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My wife and I have been married for over ten years and have two children ages 13 and 9. Throughout our marriage we have always been affectionate toward each other and have enjoyed spending time together either alone or with our children. About two years ago I started to notice that my wife didn't seem as into spending time with me as she had been and she seemed to be bothered by my showing affection. I really didn't think much of it, so I asked her to try and make it a point to go out just the two of us more often, and she agreed. Not too long after that she started going out more with her friends, her brother, etc. Not necessarily alot, but more than before, and still no more with me. About a year ago she quit talking to me at night after work, usually not even bothering to say "Hi Honey" when I get home from work (which she used to do every night.) I am a quiet person and don't like a lot talking, but the conversations we have are yes/no conversations, and our total talk time at night is probably less than 2 minutes. She blamed all her meetings at work for not being conversational, but at the same time mentioned how much she wanted to get onto Facebook to get in contact with people she never cared to stay in touch with before. The lack of communication and time together has really frustrated me and I'm getting really pissed off. I have sat down to talk to her, but she doesn't think there is a problem. Last fall we had planned to take a short vacation to celebrate an accomplishment at work, but when it came down to booking, she didn't want to commit to any specific dates, always finding an excuse why the dates wouldn't work. She relunctantly agreed to go when I finally told her how important it was to me. Our spring vacation was cancelled because she would always find an excuse why the dates wouldn't work (I feel like she was willing to go until the other couple had to cancel and realized it would be just the two of us.) Financially we are comfortable, so I know it's not a money issue. I feel like she constantly is choosing anyone but me. There's so much more to say, but I'm rambling.
 

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Ask her if she is happy in the relationship. Ask her if she still feels the spark. Be ready to read and understand more about your marriage.

I think she is just bored with the relationship and the spark has faded for her. Do the online five love language quiz. Just Google for it. Find out what hers are and do that.

Relationships fail at about 5 years if high conflict and about 10 if the spark dies and people get bored and stop putting work into it. You were right in trying to fix it, but you need to shake things up and get out of the rut.

she needs to recommit, but there is always a chance she will just drift away and not care to connect again.
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Not to sound like a jerk, but find out if she's having an affair-she is showing some classic red flags.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Originally I considered the fact that there may be someone else. We still are "intimate" with each other when our schedules cooperate. Besides that with two kids involved in sports and activities, I honestly don't know where she would find the time and when she does go out, it's usually a group of girls at a friends house having wine (Most of the women have husbands that I know through the kids' activities and a few of the girls couldn't keep something like that a secret). She does have high school friends that I don't trust, but she doesn't see them very often. I am trying very hard to plan things for us to do together, but it seems like the more I try, the poorer my results. I realize that she may be seeing me as desperate, but I don't want to just give up. The problem is, it's driving me crazy and I am starting to notice the smallest differences in how she treats me and I can feel myself getting a little bit more bitter every time.
 

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Not to sound like a jerk, but find out if she's having an affair-she is showing some classic red flags.
Agree. Check that Facebook activity. Make a list of the friends for future reference.
She could be having an EA over the internet. Most affairs are with co-workers. Dome folks just flat find the time for affairs.

It sounds like you are having sex but check this blog out anyway:

http://www.marriedmansexlife.com/

It is really about more than sex. It is about keeping your wife interested in you period.

Hopefully it is just about you guys having drifted apart. You do need to pull this together with no delay. It sounds like you are trying. You need to have more heart to heart toalks with her. You must find the time. If things are just so busy that there is not time for an affair the affair you don't have time for is the one with your wife. She may herself be overwhelmed with work and family.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I feel like I'm trying too hard to win her affection. She thinks we have been away alone too much as of late, but I can't believe that. I have even gone to the trouble of planning nights out for just the two of us, and she finds reasons why we should just stay home. As far as letting myself go, I work out 2-3 times/week and watch what I eat. I'm in better shape now than when we go married, I'm just 40 instead of 27. She has gained some weight, but I still think she is very attractive. It's just disturbing to me that she doesn't like me grabbing her butt like I used to or having me tell her how hot she looks. Why is it that women find a "good" boy boring, it seems she sees my love for her and my children as being weak. I want to be home to spend time with my kids and be there for their activities. That doesn't mean I'm not a man, just a good father. If that is the case she is making a huge mistake.
 

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If it isn't an affair then she's "emotionally checking" out of the marriage. Her behavior is not what I would classify as "usual". Most women would love the attention of their husbands.
 

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I feel for you, bro. Read here, and learn. The 180, and Manning Up.

I was a LOT like you 2 years ago... right about the time my wife started her emotional affair. I scoffed at your comment about her finding the time to conduct an A... it is amazing what WW can do to find time when they want to. Your wife currently doesn't want to find time for you.

Get in front of this. Consider her IN at least an EA, on her way to a PA... or in one already. Consider it your job to stop it. Either find it out, expose it, and deal with it, or stop it from happening because she's mentally already checked out. There's always a reason. Find that reason and change it. It doesn't mean you've done anyting wrong, but there's at least not enough right to keep her "in it".

Decide what you want. To live like this? I think not. But... be prepared to deal with discovering highly unpleasant information (her feelings and/or her actions), and plan for what you will do when confronted with it. I STRONGLY suggest insisting on marriage counseling. If she doesn't feel the need for it, make her go anyway for the sake of the marriage. Draw strong lines; insist. Be the man and take charge. She's got to understand the severity of your feelings here, and the dangerous path you're already on.

And if you read enough here, you will find consistent stories about trusting one's gut... trust yours to take action.

Good luck.
 

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Ask her if she is happy in the relationship. Ask her if she still feels the spark. Be ready to read and understand more about your marriage.

I think she is just bored with the relationship and the spark has faded for her. Do the online five love language quiz. Just Google for it. Find out what hers are and do that.

Relationships fail at about 5 years if high conflict and about 10 if the spark dies and people get bored and stop putting work into it. You were right in trying to fix it, but you need to shake things up and get out of the rut.

she needs to recommit, but there is always a chance she will just drift away and not care to connect again.
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I agree with you in this situation because I WAS ONCE THIS WIFE. I never cheated, never once thought about, never had a Face Book or My Space account, a cell phone, or an individual e-mail account. I was just beyond feed up about how I was treated. My husband NEVER spoke my love language. He met none of my needs as time went on. I fulfilled two of his needs--sex and maid service. That's definitely a good way to kill that "in love" feeling.

Snidley, you may want to take a long at what's really going on in your relationship. Maybe you will then find answers--since you say an affair isn't to blame.
 

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Not to sound like a jerk, but find out if she's having an affair-she is showing some classic red flags.
On the other hand, Snidley, could it be depression?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I have wondered if it is depression also. Her job is secure for now, but may not be in the future (next 2 years), and the company she works for is making a lot of cutbacks. I 'm self-employed and have reassured her if the axe falls on her, we will be just fine. That is part of the communication problem we are having. She comes home at night and doesn't want to talk about work at all, the most I can drag out of her are yes and no answers. I'm just worried because she used to tell me about everything that happened at work, now nothing. Once when I asked what has been going on between us and why she won't talk about work, she began to cry. It seemed odd she would get so upset about her job. This was a red flag to me. Before the communication breakdown, she had begun to complain about her boss stopping by her desk, and talking all the time. But I have met this man, and other than the fact that he makes more money than her and is her superior, I don't see any reason she would be interested in him. I'm at a loss. All the signs point toward another guy, but I really don't see where she would be able to find the time during the week, and weekends she spends with our family. The company she works for is a Fortune 500 company, and security is so rigid, I don't see how anything physical could be going on at work. Again, much of our problem stems from her shutting me out.
 

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I think it was Ben Franklin who said something along the lines of if a man knows that he will be hanged in a fortnight, it will concentrate his mind absolutely.

Perhaps it is stress about the job, but don't completely rule out the possibility of an affair.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
827,

Just to clarify, when you said "I WAS ONCE THIS WIFE", were you referring to my wife's perspective of our situation. It's unclear whether you are saying it's how I treat her or how she treats me that is similar to your situation. Thanks.
 

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827,

Just to clarify, when you said "I WAS ONCE THIS WIFE", were you referring to my wife's perspective of our situation. It's unclear whether you are saying it's how I treat her or how she treats me that is similar to your situation. Thanks.
I was referring to that big, opening paragraph where you describe your wife's behavior towards you. Hence, I was once that wife.... I have no idea how you treat your wife. And I have no way of knowing your wife's perspective. I can only acknowledge that my behavior was very similar and offer suggestions (from my perspective) as to where you may want to look.
 

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827,

Thanks for the reply. Any suggestions would be great. To give you a little background, I think I contribute my share to the household. As it stands I'm doing about half the housework. The only thing I don't do alot of is running the kids after school, because I am still at work. I do get them up in the morning and get them ready for school, but I realize that is much less hectic than the after school running. When we have had discussions about what may be going on, I have asked if she felt I was helping out enough and my wife has said I do alot around the house. She has even told me I am not doing anything wrong-she has said everything is fine, but deep down I can feel something has changed.
 

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I really recommend you read The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman. If possible, get your wife to read it. There's also an on-line test which goes along with the book. It will definitely identify what makes each of you feel "loved". Right now your wife is detaching and not feeling very loved.

Also, your wife may be silently overwhelmed by stress. That was also part of my problem as well. After meeting with my therapist and psychologist (jointly) yesterday, I now know how detrimental stress can be. "When I was that wife", I had so much stress in my life. It was unbearable. I suffered quietly while the anger, resentment, and bitterness raged within me. There are ways to alleviate the stress--address them now. Insist on counseling if necessary.
 

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I would do two things. First, install a keylogger on her computer and review what she types, and check the phone records for calls/texts to any particular numbers a lot. Your marriage is in serious jeopardy, and IT needs you to investigate. For your whole family's sake. Chances are fair she's been communicating with one of her male high school buddies and you have no clue; even if she hasn't gone down the EA/PA path, such conversations may have got her longing for her freedom and life as a single grownup as opposed to being stuck with you guys. (Does she keep her phone with her, or does she just leave it hanging around?)

Two, go to marriagebuilders.com and print out the Love Buster and Emotional Needs questionnaires (avoid their forums; they're toxic). Sit down with her this weekend and ask her to fill them out. It will tell you what she's really thinking and show you where YOU need to make changes to make her happy again and NOT resentful. That is, assuming she's not cheating.
 

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I think it was Ben Franklin who said something along the lines of if a man knows that he will be hanged in a fortnight, it will concentrate his mind absolutely.

Perhaps it is stress about the job, but don't completely rule out the possibility of an affair.
I think it was Samuel Johnson, but he wasn't wrong.
 
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