Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Not Just N1H1, Immunize Against an Emotional Affair!

Posted by Michele Olson
In a New York Post article, Dr. Keith Ablow talks about the idea that almost all marriages are difficult. He proposes that idea should be a relief to any husband or wife who thinks that life as usual after a 5 or 10 year marriage, and the normalcy that sets in, is happening to “just them.”

Dr. Ablow says that living together dissolves a lot of the boundaries that women and men normally experience. We see each other all the time, hair out of place, not dressed up…the real deal. This can lead to walls of silence and resentment…possibly as a way to just get some personal space.

Interesting idea.

He believes this is where men and women are vulnerable to emotional affairs. His five point plan to prevent that includes:

1) Don’t assume you know everything about your spouse. He points out that people in a marriage can remain strangers for a lifetime. It brings to mind taking your spouse for granted by the way you could ignore exploring their ideas or feelings. This is not the way you would treat a new acquaintance.
2) If you’ve become distant, make it a point to explore the emotional life of your spouse.
3) A tactic? Ask your spouse to share with you three things, which could include childhood, that they have never shared with another person.
4) Then you do the same thing. Share three things. Basically you are becoming more vulnerable to each than you are to anyone else.
5) Trade three secrets about what you crave sexually, even if it ‘s fantasy. (For example, your spouse can’t literally fly in on a magic carpet if that’s what you would find exciting.)

Dr. Ablow says these five steps are like a vaccine against the real epidemic of emotional affairs.

What do you think about the idea of taking a spouse for granted over time? Is it easy to fall into a pattern and stop seeing the other person for who they really are?

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