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To be or not to be. . .

2094 Views 6 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Rough Patch Sewing
I have been married to a tattoo artist for 7 years now. Things have been rocky for the entire marriage and it feels that we have fallen out of love. I'm not sure if we are still in the learning curves of marriage, or if this relationship is actually doomed.
Here are a few of the issues:
I feel that I lack attention from him. I don’t get the hugs and affection from him that I would like, or that I would picture a happy marriage to be. I’m scared that my expectations may be unrealistic for a marriage.
i.e.: random sex, random displays of affection, kissing, romantic settings, celebrations of anniversaries, sweet nothings just to save he’s thinking of me, text/call once during the work day just to touch base, help around the house (everything, including turning on the heater for the season and yard things, are left to me and me alone), etc.
Porn became an issue in our marriage, not because I don’t approve it within us together, but because he was only doing it alone. He’s made it a point to still have magazines no matter how it makes me feel. I don’t want to have an issue towards those items, but there’s something about how he makes me feel about myself that doesn’t let me be comfortable with him and those items. As a result, I started feeling awkward toward even his “likes” on facebook of half-naked women.
I feel that as a married couple with no kids, we should be having the time of our lives. However, we have not done anything worth recognizing and our sex life has come down to maybe 1-2 times every two weeks.
Distance has grown in our relationship. After 7 years, shouldn't we have a closer relationship? Is it normal for a marriage to go through a stage of not being in "like" of each other?
We have been discussing divorce, but no firm answer has been made. I'm on the fence about it because I care for him, but like I told him, I feel that we stay together out of comfort.
Need advice, please help. . . I'm confused.
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You say you are discussing divorce, did you discuss working on things at any point along the way? Maybe suggested or tried counseling? Is he just as disturbed by distance as you are?
There are a ton of books out there that you could work on together to improve things. but they'll only work if you are both determined to make it work. There's also MC, but you have to find the right one - some do more harm than good.

Marriage takes work to work for both partners to be happy. It doesn't just happen.
We have tried to work on things but some times I feel alone in the effort. I have gone through counseling alone for the last 4 years. He had no interest. I had also wanted to read a book named the 5 Love Languages. He also had no interest.
Please forgive me, I think I'm having trouble relaying my situation. I feel that I maybe feeling alone in our marriage. I don't feel a connection. He also has shared with me that he feels like he can't be himself, that he too feels alone. The rest of the time we are just trying to get along. We are married but more like roommates. I was thinking of a better way to describe my feelings of the marriage and what came to mind was comparing it to a hole. It seems that we dug a hole with each fight and as time goes on it gets deeper. When we're okay, we just cover it with a rug which we must be careful not to step too close because we'll fall back in. I feel truly sad, and broken. I want us to be okay but I think the hole is too deeper.
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Undermining your confidence by turning to porn when you are available is disrespectful. He is clearly inattentive to your needs and his disinterest in fixing things a betrayal of his commitment to you.

There are many things a marriage can overcome, but long-term success without commitment and respect is pretty tough.

He said he "can't be himself." What do you think he means by that?
Blunt questions here. Do you think your husband is lazy relationally?

Or, he does not know how to connect emotionally?

Or, he needs something from you first that will kick him into gear?

If you do not know that answer, try asking him if there is something that he needs in this marriage that he is not getting.

You know what you are not getting. You are motivated to fix the marriage problems. He has not shown the same motivation.

Perhaps all of these questions are really being eclipsed by him having a porn addiction. Do you think that may be the case?

If he is only doing it alone and it appears to be his substitute and it helps him create a fantasy world, then he may be stuck in that fantasy.

I hope that things do get better for the two of you.
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Was he always this disconnected emotionally/relationally (degree of severity) from you?
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