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My story is similar to many other stories here. Married for 27 years with two grown children. And although it will not sound like it after you read this, we have had a ‘great’ marriage with lots of love, hugging, etc. The kids occupied much of our free time and until we became empty nesters in 2011. I am very touchy feely and communicate a lot, she not so much.

We have hurt each other during our marriage (Back in the mid 90’s I started it all by having an affair and she then had her own). She asked for a divorce then and I moved out for several months then she changed her mind (the kids were young so I am sure that was major influence on that decision).

We had several other incidences along the way. At the beginning of 2012, I felt she had a friendship that was getting too ‘friendly’ so I confronted her…. (You know the story – but eventually I realized that at least at this time there was nothing more than a friendship). She again asked for a divorce in March 2012 and after 3 months of reviewing the D papers, she changed her mind again. During those 3 months that the D-papers were being reviewed we had the best sex we have ever had!

I love (adore) my wife, I know I have made some major mistakes and so has she, I have apologized over and over again for all I have done, however she, being a very strong woman has never apologized. The situation now is that the divorce or separation is not in the picture, we sleep in the same bed, we kiss hello and goodbye, but she wants no sex. She has told me to that I can have sex out of the marriage, which she has said before and it bit me in the butt – so I learned from that.

But the most concerning issue is her non-caring, disconnected, no emotion, go do your own thing, attitude. Like I said I love this woman, I am sure she does not love me right at this time; I want to try to get her to emotionally re-connect with me. I am trying to give her some space by doing “my thing” which is not much after 27 years, but I am afraid that even that is going to be turned against me eventually.

Again my goal is to improve my marriage and get her to reconnect – any advice will be welcome…. I WILL NOT GIVE UP!
 

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Every time you detach from her, she wants you back. Do you see a pattern here?
 

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Again my goal is to improve my marriage and get her to reconnect – any advice will be welcome…. I WILL NOT GIVE UP!
Don't ask her permission.

Simply Live the type of marriage you want.

Keep inviting her to join you in it.
 

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She has seen what it is like to be on her own and didn't like it, so now she's content with living with you as a roommate, but not as husband and wife.

My guess is that if you venture outside the marriage, even with her "permission", it won't fly. Either that or she has already ventured out on her own.

For one thing, stop apologizing. Once is enough. After that, it's just begging for her deeming you are worthy to keep around.

If she wants to keep the marriage this way, let her know you WILL be looking elsewhere. I bet she won't like that.
 

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First, figure out how you are contributing to the problem and quit doing it. I don't think there is a man alive that doesn't distress his wife in some fashion. Figure out what that is for you and quit it. This is not about what you are not doing, save that for later.

Next, make at least a hundred (preferably more) honest direct attempt to connect with her every day. If and when you don't get the response you're looking for, ignore it and try again later
 

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Hi Roy ~ Congrats on being married for 27 years! Though you've described some rough times in your relationship, I think it's great that you and your wife have been together so long. I admire your committment to your marriage :)

I can understand that things must be frustrating for you right now. You mentioned that you are a physically affectionate person... I wonder what your wife's love language is? I work at Focus on the Family, and today they had a humorous radio program discussing love languages - I encourage you to check it out on their website.

Also, there are some articles on "Communication and Conflict" that could be helpful to you. Focus also has counselors available to speak with you by phone (for free), that's something you could also consider. Hope this helps.

I will pray for you and your wife. God bless you!
 
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