If you've given up fighting, but feel further away than ever, it's a sign that you've reached a crossroads. "If there's a fight and the couple doesn't talk about what happened, or becomes gridlocked in their position and refuses to listen to their partner's perspective, that's not good," says Cole. However, you might still be able to turn it around. "Unresolved conflict can fool us into thinking that our love is lost, when it's actually only buried beneath the ashes of smoldering resentment and anger," says Turndorf. In other words, the love could still be there, but you just can't access it. To get back in touch with those feelings, turn toward your partner emotionally —which creates closeness and connection—rather than ignoring them or responding negatively, which creates distance and disengagement. "Fights can lead to greater intimacy if the couple processes the fight and repairs the relationship," says Cole. It's up to you to decide whether you've got it in you to turn toward your husband and give it one last go, or whether you've maxed out your ability to keep fighting for your relationship.
So, you need to figure out if you’re just going through the normal ups and downs of marriage…or if you’re truly not in love with him. How do you do that? You could try individual counseling, couples therapy, or even Mort Fertel’s “alternative to therapy” (a friend of mine LOVES how Fertel coaches marriages — his ad is at the end of my article above).
You mentioned someone going through a period of suffering in their life that they need time to get through (so this suffering is not permanent) and individuals who might have frequent dips in mood. I have a question about individuals who have a condition they have been affected by for a long time and will probably stay with them for the rest of their life. My mother has had what appears to me to be borderline personality disorder and/or bipolar disorder for the past 23 years since I was born. How much responsibility is placed on the person for their behavior who has difficulty controlling their moods? My mother can obviously control her behavior around strangers (maybe she is around strangers in times of better mood), but I see her take out her emotions, problems, aggressions in private on her caregivers (my grandfather and grandmother). She is not able to take responsibility for her actions at all and is not expected to by her caregivers. Is this appropriate? Is it appropriate to forgive her behavior in every instance? Or to hold her accountable for her actions? Should her rude behavior, explosive emotions, inability to listen be excused as something she has no control over? Or should the person be held accountable for certain aspects of her behavior? This is difficult for me to deal with because my emotions in response to her behavior when I am around her get discounted by my grandparents because they use the model where she "is not able to control herself at all so she must be forgiven in all circumstances". Is this model of forgiving every circumstance appropriate? Thank your for your response.
I used to like having sex with him but I used to initiate it always. From last month I have lost complete interest in sex. I don’t enjoy it. My day starts with sadness and I even wake up in the middle of the night and I keep regreting my decision of marrying him. I am in a depressed state because I am losing interest in almost every aspect of life. I love kids but I don’t want them to be like him or like his family members. I don’t like his personality, his smile, his way of holding me. I don’t hate him but at the same time I have stopped loving him.
Try to determine the cause of your boyfriend’s mood. Ask him if he had a bad day at work, a fight with a friend or if he lost something important to him. Learning the cause behind his mood is the first step to dealing with it. Don’t be offended if he doesn’t want to talk. He may not answer, but just asking shows him that you care and gives him an invitation to talk when he’s ready.
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"A change in habits is one of the first signs of relationship issues. It can indicate unhappiness, personal stress, even cheating — but it could also indicate a number of other things, so don't jump to conclusions. If there are any significant changes, discuss them with your partner to determine what's behind them." —Sarah E. Clark, licensed marriage and family therapist, relationship expert, and co-founder of Idealationship
Married for 45 years, husband cheated with same woman for 16 years. Been to counselling, numerous chats, still together, but a lot of joy has gone out of my life. He is still working long hours, and now working away overnight 2 nights/3 days a week and I am home, with arthritis, dwelling sometimes on the deceit and lies I have encountered over the years, with him messing with my head making me feel neurotic when I wasn’t. I have lovely holidays, beautiful home, possessions, jewellery etc and I still have this terrible emptiness inside me. We are together because deep down we still love one another and have 50 years together. Sometimes I feel trapped because I couldn’t leave him and be happy at the expense of his unhappiness. He says he is happy but I don’t know if he can be. Any advice.
Maybe you did not understand… My wife is talking to 3 of my ex’s girlfriends and one is when I was in my 20’s… I am 42 now and my wife 39… Why is she talking to them it is immature… I am a liar now and I hear this because of the ex’s and it’s sad for me… I left my wife Dec 2016 and it did hurt a lot cause I did truly love her… I could not deal with the talking about my ex’s each night etc… I was feeling so bad that I had to think about my health first… I am never right she is and nothing I do is ever right… So I had to leave that situation… Why are people this way and it seem like they can’t see it…
Long before my husband left me, I saw the signs my marriage was over. I couldn’t accept it, though. It was overwhelming and depressing even though I know deep in my heart that I’m better off without him. Now that our divorce is final and I am officially single I need to find ways to be happy. How do you be happy after a divorce, when you’re single and you’d rather be married?
I don't think that you're suggestions are going to be too popular....we have a throw away society. Anything that doesn't fit or work as expected is junked right away and replaced, relationships included. And taking kids into account? Forget about it! It seems like they are the very last ones to be thought of by a party seeking divorce, thought that could only just that, a seeming. People in our culture are taught to be very self-centered now-a-days, that ones personal happiness is all that counts.
Inevitably, there will be bumpy times in your relationship. If it has come to a point that you're not sure where to turn, try your hardest to make things right. This doesn't mean endlessly talk about what you should be doing, do it! Schedule the counseling session. If you truly love your husband and want to make things right, don't always expect him to make the first step.
Last night we went out and really didn’t drink much at all. I was clear and sober through the entire night, and I thought he was too. We went to a couple of bars, had one drink at each, and moved on. When we got to the last one, my husband decided that we should have a shot of something, but I am not sure what it was, I was busy loading the jutebox with Christmas music. After the shot, I got a mild buzz, so I figured he did too. We left the bar and walked toward home. On the way home, it happened again. He started screaming at me about something having to do with my son and I walked away. I had no interest in another fight. He yelled at me to get out of his house and that I was not taking my son. I yelled back at him not to worry, I would and as he has no rights to my child, I would be taking him with me. My son, by the way, was at hhis grandmothers house, where he goes every Thursday and every other weekend for visitation with his grandparents and his father. My husband ran up behind me, grabbed me by my hair, and dragged me about a half a block back, telling me that I was not going back to the house, I was not welcome. He did this twice. Being that I was now in pain, I screamed for help both times, to which he replied that there was noone to help me. I called his sister, whose house it is that we lived at. By this point I was hysterical. When he realized who I called, he cussed at me and stormed off toward the house. I started walking the other direction, with the idea in my head that I would walk the 15 miles it was to my son’s grandmother’s house and sleep in the boat she has on the lawn. My sister-in-law came and picked me up, taking me back to her house. She told me to go to bed and lock the door, he would sleep on the couch. Now it is morning, he is alseep on the couch, and I am still angry that he had the nerve to threaten my relationship with my child. I am also a little scared, he had never put his hands on me before. I don’t know what to do. Any help would be appreciated.
There have been times that I have just cried while we were having sex because I felt cheap. It seemed like I felt guilty, almost like cheating on myself. I hope that makes sense. Then last night, I just felt nothing during sex. I can’t make myself get into it. I did that for awhile, I was able to make myself get into the physical part of it, but I can’t do the staring longingly thing anymore. I don’t feel it anymore.
I have a moody boyfriend, and it seems that just about anything negative that happens in his life can get him in a bad mood. He doesn’t get mean, or anything scary. He just backs away, and stays there, sometimes for days. Sometimes I just ignore it, go about my business, and wait for him to re-emerge. But other times, it affects me negatively, like when we have plans and he now “doesn’t feel up to it”.
If you are going to be a big enough idiot that you are going to deny your reality and not seek the help you need, I am not going to be a big enough idiot to go down in flames with you. Doesn’t matter if it is mental illness, addictions, or cancer. I know that may sound harsh, but again, I will not sacrifice my life for someone who will not help themselves. This is the only life I have!
So I’ve been married since July 2010. Ever since i have been so unhappy. I tried being the “perfect” wife in the beginning & then soon realized I was taking care of EVERYTHING; my husband, the dog, our car, the house, finances, even doing the “man chores”. I started getting tired and am never feeling appreciated. During the holiday’s it is a pain to get him to celebrate or be romantic in any way. He never does anything out-of-the-blue for me and I am still stuck picking up after him and doing favors for him, but he never is returning it. We have been in multiple areguments about this & he says he understands & is sorry, but never shows it. He sometimes will do a favor now, but i get so annoyed & don’t even want to ask anymore because he’ll do it half ass and take the easy way, so i end up having to go back & do it anyways… PLUS he doesn’t even know how to fix or build things. I am always fixing our car, hammering down wall mounts & pictures, messing around in the yard, etc, etc…
Have you ever been spoken down to? How does it feel? Not good, right? If you think you are the smartest person since Einstein, and insult your boyfriend’s intelligence on a regular basis, even if it’s in a playful way, it really won’t make him happy. Often that is just our ego barking, needing to validate itself as being so great, but it actually makes us look arrogant and isolates us from people.
"Children add a lot of positives to a person's life, but they can also add a lot stress, including decreased intimacy in the relationship. When children come first, the loss of the marital relationship can be very painful. It isn't easy to maintain that happy physical and emotional connection to your partner when there are baths needing to happen, meals needing to be cooked, and toys needing to be picked up." —Hershenson
This one works best if you can think of no way that your own upbringing contributes to the current marital difficulties. Men love to be the sole screwup in the relationship. It really lights a fire under them to change. If you want to be even more effective, compare him directly to whichever of his parents you find the most dysfunctional. Even better if you know this is the parent with whom he has the most difficult relationship currently. By tomorrow you should have a dozen roses and a poem.
"If your partner is nitpicky and cranky at the smallest thing, they are likely unhappy and often not saying anything directly," Carlyle Jansen, author of Sex Yourself: The Woman’s Guide to Mastering Masturbation and Achieving Powerful Orgasms , tells Bustle. "It could also be a more general unhappiness or work dissatisfaction, but I find that if someone is more cranky about the partner's behavior than other life circumstances, that is a good indication of them being unhappy in the relationship." Whether they're taking general life unpleasantness out on you or they're actually miserable in the relationship, this requires a check-in before things spiral out of control.
Encourage him to share his feelings with you if he tells you there isn't a problem with the relationship. Tell him what you've noticed in his behavior and ask what might be going on in his life you can help him with. If he has any issues and decides to be open about them, this will help ease your mind that the issues aren't with your relationship. All that will be left after that is to give him the space he needs to work through his issues and help him when he needs you.
Have you been feeling your partner slowly or suddenly pulling away? In an interview with Bustle, Cecil Carter, CEO of dating app Lov says this is a hint that your partner has become unhappy in the relationship. It’s important when you feel them pulling back to have a conversation about what is happening to learn if its a problem in the relationship or external factors that having nothing to do with you. By having the conversation early, you can hopefully address any of the problems that are making your partner want to pull away, or just give them the space they need to come back on their own.
In our 13 years of marriage, my husband has had 6 jobs - I think he is always searching for something and simply not finding it. We've also literally travelled the world. (Which was his goal.) Recently, in the last few months, he lamented that we traveled as much as we did because we don't have anything to show for it, and here we are still renting and not owning a house. He is frustrated we spent the money on the travels, rather than buying a house.
Great article Steve, one of the best I have read so far on GMP. It applies to more than just marriages, it includes all depending on others for happiness. One of the consequences that can flow from going the change route to be responsible for your own happiness is that it can mean the end of your relationship which may have been a reality regardless. To minimise the risk of this you need to consider how you will effectively communicate your change needs with your partner and be prepared for negotiation around a win win solution. This also might require… Read more »
My husband and I have been together for almost four years and I think he's pretty amazing. He works hard, he's thoughtful, and he's the absolute best at making me laugh when I'm feeling down. I'll admit, though, that I'm not always the best at reminding him of these things. I am, however, really good at reminding him of many other things — like how he forgot to take out the trash again, or that the way he loads the dishwasher isn't as efficient as the way I do it. I get it, and I'm trying my best to be less of a critic.