Mid 40's wife is couple of years younger. Married for 24 yrs. Swallowed the pill about 4 months ago
Gone through 90% of the sidebar material, along with endless hours on the forum. Always lifted on and off for 20 years, but have been dialing it in for the last 60+ days. Lifting 5 days a week, diet is on point. 6'5 220
Wife is a solid 8 I'm a couple points back, but the lifting is helping.
I'm moving slowing on everything with her, since we have been married so long, any changes like this are noticed right away and watched.
STFU has been my main "go to" along with A&A, which I can handle pretty well. I'm good with verbal gymnastics.
Here is the problem. Anytime I try to introduce ANY dread, or STFU I get some quick and fast comfort tests. I'm working on passing them, some I pass, some I fail. The problem is she is Hot, she works out 1+ hours a day, fit, tan, and honestly a fun person to be around. But for whatever reason, she has low-self esteem. So the minute I STFU, I get "you don't like talking to me" "what's wrong?" "Is everything Ok?" "you don't want anything to do with me"
She and my kids (and some extended family) have basically been my social life. We have "our" friends as well. As I've been slowly connecting with some old friends, and outside the house hobbies, she has been giving me the typical "oh, I see.. you would rather go be with them than with me" not every time, but you can see her lack of self worth bubbling up.
How does one handle a wife that clearly has a higher SMV, but acts like she has low self esteem? I can tell this dread shit is going to take time, and I even have to go slower than I am feeding it to her right now.
On the bright side, she is responding VERY well to me planning things, telling her where we are going and what time we are leaving. The other point is, she has always been one to say "Oh, man I can't stand guys that are all built up with muscles, it's gross" Hmm.. guess who is rubbing chest and triceps during sex and saying "wow. you are getting strong" WTF Man? It's very interesting to see how they SAY one thing, but the lizard brain takes over and they act another.