From Frog To Prince
By Empowered Wife Michelle
Like most little girls, I always thought I would meet, fall in love with, and marry my very own prince charming, so when I did marry at 21, I believed I had found my happily ever after. But it didn’t take very long for my fairytale to turn into a big, fat, over-ripe pumpkin.
After over twenty years of unhappily married life and five children, I was pretty much set on tossing my frog back into the pond, hoping to catch a prince. I told my husband to move out. We did try some marriage counseling, but I was ready to get the paperwork started for our imminent divorce. I looked for an attorney, but each office I called had one conflict or another and couldn’t take my case. I realized maybe it was a sign that I was being too hasty. But where else should I look for answers?
A friend of mine recommended I read the book The Surrendered Wife, by Laura Doyle. My immediate reaction to hearing the title was less-than-enthusiastic, but I gave it a shot anyway. To my surprise, nearly every page I read was like looking into a magic mirror full of my disrespectful, controlling, and complaint-filled behavior in my marriage. I never realized how much I had actually contributed to my unhappily-ever-after, and it was a bit of a shock. Maybe my Frog wasn’t as bad as I was making him out to be and truly was my prince.
Once I began implementing the intimacy skills outlined in the book and established a self-care routine, I started noticing some big changes. My Frog and I had been separated for about nine months, but after practicing the skills and re-learning how to communicate my needs, my Frog was moving back in! We had some bumps along the road, but overall it was such an amazing transformation when I finally began to see that the man I had married nearly 22 years before was not a frog at all, but had remained my prince charming. I was just too busy being in control and micromanaging him that I didn’t see I was the one who had changed into something unpleasant, not him.
One of my greatest joys that came with practicing and implementing the intimacy skills was seeing my Prince be an amazing father to our children. Before surrendering, when I was so busy trying to have everything done my way, I never gave my prince the chance to be the dad he wanted to be. But when I let go of my fear, he had the opportunity to stand up and be great for our kids. I now can sit back and watch him parent with admiration and support at what a great dad he is.
For too many years I suffered in a marriage that was more nightmare than fairytale, not knowing if I would ever find my happily-ever-after, but after practicing the intimacy skills and principals, I am the princess who lives in a cherished, peaceful, and loving relationship with her prince.
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8 replies on “From Frog To Prince”
I have found that when I read Laura’s book things are much better at home with no fights because I just keep quiet. However, it gets really old to always have to be the submissive and take the “high road”. I look on the bright side of all the things he does and he is a good husband. I am alone most of the time, we seldom speak, he doesn’t like to talk and gets irritated when I try. So I just do the self care. I mind my own business. I can tell you I have no desire for sex with someone I am not connected with.
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LauraDoyleConnect Team Member
It was nice to read your success story with SW. I, too, was separated…but for 2 years in 2005. I practiced SW and through the techniques I learned, my husband and I found our way back to each other. Things had definetely improved in our marriage (now 35yrs) but lately, I’m feeling like things are going back to the way they were. We argue alot, sometimes I feel like we aren’t even speaking the same language! I know I should pick up my book again and start from the beginning. Maybe your story will be the inspiration I need to get out of this funk. Thanks so much for sharing.
It is great to hear that The Surrendered Wife has helped you in the past with your marriage! Relationships go through changes from time to time but practicing the six intimacy skills remains universally important. It is a lifelong process that can give you inspiration and guidance through those changes and create intimacy and peace in your marriage.
LauraDoyleConnect Team Member
Ive been practicing SW techniques and they’re been incredibly helpful.. But, sometimes I get a little stuck on what to say and what not to say. For example, right now my husband is unemployed and is looking for a job. We have two young kids, and his unemployment is a definite stress for me. Today, my husband mentioned that he was feeling burdened by his previous business partner who wanted him to take care of certain things. This made me nervous and uncomfortable that if he doesnt want to do certain things for his business partner, then why would this partner want to engage him in future business ventures? I didnt say anything but was super sad and worried after. Is this something that I can talk to him about or is this one of those “Whatever you think, dear” moments?
I would like to acknowledge you for your courage and openness regarding your marriage. It is natural to get stuck from time to time, after all, no one is perfect. I can understand and relate to you, as I am sure many other women will.
I have a husband that is unemployed and is applying for disability. His self confidence is lacking. Personally I believe he is able to work at least part time, and it’s so difficult to keep from pushing him to try to work. Will these techniques work in this situation? Financially, we really need him to work some. It’s hard to admire a man that’s not working and acts like he’s a senior citizen and he’s 57. He’s negative and moody and I have to leave a lot to keep from reacting to his moods with anger. Every now and then I get a glimpse of the man I married. I hope I didn’t create this situation by being controlling, but I’m willing to try anything to turn it around.
Carol, I’ve sure seen surrendering work miracles in situations like yours. Pushing him to work will definitely backfire, but letting him know you respect him and expect the best and expressing your desires in a way that inspires can make a huge difference in how he responds to you.