Baby Steps & Hopefully Good Reads

So upon the recommendations of a couple of you, I purchased three different books last week for Charlie and I to read together to hopefully jump start some of the tough conversations we have in our future.

For Women Only

For Men Only

The Introvert and Extrovert In Love: Making It Work When Opposites Attract

An old blog friend of mine suggested the For Women Only / For Men Only books, and here is what she had to say about them.

Both books are pretty short, concise, and easy to read. But they are based on scientific research and polls from men and women from all walks of life.

We give these books to all our college students who are getting married.

You take the for Men Only copy, cross out “men” and write “Charlie.”;) then you read the book with highlighters, sharpies, and pens. Cross out what doesn’t really apply to you. Highlight what is every important. And write notes, of encouragement, suggestions, specifications, etc…

Charlie does the same with the For Women Only book.

Then you guys give each other your custom edited books and you now have a pretty good road map/insight into your spouses inner workings.

I love the idea that no one book is going to be perfect for you and your relationship and somehow instantly solve things, but by customizing them we can really drill down to what is important to us and how we can help each other understand what is really wanted and needed for us both to feel loved and fulfilled and happy in this marriage.

The other book is one another old blog friend of mine found and sent to me, and as (at least to me) it seems like the crux of a lot of our issues lately, I’m really excited to read that one as well.

Can I just say that it’s pretty amazing to me that women I met 6+ years ago through blogging are now such great resources for me in a completely different sort of tough time? I love you all.

At any rate, quite honestly, Saturday night was another bad night full of talks of leaving and more conversation about our marriage and tears about how things got like this. Sunday for Easter was good, and Monday we both just ignored the entire situation. On Tuesday night after work Charlie and I talked a bit more about things, and when I told him I had gotten these books for us to read while we figure out what counselor to go to, he just sort of laughed and shook his head. I kinda sorta flipped and told him I wasn’t going to put the effort into trying to fix our marriage if he wasn’t going to, and he got more serious and assured me that I wouldn’t be feeling like I was putting in work for nothing – he was willing to do the work too. We shall see – I hope that these books are at least eye opening for us and a jumping off point for us to have more tough discussions together in the future. One year ago we were in such a good place, and I really want to get back there…



  1. You CAN get there. I know you can. You two have gone through too much to let this amazing relationship go. xoxoxo

  2. I love the idea of those first two books. I’m ordering them right now. RIGHT NOW. BAM – DONE.

    This is not easy, it’s not going to get easier – I think it will get harder before it gets easier. But it takes works, huh? And sometimes, like Noemi asked just last week, “how many fucks do I have to give about my marriage?” I think that’s a very valid question. I asked the same thing of myself a couple of years ago. You just get tired. And I’m not going to say to “just keep swimming.” Right now, it’s ok to just tread.


  3. Melissa · · Reply

    I hope they help you guys. It’s awesome to hear he’s willing to put in the work too-that’s great to hear. Thinking of you guys.
    I’m going to look up those books too!!

  4. Rough Patches are hard…9 years in and sometimes we still run into a rough patch. Praying, you both have the courage to see it throughto the other side. The one thing I know in the 9 years i’ve been married is each each time we get through a rough patch we love each other more and are more dedicated to each other, I pray this is the same for you.

  5. Sorry I haven’t commented on the last post where you talked about your recent struggles between you and Charlie. I have been thinking of you often though and keep meaning to get in touch. I am so sorry that things are in a rough patch right now. I think it sounds like you are definitely making the right steps towards saving your marriage and getting things back to where you both want things to be. Customizing those books sounds like such a good idea. I know Anthony would be doing the same ‘head shaking’ if I ever suggested that, but I hope Charlie does end up giving the books a chance, in order to give the two of you a chance. It is great that he at least sees that something needs to be done. I hope more arguments turn to talks and more hard days turn to good days in the near future. Big hugs to you! xxx

  6. You can get back there, I know it! The important thing is that you are both willing to do the work. If you are both fully invested then anything is possible from there. I think those books sound great and the counselor will be good too. I appreciate your honesty and openness in sharing your struggles. I think it’s really brave. I will be thinking about you both!

  7. mcmissis · · Reply

    I’m so excited to hear how all of them are! One way to maybe get him more on board with doing his part is either reading them together, like out loud, or just next to each other together. That way, you’ll be getting the goodness of him participating and he’ll be getting the goodness of staying in with you.

    P.S. I know reading out loud sounds crazy geeky, but I used to read books out loud to McMister (usually starting on a road trip so it wasn’t AS weird and then finishing at home), and he LOVED it. Mostly, they were novels, like da Vinci code or whatever, but on one trip, I read The Five Love Languages to him, and that went over well, too. We could stop and talk about stuff while on the same page (buh dum dum).

    1. Lol, you are funny, S 🙂

  8. I read the For Men Only book on my own (recommendation of Krista) and it was really helpful for me to read. Lots of good things about how differently the think and what they need and what vs what we need and want. Excellent choice.. hope it helps. Love you

  9. […] really bad spot. Honestly? It was at rock bottom. I wrote about it a little bit here and here and here. We got some great relationship books to read (which we honestly haven’t gotten all the way […]

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