Be the woman he knows sitting at home on the couch. This doesn't mean you need to belch in public or walk around in your sweatpants all the time. This just means you don't have to put up a front for the ladies in your child's class or act snotty in front of his friends. You are who he fell in love with, so you should never feel like you have to be someone else. Be respectful and courteous when you are both in public, but don't try to hide who you are. Having that strong sense of self and high levels of self-confidence are what made him attracted to you in the first place.
As for myself, now I’m struggling with the sadness, anger and grief of ending a relationship. Sometimes in my darker moments I wonder why I and the relationship wasn’t “enough” to inspire my ex to seek out help and get better, but then I remember that even my own parent couldn’t get better for a long time, even with kids in the picture. That’s my lingering belief of “not being enough” rearing its head, I know. But deep down, I feel at peace that I broke my own pattern, that I stood for my own happiness, that I was honest with my own needs. Whatever decision Katie makes, I hope it leaves her with that deep sense of integrity and honoring herself.
Life’s about more than just finding a man. Life is this great journey and it’s not about finding a man. Some of us will find a man along the way and it’ll add to our happiness. Others will stay single and other things will make them just as happy. You can be happy with or without a man. It honestly doesn’t matter. As long as you’re being true to you, you’ll end up happy.
What about a spouse who suffers from depression and refuses to get the help he needs. A father of 3 young children who is saying hurtful things to his 4 year old son? He jumped out of our van with the kids inside because he didn’t want to have a discussion. He was on meds for 6 weeks in winter of 2010 and went off, saying the doc said to (she’s my doc too and we have spoken and she recommends meds for a year) I’ve given him a year to try to go on his own terms but with attacking our son verbally that has challenges from a premature birth I refuse to watch him destroy our childrens lives because of his unwillingness to get the help he needs. His parents are concerned about him as well. I’ve just ordered some self help books recommended by a psychologist friend. I have definately fallen out of love with him. This has been going on for 4 years, seems he sort of lost his mind when I became pregnant with twins. Any suggestions??? My doctor said often the non-depressed spouse has to leave or ask the spouse to leave before they will finally get help but often they still won’t get the help they need.

As the novelist and essayist Charles Baxter put it in his book Burning Down the House, "People in a traumatized state tend to love their furniture." It's almost as if we're gathering things to bolster against loneliness. And there's a study to confirm the same rule applies to marriage: Margaret Clark, a professor of psychology at Yale, found that "people who attach more value to their possessions may be less secure in their personal relationships than those who put less value on material goods." A large-screen, 3D-enabled television isn't complicated. A shiny new tablet won't expect too much.


I recently told my husband of a little over a year (we’ve been togehter 5 years total and have a 2 year old together) that I wanted a seperation. I’m not happy with our marriage and I havn’t been for a long time I don’t believe we should ever have gotten married but at the same time I love him and I’m so scared that I will change my mind. I work full time, go to school full time and take care of our daughter most of the time while he works at a restuarant as a server about 20-25 hours a week making little to know money (and he’s 6 years older). I’m tired of not only carrying the financial burden but of nothing being good enough. Nothing I do seems to be right for him I don’t clean or cook enough. We also are barely ever itimate I’m in my early 20’s and would like to have regular intercourse with my husband and it’s gotten to the point where I feel like I have to beg him to be with me and even when we are he acts like it’s a treat. I’m so scared that somehow he will talk me into staying with him (b/c he can not support himself), but on the other hand he is the father of my child and I don’t want to abandon him to be homeless (he has no family here). I just don’t know where to draw the line? When does it become him taking advantage of me? and how do I prevent him from talking me into staying especially when I KNOW that it would be bad?
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.
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 kept telling him that I Knew something, if not an affair, was up. He finally admitted that there was something wrong and he didnt understand it. He explained that he loved me, he still believed we were soulmates but for some reason he wasn’t content. He insisted it was not my fault and there was no other woman. He felt he needed some time to discover himself as he’d never lived alone. Having lived with him since the age of 16 I thought maybe space was what we both needed and I agreed for him to go travelling. He had always been drawn to a particular country and its culture so I suggested he to go there. He was hoping I’d suggest that, I think he even leaned the conversation that way … just as I suspected from the moment he left, there was another woman waiting out there for him – he moved straight in with her and pretended he was staying with a male business client he had befriended. I eventually got the truth from him and he explained that he’d met her a few months before moving to that country. She was the reason for the passwords, etc. He said he couldn’t keep away from her – it was like some unexplained spiritual thing. They weren’t matched, he didn’t much like her as a person, and (I know this sounds pompous but) she is less attractive than me and not at all his type. He said that she had told him that she felt the same unexplained attraction to him. He said that when he moved in with her he knew what a mistake he’d made but (same old story) she had psychological issues (I’ve read her blog and can confirm this as she talks about her mental problems on there) and he felt an obligation to do things properly.
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?
Do I believe I made mistakes in that relationship? You betcha! Was I the best wife I could have been? Absolutely not! And for that I am sorry. But I also had to understand that all the blame could not be placed on my shoulders. Sometimes, often times, that’s what we women do. We take the blame for bad situations, and we wonder what we could have done to prevent them. 
What’s happened as a result has been brilliant. I started tuning much more actively into my husband — prioritizing him, touching him regularly (holding his hand, sitting very close to him, hugging him, rubbing his shoulders, etc), more actively praising and appreciating him, and — crucially — not letting my ego get the best of me and not letting my need to be right lead to Armageddon. As a result, I have managed to bring out the best in my husband.

I think your question, Katie, is good snapshot of most questions I get on this blog: some form of “I’m dissatisfied with my boyfriend. Should I stay or should I go?” The thing is that he may have the biggest heart in the world, but if he’s perpetually unemployed, a serial cheater, a drug addict, a commitmentphobe, or a terrible communicator, it really doesn’t matter how much you love him. I would say the same thing about a guy who is depressed. It’s not that he’s not worthy of love, but at a certain point, you have to ask if this is the life you want to lead: waiting for days for him to emerge from his self-imposed cocoon while you try to act like everything’s normal. I think there are enough quality people out there who are NOT this way that you don’t have to accept that from a relationship. I’ve written this before and gotten a little bit of blowback on it.
I have a regular full time job and have bills to pay. My children and I live with his mother and father and sister. He stopped communicating again. No texts, no calls. He didn’t even greeted me during our anniversary. He doesn’t want to receive/answer my call. My family got pity on me and they wanted me to come home. So, I decided to go home with my kids. He still doesn’t communicated with me or even ask how the kids are. I also think he has another woman there. I don’t want to go to him because I done begging and pleading our relationship will work. I am spent up, crying and asking why he is doing this to me. But I have decided to stop going after him and focus on the positive side. I don’t think our marriage will still work out and I am no longer hoping it will. I am still young, still 25 and maybe there is still a man out there who will truly love me.

When we had a big fight just this MArch, it was so hard to reconcile because of our situation. He was there and I am here. He doesn’t want to talk to me, or to my son. He doesn’t want to solve the problem! The situation stayed like that for almost a month. Without communication. Then he came home because he had an accident. I thought we would be make peace then. But he blamed the accident on me. He doesn’t want to connect with me anymore, though he said he would try. We had a big fight at home and he finally said that he doesn’t want to fight because the children will be affected. When I asked him if he still loves me, he said “I don’t know” and he was angry for making him answer that and he said he needed time. When his sick leave was over, he left again for work.
In today's article, we will focus on men. We want to show women what frustrates their partners and to what they pay attention to better take care of their husbands. A list of reasons why males are unhappy in a relationship was provided by Womansday.com. Finally, the men revealed what are the most common causes of their dissatisfaction and sadness, and after reading this, we will know what to change in our relationships to make them happy again. Look at our list!
Wonderful, God-inspired words that speak straight to the heart of so many women including myself. Regardless of the state of your marriage, as women we are nurturers, ‘fixers’, and as you said, often carry the heavy burden of our husband’s happiness solely on our shoulders. When things don’t go as planned, it’s a hard pill to swallow. Thank you, Brie, for reminding us that this burden is not ours to carry. God instructs us to love, pray for and be a help-mate to our husbands. The rest is up to him…
But you did none of those things that my ex did. You tried. You talked to your boyfriend. You discussed these issues with him. You say you tried to get him to seek out help. I would’ve been so thankful if my ex had treated me like you treated yours. And I would’ve probably responded with positive changes. The fact that your ex didn’t, means you did the right thing by walking out. There’s only so much you can do to help your partner heal when they are not cooperating in any way. I wish you quick recovery and complete healing in getting through this post-breakup stage, which is indeed very hard.
I’ve been with my guy for a few years. His is my best friend, and I can honestly say I love him. Lately I haven’t felt happy. We are in a long distance relationship, and the last few times I got to see him I was not as excited as I was in the past. The thought of breaking up with him makes me feel sick sometimes, and the explaining to everyone would be exhausting. I look at my siblings and see how happy they are with their significant others. Sometimes I feel like I don’t look at my guy the way I see other couples look at each other.
M 23. I got married 8 months ago. it was a love marriage. we dated for 2 years before getting married and we were madly in love. but since our wedding, things have not turned out they way they should have. we are just fighting all the time and abusing each other. all this started with his family misbehaving with me. i could cpe up with that and i reacted. he said he couldn’t take a word against them. and gradually we have stopped being physically intimate and this morning he said he doesn’t love me anymore the way he did. is it really over???
When you're together, you order the same Chinese food every time (same places, same dishes, same greasy packets of mustard no one uses). You select movies from the same Netflix ghetto (Romantic Comedies Based on Foreign Films with a Dark Twist Recommended for Jane & John) every weekend. "He never wants to try anything new," you complain to a girlfriend, only it's not quite true, is it, because when he's with his friends he'll try anything, from windsurfing to kale. In a romantic relationship, there is, or at least should be, the profound joy that comes from being known; that familiarity, though, can make a body feel loathe to change, afraid of eye rolls or "You do not!"'s from those closest to him. There needs to be room, in your relationship, in every relationship, for him to say, "This is going to sound crazy, but maybe we could..."
Hi. Im no expert but if he can stop to care about her feelings he can stop to care about your feelings if he loves you. Sometimes i believe some men get a little to selfish because they feel the love we have for them. But make him see that if he can’t stop seeing her then your of the menu too “so to speak”. Make him decided what’s more important. That way you can also find some one who can make you happy whether its him or someone else. That’s my thought good luck!
Thank you- I will definitely check out the marriage manual. My husband has a good relationship with his parents, and I have said in the past that I love them as if they were my own ( they treat me like a true daughter). I think he might just be scared that our marriage is failing. I am glad ge told me now, as opposed to when it might have been too late. I think the rest of the week will be a indicator of how we can overcome this obstacle.

I knew going in that he was jealous – but was sure that it would be something I could live with – he wasn’t over the top, but then that’s exactly what it became. I’ve been accused of flirting, hitting on little 19 year old boys (I’m 38) and having affairs with men I work with, trying to seduce our pastor, etc – I have tried to reassure him, confessed my love for him, and reconfirmed that I was committed to this relationship…but it has spiralled. it’s become abusive – not in the physical sense – but emotional and mental. I have called him names and thrown things, and so has he. We are in counseling and have learned about ‘time-outs’ and the four horsemen (criticism, contempt, defensiveness, stonewalling) and I have sincerely been trying to show him and our relationship respect (although I have gotten frustrated and hurt, and called him an a$$$hole through tears, and hung up). He can be very mean to me, and it hurts. I have tried and tried, prayed and prayed – been rebuked, sneered at and ridiculed for turning to supportive friends for guidance. I even see my own counselor, but he doesn’t like that.
Sometimes, we offer help in a way we think would feel helpful for us, when really, our partner might need something completely different. For example, offering to give your partner space to process their unhappiness might be the opposite of what they'd like; they may want company. The point here is to ask how they would like to be supported and to do that.
I was inspired to write this article by a reader’s comment. “My husband and I have been together since high school and got married 12 years ago,” said Jessie on How to Know if Your Husband Still Loves You. “We’ve always been comfortable together, but over the past couple years I’ve been getting the feeling he no longer wants to be with me. Our relationship is just one of convenience. All of the signs he doesn’t love me are there, and he says a lot of very very hurtful things to me. He tries to make me feel like a horrible person and he attacks the things I say and do. After he says all these mean things to me he wants me to act as though everything is alright. He says I need to smile and be happy etc. but I’m feeling like I could crawl up in a ball and die. Are these signs your marriage is over? I think so but it would help to get an outside opinion.”

I see you are on this page frequently, so I thought I would ask you for help here. I wrote a lengthy comment on the page dealing with difficult parents, and I desperately need some help or advice. I don’t know what to do…it’s going to ruin my marriage and/or my life soon. Please read it and see if you can help me at all. I would greatly appreciate any insight you may have. I’m desperate!!!
Evan, I’m de-lurking to say this post is BRILLIANT. Thank you a million times over for this! I’ve been feeling sad since dumping a moody guy last month, and this is just what I needed to hear. You’ve helped me feel so much better about my decision. I hear a lot of my male friends complain about dating women who are “downers,” but rarely do I hear my female friends complain about moody men, so I was torturing myself about dumping this guy. I wanted to believe he’d snap out of it, but he didn’t, so… goodbye and good luck to him. Thank you, Evan, for your perspective as someone who has “been there,” and thank you for reminding women that we deserve better.
Hi and thanks for your site. I love it! I’ve been married going on 3 months but have been with my husband for 2 years prior to marriage. I don’t know where to begin. I feel like I am going crazy and I don’t know what to do. I feel that my husband is a good man but we have a lot of issues to work on. I came from an abusive household but my husband didn’t. we both very bad tempers and there has been a lot of mean words said and physical violence on both of our parts. Whenever we argue my husband always brings up my childhood to deflect what it is that I have a problem with even though I’ve asked him not to do this. For example, he works long hours 6 days a week while I go to school 5 days a week 6 hours a day and do all of the household chores including laundry, cleaning, dishes, grocery shopping , and I always have a hot meal prepared for him when he gets home plus getting up early in the morning to make him breakfast and a lunch for work. He does absolutely nothing but work. On his day off he spend 12-16 hours playing videogames. When I asked him when we would spend time together he told me that he wanted to have fun and was playing the game. I asked if he meant that playing a videogame was more fun than hanging out with me and he said yes. Then he proceeded to put me down for not doing the laundry in a timely manner.
Through our marriage, he kept his own place, had taken the set of keys he had given me at the time of our wedding (it’s where our best man and his girlfriend stayed) and didn’t return them to me. He would stay out all night, not call, not come home – and when he did,he’d come home and drink – complain about me and our lack of sex…after our first counseling, he gave me a set of keys back…which I rejected, and shouldn’t have, but i am so full of anger and resentment…and still am. He moved out of the house (which I bought before the marriage) on May 10, but still has things in the house. He comes over and lets himself in when he wants (I have asked that he call beforehand)…and I have asked for the space to learn to let go of the anger and to forgive him, and miss him… but he won’t give me that space – and when we spend any time together, we end up fighting.
Thank you all with the replys they are so encouraging. My live in boy friend of 6 years just told me about a week ago that he is Not happy anymore and we are not going anywhere. So I’ve been wondering why is he still here. And is this just something that will pass. I’m confused as to why he is still here. I know He is Not cheating. I work I pay bills I cook when I’m not too tired from work I clean do laundry so I know its not me..
Well i have a question and need some help. I just left my husband who i was married to for 3 years but all together 6 years. We have one child together, He is a great dad and great to me here is the problem he will not work he has had many jobs in the past but u know something always happens. Never has he once paid for me to eat or something really nice no rent light etc… i was just fed up with it he would get mad if i bought myself something new and did not get him anything. Now i feel like i am all alone just me and my child i take care of myself and have a o.k job but get paid . I pay all my bills myself never getting any help from my husband. I looked and really cannot find someone going through my same situation.

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.”


The most effective way to help others become happier, then, very well may be by focusing on becoming happy ourselves. This may strike some as selfish, but we can easily imagine flowing readily from our own happiness a heightened ability to encourage, support, and inspire. One strategy we shouldn't adopt, no matter how tempting it may be, is to give our unhappy loved ones what they ask for automatically without carefully considering the consequences. What unhappy people want is so often not what they need that this knee-jerk approach must in the end be considered unwise at best. We may feel impelled to give them what they want by our own sense of urgency to pry them out of whatever unhappy box they're in. But this urge often rises from our discomfort, not theirs, and causes us to suspend our good judgment in favor of what seems expedient.
Okay, so maybe you and your husband aren't experiencing any conflict. You aren't nagging him. You aren't arguing. Actually, come to think of it, you aren't doing much of anything — even getting it on. This might seem like no big deal, but couples coach Lesli Doares, host of Happily Ever After is Just the Beginning on Web Talk Radio, says this could spell trouble in paradise. "It isn't just that most men have a higher sex drive," she told me. "It's that this is a way for men to open up emotionally. Sex releases oxytocin, the bonding hormone, so not being physical can create distance. It also can result in feelings of rejection which can lead to feeling unloved."
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