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The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase #38063
12/20/10 07:49 AM
12/20/10 07:49 AM
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Lil Offline OP

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Originally Posted By: Dr Harley
So, to avoid an indefinite period of suffering while a wayward spouse vacillates between spouse and lover, and to avoid rewarding the selfish behavior of having needs met by both spouse and lover, if plan A does not work within a reasonable period of time, I recommend plan B.

Plan B is for the betrayed spouse to avoid all contact with the wayward spouse until the affair has completely ended and the wayward spouse has agreed to my plan for recovery. In many cases, once an affair has ended, a betrayed spouse makes the mistake of taking the wayward spouse back before an agreement is made regarding marital recovery. This leads to a return to all the conditions that made the affair possible -- love is not restored, resentment is not overcome, and there is a very great risk for another affair. Without agreement and subsequent implementation of a plan for recovery, the betrayed spouse is better off continuing with plan B.

Since plan B (and plan A, for that matter), is extremely stressful for the betrayed spouse, I usually recommend that he or she ask a physician to prescribe anti-depressant medication to be taken throughout the crisis. This not only greatly reduces the suffering of the betrayed spouse, but it also helps keep a clear head at a time when patience and wise decisions are crucial. Anti-depressant medication does not numb the betrayed spouse to the crisis, it actually helps raise him or her above emotional reactions that would otherwise prevent clear-headed thinking. Why suffer and and make poor choices when anti-depressant medication can help ease your pain and improve your concentration in this time of unprecedented crisis?

While I have seen remarkable success by people using plan A and plan B, success is by no means guaranteed. The problem with Plan B is that the unfaithful spouse may not return, nor agree to the plan for recovery, even after the affair has ended. Separation in marriage is always risky because, "out of sight, out of mind." Unless plan A leaves the wayward s spouse with the impression that returning home is an attractive choice, separation can become permanent. So before implementing plan B, you want to be sure that the last thing your spouse remembers about you is the care and thoughtfulness you offered in plan A. That way, the separation can help create, "absence makes the heart grow fonder."

As it turns out, most affairs end within six months of their seeing the light of day (being revealed to their family and friends), and almost all affairs end without leading to marriage. Even those few that end in marriage have only a 25% rate of success. That's because affairs are based on dishonesty and thoughtlessness for the feelings of others. That same dishonesty and thoughtlessness eventually turns on the lovers themselves, and the affair is destroyed by those same flaws that made it possible in the first place. What drives affairs is passion, not commitment, and once the passion wanes, there is nothing to help the lovers restore their passion. Marriage, on the other hand, especially with children, has many factors that motivate couples to restore their passion for each other after passion has waned. So when passion is gone from an affair, a wayward spouse is usually motivated to return to the betrayed spouse by all of these other factors. For most, it's a logical choice.

But what about marital separation when an affair is not the issue. In your letter, you did not indicate why you had separated. It may have been for reasons other than infidelity.

In general, I recommend separation when at least one spouse cannot control destructive behavior. An ongoing affair, of course, is one of those situations. Hence, plan B. But other situations such as physical and verbal abuse, where one spouse's mental or physical safety is as risk, are also grounds for separation. As in the case of infidelity, if one spouse is abusive, I often recommend plan A first, where, through negotiation (without anger, disrespect or demands), an attempt is made to overcome the abuse without separating.

But in some cases, the safety risks are so great that plan B should be implemented immediately, with no time for plan A. In these cases, treatment for the abusive habit must take place during separation, and some evidence must exist that the risk has been greatly reduced, or completely eliminated, before the spouses should return to each other. Then, after being together again, the formerly abusive spouse should be held accountable by others for his or her behavior to assure the other spouse's safety.

In other cases, such as annoying behavior or failure to meet important emotional needs, where thoughtlessness does not reach the level of physical or mental abuse, plan A should be given quite a bit of time and effort before resorting to plan B. Remember, plan A is negotiating (without anger, disrespect or demands) to eliminate the annoying behavior or improve the meeting of emotional needs. A blanket agreement between spouses to follow the Policy of Joint Agreement goes a long way toward eliminating these thoughtless acts, and can also help couples learn to meet each other's needs with enthusiasm. But without that policy, couples often find that they cannot get anywhere with each other through negotiation, and sometimes separation can eventually lead to mutual recognition that they need the Policy of Joint Agreement to help them resolve conflicts.
original article here

Last edited by Lil; 01/05/14 06:27 AM. Reason: changing thread name

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Just found out about your spouses affair?
Infidelity Guide For The Betrayed Spouse


Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Lil] #38064
12/20/10 08:05 AM
12/20/10 08:05 AM
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Lil Offline OP

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Plan B. Bane, sanctuary, stepping outside the comfort zone into the dark unknown.

What many do not realise is that Plan B is, in essence, PLAN 'ME' In plan B there is no more being on your best behaviour around your WS. There is no more second guessing, no more having the dirty ugliness of the affair rubbed into your face daily. In plan B its all about you, baby. YOUR life, YOUR desires, YOUR future.

Plan B is the culmination of a plan A. It should be an absolutely seamless transition from plan A. Before entering plan B be very sure you are ready because there is no going back. Think carefully about the last memories you wish to leave the WS about you. Are they going to be of you crying, begging, pleading? Or of you being confident, happy, secure, busy and fun - at least to all appearances. Plan A rarely leads to marital recovery by itself, plan B has no more or less a success rate. Plan B is only as effective as the plan A you enacted. Plan B is NOT a guarantee the marriage will be saved.

Plan B is not to punish the wayward spouse - although they will feel that it is, and behave accordingly. Plan B has many purposes:

* to let the WS see what life with out the BS will be like (a preview of divorce)
* to stop the BS from being exposed to the ongoing abuse that is infidelity
* to remove the BS from the never ending drama's the WS and OP often thrive upon
* to protect the BS's love bank to it does not get withdrawn to the level of hate
* puts the burden of filling the WS's EN's entirely upon the OP - something very few can do for very long
* allows the BS healing time, time to make a life for themselves apart from the WS, and recover personally.
* allows the love balance the BS has for the WS to die away naturally


AKA Lildoggie

Just found out about your spouses affair?
Infidelity Guide For The Betrayed Spouse


Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Lil] #38119
12/20/10 02:17 PM
12/20/10 02:17 PM
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Thanks for posting this Lil. A lot of folks have come over here from DB or other places and when we toss around terms like Plan A and Plan B...I'm not sure they completely get it. Heck, it took me about 6 months of hanging around the MB forum and reading Harley's books and articles to get it! And given the DB advice of living 'as if' and waiting it out...well Plan B is a radical departure. Get into it too soon and you are setting yourself up for failure.

Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: OurHouse] #39264
12/22/10 09:11 PM
12/22/10 09:11 PM
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So far in my plan b the no contact actually made me calmer, and I noticed when he contacted me about things he usually did it makes me nervous and then when I respond differently he then does not contact back. So the boundaries and not contacting do make me feel calmer.

A long haul of this I worry about, but instead of having fear I should look at it as me being stronger.

And I am seeing that I dealt with verbal abuse since when I do not respond like I use to he gets angry. I mentioned it to my daughter and she said he was always like that, I missed it, see I got use to it.

So plan b is a refuge I need to be comforted by it not afraid of it.

And you are all so strong and with so much support, that is such a godsend.
tink

Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: ] #39276
12/22/10 09:42 PM
12/22/10 09:42 PM
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Lil Offline OP

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Basic elements of a Plan B letter:

1. Make it a love letter (apologies for your 50%, and how you can or will correct. DO NOT apologise for things that are nothing to do with you)
2. No lovebusters
3. Make "NO CONTACT" clear
4. Make unambiguous the "condition" of return to marital relationships
5. Limit references to OP
6. Plan out the logistics (as best as possible)


AKA Lildoggie

Just found out about your spouses affair?
Infidelity Guide For The Betrayed Spouse


Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Lil] #39277
12/22/10 09:53 PM
12/22/10 09:53 PM
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Lil Offline OP

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Why a written letter? Why not just tell the WS or talk about it?

Plan B requires a great deal of persistence on the behalf of the BS to resist temporary, incomplete and insincere return attempts, by the WS, through attempted contact. This contact has to be seen for it's dishonest and insincere intent.

Being able to refer to a permanent hard copy, makes the "no contact" rule easier to apply and reduces any guess work.
Drafting the Plan B letter gives the BS an opportunity to think through acceptance of the 2 end results. If you're not ready for them, you're not ready for Plan B.

The end results are:
-The return of the wayward spouse, leading to marital recovery, or;
-Permanent separation, leading to divorce, and a chance of a new relationship.

Why does plan B require there be no contact?
You can't protect the little bit of love you have left in your Love Bank necessary for any future reconciliation
You can't become independent
You can't really eliminate satisfying your WS's EN's
Personal growth will be coloured by WS's influence
There have been ample examples of BSs being strung along indefinitely by their WS when contact is allowed.


AKA Lildoggie

Just found out about your spouses affair?
Infidelity Guide For The Betrayed Spouse


Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Lil] #40558
12/27/10 12:00 AM
12/27/10 12:00 AM
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Hey Lil,
Good job on getting this Plan B stuff going.
I'm just starting to go through this now and will toss out some thoughts.

Originally Posted By: lildoggie
Basic elements of a Plan B letter:

1. Make it a love letter (apologies & how you can/will correct)
2. No lovebusters
3. Make "NO CONTACT" clear
4. Make unambiguous the "condition" of return to marital relationships
5. Limit references to OP
6. Plan out the logistics (as best as possible)

I don't think of a Plan B letter as a love letter, ending with one I love you, yes/maybe depending on the
sitch and state of the WS (is WS waffling between OP and BS).
Can you clarify what you think of as a 'love letter', please and thank you!

References to OP, I don't think there should be any. Mentioning the OP steers the focus off of the BS and the M.
The Plan B letter should be strictly about the BS and the WS, and the path back to the M, IMO.


26 yrs. married
There's nothing more powerful than a woman with an open heart ......
Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Vittoria] #40561
12/27/10 12:15 AM
12/27/10 12:15 AM
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red=mine

Plan B is not to punish the wayward spouse - although they will feel that it is, and behave accordingly. Plan B has many purposes:

* to let the WS see what life with out the BS will be like (a preview of divorce)
* to stop the BS from being exposed to the ongoing abuse that is infidelity
* to remove the BS from the never ending drama's the WS and OP often thrive upon
* to protect the BS's love bank to it does not get withdrawn to the level of hate
* puts the burden of filling the WS's EN's entirely upon the OP - something very few can do for very long

* allows the BS healing time, time to make a life for themselves apart from the WS, and recover personally.
(this is a huge one, you don't realize how distraught and exhausted you are emotionally, until the drama has stopped)

* allows the love balance the BS has for the WS to die away naturally

* puts an end to cake-eating which is what a WS will do indefinitely if allowed to


26 yrs. married
There's nothing more powerful than a woman with an open heart ......
Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Vittoria] #41109
12/28/10 04:07 AM
12/28/10 04:07 AM
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Lil Offline OP

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Originally Posted By: Vittoria

I don't think of a Plan B letter as a love letter, ending with one I love you, yes/maybe depending on the
sitch and state of the WS (is WS waffling between OP and BS).
Can you clarify what you think of as a 'love letter', please and thank you!

References to OP, I don't think there should be any. Mentioning the OP steers the focus off of the BS and the M.
The Plan B letter should be strictly about the BS and the WS, and the path back to the M, IMO.


The love letter idea for me, is NOT writing something that says in essence "hey, [Bleep!], dump the maggot and get yer butt back home or I'll take you for everything you've got" grin

Seriously, I do believe you catch more flies with honey, than vinegar, and it costs nothing to be polite, and show some care in a plan B letter. After all, the WS who reads it is going to just see it as a punishment letter anyway, you don't actually need to add more fuel to their mistaken, foggy beliefs.

So start the letter nicely (dear WS, I have been your spouse for X years and up until recently have cherished that time), then all the rest of the stuff including the fact that the reason for writing the letter is to protect any good feelings you have remaining for the WS. I also consider the apology to be an important part of showing the love. As the apology is written down on paper, it cannot be denied by the WS, like they choose to do with anything the BS says. The only hearing more selective than a WS, is that of kids being asked to pick up their bedrooms. You dont have to write the apology, and some may chose not to. I just did because as I have said many times, my MAJOR reason for going all the way thru plan A and plan B was so I was 100% positive I had done all I could to save my M. Nothing left to tick or cross off. No guilt, no remorse, a clear conscience for the rest of my life.

The only reference to the OP needs to be "until OP is out of your life/you agree to NC with OP, there will be no recovery". Its why I said to limit it smile Believe or not, I have read peoples first draft PBL's that banged on and on about the OP to the point, they might as well call it "I want to love bust your butt by running down the OP while I still can".


AKA Lildoggie

Just found out about your spouses affair?
Infidelity Guide For The Betrayed Spouse


Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Vittoria] #41110
12/28/10 04:08 AM
12/28/10 04:08 AM
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Lil Offline OP

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Originally Posted By: Vittoria
red=mine

Plan B is not to punish the wayward spouse - although they will feel that it is, and behave accordingly. Plan B has many purposes:

* to let the WS see what life with out the BS will be like (a preview of divorce)
* to stop the BS from being exposed to the ongoing abuse that is infidelity
* to remove the BS from the never ending drama's the WS and OP often thrive upon
* to protect the BS's love bank to it does not get withdrawn to the level of hate
* puts the burden of filling the WS's EN's entirely upon the OP - something very few can do for very long

* allows the BS healing time, time to make a life for themselves apart from the WS, and recover personally.
(this is a huge one, you don't realize how distraught and exhausted you are emotionally, until the drama has stopped)

* allows the love balance the BS has for the WS to die away naturally

* puts an end to cake-eating which is what a WS will do indefinitely if allowed to


excellent additions!


AKA Lildoggie

Just found out about your spouses affair?
Infidelity Guide For The Betrayed Spouse


Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Lil] #41991
12/30/10 02:19 AM
12/30/10 02:19 AM
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Vittoria Offline
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Originally Posted By: lildoggie
Originally Posted By: Vittoria

I don't think of a Plan B letter as a love letter, ending with one I love you, yes/maybe depending on the
sitch and state of the WS (is WS waffling between OP and BS).
Can you clarify what you think of as a 'love letter', please and thank you!

References to OP, I don't think there should be any. Mentioning the OP steers the focus off of the BS and the M.
The Plan B letter should be strictly about the BS and the WS, and the path back to the M, IMO.


The love letter idea for me, is not writing something that says in essence "hey, *ssh*l*, dump the maggot and get yer butt back home or I'll do you for everything" grin

Seriously, I do believe you catch more flies with honey, than vinegar,and its costs nothing to be polite, and showing some care in a plan B letter. After all, the WS who reads it is going to just see it as a punishment letter anyway, so you don't actually need to add more fuel to their beliefs.

So start the letter nicely (dear WS, I have been your spouse for X years and up until recently have cherished that time), then all the rest of the stuff including the fact that the reason for writing the letter is to protect any good feelings you have remaining for the WS. I also consider the apology to be an important part of showing the love. The apology is written down on paper and cannot be denied by the WS, like they choose to do with anything the BS says. The only hearing more selective than a WS, is that of kids being asked to pick up their bedrooms. You dont have to write the apology, and some may chose not to. I just did because as I have said many times, my MAJOR reason for going all the way thru plan A and plan B was so I was 100% positive I had done all I could to save my M. Nothing left to tick or cross off. No guilt, no remorse, a clear conscience for the rest of my life.

The only reference to the OP needs to be "until OP is out of your life/you agree to NC with OP, there will be no recovery". Its why I said to limit it smile Believe or not, I have read peoples first draft PBL's that banged on and on about the OP to the point, they might as well call it "I want to love bust your butt about OP while I still can".

Totally agree. I believe that we are on the same page, the clarification was more for posters who might
misinterpret the meaning, the ones that aren't real familiar with the purpose.

Thanks for expanding on it, your lists are good! smile


26 yrs. married
There's nothing more powerful than a woman with an open heart ......
Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Vittoria] #41998
12/30/10 02:33 AM
12/30/10 02:33 AM
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One of the ways of looking at Plan B, which is a horrible name, is to call it the protection phase. Penny Tupy devised that name, or had some help devising that name and it resonates better, imho. I might even know the source of the "Help" but won't say until they out themselves wink

Larry


It's often the truth we hide from ourselves that causes the most damage in life.

My old email address no longer works.
Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Larry] #42005
12/30/10 02:43 AM
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I actually like that phrase better, Larry. (Protection Phase)
It explain the purpose much more clearer.

Last edited by Vittoria; 12/30/10 02:44 AM.

26 yrs. married
There's nothing more powerful than a woman with an open heart ......
Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Vittoria] #43282
01/01/11 02:58 PM
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Vittoria Offline
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Wanted to tuck this here for easy reference, wasn't sure where else to tuck it.
This sounds like a great way to communicate kids schedules and transfers for BS's in Plan B, with WS's.
Eliminates the drama associated with texting.

http://www.cozi.com/family-calendar.htm

Thanks goes to Allen, he was the first to post on this link.


26 yrs. married
There's nothing more powerful than a woman with an open heart ......
Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Vittoria] #46371
01/07/11 01:39 AM
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test post

edit ...... nope, didn't work.

Last edited by Vittoria; 01/07/11 01:40 AM.

26 yrs. married
There's nothing more powerful than a woman with an open heart ......
Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Vittoria] #46523
01/07/11 04:56 AM
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Lil Offline OP

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you were too fast smile


AKA Lildoggie

Just found out about your spouses affair?
Infidelity Guide For The Betrayed Spouse


Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Lil] #48519
01/10/11 07:06 PM
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These are the 3 best known "plan B" letters. Dr Harley's is primarily directed at those who are experiencing infidelity in the marital breakdown, Dr Dobson and Penny T's are more generic. Because I want them all on one post for comparison, I have coloured each separately so as to make it easier to identify the start and finish of each one.

Dr W. Harley. Surviving an Affair - pg80:

My Dear Sue,

I apologize to you for my part in creating an environment that helped make your affair with Greg possible. I foolishly pursued my career without understanding my responsibility to meet your most important emotional needs. I was not there for you when you needed me the most, and we are now both suffering for my mistake.

I am willing to avoid the mistakes I've made in the past and create a new life for both of us that will meet your needs. But I cannot do that until you end your relationship with Greg once and for all.

Until then, I will avoid seeing you or talking to you. I will also not be able to help you financially. Our friends, Jane and Paul have agreed to help make arrangements for you to visit the children whenever you would like. But I will not be here when you visit. If you want to communicate about the children or any other matter, it will have to be through Jane and Paul.

I ask you to respect my decision to separate from you this way. You must know about the suffering I have endured because of your relationship with Greg, and I simply cannot be with you any longer, knowing that you are with him. I still love you but I cannot see you under these conditions.

As soon as you are willing to permanently separate from Greg and are willing to follow the measures that were suggested to ensure total separation, I will be willing to discuss our future together.

I want us to be able to rebuild our marriage some day. I want us to be able to meet each other's emotional needs and to avoid doing anything to hurt each other. We need to build a new lifestyle in which everything we do makes us both happy. Then there will never again be a reason for us to separate. I want to be your best friend, someone who is always there for you when you need me. And I want you as my best friend.

I loved you when we married and I continue to love you right up to this day. I just cannot be with you or help you as long as you are seeing Greg.

With my love,
Jon

(Note to Greg: I love Sue with all my heart and am willing to do whatever it takes to make her happy. I will wait for her to give me that chance.)


Penny Tuppy: Protection Phase Letter:

Dear ________,

I love you and I married you for life. I want to remain married to you. I am willing and committed to doing what it takes to be the spouse you've always wanted and to address the things that I did wrong in our marriage.

The affair/neglect/abuse is so painful for me that it will destroy the love I have for you. In order to protect those feelings I must end all contact with you. As soon as the affair/neglect/abuse is over I would love to talk with you about our future. Until that time please respect my wish for no contact whatsoever in any form.

In an emergency you can reach me through ______. Arrangements for seeing children and handling finances are_____.

Sincerely,
[YOUR NAME]


Dr Dobson - Love must be tough:

John, I've been through some very tough moments since you decided to leave, you know. My love for you is so profound that I just couldn't face the possibility of life without you. To a person like me who expected to marry only once and to remain committed for life, it is a severe shock to see our relationship begin to unravel. Nevertheless, I have done some intense soul searching, and I now realize that I have been attempting to hold you against your will. That simply can't be done. As I reflect on our courtship and early years together, I'm reminded that you married me of your own free choice. I did not blackmail you or twist your arm or offer you a bribe. It was a decision you made without pressure from me. Now you say you want out of the marriage and, obviously, I have to let you go…You are free to go. If you never call me again, then I will accept your decision. I admit that this entire experience has been painful, but I'm going to make. The Lord has been with me thus far, and He'll go with me in the future…I will pray for you and trust that God will guide you in the years ahead.


AKA Lildoggie

Just found out about your spouses affair?
Infidelity Guide For The Betrayed Spouse


Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Lil] #49827
01/12/11 07:17 PM
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For those of you struggling to put together this type of letter, lildoggie and I have put together some tips/explanations to help with this.
Any questions, comments ...... throw them out here, they're all welcome. There are many of us around who understand this type of letter.
It's a hard one to write, that's for sure, it's also a necessary one to ensure that the WS fully understands your intentions.


The Darkside Letter

Constructive
* Let him/her know that you believe in the ability to recover your M and make it better, and that this is possible.

* Write one I love you as a simple statement, not gushing repeatedly throughout a paragraph.
This can be annoying to an entrenched WS and gives the impression of a pining BS.

* Make clear that you are certain that you will not stay in a marriage where you share your spouse with anyone.

* Let him/her know how hurtful it is to continue on with any contact with them while they are in the A. Stating your hurt is truth, it's reality, this does not fall into any lovebuster category.

* Make it clear that to preserve love for the WS it is necessary to stop all contact with them. You will not accept voice calls, text, or email.
Sticking to this boundary that you are setting up is vital to your well being and starves your spouse of any 'fix' that they get from you.

* Make it clear that this no contact with them is not an option and one that you need to be respected.

* Provide info on who/how to communicate child exchanges, legal dealings, emergencies. Willingness to discuss reconciliation is to go through the IM/filter person. This last bit is important since a WS may try to break NC with the BS and use M talk as an excuse.

* Include your conditions of their return to the M. No contact forever with OM/OW, this is non-negotiable. Marriage counseling/support/program
of your choice. (you can use those exact words since the specific support can be figured out later if need be)
Complete transparency as dictated by the BS. These may include all passwords, free view of cell phones etc.
(There are more steps taken to rebuild the M and heal the BS, these can be discussed when/if the WS returns to the M.)

* Make a copy or two, just in case the WS accidentally loses the letter and plays confused over the conditions.

You are offering them the M as a choice, with conditions, while protecting yourself from the A drama and allowing yourself to heal.
This letter is about you, what you will accept. What you will accept is all that you have control over.



Options to include (some folks like more in a letter, this is yours to write not ours)
* Use a statement that conveys hope for a future with them.

* Can include eliminating the factors that made the A possible in the first place. This may or may not be relevant.

* Acknowledge your wrongdoings and give recognition to the fact that you are working to correct these. (The WS usually does notice these changes)

* End the letter with sincerely, lovingly, or just your name.

Not constructive
* Discuss or warn your spouse of going dark prior to letter, remember that this is not a threat or ultimatum. It is a boundary that you enforce.

* Make this a lengthy letter, max 4 short paragraphs is best (only one with your feelings, all else is info). The attention span of a WS to your words is limited.

* Acknowledging their A actions as being right in any way or take responsibility for the A.

* Stating that you will love the WS forever, this implies that you will wait indefinitely for them to return to the M.

* Repeat yourself over and over, one paragraph with one purpose.

* Using phrases like 'I deserve .....', a WS will turn this around and tell themselves the same, the very phrase that warped their thinking into an A.

* Give indication that you support their actions in D.

* Using this letter as a ' I've had it, I'm done, hope you have a good life .... ' message. If you are done with the M and refuse any reconciliation, this is not likely the letter that you want to use.

Remember that you didn't force your spouse to meet you at the altar with words, likewise, you can't force them to return to the M with words.


26 yrs. married
There's nothing more powerful than a woman with an open heart ......
Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Vittoria] #50388
01/13/11 04:05 PM
01/13/11 04:05 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 3,611
wiser_now Offline
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wiser_now  Offline
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A Personal Reflection on the Importance of this step in recovering your marriage:

Going Dark (also called Plan B) is not about the other person (your cheating spouse). This is the statement that has been said directly and implied throughout this this thread and bears repeating: IT IS NOT ABOUT THEM. IT IS ABOUT YOU. Period.

It is about PROTECTING YOURSELF from the drama an affair brings into YOUR LIFE (and your children's lives, if you have them).

Yes, you want to save your marriage. Of course! But what you're doing so far hasn't worked anyway, has it? Time to try something new and bold.

The posts (and links) throughout this thread are excellent and tell you step by step how to achieve a perfect Plan B.

I'd like to focus on this: TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF. TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF. TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF.

If you get the added benefit of saving your marriage, it is a blessing, to be sure. And yes, your unsaid ultimate GOAL in this plan may be to save your marriage... and if that's the case there are some things to consider:

Your spouse has to want to return - and they won't if they don't you as an attractive alternative. I'm not talking about physical attractiveness here, though it may factor if this is one of their emotional needs.

I'm talking about something that few of us want to admit...

Think about this for a moment - OP is light, happy to see them, no strings attached, no bills, no diapers... just 100% joy (not saying this is TRUE, but how it LOOKS to the WS)...

... and then there's you... the betrayed spouse... sad, mopey, desperate, clingy and angry... wanting answers and money and help. (TOTALLY NORMAL, by the way.)

So, here's the neat thing about going dark. You're going through the feelings that are very normal and THEY DON'T SEE THEM. They don't know what the heck is going on with you. They don't see the anger, the hurt or the struggles. They have no idea if you're happy or sad, moving forward or backward.

At the same time, you have now allowed the OP to do all the work of care-taking and meeting the emotional needs of your spouse. And this, quite often, is a very good thing. See, up until this point, you have been taking the brunt of your spouses negative emotions... possibly doing their laundry... you know, those everyday things that happen day to day.

Now, the OP will have to take it all. And most, as we have seen time and time again, DON'T WANT IT. They want the la-la happy times with the OP... not reality.

I know, I know... you think they'll forget you. They won't. But I they might want to if they continue having to deal with all the emotions you have inside - again, totally normal and valid.

Many wayward spouses thrive on the drama they create - and many betrayed spouses thrive on bits of information about what the wayward is doing... and then wallowing in it. Plan B saves you both kinds of drama.

I wrote this because I am home reading today and see throughout so many threads, time and time again, excuses for not going dark (or Plan B in MB parlance). It is such an incredibly powerful tool that I hate to see it maligned or misunderstood. There are links and advice throughout this thread... don't just listen to me.

My post will bring this back up to the top... and I hope others in limbo will read through this... and find hope.


A happy marriage is a long conversation which always seems too short. --Andre Maurois

Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: wiser_now] #54622
01/20/11 01:57 AM
01/20/11 01:57 AM
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 524
G
girlfromipanema Offline
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girlfromipanema  Offline
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Posts: 524
Would it be possible to implement Plan B when you work with your spouse?

Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: girlfromipanema] #54691
01/20/11 04:26 AM
01/20/11 04:26 AM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 7,565
New Zealand
Lil Offline OP

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Lil  Offline OP

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Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 7,565
New Zealand
Difficult, since Plan B is about removing yourself from any and all interactions with the WS.

Faith works with her XWH, she has turned plan B while seeing him and OW into an art form. Essentially she pretends he does not exist, unless she can do so in a way that allows her to maintain the upper hand. I gather he finds it very uncomfortable. She is not particularly interested in recovery though.


AKA Lildoggie

Just found out about your spouses affair?
Infidelity Guide For The Betrayed Spouse


Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Lil] #55371
01/21/11 05:32 AM
01/21/11 05:32 AM
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,409
for to fade Offline
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for to fade  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,409
It feels like I am being punished, and I think he is fine, he drives right behind our house to go to and from work. He isn't calling. I am thinking I don't know what to think. What if I forget him? Can that happen? Anyway, I read the bible before I go to sleep at night, if I wake up at night I sometimes cry, I really miss him. This is so unfair, I was true to him, am true to him now. I hope this is normal.

tink

Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: girlfromipanema] #55372
01/21/11 05:34 AM
01/21/11 05:34 AM
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,409
for to fade Offline
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for to fade  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,409
Originally Posted By: girlfromipanema
Would it be possible to implement Plan B when you work with your spouse?


I hope so, since the wayward found it possible to cheat while working with their spouse.

If you worked with them, you would just have to. How to do that without going nuts?

tink

Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: ] #55465
01/21/11 03:19 PM
01/21/11 03:19 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 5,072
SW Chicago 'burbs
Mark1952 Offline
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Mark1952  Offline
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Posts: 5,072
SW Chicago 'burbs
Can't really Plan B while working together or living in the same house or attending the same functions week after week. Seeing the WS defeats the point of Plan B which is not really to do anything to or about the affair but to prevent further hurt and suffering by the BS in response to a continuing affair in light of discovery and confrontation.

The same applies to NC between affair partners. Can't work side by side and have no contact. Can't be at all the same places, especially places relative to or that led to the affair and have no contact.

What if you work together?

Somebody has to not work there for it to actually do what it is supposed to do.

Tink, it is normal for you to miss him, to long for him, to wonder about the "what if" kind of stuff. And yes, it might be possible that you will forget him in time.

In Plan B the BS gets to begin the healing process that MUST happen before building a new marriage can happen and also must happen before building a new relationship of any kind with someone else can take place Plan B stops the emotional roller coaster with time and allows for choices made from logic, data, information, clear thoughts instead of emotional reactions based on fear, anxiety, self doubt...

Harley suggests a two year Plan B for two different and important reasons. First, the majority of affairs ends before that time and in many cases the wayward spouse seeks to return to the marriage or at least makes some attempt to negotiate return though fear of reprisal often prevents any real remorse early on.

The second reason Harley suggests two years is that two years is about the time it takes to become emotionally stable after a traumatic event and that assumes you actually WORK at becoming emotionally stable.

So Plan B must stop the insanity, progress through the steps of grieving, arrive at the place of acceptance and then begin to make choices regarding the rest of your life without the fear, longing, fond memories, anger, anxiety...ALL the emotions that poor out during the process.

Every time you interact, attempt to negotiate return of the wayward spouse or inventory the memories of good times your emotional clock is reset to zero and you have to start again. Each time takes a little less time to process since unproductive steps will be skipped in subsequent attempts to move on but before long the longing and good memories are replaced by loathing, hatred and the once so missed WS is now despised as the devil or a demon from hell.

If you haven't chosen to move on and divorce after some short period of trying to bring the affair to an end, and for some reason see a possible hope to reconcile in the future, then Plan B lets you stop being damaged beyond what you can recover from in a reasonable amount of time while waiting to either decide to accept the inevitable or the affair to end and attempts at reconciliation to be made.

You see, as long as you are waking up in the middle of the night and crying over what might have been, you are not yet at the place where you can make choices that are based on what you know to be true or what you actually choose to do. As long as the missing him is the defining factor of your reality, you can't move on and unless the affair ends quickly and he becomes a model FWS, full of remorse, regret and restitution you won't even know what to do if he tries to reconcile.


mark1952.ma@gmail.com

I Was Thinking...

The secret to having a good marriage is to understand that marriage must be total, it must be permanent, and it must be equal.-- Frank Pittman
Re: The Next Stage - Plan B, Protection Phase [Re: Mark1952] #55683
01/21/11 07:42 PM
01/21/11 07:42 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 1,593
MyRevelation Offline
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MyRevelation  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 1,593
Personally, Plan B, as practiced and preached at MB, is just too elementary school for me to be taken seriously.

It makes a weak BH appear even weaker ... "I'm seperating myself to preserve any remaining love I have for you" just screams WEAKNESS by running away from your problems, rather than facing up to them head on.

Also, involving an IM into your marital problems is too much like passing notes in grade school. PLUS, it inserts another 3rd party into your M, which is what got you here in the first place. Once again, it sends a message to WW that BH isn't strong enough to take care of his own business and just strengthens her lack of respect for BH.

BUT ... on a positive note if your name is [edit] ... it keeps people in limbo long enough to sell them additional books and counselling sessions. wink

Edit way after the fact based on a notify. MyRev, you are welcome to take issue with the methods and offer your own recommendations. However, you are not free to accuse someone of creating a failing strategy in order to make money. This is defamatory even if the person is a public figure.

Last edited by Larry; 09/15/11 03:48 PM. Reason: TOS violation - defamatory
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