Taking myself in hand: a personal journey with shared results

Stressed by arguments between my husband and myself, I searched the internet for helpful sites and advice. I'm grateful for finding Taken In Hand, and I think implemented quietly and deliberately in my own way, taking myself in hand will ease my husband's and my mental health and peace of mind.

Generally, my husband and I are mature, happy and energetic people. Generally, we would not seek marriage counselling or would either of us consult a therapist, really, for anything. However...

We can fight a lot and a few times, our arguments have nearly torn us apart. Such extreme fights leave me feeling weak, broken and
hopeless. For my husband, I think fighting leaves him feeling trapped in a marriage filled with rage, mis-trust and unpredictability.

We have a few problems, real issues, that we need to sort out. Financial-type things, with work and money. Buying a house and my pregnancy have also added stress to our lives, although of course, these are beautiful and good things we both want in our lives.

Nevertheless, somehow we let these problems boil over into something that seethes, that elicits disrespectful comments and silent treatment and makes us walk a little bit away from our relationship. I'm sorry to say that I often cause the fights, even if the problems are shared. I am a little more high-strung, a little more nervous than my husband, who usually is calm, with a trust in the future and our ability to progress.

So I want to change my behaviour in subtle ways. I don't want to fight with my husband anymore. I don't want to pick and argue where it's not necessary. While either one of us may find a situation provacative, I want to learn to let things go, to be peaceful, and generally, to let my husband guide us. My methods or preferences may be right; but his may also be right, and I have learned in this world, there are many ways to go about living. But two people who share a life and want to raise a family might be better off with one person in charge.

While I loved being in charge of my own life when I was single, I think life might be sweeter and our relationship much smoother, if ultimately, I let my husband's will prevail. He's not a demanding man anyway and has shown great respect for my intelligence and ingenuity. But when we have discussed a situation and he feels right about his course, I need to learn how to let go. And I need to let go of the small things, the minor differences in our attitudes or choices. I want him to feel in charge of his own private life and of our shared life. I may provide advice and opinion, but my Love should feel that his word will stand and that I trust he has made a conclusion logically and with our well-being first-and-foremost.

I don't know what my husband would think of Taken in Hand. I wonder if he would find it old-fashioned, or think that I wish to crush my spirit or even that I am using an alibi to load the responsibilities on him. The article, Effect positive change by acting as if... is sort of where my thinking is at. I want to behave better. I want to be a better wife to my husband and I want to find ways to get along without losing myself or alienating my husband.

I can learn my lessons and even be brought through Noone's four stages of spanking through mere conversation and stern talkings-to. I do not need to be spanked. I have been broken by argument and want never to go down that path again.

So for me, exploring Taken In Hand is personal, a journey for myself to find peace and mental well-being and to maintain and grow the love and respect my husband and I have always had for each other. Yet as personal as this journey may be, I think the results will be shared between us. I expect my husband will subconscientiously react to my new behaviour. I think he will find that his word stands and that I respect him greatly. I believe that the more I "act as if" , the more he will find that I am in in his hands.


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Try it

You don't need to tell him .Just accept his authority, argue less. I always try to be very positive when something that I need happens. I might say—I like it when you lay the law down like that or it makes me feel good when you take that decision.

Of course if his greatest desire is a woman telling him what to do as it can well be for some men then it's not going to work at all.

Accepting his authority no matter what.

My husband and I have been married for 33 years and have always been a very close and loving couple. We are new to a Taken In Hand relationship and are growing and maturing in this relationship. It is amazing to see the growth in my husband as he has become more and more empowered by this relationship. It is amazing how my love for him has also grown in a way I never thought possible.

My husband has recently suffered a stroke and even whilst in rehabilitation he clearly is still in control and is in charge. When I lost it recently in the hospital and was abusive to the nurses, my husband looked at me and advised me that I should apologise and my behaviour was unacceptable. I was mortified, I was stressed and upset and angry, but still in his condition he was head of the household. I did as he instructed and apologised profusely for my behaviour to the nurse. I then apologised to my husband. He has set the guidelines and I will abide with them, with love and respect.

Trust is Essential

Welcome Kimmy, and I hope this site helps you with the stresses in your marriage.

One thing you said really jumped out at me:
"My methods or preferences may be right; but his may also be right".

This seems to be a fairly common difficulty in relationships—fighting for power. (And kudos to you for recognizing that you both have valid methods/preferences!)

It seems to me to defer to your husband in decisions takes a great deal of trust. Trust that he listens to your needs/wants/desires, and considers/protects them in his decisions.

As the man in a Taken In Hand relationship, I see this responsibility as probably the greatest challenge to a successful relationship. I absolutely must ensure that my decisions are made with great consideration of impact to her.

In a way this makes decisions a little easier—in previous relationships, all the little day-to-day decisions could be overwhelming—"who's need do I prioritize, hers or mine?" "Which of these choices is she going to freak out about?"

Now the decisions are made on "what makes it easier/better for her?" or "What's best for the relationship?"

Since the final say is mine, I have no doubts about "getting what I want"—this liberates me to focus on "what does shewant?"

All this because she trusts me implicitly, thus granting me authority. I feel an incredible obligation to continue to deserve that trust—above all else.

I think any woman considering a Taken In Hand-like relationship must ask:
"How much do I trust my husband's abilities to make decisions for me/us?"

Even if the answer is "not enough" at the moment, it's possible he may step up just by being asked to! If he's a good man, I imagine having his wife asking him to take on this responsibility will make him more conscientious in his decisions.

It did for me.