same guy twice. The second time lasted less than half the time as the they did before the first divorce. She married on the rebound and picked the wrong guy and for the wrong reasons. This lead to her last divorce.

In all your discussion on this thread I don't see where you say she loves you or where you state that you love her. Maybe I missed it but that would be a critical ingedient in a relationship for me.

I see a man who is bitter and wants to get back at a woman how rejected him and continues to do so. Your reaction to this is aggression...get even...take revenge..etc. This is not healthy and you will not be able to "move on" with you life until you resolve these feelings. It takes time...and hard work to do so...been there done that and have the T shirt to prove it....more than once.

I suggest you find a good councilor and get this out of your system. Not getting over a loss (divorce or death) creates roadblocks to being able to truly move on with your life.

I wish you peace and happiness. Let her go and go help yourself.
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