Thursday, October 9, 2014

The power of NO

by Maryanne Comaroto

In spite of the fact that one little word can help us avoid a large number of situations that would be uncomfortable, painful, or downright wrong for us, learning to say "NO" is one of the most difficult skill challenges we face. As women, we fear that the word "no" will result in rejection - that if we don't agree to what other people want us to do, then we'll end up not being loved. Your body tells you when "NO" is the correct answer; it's the strong contraction reflex that I'm sure you're familiar with. How many times have you ignored that reflex and ended up in a situation that could have been avoided?

Evans asks:

"My ex girlfriend says she likes me, but she doesn’t want a boyfriend or a commitment right now. We began kissing and holding hands 2 weeks after the breakup but she stopped because she doesn’t want to complicate things. What should I do if I want to win her back?"

What exactly is unclear about "she doesn't want a boyfriend or commitment"? Her putting a stop to the kissing and holding hands also indicates that she's trying to make a break, not form a bond. Love is not a sport, and you'd both be better off if you learn from this and move on rather than trying to win affections she clearly doesn't want to give. If you really want to get something out of this situation, ask her where you went wrong in her opinion, and use that information to help you prepare for your next relationship with someone else.

Brandon asks:

"On several occasions I have asked my fiancĂ© how much she loves me and if she’s willing to sacrifice things like; moving, leaving her friends and family to come with me. She constantly avoids the questions. What I want to know is does she really love me seeing as she doesn’t seem willing to give up some things for our relationship?"

Let me show you exactly how much she has sacrificed and how committed she is: out of seven billion people on the earth, who did she choose to be with? YOU. Does that not make you feel wonderful and special and wanted? If you choose to look at the glass half-empty and keep inventing new tests for her to fail, all you'll do is make yourself miserable instead of seeing the sacrifice and commitment she's already made.

Melissa asks:

"My husband of 19 yrs. was just caught having an affair. It was going on for 2½ years. Since then he has been begging, pleading, etc., that it was a mistake and he only wants me and the kids. I believe he is close to a nervous breakdown. Here is my question; the only place they ever saw each other was at her apartment during the day for sex 2-3x a month. He never bought her anything, took her anywhere or gave her any money. She confirmed this so it has to be true. He insists he never cared for her, it was only sex. He never told her he loved her. He called her in front of me and told her I love my wife, you were only sex, she freaked. Could it be true to have a 2½ yr affair and have no feelings for her?"

Monogamy and trust are two of the supporting foundation blocks on which a marriage is built. When one of them crumbles, it can be difficult; when both of them crumble, it can be devastating. In your case, there's the additional issue that this was not a one-time error of judgement on his part - this was something that went on for two-and-a-half years, which he lied to you about the whole time. So the questions you need to be asking are not to him, but to yourself. What would it take for you to trust your husband again? What would the situation have to be in order for you to believe what he says? You can also learn a lot from asking yourself what your role is, how you were complicit.

There are so many great tools out there to help you in the healing process. I would recommend How to Love Your Marriage by Eve Eschner Hogan as a great source of wisdom to help you face the difficult questions ahead of you. Best of luck, and thank you for sharing.

- Maryanne

by Maryanne Comaroto of Maryanne Live

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