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Norman M.
Norman M., Principal psychotherapist in private practice. Newspaper contributor, over 2000 satisfied clients on JA
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 2568
Experience:  ADHP(NC), DEHP(NC), ECP, UKCP Registered.
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I have been married for seven years. When we first got married

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I have been married for seven years. When we first got married I found out she was lying about a sexual relationship she had had and later on our first born son was not biologically mine. Being so short in my marriage, I wanted to see if it was workable as oppose to failing so quickly. We went to counseling and over the years following I dealt fine with it. She has lied about multiple things throughout our marriage although none of it had to do with infidelity. Well now seven years later and with three boys, the oldest being six, I found that she has been chatting to an ex-boyfriend about our marriage and asking things like if he still thinks of her. I confronted her and she lied and lied until I gave her undeniable evidence I knew and then I got the typical sobbing and "I'm sorry" and "I love you more than anything." We were supposed to have a family vacation starting today and our argument never concluded so she left with the boys on vacation. I am agonizing by myself, help

Hello, and thanks for visiting JA.

First off, your wife needs to be confronted with unacceptability of her behavior, and made to understand while you care for her, her behaviour is unacceptable and has to change.

She also needs to understand that any continuation of deception will have unpleasant consequences. They need to be spelled out to her very clearly, with clear emphasis on the fact that they will apply immediately should she lie to you again – even once.

We humans only indulge in behaviour that brings reward of some kind. Only when that reward (whatever it might be) disappears, or the consequences of our behaviour promise to be unpleasant do we consider changing what we do. She needs to be given good reason to change.

Here is the clue to sorting things out. When you are faced with non-co-operation – give her choices, and make sure she understands the consequences of her choice – and always follow through.

Never get angry, stay cool and in control, matter of fact and stick to the facts. Avoid drama.

Part of the problem is of course, that you need to decide just how hard a line you are going to take on this. If you do nothing, she has no reason to change, and will not. If you take very hard line, there is a very good chance that you will alienate her completely.

Finding a compromise between those extremes would be best, XXXXX XXXXX since only you, know her, her history, and your situation intimately, you are the only one who can decide where to draw the line.


Best wishes, NormanM

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