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Posted on 01/22/2018

The Blame Game: A Relationship Hanging in the Balance

The Blame Game: A Relationship Hanging in the Balance

Joanne hadn’t realized that it had been years since she and her husband Bill had even looked into each other’s eyes. They were both flooded with emotion when they finally did – for more than three seconds – in the counseling office. They missed one another. Joanne had finally owned up to the fact that she had been taking her anger out on him for the past 10 years. He had wanted her to start exercising so that she’d have more of the sexy body he was attracted to when they were younger. She was deeply offended, even though she knew she was out of shape and overweight. Joanne had been punishing him, nonetheless, and she was finally admitting it.

But Joanne wanted to go deeper. She talked about being at a place in her life when she knew it was time to either get real or get out. She wanted to get real and she wanted Bill to join her. Bill, as it turns out, wasn’t so sure. He certainly talked about wanting a more intimate relationship but Bill wanted his cake and to eat it too. He didn’t want to have to stand up for anything or to take risks or be vulnerable with Joanne. He wanted Joanne to carry the relationship load, as she always had, and he’d just tag along. If he didn’t like something he’d twist it and blame her for not taking his desires into account. Joanne was done with that game.

She got a hold of herself and stopped taking his blame. She waited for him to initiate sex rather than initiating it herself all the time. Bill hemmed and hawed, jerked and finger pointed, worried and closed off – for weeks. Joanne wavered from time to time, afraid she’d lose him, but she remained determined to have a better relationship. While anxious, Joanne grew in confidence. Will Bill join her? Have you been in Joanne’s position? Bill’s? Can you relate? We’d love to hear your story!

If you also find that your relationship is struggling and you cannot find your way back to each other, please consider finding a Marriage Friendly Therapist in your area.

Presented to hide client identifying information by Miriam Bellamy.

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