I think a lot of guys get to this point simply via time. Time passes, everything seems to stay the same, not getting better but not getting worse. And, then something minor and seemingly insignificant happens: your favorite pair of pants are now too tight, someone at work whom you like or crush on makes a joke about your bald spot, you get a younger boss or get passed over for a promotion. You see my point?
My husband also told me that he wasn’t happy in our marriage. Unfortunately, I took no action and didn’t take this all that seriously. As a result, we separated and almost divorced. I wish I had handled it differently because I had a lot of catching up to do. Luckily, I finally stumbled upon some strategies that worked. If it helps, you can read the whole story on my blog http://isavedmymarriage.com
Hey Karina, was wondering how things are. Just curious, can you tell me what your ethnicity is? And if others can mention their ethnicity and their partners’ ethnicity. I’m Mexican, and I’m wondering how relationships are across races, and don’t want to generalize when having conversations about it, without getting some feedback from real individuals in struggling relationships to see if ethnicity plays a factor along with culture, upbringing and social class.
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 have been married to my wife for 4 years now. Our marriage got into trouble a couple of months into it. I have issues that needed to be dealt with, including my bout with visual enhancement (i dont want to call it pornography because it really isn’t since it doesn’t involve nudity, but let’s just say it isn’t appropriate for a man to look at while married to his wife.) It’s something that has been a part of me for 20 years, but have been seriously battling it for the last 5 years. I’ve had ups and downs, but with my wife complaining months into our marriage while i was trying to serve in our church because i loved to, she complained about the apartment we lived in, she complained about the money i was making, she complained about everything and she started showing her misery with life, then i got sick and was admitted into the hospital. During that period while i was trying to recoup in the hospital, my wife got into it with my sister and sent her a nasty e-mail which made my sister cry. The wife then tells me i need to stay at my mother’s house to recoup because she had to care for our three month old son. It was that interim when i tried to recoup from surgery that she refuses to talk to me and leaves me dry. When I get back after two weeks she lets out all these issues between us, mainly that she has declared my mother and sister her enemy because of percieved attempts on their part to dethrone her as my wife. She couldn’t prove half of her accusations, but more importantly she’s not sorry that she hurt my sister with that wicked e-mail. We then went into counseling but she only went because she declared i was the sole problem for the marriage. Her unrepentance, in her mind, was not a factor. She forced me to ban my mother from our house, ban my sister from having a relationship with our son, declared my family people non-grata, and gets upset everytime i visit my mom or honor her on mother’s day. She doesn’t understand having my mother, who raised me without my dad around, sacrificed her life to give me what i needed, banned from MY house is hurting me in so many ways, yet she doesn’t care. She has her family to go to, her friends she can see any time, and yet her response to me when i bring that up is “you made yourself second.” Ultimately, my wife did not want ANY hand in helping me deal with my own “sexual” problems. Instead I had to deal with it on my own. The sex between us became a problem, the fact that she totally disrespected me in front of our first counselor by bringing up stuff about me and blindsiding me, like the whole “semi-pornography” as i’ll call it from here, and leaving me to the wolves. She entered each counseling session with the intent of embarassing me and in her mind “fixing me,” yet never intending to deal with her issues. After a few episodes of her physically assaulting me (something to this day she NEVER apologized for,) insulting my relatives and causing a near brawl because of her selfish actions, and ultimately throwing me under the bus instead of working with me after i did commit an error against my wife. The error i committed can be construed as adultery, but it did not involve me having an affair or any kind of relationship with another woman. But it did involve me preparing to do some kind of extra curricular activity. Bottom line, even though that did cause a strain, my wife agreed we would work it out. Yet after 3 years, she not only disrespects me in front of my son, she not only acknowledges having my mother, who is very old, totally on the outside of our family while she enjoys the benefits of having her family in on EVERY outing and occasion we have, like our son’s birthday for example, she not only curses me out and reminds me of my sins against while justifying her sins (like posting an ad on a dating site, then when she was caught she lied TWICE about it to me,) she kicked me MULTIPLE times for the year I was unemployed and looking for work while attending school. During my unemployment she never offered ONCE to help pay for my school tuition, threatened to kick me out of the house, sometimes threatened to have her family beat the crap out of me, and got upset when i tried to do some work outside of school for experience because it interfered with her sleep time. And through all of this, she justifies it all, NEVER APOLOGIZED for any of the bad stuff she did and continues to do, yet blames the failing marriage on me. I was wrong with the stuff I did onto her and wish I can take it back, but it’s not enough even if I got from counselor to counselor and acknowledge i was wrong. She to this day insists it’s all my fault and i have no reason to feel any pain. I’m in a box, my wife resents that i feel any emotion not coinciding with hers, and makes me feel bad for expressing any kind of pain. We are currently seeing a counselor, and i have been talking to this counselor about my “semi-pornography” thing, but my wife even scoffs at that, too…I have been seriously thinking about moving out and ultimately getting a divorce. My wife is not serious about fixing this. She just wants to destroy me and then claim she tried to fix this. I am boxed in, and guilted into thinking i have no right to feel sadness or pain…
For some reason your roommate—er, life partner—has been following you around all night, when all you want is to finish up the evening's menial tasks so that you can commune with your true passion (i.e., DVR'd episodes of Game of Thrones), tapping you on the shoulder and asking you inane questions about electric toothbrushes and dry cleaning and RSVPs. Is he trying to be irritating? I'm guessing that no, he is not trying. (It comes naturally! Hey-oh!) Chances are he's hungry for a little attention, and is therefore resorting to the grown-up's version of sleeve-tugging. Give it to him—not only will you be nurturing your relationship, but you'll increase your chances of getting a foot rub while you catch up with the Lannisters.
my husband when he came out of his cave came out like a grizzly bear willing to tear heads off when he was not allowed to have his way over time off , job choice and shift choice by seniority I have seen him break a mans back against a light pole because he was hounding my husband to work a fourth eight hour shift inhis place and let the man take us to a concert, I have seen my husband talking to four men about pulling his bid and when they said he could either go in under his own power and remove his bid or they would carry him in and the result would be the same he would remove his bid, My husbands answer was to grin and tell them to take whoever was whose wife , he could not tell the relationship or the way it worked with gay men and they could get off his porch, off his property and out of his face or he would kill them where they stood, then when the county commissioners son took the bait and the first swing it gave my husband all the rea, My husband paced around for onewson he needed to leave all four in bad condition heading for a trauma care to be placed in a critical care unit.
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…
If you’re married to a good man and you’re unhappy – or bored, unfulfilled, grumpy – the problem isn’t your husband. You already know that he’s not the reason you’re unhappy. You know your marriage is fine, if not the most exciting relationship on earth. You know there’s something more to life, but you can’t put your finger on it. So, you look to the most important person in your life for answers: your husband.
my questions? how can i continue to waffle? how do you know when it’s truly over? when you feel like you’ve failed, when you’re not sure if there’s anything left to save? and when your son (my son lives with me – is planning to move out, but has made it very clear that he hates the man I married – not because of my husband’s treatment of him, but because of the way my son has seen and heard my husband treat me) despises your husband? how do you forgive and move past?
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.
Of course if something is bothering you, make sure you tell him about it as well. These conversations should be calm and collected. You want to make sure that you both realize that you’re in a safe atmosphere where you can easily share and work on improving things together. Don’t panic if you’re having marriage trouble. Communication is key, and together you can reinforce the love and joy between you.
There are great women out there and great relationships that have been built. I feel that with the lack of time that is spent on each other in a relationship due to career interests and working all the time; marriage just dwindles down to staying together for our kids. Emotionally manipulative and to spend the rest of my life trying to figure the emotional puzzle out…no way. Life is way too short to live in misery and having to be attached to the opposite sex. I have to re-build myself again for I just have no interest in continuing on in this relationship. I don’t regret the time spent for there were good times. We rarely argued and were never verbally abusive. One thing I can state is that my wife is a controller and I just have had enough with being the 4th child in our Family. I don’t want to be married to my mother anymore:) I have lost an emotional attachment to my wife and I understand that it is important for her when it comes to a relationship that I just cannot provide.
Thank you, Alex, for your prompt response! Yes, I can see in my husband a world of hunger...never quite getting what he wants to make him happy. Sadly, I haven't helped - he wants to spend a lot of money on a new recliner so he can read his books. I ask him if it will make him happy, and he says yes, and alas, of course, in due time, it does not, which really shouldn't surprise me.
That sounds way easier than it was. It was hard. It was agonizing to walk away from a relationship that brought so much happiness, peace and contentment in my life. It’s hard to give up those dreams I had with my ex: the children I was going to have, the life we were going to lead. I come from a family with a depressed parent, and it was HARD for me to break my pattern of “caretaking” and co-dependency and taking on all the responsibility. I feel sad to lose someone I love, angry at him and myself, guilty for “abandoning” my boyfriend. And yet I’ve seen up close from my own parents what Julia is 1.1 says: if they can’t take responsibility and take care of themselves, there’s little hope of having a functional relationship until they do. And I’ve done so much work to get to a happy, contented point in my life that I can’t give that up now, just to hold onto a relationship that isn’t meeting my needs.
Me and my husband were great to begin with now he just cannot be bothered with anything to do with me at all. He is all for our daughter and leaves me out completely. He is also sneaking out late at night. i still love him but this is hard to take. We have been together seven years and I’m only 26 I don’t wanna be a divorcee in my twenties!!!!! please help!!!!
Thank you ladies with sharing. I really felt supported reading your words and experiences. A week ago I broke up with my boyfriend of 6 months. He was very grouchy and negative most of the time. Sometimes it was directed at me, sometimes not. Initially I attributed it to his life circumstance….losing his job, reorganizing his life. I now think that is how he relates to his environment and I don’t think he will ever change. He is a Marine and maybe his exposure to that culture and the lifestyle contributed to his incompatible behavior and attitude. I recognized that continuing down that road with him would have been unhealthy for me. It already was. I tried in so many ways to support his struggle and just lost the interest in continuing. Despite my deep care for him, our dynamic became unbearable. The issues became undeniable when he was broke with nowhere to go and he started staying at my house, despite me expressing kindly that I didn’t want that because living together means more when it is intentional about a vision of relationship and less about being convenient. I couldn’t turn my back and by moving him in, we were forced into facing relationship issues sooner than we were ready. We totally broke what we had and it ended in a way I truly regret. BIG emotion and I kicked him out, which was damaging to him and damaging to me. I do not regret ending it, but I do regret ending it in such an abrupt and destructive way. I think my big message here is despite the pain that a partner’s moods cause, end it in a way that is respectful to both. We both deserve to be available for something more compatible ahead and a destructive ending makes the reinvention difficult.
Hi Henry, thanks for your thoughts. You asked: ” Where is the part about “happy husband” in this saying?” First, “happy wife, happy life” is an invention created to confuse you. It’s not true and it’s a unhealthy perspective for both parties. Therefore, there is no “happy husband” equivalent except for “Happy man, happy husband.” Relationships tends to self-destruct when one or the other partner puts the responsibility for their happiness on the other. It’s an impossible task, but we try anyway. “If you REALLY loved me you would find a way to make me happy”. Happiness is not given… Read more »
IVE BEEN MARRIED FOR SIX YEARS NOW AND ALL THROUGH THIS TIME MY HUSBAND HAS A MARRIED FEMALE FRIEND WITH WHOM HE KEEPS RUNNING TO HE TELLS HER EVERY THING THAT IS GOING OFF IN OUT MARRAIGE HE HAS TOOK HER SIDE ALL THE TIME WHEN WE ARGUE AND SAY THAT IF HE HAS TO MAKE A CHOICE HE WILL CHOOSE HER EVERY TIME ,I SPEND ALL MY TIME SAT IN SPARE ROOM WIL MY COMPUTER WHEN HE IN THE HOME AS HE SCARES ME ,HE HAS HIT ME AND MADE ME BLACK AND BLUE IM NOW SIXTY AND FEEL THAT I CAN NOT FIGHT FOR HIS AFFECTIONS ANY MORE I WANT IT TO ALL END BUT HE CAN OR WONT ACKNOWLEGE THIS IT IS MY HOUSE AND IM MADE TO FEEL LIKE A LODGER IN IT EACH TIME I TELL HIM ITS OVER HE GIVES ME THE LITTLE BOY LOST THEN I START FEELING GUILTY PLUS HIS FAMILY START BECOMING ABUSIVE WITH ME HIS MOTHER INCLUDE HOW DO I GET OUT OFF THIS ONE AS THERE WILL ALWAYS BE THREE PEOPLE IN THIS MARRIAGE
I waa his frst choice..he was my life..but 5 month back all get changed. He doesnt want ne in his life..i asked him that y he is doing dis. He replied to me by saying that i am not that girl who he was thinking..from last few months i tried my level bst to save my relation with him but he didnt tried a single time. He always used ti say that he will leave hin if i will doubt him. He always show his temper if i disobey his words. He get angry when i say anything related to love or attachement. He has changed his self..what shuld i do?.. i love him badly..and i can imagine my lyf with him only and no one else..
My wife is 41 I’m 56. Been together 10 yrs married 9 yrs. It’s been 9 yrs of verbal, emotional and psychological abuse from her. To start, she has a complex about having small breasts. I have no problem with them. I’m not allowed to touch them, not even during sex, which now is down to once a month. Even then it’s a fight. We don’t ever “make love”. It’s just quick sex. If I try to initiate sex, it doesn’t happen. If i persist she becomes irate, obscene and it’s a big fight. I’m not allowed to caress or to kiss her. Sex is only when she initiates it. No passion or foreplay. I’ve been begging and pleading for years. We fight and argue all the time, even about simple things. The next morning she would be all cheery as if nothing happened and I of course would not be. I keep telling her she’s destroying our marriage. What complicates it is that at the beginning I put up $63K to purchase our home with a mortgage. We also have a 5 yr old son that lives with us. My first boy child. I have 4 grown girls. The abuse over the years has taken a toll and I”m ready to end the marriage. I just can’t take it anymore. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Multiply it by 10 steady years, month after month, week after week. EVERYDAY!!!
I also encourage you to call a local distress line or women’s help center. You need to reach out for support — and I’m so glad you reached out here! But, you need in-person support to help you figure out the best thing to do with your life right now. And, that support will help you stay committed to whatever decision you make about leaving your marriage or staying with him and working things out.
my hubby and i have been together 2years but out of the two we have only been married for a year. we started out as friends becaues i have 2 older children. then after we got married long come our newborn and then thats when i started to see the long hrs he put in at work and than the change to myself and my 2 older children .he and myslef don’t speack much anymore to one another or look at one another like we did before. his attiued to my children have changed. need help understanding what to do or how to feel about this.
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.
While it's healthy to go out and see your own friends, these people shouldn't take preference over your relationship. "If your partner always seems to have other plans and doesn't include you, it's a red flag that they aren't happy," Hershenson says. Speak up if your SO seems to care about their social life than what's best for you/the relationship.
Are you unhappy in your marriage? Does your husband just not understand you? Has nothing you’ve said gotten through to him? Here are some novel ways to open his eyes to your pain and suffering. Below is a guaranteed Five Step Plan to get your husband to take full ownership for all of the marital issues and apologize accordingly. Because you deserve it. (PS. This is a SATIRE! If you want real help communicating with your husband, read other posts on this site, or my book!)
That you for writing this article. I am a 30 yr old woman who has been in a commonlaw relationship for 10 yrs. We have 2 kids together. My significant other had an emotional/physical i dont know affair with our neighbour who is 20! I recently lost my job and sitting here in this house with that #$%&* next door is hard to take. I find i have more and more time to think about the relationship each day and i have become very self-isolating and depressed. I have contiplated suicide too often to count in the last few months. The only way i see moving on is by leaving him. I tried to leave, made arrangements for an apartment and told him I did so. He managed to beg me into staying. My life has come to a halt. I want to go back to school and become a naturopathic doctor someday. When he says he loves me i can not think of anything to say..the words are not there. He thinks this year would be a good year to get married, i told him it aint happening unless he comes clean about what happened with the “child” next door. I dont think that is going to happen anytime soon. I need to get out of this relationship before I turn into some depressed raging bitter old wife someday..
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!
Who doesn’t enjoy a compliment from their partner every now and then. It reinforces why you’ve chosen each other and helps create a sense of security. Surely they can only mean good things, right? Well… according to Salkin, sometimes compliments can actually be warning signs that your partner isn’t happy, especially when they start to feel a little off . She explains that when your SO starts giving you compliments that are unnatural or just too much, “for example, he or she tells you how perfect you are and how he or she doesn't deserve you” that it may actually be a “a backhanded foreshadowing that something is up and that they're looking for you to break up with them.” Confusing, right?
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?
It doesn’t matter what you think about him or how much love you gave him. You’ll never change him, make him healthier, or get him back. Don’t chase him or beg him to come back to you. It hurts, but you can’t have the relationship you wanted. It’s as simple – and as terrible – as that. He doesn’t love you the way you love him. No matter what you do, you won’t change his mind or make him love you.
Thank you for your article, there are so many questions that go through your head when you are contemplating divorce. Your article put a lot of things into perspective for me. After 26 years of marriage to a really good man, I'm just not sure I love him the way I should anymore and I think he is equally feeling the distance between us. I truly thought he was my forever (if that even exists) and it is so hard to make that final decision to leave. Addictions are the biggest problem, gaming, pornography, etc. and it is really the emotional emptiness that hurts the most. Trying to understand why someone becomes so addicted to things (so easily) is frustrating for me. I've tried to listen and understand his problem, but it just seems like a weakness more than an illness to me. For anyone going through this, I feel empathy, it is honestly the hardest thing I've ever been through in my life--and I haven't even filed for divorce yet. Thanks again for the article.
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.
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.
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 was reading your blog and your patient's brother sounds so much like mine. It's so frustrating and heartbreaking, especially when there are children involved. I try to maintain some distance but it never works out. HIs kids or my mom beg me to do something, go see him, try to get through to him, help him somehow.I just keep getting frug back into his mess.
So I just recently found out I'm 5 weeks pregnant with my first child. My boyfriend is freaking out over the situation, he keeps saying it's not a good time (It's never a good time to have a baby) and he doesn't want me to keep it. I've tried talking to him, but it usually turns into an argument. I haven't told my family I'm pregnant yet so I dont really have anyone else to vent to about this.
My ex-husband had a long term affair with a woman from work for several years. He had a baby with another women when we were only married for two years. He never cooked or cleaned until a coworker started cooking lunch for me, after 20 years of marriage, no matter how often I asked him. Then he accused me of having an affair with the coworker who prepared lunch for me and told all of our friends that I was having an affair. He put antifreeze in the water bottle I keep in the refrigerator to drink after my walk. When I confronted him he grabbed the water bottle out of my hand and the antifreeze and left the house. When he came back he did not have my water bottle or the antifreeze and told me no one would ever believe me. Many times I received calls from work or from his sister wondering where he was and lecturing me on how he was being irresponsible by consistently being absent when he was supposed to be there. He never gave me or the kids a gift for Christmas or our birthdays and charged lingerie from Victoria Secrets to our joint account. He also took all the money saved from our 20 year marriage and put in a his own personal account. He took the money from our brokerage account as well and I was unable to find it. He took all the money from our kids college funds and spent it. I would say these were pretty good signs that the marriage was over before it even started. It was a shame it took me 20 years to wise up.
"A big source of unhappiness in a marriage is when one or both partners let themselves go. This can be physically — gaining weight, quitting exercise, developing unhealthy habits. Or it can be developmentally, where they stop trying to improve. For example, many people lose their fun-loving, adventurous nature as they continue in a marriage. Or, where they once had zest for life and passion for their partner, now they're always tired and only focused on work." —Bennett
When something comes up in life, whether that's a work event or any accomplishment and your partner isn't the first person you're sharing it with — or one of the firsts, Fleming says that it may be that "you prefer to get your needs mets outside the relationship." To that end, Greer points out that not having any meaningful conversations aside from "rudimentary conversations about chores and things that need to get done" is a warning sign that your relationship is not in a good place.