It is frustrating when you’re doing everything you can to be a good husband, and yet you’re treated badly and betrayed. I don’t know your situation and I’m worried that you mentioned taking your own life. I don’t know how to help you, other than to encourage you to try to find people in your own situation. A support group for dads or separated men, perhaps? I don’t know what you need.
"Sharing bucket lists, and making them together, is a great way to get to know each other," Masini told INSIDER. "When your bucket lists are compatible, and you can see yourself supporting your partner's bucket list wishes, and you see them supporting yours, you're in a relationship that can go the distance. But, if you and your partner think each others' bucket list wishes are crazy and don't have a place in the relationship — then this isn't 'the one.'"
Being the friend or partner of someone who has huge mental or emotional issues takes it’s toll on you. Only a martyr or a doormat will stay for the abuse though, and I am neither. It was very sad, I wish him the best, and I hope he does find someone who will put up with his erratic rollercoaster behavior. I also hope she sees it WAY faster than I did, so she can make her decision before she falls in love with him. And I hope she is the type who feels good about dedicating her life to someone else, because she will never count. The disorder will always come first.
Obviously I don't know your situation, but it sounds like it truly sucks. I don't know your background. What made you fall in love, how well did you know your husband before your married, why did you marry, etc. I'm sure that your husband loves you very much but he has clearly lost his way. I don't know why he seeks solitude but there may be a better reason than you suspect. I don't know why he is emotionally detached but I'm sure that it's not your fault and that the reason is anything other than what you might imagine it to be. All that being said, and giving him the benefit of the doubt, you need to go together to see a marriage counselor as soon as possible. They speak to lots of couples in similar situations and I believe that they can help you find out why your husband acts the way he does and how to help. You both need to focus on strengthening your relationship. This effort should take priority over your kids. They need you two to love each other and be happy together because you are their model of true love.
You mentioned someone going through a period of suffering in their life that they need time to get through (so this suffering is not permanent) and individuals who might have frequent dips in mood. I have a question about individuals who have a condition they have been affected by for a long time and will probably stay with them for the rest of their life. My mother has had what appears to me to be borderline personality disorder and/or bipolar disorder for the past 23 years since I was born. How much responsibility is placed on the person for their behavior who has difficulty controlling their moods? My mother can obviously control her behavior around strangers (maybe she is around strangers in times of better mood), but I see her take out her emotions, problems, aggressions in private on her caregivers (my grandfather and grandmother). She is not able to take responsibility for her actions at all and is not expected to by her caregivers. Is this appropriate? Is it appropriate to forgive her behavior in every instance? Or to hold her accountable for her actions? Should her rude behavior, explosive emotions, inability to listen be excused as something she has no control over? Or should the person be held accountable for certain aspects of her behavior? This is difficult for me to deal with because my emotions in response to her behavior when I am around her get discounted by my grandparents because they use the model where she "is not able to control herself at all so she must be forgiven in all circumstances". Is this model of forgiving every circumstance appropriate? Thank your for your response.
Great article Steve, one of the best I have read so far on GMP. It applies to more than just marriages, it includes all depending on others for happiness. One of the consequences that can flow from going the change route to be responsible for your own happiness is that it can mean the end of your relationship which may have been a reality regardless. To minimise the risk of this you need to consider how you will effectively communicate your change needs with your partner and be prepared for negotiation around a win win solution. This also might require… Read more »
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.
One warning sign would be that your relationship is totally sexless, says sex and relationship therapist Megan Fleming, Ph.D. — or if you're having sex less than 10 times a year. After all, she says, it's intimacy that separates a romantic relationship from all other sorts of relationships you might have. "When that's going out the window, it's a really big red flag." Jane Greer, relationship therapist and author of What About Me? Stop Selfishness From Ruining Your Relationship, says that a lack of visible physical affection — like kissing or hugging — is also indicative of a real problem.