I’ve forgiven him. I brought dysfunction in to this marriage also (codependency). I spent over 13years trying to change him (there’s the codep. in me lol) He’s a product of his childhood as am I. But that doesn’t make it hurt any less and doesn’t mean we have to stay in the marriage. I’m no longer angry or hurt. Nor do I feel shame or guilt for how I feel towards him now. Mentally I’ve made peace with what’s happened. I taught him how to treat me and I enabled him. But there’s simply been too much damage. I have no desire to even think about liking him. I’m investing all my energy on my recovery and attempting to help my 12yr old son learn healthy ways to deal with his negative emotions. I’ve got a long way to go. I continue to tell myself “progress not perfection”
I guess I am not the only one. He cheated on me multiple times. He kept texting other girls but wont text me. I saw a girl dressing up in his bedroom on his phone but he told me a friend visited with his girlfriend and they took his phone. I had to believe him because I love him. He will break up with me when he goes through my phone and realize a guy texted me. Just recently, I went to the house and the while place was locked but he was inside with a woman. I went to the back where the bedroom window is and I heard him talking with a woman. I called and he told me he’s not home. Am just devastated. What is wrong with me? Am I not beautiful enough?

I remember a brief conversation my parents had when I was 17 years old. My father, who had the day off and was working in the garage, came into the house and said to my mother, “Hey, I need to run to the store to buy a ladder. Wanna come?” Without even looking up from washing the dishes, my mom replied, “Why would I want to go with you to buy a ladder? That’s not fun.”


I have been married for five years, with my husband for twelve years. I’m not really sure if we should stay together or not. Last year I left him for three months then came back and now he says “he is just waiting for me to leave again”. We have been having the same fights for 12 years. They are- I don’t clean the house the way he thinks I should and I don’t have sex with him enough. I am not happy in our marriage but I feel like I’m stuck. We have a 10 year old and twin 3 years olds, I don’t have a job or a place to go. I have no friends and I can’t stay with my mom(she has her own issues). Everything inside me is screaming that in order for me to be happy I have to get away from this marriage, but I feel like I can’t. I’m scared that I will not be able to take care of my kids. I am also afraid that he won’t let me take the kids. He has never been physically abusive but recently when we start arguing he threatens that he will get violent with me, so now I’m scared of that too. I feel like I keep coming up with reasons not to leave. I know that it will be hard but how do you leave someone and keep your sanity at the same time?
As women, it’s easy to get so wrapped up in raising kids, supporting our husbands, and running our homes-not to mention our careers outside the home! So many of us feel like we don’t even know who we are anymore!  We get bored with the monotony of our lives and start to wonder what else is out there for us. We start to crave excitement and adventure. We wonder what life might have been like if we had stayed single or married someone else.

Changing how you respond involves taking a step back, and carefully considering what to say and do. I found it helpful to talk to a counselor, because I didn’t know what my “triggers” where, and how my behavior affected my husband. If you need help with your marriage, I encourage you to talk to a counselor, and get an objective and balanced perspective.


“I want out of my marriage and can’t figure out why I can’t just be happy with this great guy,” says Donna on How to Live With a Husband You Wish You Never Married. “My relationship is safe and comfortable; he’s my best friend. But at what point is he supposed to move beyond my best friend and be my partner? I’m not sure we’ve ever had that connection that seems so vital to me. He disagrees. It would almost be easier if I had tangible reasons for wanting to leave (abuse, anger, neglect). All I have is saying that I’m just unhappy even though he’s a great guy. He doesn’t take care of himself like I wish he would, but he’s still a good husband. I feel like such a failure because I can’t just be happy with what I have.”

Funny that I had the same question and my name is Katie. But I refuse to accept the answer. My boyfriend and I are a perfect match. But just because he has a diagnosed mood disorder, I should drop him? No. That is selfish. After being with my boyfriend for 3+ years, he gone from constantly miserable to having the occassional cruddy day. He saw how his behavoir affected me, yet I didn’t just leave. Now he tries to better himself and fight through his bipolar and depression because he hates hurting people. Especially me.
This same approach should be applied to the other things he does that may bother you from time to time. Don't get hung up about things, and if he does something that you really dislike, just let him know. Holding on to little things and petty grudges is not a good idea for you or your husband. Many of the little annoyances you may have you will forget about in a few weeks anyway, so it is not worth it to get upset over them.
I’ve forgiven him. I brought dysfunction in to this marriage also (codependency). I spent over 13years trying to change him (there’s the codep. in me lol) He’s a product of his childhood as am I. But that doesn’t make it hurt any less and doesn’t mean we have to stay in the marriage. I’m no longer angry or hurt. Nor do I feel shame or guilt for how I feel towards him now. Mentally I’ve made peace with what’s happened. I taught him how to treat me and I enabled him. But there’s simply been too much damage. I have no desire to even think about liking him. I’m investing all my energy on my recovery and attempting to help my 12yr old son learn healthy ways to deal with his negative emotions. I’ve got a long way to go. I continue to tell myself “progress not perfection”
The language of love consists of tender words, touches, hugs, and kisses. When we call a partner things like “sweetheart,” “darling,” or “dear,” we create a special intimate atmosphere. The choice of affectionate names occurs unconsciously and shows how one partner relates to the other, who dominates the relationship, and how well they are balanced.
I read your article, I understand that no one can tell me when I’ve had enough. But Iam 38 , with 5 kids. I have a 20 year old son who is expecting his 1st, with his gf, I have 13 year old triplet daughters, and a 12 year old son. My husband and I have been married 16 years, he has also been “married ” to the military for 17 years. We are an active duty family. Yes I say we, I’ve watched him pack up for 6 different deployments, some almost broke his soul. Anyway… the loves not there. I reach out to touch him, and he dosent return the favor, we used to snuggle in bed, when one person would move or shift, the other followed, now I usually sleep with a body pillow so I can have comfort. I need help or get sick, I have to do it alone, it was one thing when he couldn’t be here, but now he chooses not to be. He says basically that everything that happens, is my fault. I look at this man, and it’s not just the children I gave him, or saving his life a few times, but everything he took, stole, robbed and broke me of. I try to hold on, part of me dosent want to be in that 78% marriage fail rate, or the fact if we fail, did I f*$k up? But Iam tired. Lonely. Dissapointed. Lost. Hurt and angry. Where did I get so weak. How can I hold on for just a few more years till our kids are out of the house. Any advise would be greatly appreciated.

get out, get out now, while you are still young. I was you 5 years ago. Don’t focus on the little details of why you can’t leave, your mental wellbeing and freedom are worth more. If you cannot find the strength to do so then find a councellor to help you find the strength and clarity you need. They can be pricey, but you would be amazed at what will come your way when you are ready for help. God be with you and be safe.
My patient found herself thinking about detaching from her brother frequently, and in fact would do so for long stretches of time. But then she'd learn he'd locked himself in his house for days and couldn't stop herself from being drawn back into his life. After this last episode, however, she found herself more focused on maintaining a safe emotional distance. She still cared, she confided to me, but had come to a new understanding about her limitations. She knew some part of her brother still wanted to be happy, but it seemed covered up by a part that reveled in misery. She would keep tabs on him, she decided, and intervene when he seemed in real danger, but she refused to continue suffering on account of his suffering. Which for her meant allowing him to suffer alone.

But even if it’s just moodiness, resilience is such a key and under-discussed point for a long-term relationship. Life and relationships aren’t always easy. What’s going to happen in the future when your toddler goes through the Terrible Twos, or money is tight, or someone goes through a rough career transition? While I fully acknowledge some people need space to process stress, but if you’re in a partnership, you can’t just sequester yourself away for a few days and leave your partner possibly high and dry with the mess. If Katie’s boyfriend doesn’t change — and I think she needs to make that assumption, judging from her letter — is this acceptable to her? Only she can make that call, but it sounds like it’s not.


“It may be difficult to face the issues that you and your spouse are struggling with, but research suggests that couples who can manage to stay together usually end up happier down the road than couples who divorce,” writes Dr. Deborah Hecker on Should You Divorce or Save Your Marriage? “If partners choose to invest in their relationship and make needed changes instead of repeating their mistakes, they might be able to avoid an unnecessary divorce. And if they do finally decide to divorce, their personal work in couples therapy might increase their chance of a successful marriage next time.”
When you say your "I dos," you're making each other your top priority above anything and anyone else. When you lose that essential part of your marriage, you can lose the person that once meant the world to you. If you're not making your husband a priority in your life anymore — or if he's not making you his — it's going to be really hard to stay a solid unit. Try going back to prioritizing your time together, each other's feelings, and each other's goals to get back into a healthy place before it's too late.
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