TURNING DREAMS INTO REALITY

HERBERT PRINCE MTOWO

By Herbert Mtowo

A few months ago I set and spoke to one of my precious childhood friend In Pretoria, Gibson by name. As he narrated to me, saying,” You have always had a passion in Writing,”, back then I was involved in Sunday school and Youths drama acting at church, poetry and etc related.  What a friend and brother you are to me, its been along walk you know what I have gone through. But today I look back and say waal, thank God that I just didn’t keep dreaming but turned my dreaming into action, am sitting at the verge of something big unfolding. God has given me precious friends and lovely wonderful people. Dreaming and thinking about achieving big things is inspiring. But such positive thinking is effective only when you take an action. You might have all the knowledge in the world to do a particular thing but what is the use of that knowledge unless you act upon it?

After all, knowledge and skills can remain only pieces of information stored in your mind if you sit idle and do not utilize them to achieve your goal. Simply having knowledge and good thoughts will not take you anywhere. So in order to achieve your desired results and experience the personal development you would like to see in yourself, you have to combine knowledge with the necessary action. I recently have had a wonderful discussion and talk with Sylvia-In U.S.A, and how amazing God connects me to people of like passions. These around me are people who aren’t just dreaming but acting big, you have a big heart Sylvia and its good to have people like you dwarfing my dreams hey..

Self help is – best fuel for growth

Of course, you need to have the vision in your mind regarding where you want to see yourself in the future. But all those thoughts and vision require conscious action from your side to turn your dreams into reality. Remember even the most successful people would not have reached their milestones without taking action. Many of us avoid taking the initiative because of fear of losing. But keep in mind that the ultimate failure is not losing. Rather failure is the malady of not trying at all. So take action no matter how small it is. You will be amazed to see that even the smallest of self help actions can have an impact. The idea is to keep moving forward.

Choosing the more difficult option

For instance, you may aspire to take a business management course to give shape to your dream of becoming a successful business manager but are petrified of math. One option is to simply give up your dream and opt for another career. That is definitely the easy way out. The other option is to think positive, fight your fear of math, practice hard to upgrade your skills and get the help that you need.

The first and easier option will push you towards another career; while the second, more difficult option will help you build your dream career. Which one would you value more? To be stuck in a career you didn’t want … or to feel good about building the career of your dreams? No matter what your goal is, be it to launch your own company, become a fashion designer, a ballet dancer or finish your PhD … you have to keep taking consistent action towards your goal. Once you take the first step, it will be far easier for you to take the next step. But if you do nothing at all, nothing will be your result.

Be ready for the big leap

The success secret of all successful people is that they don’t just talk or visualize. They take action. When the going gets tough, they take small but steady steps … and when opportunity knocks, they are prepared to take the big jump. The key to success lies in consistently trying without quitting. It is not a stroke of luck that brings success. It is the combination of vision with the required action … one step at a time. And don’t lose heart when you start anything new. Always remember most beginnings are small and seem insignificant, but as you take each step toward your goal you become closer to achieving it.

It is extremely difficult in the beginning, so you need to push yourself and keep yourself motivated. Read inspiring self help books, encouraging quotes and watch inspirational sayings videos that offer ways to improve personal development and give you the necessary push to take action.We all dream,but the difference is in those who turn their dreams into action,than to keep dream and not acting upon your dreams.

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WOUNDS FROM OUR PAST.

HERBERT MTOWO

By J Ibaroza

We were hurt and we indirectly inflict the pain on people around us. Even the best amongst us have old wounds to heal. It is impossible to go through life without being emotionally wounded, and deliberately or not, inflict such wounds to the people we love as well. We all are a being of hidden pains, scarred spirits, and disillusionment. Some are abused as a child- physically and emotionally. Others got their wounds from friends- and on certain occasions, via circumstances.

Pain masked by life’s aging process is all a common terrain. Like the palm of our hand, we are all too familiar with it. Yes, we learn to manage our pain. We became good at hiding our feelings. But old wounds resurfacing can deliver more harm than we may acknowledge for it can be expressed indirectly. An abusive parent is the kind of parent who suffers abuse in childhood, and though they love their children, the early trauma they had in life indirectly manifest in their child rearing ability. They became the reflection of their abusive parents without clearly being aware of it.

The jealous, over-possessive partner has the problems root cause (and not coming into terms) with the lack of love and nurturing that they should had received in childhood. The bully personality can be the most insecure of all for they hide life’s shortcomings under the cloak of false strength and virtue and obscuring the world for what they really are- a person with less confidence. The boss from hell has some issues of old wounds to get over with.

Grief, resentment, guilt, anger, bitterness, sarcasm. We insensitively make biting comments without caring for the impact they have on other people. We were hurt and we indirectly inflict the pain on people around us thus proving that past hidden pain (may) still makes a dent to the present life we were living. We may had gone through the healing process and acknowledge the emotional scar it leaves.

And healing was never an instant process. It is not an overnight process. It does allow us enough time to be aware of the issue and reassess how much of the wound is expressed in an indirect way. It delivers the idea of how much we want to live life with joy. We cannot rewrite the past, but we can make a better chart of our future. Without nurturing the pain, old wounds do heal with time. There will be scars- only to be a bitter reminder of the past and should inspire us to strive on becoming a better person.

Life is never meant to be perfect and a deep old wounds nemesis is forgiveness. Forgive yourself, forgive the people that inflict pain on you, and thoroughly forgive the past. Life is all about moving forward and not the other way around. Learn from the past and not live on it.

 

TRUE LOVE –FINAL PART.

Herbert P Mtowo

BY HERBERT MTOWO

Walls have openings.

Loneliness is a very painful thing. So eventually, we all come to a place where we cannot hide any more. The walls are great, but you must let someone in if you want to be loved. So as you grew from a tiny baby and became more aware of others, you began to make some changes to your walls.

It might have taken a while for you to know whom you could trust. But as soon as you found someone who you knew would not harm you, your walls started to come down. You learned how to create doorways in those walls. Doorways that you kept closed and opened only to those whom you could trust. Now you began to develop a love experience that was conditional. No longer did you love freely as you started out doing. But you found that you could make a choice. You could open your heart to some people, and you closed your heart to others. After a period of time, you became aware of brother and sisters, or of other children like yourself. You wanted them to accept you, so you opened your heart to them. And if your mother was kind and caring, and you had not built up many walls, you probably were too open and trusting.

It takes only a few painful experiences to know whom you can trust. Then your walls become fixed in place, and you choose which doors you will open. It all sounds complicated now as you think with an adult mind. But as a child it was simple really. If you had few bad experiences, then you probably trusted everyone, and only put up walls to those who hurt you. But as you began to grow and experience more about life in this world, it probably grew worse. You probably found that in the end you put up walls to everybody, and you only opened the doors to those who did NOT hurt you. This is often how most of us grow up, with little trust for others

The Rooms of the House

Time is a wonderful classroom, and experience brings knowledge. As you continued to grow and mature, your choices started to become better defined. No longer were there simply those whom you could love and those whom you could not love. Now amongst those whom you allowed through the walls, you saw some that you loved more than others. As a baby, your whole world was built around your mother. Then you noticed someone who was a kind of ‘assistant mother’. You eventually discovered that you also had a father.

Next came brothers and sisters, and after that followed relatives and family friends. The circle continued to widen more and more, until you had formed a circle of people whom you knew fairly well. As time progressed this circle began to expand as more and more people were added to it. And eventually you had a lot of people whom you allowed to have an open door into your life. But they were not all equal. Some of these, you trusted more and loved more. Others you kept a little distance from you, because you did not know them in the same way. Your experiences caused you to form several circles within that inner circle, made up of those whom you trusted and whom you were prepared to trust with your heart.

Not only was your love unconditional, but it also became inconsistent. You could not love everyone in the same way. So you began to form some extra walls within the outer walls of your house. You built different rooms in your house and you decided who would be allowed into each room.

In a normal house, there are many different kinds of room. There are rooms into which most visitors have free access, like the living room. Some might be more restricted, like the kitchen and bathroom. Others are given limited access, like the study and the bedroom. Some like the basement or attic, might never be shown to most visitors. You built the house of your life just like this. You formed places in your heart that were reserved for special people and special occasions. You began to form levels of friendship and different kinds of love for each level. Once again, what started out really simple became complicated.

The One Special Room

There is a unique and special room in the heart of each one of us that most people are not even aware of. It is a room that remains locked for most of your life, and you protect it jealously until the time is right. Then when you finally open that door, it opens to allow only one person in. After that it is kept securely locked again, allowing only one special person through its door.

I would like to call this special room by a name that you will remember and understand. As you think about this, you will soon agree that such a room does exist in your heart. When you see this, some things will suddenly begin to make a lot of sense to you. You will understand right away what has prevented you from loving your husband or wife like you should. This room is called First Love’. Its door was unlocked and opened wide for the first time, when you first experienced what we have come to call, ‘falling in love.’ And when you opened it, you swung it wide for the very first person in this world that you trusted fully, since you were born. It is very important that you understand how this works, because in most cases, the person whom you first allow into that room does not remain there. When you fall in love for the first time, you are usually too immature to realize what is involved. And although you really want the person whom you invited into that room to move in and stay, this does not usually take place.

Probably, one of the most painful love experiences that a person can ever have takes place when First Love fails. And when this happened to you, then you probably locked that door once more. You probably vowed that nobody else would ever walk through that door again. You held onto the key, in the hope that perhaps one day the person who really belonged there would return. Some have since found wonderful, refreshing lovely experiences, most of our first so call first love were just kids play, because we didn’t know jack what this love is all about.

LIFE SURE GOES ON

I am sure that you know exactly what I am talking about. You shut that door and tried to go on living without ever entering that room again. You probably continued to add further rooms to your house, and over time, your choices became very clear. May I say this to you members of Jordan Touch Communications that it was your first love and it failed doesn’t mean it was the end of the world? I can still say today love is a wonderful thing and a great experience, but we bottle up most of the times on what could have been. What we lost most of us, was wish washy love, as we began to get out of the shell we felt the longing to love and to be loved. But hear me and hear me very well, take it from me.

Love is a wonderful thing but don’t go hunting for it, it sure will come your way. Some are hurting, some are regretting, but wait a while; you will love again, and love for real. LOVE IS SUCH A WONDERFUL EXPERIENCE, DON’T DESPAIR..

 

TRUE LOVE: PART ONE

( By Herbert Mtowo)

JORDAN AND ROBERTTA

If I were to ask you to define true love, you would probably not find this an easy thing to do. Love means many things to different people. Perhaps that is why we have made it so complicated. And as I always say, we have to find a simple way in order to be happy.

I am sure that by now, after trying to understand my ‘simple’ principles that I teach, you are finding it not so simple. You have probably found that showing love, affection and being in harmony are not so simple after all. Yet they should be if that is what God said we should do. So perhaps the real problem is that we keep complicating the things that God designed to be simple. Like love for example. I want to try and help you in this topic to realize how easy love really is. And when you see how easy it is, you will probably say, “Wow, I wish I knew that before.”

To help you understand love better, I am going to take you through some memories of the past. I want you to understand how you developed such a wrong idea of what love really is and how love affects each part of you. When we are finished, I think that you will find some love starting to appear that you did not know was there. . Then you will learn a little bit about yourself, get ready for this two part series.

A Life Without Walls, what an experience
You and me began our lives in a very safe and secure place; deep in our mother‘s wombs. We were as close to another human being as a person can ever get. AS part of our mothers, we shared her body, her soul and her spirit. The two of us could not be separated. So we felt it when her body moved, we felt it when her soul was touched, and we also shared in her spiritual experiences. While we were in the womb, you were protected from all outside influences and every need we had was met instantly through the mother. And although we were a separate person to her, we felt like we were part of her.

But then there came a time when suddenly all of this ended. You were pushed out into a new world that did not exist before. A world where there were no more walls of protection. A world where love does not always exist, where hurt and pain can affect you. Now instead of your needs being taken care of automatically, you found that you had to cry out for them to be fulfilled. And the more you cried, the more your needs were met. You soon found out that love was something that was not given freely.

The Walls Going Up

Now for most of us, our mother was probably a normal woman who cared for her little baby. But even the most loving mother finds it hard sometimes to be patient and caring. The demands of life, and the added responsibility of a little baby can cause a mother to not always give unconditional love.

Add to this also the other people who come into the picture. If the birth took place in a hospital the you were probably handled by nursing staff and doctors who were not always loving. They might have hurt you in order to help you, by pricking your body to take blood samples, and pushing pipes into your mouth and nose to remove excess fluid etc. I am sure that you do not remember any of these things. But from the moment you were born, you found that you were unprotected from hurt and pain. So you began to slowly build up some walls around you to protect yourself.

Then, as the walls began to grow, you started to feel a bit more like you did in the womb. You rested, knowing that if harm would come, you were ready for it. But what you did not realize was that you were not only protecting yourself from harm. You were also slowly putting up a barrier that would block out everything. And that barrier also began to block the love that your mother and others around you were trying to give you.

……To be Continued

Lovemaking, sexuality and foreplay.

Making love is A Skill to be mastered.

Herbert Mtowo

I always say to my fellow men that, “The body of a woman is like a musical instrument, it produces sound when picked up to be played.”The quality of the music is not determined by the instrument, but by the player himself. Most men are annoyed by the sound produced by the music not knowing that they determine the music coming out not the instrument. The instrument is just flowing with the way it is played. I have never played a guitar in my life, but if you ask me to play it, it will produce music and sound. But if you get a professional guitar player, you will hear that the sound and quality of music is different. May I put this forward to all men and women, Sex is an art which we are not born knowing. But we have to improve and work on it, to be skilful players so that the quality of music and sound is of great quality and standards.
What type of music are you producing through the instrument, body of the woman in your life, don’t jump to bed with every woman looking for better quality of music, you can make and produce the most beautiful music through that instrument(body),when you master the art of playing and improving your skill, that can be sweet to your ears and your partners Life is very stressful. There are so many things to do, and so little time in which to do them. So when it comes to love making, usually your time is limited. After a full day’s work and perhaps a full evening of responsibilities at home, you are weary.

When you go to bed, your desire for sex is there, but it is getting late. You must get some sleep or you will not be able to wake up in the morning. So what do you do? You rush through your love making and go to sleep. Men are the guiltiest of this. If you are a workaholic then you tend to rush through anything that is not work. So you scoff down your food at meal times and rush back to work. And you rush through your time of love making in the same way. Now as a man you might be able to cope with this. And you probably still enjoy the sex. It does not usually take a man long to reach orgasm. The sight of his naked wife gets his hormones raging, and if he is young and full of energy a few quick strokes will get him there. He falls back satisfied and drifts off to sleep, while his wife lies unfulfilled and frustrated. He did not bother to take the time to consider her feelings or to satisfy her desires. He thinks that he is a good husband, and he probably is a good provider. But he is a fool. He has not only denied his wife the opportunity to enjoy love making, but he has settled for less than he could have had. There seems to be a common idea that most men are crazy about sex and most women are not. This is largely because many women have never been given the chance to enjoy the sexual experience. The truth of the matter is that women are equipped to have a far greater sexual experience than men. A man, once he has reached a climax, cannot continue to enjoy the experience. He would have to wait and start all over again, if he is really energetic. But a woman can have several orgasms one after the other and continue to enjoy the experience even after reaching a climax.

So what is the best way to get the most out of your time of love making? Surely it is for the man to hold back until his wife has reached the same place of arousal as him. And then if he is really considerate, he will encourage her to reach orgasm first, if she desires to do so. For most men this is a difficult thing. When you begin to ‘climb the mountain’ you come to a point where it is all downhill. Once it starts you cannot stop it, and when it is over you cannot start it again. How do you overcome this problem? By the simple use of foreplay. This means bringing your wife to arousal before you complete the sexual act. How is this carried out? Many books have been written on this, and they all major on the physical side You get them in your email box daily. Those advertisements that promise you the best sexual experience you have ever had. For the man an enlargement of his genitals. For the woman an increased sensation to heighten pleasure.

Are there that many impotent and frigid people out there to justify all this of this hype that is made about the sexual experience? Or is this just another way to make people spend their hard earned money? There certainly are those who are unable to enjoy a normal sexual experience because of a physical malfunction, and where such a problem exists, and a doctor prescribes medication to correct this problem, such medication might be advisable. But for the vast majority of us, the truth of the matter is that we are not enjoying the sexual experience the way we should, and we are seeking some way of heightening it.
I teach on some powerful concepts on how to approach your love making to ensure that you obtain the most from the experience. You will find that if you develop your marriage relationship God’s way, then your love making experience will be wonderful, and the idea of taking some pill or cream to make it better will seem ridiculous. Most men need to know how to eat healthy than spend time on aphrodisiac boosters, good food, can improve your sexual performance as a men. Most men need to cut on their fat, sugar, oil, salt and other junk food intake. There is nothing that is a scary as being with a woman who is not getting enough or satisfied because the men is not doing a good job in bed.
You will find that sex is actually a spiritual experience, and the Holy Spirit will gladly become part of this, as you invite Him into your relationship. Sad to say there a millions of women and men who have not had or experienced quality sexual experience, in their lifetime. One of the major cause for divorce rates is infidelity. Why? I can simply put it that we have kept sex a taboo, topic to our detrimental.

FEELINGS AND STABILIZING OUR EMOTIONS

Herbert Prince Mtowo

My life reads like a never ending novel, so much to look back, so much to thank God for, so many loses, so much rejection, lots of pain and so much to weep about and so much to look up to God and be grateful. It`s sad its mostly thought of to be weak when a man sheds tears of pain, loss and regrets, because we have too many fake masculinity, though inside they are shattered and hopeless. Emotions love to control our actions and reactions, even though we do not want them to dominate us. Society often sees emotions as a sign of weakness so people are used to setting their feelings aside to become more rational. You will always have to deal with feelings no matter how logical and rational you become. I don’t know about you but i know what it is to be hurt and have nobody to turn to but God.

One of the vital facts in regards to emotions in contemporary society is the fact that even though we desire one another to live by reason we still must use our emotions as a healthy gauge for a total sense of well being. One of the vital facts in regards to emotions in contemporary society is the fact that even though we desire one another to live by reason we still must use our emotions as a healthy gauge for a total sense of well being. I know what it is to have my emotions really hit me hard and my nights turned into sorrow, the loss of loved ones, the loss of  what I dearly loved and being scandalized and not sure what the future holds, bring out emotional insatiability that one never thought existed in their human body.

Our emotions permit us to communicate with our humanness like no other sense that we enjoy. We laugh, cry, experience anger, and all of the other emotional feelings we use on an every day basis. In my personal experience as a counselor I have heard and come across some really difficult situations, and even in my own life, but one thing I have concluded, it remains God`s number one priority to heal wounded hearts. Some of my writings I have penned them when the future looked bleak not knowing what shall become of Herbert, and just a flicker of hope remaining and hoping another day will bring a ray of light. I know what it is to have loved ones snuffed away from my world painfully and think and hope it was just a dream. Writing is a way of communicating to the outside world, a way of bringing healing to many, and why most of you enjoy my writings is mainly because they are based on real life issues, and my life has been broken down into a million pieces and at times I have wondered how will God ever repair this fragmented and crushed, broken and wounded heart. My word to you is we all are hurting one way or the other, all we need is to allow God to take us through the process of healing which may take a very long time, but we must allow God to do it at His own pace and not ours.

The point is if we listen to society and try to disengage ourselves from our feelings we are in more danger than if we live by our feelings. The latter gives us an up and down yo-yo type life style, but on the other hand to disregard our feelings is disastrous. Our emotions permit us to communicate with our humanness like no other sense that we enjoy. We laugh, cry, experience anger, and all of the other emotional feelings we use on an every day basis. One will never enjoy life by avoiding his or her feelings. The Creator has given these wonderful feelings for a reason. Just because they get damaged in life is no reason to throw the baby out with the bath water, so to speak. What is needed is to get healing where our emotions have been damaged and learn to feel all that there is to feel in life. Using all of our senses to live is real living. There is great benefit in striving to live a balanced life, rather than be on the extreme in one direction or the other. Neither will lead to a total healthy life style.

In the allopathic and western medicine world they have lost touch with the basic concept of true healing. They substitute a band-aid for a cure and do you wonder why they don’t feel better. People get ill for many reasons. Each diseased state is telling us that we are ignoring some part of self and change is necessary. While many factors contribute to healing and it happens on many levels, all require attention throughout the entire healing practice. Ignoring the mental, emotional or spiritual bodies would not provide adequate and long-term good health.

Emotions are the foundation on which we build our life. They inspire and they limit us. Joy, bliss and happiness along with anger, fear confusion and unworthiness make us a whole person. Anger is often the impetus of motivation to accomplish goals while fear has the exact opposite effect. Confusion on the other hand, keeps whiling thoughts spinning causing a cloud of chaos. Happiness and joy are contagious and elevate everything we do. But why is it that joy is often the least experienced while fear, anger, confusion and unworthiness dominate? Happiness is indeed, dependent on our total well being. Therefore, take a hard look at your emotional well being to see how you add up. If you are not sure ask someone who knows you. They may see your life a lot clearer than you do.

At times we may even need to talk with a counselor. Seeing a professional is not a sign of weakness. Actually, it is a sign of strength. I urge you all in times of breaking point seek help, turn to God always but you need also other people to stabilize your life. I believe we don’t have to sit and mourn, regret and wish forever, buckle up, dust yourself up and get on with your life. Be a champion of your future.

Cutting your Spouse`s Apron strings.

HERBERT MTOWO

  • Is your spouse too dependent on his or her parents? Are your in-laws too involved in your marital life? If so, here’s help.

    by Sandra Lundberg

    Julie, you’ll never believe it!” exclaimed Susan. “Tom wants his parents to come live with us!”

    “Whoa, Susan,” Julie replied. “Slow down. Tell me what exactly is going on here. What did Tom say?”

    Susan took a deep breath. “Well, the other night we were talking about our finances, and the kids, and how things are really tight right now. He thought it would be a good idea for his parents to move in with us to share some of the expenses. Maybe we could even charge them rent, or the kids could stay with them instead of going to day care. Julie, I just can’t believe it!”

    Julie wondered why Susan was so upset. After all, having extended families live together wasn’t exactly a new idea. “In Bible days, multiple generations lived together all the time,” Julie said. “Just because we don’t usually do it here, I don’t quite understand why you’re so freaked out.”

    The resentment in Susan’s voice was clear. “Well, it would be just one more way for his mom and dad to try to influence our decisions.”

    “Oh! The issue is about boundaries and leaving and cleaving.”

    “Oh, yeah,” Susan said with sarcasm. “We have a real problem with the ‘leave and cleave’ thing.”

    Susan and Tom aren’t the only couple to have a problem in this area. Genesis 2:24 says, “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.” The King James Version calls being united “cleaving.” This refers to God‘s invention of a unique bond between husband and wife that’s not to be compromised by their relationship with their parents.

    Does this mean that we cut ourselves off from our families of origin? Not if they’re reasonably healthy. Maintaining relationships with our parents usually is beneficial. But problems arise if factors like the following are present:

    • One spouse relies too heavily on the parents to help in decision-making, leading the other spouse to feel insignificant.
    • One spouse looks to the parent, not the partner, to get his or her emotional needs met, leading the partner to feel ignored.
    • One spouse reveals details of marital conflict with his or her parents, leading the other spouse to feel betrayed.

    Let’s take a closer look at these and what you can do about them.

    1. Decision-making dysfunction. Couples need the freedom and autonomy to make their own decisions. Some parents are better than others in this area; many wait for their adult children to ask for advice, but others try to inject unsolicited wisdom. The latter are often deeply caring people who want the best for their children, but their behavior communicates a lack of respect and trust in the judgment of their child and his or her spouse.

      Family history can make this difficult water to navigate. Some spouses are used to asking their parents for direction; others make decisions more independently. If you and your mate have different habits on this score, conflict may result.

      If you’re frustrated because your spouse consults with his or her parents on decisions more than you’d like, the two of you need to work through this issue. If you feel threatened by your spouse’s behavior, share that diplomatically but honestly. Talk about how the two of you would like decision making to work. Would you prefer that the two of you make choices without getting input from either set of parents? Are there some decisions you’d ask one set of parents about, but not the other?

      Be aware that asking for parents’ advice can be a slippery slope. It may leave them feeling the door is open for them to give you input into other areas, or even to “correct” decisions you’ve already made.

      Credit each other and your in-laws with goodwill toward your marriage unless they’ve demonstrated otherwise. Sadly, some in-laws don’t seem to have a vested interest in the success of their child’s marriage. If this is true of you, you and your mate may want to recommit yourselves to “leaving and cleaving.” You may also need to seek professional advice to determine how best to establish and maintain appropriate boundaries with your in-laws.

    2. Emotional apron strings. If your spouse gets his or her emotional needs met in his or her relationship with parents instead of with you, there’s a problem. You may even feel as if your spouse is having an affair.

      Sometimes this problem begins when a wife feels frustrated over her husband’s seeming lack of interest in conversing about her day; she starts talking with her parents instead. Sometimes the husband is the frustrated one; it’s common for mother and son to have long or frequent conversations that leave the wife feeling ignored. Neither scenario is appropriate.

      Respect for each other is the key. In this situation, respect might require that the spouse maintaining an overly close relationship with his or her parents will decrease that contact in order to show love for the spouse. For example, a son whose mother is too close might say, “Mom, let’s limit our conversations to once a week about general things.” Or he may simply make the change himself, explaining it only if his mother asks him about it. In either case he would do well to save discussions of his goals and disappointments for times with his wife; these are the things that build intimacy in a marriage.

      This is not to suggest that children and parents should cut off their relationship under the guise of leaving and cleaving. But your primary human relationship now is with your spouse, not your parents. Your commitment to God comes first; then your bond to your spouse, then to any children you might have, then to your family of origin, and then to extended family and friends.

    3. Betrayal. It’s a common story: After a fight with his or her mate, a spouse goes “home to mother” or calls the parents on the phone and spills the details.

      This is detrimental to a marriage. It communicates disrespect to your spouse and makes it hard for the parents to maintain a healthy relationship with him or her.

      Even if you and your spouse reconcile within hours or days after your argument, family members may not know that. They might carry that memory of the fight you had, have a hard time believing that everything is okay, and remain suspicious of your partner.

      Expecting parents to referee your conflicts isn’t realistic or wise. It would be hard for them to be objective about your marriage. The best thing they can do when you come to them in the midst of an argument is to send you home to work it out.

      One exception would be conflict that involves violence. Getting to safety is the first priority. Taking time to be apart and see your parents can give you an opportunity to think and establish a plan to repair the marriage. It’s not helpful to just go home to Mom and Dad to vent, however.

    If you have an “apron strings” problem in your marriage, keep the following tips in mind as you talk with your spouse about it.

    1. Pray for wisdom and insight about what to say and how to say it.
    2. Tread lightly when it comes to criticizing your in-laws. Your spouse knows more negative things about his or her parents than you do, whether or not they’re expressed. Even repeating a complaint your spouse has made about his or her parents could be taken as an offense by your mate.
    3. Approach your spouse when you’re both rested, fed, and healthy. Right before falling asleep at night is not a good time to have this conversation.
    4. Remember that you’re a team. Because you’re committed to each other, you can work through this even if you don’t agree on the details — like your in-laws’ intent, how to best meet your spouse’s needs, or exact limits to place on parent-child conversations.
    5. If parents need to be confronted or informed, agree that their own child — not the son- or daughter-in-law — will do the talking. Protecting your marriage is a priority; the newest addition to the family doesn’t need another reason to be dissected by in-laws. Each spouse needs to know that he or she will be protected by the other, even if husband and wife disagree and the in-laws are meddlesome.

    If, after following these steps, you and your spouse are at an impasse about your in-laws, get the objective input of a therapist.

    Leaving and cleaving is tricky, but doable. The love and respect you communicate to each other when you value your marriage over your relationship with your parents are essential.

    After Susan and Julie talked, Susan realized why she felt threatened by the idea of her in-laws moving into her home. It was because she believed her mother-in-law wanted more contact with Tom than Susan was comfortable with.

    As Susan and Tom talked about it, she became less defensive. Tom was able to listen more easily and understand her heart. In turn, his own heart softened. He began to evaluate how much time he spent with his mom — and what he could do about those apron strings.

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THE UGLINESS OF BETRAYAL

Most people have heard of Judas.  His main claim to fame is that he was the guy who betrayed Jesus Christ.  With a brotherly smooch (of all things), he ratted out his friend and mentor.  But long before this notorious event took place, there were tell-tale signs that maybe Judas wasn’t really cut out for the job of Apostle in the first place.

Judas was selected as the treasurer of the group.  One of the other disciples (John) revealed that Judas regularly stole from the treasury (John 12:6).  That was just one clue…but there were others.  For example, on one occasion Judas got really upset when a reformed prostitute brought a bottle of extremely expensive perfume and poured the entire contents on Jesus’ feet as an act of worship and thanksgiving.  Judas sneered at her behavior, considering it a stupid act and a complete waste (Matthew 14:1-10).

Jesus was well aware of all of Judas’ shortcomings…but for whatever reason, He allowed Judas to remain part of the group.  Maybe it was because Jesus and Judas grew up in the same part of the country.  All the other disciples were from northern Israel (Galilee), but Jesus and Judas were both from Israel’s southern region—they were Southern boys. It’s possible that they were even childhood friends.  But sadly, in the end, it was this friendship that led to Jesus’ crucifixion.  A sudden and ironic end to the most incredible ministry the world had ever seen.

The truth is that wherever you find a gathering of people of faith, you’ll invariably find a Judas or two.  Judas’ come in a variety of shapes and sizes.  They’re every gender and every race.  And they don’t just attach themselves to church groups—Judas’ attach themselves to individuals. Chances are you’ve got a Judas in your circle of friends.  They like to be associated with the positive things that others are doing—they want to be a part of your life.  We often overlook the red warning flags about these people—mainly because we hope to see God do in them what we believe He’s done in us.  But don’t fool yourselves—they’re bad news.

They’re gossips, whisperers and talebearers.  They’re experts at starting and perpetuating confusion.  They often complain the loudest, even when they have the least at stake.  They want to influence decisions regarding matters that don’t really concern them and that they don’t even fully understand. There’s never a dull moment when they’re around.  There’s also very little peace when they’re around.  Still, we tend to tolerate them…right?  After all, everybody deserves a chance, don’t they? Speaking of chances, you really don’t give your future much of a chance if you allow these Judas’ to hang around too long.

Because, believe me, Judas’ can tell when you’re about to cut them loose. That’s normally when they do their greatest harm.  In order to preserve and protect themselves, they’ll leave you completely exposed, broken and betrayed.

Which, in a strange way, is sometimes not such a bad place to be.  Nothing tests the legitimacy of our faith like a good old-fashion betrayal.  If there’s any cussing, swearing or brawling still left in our holy vessels, then there’s nothing like betrayal to bring it to the surface.  If we’re serving God for any of the wrong reasons, betrayal will usually expose that too.

Sailors know that a storm normally sends more than enough wind against your sails, but betrayal is one of the few storms that actually takes the wind out of your sails.  It often stops us dead in our tracks, derails our lives and disrupts our progress.  It’s like pulling that card in a board-game that sends you all the way back to the start.  Betrayal hurts—deeply. It forces us to re-examine our values, gather what’s left of our lives and try to move forward again.  That’s exactly what the eleven remaining disciples had to do, and, in the long run, it all worked out okay for them.

In Jesus’ situation, betrayal cost Him His life.  Thankfully, that’s not always the case, and as i ALWAYS SAY , “whatever doesn’t kill you will only make you stronger”.   So if you find yourself still breathing after you’ve been betrayed, take a moment to be grateful.  And while it may be true that betrayal shuts the door on the current chapter of your life, realize that it also opens another door to new possibilities.

Remember, betrayal happens to the best and the wisest of men…but God is still for you and He’ll be with you!  Don’t be afraid to embrace the road ahead of you (just like Jesus’ disciples had to do over 2,000 years ago).  You probably didn’t think it would come this way, but God has stretched His gracious hand right in the middle of your unfair, unjust, wrong situation—and He’s making it right.  He’s also positioning you for an incredible finish! So smile.  Take a deep breath… and go for it!

You might even want to consider sending your Judas a “thank you” post card once you get settled in the promise land.  But remember, there are also Judas’ in your new neighborhood—so don’t forget the lessons you’ve learned.

HERBERT MTOWO

Mistress or just being mistreated and cheapened?

Herbert Prince Mtowo

Mistress: A mysterious sexy woman that a married man sees in secret to have a romantic and sexual relationship with. This is the definition of a mistress. There is good sex, hotel room adventures, late nights, seductive phone calls, exciting secret dates, gifts and the thrill of doing something bad. But is being a mistress as glamorous as it seems?

Yes, BUT only at first. Being a mistress has its exciting moments and these are the moments that convince women to become a mistress in the first place. In the beginning, the mistress holds all the power. She is the one who has the married man under a love spell and she gets all his attention and time that he should be spending with his wife. She is the one he fantasizes about when he is with his wife and the one he misses. He urges for her company and longs to hear her voice. The mistress is the woman a married man makes first priority and will shower her with gifts to keep her happy. This all sounds fun and good, but it is very short lived and eventually, the light goes on and shines on the truth of what the life of a mistress really is and eventually becomes after the sexy stage is over.

Relationships that start off in deception usually end in deception. When a woman gets involved with a married man, she turns a blind eye to the fact that he is a cheater and an unreliable partner. She sees only what she wants to see and believes only what she wants to believe. She acknowledges the fact that he is cheating on his wife with her, but refuses to see that she too is a victim of his selfish behavior- choosing to make herself his victim. Men rarely leave their wives and family for their mistresses, which means that they string their mistresses along, having them believe that one day they will both be together with no more hiding around. Mistresses hang on to this fantasy, believing that their married lover truly loves them and will eventually be with them and this begins a long journey of emotional pain, emptiness and endless waiting.

There are of course cases when a married man will actually leave his wife to be with his mistress, this has been known to happen, but it is rare. Plus, if it does happen, the relationship usually does not last, even if man and mistress go as far as getting married. This is because when the relationship started, it was not planted on solid, honest ground. Instead, the seed of the relationship was planted on unstable ground, fertilized with secrets and lies- regardless of whom the secrets were being kept from and whom the lies were being told to. Secrets and lies disallow people from being their true selves- a part of you has to be put on hold due to the man-mistress circumstance. If the man and his mistress do end up together and get married, they eventually have troubles with trust, because of the way they got together. They both know that they are capable of cheating and going along with cheating and while they may actually love each other- all the facts defining their relationship has the greater influence, whether they want to acknowledge it or not.

Most man-mistress relationships do not get that far though and majority of the times, he will not leave his marriage for his mistress. He may believe at one point that he will, but his feeling of responsibility and need to be loyal to his wife and family take over and he therefore does not leave. Most men have affairs because of communication problems in their marriage or an empty gap that has grown in their marriage and they are unsure on how to approach. They long for good happy company again without complications, and an affair is a good escape for them- but it does not last forever.

 

What is it with men and commitment ?-[Final Part]

Why Men Won’t Commit
Barbara Dafoe Whitehead and David Popenoe just issued their State of Our Unions Report from the National Marriage Project at Rutgers (2002). This report contains an analysis of data gathered in focus groups led by Whitehead and Popenoe that explored the beliefs of men in their 20s about marriage and commitment. Barbara and David would be the first to acknowledge that such research lacks representativeness and sophisticated statistical procedures, but it is nevertheless a method of great value for the generation of further thought, theory, and hypotheses. Some things cannot be initially well understood in highly controlled research. I have scarcely had more enjoyment reading any document in our field. It’s a fascinating report.

Whitehead and Popenoe derived important insights about how men view marriage, their female partners, and the process of growing up. Here are the highlights in my reading of what they found. First and foremost, men report that they can enjoy many of the same benefits by cohabiting rather then marrying. Further, they report few social pressures to marry; not from family, not from friends, and not from the families of the women they live with. They also associate marriage, not cohabitation, with the possibility of financial loss. Another fear expressed is that, in marriage, a woman will want to have children sooner. Across a spectrum of possible changes, they are essentially saying they are not ready and that they would like to put such changes off as long as they possibly can—for example, until their late 20s. Essentially, they report that they are not ready for all the responsibility implied by marriage. To them, cohabitation without marriage provides all the desirable benefits of companionship without the potential risks of marriage.

Whitehead and Popenoe suggest that “men see marriage as a final step in a prolonged process of growing up.” There were two elements of their report that I found particularly intriguing; one disturbing and one semi-humorous. First, Whitehead and Popenoe suggest that many young adults today are seeking soul mates. Ninety-four percent (94%) of younger adults actually express this as the most important feature of what or who they are looking for in a mate (Popenoe & Whitehead 2001). Part of what they implied in that sentiment is that a soul mate is someone who will take them as they are and not try to change them. Disturbingly, some significant number of men essentially reported that part of why they were resisting commitment in marriage was that they were not sure their female cohabitant was their soul mate.

Until they find a soul mate, however, they are willing to wait. They don’t want to “settle” for second best in their choice of a marriage partner, though they don’t have the same standards for a choice of a live-in girlfriend. (p. 12, Whitehead & Popenoe, 2002)
Put in my own rough language, some of these men were reporting this sentiment: “I’m happy here for the time being, sleeping with my partner and letting her care for me in various ways, but I am not sure she’s really ‘the one’ for me, and I’m biding my time here while I keep looking around or until I decide that she is the one.” I wondered as I read their report how many women know that their partners may still be “on the market?” How many think they are on a trajectory toward marriage when they are actually in a stationary, low earth orbit? Surely there are many women who are equally uncertain about a future with a particular man, and, therefore, prefer aspects of cohabitation to marriage for the time being. Yet, I have a hunch many of these women think that their male partners are more locked into a future with them than might actually be the case. That is sobering and sad to me.

On a lighter note, I found it amusing that the men were essentially saying that, when they are married, their wives will be allowed to tell them what to do in a way that is not part of the cohabiting compact. There is some clear sense that marriage requires a greater level of mutual dedication and responsibility—as if they are thinking, “When we’re really teammates in life, you will have earned the right to tell me when there is something wrong with my play. But, not until we cross that line and are clearly on the same team.”

Teammates can ask things of one another, but not until one crosses the line and signs with the team. I found this amusing because I was reflecting on this simple finding in light of the evidence of health benefits for men in marriage (Waite & Gallagher, 2000). Most all scholars assume, rightly so I believe, that a major reason for these benefits for men is that their wives tell them what to do in very important ways: “Why don’t you stop with the beer, that’s your third tonight?” “You need to go to the doctor and get that looked into. I want you to go this week.” “You have been working every night, running yourself ragged. You need to cut back.” “You need more sleep; how are you going to get it?”

I’m pretty sure that one major reason that men live approximately 8 years longer if they are married (and are otherwise healthier in various ways) is that their wives tell them what to do and they do some of what their wives tell them. So, younger men are likely seeing something as a drawback in marriage that may be the major reason why they will live longer if they become (and remain) married.

All of this is consistent, of course, with my theory expressed above that men see the line between marriage and not marriage in ways that are, perhaps, quite different from women; that men see this line in particularly clear terms. Women see the line, too, of course, but men seem to think that marriage will change them, and that being a husband is very different from being a boyfriend or live in partner. They clearly believe that a greater level of responsibility is required in the role of husband than in the role of boyfriend, whereas I really do not think that women have this same sense that they (women) are going to change dramatically when they cross the marriage line. Marriage seems to have a big effect on how men think about themselves, what they do, what a woman can ask of them, and what they’re willing to give. This may be the very reason why men are widely seen as resisting crossing the line between marriage and not marriage, especially in comparison to women. They believe that crossing the line has many implications for how they have to behave and what they need to give to their female partners. There are surely many exceptions, but I think, on average, it’s different for women.

What Happens When Men Cross the Line Deliberately?
Sociologist Steven Nock has been, for years, building the case that marriage changes man, amassing both conceptual and empirical arguments that show this is the case. In his book, Marriage in Men’s Lives (1998), he discusses how men’s belief systems about themselves and their wives seem to change when they cross the line. His argument rests on several points, with the major one being the powerful social role of “husband” that is associated with the institutional of marriage. These institutional forces have, historically, been quite potent and generally constructive—though there have been less constructive elements, as well, which Nock handles well in his book as he contemplates the nature of marriage in our modern culture. Nock shows how men begin to see themselves as fathers, providers, and protectors in marriage. He reports behavior changes, as well. For example, men earn more income when they’re married, work more, and spend less time with friends apart from marriage and family, spending more time with family and community around the family. In many ways, men allocate their time differently when they marry.
Other important changes in men when they “cross the line” have to do with the nature of normal, healthy sacrifices that are required in a good marriage over time. Recent work by Sarah Whitton, me, and Howard Markman at the University of Denver indicates the importance of sacrifice in relationships (Whitton, Stanley, & Markman, 2002). We theorized that people should be most willing to sacrifice for their partners when they have a long term view and they have a sense of “us” or “we” or team. In this research, sacrifice was defined as an act of foregoing immediate self-interest in order to promote the well being of a partner or the relationship. We found that sacrifice was seen as less detrimental to the self when males reported high levels of couple identity and when males and females reported having a long term view for the relationship. However, the association between sacrifice and commitment to the future was far stronger for men than women. The findings did not show that women are more or less likely to report sacrificing than men. The difference was more in the degree to which attitudes about sacrificing were tied to commitment to the future. For men to sacrifice for their partners without resenting it, they seem to need to see a clear future together and clear sense of being a team. For men to sacrifice for their partners freely and fully, they may need to be married—to have fully decided that “this woman is my future.” Whatever flips the switch for women is less linked to the level of commitment to the future. I have an idea what that is, and I will come to that shortly.

My main point here is that commitment in marriage changes men. Crossing over the line changes how they see themselves and how they behave. It changes how they view a relationship with a woman and how they are to act in relation to a woman. To be clear, I am not suggesting that marriage makes a dangerous man a safe man. I am saying that, on average, marriage changes the average man in the direction of greater responsibility and sacrifice to a female partner. Consistent with the major point I made in the previous section, this is partly why men resist marriage. They associate marriage with the expectancy of having to grow up. That step across the line will have a powerful impact on their lives. If they can, many men will resist this until quite late into their 20s.

Walking Over the Line vs. Being Dragged Across It
Premarital cohabitation has received much research attention recently. There is some important gender differences beginning to appear in this literature, that relate to commitment, and that shed further light on the themes presented here. This area of research has led me to think that there are some very important dynamics in how marriages form that have implications for men’s and women’s commitment to their partners in marriage. I want to explore some background from this area of research before presenting a hypothesis about men and women and how numerous couples’ transition to marriage these days.

In our larger survey in Oklahoma and surrounding states, we asked young men and women about their beliefs about cohabitation (Johnson et al., 2002). Of those 18-24 years old, 62% of men and 55% of women thought that living together would improve one’s chances in marriage. While Oklahoma is no doubt different in many ways from other states, I am sure that those high percentages reflect a widely held belief by young adults across the U. S. The belief that cohabitation prior to marriage improves one’s odds for marital success is widely held but it is also seriously flawed. It is a belief based on a theory of discovering compatibility and finding a fit, with the particular hope being that “we’ll live together and we’ll discover whether we’re compatible, whether we’re right for one another.” The problem is that this is a strategy selective for risky relationships with nothing in place to lower risks except the hope of breaking up if the fit is poor. Let me put that in plainer terms and then explain the point in detail: it is becoming clear to Galena Kline, me, and Howard Markman (and many others doing work in this area) that those who are at greater risk may be those most likely to act on this belief; yet the only way this strategy can work is if partners who are poorly matched do, in fact, break up rather than remain together. There simply isn’t another mechanism that most couples avail themselves of to otherwise lower the actual risks a couple may experience.

A theory we have developed, inertia theory , suggests that living together triggers forces that makes it more likely that a couple will get married, even if the fit between the partners was poor to begin with, or they were otherwise at higher risk. What couples may not realize is that ending a cohabiting relationship is more difficult (practically, financially, emotionally, and socially) than ending a dating relationship. In effect, constraint commitment (the source of the inertia) is increased by cohabitation, making continuation of the relationship somewhat more likely than if the identical couple had been merely dating, each retaining full access to separate places to live (Stanley & Markman, 1997). We suspect that this is the glaring fact that unsuspecting young couples do not see when they are acting on the belief that cohabiting can lower their odds of marital failure.

To put the underlying theory here in clear conceptual terms, we think that some cohabiting couples may move into marriage without making a deliberate decision to cross the line together. One of the places where we do see important gender differences in cohabitation research is with regard to commitment levels. In our national sample, selecting respondents who have been married up to 10 years, we found that husbands who lived with their wives before marriage were less interpersonally committed (less dedicated) to their spouses than men who did not live with their partners, even controlling for religiosity (Stanley et al., 2004). This research suggests that premarital cohabitation may be riskier for females than for males because some cohabiting men may not fully commit themselves to their partners in a subsequent marriage. Psychologically, they may not have really crossed the line of commitment to their partners in marriage even though they became legally married. In other words, while they may be married, a higher percentage of couple who cohabit prior to marriage likely did not have two partners who clearly and strongly decided to be married; they moved into marriage more from a process of being carried into it than from a process of making a clear decision. Perhaps one partner, more often the male, was actually coaxed or dragged across the line, so to speak, by the other.

What does all of this mean? I think it means that there are a greater number of marriages than ever before that begin with a “Maybe I do” rather than a clear “I do” at the root of the commitment underlying the marriage (Figure 3). Further, I believe there is evidence in the research on premarital cohabitation that men are much more likely to be the “maybe” factor in marital commitment. Does this matter? I think it does and I can express it best as a hypothesis for future research.

A Hypothesis about Men and Women: Commitment vs. Attachment Based Motivation
Drawing on those findings, I have come to a hypothesis that I hope to directly test in the years to come. My hypothesis is that attachment triggers committed and sacrificial behavior in women whereas a decision to be committed triggers committed and sacrificial behavior in men. In other words, women begin to give their best to men when they are strongly attached. However, men may be less inclined to give fully of themselves to women unless they have decided that a particular woman is their future.

This theory could, therefore, explain these phenomena I have covered here:
• Why men seem to resist marriage more than women, even though there is growing evidence that they see the importance of marriage, in some ways, more than women.
• Why commitment levels for men are very strongly associated with attitudes about sacrificing, but much less so for women.
• Why some, but not all, couples who cohabit prior to marriage are at greater risk, and contain men who score lower than other men on measures of dedication to their mates.
• Why male behavior reflecting responsibility in their lives and toward their wives grows when they marry. Related to this reasoning, I would hypothesize that this change will be found to be greatest and most positive when men make deliberate choices to cross the line, compared to scenarios where they slid across the line or felt compelled to cross it in some way that impairs (or reflects) lower intrinsic, dedication to the partner.

If the overall theory and specific hypotheses expressed here are true, they have important implications. For example, if a female thinks that a male becoming attached to her means that he’s committed, she may be wrong. He may not have crossed the line even if he agrees or suggests that they move in together. In cases where the sense of the future is ambiguous, people may grossly misinterpret what behavior, such as moving in together, means to their partner. While I may take this prediction back in the future (and ingest my words), I believe the tendency is generally for females more than males to over interpret what it means that a male is willing to move in with a female—at least in many parts of our society at this time. Some males are, indeed, very attached and seriously thinking about a future with a particular woman. But others may merely be thinking “this is great for now, until I figure out what I’m doing and who I really want to be with in life.” Such a disconnect puts women at greatly increased risks for adverse outcomes, especially if a child results from the union—which has become increasingly common.

Conclusion (and Paradox)
An ancient Greek philosopher, Zeno, described a paradox that I believe is relevant to the themes presented here. He was a philosopher who focused, in part, on the nature of continuums and discontinuities. He posited numerous paradoxes about these and other subjects. Here is one of his masterpieces. Imagine that you’re in a room and you walk halfway between where you are and the wall. Then you do this again, walking halfway between where you are now and the wall. And again, and again, and again. And. well, you get the idea. Zeno noted that if you keep going halfway between where you are and the wall, you will never get to the wall.

Is_your_man_commitmed?


Now picture the wall as a line. If you keep going halfway between where you are and the line, you will never cross the line. You’ll get right up to the edge of it, you may even get dragged over it, but you’ll never cross the line from a deliberate choice. Half steps and measures don’t result in the full commitment that a deliberate choice confers and confirms. A deliberate choice brings the fullest sense of mutual dedication in life, together, which in turn causes marriages to thrive. There are many couples who, through any number of pathways, make a very clear decision to cross over the line, as partners in life. They have this understanding as a base from which to move into the future. But men who have not yet committed to their female partners will, understandably so, resist crossing the line. They may inch up to it. They may dangle a toe over it. Yet, without the clear, deliberate step over, the commitment is at best, Maybe I do, not the firmly expressed and embraced I do.

Marriage_means_Commitment