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Norman M.
Norman M., Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 2536
Experience:  ADHP(NC), DHP, ECP, UKCP Registered, 10 years in relationship counselling, over 2,000 satisfied mental health customers.
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Sad story. Ill be brief. Married 4 years. Wife got distant

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Sad story. I'll be brief. Married 4 years. Wife got distant as she was concerned about my mental health. Actually nothing wrong with my mental health, just a victim of a crime or two or something. Regardless, so things break down in marriage counseling in June. She gives me a nice birthday on the 28th of June, but we're only visiting at this stage. We had agreed that I would stay at my grandmother's to find work and take care of things, in terms of being a victim. People convince me that I need to give her more of a hard time given what she has done to me, so in marriage counseling I do. I don't understand what happened there, except she may have been guilty of conspiring against me / or she just learned hot to push my buttons. We have 2 more visitations with the kids and her at what was according to law enforcement my legal residence. After the 2nd visitation she decides to tell me that if I come home she'll call the cops. The cops told me that without a court order she can't do that. So there as an episode on the 29th of June where I grabbed a note out of her hand and she took that action as abuse. I would say the 2 visits after that in July went well. But then her girlfriend came in from out of town, and my wife had her sleeping my my spot in bed. And then I found out that my two kids would wake up and look for this women in my spot. I was not angry, just really concerned. So my wife, with a lesbian past, left for a short vacation with her girlfriend and our two kids. I asked my lawyer, the police, and a PI, and they said you have a legal right to go back, and going back when she is not there should prevent her from stopping you or getting into an altercation at the door. So I followed their advice. The Police had the landlord, my father-in-law let me in the apartment as my key did not work - reason unknown. So we're now talking from June 29th to July 24th with 2 visits with her and the kids, without her calling the police or being afraid of me. So on the 24th I go back home, and start to fix up things. She has her father-in-law and brother come in those 2 days I was there and start removing things that I'm assuming she did not want me to see. I did not understand where the computer had gone the one morning so being confused as to who was taking what, and thinking that my external HD was also taken, I called the police. I was always told even by her that it's best to just call the police rather than get in to any arguments regardless. Plus I really didn't know where stuff was going. So the police come and leave, and she had called me twice during the 2 days. The 1st time she said, "when I get home, all kinds of shit is going to rain down on you". She believes we had an agreement for me to stay away, I would say we didn't agree, she just decided she had the right to do so. We had previous agreements for me to come home soon, and I would say she broke those too... So with stuff missing I call a PI and he says, it's all community property in PA as long as you're still married, just take photo's or photo copy stuff as this is going down hill. The only think I actually physically took to my recollection was our wedding cards. It was apparent to me that they would probably mean more to me at the time, and I never got the chance to really take a look at time. I'm notstalgic.. So I set up a place to sleep upstairs to give her, her space and boundaries, so we can be cordial after I moved back in. After doing so, I was met by 2 different police officers who said she had an emergency PFA against me to throw me out. I left, but did not understand. I was not abusive. She later wrote it up as the incident from June 29th. So the PFA stands in continuance, and I haven't been able to communicate with her and my children for about 6 or so weeks. And I would really like to see my family get back together. I don't know why she hated me enough to do this? I really don't? She says she was afraid, and I understand that. I don't want her to be afraid. Irony is that she had been pretty mentally abusive from June to July and I actually had the PFA paperwork to fill out against her and decided not to, about 2 weeks prior... After negotiations with lawyers, she didn't want to see me, but would allow me to visit with kids. The length of time on that would have been six months. Plus her lawyer tried to add to the initial PFA by saying I stalked or went through her stuff, and so I didn't sign that. One because it wasn't part of the original complaint and added new material to the complaint, and two because I was just listening to the PI and, even what I got I never went through. I think that it's her personal business. I just didn't know what to do as it appeared she was concealing something... Soo, I'm heartbroken all over the place and I miss my kids beyond belief. I want the family back together- what can I do?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Norman M. replied 11 months ago.

There is no use in me giving you false hope. The facts suggest that this relationship is beyond repair, sadly, but nothing is impossible.

The very best you can do is to look at what you have contributed to the situation becoming what it is, identifying where you might have gone wrong (and being very honest with yourself) so that you never repeat the same mistakes again.

In the meantime, give her plenty of space, stay away from her, and although it may be hard, limit your time with the kids exactly as to where and when you are permitted to see them. Forget the advice given by your friends to he hard on her. They obviously do not have a clue as to how relationships work.

Explain to her by letter what you are doing and tell her that you would like to give this a second try, but are not going to push her.

Don’t repeat old patterns of behavior that have not worked for you in the past.

Also, I think you are finding it hard to sort out the situation in your own mind, and for that reason, I’m going to suggest that you would benefit from some Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. This is not because I think you have a mental health problem, but because you would benefit from some sound, unbiased advice and support.

CBT is based on the fact that what we think in any given situation generates beliefs about, and reactions to that situation, and also causes the behaviour and feelings which flow from those beliefs and reactions.

These ‘automatic thoughts’ are so fast that generally, we are unaware that we have even had them. We call them ANTS (automatic negative thoughts) for short.

If the pattern of thinking we use, or our beliefs about our situation are even slightly distorted,

the resulting emotions and actions that flow from them can be extremely negative and unhelpful. The object of CBT is to identify these ‘automatic thoughts’ then to re-adjust our thoughts and beliefs so that they are entirely realistic and correspond to the realities of our lives, and that therefore, the resulting emotions, feelings and actions we have will be more useful and helpful.

Cognitive therapists do not usually interpret or seek for unconscious motivations but bring cognitions and beliefs into the current focus of attention and through guided discovery encourage clients to gently re-evaluate their thinking.

Therapy is not seen as something “done to” the client. CBT is not about trying to prove a client wrong and the therapist right, or getting into unhelpful debates. Through collaboration, questioning and re-evaluating their views, clients come to see for themselves that there are alternatives and that they can change.

Clients try things out in between therapy sessions, putting what has been learned into practice, learning how therapy translates into real life improvement.

Please visit this website for much more detailed information on CBT:

http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/mentalhealthinfoforall/treatments/cbt.aspx

If you cannot afford to see a therapist, there are good free CBT based self-help resources here:

http://www.getselfhelp.co.uk/cbtstep1.htm

Also, there is a book called ”Feeling good - the new mood therapy” by Dr. David Burns. It has a hand book which gives you practical exercises to work through and further instructions on how to better use CBT. I really do recommend it.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Workbook for Dummies By Rhena Branch, Rob Willson is also pretty good.

Best wishes, NormanM

Customer: replied 11 months ago.

I appreciate the idea of therapy. After too many years of therapy I won't be doing so any longer. But I really do appreciate it. I have a degree in psychology. It's unfortunate at the ways in which the discipline has hurt so many and continues to do so. I'll be placing my faith in God and simply following that path. I recommend it for those who can grasp such a thing. It's a better pattern of behavior and doesn't keep one or everyone else around that one focused on problems that were best walked away from years ago...


 


I'd be happy to give you a rating. However, you did not answer my question. What can I do about the relationship?


 

Expert:  Norman M. replied 11 months ago.

The primary need above everything is to establish communication with her in any way you can perhaps even through a third party. That is the prime essential, so that you can begin to (a) find out the reasons behind her actions (b)plan to deal with her doubts and fears and (c )begin to reassure her that you believe you have a possible future together.

Without that communication, nothing is going to happen. Consider any means of communication possible - by email, letter, via her solicitor or yours. Perhaps you may be able to use her parents as a conduit. In any case, make sure that they know how you feel and what you intend, because inevitably it will come up as a major topic of conversation when they are in touch with their daughter.

Don’t when in contact with her try to assign blame for past events. They are water under the bridge and cannot be blamed, so in a sense, who is to blame is irrelevant.

If you believe there is fault in the situation, be prepared to acknowledge yours to her, but don’t, mention what you perceive to be hers. If you feel that YOU have to make changes in yourself, acknowledge that to her and tell her what you are doing to achieve that.

That, in addition to what I suggested earlier (excepting the therapy) is your best, XXXXX XXXXX only way forward.

I hope it all works out for you.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.

According to this fraudulent court document I received I can't contact her directly or through 3rd party. So I've told that to people I've discussed with. Seemingly, I can only explain how I feel and what's going on with me to 3rd parties and then they can do whatever they feel like doing with that information.... Strange considering the amount of 3rd party tampering with my life that my wife seemingly did. But who really knows.


 


I agree that that the past is the past in this case... Forget about it...


 


What would you suggest I communicate to these third parties about myself given the fact that I can't ask them to communicate with her?

Expert:  Norman M. replied 11 months ago.
Simply ensure that they know how devastated you feel, that you want to try to resolve the situation by any means possible, and that you are examining your own role in the breakup to see what you could change in the future. Be open and honest with them.

It seems that you cannot ask them directly to pass the information on, but as far as I understand,. there is no fault in expressing a wish that somehow, your wife could find out how you are feeling. People being what they are, I think you will find that at least her parents will take it upon themselves to pass the information on. If you think there is a possible legal risk in that (which I doubt) check before doing it!
Norman M., Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 2536
Experience: ADHP(NC), DHP, ECP, UKCP Registered, 10 years in relationship counselling, over 2,000 satisfied mental health customers.
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