Antonella is convinced that her husband got a secret parking ticket. He hasn’t mentioned the ticket to her, and she found a photograph of it. But with Byron Katie’s guidance, she finds a startling distinction between certainty and openness: when she is certain, she’s frightened and hurt and wonders if she chose the wrong man; when she’s open, she is “the happiest wife in the world.” “You would be so free,” Katie says, “that when he came home, you would ask him about the ticket. For all you know, he just forgot to tell you.” Having lost her certainty about the secrecy of the ticket, Antonella finds a surprising turnaround: that she was hiding her knowledge of the ticket from her husband. “When you stop accusing your partner,” Katie says, “you can see how the war begins with you.”
Byron Katie: Antonella, from the UK. Hi, Antonella. Antonella: Hi. So, sweetheart, read what you wrote to me. Yes. Read the email. The first statement of my Worksheet is that “my husband hides my things.” And my answer to the questions “Is that true?” and “Can you absolutely know that this is true?” is “yes,” because I have the proofs. So, I don’t know how to look deeper inside my thoughts since the reality is this one. Can you please help me to unlock my Work? OK. So, “he hides things from you”? Yes. OK. So... He does. So, what’s an example, a moment in time where you believe that? For instance, like, he took a fine. He took? A fine for the car. It was not well-parked. Uh-huh. He didn’t tell me anything. Uh-huh. So, he hid this from you? Yeah. OK. So, where were you when you had the thought, “he hid,” we’ll call it a parking ticket; “he’s hiding this parking ticket from me.” Yeah. So, when did you notice that he had the ticket? I knew it because in that time I was not at home, because I was on holiday in Italy with my son. And what happened is that he took a picture of the fine with the iPad. And when I came home, after many days, I saw the pictures, the picture there. I didn’t ask him anything, because I was waiting for him to tell me. Yes. But he didn’t and he erased the picture. OK. So, you’re standing there with his cell phone. You see the picture. Yes. And in that moment you had the thought, “He’s hiding this from me.” Yeah. OK. So, stay in that moment. You see? You’re there with the cell phone. You’re looking at it. Uh-huh. OK. So, where are you? You’re in your apartment? Yes. OK. And are you in the kitchen? Are you in the living room? Living room. In the living room. All right. You see you standing there? Are you sitting or standing? I’m sitting. OK. So, you see you there? I see me. I see myself. OK. So, hold on to that image. So, in that moment, you see that “he’s hiding this from you.” Yes. Is it true? He hasn’t told me about it yet. So, he’s; so, he… That’s what we mean by “he’s hiding it from you.” OK? Yes. He is. So, your answer to the first two questions is, Yes, “he’s hiding from me” and I can absolutely know that it’s true, “he’s hiding it from me,” because there it is on his phone. I see it. OK? Yes. There is the evidence. Yes. So, how do you react when you believe the thought? Because your question says, I don’t know how to look deeper inside my thoughts since the reality is “he’s hiding it from me.” So, now we’re going to answer your question. What do you do, when you’re doing The Work and it’s a “yes” for sure? OK? I think that the problem is, that is not a thought, but is the reality. OK. So … I don’t know how to investigate the reality. Exactly, which is why you wrote me. Yes. So, is it true? Yes. Can you absolutely know that it’s true? Yes. I hear that from you. So, now what you do? You just trust The Work and you go to the next question. Notice how you react when you believe the thought, “He hides things from me.” What happened to your emotions in that moment? How did it feel when you believed the thought? I feel downhearted. I feel sad. I feel unhappy. I feel that I can’t trust my husband. Yes. And sometimes I think I chose the wrong person. Yes. Because … Well, not, because … Because when you go into “because,” you’re no longer doing the inquiry and The Work stops working. OK. So, when you hear “because” or “but.” So, how do you react when you believe the thought, “He’s hiding things from me?” Everything you described. You lose trust in him. Yeah. You become frightened. I become suspicious. Suspicious. What else is he hiding? And you feel that. OK. So, now you know how you react when you believe the thought. OK? Now, you trust The Work and you move to question number 4. There are only 4. So, you’re sitting there in the living room. OK? With you cell phone. You’re looking at the ticket. You see the ticket. Who would you be without the thought, “He’s hiding something from me?” I would just trust him 100 percent. Yeah. I would be relaxed. I would be, I think, the happiest wife in the world. Yeah. You’d be so free that when he came home you could just ask him. “Did you get a parking; when did; you didn’t tell me about this parking ticket. Did you forget?” You would be that secure. That trusting. That free. Who would you be without the thought, “He’s hiding this from me?” Free. Free to ask. Free to trust him. Free to trust you. I’m scared to ask him. Yeah. Yeah. You’re afraid of the truth that you’re already holding in your hand. Yeah. You’re afraid to ask him. Because that would … “He’s hiding something from me.” Turn it around. I … I hide things … I am … He’s afraid … He’s hiding things from me. I’m hiding things … … from him. from him. You’re hiding the fact that you know he has a parking ticket. Yes. Absolutely. You’re hiding things from him and you’re scaring you. Yes, because if I ask him he’s going to become aggressive, because I discovered the truth by myself. I would so question that. How do you react when you believe the thought, “He’s going to become aggressive?” I’m scared. I don’t want to fight with him. And you don’t get honest with him. Yes. And so you become aggressive. You lose respect for him and you become aggressive. So, if; even though I’m scared, I better ask him. Well, I leave that to you. But if you’re not frightened, if you’re not scared, you don’t have a problem asking. But you choose to hide things from him. That’s what we do know. You hide things from him. Yes, I do. Because you think he’ll become aggressive. So, you can question that. And also, that could be why he doesn’t tell you about the parking ticket. He could believe, “Oh, she’ll become aggressive if I tell her.” Uh-huh. Probably. So, I need to do The Work even on my … Yes-yeses Yeah. On my fear. Yes. Just because I believe something and it’s true, I believe it’s true, it doesn’t mean I don’t continue with the other 2 questions. How do I react when I believe that thought? Who would I be without the thought? So, let’s see if we can find another turnaround. “He hides things from me.” And you found the first turnaround. I hide things from him. Uh-huh. Now, can you find another turnaround? “I hide things …” To me. To me! I can’t find an example. We live our lives in so much denial. We have no idea what we’re hiding from ourself. For example: You had no idea that you were hiding things from him. And you were. What am I hiding to me? Well, that’s one of the things you were hiding to you. So, if you told him, “He would become aggressive.” Yes. Is it true he would become aggressive? Can you absolutely know it’s true, “He would become aggressive?” If you showed him the ticket on his iPhone or say, “I know about the ticket. Why didn’t you tell me?” So, what am I hiding to me? Well, I’m going to leave that for you to find out. But if you fill in a Judge-Your-Neighbor Worksheet on that situation with your husband, all 6 statements on that Judge-Your-Neighbor Worksheet, and then you … I’ve done it. … and then you question it. Well, you stopped when you saw it was true. No. No. I filled the Judge-Your-Neighbor Worksheet in. Oh, good. I definitely did The Work. And I replied, OK, “Yes. It’s true.” because it’s the reality. I even went to the 3rd and the 4th question, but I couldn’t find, like, the turnaround because I don’t how to overcome the situation. Well, you don’t have to… Because I believe it’s not a thought but is a fact. Well, it’s a fact that you are hiding that from him. That’s a fact. And for all you know, he forgot to tell you. But what you do know is you’re hiding something from him. And you believe he’ll become aggressive. So, I would question that. And maybe he will. Maybe he won’t. But by the time you finish the Worksheet, what happens for me when I do a whole Worksheet, it’s the sweetest; it is the kindest; I don’t confront him with it. I just say, “Sweetheart, I was going through your phone, I saw this ticket and I was wondering: Are you afraid to tell me about it? Or did you just forget? Or is this really your ticket?” Yeah. That’s very different than accusing him. But it’s what happens. It’s the shift that takes place once we fill in a Worksheet and do The Work on it. We stop accusing and we’re very opened to inquiring with ourselves and others without an attitude of, like, “You are the cause of my lack of trust.” Thank you. You’re welcome. And if you ever need a little help, remember those certified facilitators are out there. Thank you so much, Katie. Oh, you’re so welcome, precious. Thank you for your email. Bye, bye. Bye.