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…
My patient found herself thinking about detaching from her brother frequently, and in fact would do so for long stretches of time. But then she'd learn he'd locked himself in his house for days and couldn't stop herself from being drawn back into his life. After this last episode, however, she found herself more focused on maintaining a safe emotional distance. She still cared, she confided to me, but had come to a new understanding about her limitations. She knew some part of her brother still wanted to be happy, but it seemed covered up by a part that reveled in misery. She would keep tabs on him, she decided, and intervene when he seemed in real danger, but she refused to continue suffering on account of his suffering. Which for her meant allowing him to suffer alone.
I’m 31 years old and I’ve been with my boyfriend for over a year. We both feel that communication and respect are most important in a relationship and have many shared interests. My boyfriend is an amazing listener. He’s kind and caring, treats family and friends well, and has a calm yet serious personality that complements my emotional personality, which flusters easily.
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 have been married for five years, with my husband for twelve years. I’m not really sure if we should stay together or not. Last year I left him for three months then came back and now he says “he is just waiting for me to leave again”. We have been having the same fights for 12 years. They are- I don’t clean the house the way he thinks I should and I don’t have sex with him enough. I am not happy in our marriage but I feel like I’m stuck. We have a 10 year old and twin 3 years olds, I don’t have a job or a place to go. I have no friends and I can’t stay with my mom(she has her own issues). Everything inside me is screaming that in order for me to be happy I have to get away from this marriage, but I feel like I can’t. I’m scared that I will not be able to take care of my kids. I am also afraid that he won’t let me take the kids. He has never been physically abusive but recently when we start arguing he threatens that he will get violent with me, so now I’m scared of that too. I feel like I keep coming up with reasons not to leave. I know that it will be hard but how do you leave someone and keep your sanity at the same time?
Often, men become withdrawn because their life isn't what they anticipated it would be. If you feel this may be a contributing factor in how your spouse is feeling, create new experiences for you two to share in. Surprise him with a week away or arrange for him to participate in something that he loves to do, whether it's working out at the gym or restoring an old car. Sometimes when a man has something new and exciting to focus on, it will change his entire attitude and you'll start to see his sunny disposition shining through again.
2. Respect yourself: Sometimes negligence is the issue, but other times we get too far on the other end of the spectrum. Putting your partner first 24/7 is a great way to burn yourself out and kill the passion in your relationship. Don’t be a doormat, and don’t let yourself go trying to do everything for him. Confidence is attractive, and taking care of yourself is a must.
Wow, a lot going on here. My sense is that your husband may be depressed (or at least dysthymic) and that a lot of his negative thinking flows from that. Or, if not depressed, significantly unhappy, as he says himself. There may be one thing, or just a few things, that have landed him there that he either hasn't acknowledged to you, or hasn't even acknowledged to himself. Resetting expectations is a powerful technique to enhance resilience and reduce suffering (I discuss it at length in my book, The Undefeated Mind), and can be done without it meaning that "the world has won." That he's had 6 jobs in the last 13 years and that you sense he's always been "searching for something and simply not finding it" suggests he may be trapped in what Buddhism calls the world of Hunger. At the heart of this state of life lies a belief that if only we could fulfill our desires (whatever they happen to be) we will find long-lasting happiness. But of course, no desire provides that, so such people find themselves trapped feeling continual dissatisfaction with life in general. If he hasn't tried therapy, I'd strongly suggest it. He may have reconciled himself to life of minimal enjoyment, but you clearly haven't. If he won't do it for himself, perhaps he will for you and your daughter. Good luck.
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.
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.
Where and how do you start getting healthy and letting go? You try different things until you find what works for you. Maybe a marriage counseling program will help. Maybe you need to do something, such as changing your life — perhaps by moving to a different city, traveling, or getting individual counseling. Some people find physical spa treatments helpful, or alternative therapies such as reiki or energy healing.
The second thing that occurred to me is that you may be making excuses to stay where you are. Sometimes we’re afraid to make big changes in our lives, or tackle big confrontations with people, so we revert to “protecting” them….when we’re really just protecting ourselves. I don’t know if this is what you’re doing, but it is something to be aware of.
If your married and you go and listen to your Husband’s ex’s what is this a sign of??? My marriage is about to end and my wife has let my 3 ex’s into our marriage… She said that she was a woman of GOD but who does this… Do you find this action immature at some point… Then she did bring in baggage from an early marriage etc… We could never talk after she started talking to them… She said it was better to talk with them than me… So I left the house… She has 4 kids that I was taking care of that were not mine… She never looked at this… Each night was about the ex’s etc… I grew tired of this abuse and I felt it was time to move on… Then the looking in my phone… Then asking me why I don’t cheat on her etc… When her ex’s all 3 did cheat on her… Give me your thoughts please of what is wrong with her because she thinks she is perfect and nothing is wrong with her… I am the problem…
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."
It's normal to feel a twinge of jealousy whenever you think about your single friends going out there and doing whatever they want, talking to different guys and flirting with anyone without guilt. But if you feel that way most of the time, that's a sign that you're looking for something different than what you have. Pay attention to how often you feel jealous of their lifestyle.
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.
How can you tell your partner is not thrilled about being together? What are the clues that he or she is unhappy in your relationship? Though there are some outright hints, sometimes it can be tricky to tell. Secret unhappiness in a relationship is totally scarier than obvious grief, because it could be happening and you might not even know about it. Freaky! As they say, we are most scared of the things we cannot see. Or the only thing we have to fear is fear itself, whatever.
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???
I’m going to take the assumption that you’re already in a relationship with this man… At which I ask you this: If you have to ask if happiness is possible, haven’t you already answered your own question? I’m not going to say definitively whether or not your happiness is possible with this person, but you have to ask yourself the question of whether or not you’re currently happy. If the answer is no… well… you should probably consider ending things sooner rather than later. You shouldn’t have to change who you are in order to find your happiness. Additionally, who you're with shouldn’t be the source of your happiness, but rather an amplification of it. In order to be truly happy, you must first be happy on your own. Your significant other is NOT a person to fill the void in your life… they’re a person to share your WHOLE life with.
A sign that your husband is unhappy is if he shuts down and doesn't seem to care about anything. If in the past the two of you used to argue about something, but now all he does is shrug and say "whatever," this could be a sign that he has given up and no longer feels emotionally invested in the marriage. Going hand in hand with this is that your husband might appear to have no life left in his eyes or spirit in his voice.
Every human heart is like a vessel. It longs to be filled to full capacity, but it can only be filled satisfactorily by the love of God. If your spouse’s heart is not complete by a relationship with Jesus then they will always be lacking. For a time they may try to fill that void with you, and when that doesn’t work they may try to fill it with pornography or even with another woman. This is not your fault, and we as women must realize this.
"People mistakenly believe that they shouldn't ask for what they want from their partner, when in actuality it is the best way to communicate and get what you want from your relationship. Your partner shouldn't expect you to meet all their needs—expecting someone to 'complete' you is a romantic idea but not a healthy one. But healthy couples do work together to make sure the most important needs are being met." —Clark
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."