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Are our wives 'the enemy'?
#11
(04-10-2018, 10:17 AM)Tamagoto Wrote: TBH I don't see a great gap between what me and Marwood said. Don't take things personally, do plan for the long term, do your best to get the outcome you think is best for the children, keep your children's best interests (not your own) front and centre, remember your ex is a person with her own reasons for believing what they are saying, and remember you will have to be on good terms with each other once all this finishes, because you'll be parents for life Smile

Oh and of course, don't get attached to the outcome. Because it might not go your way. Didn't go the way I wanted it to Wink

I get that now. Thanks. Smile

(04-10-2018, 11:41 AM)Cheese_head_1986 Wrote: Her interpretation of that night was that fatherhood wasn't for me and I abandon her and our daughter - that's what she believes and that's her version of the truth.

I'll quote this from Lost Highway the David Lynch film because it made me think of my ex's mindset:

"I like to remember things my own way."

"What do you mean by that?"

"How I remembered them. Not necessarily the way they happened."

The trouble is - aren't they all like that in this situation. It's what my wife seems to be doing. Then she asks me to accept her version like some barrister in Rumpole of the Bailey. It's a madhouse, isn't it. You go along year after year thinking there's some kind of logic to things and it turns out the nature of the human condition is it's a madhouse. The inside of your bubble isn't clear it's a reflective surface. It's something like what philosophers and mystics have always said but it's a bit rough when it turns up on your own doorstep.
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#12
(04-10-2018, 07:24 AM)marwood Wrote:
(04-10-2018, 06:06 AM)Tamagoto Wrote: They aren’t and they never have been. Having an attitude of conflict, whatever the reality of the situation on the ground will get none of us anywhere.

1) every story here, my own included, is one version of the truth.
2) it might feel nice to vent about our exes but actually venting in a confrontational way reinforces that behaviour and makes us hang on to the conflict. Better for everyone to practice letting go of it.
3) we never had any real power in our lives anyway. Nor did our exes. We can piss and moan about life being taken away from us if we like but it doesn’t do any good does it. Better to pick ourselves up, pick up a fellow father having a rough time and keep soldiering in. What else are we going to do?

This is true.  Having an attitude of conflict is not helpful on an interpersonal level.  Ultimately, you have to try to co-exist with this person.

However, during proceedings I viewed my ex as my opponent, in much the same way as I might view someone else I'm playing a game against. I planned out the court case as if it were a military campaign, and thought in terms of outflanking her, wearing her down through attrition, using the element of surprise against her etc.   I used to be an obsessive wargamer and I used things I learned from Carl Von Clausewitz's "On War", and Sun Tzu's "The Art Of War" against her.  

This was effective as she was constantly fighting individual battles (e.g. court hearings) whereas I had a whole campaign planned out.  The result was that by the time we'd got to final hearing, I was in a very strong position and got what I wanted, and she was still throwing silly arguments at me.

BUT - I still didn't view her as an enemy who I hated.  More like an acquaintance who I happen to be playing a very important game against.  I'll go all out to win, but it's not personal.

Even in a real war, eventually you have to make peace and co-exist with the other side.

"War is the continuation of politics by other means."

Regarding her crazy behaviour, accusations etc, I view them as I view the weather. If it's stormy outside, you wrap up warm and wear a coat to protect yourself.  However you don't get angry and shake your fist at the rain, because you know it won't do any good.

Marwood, simply because Im fascinated by this, can you explain more? tactics?

My ex comes from a family that believe power and control is desirable above all else. And I realise Ive invited a lot of this conflict by capitulating, to keep the peace and trying too hard. At the FHDRA I approached the ex in attempt to try an agreement. She walked off to get her solicitor and returned happier than I have ever seen her. She stated that "he's ready to agree" then proceeded to embarrass herself by making ridiculous demands and being completely uncompromising.

Anyway she honestly doesnt think Ill go through with it and is clearly not trying very hard, Im hoping it will be her undoing because I fully understand now.
In the inimitable words of Patrick Swayze: Project strength to avoid conflict, peace through superior firepower.
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#13
Can I chip in because I happen to be online. One thing I would think about is where is the opponent stronger than me. So you don't fight him there because he's going to beat you. If you have to you run away from a losing fight on his terms. Then you think: where might I have the edge on my opponent. And you use that.

From the account you've given us above I would gather that this family are used to winning. Power and dominance are important and they're used to getting their own way. In every fight they go in expecting to win and it makes them overconfident and maybe careless. There's their weakness and possibly your edge.

So you choose your ground and pick your moment and you catch them by surprise and beat them on something. Not only do you win but it erode's some of that over-confidence. Now you would expect that would make them more careful next time but my experience is that these people don't learn new tactics quickly.

You keep catching them by surprise. Don't let them have the morale-boost of winning in the same old way. That over-confidence will start to collapse and those sort don't have the inner resources to hold out when things aren't going their way. They start to fall apart and look for a way out.

There's a difference between 'strategy' and 'tactics'. Your strategy could be to use your enemy's confidence against him and long term erode it so he falls apart. Your tactics could be to pick your ground and your moment and keep catching him by surprise. The surprise is the simple fact that he hasn't won a particular point.

Give nothing away about the way you're thinking and keep moving. Don't let these people close to you or let them pick the ground and the moment.
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#14
Oh yeah it's crazy. It's like trying to kick water uphill!

Knowing that though, you're better prepared.

In my situation once the police case ended I didn't mention it again, but the ex kept bringing it back up to try and convince everyone that I was the one making everything up.

Eventually her solicitor, cafcass and the contact centre all told her that it's not relevant to the current proceedings but if she wants to do that then all the evidence and statements can be presented to court.

The family courts have a lower threshold on deciding if what allegedly happened, happened. I'm not sure of the exact wording they use but I think it's something like "probable likelihood"

Not enough evidence to criminally convict but enough for them to say "yeah that happened in all probable likelihood"

Keep focused on the matter in hand and let them trash talk because ultimately they don't have jack and that becomes clear in the end.

Family courts don't like their time being wasted and the more irrelevant stuff they bring up and the more child focused and chill you are just shows the contrast.

If the ex sees you as her enemy like mine does, that's her problem and they want to see you get frustrated and angry with them, because it shows them they still hold some power over you.

To slightly alter a quote )from revenge to approach) "the best approach is living well"
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#15
(04-10-2018, 11:58 AM)Naive Wrote:
(04-10-2018, 07:24 AM)marwood Wrote:
(04-10-2018, 06:06 AM)Tamagoto Wrote: They aren’t and they never have been. Having an attitude of conflict, whatever the reality of the situation on the ground will get none of us anywhere.

1) every story here, my own included, is one version of the truth.
2) it might feel nice to vent about our exes but actually venting in a confrontational way reinforces that behaviour and makes us hang on to the conflict. Better for everyone to practice letting go of it.
3) we never had any real power in our lives anyway. Nor did our exes. We can piss and moan about life being taken away from us if we like but it doesn’t do any good does it. Better to pick ourselves up, pick up a fellow father having a rough time and keep soldiering in. What else are we going to do?

This is true.  Having an attitude of conflict is not helpful on an interpersonal level.  Ultimately, you have to try to co-exist with this person.

However, during proceedings I viewed my ex as my opponent, in much the same way as I might view someone else I'm playing a game against. I planned out the court case as if it were a military campaign, and thought in terms of outflanking her, wearing her down through attrition, using the element of surprise against her etc.   I used to be an obsessive wargamer and I used things I learned from Carl Von Clausewitz's "On War", and Sun Tzu's "The Art Of War" against her.  

This was effective as she was constantly fighting individual battles (e.g. court hearings) whereas I had a whole campaign planned out.  The result was that by the time we'd got to final hearing, I was in a very strong position and got what I wanted, and she was still throwing silly arguments at me.

BUT - I still didn't view her as an enemy who I hated.  More like an acquaintance who I happen to be playing a very important game against.  I'll go all out to win, but it's not personal.

Even in a real war, eventually you have to make peace and co-exist with the other side.

"War is the continuation of politics by other means."

Regarding her crazy behaviour, accusations etc, I view them as I view the weather. If it's stormy outside, you wrap up warm and wear a coat to protect yourself.  However you don't get angry and shake your fist at the rain, because you know it won't do any good.

Marwood, simply because Im fascinated by this, can you explain more? tactics?

My ex comes from a family that believe power and control is desirable above all else. And I realise Ive invited a lot of this conflict by capitulating, to keep the peace and trying too hard. At the FHDRA I approached the ex in attempt to try an agreement. She walked off to get her solicitor and returned happier than I have ever seen her. She stated that "he's ready to agree" then proceeded to embarrass herself by making ridiculous demands and being completely uncompromising.

Anyway she honestly doesnt think Ill go through with it and is clearly not trying very hard, Im hoping it will be her undoing because I fully understand now.
In the inimitable words of Patrick Swayze: Project strength to avoid conflict, peace through superior firepower.

When your wife suddenly switches from pretending to have a lovely family home to character assassinating you to be some violent uncaring monster it does tend me to view her as the enemy, yes. 

The more scary part is how many people are actually taken in by it.
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#16
Mine did exactly that. It doesn’t help me to see her as the enemy. Better to think of her as the mother of my children and assume the best intentions.
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#17
(04-10-2018, 12:53 PM)beehive84 Wrote:
(04-10-2018, 11:58 AM)Naive Wrote:
(04-10-2018, 07:24 AM)marwood Wrote:
(04-10-2018, 06:06 AM)Tamagoto Wrote: They aren’t and they never have been. Having an attitude of conflict, whatever the reality of the situation on the ground will get none of us anywhere.

1) every story here, my own included, is one version of the truth.
2) it might feel nice to vent about our exes but actually venting in a confrontational way reinforces that behaviour and makes us hang on to the conflict. Better for everyone to practice letting go of it.
3) we never had any real power in our lives anyway. Nor did our exes. We can piss and moan about life being taken away from us if we like but it doesn’t do any good does it. Better to pick ourselves up, pick up a fellow father having a rough time and keep soldiering in. What else are we going to do?

This is true.  Having an attitude of conflict is not helpful on an interpersonal level.  Ultimately, you have to try to co-exist with this person.

However, during proceedings I viewed my ex as my opponent, in much the same way as I might view someone else I'm playing a game against. I planned out the court case as if it were a military campaign, and thought in terms of outflanking her, wearing her down through attrition, using the element of surprise against her etc.   I used to be an obsessive wargamer and I used things I learned from Carl Von Clausewitz's "On War", and Sun Tzu's "The Art Of War" against her.  

This was effective as she was constantly fighting individual battles (e.g. court hearings) whereas I had a whole campaign planned out.  The result was that by the time we'd got to final hearing, I was in a very strong position and got what I wanted, and she was still throwing silly arguments at me.

BUT - I still didn't view her as an enemy who I hated.  More like an acquaintance who I happen to be playing a very important game against.  I'll go all out to win, but it's not personal.

Even in a real war, eventually you have to make peace and co-exist with the other side.

"War is the continuation of politics by other means."

Regarding her crazy behaviour, accusations etc, I view them as I view the weather. If it's stormy outside, you wrap up warm and wear a coat to protect yourself.  However you don't get angry and shake your fist at the rain, because you know it won't do any good.

Marwood, simply because Im fascinated by this, can you explain more? tactics?

My ex comes from a family that believe power and control is desirable above all else. And I realise Ive invited a lot of this conflict by capitulating, to keep the peace and trying too hard. At the FHDRA I approached the ex in attempt to try an agreement. She walked off to get her solicitor and returned happier than I have ever seen her. She stated that "he's ready to agree" then proceeded to embarrass herself by making ridiculous demands and being completely uncompromising.

Anyway she honestly doesnt think Ill go through with it and is clearly not trying very hard, Im hoping it will be her undoing because I fully understand now.
In the inimitable words of Patrick Swayze: Project strength to avoid conflict, peace through superior firepower.

When your wife suddenly switches from pretending to have a lovely family home to character assassinating you to be some violent uncaring monster it does tend me to view her as the enemy, yes. 

The more scary part is how many people are actually taken in by it.

Thats exactly it, her pretence worked on the mediator and on CAFCASS, it works on all the friends and even the childminder, its always worked because society automatically assumes she is the main carer. But now we are walking into a court of law and she hasnt caught on yet.

Something happened about 6 years ago that broke both our hearts, its usually described as an "act of nature" or "Gods plan"
She has, most ridiculously, attempted to blame it on me. Whilst it confirms to me she is now the enemy, solicitor says ex is in big trouble trying to use something like that to score points.
The means justify the ends and clearly there are no rules of engagement.

(04-10-2018, 12:26 PM)Jim Wrote: Can I chip in because I happen to be online. One thing I would think about is where is the opponent stronger than me. So you don't fight him there because he's going to beat you. If you have to you run away from a losing fight on his terms. Then you think: where might I have the edge on my opponent. And you use that.  

From the account you've given us above I would gather that this family are used to winning. Power and dominance are important and they're used to getting their own way. In every fight they go in expecting to win and it makes them overconfident and maybe careless. There's their weakness and possibly your edge.

So you choose your ground and pick your moment and you catch them by surprise and beat them on something. Not only do you win but it erode's some of that over-confidence. Now you would expect that would make them more careful next time but my experience is that these people don't learn new tactics quickly.

You keep catching them by surprise. Don't let them have the morale-boost of winning in the same old way. That over-confidence will start to collapse and those sort don't have the inner resources to hold out when things aren't going their way. They start to fall apart and look for a way out.

There's a difference between 'strategy' and 'tactics'. Your strategy could be to use your enemy's confidence against him and long term erode it so he falls apart. Your tactics could be to pick your ground and your moment and keep catching him by surprise. The surprise is the simple fact that he hasn't won a particular point.

Give nothing away about the way you're thinking and keep moving. Don't let these people close to you or let them pick the ground and the moment.

Jim thats so true, exactly right. Yes the overconfidence is ridiculous. One of her favourite games was arguing and claiming she was more capable than the professionals she sought advice from, doctors to mortgage advisors. I should imagine she will fall out with her solicitor at some point, she doesnt like being told anything.
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