It's True: Some of the Best Marriages are Restored Marriages

Today, Samuel shares in his video insights as to why repaired marriages can be so life giving.

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The Healing has Begun (by Matthew West)

My mind was taken directly to that song, while listening to this vlog Samuel-
"There's a world full of people dying from broken hearts
Holding on to the guilt, thinking they fell too far
So don't be afraid to show 'em your beautiful scars
'Cause they're the proof, yeah you're the proof
Oh, the healing has begun"
Recently, that song made me think about the characteristics of a scar. Primarily, that a scar tends to be much stronger and thicker than the surrounding skin. It's new skin that has been reinforced; just the way you spoke of these restored, scarred marriages. Often, scars do fade over time, and eventually, you have to REALLY look for them to even know they're there.
Lastly, the word you used to describe step #1, authenticity, was, at least for me, the perfect word. Authenticity is so much more than honesty, or vulnerability, it means you're not only honest with your spouse, but with yourself as well. You are genuine, no hiding or dual lives. Free to be who you are. Thereby vulnerable. (Sometimes, I think both parties in these situations are so adept at being chameleons, that we're not even sure who we are.)

thank you for the comment...

great thoughts for sure on being honest with yourself as well. love that. thank you for posting and watching.

Seems to good to be true

Seems to good to be true, Samuel. My husband and I are 16 months past the most recent D-Day. He is taking Hope for Healing and I will be starting Harboring Hope next week. We have been to marriage counseling for the last 16 months and I'm not sure it's helping. Lately, I'm not sure we will make it through this together. So much fear for me. Coming out of this mess and pain and being stronger seems so counterintuitive.

hope2405...i would have said the same thing...

i get it...i really do. i would have said the same thing were it not for rick and getting expert help. fact is, 16 months with JUST general marriage counseling isn't much time at all. yes i'll say it graciously again, it's not much time at all friend. you'll need a specific protocol for sure if you're going to see real change and make it. but you can make it. hope for healing if he does it and puts the time and energy in, will be wonderful for sure and harboring hope will help you immensely as well. you may give some thought to the ems weekend though if you both are that frustrated. at a year we were doing well, but not awesome in any shred of an idea. at two years, much much better, but still occasional flare ups. at three years there was no stopping us. you're early in this chapter my friend. go deep, but go deep from an expert like rick and the team at AR. general care is usually extremely frustrating.

Such hope; such a feeling of utter, deepest sadness

Your vlog today confirms, absolutely, my feeling/hope for our marriage, Samuel!
I wish I could make my horse drink, but I can't. He did at least give me the go ahead to send him this link.
I don't know what will happen, but yesterday was supposed to be the day our divorce was finalized. He agreed to convert it to a separation for now. In part because of insurance concerns for me, but also in part because he admits there's at least a thread of possibility.
We finally had our 'real' Dday about a month and a half ago. Turns out the affair had never actually ended and in his mind, he had divorced me some time ago and married her, while living over a thousand miles away from her and snuck in time with her under the guise of work travel.
Now with our feet on the solid ground of complete honesty, he admits his reasoning- he has been in a relationship with her for three years and loves her; he feels good when he's around her. Not the same for me.
That's about 50% of it. The other 50% is that he's hurt and angry, where was the woman I have become over the past three years, 5 yrs ago, 10yrs, 15yrs? He is afraid the bubble will burst 2 yrs down the road if he decides to stay with me, and I will be back to my same habits, and suspicion, and distracted by other things.
Regarding content within the video, is point #2 kinda like emdr, in that you know where the deep triggers are that can produce the shame, anxiety, fear, etc, & when you see 'that look' in their eyes, or certain behaviors (or lack there of), it's a signal for you to act and try to bring them back to the present?
To be sure I understand point #3, is when you see #2 happening, do a spot check of your priorities to see if it impacts either individual's, or our, relationship with God? Is it something between us that needs to be addressed? Are our children in a situation that needs to be addressed? Otherwise, take a step back, breath and make sure to keep it all in perspective?

spot check...

good q. i think the spot check is a great reference. unless it's a major deal that needs to be addressed between you and your spouse, or something major with the kids, i think you take a big step back and ask yourself in light of all we've been through, how important is this? i mean really a bill? a car issue? ya know small stuff, gets minimized quickly in light of all you're walking through and overcoming. proper perspective is a must in recovery. when you have it, i have found it makes everything easier to navigate. i hope that clarification helps. the more momentum we have in recovery the more it pays off in proper perspective as well.

Hope I am clinging too.

Blogs like this is the hope I am clinging too!! I still can't say for certain that our marriage will not only survive but also thrive. However I still have hope that the best is yet to come. I have hope that changes can be made to build the marriage of our dreams from the depth of this nightmare.
Authenticity is what I crave and it to me is even more valuable and trust worthy than honest. If my husband is being authentic then he has to not only be honest with me, but honest with himself.
Thank you for sharing your life. I pray for you and Samantha and your kids everytime you are willing to be so honest. And when you uttered the C word I found myself griped with fear, then I realized you said We SURVIVED cancer, I am hoping that means it is in the past. But just in case I added that to prayer too.

Slm

your prayers

your prayers mean the world to samantha and i. thank you for saying that. every day i thank God for what I get to do and how our family has been restored. authenticity is a must for sure, and i've been praying and working to make sure this vlog is truly authentic and gives the best opportunity to help those who are trying to heal. your support and prayers are so kind. thank you for that. thank you a ton.

I just don't buy it.

I want to thank you for all of your Vlogs. I have been listening to Rick and subscribing to Hope Now for over 2 years, and your Vlogs since they started. DDay was 2 and a half years ago, and you have both helped me tremendously in my healing. We were married for 22 years, had a blended family, and our own business together. It was a life filled with tremendous challenges, and when our youngest son flew the nest, I was so excited about finally getting to reconnect and have a future with my husband. Unbeknownst to me he had entirely different plans. For years.
And I trusted him with my life.
Yes, our marriage is better. How could it not be better now that he is not lying to me, cheating behind my back, and using OUR money for some other woman and her children? Of course it is better. And I don't want it to be the same.
I will never forget the betrayal. The hurtful things he said and did to me, and our children. Our marriage can never be an incredible marriage, because human beings do not treat people they love (or even care about a little bit) they way he treated me and our children.
I will know deep in my heart that I am going through life with someone who did not value me at all, for a period of time. So, Samuel, I just don't buy the concept that some of the best marriages are restored marriages. Once something is broken, sure it can be fixed, but ultimately, it is flawed.

thank you for your kind words.......maybe....

janette, thank you for sharing, watching, reading and now commenting. i get it. it's tough. it's excruciating for sure. what you've been through, though i don't know the specifics, had to hurt like hell and completely devastate you and the kids. i would never try to minimize what has happened or your pain. that would be insulting and naive. however, and it's a big however so please indulge me. i know you're not buying it, but let me encourage you that perhaps it's too early to tell? perhaps he's not done much recovery work to get to a point where he can woo back your heart or continue to go deep enough into his heart to realize some things and then own them with you? maybe he's not done enough laborious work to then repair what's been done in you and to you? i probably didn't believe this concept till about 4 or 5 years. that's the truth. nor did samantha. she now believes that. she's seen too much. she's experienced too much renewal and change. it's no shock to me that at 2 +/- years you would think what you're thinking. i get it. my simple retort is, you need more time to experience healing. he needs more time to experience the awakening within to the monster he was, which will then translate into (hopefully) more ownership, more pursuit, more repair and more humility. if he chooses NOT to do any of that, then we have a bit of a problem which deflates the concept or ideal i'm sharing. so at some level, it may be difficult if he's not willing to do 'whatever it takes.' i certainly don't want to be controversial for controversial sake right? but wanted to answer and just share a few things that broaden the perspective a bit. i'm sorry if I upset you or frustrated you. i certainly don't want to do that ever.

Thank you for taking the time

Thank you for taking the time to encourage. It helped.

Janette, I hope not to offend

Janette, I hope not to offend you with this, but to offer my objective observation from your post.
It really sounds like there is resentment and bitterness. It has taken me 20+ yrs in this marriage, partial D-days, EMSO, lots of introspection, humility and a WHOLE LOTTA God to learn some things-
-resentment, if left unchecked, WILL grow into bitterness. Thing is, it may have started out as resentment toward your spouse's actions, etc. but bitterness is a weed that will not only impact thoughts in one area of life, it will impact your entire life and all of your relationships. It has taken me too long in life to truly grasp what others meant when saying, "forgiveness is a gift you give yourself." Now that I am learning that lesson, it is spreading to other parts of my life, even 40 years back.
Holding onto those resentful thoughts and feelings is like embracing a porcupine while wearing a swimsuit; you're sensitive and raw feelings are on the surface and you're holding onto the very thing that keeps hurting you instead of letting it go.
I find that humility & empathy have helped me a lot in this area. Looking inward and seeing the ways I have hurt others, not just my husband(but God knows I hurt him plenty, whether unintentionally or even intentionally on occasion) and appreciating that foregiveness I've received (for me, as a Christian, God's forgiveness of me, and continuing foregiveness every day) helps me to be able to treat others, my husband included, the way I would want to be treated.
With regards to what I call the 'if he really loved me' factor- I have taken to looking at the whole situation from a mental health standpoint. They're not in their right mind. As one with ADHD, it may be easier for me to accept this. I have a very hard time stopping some things(hyper-focus) and conversely, I have a hard time getting started on something that I think may be time consuming or unpleasant. I have 'ignored' many things in my life, missed out on many things that I truly wanted, because of this. It wasn't a matter of me not wanting it bad enough, or not loving whomever enough. It's a combination of neurochemistry, learned behaviors, etc. when left untreated, it severely impacts me and those around me. I didn't know I even had it for quite some time.
Not until someone starts getting the appropriate help, be it therapy, medication, spiritual, exercise or diet that may naturally boost certain neuro chemicals, whatever; not until then are they going to be able to see and think clearly. We have all tasted some kind of something in our lives that we have a very difficult time saying no to- be it alcohol, a soap opera, pornography or sex outside of marriage, computer/phone games, social media, chocolate, (insert your own weakness here...). In these times, maybe we need to completely remove the temptation, if that's not possible, we have a counselor or an accountability partner to help us or sometimes we need medicinal treatment, ... You get the idea. I believe all of humanity has experienced at least one weakness that they simply cannot uproot on their own and need the help of another to gain control of it.
We are each broken, or flawed, in our own way, just like our marriages are broken or flawed. The difference is, in your own life, do you let that flaw define who you are and wear that label and allow yourself to be weighed down by it, or do you say to yourself, "This weakness doesn't define me or rule my life or mind. That mistake I made was a mistake and nothing more. This inability is only that; I may not be able to do it the way most other people do it, but I can find another way to get it done (even if that means with the help of another)"?
Don't hold onto those porcupines in your marriage. Let them go so you can embrace better things in life. Don't let them define your marriage. Don't live life looking in the rearview mirror if the past. Look at the present. Look occasionally at the future horizon so you can choose the best path and hopefully avoid any hazards. Look occasionally to the past just so you remember what to avoid now and in the future.
Appreciate who your husband is now, not who he was, nor who you hope he will one day be.
I know I want people to appreciate me for who I am now, not who I was or who they hope I will be some day down the road. 

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