Mona Barbera
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For Women Only: Affair Proof Your Marriage
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For Women Only: Affair Proof Your Marriage

For women only: There is a lot you can do to affair-proof your marriage. Follow these guidelines and you will be doing what is within your power to do, you’ll feel more peaceful and serene within yourself, and you’ll get more of the love you yearn for.

Many men don’t look emotional – they don’t show their worries, fears, or vulnerabilities on their faces and they don’t talk about them. But don’t be fooled – men are just as sensitive as women. They feel bad when they fail you or fail in their work or relationships with their children, friends, and colleagues. When men feel bad at home they are more likely to look elsewhere for emotional support and appreciation.

There are two main things you can do:

1. Express your appreciation. Try to give more appreciation than criticism. In fact, try to give seven times more appreciation than criticism. Each time you get ready to complain – put it off til you have given 7 appreciations. For more about how to give feedback and get good responses to your complaints, read about Feedback.

2. Stay calm and connected when you feel hurt or disappointed. Of course there are times when your husband does things that hurt you, and you will feel anger, arguing, criticism, or punitive distance welling up in you. Before you express yourself, you must pay attention to your own connection, calm, and curiosity. Have you lost connection with your mate? Are you convinced about your own experience and no longer curious about your mate’s experience? Are you so agitated that you can’t be clear and you can’t listen?

If so, take 100% responsibility for your own loss of connection, curiosity, and calm. Leave your mate out of it – you don’t have control over him, just over yourself. Put your energy and focus where you can actually have an impact: yourself.

Next, give better back than you feel you are receiving.
When there is:
Criticism, you can be curious
Agitation, you can be calm
Judgment, you can be compassionate
Anxiety, you can be confident
Fear, you can be courageous
Confusion, you can be clear
Distance, you can be connected
Repetition, you can be creative

Giving Better Back, like all worthwhile endeavors, is simple but not easy. Read more about giving better back from “Bring Yourself to Love: How Couples Can Turn Disconnection into Intimacy,” or watch a video.

• the time to do this is when you feel hurt and disappointed – you can turn those experiences into moments of connection and intimacy – without giving up your feelings

• Find out all about giving better back in those moments of hurt and and competent – without giving up your true feelings.  In fact, giving better back will help you be more clear and confident about how you feel, but without the criticism, contempt, arguing, moralizing, or punitive distancing that is so damaging to everyone.

Mona Barbara Photo Mona Barbera
Dr. Mona is a psychologist, couples therapist, couples workshop leader, speaker, and the author of Bring Yourself to Love: How Couples Can Turn Disconnection into Intimacy.
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