If a partner is missing out on Valentine’s day, he is missing out on one of the most romantic days and moments for potential intimacy. Forgetting the holiday is often a recurring pattern, so I suggests combating that by encouraging wives and girlfriends to take the initiative. Remind him about the Valentine’s Day, go shopping with him for it, and get him excited about the celebration. To seize the moment, use Dr. Bonnie’s Smart Heart tips from her book “Make Up, Don’t Break Up: Finding and Keeping Love for Singles and Couples ” and accompanying video “How to Fall in Love and Stay in Love for Singles and Couples.” Since Valentine’s Day can be used to measure the temperature of a relationship, more often than not, men forgetting Valentine’s Day is a sign of something more. These warning signs can be signs of adultery or the ripening of a relationship for an affair, so heed the warning. Men are not in touch with their feelings and typically hold in these feelings. Men need to be guided as they don’t always know how to feel or what they feel. Most men are “connectable by instruction.” To quote Dr. Jeff Weil, Dr. Bonnie’s husband, “If I knew what I felt, I would tell you, so I welcome your help.” SmartHeart dialogue was born by dialoguing to help Jeff understand what he was feeling and be able to express it. SmartHeart dialogue helps them dig deep with small doses of communication and results in an endorphin high with “play” after the talks.

Beyond forgetting Valentine’s year after year, some other signs that he may be secretly harboring a grudge include,: excusing his behavior, minimizing the holiday, putting down his partner for wanting to celebrate, makes fun of the holiday, acting like a Scrooge, pushing partner away, turned off when affection is initiated by the other, leaves early in the day, comes home late, is argumentative, is not talkative around you but is with others, little or no intimacy with partner, “too tired” or uses work to distance themselves, shuts down when approached, stonewalls with silence, denies anything is wrong, does not want to discuss the grudge, or gets moody when asked about it.

To grudge bust,: do not say yes when mean no, watch out for delayed reactions that cause resentment later, stand your ground, don’t cave even if it’s easier, “act as if” even if you don’t “feel” the good feelings, do not do “peace at any price” it leads to war, write letter representing partner’s apology for hurt caused and show your partner the feelings.

When one or both of you are holding a grudge, part of the reason is because you didn’t and still don’t feel safe enough to tell your partner what you need and stand your ground. In order to be able to do this, you need to restore safety to the relationship. The following ground rules should be closely adhered to so that you both feel safe enough to begin dissolving the grudges.

Smart Heart Ground Rules to Increase Safety for Dissolving Grudges:

  • Stop beating yourself up; forgive yourself.
  • Stop beating up your partner; forgive him or her.
  • See each other as wounded children.
  • Take and give space without guilt or manipulation.
  • Disconnect and reconnect with announcement, preparation, and tenderness.
  • Don’t punish or shame.
  • Remember that it will take a while to get your feelings back; that doesn’t mean the love is gone.
  • When you’re dealing with your partner’s hurt, you are healing your own as well.
  • Use attachment skills and have sex even if you don’t “feel like it.”
  • Doing it will make you feel like it and help you to knock down barriers the grudges have built.
  • Check in daily to see how your partner is doing and how you can help.

Once safety is restored in the relationship—or is on its way to being restored—it’s time to begin dissolving the grudges. Take on only one grudge at a time. If you are both holding grudges, take turns, so that you can both feel good about the progress that is being made. It’s important to work as a team on each grudge, no matter who’s holding it, or for what reason.

We want to help you prevent cheating in your relationship this holiday season, get our FREE online resource!

Here is to finding and keeping real love!

 

 

Dr. Bonnie Eaker Weil, Ph.D. – Love and Relationship Therapist, Mentor & Coach

Best-selling author of:

Make Up, Don’t Break Up: Finding and Keeping Love for Singles and Couples

Adultery: The Forgivable Sin

Financial Infidelity; The #1 Relationship Wrecker

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