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Reconciliation :
Something more than renewed vows

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66charger ( member #69471) posted at 12:14 AM on Saturday, July 16th, 2022

On the practical side, I'd say plan romantic dates with her

Where did you first meet her?
Where was your first date?
First concert. First formal dinner. What did you do during the glory days?

Make a list of all the things you did in the early days of romance and find out if you can book them in order. Do your homework. Know the flights, hotels and dates that will work. Sit her down with the list and ask for a do over.

Make all of your best "old" memories "new". Reminisce and Repeat.

Corny always works when it is sincere.

posts: 322   ·   registered: Jan. 17th, 2019
id 8744977
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OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 10:15 AM on Saturday, July 16th, 2022

It seems you are talking about a need to reclaim a wedding day, a beginning, a celebration. I think this is a beautiful step forward as you try to move away from the triggers and hurt of the old and toward the optimism of the new.

A wedding is important because it is a spiritual and public proclamation, so you will want to have something that feels grand for that reason. I realize the first vows were disregarded, but the idea is that this is a new start or second chance. So I think the grandness of the commitment does matter.

My opinion is that the new ceremony should combine letting go of the old and welcoming the new, and it should be very honest and shared in front of others--in person or video. I don't know where the two of you would feel best 'sending something off.' The sending off could be notes where you have each written your pain and regrets (rip and throw), could be your first, hopefully inexpensive wedding bands, could be something symbolic like feathers that represent the pain that floated between you or sand that represents each tiny hurt or injustice you have lived together. Then maybe you each say something short about "letting go of our old, damaged selves" and "letting go of the old marriage" (and old date), and then throw these things into...the ocean or Great Lake? Can you charter a boat? The mountains? Can you hike up to the top and take video? The top of the Empire State Building? Do you know anyone who can get you guys up to that secret little 103rd floor balcony?

After the letting go, you could move into a celebration of the new. Poems? Tattoos? Vows? You could do something symbolic like give each other blood in a vial like Angelina Jolie and Billy Bob did. Lol. Hey, whatever moves you! It has a certain specialness. Or a lock of hair? A special, personal possession that you each value (award, photo, religious symbol)? Claddagh rings? (Who doesn't love the two hands holding the heart?) New rings? What about having rings made where you each have half and it is complete only when together? Or infinity symbols?

And then lastly, I think the day/date should be specially chosen and acknowledged in your ceremony to truly reclaim the new date and let go of the old one. Maybe you even honor it to close out your ceremony. Maybe it's religiously significant like Christmas, or maybe it's your wife's birthday or her favorite grandmother's birthday? Maybe it's the first day of Spring? Or Winter Solstice? But by picking a day that is already full of beauty, you will feel even more honored to restart your journey of true commitment (says me, idk). You could close your ceremony by discussing the beauty of the date and how you will honor it by creating a beautiful new marriage.

Amazing!

I feel that by finding a wide open space to feel the vastness of possibility in this world--for growth and hope, using that wide open space to let go of all the hurt and bad memories, sharing in a special giving of both a gift or symbol and committed words, and then honoring the beauty of the new date and all it represents, you will really feel the significance of the moment. And a new, joyous event in your lives will be reclaimed and celebrated each year. If you decide on an intimate ceremony and take video, you can have a little reception/party when you get back and show friends and family.

Idk, it's just an idea! But maybe it will help you come up with something that feels right.

Good luck!

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 10:25 AM, Saturday, July 16th]

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5604   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8745010
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hikingout ( member #59504) posted at 2:51 PM on Tuesday, July 19th, 2022

You said that you haven’t done enough to make her feel safe. If that’s the case, I think she is looking for a reason to feel better. She hopes this will be it. Everyone has talked about the day to day because that is really where the relationship heals.

My experience is this-keep in mind, both of us cheated (I did it first)

We sat down one day and talked about what our dream relationship would look like realistically. What each of us found is we wanted mostly the same things - easy companionship, renewed passion, renewed trust, love (with both of us agreeing on the definition, honesty, authenticity, etc. We wrote it all down kind of like a patchwork manifesto of what we wanted and the ways we would achieve it. This was about six months ago, and I can tell you there hasn’t been a day that we haven’t made our relationship a reflection of this writing.

We have talked about renewing our vows on the anniversary of when we wrote it, but we don’t know that we want to. We still celebrate our anniversary though, because we both still want that to have meaning. I am not sure how I feel about celebrating on a different day because it’s all fabric of the same marriage. Our marriage has many high points but it also has history of infidelity. I don’t feel that nullifies our original vows.

Grand gestures can be nice but I feel a lot more when my husband and I both work each day to connect, get to know each other again, and lean in to each other’s needs. A marriage is not just formed when saying vows it’s formed by the day to day gestures. Listening and not feeling defensive, trying to surprise the other, making them a favorite meal, making a new hobby together, forming daily love rituals (kissing goodbye or hello, non-sexual cuddling or massages, 15 minutes of meaningful conversation a day, etc). It’s all about reconnecting and creating more paths towards connection. I would maybe do your own manifesto and after a year of solidly following it and both of you working on how she can feel
More safe, then consider the one year mark of following that manifesto your new anniversary.

5 years of hard work
Reconciled
WS & BS

posts: 6136   ·   registered: Jul. 5th, 2017   ·   location: Arizona
id 8745381
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