Sunday, December 7, 2008

If Your Husband Decides to Leave You, But You Don't Want Him to Go

You may think that since I often write about saving marriages, I advise women who ask me how to keep their husbands from leaving to pull out all of the stops - to do anything to keep their husbands from walking out the door. This assumption would be mostly wrong. I do believe in saving marriages, but I also firmly believe that there is a right way and a wrong way to get your husband to stay, as well as a short term versus a long term fix. Obviously, restoring a healthy, stable marriage requires a long term solution that takes a bit more patience and planning.
I do understand the inclination to either beg him not to go, or to go the opposite route and turn angry or give ultimatums. I tried both of these approaches and neither worked. So, in this article I will share the approach that worked for me and many others who share their stories with me on my blog.
Let Him Think You're On His Side: I want you to think about something for a second. When you want to do something or make a decision, do you like it when someone tries to talk you out of it? And, once they do, doesn't that make you want to move forward that much more? By trying to change your husband's mind, you're really implying that your needs and wants are more important to you than his. And, if you want to lure him back, it's not good that you're showing him this.
The better tactic is to present yourself as the woman who wants you both to be happy. Tell him that you love him more than anything and have always just wanted him to be happy. Agree that the marriage isn't making either of you happy right now and a break just might be a great idea. In fact, tell him that you wouldn't mind the space yourself (you must be very convincing with this, however.)
Yes, you are bluffing. And yes, there is a slight chance he is going to take you up on this. But, what have you done? You've jumped right to his side. You've presented yourself as someone who wants to help him get what he wants. So, this has helped you in a few ways. First, he's no longer going to try to dodge or avoid you. Second, you made yourself an ally rather than an adversary. This is absolutely vital in the next step of the plan.
Presenting Yourself In An Attractive Rather Than An Unattractive Way (Even If You Have To Fake It): I have spoken with many men in my research and I can say with absolute certainty that they don't find a woman who is degrading herself to keep them at all attractive. In fact, it just makes them want to escape that much faster.
I know it can feel right to take immediate and drastic action, but resist this urge at all cost. It will only push him further way. Instead, hold your head high and try to act as you did when he first fell in love with you. Pin point exactly those qualities he loved about you and put them on full display. Get out and have fun. Put a smile on your face, even if it feels fake and your heart is secretly breaking. Make sure he knows you aren't waiting around or acting in a way that is beneath you.
Now, don't mistake this for acting in a reckless and non genuine way meant to make him jealous. Men often see through this and only see it as more desperate game playing. What you're going for is appearing as the wife who very much doesn't want her husband to leave, but who respects his wishes and is going to conduct herself as the woman he previously knew.
The women who reject these suggestions often see them as too risky. But I disagree because all of the other desperate or manipulative things only work once or in the short term because the husband's heart is not really in it. With this plan, you're changing it up, turning the tables, and emerging as a better version of yourself. I can not tell you how many times this peaks a husband's interest and he often wants to know what in the world is going on.
But, you can't fold too quickly with this. Many make the mistake of reverting back to old ways once the husband shows the slightest interest. Don't make this mistake. You want him to become the pursuer and you want to move slowly until you are both equally committed and back on track.
When my husband wanted to leave (but I didn't want him to), I made many of mistakes I discussed in this article based on fear. I stalked, begged, threatened, tried to overcompensate, and acted very badly. These things back fired. Thankfully, I finally realized I was doing more harm than good and was able to change course using the tactics discussed here and save the marriage. You can read my very personal story on my blog at
by:Leslie cane

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