Hi FK, It’s one thing to get married with the expectation that our partner cares about us and our happiness and totally another thing to get married because we DEPEND on them for our feelings of worthiness and happiness. In the first case we are in control of our expectations and boundaries and in the second, we are trying to be in control of our partner. Self reliance requires us to accept responsibility for our own happiness and not hold others accountable for it through abdication. Of course, the concept of “self reliance” and its importance can be up for… Read more »
I am a doer, not a talker, and I will not sit by and be part of a train wreck that I can clearly see, whether it is mental or physical.   If I have a boyfriend who has cancer, and he will not seek help, I will not stand by for X number of months or years in anguish just to go down with him.  If he is going to doctors, getting treatments, I would stand by him and hold his hand on his deathbed.  None of the posters said anything about abandoning anyone.  I would stay with my Asperger man and help him navigate through this, if he wanted the help!  What I will not do is stand there and be collateral damage. 
As a matter of fact he almost has. I mean, read your own words, ” Am just devastated. What is wrong with me? Am I not beautiful enough?”. Self esteem issues dear. Yours is at a dangerously low level and he knows it. He’s using it against you. You need to dump that weasel and start working on your self esteem. Make sure that it doesn’t depend on how other people treat you. Once you achieve that no one will ever play you like this again and get away with it.
“Not every woman will go after a man who “goes to the mountain like a lion” to paraphrase DJ (from another discussion). ” ____________ More importantly, I’m famous! Kidding, and always enjoy reading you, Kal, but I can’t take credit for that. Steve actually coined the mountain lion term. I just took it to extreme. I spent a marriage like yours. It sucked. Steve asked what price we’d pay? I paid a big one, walked away, lost a business, home, everything…but I’m happy now, and what got me through that was the fact that I was confident in myself, that… Read more »
This is probably one of the most obvious statement, but often the hardest to do. If there is something your husband does that drives you crazy, let him know, in a calm matter of fact way. Don't constantly be on his case for something. Especially something he can't immediately change. Nagging causes annoyance. Annoyance eventually causes resentment. Let him know why his actions are making you upset and annoying you. Being clear about what kind of behavior bothers you will help him be more accommodating and conscientious.
I dated this girl once who was very into verbal jousting – you know that thing you do where you tease each other, even nonsensically, before you kiss? The problem was, she liked to keep going and I would have to have a riposte for every cute little jibe. Then she would respond with something else and I would have to have yet another comeback, and it would go on like this. I found the game exhausting, but she got off on it. We didn’t last very long, but I guess she needed to find someone who could “keep up” as Evan puts it.
For a loving man, the requests and wishes of his beloved (not friends or distant relatives) will always take first place. In fact, men like to help women — this gives them the opportunity to demonstrate how cool, strong, and responsible they are. Of course, there are situations when a man cannot help, for example, he does not know how to repair a faucet, but he certainly should not leave you alone to deal with this problem — he will call the plumber, instead. However, if the most innocent request, like asking for help changing a lightbulb, is perceived with annoyance and as just “yet another unbearable task,” the relationship is worth reconsidering. Is it possible that your man is helping some other woman and with greater enthusiasm?
Having a solid communication is the key element of every relationship. Unfortunately, our true communication is often contained in that which is unspoken. We change communication for manipulation. Things like silent treatment or expecting others to read our minds can only be used for the purpose of torturing our partner and ourselves also. We were given words to communicate with, not crystal balls. And when we say something, we should really mean it and stand behind it. There’s no need for nagging. If you are consistent and keep your words and actions in alignment, if you take your own words seriously, that’s the way your husband’s gonna understand them too.
Just adding my 2cents… My 19yr old marriage has had a fork in it for quite some time. I’d gotten to a point of marital ambivalence and realized I was never going to love him and I’d never have the relationship I wanted with him. I was young and insecure when I dove into an extremly verbally and emotionally abusive marriage. I spent over 10yrs meeting his needs and doing what I was told. (take my boots off, get me another plate of food, why can’t you keep this house clean you skanky B…, Your wortless piece of sh**) It was pretty bad for me and the kids. But I believe a person can change if they want to bad enough. And I believe he’s in the process of real and permanent change but I could care less. I checked out emotionally a very long time ago with no desire to check back in. The bullet has left the gun but my finger is still on the trigger.
ive been with my boyfriend for 4 yrs we have a beautiful 1 yr old daughter & well lately he spends all day everyday outside in the garage watching tv & he doesnt care abt spending anytime with me & when I go tell him that its wrong that he is always outside and he doesnt spend no time w/me he tells me I bitch alot he nvr wants to listen to me & tells me to leave…& when I ask him if he’s tired of me & he says yes idk wat to do anymore ;(
On the issue of why did it took so long.  One possibility could be that he has a one dimensional sense of humor.  I have a friend that I thought was hilarious when I first met him.  But over time I noticed it was the same jokes over and over again.  It started to become predictable and not so funny.  I guess it would kind of be like dating a guy that never graduated potty jokes.  Might be funny at first but starts getting old after a while.
Thanks for the kind words… but I really don’t  think this is the issue I’m talking about. I’m talking about performing  “being a socially skilled person”, and how dependent this performance really is on external validation, and the decisions of others going your way. The fact is, we hold ourselves responsible for others’ feelings and reactions… something we really have no control over. Part of why we do this is surely the service industry: everyone in customer service gets the message early that customers’ negative feelings are always our fault. But we also have an overarching narrative about personal responsibility… Read more »

Before I go any further, allow me to acknowledge a few things: unhappy and moody are not exactly the same. “Moody” sounds temporary, where “unhappy” is chronic. Then again, if your boyfriend consistently finds himself in a bad mood, I’m not sure how different it is from being unhappy. If it sounds like I’m familiar with the condition, it’s because, from 20-30 years old, I was always somewhere between unhappy/moody/anxious. I dated a LOT in that time and while there were many stretches where I could get by on charm, I could never mask my perpetual dissatisfaction with my career. Women would take a chance on me, but either I was a total downer or I was so unhappy that I’d choose an unsuitable woman just because she was there. Both are recipes for failed relationships.

It takes patience to develop a strong relationship, and if you pressure your boyfriend to move in together or get engaged, chances are he will feel like you’re forcing him. It’s best to let things happen naturally and realize that if you get along, that’s all that matters and if you don’t get along, moving in together isn’t going to solve that problem.
Sure, it would be nice every once in a while, but realize that men are wired differently than us. What we are thinking in our head that he should do is almost always not what he is going to do. Realize that all those romantic movies are most likely written by women. Don't let your expectations exceed your reality because you've been watching too many romantic comedies and reading too many books.
I understand where your at, Im in the same situation. Ive been with my boyfriend for 3 yrs now and we have a 1 year old. He tells me he doesnt want us anymore. I cant seem to let go nor move on. I keep on trying to make him love me because I dont want to lose the chance at having my kids miss out on a family. I cant seem to make him love me again. I do feel foolish because he doesnt feel any love for us, and thats not enought for me to get up and leave.
But if we all get out of our own egos for a little bit and stop defending our worldviews, I ask you: if you had a choice between a partner who was anxious/moody/depressed and one who wasn’t, why would you choose anxious/moody/depressed? When I was feeling that way, believe me, I felt chagrined when women would pull away from me. But now that I’m on the other side, I can completely understand why they did.

Also sometimes I just want to go out with some girl friends but my hubby gets up set than its transfer to me so I don’t go. He tells me after the big face go but tell your mom to baby sit cuz am not, I tell him go out you too but since he doesn’t have much friends other than his family he expects me to stay home too. If I go do my hair, nails ect it’s like how long, what Are we going to ect. I don everything other than fixing the house that’s all him but anything else pay bills, look for work estimates, buying things ect all me. He just works really hard at work n home but never any time for us alone or for me sometimes I just want to run. I currently work and go to school for psychology which am treating myself first. I just feel like there’s no me time I never get a break. And when he tells me ok let’s go out I just don’t feel like it. I don’t feel attracted to him, I feel like I am missing out on things and am not one to regret because I love my kids and will do that all over again but at the same time I feel like I had to child hood myself having my daughter at 16 and being with my hubby since 14 but married 3 yr’s ago.

For the next 6 years or so after that, I believe we are doing great. I do notice that he is grumpy and has low energy, etc. So I recommend he get his testosterone checked and get evaluated for clinical depression. He goes for hormones, but no antidepressants. It helps for a while, but 2012 is just a bad year for him it seems. He's getting drunk and staying out more, sometimes not coming home. Getting botox for forehead wrinkles. Worried about thinning hair. I beg him to please seek out further help to no avail.
Jackie H – When I start having to make a pros and cons list, I know it’s time to go.  Once I start dissecting a man in that way, I’ve already lost respect to the point that I can pick him apart like nobody’s business and I already know that the cons list will be long.  Why even bother?  Additionally, I think that, unless the writer is experiencing some other issue, why is she even bringing up, “He’s not funny”?  If they have a good comfort level with each other, that’s what really matters.  It’s seems a mute point to attack him for being not funny enough at this point in the relationship, and imho, like she’s ‘looking” for a reason to leave.  Funny “enough” is one of those things you look at up front, during the dating phase, and if she thought he was funny enough up front, why is she dissecting him like this now.  This says to me there is a larger problem which has nothing to do with “funny” enough. What she’s really saying is that he’s not “enough” of something else….  I like funny but life, in an of itself, is serious business.  And if he is taking care of business, why even go there?  If “is he funny enough” a serious consideration, then no wonder I have such a hard time dating.  Maybe I’m just taking the wrong stuff into consideration.  But hey, if I’m going for really funny, then just give me the best looking guy in the room too!  Geez, at this point, I’d take cute, kind, attentive and caring, a decent job, no big baggage, and someone who actually wants to get to know me with enough chemistry to make some smoldering happen.  That apparently is far too much to ask these days.  If I want some funny, I’ll YouTube my favorite old Eddie Izzard skits. 
Have you thought about individual or couples counseling? Even if your husband refuses to go, it’s a great way for you to figure out what you should do and if you can help him see how serious your marriage issues are right now. Talking to a counselor — even without your husband present — can be a great way to see things clearly and objectively. Which, in turn, can help you decide whether your marriage is over or just going through a rough stage.

I don’t know if anyone will read this but I feel so alone the last 2 weeks that this is the best I can do. My first serious relationship ended a week and a half ago. The man I first moved in with, first went on vacations with, got a cat with, and planned my life with. There were no real indications that this was coming, we had been slightly more distant the last two months but we were both very stressed by out individual troubles so I didn’t think much of it. I came home one evening to my boyfriend telling me it was over. My entire world that I had just built on my own was shattered. I had a home I loved in a town I loved, I had my own cat, my new second family, my boyfriend, and I was finally starting school. And it was all gone because he decided he didn’t want me anymore. He didn’t think we were right for each other in the long run. But I did. I so saw my life with this man and he didn’t see it back.. I am completely grief stricken and I can barely bring myself to do the things I have to do. I struggle so much with getting through the day and I’m embarrassed of my inability to “fake it till I make it”. I feel like my sadness is a burden to others and that I’m just negative to be around. But I can’t hide how utterly distraught I am. I wish I could start feeling better, but I just cant. My brain always reverts back to our love and what I can’t have anymore. I wish and dream that he will take me back and that makes me even more embarrassed. I wish I could just accept that we can never be together and just move on. But I miss him so much.

As completely freaked out and scared as I was, I immediately began talking to a few close women friends. I opened a bank account in my own name and had all of my pay checks deposited there and I made arrangements for my daughter and I to stay with a friend for a few weeks while I looked for place to live. I live in a city that is one of the most expensive places in the world so was very concerned I would not be able to afford an apartment for my daughter and I, but eventually got something but every year I am confronted with rent increases and increasing utility bills – so, the current sitation is not sustainable. I asked for and got a promotion at work. I applied for government help as a single parent and get a little bit every two weeks.
You gravitate towards people and things that make you the most happy. When your husband chooses to spend more time with his friends, working on his car, or doing some other activity than with you, it might signal that he is unhappy with you for some reason. He may be upset with you for some reason and isn’t talking to you about it because he doesn’t want to deal with the argument that will result from it.
During that time I suspected many times that he was also seeing other women. I found snippits of evidence and I almost left him a few times but he always had an explanation for what I’d found and swore he was telling the truth. He would even get angry that I would accuse him. I told myself that even if there was no proof, next time there was even a whisper of something dodgy I would leave. Everything seemed ok for a couple of years so we got married. I thought I would be more secure with him once we got married, and then we had a baby and I started to feel even more like things were going right … until that familiar feeling that something was wrong returned … followed by a new secret password on his computer and a constantly locked shed. I KNEW something was wrong but I couldn’t find any evidence. When I demanded him to unlock the shed or remove the password he got furious and said that I was in the wrong to snoop. I remembered my vow to myself but now I had a son to think about.
My husband is a really great guy and father, unless your married to him. Friends, family members, hell, the person down the street gets more priority in the line of importance than I do. We have never been on a honeymoon, or go out of town together. I can count the number of times we have gone out to eat together on one hand, and that includes before our son was born. He is now 5. I have come to the conclusion that he must be embarressed to be seen with me or something. I have stayed married for our son, but I have finally decided that I am finished. I am going to file for legal seperation next month and move on with my life. I am pretty sure that there is someone out there who may actually aknowlege that I exist. If not, I would rather be lonely by myself, than be lonely with my husband sitting next to me.
What did I do? Looking back, I admit that I did some crazy shit. And it is shit. Why did I ever think that punishing my husband by turning away from him and harboring resentments would EVER get me what I wanted? How could I possibly think that punishing him and withdrawing from him would magically give me more love, attention, praise, and affection? It’s nuts. It’s self-sabotage.

There are some people (often mathematicians), who I say something to, and I think, “Oh my gosh, that HAS to make you laugh or at least smile”, and it doesn’t. That instantly creates a ton of distance. Not only could I not date such people, but I couldn’t be close friends and I don’t feel particularly comfortable in their presence, because were not “on the same wavelength.”

If leaving is not an option because of your pregnancy or beliefs, then you need to figure out how to be happy in your marriage situation. I guess that means not expecting your husband’s family to change, and deciding that you want to stay married and raise your children in his parents’ home. If you can’t leave, and you can’t change your husband or his family, then you need to change yourself so you can be happy.
We have been married for 10 years. we dated for a year, I am in second marraige, he has had four, which I found out by suprise in this past year. 4 months after we were married I was shocked to find out he had accepted over 100,000 a bills from his ex wife who had kicked him out and he was still paying her credit cards for 8 years. I was livid. Needless to say the trust was broken right away and our life became very difficult. My husband is great with words of agreement, but breaks any agreements we make. If the temperature get a little “hot” in the house the agreement is gone or he “doen’t remember.” We have not had sex for almost 3 years. He is one to try for a few times and if it doesn’t work…he’s gone. He spends ,most of his time in his office upstairs. We are older, 59 and 75, I detest being around him. He is retired and the economy does not afford a job for someone my age who cannnot be on their feet all day. We watched the movie fireproof separtely and he tried for 3-4 times and when it did not go his way he retreated. I have been in counseling for years and when suggested for us both to go he decided to go to his own counselor…alone. No suprise. He lives vicariously through me, has no hobbies, friends, interests and quite frankly I have exhausted my efforts, marraige suggested readings etc. He takes no accountability for his neglect or “conditional” effort. He will not read a book because he had to read a lot 40 years ago. the front of “looking good” has become weary and I have become very angry and short fused. I believe the marraige is over, we cannot afford to split. What to do… He is helpful if I ask him and remind him and remind him again. He is responsible with payments and watches tv and surfs the net. He has needed a hearing aid for 7 years and will not get one, (too stubborn)that has been very difficult. His mom passed last year and for te yeas she was here in the city. She was his priority and that was made very clear. we have no birthday, anniversary celebrations, get aways. We can’tbe in a car together or there is complete silence. He has and has not had dreams, goals for our future since I met him. He just said what was neeed for me to hear and it was much mistruth. Looking for counsel.
Why is it that in the beginning, we don’t get bothered that much about things that later in marriage drive as crazy? If you think it’s because back then you were unrealistically in love, then remember, how many times did you hear people who lost someone saying how they would give anything to be around things that once were so annoying to them. What is that telling you?

He claims with the first woman it was a mistake. The following day of the incident the woman told him she just needs emotional support and nothing more.and so he continued only texting her. But the girl has told me he n she met.most times at night at her home.i dont know who to believe anymore after he has lied so many times.he claims he dint intend to do it.it just happend. And with the rest of the times he got used to texting girls.
My husband is the quiet reserved type – one of the things that initially attracted me to him almost 19 years ago. however, looking back now he has always remained detached from me throughout our marriage – we have a wonderful family of 5 children and for the past four years have become so distant from each other that we dont even talk. There is no arguing, so the kids dont see verbal violence, but they are not silly – they know there is a cold war raging in our home.

Three years ago, when my daughter was around 7 months old, I felt like I was having an identity crisis. I was on summer vacation from work, and I spent each day caring for our daughter all day. On top of that, I had volunteered to babysit a younger cousin of mine and have him spend the summer with us so that he could go to summer camp during the day and get tutoring from me in the evenings. After a while, each day felt the same-breastfeeding, cooking, cleaning, tutoring. I felt like all I was doing was making everyone else’s life easier, while losing a part of myself in the process.
Then have a conversation with them (use an appropriate method for their communication style to improve your rate of successfully achieving good reach/affect) stating what you believe their needs to be and how you attempt to meet those and that you'd appreciate their attempts to clarify their needs so that you can do a better job, and that in light of your requests you would to clarify what you really want out of this relationship. Proceed to detail what you want. Try to be really practical with examples rather than vague ideas.
I am recently going through some trying things in my marriage. My husband is always accusing me of cheating. He is never satisfied with anything that I do for him. He says that I’m irresponsible and that I only think of myself. I have really taken on a lot since we got married. We have only been married for two months and it already feels like our relationship is over. He has two children outside our marriage and he is on probation. Therefore, his problems are my problems. I took on that responsibility with no appreciation. I feel so alone in our home. We argue constantly about the same thing. It never ends. I recommended that we do marriage counseling but he refused and said that I am the only one with the problem, that I need counseling. I have never cheated on my husband. Anything he needs me to do I do it. I mean, I didn’t marry because it was something to do. I married my husband because I love him and I thought that he loved me. Moreover, I felt that we were connected and that we would be happy together. I guess he is just not happy with me or maybe he’s just not happy with himself. He told me yesterday that he would be better off with his ex-girlfriend. Then he threatened to call her to come to our house (For his sake and hers–not a bright idea.) What can I do to fix this? I have prayed countless time but it seems like God is not listening. Did I marry the wrong man or could we make this work? Is my marriage over?
Hello! My husband and I will be married 18 years in May. I can honestly say that I don’t know if our marriage has ever been ideal, or a good marriage. My husband will admit that he is a very selfish person, as I know many men/women will say this, he will also tell you he has addictive behaviors, no drugs or alcohol,but gambling, and video games are his addictions. Our marriage,to me and some who are around us, will say is based solely on what my husbands wants/needs are. I have never been the first priority in his life, in my opinion. Example: When I was pregnant with our eldest child, I was working 12 hour days. He was home for a couple of weeks because his back was injured,but was medicated and fully capable. I came home from work with feet swollen and exhausted, and I just wanted to soak my feet. I walk in the door, and he comes out of his “man Cave” and asks me what is for dinner. I got a can of soup out slammed it on the counter and said there you go, and went for a walk. No he didn’t come after me. I was so angry that when I went back in the house I went to bed. He holed himself in his video games then and is still to this day. There are so many other times/examples of basically the same thing. We aren’t, and really have never had a truly intimate relationship…to me it seems like a chore to him. He freely admits this. At one time, about 10 yrs. ago he told me he didn’t find me attractive anymore because I was to fat. (I have now lost 50 lbs. and weigh just slightly more than I did in high school which was 154, that truly has no bearing on the situation in my opinion) It is not for lack of trying on my part, I have gone so far as texting things to him. I have been pushed away, he says the kids are home I don’t want them hearing, and many other reasons. I have thought, is he cheating, and even most recently is he not interested at all. He is now overweight, takes high blood pressure meds, and says he has no self confidence. He is not an active participant/husband but rather to me, it seems like I have another child. I have to ask him to help around the house, while he plays his video games usually 5-6 hours a night(this is an every day,every year occurrence) He is depressed, gambled a lot of money away that we don’t have, lost his father, and in my opinion, he feels he lost his mother as well. His mother has been a mother who loves him, but didn’t raise him to be a man/husband. She did everything for him, I just took over when we married. At counseling I brought up that he smokes in the house when I leave when I have asked him not to. The counselor asked him why he does this, is it like “mom” says don’t do it, so you do it anyway? he said yes. He told her the children don’t listen to me, and she said you don’t listen to her so why should they. You don’t think they children listen to her, but actions speak louder than words. Our children our great children, have very busy lives, and our great students…but they will tell you that there mother is not happy and they don’t like it. When he gambled I am the one who found ways to pay the debt, not him. He owns the fact that he gambled but has done nothing to render the situation. I feel instead of playing games for 5-6 hours, he should get another job to pay for it. When I say I have a husband who is more like a 44 year old child I truly mean it. I do everything from paying the bills to deciding what to have for dinner. He tells me he loves me, and I don’t doubt it. I think his love for me is in a motherly way and not a wifely way. He says my expectations are to high for him. The counselor said to him, you are just a big kid aren’t you…laughing he said yes…she said I think you need to think about what I just said. Your wife wants a husband and a partner, to be a couple, not a 44 yr. old child. My expectations are this..Be my husband, my partner, my co parent, my friend, something other than what he is and has been for a very long time.
One way to distinguish between a run-of-the-mill marital rut (where you've, say, fallen into boring routines and don't have much sex anymore) and a loveless marriage is to ask yourself how long the situation has been this way, and whether it's been steadily worsening. "Most couples go through rough times, but if the difficulties last more than two years, with no sign of relief, I'd recommend seeking professional help," says Gadoua. And sooner is always better to avoid passing the point of no return. "It would be ideal if we could tune into our longings and needs well before we get to the point that the love we once had is dead," says Cole, who notes that the average couple waits six years from the time they recognize relationship problems until the time they try therapy. By then, it's often too late — the problems in the marriage can corrode it to the point where it may be unsalvageable. So play it safe and consider scheduling a therapy session if you're struggling.
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