Some things you should consider if your wife is controlling and fearful with narcissistic traits.
In this video coaching newsletter, I discuss an email from a viewer who claims to have read 3% Man 10 times. However, he does the opposite of what it teaches and submits to his controlling, manipulative and fearful wife. He can’t see his friends, and she constantly threatens to divorce him and keep him from his son if he doesn’t comply with her unreasonable wishes. She has zero respect for him as a man, and he doesn’t have the guts to stand up to her.
He doesn’t like the way things are but has painted himself into a corner with his options and wants to stay married for the sake of his son. My comments are in bold italics like this below in the body of his email.
Obviously, this guy, he kind of deserves our compassion, maybe our pity, but when you look at the things he’s doing, you’ve got to remember, no one will ever do or say anything to you that you don’t invite them to do. This guy is constantly enabling this behavior in his wife. And he claims he’s read 3% Man ten times.
I read your book at least 10 times. When I follow what you teach AND submit to my wife of over 12 years, things are great; awful when I don’t submit.
How does it feel, as a man, to be the woman in the relationship? Obviously, if things were going well by submitting to your wife, which is unnatural for a man, he wouldn’t be writing this email in the first place. So, right off the bat, you can tell by the second sentence, he’s trying to absolve himself from any personal responsibility. And you’ll see as the email goes, he just kind of painted himself into a corner, “Well, I can’t do any of this stuff because this. But hey, what can you do to help me?” You’re going to do the opposite of what the book teaches, and you’re shocked that she’s a tyrant?
In the past two years she has forbidden me from having my closest friends over to the house or me going over to theirs, because they “are not safe” (Covid), yet she arbitrarily has allowed many people into our inner circle.
So, his friends can’t come over because of Covid, but hers, “Come on over. No problem. You’re good.” The strongest negotiating position is being able to walk away and mean it. And in every relationship, every intimate relationship, every professional relationship, and your personal relationships, you’ve got to set and enforce healthy boundaries. And when you act like a doormat, like this guy has for the better part of over a decade now, it’s kind of hard to change course, because you’ve trained her to be this way.
She displays fear whenever she is crossed, which leads to threats, (like divorce and keeping me from my son).
Oh boy, that just sounds like fun. “If you don’t comply, I’m going to divorce you and not allow you to see your son.” And, unfortunately, there are millions of dudes in the world that are in a similar situation. And they just keep going, “I don’t want to piss my wife off. I don’t want her to get upset at me.” So, they’re always walking around on eggshells. Real masculine. Real leadership type energy.
Though I am an active member of our household, she always finds fault with me, says I’m a bad dad, bad husband, etc.
Where is the upside of being with this woman? Remember, no one will ever do or say anything to you that isn’t a direct reflection of how they feel about themselves in a moment. Therefore, she’s always at fault, she’s a bad mother, she’s a bad wife, etc. She’s projecting. Deep down, she knows.
But the problem is, this guy is not man enough to stand up to her, because he’s afraid. An afraid man is not a man that’s going to make a woman feel safe submitting. That’s why she doesn’t submit, because this guy is bitch. Plain and simple. It’s harsh, but you can go through the email and you’re like, this is not how a man acts. This is how a beta male acts.
I don’t know any other way to “show up” when my efforts are dismissed.
Well, you should show up as a man is supposed to show up, because obviously the way you’re “showing up,” like an insecure chick, is not working. Because even when you walk on eggshells, she still absolutely brutalizes you and treats you like a doormat, and you just keep going,”Oh, can I have some more?”
She is wonderful with my family, is a great mother, cook, and smart, which I appreciate. I sometimes leave when the crazy comes out, but that takes time away from my kid, and he sees Dad having to take it.
Yeah, your son’s going to grow up and be as big of a pussy as you are. And then he’s going to go out and marry a woman just like your wife, who’s just going to dominate and humiliate him on the daily. Is that what you want for your son? Is that manly? Is that being masculine? Is that being the head of the household? Is that being the kind of man that your son would look up to and want to emulate? Is that the kind of man that your wife would respect and admire and willingly submit to?
I say take it, because when I get stronger and stand up for myself, she will gaslight me by dumping all that she says and does on me, as well as following through with threats to leave and go who knows where, (which I have learned it is best not react to and let it run its course).
This is your castle. This is your kingdom. If she wants to be abusive, emotionally, mentally, verbally, then she can go on down the road, and she can leave. And she can come back whenever. If I were you, I’d be getting in the best shape of my life to look good, to feel good, so you get attention from other women, because that would be good for your self-esteem. And also, that will show your wife that you have other options besides her. Which, if I’m a betting man, I would say, more than likely, she’s probably overweight and unhealthy. Maybe I’m wrong, but if I was a betting man, I would be willing to wager on that.
She does this stuff covertly, and the only other people who know how she can be are my closest friends, (the ones she doesn’t want me around).
Well, they’re your friends, and you should maintain your friendships, no matter what. No matter how much she bitches or complains, you’re not her slave. I mean, seriously, dude. You’ve got to have some fucking self respect. I mean, Jesus Christ, dude. Maybe you should bend down to check and make sure your balls are actually still there.
The love that we have had and can have is so strong and wonderful, and we can make a great team.
Yeah, you sound like a really great team. I’m sure everybody listening is going, “Wow, I’d like to have a teammate like her. That guy, he’s got it made.”
I don’t want to leave my son without his dad…
Which is admirable, and you shouldn’t.
…every other week or whatever…
Well, you shouldn’t be the one leaving your house. If she wants to leave, she can leave, and your son can stay with you.
…which would hurt me very badly as well, and I’m very faithful. I just don’t know how I can change or what I can do so we can get back on track.
Well, you have to act like a man, because acting like a bitch ain’t working for you. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results. But the very first sentence in your email is like, “Hey, Corey, this whole email is about why I can’t apply what’s in your book, because my wife might get pissed at me.” Hey, dude, big secret: your wife is already pissed at you, because you’re acting like a bitch. You don’t act like a man. That’s why she’s constantly a tyrant. You’re enabling her behavior. You tolerate it, therefore, you continually invite more of it. Because you never stand up to her. All she’s got to do is threaten to leave, and then, “Oh, I’m sorry, your highness!”
I want to honor her fears so she can feel safe, but the hypocrisy is dubious.
Well, you’re enabling it, so congratulations. That’s on you. And the only way she’s going to feel safe is if you man the fuck up, act like a man consistently, put her in her place lovingly, and set and enforce healthy boundaries. If she starts berating you, just say, “Don’t talk to me that way. It’s not loving,” and take your son, go for a drive. Take him to the park, go do something fun. And then, come back later that night. “Where were you?!”
Hop in the car and go stay at a friend’s house, or whatever. Or go stay in another bedroom and lock the door while she screams. She’s got to learn that if she’s nice and kind, you’re happy to be there and listen to her. But as soon as she starts the bitch act, you leave. You physically leave, go somewhere else. Men aren’t going to sit here and take this beration. Only a beta male will.
I try to court her, but she limits where she will go arbitrarily…
I also bet she’s probably a liberal.
…and can’t give me any clue as to what she would like to do together as a couple, (despite my repeated attempts).
Well, if you had actually read the book ten times, you’d know it’s your job as a man to extend an invitation. Instead of, “Where would you like to go, your highness?”
I need in-person time with my friends but wonder if a hard stand is the right way to proceed.
The strongest negotiating position is being able to walk away and mean it. You need to have a heart to heart with this woman and tell her what you want and what you expect. I also would suggest that you guys go to marriage and couples counseling. But if you’re just going to keep acting like a bitch and let her treat you like a doormat and berate you, it’s not going to do anything. Nothing’s going to change. Being extra nice to her is not going to make her respect you as a man, because you never stand up for yourself. Therefore, she doesn’t feel safe with you.
This is bad for the welfare of my family and my mental health.
You think? And the other thing that I would also do if I were you is I would go talk to a divorce attorney and get all of your ducks in a row. I don’t know where you live, what state you live in, or what country. I kind of get the impression from what you said in the beginning, you might be in Europe or the U.K. or something. But you should talk to a divorce attorney and get all of your ducks in a row, especially if she’s going to threaten you and try to take your son from you.
And so, the best thing to do is to have all of your ducks in a row. I think it was Sun Tzu who said, “Conceal your plans from your enemy. And then when you are ready, strike like a thunderbolt.” So, let her think everything is just hunky dory, and wonderful, and peachy. And then, if she’s not going to change, and if the couples therapy and counseling doesn’t work, then divorce her on your terms.
The covert part of this makes it so no one else will see what I see, and her low self-esteem will not allow her to take fault, (which she masks by blaming others and finding fault with them).
Yeah, if you want to invite your friends over, I mean, you live there, this is your house too. And if she wants to get out of control and yell and curse at you, yell and curse back. Tell her to get the fuck out. Tell her to go on down the road. It’s your house, too. You pay all the bills.
Any thoughts on how to proceed while staying married would be greatly appreciated.
Well, there’s this book that you claim to have read ten times, but it’s obvious you’re doing the exact opposite of it. So, you’ve created this tyrant over the last 10 or 12 years. You’ve enabled her behavior. She might be a narcissist. I don’t know, I’m not a psychologist. I’m sure you can go find one and talk to them. But I’d talk to a divorce attorney, and I would also talk to a marriage and couples therapist, because things have got to change, and you’ve got to let her know that you’re not happy.
Get your ass in the gym. I’d be working out, taking care of yourself. I’d get back involved with your friends, your hobbies, your interests, all those things you gave up, because you were trying not to piss her off, and do them, because that’s what makes you a well rounded man. And at the end of the day, she’s already pissed off at you anyway, so you might as well let her get pissed off and do the things that you like doing. Instead of not doing them, and she’s still pissed off at you. Because if you just keep walking on eggshells, she’s just going to get worse and worse and worse. And who knows, she’ll probably end up leaving you, cheating on you and leaving you for some guy that actually acts like a man.
But, I mean, this is one of the most pathetic emails that I’ve read in a long time. You need to take a long, hard look in the mirror, dude, and ask yourself, is this how you want to live? Do you think this is a good example to set for your son? To just allow your wife to berate you day in and day out like this, without standing up for yourself? Without setting and enforcing healthy boundaries? Because your son’s going to grow up and he’s going to get with a woman who’s going to treat him the same way, because that’s the example that you and your wife are presenting to your son.
So, that’s what I would do if I were you. I mean, if what you’re doing is working, which obviously you would never have written the email in the first place, then keep doing it. But you can’t do the opposite of what the book teaches and then be shocked that nothing’s changed with her behavior. And I can tell you’re afraid to stand up to her, of what she might do, but how is it worse than what you’re already putting up with?
But like I said, I would go seek out legal counsel in your city, in your country, and get your ducks in a row, in case you have to dip out. I know you say you want to stay married, but like you already said, it’s affecting the welfare of your family and your mental health. I mean, come on, dude. Have some self respect. At some point, you’ve got to grow up, take your balls back and act like a man. You’re going to be loving and kind and calm, and if she’s a nasty bitch to you and won’t calm down, take your son and go for a drive. Take him to the park. Take him to the toy store. Go take him to lunch or dinner, or go do something with him. Spend some time with your kid, and let her sit at home and stew. Go hang out with your friends, or whatever.
And if you come home an she’s like, “Where have you been?” It’s like, “Don’t talk to me like that. Don’t talk to me that way.” Go in the bedroom and lock the door. Read a book. Turn some music on. Just say, “I’m happy to talk to you, but I’m only going to talk to you when you’re calm, and you’re sweet, and you’re loving. That’s it. I’m not going to put up with you berating me day in and day out.” You have to stand up for yourself. And you can’t do that five times, and then the sixth time you just cave to her, because then you’re just enabling the behavior again. You have to be consistent.
You have to consistently set boundaries and enforce them 100% of the time. Because if you don’t, then all it communicates to her is you’re not strong enough to stand up to her, because you’re afraid of her. But this is the reason why she’s such a tyrant is because you are so afraid of her. You’re so afraid to stand up for yourself, and speak from your heart, and communicate what you want, and set and enforce healthy boundaries.
Hey, if she takes off for a couple of weeks and goes God knows where, or whatever, have your friends over. Have a party, have a good time without her, especially with having your kid there. You’ve got to enjoy your life, man, and you just can’t let this woman wreck your life like this and control you like this. Deep down, it’s not what she wants. The reason she’s such a bitch is because you’re forcing her to be the man of the family, and she doesn’t like it. She’s not a man, she’s a woman. But you’ve completely flipped the gender roles in here.
I’d say there’s probably also a good chance that she’s a feminist. That’s why I said that you may not be able to salvage this. It’s not your job to fix her or to change her. You’ve got to set and enforce healthy boundaries, and if she’s not going to be sweet and loving and kind, then you’re going to have to divorce her. But, like I said, before you talk about that or think about that, you need to go see a divorce attorney so you comply with the laws in your state or your country, wherever you happen to be, and get your ducks in a row.
Then you give her a chance to turn things around. You give her a chance to go to marriage and couples counseling. And if she won’t do that, I’d serve her with divorce papers and tell her to get the fuck out. And the only way you’d give her another chance is if she completely changes her attitude, changes her mind, gets her ass in shape, talks to you, sweet and lovingly. Because this is a nightmare. This is like every guy’s worst nightmare. And I’m sure now, all the guys are like, “Woo, man, I thought I had it bad.”
But it’s like, you’re enabling your behavior. You’re encouraging this to continue. And so, at some point for yourself, and for your son, and quite frankly, for her, because they both need you to be the man of the household, speak to her in a loving, calm and respectful manner. And if she won’t talk to you lovingly, calmly, then you leave the situation. Like I said, hop in the car. Go stay at your mother’s. Take your take your son to go see his grandparents, or whatever, or his aunt’s and uncle’s. Go do something fun without her.
Show her that you’re going to have a damn good time, with or without her. If she wants to be part of the fun bus, great. If she wants to be a bitch in heat and high heels, well, that’s fine too, but you’re just going to be somewhere else until she works that out of her system. And love is playful and fun. You also should be playfully mocking her, especially when she blows her top. It’s like, “I love it when you talk dirty to me. I love it when you behave this way. This is so sweet and loving. I think I’m going to film this and put on TikTok and go, ‘Gee, for all you single guys out there, look what you’re missing out on, being married to a woman like this.'” Film her. Film when she’s doing it. Film her when she’s going crazy, and then throw it in her face and say, “Look how silly you look.”
I mean, seriously, at some point, dude, you’ve got to stand up for yourself. You’ve got to take your power back, because you’re enabling all of this. This is all on you. You’re the man of the household. You’re the king of the kingdom. You’re giving her permission to continually treat you this way, and she resents the hell out of you for it. She doesn’t respect you as a man, because you won’t stand up for yourself. And so, she doesn’t trust your masculine core, and that’s why she continues to behave this way.
And it’s also possible she’s mentally ill and there’s no way you can help her, there’s no way to fix this. But, like I said, talk to a divorce attorney, talk to a marriage and couples counseling team, or therapists, or whatever, and see if you can get her to sit down, because this can’t continue. You said yourself, it’s not good for your mental health, and it’s definitely not good for your son to watch this crap, because this is what he’s going to model when he grows up.
So, if you’ve got a question or a challenge and you’d like to get my help, go to UnderstandingRelationships.com, click the Products tab at the top of your screen and book a coaching session with yours truly.
*Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. **Free with a new Audible.com membership
If you have a question you would like me to consider answering in a future Video Coaching Newsletter, you can send it (3-4 paragraphs/500 words max) to this email address: [email protected]
If you feel I have added value to your life, you can show your appreciation by doing one of the following three things:
From my heart to yours,
Author, Speaker, Peak Performance Coach, Entrepreneur