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How do I deal with a failed ultimatum?


Dear Lovestruck,

Good outlook! It seems you have a great guy who wants to work through things. However, you will need to directly explain your feelings until his "sensitivity" training is complete.

It will help you to talk through your feelings so that they are
not bottled up. It will help him if he has a clear understanding of what is really bothering you, not just that you are upset.

Your Ultimatum Didn't Fail

Your ultimatum was "give me your all or we're through" and he decided to propose. This is a good sign.

Chatting Isn't Always Flirting

Chatting isn't always flirting. When you issued your directive, he (possibly) heard "quit testing the waters with other girls and choose me." His answer to you was "you're the one for
me." Chatting online may simply be a conversation outlet for him.


Get real, this guys sounds freaky on his computer!

There does not necessarily have to be anything illicit or flirtatious about it. There may be but you haven't proved that to be the case. When Heather was pregnant with our first child and we had a test come back with abnormal results on our baby, Brad did a lot of research to find out all of our options.

One of the places he went was a live chat room at There were many women there from whom Brad got a lot of advice. He often chatted with them when pulling late shifts at work but that was to pass the time. He was bored and spent hours on the computer. That had absolutely no impact on one of the best periods of our marriage.

So, even if we assume that he doesn't think he was doing anything wrong, you are still left with very real feelings of betrayal and jealousy. If he truly plans on being with you for the rest of his life, he needs to participate in your feelings as well.

Ask Questions

Be direct and talk it through. Ask him "Why do you spend hours online chatting with other people? It makes me jealous and that bothers me." Use those words and don't beat around the bush with questions like "Is there something I'm doing that makes you upset?"

Talk Using Direct Facts

Be direct, most men just simply "do not get" indirect approaches that women naturally understand. "If he loves me, he'll understand" are ideas that women share with each other. Men (even those who are head-over-heels in love) really need to be hit over the head with direct
facts to understand.

You stated that you already talked with him about this and he would do whatever it takes to work through it. He even offered up to give up chatting if necessary.

We still get the idea that he might not truly understand what
your feelings are other than you are upset. Assume the best and directly talk through your feelings until both of you "get it."

Brad & Heather


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