Women, who are in the relationship, often think that a man must always try and take care of her and whatever she does, it should be the sheer happiness for him. She can dramatize and cry, and he should abstain and endure all. Maybe some people forget that just being in a relationship means reciprocity, compromise, and care. What's more, men, just like women, can also have worse times or bad humor. In addition, most men have a lot of responsibilities, which can also overwhelm them and affect their behavior.
"In my job as a divorce mediator, often a spouse wants to tell me the whole backstory to their divorce. But I can tell you what really happened — in every divorce, someone (but usually both people) feels dismissed, discounted, disrespected, or devalued. These are major indicators of unhappiness." —Elinor Robin, PhD, Divorce Mediator with A Friendly Divorce in Gainesville, FL
Recently my husband and I have brought some issues to light. We have been together 13 years, married 12. We were young and I had a 3 mo old daughter when we met. I fell in love with him because of the way he was with her. Recently, in a very relaxed conversation, he reveiled to me that he “thinks this sounds bad” but he believes he fell in love with me becuase of her. I dont have a problem with that. But now he thinks he loves me very much but isnt in love with me anymore. Personally, I dont know the difference. He says he loves me every night before we go to bed, and every morning before he leaves for work, as well as every time we talk on the phone, before he hangs up. And if I say it to him when around the house, he always says it back. He usually kisses me good night and good bye. So I think there is love there, and after so many years of being together you just fall into a rut. But…….. there are problems and I am not sure, when put all together, if I should be worried. He has always had this thing with joining dating sites online. He says he is just looking and that you have to become a memeber to see them. He says he doesnt get attention very often and it’s nice to see if someone responds. That he never returns their messages and would never act upon it. He has acutally kept this very open with me. From the beginning. I truly do understand where he is coming from. In my line of work, I am with guys all the time. So there is attention. I share all these stories with him so that he doesnt think I am hiding anything. I have never done anything inappropriate with anymore, nor have i wanted to. He is the only guy I have wanted in that way since I have been with him. In his line of work, there is no one else to give him this attention. WE all like to feel that we are still desireable and I know how that feeling lacks after being in the same relationship for years. But lately, I have had an issue with it and when I try to talk to him about it, he tells me (now mind you very calmly and never upset with me about it) that he never ever as any intention of acting upon it, it’s just nice to feel like someone is flirting with you. He is a very good looking guy and gets flirted with when we go out but he doesnt notice it. So I really do understand that need and want. Plus he reminds me that we made an agreement in the beginning that if either one of us felt things were moving towards a path that we were going to be unfaithful, then out of respect, we owed it to the other party to tell them beforehand. (He had been cheated on a few times prior to me and it really hurt him) Then I feel bad for bringing it up. But then he points out the fact that I need to start doing my own thing. We have 3 kids and i do absolutely everything for them. They are each very involved in school activities and friends and I never tell them no. So between running them around and my work I feel unappreciated and taken for granted. He says that if I had a few female friends that I could go out with and get away from the house I would feel better. That my life is not the kids and him, that I need time for myself. That i have become bitter and some people that he introduces me to read in my body language that I dont want to be there and so later on he feels embarassed and he apologizes to them for that impression and tells them that I am really not that way, that I am a very nice person, just hard to get to know. He does have a point. I only define myself as his wife and their mother. I have nothing else. And it is my own fault, I have made it that way. He says he thinks I am miserable and just dont know it. I think he has a point. But then here comes the fact that right now, becuase of everythign else, i am dealing with some real insecurity issues. I dont feel any emotion from him lately. I have tried to initiate being intimate these past few nights, with nothing but cuddling from him. I end up crying myself to sleep. I ask, if he really isnt interested and he says he really is just very tired. He recently got promoted at his job, so he leaves at 4:30 in the morning and gets home anywhere from 7:30-11:00 at night. He is exhausted and I can see it, becuase he sits on the couch within the first 5 mins of being home and falls asleep before the kids get a chance to tell him how their day was. He says that I am making a little thing into a big thing lately because I am being so emotional. Which is not like me. We use to joke that we had a really different kind of relationship. We werent really mushy, we joked in what othes would think would be mean ways. We use to tell people we had a love hate relationship. That we love to hate each other, but then we would laugh and he would kiss me and they knew it just worked for us. He had such a hard up bringing that he doesnt get very emotional, it’s almost like a wall. And i was ok with that until recently. It seems like he hasnt changed the way he treats me, but I see it now as a lack of emotion. That I am making subtle hints that I just need him to come up behind me and hug me, just to show me he’s still there, but he doesnt notice this. I want to talk to him but feel like I am beating a dead horse (for lack of a better term). We’ve never really had communication problems so I dont know why it is so difficult for me to talk to him now. I dont knwo why I feel so insecure now. I think if i just felt like i had some reassurance on his part. And when I brought that up the other night, he said, “I come home to year every night. I love you and the kids. I just want you to stop being so derogatory on the outside. Show what’s on the inside.” He even said that maybe he has started to pull away a bit becuase he sometimes doesnt know what kind of mood I am going to be in. and that does push him away sometimes. He does have a point there. He is the kind of guy that is always perkey, the glass is always half full with him. He says things are uncontrolable and you just have to go with the flow. I tease and call him a con artist sometimes, because he always seems to have everyone eating out of the palm of his hands. And I other the other hand, am the pessimistic one. I always prepare for the worse so that I wont be let down. Always been that way. But now it seems to be causing a drift between us. I feel I really need to change this behavior or I will loose him but on the same token, i dont want to feel like I have to change all of me to make him fall in love with me again. I dont feel I am the only one that has things to work on. And when this was all brought up, there was no yelling and he wasnt mean. I was crying, of course, because I didtn know he felt those things, and all I wanted was a hug but that didnt come. A year or two ago I wouldnt have thought anything of it, that’s just him, always has been. But now i feel like I really need the emotion. But it’s not fair to ask him to change. I need to know what I can do to change this, to make my marriage strong again. To make me believe that he still loves me. I want to feel that he isnt just around becuase of the kids, that he wants to be with me. Does it sound like our marriage is over? Does there look like there is any hope? What can I do to help to change things? How can I talk to him without feeling sick to bring it up? How can I get us back to where we were a few years ago? Is there any hope for us? I love him very much and am becoming sick imagining him leaving me. He hasnt said he is or wants to, but from some comments lately, I think he is just content and I want him to be happy. Does that mean I have to let him go?
I’m going to take the assumption that you’re already in a relationship with this man… At which I ask you this: If you have to ask if happiness is possible, haven’t you already answered your own question? I’m not going to say definitively whether or not your happiness is possible with this person, but you have to ask yourself the question of whether or not you’re currently happy. If the answer is no… well… you should probably consider ending things sooner rather than later. You shouldn’t have to change who you are in order to find your happiness. Additionally, who you're with shouldn’t be the source of your happiness, but rather an amplification of it. In order to be truly happy, you must first be happy on your own. Your significant other is NOT a person to fill the void in your life… they’re a person to share your WHOLE life with.
It sounds like your sadness and depression is related to the woman next door — and you need to listen to your heart and gut, and move away. Maybe your husband will go with you and you can rebuild your relationship, or maybe not…but you may be much happier if you’re not living next door to the woman your husband had a physical or emotional affair with.
When someone's no longer taking their relationship seriously, they're more likely to drop all the responsibility that comes with it. So no, you're not crazy for worrying about your partner's sudden lack of accountability. "If your partner starts breaking promises or does not keep their word and does not seem to offer you more than a simple, 'I’m sorry,' this is a sign that they may not be happy in your relationship because they stop caring about how you feel," Rappoport says.
I gave up my whole life -left my job, family and friends to move to another country to be with my husband. So while in his country I was using his laptop and found a few women’s pictures that were very provocative. I managed to get into his email and found many messages he had been commnicating with women before I came. I confronted him and it was the same answer. I, however, forgave him.
Wow. He cheated,not once but twice. We have been married it would have been 6 years 8/25. I do not know for sure what happened except that I went back to school, and could not give the 100% attention I always gave. I do get snappy when I cant meet his needs, he said this was part o it. But I have been a loving and dedicated wife partner for our entire relationship, I always was able to let him know when something bothered me. But he couldent come to me, he sought attention and help from anther, when she rejected him he ran to another to spite her, neither got hurt in the process, just me. He came back 3 times, and left just as fast. Now he asked for a devorce, in a letter, not even face to face. Coward. I deserved better
Background Information – He is ex-military but when we lived in Washington state, he went through some things. I tried to be understanding, even though I didn’t understand. He would sleep all day, play video games all night, and the only interaction we had was fighting over the kids. It came to a head one night and the fighting got a tiny bit physical. I’ve been in an extremely abusive relationship when I was in my early 20’s. I refuse to do it again. I contacted family services on base and we started counseling. It was mandatory for him. I have two teenage daughters from the marriage I was in previously, and my husband and I have a 3 year old son. Counseling was helping some. It was helping us learn how to communicate better. It was helping with exercises to calm down, things like that. He was removed from our house on base the first night and we were only allowed to see each other with military 1st SGT present. He was so angry all the time but I could tell he was trying. As soon as he thought I might leave, he seemed almost panic stricken. Before this, he would not speak to me for weeks as a time. If I tried to hug him, he would pull away from me and say things like he didn’t want to be touched right now. So, we went through the counseling, he got out of the military and we now live in Oklahoma. He has made so much progress but he drinks too much. I’ve tried to talk to him about it when he’s sober. I can almost see the switch flip from okay to better watch out mode. He will get aggressive, pick fights with the kids, be mean to the kids (which makes me feel like a rabid dog), he will be fine one minute and tell us the next to “Get out”. He growls like an animal when he gets this way.
"Sex can be a major source of unhappiness in a marriage. Married folks often make the mistake of having sex only in bed in their bedroom, which turns it into a very routine and monotonous act. They can also often blame each other for being different in bed. But I find that different sexual personalities make the best couples. Instead of getting frustrated, they need to put things in perspective and work together to find a solution that makes them both happy." —Svetlana Kogan, M.D.
Make a list of the positive qualities you have that you are proud of and that he is lucky to have you for. Magazines have encouraged women to compare their looks to other women in a very biased way. If you find yourself asking how you look often, it will come off as desperate. Men love a woman that is confident with who she is naturally, and you have no reason to obsess over how you look.
Be a complete wife. A woman who parties, travels a lot, spends longer time outside her home, spends her weekends at work or on any other activity that takes her away from her home, leaving her family in the hands of friends, maids, neighbors, church members, nannies to take care of her home, is offering her husband up to another woman on a platter of gold. One of these helpers could win your husband's love and you will weep later. Do not unduly trust any woman. Do not give room for any woman to steal your husband from you by cooking his meals. Be the cook! You can't win the heart of your man if you can't win his stomach. If you want to stop your husband from having an affair you have no choice than to become a better cook and let your husband crave for your food always.
I have been wondering too. I like Lia’s take– that we all have senses of humour– just different ones. I get so tired of grade 7 bodily function humour. I like Senfield humour and slapstick. My boyfriend is all about bodily function stuff, and I don’t know what to do. He is awesome in every other way, but he keeps trying to make me laugh with this otber stuff. He was really popular in Middle school and highschool with amunition like making fun of people’s names, and bodily function stuff. It doesn’t offend, just not funny. When Evan said, ” if you think you are funny, maybe you should be with someone who thinks you are…” makes me think that person isn’t me?? I’m not funny myself, but it’s usually been super easy for people to make me laugh. Just not this person😟
At some point in our lives, we have realized that most men lean on a fragile ego. This is what makes them vulnerable to a few words of appreciation. We recommend that use the words of appreciation like thank you when they do anything for you, even the smallest tiniest things. If you want to receive more of that behavior, this is the way! Relationships and affection are part of a healthy lifestyle. You have to express appreciation at all times when that guy who drives you crazy does something for you. Believe it, they will love it.
What is most concerning about your situation is that you report, and even seem to be, feeling depressed. Depression robs people of their energy and hopes, kills their sex lives, and makes them feel hopeless. My suggestion to you is that you seek the help of a psychotherapist so that you can feel better before you make any life altering decisions. I say this because your reaction to your husband may have more to do with depression than anything else. The best way to determine what is bothering you is to seek help. Perhaps you and the therapist can direct you towards anti depressant medication. In any case, you need to feel better and think more clealy before deciding on separation and divorce. You could even talk to your medical doctor, tell him what you are experiencing and he may either put you on anti depressant medications or refer you for psychotherapy.
I don’t know if it’s a sign your marriage is over, for many reasons. First, only you and your spouse can make this decision! Second, some married couples vacation separately and say it’s what keeps their marriage healthy and happy. Third, does your wife even want to vacation with you? Maybe she doesn’t enjoy it either! And fourth, how is your marriage outside of your vacations? If you’re both happy with your relationship all the time except for when you’re on holidays, then maybe it’s just one of those quirky things in your relationship.
You describe a difficult situation. I don't think anyone can CONTROL their emotions but I'm convinced they can INFLUENCE them (by which I mean work to make them more positive—but not by simply deciding to make them more positive). All human beings have executive functions that can, most of the time, mute the effect of negative emotions on behavior (e.g., we can get angry but choose not to yell or hit).
A happy partner will be down to talk about their day, and will be an open book when it comes to sharing their problems. That's why it's not a great sign if your SO is suddenly all clammed up. "If you ask your partner how they are doing and the answer is 'fine,' this may show they are unhappy in the relationship," Hershenson says. "Not wanting to communicate and lack of communication are not good."
I’m glad to see how marriage has evolved. It used to be much more transactional — happening principally to foster economic benefits or social standings or to produce children — but nowadays people typically choose to commit themselves legally to each other for far more noble goals. More and more people marry with the intention of experiencing lasting love and companionship.
I believe you Scott and I’m a woman. Mine won’t take meds or even go for counseling. He has Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder and living with him is a LIVING NIGHTMARE…NOTHING IS EVER GOID ENOUGH OR HIS FAULT…I CANT TAKE IT….AND THIS COMMUNICATING CRAP….YOU CANT COMMUNICATE WITH SOMEONE WHO LIES TO YOU AND THEN TELLS YOU THAT YOU MADE HIM DO IT!! HANG IN THERE AND TAKE HER MONEY AWAY…NO JOB…NO MONEY…SHE HAS TOO MUCH TIME ON HER HANDS!
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 »
You’ve noticed that something doesn’t feel right between you and your husband… He seems different, less present, and maybe doesn’t even seem like the person you married at all these days. Your intuition tells you something is up and you’re realizing that your partner is unhappy. It’s unsettling feeling of course, but once you pinpoint what exactly is bothering him, you’ll be on your way to fixing the problem.
I am a man and have gone through the video game addiciton. I went there to the game as an escape or catharsis from another crisis in my life. We all get into he said she said this and that trying to convince ourselves its the others fault. Look deep within for your own criticism of self as well as your spouse. Own up to how you feel and communicate with him. Stooping low and doing the same thing he is doing your own way is the surest way to ensure failure. I have blown it this way too. Further a word of caution, beware the criticism of others toward your spouse in your external relationships, less they influence the fate of your internal relationship. We all want to bounce our situation off of other Neutral pseduocounselors. Don’t fall into the trap of believing for a second you can provide that objective view for them to evaluate. It doesnt hurt to talk. Just communicate. If it fails at least you have tried.
The imagination of men is scarce and so, instead of listening or reading about stories, they are more receptive to most visual stimuli. This means they tend to distract more easily when they see something they want. If that something is you, those chances of him realizing your beauty and thinking of you are high. Actually, the process of seduction begins since the two of them cross glances and not since the beginning of the conversation. Interesting, right?
The topic of the forum is not to understand why marriaged fall, but to know when they are near the end as is the case with mine. Your comments have some obvious contradictions in them and I would like to point them out. When you forgive someone, that means you move on and do not bring the issue up in the future. If she is trying to get back at me, that means she did not forgive. And you did not read well, I am the one who is willing to forgive, save the marriage and move on. And you also did not read well that I did not have any physical contact with my “affair: who was btw overseas, so yes I cannot stand the fact that she kissed another guy all the while she violently rejects even holding hands with me.
and I so badly want my marriage to work, not just for myself and my wife but my kids as well. My wife had a hard childhood. Her dad left when she was 10 and wasn’t involved in a good way until 8 years ago when his dad died and he told her he wanted to “make-up” for all the old wounds. Around the same time my wife went though depression. There were times she couldn’t get off the easy chair in our living room for days. She went to counciling and did the antidepressant thing and her therapist helped her decide she needed to go back to work. She had been a stay at home mom by her own choice for 12 years. She is a well paid professional in the medical field and was able to find a great, high paying job that she really likes right away. Almost as soon as she went back to work, she started spending more and more time there and with her “new friends” she works with. I have tried to be supportive and have left my job early to pick up the kids so she could stay late, go out with her friends, etc. At the same time she stopped having sex with me. We’ve been intimate maybe 5 times in the last 5 years and up until then had what she described as a great sex life. I’ve tried to find out what she wants or needs but she can’t tell me other then “not me”. Last week she told me that she is unhappy and that “part of me wants to stay and work things out, part of me doesn’t”. I asked her to read Mort Fertel’s book and do “Marriage Fittness” with me and she has read the first couple chapters but isn’t really committed. Our house has become quite messy due to her being unwilling to clean or cook dinner and she asked me to help get things more orginized and we have started that. The problem is she hasn’t changed any of her behaviors and comes home and just goes into a shell and finds ways to get me upset. Then she says something like “Well, that attitude just makes me want to read that book and work on things sooo much”! She only talks about her work and her friends from work and when I try to talk about anything else she withdraws and is uninterested. It’s been 8 years of her being withdrawn from me and 5+ without sex or affection. Now that I know she actually is at the point that she wants to end our marriage as much or more then save it, I’m having trouble being patient. She has totally ruled out going to councilling or therapy (it doesn’t work and is a waste of time and money) and while she agreed to “read” Mort’s book she hasn’t agreed to do anything and when I asked her what she thought of the part she has read she said “Well, I guess I can see what he’s talking about…” which isn’t making me think she will do anything but read the book. While for the last 15 + years I was the sole income earner, right now I’m not making any money due to the firm I was with closing after 9 years there. I’m working with a start-up and I hope that I’ll be making just as much or more then I had been and she does and we have savings so money isn’t yet a big problem but she is worried about it and I know she doesn’t like making the money. When I asked her what she needs she has said the biggest thing is she wants to move from our house to a better, bigger one so she probably feels that because I’m not yet making the money I had been that will be delayed but again, (It’s only been about 4 months since I lost my old job) she doesn’t have a reason to doubt I will be back to making good money again soon. I’m starting to feel “Why should I go into debt for 30 years with someone who isn’t going to even try to fix our marriage. There’s more of a chance that all that will happen is I’ll lose everything in a divorce”. I don’t know what to say when I’m told how wonderful I am and how it would be easier if I was an awful husband, father, etc. I feel so damn helpless and I know that sooner rather then later I’m going to hit a point where I can’t take it any more. I really am afraid that the woman who said before we got married “I don’t believe in divorce. When I get married it’s forever and will work to fix any problems to see to it”! is going to leave and destroy my family. I would appriciate any help you can give. Thank you.
Ashley, I’m going through a similar situation. Two weeks ago my boyfriend of 6 years broke up with me over Facebook messenger while I was at work. I went out to my car on my lunch break to call him and he said he wasn’t happy anymore and doesn’t know what he wants. It completely came out of nowhere. The last couple of weeks he seemed distance but I didn’t think much of it. I never saw it coming. We’ve been through so much together and his family and I were very close. I think about him everyday and have nightmares about him being with someone else. Everyone keeps telling me that he wasn’t right for me and I’ll find someone else but I don’t want anyone else. My heart hurts so much. I can’t seem to wrap my head around the fact it’s over. Someone who I thought I trusted and told everything to is gone just like that. My chest hurts I wish I could sleep away the pain.
In fact, when you cry, the only thing a man wants to do is run away and not see it. But if he loves you, he will pull himself together and do everything he can to try to comfort you even if the reason you’re crying seems trivial to him. He will calm down only when you start smiling again. However, if he doesn’t love you, then your tears will be just one more reason to get angry at you.
Unlike the previous signs, this one is a bit more subtle, but if you find that your relationship has seemed to stall out, Salkin recommends taking a close look at why that may be. According to her, relationships should progress at a natural pace, going from usual romantic dates to slowly meeting friends and families and going on vacations together. She warns if this isn’t happening, “it's likely that someone is not happy in the relationship, which is preventing it from growing, and that person has some reason they are holding back from allowing it to grow.”
So maybe he doesn't make the bed or fold the laundry perfectly. "Allow him to make mistakes," stresses Weks. "Don't point them all out. Don't direct, control, or warn him. Certainly don't blame him. He is very sensitive and reads into anything that you say which can be read as blaming, causing him to feel less valued. All of these things over time will wear him down, and his feelings toward you will be the first to go."