Don’t fall into the trap of believing you only have two options: staying married and staying unhappy, or getting a divorce and getting happy again. If you’re feeling scared and sad because of these warning signs your marriage is over, then perhaps you’re ready to go beyond that false choice (“Do I divorce so that I can find happiness again, or do I keep the family together and remain unhappy?”).
The same thing can feel completely different depending on our point of view. At the beginning and in the end we are simply much more aware of the blessings we just got, or lost. So, don’t let gifts you have in your hands slip between your fingers. Practice gratefulness and your whole experience of life will change. Appreciate everything good about your partner and make him know that. Nothing makes us more willing to be good than a person who sees us that way.
How offensive that this has become a gender war for the men commenting. You guys are feeling sorry for yourselves? One guy because he cheated and can’t stand to think she would even kiss a guy and the other guy jealous cause she won’t OBEY your dresscode? Get real! Peter, maybe she wants to get back at you and maybe she is just trying to find out if she is still sexy. A woman who is cheated on starts to feel insecure, maybe that is why she with holds sex in the first place. Or maybe you’re not doing it the way she wants. If you want her to stay, you will have to forgive her just as she forgave you. Let her know sex should be just as pleasant for her as it is for you, then she might respond to you better.
I have a similar situation with my boyfriend he is very moody and it’s affected my child the most. He are constantly fighting every weekend over something so small and he would Storm off and go home for a couple of days or if my child wakes him up in the morning he goes mad and curses at me infront of my child and then again he would Storm home. I know he hates he’s job and it isn’t stable and that really bothers him and puts him in bad form. But when he is is the wrong he turns the row on me and changes the subject that in texting other lads and he would shout down at me and look trough all my messages !! He’s mood swings are pushes me away that I don’t feel the same anymore.
Twenty years is quite a commitment. Do you have children that just graduated high school or college? Have you let yourself go? Is he having a midlife crisis? Is he healthy? Sometimes people just need their space. Sometimes this will heal, and sometimes this will divide. My initial advice is unless You are looking for an excuse to end it for sure, let it go. Ignore him and go on like he never said a thing. “I told my wife long ago I was leaving, she ignored me” I am still here and faithful to this day.
I have been married to my wife for 22 years this year. She and I have had a very up and down life together. she told me when we got married she wanted to stay home and raise children. I agreed. Now we have a 17 year old and a 9 year old. She has never had to work, and my job has been high stress and full of disappointments as I have strived to make enough for us to have the lifestyle we both say we want. I have been wrongfully terminated three times (proven in court). I have really struggled to rebuild my career but being in a public position has been very strenuous. As a longtime CEO and now private consultant in the public sector for the past 6 years my economic stress has been huge. I gained a 100 pounds over the years. So in 1999, my wife had an affair with a man, while I was working on the road to make enough money to take care of my family and find a way for us to relocate together. I was devastated. We did go to marriage counseling and our marriage survived this very hurtful situation. I found out she blamed me for the affair, saying our life had taken a toll on our emotionally and she thought she needed to jump ship to find economic security. I relocated us and then again to another state. So we reconnected and had our next little one. Now we have a second home in a well known lake community about 2 hours from our home. She over the past three to four years has taken to going there on her own because she is on a local talk show and says doing that gives her purpose and makes her happy. I usually have to stay behind and work and take care of the kids when she goes there. She gets no pay for the show, it is quite popular and she goes out usually when she is there with her local girlfriends some married, some divorced and some just barfly’s in their late 40’s looking to hook up and be told their sexy. She has gotten into several situations where either a friend has texted me seeing her out with the girls and other men and been suspicious and so on. I have told her repeatedly if you put yourself in these situations sooner or later something bad will happen that will affect us negatively. She thinks I don’t trust her and she loves to dance and have fun. She thinks I am being overly paranoid. She also says she has not been attracted to me because of my weight and that is what has been keeping us apart and less than intimate. She says she loves sex and she is always used to being the center of attention, she is still in great shape and gorgeous even at 49. She gets hit on all the time by men and she seems to enjoy the third party attention and affirmation of her sex appeal still. So then 6 months ago I find out she has been having another cyber affair over facebook and she hooked up with this guy in our lake town to have dinner and chat… she says nothing happened. He is the brother of one of her closets friends who comes over every week to have dinner with us as she just got divorced herself. Our two sons are friends and play baseball together. So I confronted her about all this and she just said, It was stupid I don’t want out of our marriage and she says she ended it. I even found a card he sent her where he said, he felt their meeting had brought them to a new level in their relationship. So I went on a diet and have lost about 50 pounds thus far. Things seemed better, then she went over to the lake house this past weekend with a married girlfriend that was visiting from out of town, who has been her friend since childhood. They went to the bar with the girls, my wife got so drunk she couldn’t drive and was talking to some 20 something man for a longtime and being very confrontational. She drinks at least a couple glasses of wine per day she says it keeps her sane in my high stress and uncertain world of finances. I got behind on our taxes after 2008 and dug a big hole and have been negotiating with the IRS to find a way to settle them. Being self-employed is hard to keep them current and pay for everything. Everytime I confront her about how her going out makes me feel really insecure she just says I am holding onto the past and that I think she is a whore and/or slut, and she has done nothing wrong. I wish I could believe her, but I just can’t get 100% comfortable with this lifestyle or trusting her again. She has broken my heart now two times. Somehow I still love her. I love our family and I don’t want to break it up. But this is killing me and she always places the blame on me for all circumstances and then says this is what gets her stressed out. I am just lost. I don’t know what I should do, or how I can get our relationship back on track or whether she really wants to do so. Everytime we fight she says after our son graduates we are over. That just makes my heart sink… then later she will come back and say, I was just mad, I didn’t mean it. I don’t want our marriage to end. But it happens again always and it did last night as well. This time I just said, “You created this situation, I am not willing to accept the blame for it, and I can see our attorney next week and end this if that is what you want?” Then she says I threatened to divorce her and it is my fault again. I can’t get her words out of my mind I am fat, she is not attracted to her and when we are intimate she has to hold her breath or she says I nearly crush her until she can’t breath. Now I am a big guy. 6’3″ and 280 pounds still and most women find me attractive. Even her girlfriends say they would kill to have her life. Many of them have told me that they think she is crazy to not be truly happy she has a kind, loving and caring man in her life that treats her like a queen and never berates her, or abuses her mentally or physically. I try to make everything our family needs come true… I work really hard, but I also attract a great deal of public detractors due to my public life by way of bloggers and web postings. I am a public speaker, author and public sector consultant engaged in negotiating deals between local governments and businesses that want to expand or relocate to a new area and create jobs. I have been doing this for 22 years since we first married. I don’t have any other knowledge of how to make enough to pay our bills. I feel trapped, confused and don’t know if my marriage is salvageable and/or whether I should keep trying. I have suggested that we go to a counselor again, but she says no, that is not what she needs. So, long story but I am totally at a loss for what direction I should choose.
A Marriage Repaired: You can take on your marriage, improve yourself, deal with your children; or look realistically at divorce. There is dignity in making it work. And, there’s dignity in starting fresh for the right reasons. Take a look at Harville Hendrix or John Gottman's work on rehabilitating a marriage. For many, it can be done. Take an active role.

So, my questions are two. 1. What can I do to help him realize he needs some kind of help? 2. The lack of feeling on my part during sex (which is usually an emotional event for me).. is that an indication that my marriage may be over? I know it is because I don’t trust him right now and haven’t for a long time, but I figured that would just make me guarded, not unfeeling. It felt so wrong and makes me worry.


I just keep thinking that this struggle must be a part of some evolutionary process as human beings. I don’t think we are necessarily meant to stay in a monagamous relationship for a lifetime, but our societies and values are still structured as if that is the ideal and the economic and emotional fall-out is HUGE when those relationships come apart.
OK, so I'm not saying your partner is picking up new hobbies because they're unhappy. It's 100 percent healthy to have side projects, and to do things alone. You might want to worry, however, if it seems like they're using these hobbies as a way of escaping the relationship. "If they are not finding happiness in your relationship, they will try finding it in other aspects of their life," Bizzoco says. And that's not OK.
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.
Hello. I am 38 years old. I have 3 children, 2 from a previous relationship. My husband and I have been together for 13 years and married for 8. We started out as friends. There was no question when you saw one, you saw the other. As time went on, before we got married….I realized something was different. I did some looking and he was having intimate conversations/infidelity with anther woman. I was broken at that moment. He begged me to marry him and it would be better, how dumb. Then here comes my son..that was 10 years ago and he is so distant and none caring. We dont have that same connection. He doesnt care what I say financially, socially, or anyway. I received a STD a few months ago in which he informed me could have come from the toilet seat!! I squat/stand!! I am also a nurse?? He continues to insult my intelligence daily. I am a God fearing woman, but he pushes me daily into something mentally that I dont want to do. He often brings up the fact that we only have one child together. He brings up what my children dont do..This man does nothing in house or not. Granted he does have a job, but in the past year he acts as though I am using him or something. We wash his clothes, pick up behind him. we cook and he may eat or not. He attends church every Sunday and takes the kids. I am not a saint by no means!! I am a woman who knows what I have to do daily. I have no time for foolishness. I get tired, I have no outlet…I have no husband I can talk to or confide in, he’s gone. He lies. Goes places and swears he’s with the guys. I cant express my feelings because the first thing he says is, “what about me”, “I feel the same way”, “Noone listens to me so I dont say nothing”. So what? I have been divorced once, but in this instance my exhusband has now come out!
My plan is to catch them in act and confronted. I wanted to know how long has this been going on and why. I will ask her what she is planning to do with it. If she still wanted to carry on with the guy, then I have to divorce and take custody of my son and move on life. But thinking about it makes me feel like vomiting. I do really love her so much and can’t bear leaving her. What should I do?

As we mentioned earlier, women consider that having a partner is the greatest reward for a man. Finally, they care about the house and the children. Unfortunately, men with time, begin to feel less and less cared by their wives. They want women to be their supporter and partner and give something to them. But certain habits are hard to change, so there is a need for sincere conversation and understanding. You want him to keep saying that you are great, but when have you told him the same thing?
we have been together for 17 years and married for 14, yes after time we did not value you each other, and our marriage became a chore when i found out he was on a chat site. he told me then he was not happy but only after i found out he was on the chat site. but never before that, i have found messages and pics on his phone. i literally have to sneak his phone when he has passed out as he keeps that phone so close to him he never lets it out of his site even if he goes to the loo. he told me he wanted a divorce with a sms message> but still wants me only for sex……. i just give in because I love him.
I just keep thinking that this struggle must be a part of some evolutionary process as human beings. I don’t think we are necessarily meant to stay in a monagamous relationship for a lifetime, but our societies and values are still structured as if that is the ideal and the economic and emotional fall-out is HUGE when those relationships come apart.
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.

Two things occurred to me while reading your story. One is that you have to remember that your husband is a man, not a little boy. You need to let go of the need to take care of him. He’s not your child, and he will deal with your leaving the best way he knows how. You can’t control how he’ll cope — and it’s not your job to make life as smooth as possible for him! Your job is to make the best decision for you and your marriage. And sometimes the best decisions are the most painful.
Absolutely right, Arakiba. And our lack of emotional confidence shows up in many ways and places. It seems to be most triggered in our intimate relationships where we’re not getting our most urgent needs met. The specific ways men and women express that pain are very, very different. I teach men how to break through that pain and create what they want instead.

My new almost boyfriend is kind, wise and occasionally silly in a sweet kind of predictable way.  His jokes are obvious and not worthy of the tonight show, but I so appreciate that he tries to joke that I adore him.  I know a few true professional comedians offstage and all of them have control problems in that they don’t know when to stop, have boundaries issues and you have to have a very thick skin to hang around them when they drink. They seem to think everything and everyone is fair game no matter how tired you are or what is going on in your life.  I don’t believe any of them really want to hurt people’s feelings they just cannot seem to relate to the world without joking.  It is truly non-stop.
My prayer is that you find strength, courage, and peace. May you find a good place to live, and may you connect with friends and family who are supportive and compassionate. I pray for everything to go smoothly as you and your boyfriend make decisions, and for a new home and other practical parts of moving to fall into place quickly and easily. I pray for healing for you and him, and for wisdom as you parent your child after this breakup. May you find faith, hope, and even joy in your future! I pray for all good things for you, for your child, for your life and future relationships.

Again, alone time is key to a healthy relationship. You both should be able to be alone, leave each other alone, and feel comfortable going solo for awhile. That said, it's not normal if your partner needs to be by themselves 24/7. "If you've noticed more individual activities replacing joint ones, that could be a sign of a partner trying to retreat," Rogers says. "They might need time to think or have decided that they need to build up their own identity and independence outside of the relationship."

Everybody needs time on their own and going out with the girls is an important pastime woman crave as it is a chance to be intimate with friends. If they are going to social spots it’s also a chance to be validated. Although you have time together with your wife, it does not sound like it’s a fun time. Think of things to do together that put you both in unknown environments. This will cause discomfort and in turn should spark a bond whereby together you both overcome your immediate anxieties and will rekndle friendship through protective actions.
I would think yes!! If you feel suicidal it’s 100% accurate that you should safely get out of the relationship asap. When we lose sight of who we are and feel hurt enough we feel suicidal it’s that very moment we must know a severe change needs to be made! You must choose to take care of your self first before you can start to help your husband with the way he feels about himself that drives him to treat you in this manner to begin with. Get yourself grounded and begin to work on what you feel is broken in you first. Once you start to see YOUR OWN needs and what is truly important to you without anyone else saving what they feel you can begin to build your marriage with a super strong foundation that can stand the storms that will come for any marriage. All marriages take 100% effort from both sides 50/50 is a good way to see it since as long as you both go 1/2 way you will always meet in the middle but you must remember you CAN ONLY do YOUR part. I hope this helped you. Be safe God bless and take care.
He can’t just say that he feels miserable so he says things that can help you figure that out. Men tend to hide their feelings so they make snide remarks to show their dissatisfaction. Pay attention to those remarks. If you see he’s trying to tell you he’s not happy with you anymore, say it yourself. Women are braver than men, which is why we are usually the ones who break up with men.

In all fairness I have an anger problem too so this is not all his fault. Plus I know I can be really mean especially when reminded of my past so I am by no means innocent in this fiasco marriage. What steps should hubby and I take to improve our marriage? I really do love him but I want my needs to get met as well. My mom even said that the way she sees our relationship is that everything is always about him. He is the type of person that when I say I’m feeling bad he says me too but I feel worse than you. I was throwing up in the bathroom and he was amused and ignored me. I also had a bad flu and he told me to go make pizzas. There is so much more but this post has been long enough. He has good qualities too so what should I do? Sorry for the long post and thanks. Oh and he is a lot older than me if that helps.
DJ, thank you for the acknowledgement. I really appreciate it. I’m almost ashamed to admit I wasn’t really hit that hard in the breakup. I relocated across the country when we moved in together, so I got out of touch with most of my old friends over time. But we both worked full-time, we weren’t married and didn’t have kids so there were no real financial issues. I’ve got new outlets for my hobbies, and new friends over time, so I’m really doing fine today. Except for the “emotional connection” part. After a long-distance relationship for over a year before… Read more »
Steve Horsmon is a Certified Professional Life Coach and owner of Goodguys2Greatmen Relationship Coaching in Livermore, Colorado. He has appeared on local television, blog radio, telesummits, and podcasts all related to maintaining healthy relationships. Steve provides intensely personal, action oriented coaching services for men. He provides 1-on-1 coaching, private retreats and workshops designed to give men new knowledge, skills and mindset to achieve their relationship goals. He is a committed, lifelong mentor who teaches his clients to discover their masculine power, take bold action and create the life they want. He has written articles and guest blogs for numerous relationship and expert websites including his own blog. You can connect with him via  Facebook too.
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