~ From an Anonymous Contributor,
My husband and I have been married almost twenty-two years. I always thought we had a good marriage. We had been through the usual ups and downs but I was confident we would get old together. During this time I took charge of the money and paid the price for it. I was constantly plagued with depression, worry, moodiness, and everything that goes with it including phobias. I also worked as a teacher and did everything around the house. My husband would come home from work, eat and watch TV for the rest of the night. He also worked in the years and at our ranch.
I began to gripe and nag that I had too many responsibilities and needed him to help. The only time he helped was when I nagged, and then he helped very reluctantly. We started criticizing each other rather severely. After going for counseling to help me with my phobias, I became more assertive and demanding. I felt marriage was a fifty-fifty proposition and I wanted my husband to help me more. Very often the word “divorce” would creep into the conversation, though I felt sure we were just threatening and nothing else.
After attending a dance with friends I felt alone and unloved for some reason. My husband was attentive but cool and I felt my first pang of fear. I felt for the first time in my life that he didn’t love me as much anymore. The next few months I felt depressed and worried and the only thing I wanted to do after work was fix supper, eat and go to sleep. I also had spells of crying and feeling sorry for myself. Sometimes I would go to our bedroom crying, hoping my husband would come and comfort me, which he did by patting my head and talking to me. This was not what I wanted. I wanted closeness and it wasn’t there.
I had another crying spell during the night. He tried to comfort me. I told him we were growing apart and I didn’t like the feeling. The next day he said, “You rejected me and now I’m not sure I love you”. I was scared out of my wits. I’m Catholic and had been on the ovulation method of birth control which calls for a lot of abstaining. He never did like this method.
Soon after, I began to use birth control. Even though I was Catholic, I was not going to lose my husband because he wasn’t getting enough sex. The usual had been twice a month. My husband tried to discourage me saying I shouldn’t go against my convictions. He said it was too late anyway; that he felt impotent and had no desire for me.
I went ahead with the birth control hoping against hope that one day he would love me again. Not long afterwards, I was admitted to the hospital for a minor surgery and while still woozy from the anesthetic, a woman came into my room and started talking to me. I had no idea who she was or what she was doing there. Finally, she said she had been my husband’s mistress for the past nine years! My world came tumbling down around me and I got hysterical. Not my good, Catholic husband! Not him! That was the darkest time of my life. In all my life I would least suspect my husband of having an affair.
A priest came to speak to me and told me to forgive my husband. Then my husband came in. He was really shaken and said, “It’s not what you think it is, honey.” He told me that I had rejected him and then he had found her. My disbelief was incredible for I had not one inkling that he was having an affair. Since that fateful day, he has not seen her. I am finding it very difficult to forgive this dreadful sin, even though I said I would forgive him and didn’t want him to leave. He didn’t want to leave either.
We started going to a marriage counselor and he helped some, but I didn’t find real hope until I found Fascinating Womanhood. I had gone to the library to find a book on how to get my husband interested in me again. I just know that God had a hand in leading me to it.
I started reading Fascinating Womanhood and cried and cried at all the mistakes I had made. I started applying the principles and began to see a little response in my husband. Oh, I could have kicked myself for all the years I didn’t admire him and wounded his pride so deeply. I began to admire him often. I would write him notes in his lunches, admiring him, and telling him that I loved him. He reacted very guardedly but accepted my compliments. I tried desperately not to feel sorry for myself and not to think of the other woman but it was most difficult. When I felt depressed I reread a chapter from FW and felt better.
I was impatient however about progress. Oh, I wanted him to throw his arms around me and tell me that he loved me deeply and so badly that I ached inside. He did hug me and kissed me lightly on the lips. We had sex but the closeness was still not there. I listened intently to his conversations and praised him and admired him without sounding too gushy. He talked to me openly about his job and let me know what had been going on.
One night, Pandora’s Box opened for the first time. During our engagement his hopes and dreams for our marriage were fantastically high, only to be shattered and not at all what he had expected. He told me about the time I had smeared his face with a dirty diaper jut because he wouldn’t help me change the baby. He said he could have killed me and would never forgive me for that.
He said I had refused to let a cousin live with us for awhile because I wanted my privacy. This cousin was the son of an uncle he had truly loved as a father. This uncle had helped him immensely when he was growing up, gave him money, advice and let him live with them during our engagement so my husband could save money for the wedding. I had refused to let this cousin live with us and he had to tell his uncle he was sorry.
Then he went to bed. He put his arm around me several times during the night. When he got up he put his hands on my face, kissed me, and told me he loved me. All this happened the first time Pandora’s Box opened. The Box kept opening once or twice a week for three months. He had stored up anger for twenty-one years and was finally releasing it. Every time Pandora’s Box opened I sat quietly and looked at him and listened. I followed your advice completely and just said I was sorry. I couldn’t believe all the pent-up anger he had been storing.
I cried every day for three years. My only consolation was reading Fascinating Womanhood. During these three years the other woman harassed me incessantly. She would call at all hours and use obscene language. She would call me at school. Once she even came to the school to ask my principle something. She would pass by my house and wave and make faces.
Sometimes I would get so distressed I would go into a room and scream into a pillow and pound it. My children were still at home and I didn’t want them to see me so agitated.
My sexual need for my husband made a complete turnaround. Once I found out he didn’t love me anymore, my need for him increased and his need for me diminished. In our case, the sexual relationship was very important. When we had sex it made my husband feel like a virile strong man and when I rejected him—which was often—he felt desperately alone and unloved.
It has been eight years since the hospital incident. I can truly say that it was the turning point in my life. If that woman had not gone to see me at the hospital my husband and I might have been divorced by now. But God was truly with us.
My husband and I are happy and content. He feels loved, admired, and like a man again. I feel loved too! I don’t nag him anymore. It was a long and difficult struggle but the rewards were worth it. My husband can talk to me about his innermost feelings. We discuss problems.
My husband’s confidence in himself went up one hundred percent. He got promoted twice and received an award for outstanding work. Now he’s a supervisor and the men who work for him respect and admire him. We are a loving family now.
Every time I am around women and they talk about their marital problems, I tell them of things I learned in Fascinating Womanhood. Many of the younger women do not agree however. They feel marriage should be a fifty-fifty relationship. I ache for them because I know what will happen eventually. I buy FW books and give them to people I know need help. Thank you, Fascinating Womanhood. As you can see, it changed my life. I can never go back to my old ways.
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