What Is Wrong With Our Marriage – Trouble In the Bedroom

Do you ever find yourself looking at your relationship and asking, “why am I not happily married?”

Is your sex life deteriorating?

Do you ever stare at yourself in the mirror each morning and wonder “where did it go wrong?”

where did it all go wrong with him

Do you find yourself asking, “why is my husband so clueless. He acts like he doesn’t even notice that our marriage isn’t working.

Is it worth hanging on?  What should I do?” you might ask yourself.

When you look around do you see signs of an empty, perhaps even a sexless marriage in which neither of you are doing enough to solve the problems.

Is the relationship between you and your husband (or wife) becoming more strained?

growing apart from him

That’s a lot to chew on isn’t it?

So let’s go back to the part about troubles in the bedroom because it is there where we will learn about a bigger truth.

Do you and your husband have issues around sex?

Do you feel somewhat pressured to go along with having sex, just to get it over with?

Does he complain about not being satisfied?

Are You Stuck in a Loveless Marriage?

Or are their other types of sexual compatibility troubles?

There is not always agreement on the cause of sexual or intimacy issues in a marriage.  Sometimes, there are two different viewpoints that are advanced and it often breaks down according to gender.

Is the problem in the bedroom due to you not getting enough sex (one guy’s perspective) or is it because you are not receiving sufficient emotional support and tenderness in the marriage thereby causing lovemaking to become mechanical and uninspiring (one woman’s perspective)?

Without a doubt, this is not an easy topic to navigate because there are a lot of variables at play and we are dealing with such an intimate and vulnerable act.

But we are going to forge ahead and you will learn that the secret of great love making is about something very fundamental.

We Are Having Bedroom Issues In Our Marriage –  I Don’t Know What To Do

he doesn't desire me

There are plenty of marriages out there that are falling way short of realizing a deep and complete sexual bond.

And just about every one of them can make improvements.

If you are dealing with a sexual issue of some kind, then the first thing you should realize is that the quality of your sexual bond with your spouse (i.e. your willingness to  frequently participate and enjoy sex with your partner) in many ways is connected to how you and your partner engage with each other in other parts of the marriage.

Talking, touching, showing tenderness, listening, expressing understanding, offering empathy and exhibiting kindness….these are all things that connect us and facilitate wonderful sexual experiences.

The trick is that these things need to happen with consistency before the sex act.

OK,  so it’s not really a trick.

That is a bad choice of words!

Doing those things I described above are foundational.  Without them, you and your lover will be missing out on a lot of good sex.

Intimacy Troubles In The Bedroom

A woman came to me the other day and told me she and her husband were having problems in bed.

My approach was not to ask first about their sex life.   Delving into matters of how they optimized arousal and attraction is seldom a good place to start.

I have written a book about boosting arousal so I could talk all day about that topic.  But that is not really where you want to begin when seeking to understand what might be the crux of their intimacy issues.

How To Turn On Your Lover

I prefer to take a more holistic view of things around sexuality and arousal.

You almost always have to peel back some of the layers of the marriage to see what is really going on.

Most often, the central issue resides not between the sheets, but rather it is what is happening during the course of the day when husband and wife are interacting.

Let’s me give you an example.

Let’s say you come to me and tell me there is something wrong with your marriage.  You explain that things between you and your husband have been bad for awhile. You say leaving this bad marriage is not an option.

You want to make it better.  You want everything to be better because you love your husband and you want him to be happy, but you also hunger for fulfillment.

Not just sexual fulfillment, but you want to be happily married in all respects.

You cry and wonder out loud, “why do good marriages suddenly go bad?”  You plead for clarity to focus on those things to make it better. “What am I doing wrong in my relationship“, you ask out loud?

Is my husband dissatisfied with me and our sex lifeHe won’t say? All I know is I feel him slipping away, becoming disinterested in me.  He seems angry and turned off.  Have I rejected him to often?  We are not always on the same page when it comes to our sex life.  I want him back, but I want him to change too because he isn’t always there for me.

Is the sexual connection between these two the problem?

Should we strip bare what these two are doing in the night, analyzing each step and stage of their lovemaking process?

Or is there something else that is creating this dysfunction?

Where The Marriage Took the Wrong Turn

marriage gone awry

So let’s continue this story.

You have already put a lot of yourself into the marriage, seeking to make it the best it can be.  You know it’s imperfect.

You are not a quitter and just because something is off with your marriage, doesn’t mean you are going to throw it into the dumper and start again.

Sore spots in a marriage can arise easily.

Issues around sexual chemistry and agreement on frequency are matters that almost all couples face.

Connecting With Your Spouse

We just don’t throw in the towel and start looking for someone else.

But it is not always about the mechanics of the sexual act.  And chemistry between two lovers is born from things that happen way before they climb into bed with each other.

Relationships are not inherently easy.  We have to work at them.  We have to find the right match in order to optimize success.

Two people who come into each other’s lives and commit to joining together emotionally and physically….hey that is always easy to pull off and make work for the long haul.

Eventually, the couple will go through rough patches and some bad relationship routines will begin to form.

But I am getting a little ahead of myself because to fully appreciate how you and your husband came to be where you are in the relationship, we need to turn the clock dial back again and get a sense of how things came to be.

How It All Started

our fairy tale beginning

Let’s assume you are a woman reading this.

Let’s say you meet a man and you fall deeply in love.  Both of you adore the other. You do all the things lovers do. Sex is great. Happiness and glory is spilling out of you both.  You see nothing but a great future.

This would be the beginning of the bond in which the two of you seek to become one.

Once you have invested a part of your soul into your mate, not to mention your dreams and aspirations, a bond is formed.

Hopefully you chose wisely, because like it or not, this is where you planted your flag and we all know that going back and retracing your steps to start over again is no picnic.

But in almost all marriages, these early happy days will be later followed by the days of becoming the married drones.


What was that?

Married drones?

What is that, you might ask.

Let me make it clear.  I am not a pessimist.

But in my experience, almost every couple goes through various marital stages,  with the drone period of marriage being the most common.

The best way I can demonstrate this is taking you through an imaginary stream of consciousness.

So imagine that the excitement of the married life you first entered into, sort of peels away and gives in to the steady, drone like beat of:

wake up, it’s another day, let’s get on with our morning chores.  Let’s get dressed and go to work.  Who is dropping off the kids.  Why do I always feel rushed for time?  I still don’t feel good about what he said last night.  I am pushing that out of my mind right now. Goodness, it’s already time to go.  Let me quickly grab a hug and kiss.  Off we are to the races.”  

Finally you get home and hope that you are not too tired or stressed to enjoy your evening.  Then something bad happens and you say to yourself:

“Ouch, we had a bit of fight tonight.  I wish things were better. He never listens and seems distant.  I don’t want to talk to him anymore about this.  It’s always ends up the same.  I think I am getting a little angry here. Oh well, I will deal with it later. OK, let’s make some food.  Gee, we are not talking much.  I am feeling a little sad. He wears me out.  Let’s turn in for the night.  It would be nice to have some makeup sex, but I really don’t want to.  I know he wants sex, but I am not feeling it.  I forgot something.   I am going to have to get up early to do it.  Oh, look how late it is. I hope I can sleep.  I wonder what he is thinking.  My goodness, it’s morning already.”

So like drones or some scene in the movie Groundhog Day, we just keep reliving a lot of the same things.

Doing the same things.

Making the same little mistakes of not resolving little hurts or spending quality time with our partner and working through little resentments.

The negative entropy acting on the marriage can slowly takes its toll.  Meanwhile, we just keep falling back into our regular, clockwork like routines.

As another day has dawned, we wake up to face yet another series of routines and off we go into our own little worlds only later to be joined together again, perhaps eager to see each other or possibly fearful of having to deal with an uncooperative, non-supportive spouse.

It really depends on where you are in the marriage.  You could be in the happy and growing stage, the drone stage, the rebuilding stage, or god forbid, the tear it down stage.

Just know that even the best of marriages are vulnerable to each of these stages.

Because that is what we do.  We are creatures of habit.  That can be good or bad, depending on the act or behavior and whether the routines are healthy.

We all try to make things better, but the complexity of our lives and the sometimes fragile nature of our emotions and circumstances can take a toll on the finer workings of our marriage.

And on and on we go.

Do it often enough, without breaking the negative patterns that can too easily form, you too can become a victim of the marriage drone syndrome!

Why Do Couples Lose Intimacy – Has Sex Become a Marriage Chore?

not pleasing him in bed

The trajectory of your married lives can take on predictable patterns.  If you keep a journal or diary, you can actually capture it.  It might read, “yet another day”.

And as I explained earlier, these patterns almost always lead to a period in which your behavior within the marriage can become almost drone like.

You find yourself doing and repeating, in workman like fashion, the same kind of things.

There can be a comfort to this pattern.  Your routines can bring about some efficiency.  They can make you feel safe.

But they can also lead to monotony and a lack of spark in the marriage.  A certain drudgery can take over and define your marriage.

The relationship can become boring.  Listless.  Your marriage can lack spontaneity.  The things you do together can become stale, leading to a decline in the amount of time you spend together because we naturally gravitate to things that we get joy from.

So where do marriages go bad?

Well, there are lots of twists and turns that can lead to trouble.

Let’s talk about the level of sexual intimacy that should exist in a marriage

How are things in the bedroom?

How is your sex life?

Are you satisfied.

Is he touching you and pleasing you in the way you really want him to?

Do you often turn your husband away for reasons that are far too complicated  to tackle here?

Does he seem to lack interest and seldom initiates?

Does he know how to turn you on, often?

Is your husband excited to be with you and do you look forward to every lovemaking opportunity?

Or do you look for ways to escape his clutches?

If there is one telltale sign of a failing marriage, it is usually when you have trouble in the bedroom.

Having really good sex with your husband or wife is usually a reflection of the quality of your marriage.

Not always, but it is a leading indicator.

If you were to take one of those many bad marriage tests or compatibility surveys you can find all over the internet, invariably one of the questions asked is how is he in bed.

OK,  I admit my choice of words might be a bit indelicate.  Usually a marriage assessment or your therapist will ask if you and your husband (or wife) have a satisfying sex life.

If one wishes to get really personal, questions will be asked about how often the two of you engage in sex, who initiates it, what positions you employ, and how fulfilling you find the sex act.

But if your marriage therapist is really smart, they will try to learn about what is going on with the rest of your marriage.

You see what often happens is that a couple can go along for a long time doing all those things that married couples do.  Things like carving out a life for themselves, having children, pursuing individual careers, and chasing after happiness and fulfillment.

After all, that’s what we all live for when you think about it.  As individuals, we seek that which can make us fulfilled and content.  We pull people into our orbit that we enjoy being with.

Which of course leads us to this whole marriage thing, right!

But along the way, the relationship can get off track.  Troubles emerge.

How do you patch it back together?

Where Sex Really Begins

sex really starts with showing love

Let’s say you are a lovely woman, filled with aspirations and anticipation of living the fullest and happiest life you can experience.

Along the way, in this journey you are taking, you meet what you think is a wonderful man.  You get married and you and your husband now join together to tackle this thing we call “life”.

Now since we are all sensual creatures, we enjoy touching and being touched, both physically and emotionally.    So when there are problems in the bedroom it is natural to look at things like technique and style.

I mean, yes, it’s about those things.

To get turned on and excited, there has to be a hunger and a desire and you and your husband (or wife) both need for those sexual hormones to be flowing.  That certainly enhances the experience.  What you do and how you do it makes a difference.

But there is something else that is even more important that has to be in place.

The trigger for great sex usually starts much earlier.

Sexual desire is only optimized if the two of you are doing the other things that makes a couple close.

What I am talking about is the importance of optimizing the emotional connection.  That is what real intimacy is all about.

I am talking about practicing quality communications, offering kindness,  and showing tenderness.  Doing these things consistently throughout the day, each and every day, builds a foundation in which your sexuality can more easily spring forth.

One of my clients, Alice, reached out and asked, “how do I know if I’m in the right or wrong relationship if bedroom issues continue to plague us?  What am I doing wrong between the sheets because I am just not into it with him.  Part of me wants to, but another part just wants to get it over with.  I can sense it and he can sense it and it just makes the whole thing uncomfortable.  I didn’t have this problem with my other sexual partners.  Why are we not clicking?

Essentially she is looking for a way to fix intimacy issues in her marriage.

My point to her was that intimacy starts long before the couples get into bed.  I asked her if she and her husband were having other issues.  We discussed some of  the common marriage problems that can lead to a loss of trust and an erosion in intimacy.

She told me right off what was going on.  She said the whole sex act with him felt mechanical because it was.

The honeymoon phase was long over and the marriage had been rocking along for awhile now.  Sex had turned into something she perceived was more of a duty and part of that was because her husband was not that interested in pleasing her physically or emotionally.

He wasn’t that much into connecting with her on a deep emotional level.  When she would try to talk or even whisper to him before, during or after making love, he would hush her up and just go about his business.

Unfortunately, the intimacy issues were not just isolated to the bedroom.

They had long settled into routines in which it was just accepted that he was not going to be there for her emotionally.  So it was no surprise this problem would follow them into the bedroom.

She explained that he was not a touchy or feely kind of guy.  He took her for granted, seldom making her feel safe or supported when anxious times arrived.

Their life had become compartmentalized.  He did his thing and she quietly suffered the pain of not having a more complete marriage.

So if you are looking for real solutions for why the two of your are not clicking in bed, you won’t necessarily find the answers in sex books.

Where do problems in the bedroom emerge?

It often starts with looking at how the couple connects in other parts of the relationship (e.g. talking, listening, supporting, empathizing, expressions of love and kindness, etc).

If these things are not in play, it can depress one’s sexual appetite.  This is largely what was going on with Alice.

It isn’t strictly about satisfying your man or woman in bed.  That is usually not the origins of sexual intimacy issues.

No matter how much skill you have between the sheets, if your wife (or husband) does not feel a deep underlying connection on many levels, then neither of you will come close to realizing your sexual potential as a couple.

Making Love Throughout The Day

showing the lover every day

Given the header above, you are probably thinking that I am advocating that the solution to problems in the bedroom is that you and your husband should just make love throughout the day, right?

Just get it on all the time, every day, everywhere, right?

Do it on the dinner table.  Make wild, raw, crazy love on the carpet in the middle of the floor.  Do it on the living room couch.

Why not just take your husband and lead him into every room in the house and just do it in every possible way you can think of.

Certainly a rapturous day of lovemaking in every way and every place is going to solve all of your intimacy issues, right?

You will feel the power of each other’s sex drive and magically everything will fall in place, don’t you think?

Well, it all sounds pretty exciting, but I kinda doubt it’s going to be the cure all.

Making love can mean a lot of things.

But it does not necessarily mean that things are going well in the relationship.

There may be be times where the two of you can turn you minds off to the  relationship problems that persist and just get it on.

That is not necessarily a bad thing.

Sometimes, despite the problems that might exist elsewhere in your marriage, these kinds of sexual experiences with your husband or wife can feel really good.

I am not advocating for this kind of sexual expression.

But we should be reminded that when this happens it is our deep sexual needs and hormones that are doing most of the talking.

The more pressing reality is it doesn’t take much to depress the release of such hormones if what is going on between the two of you is not “real”.

If you and your lover are experiencing some unresolved problems in your marriage, then just know that that your sexual experience will fall short of its potential.

We all have the capability within us to consistently have a very satisfying sexual relationship with our spouse

You can get the most out of those hormones if the marriage is solid and the  feelings of intimacy passing between the two of you is natural and heartfelt.

And again, when I speak of intimacy in this respect, I am not referring to sexual intimacy and arousal.  But rather the little and big things you do to make the marriage work on a daily basis.

Things like avoiding conflict, helping and supporting each other, practicing random acts of kindness, showing consideration, touching and embracing each other throughout the day.

So while solving troubles in the bedroom can get complicated depending on the root cause (e.g. sexual dysfunction, erosion of trust due to an affair, lack of experience, etc), more often than not the issue arises from something very basic and critical.

Specifically, it is the ongoing repetition of simple and loving gestures exchanged between husband and wife that leads to satisfaction in the bedroom.

Why Does My Husband Act Like He Doesn’t Love or Care About Me

Today we are going to hear from Kathy whose husband can’t seem to bring him self to find a kind word for her.  When things go south in their marriage, he resorts to name calling and assertions that he doesn’t love her and she doesn’t deserve him.

Do ever find yourself in a situation in which your husband acts in a certain way to make your feel unloved?

Does he act in a way that make you feel he doesn’t care to please you?

Is he ever so brazen or vindictive to tell you he doesn’t want you or feel for you in the same way?

sad times in marriage

A bit later in this article I am going to list out the 10 signs or things your husband might do or say that point to the possibility that his love for you is eroding, maybe even disappearing.

Sometimes these signs of dying love come in the form of constant put downs and cheap shots and other behavior that makes you feel he has nothing but disdain for you.

In some of the worse cases I have seen, it can be like he holds contempt for you and can barely stand  being around you.

Or he may accuse you of holding him back from doing and experiencing other things.  Taken all together, it can feel like he wants to wipe clean away all of the good times the two of you use to enjoy together.

I hear that a lot from some clients about husbands that cut them down in ways to make them feel like the marriage is headed for a wreck.

Sometimes the behavior from the husband is more subtle, but nevertheless piercing in the pain it can cause. For example,  “My husband just told me that his feelings for me have changed and he does care about me like he use to?

Or, “Chris, you won’t believe what husband said about me.  He thinks our love has grown old and it’s harder for him to care about me as he should.  I think it is big cop-out and something else is going on

Are you in a marriage where you husband can’t bring himself to simply tell you he loves you or worse, tells you the opposite….in other words he says he never loved you or has stopped loving you?

Perhaps the signs of his love simply just vanishing over time are to be believed.  What people say and do sometimes are backed by real feeling.

What If He Really Hates Me?

Just maybe your husband’s heart is not in the marriage because he has his heart somewhere else.

But let’s not move too fast.

I have seen plenty of cases where men try to convince themselves and their wife as well, that they don’t love them anymore.  A man can bend himself into an emotional pretzel trying to talk himself out of love.

I see this often when a guy is having an affair and is trying to justify his actions or feelings, not understanding either very well.  I have seen lot of cases of a husband getting caught up in an emotional and physical love affair with another woman and at the same time trying to convince himself that he must not be in love with his wife anymore.

But as it turns out, love is not really as fickle as some people try to make it.  People don’t just fall in and out of love lickety-split.

That sure doesn’t stop a husband from pulling away from his wife.  He can do it in all sorts of ways.

And it need not be an affair that causes your husband to act this way.  A man can withdraw his love or act like he doesn’t care for lots of different reasons.

Are You Married To a Cruel Husband Who Always Puts You Second

can your man get passed your past

Honey, I just don’t want you anymore. I am not the same person.  We have grown apart.  I need to do the things I want to do and you get in my way.  The love between us is just not the same.  You are like a sister to me”, her husband exclaimed.

That sounds cruel doesn’t it?  It sound like a cruel thing for a husband to say because it is.  A husband and wife should never talk that way to each other.

The whole notion that your husband is some kind of new person or has changed in some kind of meaningful way therefore you are not worthy of him is often a crock of bull.

Men or women who talk that way are most often just putting themselves first and putting their spouse second.

Talking this way to your spouse is not simply a bad thing to do because it is poor manners (which it is), but because it is cruel and destructive to the relationship.

When men often put themselves ahead of their wives’ needs or choose to constantly criticize their wife, they are not only showing a warped sense of love, but are likely exhibiting  anarchistic tendencies.

It seems some men can’t throttle back their anger or resentment and choose to reach deep into their bag of ugly wife tricks to try to emotionally injure their spouse.  It may not happen to some of you out there.  But I hear it a lot.

But do you know what I also hear happens a lot?

These same guys who are cutting their wife down in one moment, will try to quickly make up if they think it suits them.  Hence you get the old “back and forth” kind of husband who has a loose relationship with love.

I Can’t Stand This Any More

Now let’s get something straight here right off the bat!  I am not talking about the majority of husbands out there.

Most men understand the importance of expressing love to their wives and not withholding expressions of affection.  They are not mean or vindictive.

some guys are good

This article is aimed at those wives who suffer the pain of wondering if they will ever be loved in the way they deserve.  It is for those who are involved with a man who can’t fight fair and chooses to shoot low.  It is for those ladies who feel unloved, under appreciated, and unsupported.

It is for those women whose husbands some act in such a horrible, hateful way, they are left with the gloomy question of whether it’s still worth trying any more.

So let’s hear and learn from Kathy.  Here is her story and what she chose to do when her husband starting withdrawing from her, withholding intimacy, and failing work on the marriage.

What is wrong with my husband?  He gets mad at me and to hurt me he deliberately withholds his affection.  I see it in his eyes and the way he avoids me.  It is like no fight can be so small that he won’t try to get even with me.

Sometimes I think the truth is my husband has never been in love with me like I thought.  I am not even sure if I want to be married to him.  Honestly, the marriage is a mess.  Like Chris says, we make withdrawals from our trust in each other all the time.  And he is not depositing anything good into our marriage bank.

I use to think that if my husband didn’t care for me anymore, what would I do.  I would have these panic thoughts.  The fear of my husband not loving me or him deciding that I was not enough would royally screw me up.  It would utterly just disable me for days. 

Now I think differently about these things. I realized that he was never going to get to that place where I needed him to be.  I realized my husband was not going to be the loving and caring kind of guy I dreamed he might be or that I could turn him into.  So, yes, I deluded myself for a long time.  6 years to be exact. 

My husband and I went through all those stupid phases.  Once I was the love of his life.  He couldn’t have enough of me.  Everything he did was passionate and romantic, even over the top.  Of course, I soaked it all up thinking that everything he said was 100% true.

It was like crazy good.  Sex was hot and he just couldn’t stop telling me how beautiful I was.  While even those early good days had some nasty bad patches, we got through them fast and my husband would make it up and do something wild and exciting for me.

Part of me knew I was living on the edge of  his unbridled passion.  He was just that way and I went with it.  I always figured that our marriage would flatten out and we would have to work on things.  But I didn’t see this coming. I didn’t expect my husband would turn away from in all the important ways.

The Turning Point For Our Love

when things changed in our life

I mean we had problems. 

A couple of years ago, I had an affair and he found out about later.  It was stupid decision by me.  I happened after we had a particularly big blowup.  I stormed out of the relationship for a few days and slept with an ex.  But it was really short-term and I knew immediately it was wrong and I was jeopardizing my marriage.  It took him a few months to find out, but that is another story.

Maybe that is what the trigger that go us to where we are now.  I don’t know for sure.  He had a revenge affair on me when he found out about mine. Admittedly, I didn’t handle that well.  He was wrong, just as I had make a bad mistake.  But I had never been cheated on before and we almost lost the marriage a few years back because of this incident.

Perhaps neither of us really forgave the other.  With had some sexual problems during that time as well.  He had some difficult with following through on sex with me.  It would upset him and he would then blame me and then new fights would emerge, followed by us both dredging up the past.

So our relationship has been rocking along like this for a while.

But just about one year ago, his enthusiasm for me started to really flatten out.  There were some issues with work and our marriage was going through these ups and downs and he was getting medicated for mild depression.  Then out of the blue he started telling me that we don’t work as a couple anymore.  I pressed him for whether he was cheating on me again.  He denied and if he is, he’s covering his tracks pretty good.

Part of what he was saying was true and I knew we both did things that negatively contributed  to trust and intimacy issues, but I would get upset with him because he just seemed to not want to try.  It was like he was looking for ways to bail out of our marriage and I wasn’t ready for that.

My husband would say stuff like he loves me, but he is not in love with me.  I mean really, what the crap does that mean?  How can he be so sure that he is no longer in love with me.   I would tell him he was being over dramatic and that he is letting his passions run amok.  I would tell him that he was trying to project on to our marriage like we were in some kind of movie where the lovers were doomed.

We would argue, then he would say stuff like he knows all the signs of when a husband truly regrets having married his wife and that he fits them to a tee.

So many stupid things  come from his mouth.  He reads everything and falls for stuff I think. 

We Damaged Our Relationship When We Forgot to Care For Each Other

forgetting to care for each other

Then we would take turns blaming each other. It was like neither of us care that we were damaging our marriage.  My husband would blame me for ruining his life.  I would blame him for screwing up mine.  And we would just keep saying hurtful things to each other.

I mean this didn’t happen everyday.  But I would not be exaggerating much when I tell you that I am at my wit’s end.  I am not sure if I can tolerate any more hurtful words from him.

It’s like he wants our marriage to fail and doesn’t want to work at making it better.  Almost like a marriage death wish.

I even told him that.  I said, ‘you are trying to screw us’ aren’t you?  

Now my husband  says stuff like let’s just put the marriage out of the misery.  I know what he is doing.  He wants to break up.  And I know what I am doing.  I want to prevent the split up.  I am not ready to let it go.  Obviously he is which make me more suspicious that he has someone waiting for him on the other side of separation and divorce.

You see, I don’t believe he knows what he wants.  He keeps telling me he doesn’t love or care for me like he should.  Hearing that hurts, even though I don’t totally believe him. 

Part of me has lost respect for him.  He can also stoop way too low sometimes  Just recently, my husband told me he can’t stand to be around me and that sex with me reminds him of the affair I had.

Now I know that has been a problem for him.  I cheated and I was wrong.  But it happened years ago.  I asked him for forgiveness a long time ago and at that time, after a long while, he finally said I was forgiven.  He even wrote down in a poem and we got along for a spell after that.

But often my husband  just can’t let things go.  So what do you do when your husband of several years tells you that sometimes he can’t stand you for the things you have done and he isn’t sure if he still loves you?

It makes me sick that he turns everything into such a drama.  Just let go of it, I tell him.  He agrees, then he falls right back into his victim world.  Honestly, I think he needs therapy because some of his obsessive hangups are poisoning our marriage.

So after talking with Chris I agreed something meaningful needed to happen to completely change the direction our marriage had taken.  I chose to follow through on the very thing my husband wanted. 

He kept saying we are not working as a couple and that he doesn’t know if we will ever work as  couple again.  So I decide to give him what he wanted.  A way out.

I told him that neither of us were happy and that our marriage was a mess due to a lot of reasons.  I told him there was a cancer growing on our marriage and that was having a horrible and devastating effect.  I suggested we take a 30 day break away from each other so we can both begin the processing of healing.  

Some of the words I used in my discussion with my husband, Chris gave me, but most of what I told him came from my heart.  I was wounded.  My husband was in pain too. 

We both agreed to try talk about our relationship again in the future but not before he moved out temporarily and we both committed on improving ourselves.  Then we would meet to explore whether our marriage and all the good times we have had together was worth trying to get back.

Right now I am in the healing stage.  I am trying some new things out and while I miss the good parts of my husband, I am relieved that I am no longer in an environment where I feel bad about myself and am always feeling like I have to snap back to protect myself. – Kathy K.

 10 Signs That Your Husband May No Longer Love or Care For You in the Same Way

we are lovers no more

As you can see, Kathy is on both a personal and relationship journey.  She still has some work to do.  Both of them do.  Their marriage is very complicated and there are a number of issues they still need to work through.  So let’s wish her well and I will keep tabs on her.

Meanwhile, if you find yourself wondering if the same or similar kind of thing could be happening in your marriage with your husband, let me at least offer you the benefit of what you might want to look for that can clue you in on whether your husband is truly falling out of love with you.

Honestly, there is no perfect list of Signs that can reliably prove that your husband cares less for you and your marriage is headed for a wreck. There is no “my husband is tired of me quiz” that has 100% success rate.  Every relationship will go through some bad times.

Just because the two of you are fighting and ugly words fly back and forth doesn’t mean that it’s time to learn to say goodbye to each other.  The marriage is not necessarily all over just because you think he has stopped loving you.

Far from it.

What you think he feels and what your husband actually feels around the question of love, are not always in agreement.

Your husband may openly question his love for you, yet not even realize the depth in which his life and love is interwoven with your own.

But if you are trying to put together clues that your husband’s heart is no longer in the marriage, consider these behaviors.  If your man is behaving in many of the ways described below, then you may very well have some serious work ahead of you.

Remember, any one of these events, if taken singularly, does not point to the demise of your marriage.    Even if 3 or 4 of these kind of things are happening to you, it doesn’t predict the two of you are on your last legs.

It may simply point to areas of the relationship you both need to shore up.   Don’t forget, a marriage, particularly those that have been around for years, have a lot of built-in traction and staying power.

So let’s get on with.  What are the 10 Signs that indicate your husband thinks of your differently  –  that he doesn’t love you anymore – or that his love for you is changing, drying up.

  1. Your husband has had multiple affairs or continues to cheat on you and he knows that you know about his indiscretions but doesn’t respect you enough to stop.
  2. The man your married is now telling you that he has fallen in love with another woman and that he no longer feels the same way about your marriage.  Just like that he wipes away with that one utterance all your faith and trust.  While you still find your husband’s words unbelievable, he leaves you reeling with this revelation and makes no effort to soften the blow.
  3. Your guy seldom wants to  work on the relationship.  He seems to have little invested interest to make things better and blames you for everything that is wrong with the marriage, with little regard for his own poor behavior.
  4. You and your husband in the past use to talk about everything but for some time now, he seldom wants to talk to you or listen to you.  It is like he is somewhere else and when you complain about it, he does little to change his behavior or gets upset that you keep bringing it up.  It is as if someone has turned your husband’s passion meter completely off and there is nothing left over for you.
  5. He treats you in an abusive and cruel way, using both verbal abuse when provoked and emotional detachment when he wishes to punish you.
  6. Your husband’s emotions are all over the place.  One day he loves you and says lots of sweet and wonderful things; then the next day he can’t stand you and behaves badly and tells you he is not attracted to you.
  7. He keeps telling you that he doesn’t like you or have fun being around.  He seldom remembers important days like your anniversary or to give you a card or gift on your birthday.  Your husband avoids doing things with you and always seems to have an excuse for what he can’t be with you.
  8. He doesn’t want to kiss you or hold you and seldom does he initiate sex.  When the sex is over, he can’t get away from you soon enough.  There little in the way of cuddling or talking and sharing.  The act of sex is mechanical and over with without you being fulfilled.
  9. Your husband acts like you are not even there.  You have become the invisible woman and if he is not outright trying to avoid being around you, he hardly notices you when you are right there
  10. He doesn’t want to sleep with you.  He would rather be alone by himself than be with you in bed. He insists he can’t sleep with you for any number of reasons.  Maybe he complains about snoring or gritting of teeth or that you twist and turn too much.  Or maybe he insists that its him that is bothering you, so he is going to do you a big favor and let you have the bed all to yourself.

In our next article, I am going to talk about how you should go about making sense of these dying love signs and if indeed you should take them seriously.

In other words, is your husband going through a phase?

Is all his talk and actions a big smoke screen because he is hiding some ugly truth?

Could he have actually fallen in love with another woman?   How do you go about weighing the importance of each of these signs or hints that your husband’s love for you could be drying up?

Tune in for my next few articles on this topic to learn more about the sometimes confusing world of love and marriage and please go down to the comments an ask any questions you have or if you have a story you wish to share, I would like to hear it!

Is My Marriage Hopeless or Worth Saving

Today we are going to hear from Sally who has been feeling rather hopeless these days.  She has been married for eleven years and is now seriously questioning whether her marriage is worth saving.

Being involved in a long term marriage and feeling hopeless and questioning whether your relationship is worth saving can be emotionally debilitating.

You spend many years cultivating what you think is going to be a lifelong commitment to a man you fell in love with.  But as the years go by, instead of the love between the two of you growing and blossoming, what if you find your marriage filled with a continuous series of heartaches and disappointments?

Does this kind of life sound familiar to you?

Can Your Hopeless Marriage Be Saved?

looking for help with her man

Is there some way you and your husband can put things back together?

At the time of this writing you may feel desperately at loss as to what else you can do.  You may have tried everything to turn the relationship around.  You may have sought out counseling in the spirit of getting your hopeless marriage restored.  Perhaps you and your husband have had hundreds of heart to hearts over the years.

So what are you to do if you have invested your heart and soul to make your marriage work, yet you look over the years and realize the two of you have essentially gotten nowhere?

Troubled Times With Hubby

And now you have reach a point after years of trying to making the marriage salvageable that you are ready to throw in the towel.  You might even wake up almost every morning wondering when is a marriage really over and whether you should continue to invest in this man who you once found irresistable.

You might even turn to the Lord to help you through these troubled times in the form of a restoring marriage prayer, but to no avail.

You may have even tried meditation as you sought relief and even turned to fasting for marriage reconciliation (note:  Honestly, I am not quite sure how that works, but it has to do with you both committing to and experiencing something difficult to inspire you to join closer together)

But despite all your best efforts, it just seems impossible for the marriage to be restored to those earlier years when things were almost always more light-hearted and conversation was easy and free-flowing.

As you think about the many years you and your husband have been joined together, you can’t help but hold on to a thread of hope that there must be some way to solve the puzzle of how to restore your marriage and fall in love again.

You may have even heard of testimonies from people who have restored their marriages after adultery and that has given you hope.

The Story of One Women’s Marital Woes

feeling trapped with her guy

You see, that is what happened to Sally.

She has been having a rough time of it.

For years, her marriage has deteriorated for all the common reasons like lack of communications, increased conflict, and a poor sexual connection.

Sally was also disturbed by her husband’s unwillingness to make her feel loved, valued and important.  There was little time spent together or talking about shared values and interests.

What Happened To Our Connection?

The years seemed to have just ticked on by and he acted like he had either tired of her or just did not want to invest any of his time with her.

He had gotten all wrapped up into his work and his other commitments and now it seemed like she was living with a ghost of the man she once met.

Are You Married To A Man Who Treats You As the Forgotten Wife?

the lost wife

Sally’s man wasn’t all bad. There were redeeming values. He was a good provider and great father.  In the past, he would occasionally make efforts to listen to her complaints.  He would promise her he too wanted things to get better between them.   But she said it was all a pipe dream.  She complained he was all talk and just said that to put her off.

She admitted that sometimes, the connection between the two of them would actually improve for a few weeks.  He would demonstrate he cared about doing little things she appreciated.  But eventually, his regular routines would resume and she would yet again become the forgotten wife.

When Sally first told me that  “my husband is giving up on our marriage” I could see she was not ready for it to end.  But she was intensely frustrated.  She said he no longer was even trying to go through the motions.  He was not even trying to meet her halfway on working out their problems.

So for many months she has been plagued with the question of how to know when it would be time to leave their marriage.  She certainly wasn’t feeling the love.

She sensed she was just clinging to the habit of being married to a man who no longer loved her.

A New Lover Enters the Picture

a new man in her life

She had met Bill, her new lover, by happenstance at a party she had attended at work.  He too was married and was going through a really rough patch.  He had confided in her that “my wife is giving up on our marriage and I really don’t know what I want to do”.  She immediately felt connected with Bill.  His predicament mirrored her own awful marriage situation.

Being with Bill was like being in love again, she said.  He was good to her and she felt fulfillment.  But she was confused because she still loved her husband.

So with my help, Sally came up with a plan because she was determined to make on last ditched effort to save her marriage.  She still loved her husband and feared that she was losing him.  As we worked through her true feelings she acknowledged that all this talk of her marriage being hopeless and not worth saving or fighting for stemmed from her sense of futility.

She knew she was acting out partly because she was angry and sad and disappointed with her circumstance.  Not to mention that being in love with two men was confusing.  But she also came to understand that nothing good would come from living in a world trapped between two men.

For something to change, action must precipitate it.  So together we came up with an action plan that she could turn to help her navigate what to do next.

If your situation is anything like Sally’s, then this plan will likely hold some merit for you as well. Give it some consideration.

The 5 Steps To Saving Your Hopeless Marriage

turning it all around

1.  Clean Up Your Attitude: How can you be sure your marriage is over?  You can’t be.  So the first step is to clean up your attitude.  Now I realize that you are probably going through some really tough times and I am sure it is taking a toll on you in all sorts of ways.  That certainly could explain a depressed emotional demeanor.  But one central element in overcoming any negativity that may surround you is to remind yourself of all the positive things you have going for you.  Leading with a positive attitude is key to the next steps you should consider taking.

2. Consider a Relationship Wake Up Call:  If you feel  “my husband has checked out of our marriage” and is just not taking any of your concerns seriously, then you should consider a wake up call.  Now what do I mean by that exactly?  Well, it depends.  Let’s say you suspect your man is cheating on you.  Is there a time when you should give up on a marriage after infidelity?   If the affair is still active and he has yet to own up to it, then perhaps it is time for an intervention.  What do I mean by that?  Sometimes to bring things to a head, you need to employ some creative ways to save your marriage.  Or maybe it’s not an affair that is triggering your despair. Maybe the two of you are prisoners of a broken marriage filled with negative habits and routines.  If that is the case, then consider breaking the rotten marriage mold.

Consider telling your husband that you are taking a mini vacation for a few days.  Pack your stuff and get out and away from what you think are his lies or his lack of commitment to work on the marital problems.  Tell him you are seriously questioning the viability of your marriage and need “alone time” to process how you feel about things and what might be next.  Leave it vague.  Let him chew on it. What you are also doing though is taking some time for you self to heal and to think.  Chances are that he may soon start talking and taking your concerns a lot more serious.

3. You Need To Get Centered: How can you know when your marriage is really over?  Are there signs your marriage cannot be saved?  Is the uncertainty of what you should do driving you crazy?  Are you paralyzed with indecision as to when to throw in the towel on a broken marriage?

If you are thinking all these things and more, then it is time to get an accounting of where things stand.  Chances are your view of the whole marriage situation is clouded.  You have heard of the saying, “you cannot see the forest for the trees“, right?  Well, you need some alone time to air out your thoughts.

Go some place that allows you a real opportunity to be introspective about what has been transpiring for all this time.  Is it really as bad as you think?  Is your feelings of hopelessness, triggered by depression or an unrealistic expectation for how your husband should be acting?  The short answer is your husband is probably a far cry from what you need to complete you.  But right now, you are likely trapped in a web of emotions.  So get away.  Go somewhere that allows you to find yourself again.  Think of it as a retreat for yourself.  But you are not retreating or quitting your marriage.  What you want to do is get away from all the chaos so you can objectively think about the strengths and weaknesses your husband brings to this marriage equation.

4. Weigh Your Husband’s Strengths and Weaknesses:  So while you are on your personal retreat and getting your emotions centered again, take advantage of this period where you are seeking some emotional balance.

It’s time to take a hard look at the course of action you wish to take.  But you can’t do that unless you know if your husband is going to be an ongoing catalyst of your marital woes or if he has the capacity to bring about change and work with you to discuss and solve the problems.

So what you are going to do is a Spousal Plus/Delta.  While this exercise may sound fancy, it is actually a common sense way of figuring out what you really want and if your current marriage partner can help you get there.

I don’t mean for this to sound so clinical.  Obviously we are talking about your life and your future. But if you are confused about whether your marriage is worth saving, then you need a process to help you see the bigger picture.

Write down on a sheet of paper or flip chart what it is you want from your marriage.  Think of what you  want your marriage to look like in the future. Imagine an ideal future state of what you marriage would look and feel like if all the right pieces came together.   Then ask yourself honestly what strengths, skills, and competencies your husband offers that can help you arrive at that future state.  On one side of the chart list out all of the Positives.  On the other side of the chart list out the Negatives.

5. Act With Conviction:  Now that you have gotten away and found a little internal peace, you should have arrived at some conclusions as to whether you want to stay on the marriage track you find yourself on.

At this stage, you will have thought through carefully what has transpired between you and your man in the past.  You will have taken the opportunity to assess realistically if your husband’s weaknesses outweigh his good points.  You will have evaluated objectively what you believe to be your husband’s capacity to change based on past events and his expressed level of desire to acknowledge the problems and work with you.  Taking all this into consideration, it is time for you to make a decision about your future.

Summing It All Up

putting it together

Let’s clarify one thing to make sure we are on the same page.

At this juncture of your marriage where things seem hopeless and you are seriously questioning if you want to invest any more time in the relationship, you should have already exhausted efforts to get marriage counseling.

Hopefully your husband agreed to work with you and a Marriage Coach to try to right the ship.  If he chose not to, then obviously that was probably one of the items you listed on your Plus/Delta chart.

Let’s assume he was not open to counseling.  Not all guys are open to this sort of thing.

Then hopefully your husband was open to sitting down with you in the past to work with you on improving the marriage, whatever the problems.  That would have been a “Plus” on your chart.

My point is that don’t take the drastic step of separating or divorcing unless the two of you have made multiple good faith efforts to find a remedy to your marriage problems.

But don’t be afraid to pursue separation if the differences between the two of you have gone unresolved for a long period of time.  Separation, while sometimes emotionally painful, can be part of the solution.

So if your marriage life feels utterly hopeless, then recognize that is a sign for you to begin a process such as I described above.  Then act on your own findings and the best advice you can obtain from trusted friends and relationship authorities.




Why Is My Husband So Annoying and Impossible To Live With

Today we are going to hear from Vanessa. She writes to me about her husband who she says is sadly annoying and nearly impossible to live with.

Do you know the type?

I am sure some of you out there may have occasion to wonder why your husband annoys you so much.  You might be thinking right now about some of those annoying husband habits that he just can’t seem to shake.

You may even have convinced yourself that your husband annoys you on purpose.  Does your guy have a devious streak in him?  Let’s hope not.

living with an annoying man

Indeed, it may have reached the point where you find it nearly impossible to be around him.

What should you do if the fabric of your marriage is being torn by annoyances that seem to mount day by day?

Let’s let Vanessa weight in on this topic.

Vanessa wrote to tell me, “Chris, my husband is obnoxious and manipulative.  I am convinced he is a control freak and I get easily annoyed by him all of the time.  He knows how to push all the wrong buttons.  He doesn’t even try to change.  I have given up on how to get my husband to be less annoying and overbearing.  I have come to accept that is the way he will always be.  Married and stuck with a lousy husband.” 

The Irritating Husband Syndrome

can't get out of bed blues


It can be tough when your husband’s manner causes you to want to lie in bed all day long.  Some days, Vanessa could hardly bring herself to face her situation.

Now Vanessa did tell me she has some of her own fussy little habits that seem to unnerve her husband as well.  Frankly, when she offered up some examples, I really didn’t understand why her husband would get bent out of shape over such things like double checking if the doors were locked or  often sanitizing the kitchen counters.

I told her I thought her husband was just picking at her.

Is Your Husband a Louse

But we are not here today to talk about annoying wife habits.

I am sure I could write quite a lengthy article on how to deal with a difficult wife.  Women are certainly not immune to this problem of creating a little chaos.

For the guys reading this post, just know your turn will come and in the future I will be weighing in on some of the problems you may be having with your wife.

But today, I have chosen to focus in part on Vanessa’s problem and how I helped her deal with her husband’s idiosyncracies.

I guess we could call it the Irritating Husband Syndrome.

Are you plagued by a husband who can’t seem to stop doing those little things that is aggravating or is unnerving?

Has your husband’s personality become annoying and irritating lately?

Or has your spouse always been this way such in Vanessa’s case, “My husband always irritated me and I can’t get him to stop.  I think he does it on purpose.”

If we were to make a list of the most annoying spouse habits, how many of them would you be able to check off.  Well, you are going to find out because that is what we are going to do in a minute.

As I alluded to earlier, when your husband is doing things that get on your nerves and drives you a little bonkers, it can challenge you in all sorts of ways.

You may find yourself asking why you ever married this man in the first place. You might think to yourself that you are going to scream or go berserk if he doesn’t stop whatever he is doing.

Truth be told, no women ever sets out to marry a guy who is difficult to live with.  Your heart was probably in the right place, but choosing a partner for life based on what your heart may have told you long ago can be a slippery slope.

following your heart is a slippery slope

This was Vanessa’s situation.

She had married young, rushing into a committment that she now regrets.  Vanessa’s husband was very religious and old-fashioned, so they had not really lived together prior to get hitched.

There were a lot of things they did know about each other.  She explained that it was awkward in the beginning as they fumbled through some of the basics.  Sex was very clumsy.  He was inexperienced. While Vanessa was younger, she had two other sexual partners.  He fumbled a lot and got very tense and uptight when she would suggest things.

Later, probably out of resentment, he would make little cutting remarks directed at her.  It could be over anything.  At first, his behavior unnerved her.  She didn’t appreciate his snide comments.  But over time, the annoyance factor changed to resentment as his antics grew to be old.

So her husband’s biting remarks were not the only things that bothered her.

Her husband also insisted they prey often during the day.  She knew he was head strong and passionate about his religious views.  At least that is how she perceived him in the beginning of the relationship.  Later she came to believe that he was just overbearing and intolerant of her own views.

Her husband’s personal habits also eked at her.

You know the sound when someone screeches chalk on a chalkboard, right?  That is sorta how she described it.  Her husband had an annoying habit of striking a really high-pitched voice when he was angry.

Not only was the sound of his voice annoying, but it so irked her she would often leave the room when it happened which in turn would cause him to get more upset and raise his voice to still a higher pitch.

She would try to explain to her husband that she didn’t  like getting yelled at.  The volume and high pitch of her husband’s voice not only hurt her ears, but it made her feel unsafe.

But her protestations were usually infective.

The Beginning of the End of the Relationship

marriage dissolving into dust

To avoid this kind of thing from happening a lot, she found herself just becoming agreeable and avoiding conflict.

She knows she was blowing fairy dust at him, but to turn the page to another day, she felt she had little recourse.

It was as if the relationship was coming apart at the seams in slow motion.

The end of the marriage clock was ticking and every time her husband would created yet another drama, it would tick by faster.

Worse, she felt helpless.  At least for a while.

When she tried to stand up for herself, he would start lecturing her and give her old outdated ultimatums, insisting that god placed the husband in charge of the marriage.

Stuck With the Worst Kind of Husband

This was not the only problem Vanessa reported.  Her husband also had an annoying habit of insisting that she write down her daily chores and check off each task as it was completed.

It was something he did as well for his own work activities.  He insisted with persistence that people are inherently inefficient and lazy and that the only way to avoid becoming  sinful was to track one’s daily activities.

Given that she was more laid back when growing up, this kind of structured living did not sit well with her.   She went along with it in the beginning, but after the first few weeks of marriage, she grew tired of such a regimented life style and wanted more freedom to pursue things without fear that she would be criticized or made to feel guilty.

All of these things began to take a toll on her and his constant little criticisms not only annoyed her, but caused her to become disillusioned.  She found herself wondering if other marriages operated this way.

I know some of this sounds pretty weird, but Vanessa had little experience with the workings of a marriage.  She grew up in a single mother household.   So there wasn’t a lot for her to use as a comparison except what she picked up from friends.

Brainwashing is a strong word for what she was enduring.

But it appeared that her husband was going out of his way to make her conform with his views and expectations for the marriage.  He had told her numerous times that marriages all over failed because of lack of commitment to duty and upholding the sacred vows.

Early on, Vanessa bought into that view and tried to go along with his puritanical views of how a marriage should operate.  Vanessa’s husband insisted that the husband was always the head of the household and if she didn’t see the world in his way, then she was violating her vows and god’s plan.

Unfortunately for her husband, we do not live in the 18 century and Vanessa soon began rebelling along a lot of fronts.  She was so turned off by his regimented ways of controlling so many aspects of the marriage and her personal time, she fought back in small ways in the beginning.

She quite doing his “stupid daily scrolls” as she called them.

She started to withhold sex from him with the thought in mind that he would leave her and find some other woman who would follow his marching orders.

One particularly eventful day, when her husband screech at her in his loud tone and demanded that she obey him,  she screwed up all her courage, then cursed him and left the house.

To say the least he was shocked.

She told me that while her husband was a very annoying man to live with,  what made it unbearable was her sense that she was being held prisoner.  Not literally, but emotionally.  She explained that she became overwhelmed with the constant desire to escape and regain her independence.

The balance of personal power had swung far out of whack in her marriage.

That is when she knew things would never work out.

Not only was her husband driving her loopy by what she now recognized as a somewhat bizarre preoccupation with operating their marriage in accordance with his religious teachings, but she found the tone of his utterances personally unattractive.

While his mannerisms and habits were not revolting per se, the annoyances and odd preoccupation with religious rituals and had caused her to feel uncomfortable and controlled.

So what finally happened?

Did Vanessa and her husband arrive at a new understanding?

Did she confront her husband with an ultimatum only to be met with fire and brimstone?

Well, before I tell you how her saga ended, let’s take a moment to explore the top 10 annoying things your husband might be doing to drive you mad!

The Top Ten Annoying Things Your Husband Does That Drives You Crazy

never paying attention to me

  1. Your husband smacks his food so loudly and in such a unattractive way, you almost have to jump out of your skin to keep your sanity.
  2. The man you married seems more attached to his phone.  It is bad enough that he frequently ignores you as he seems to always want to check his messages, but he insists on giving you a running dialogue about all things pertaining to him.
  3. Your man is a flirt.  Every chance he gets he tries to catch the eye of other women.  Whether he does it in your presence or not, it doesn’t matter to him.  It is as if he has a unconscious desire to be noticed by the opposite sex and this behavior drives you nuts.
  4. Your husband is a compulsive liar.  He is a kind of guy who is always bending the truth.  Even his petty lies are more than just a little annoying.  His insistence to deceive seems to know no end.  You are not sure if you should be irritated, frustrated, or just downright mad.
  5. Your husband is a slob.  He can’t seem to get it though his head that dirty clothes go in the hamper, not all over the floor.  Rarely does he make any effort to make the bed or sweep up the floor.  Housework seems beneath him even though he always says he will help out next time.  And if you think he is every going to learn to put the dishes away, guess again.
  6. Your guy is always late.  He seems not to understand the concept of being on time and it can make you more than a little crazy as you end up having to explain to everyone why you are late.  Of course, he blames you.
  7. The guy you are married to seems to think it perfectly fine to shout and scream at the television during a sports game.  His wild antics and loud and obnoxious voice rings throughout the house and if his favorite team loses, he his hell to live with.
  8. Your husband knows how to get on your nerves when he wants to start-up a fight.  He likes to try to get inside your head. Even though you know he plays this mind game, you fall for it anyway and it just ruffles your feathers.
  9. Your partner gets on your nerves when he insists that he must make a late night run to get some fast food despite the fact you slaved away in the kitchen to cook up a wholesome meal.
  10. It can be truly annoying when your husband wakes you up in the middle of the night wanting to have sex.  When you reject him he goes into his victim routine or creates a scene essentially disturbing your ability to get back to sleep.

Are You Overly Sensitive To Your Husband’s Odd Habits?

shutting out your guy

Do you ever feel like just putting on the headphones as a way to escape all things about your husband?  Does he annoy you so much that the only way to silence him is to literally silence him?

It is probably fair to say that husbands all over can do and say things that get on their wives’ nerves.  It is easy to become exasperated if the guy you are married to seems to have a knack for ruffling your feathers.

But at what point should we question ourselves as to whether we ourselves are being overly sensitive about our spouse’s behavior.

For example, a women named Taylor reached out to me and told me about her situation.  At first, it seemed to her that her husband could do no right.

But later, she realized that the problem wasn’t so much that her husband was difficult to live with.  It wasn’t really her preoccupation with a few of his undesirable habits that was so much the problem.

It turned out, her husband was really not that far off the norm.  Taylor’s problem in adjusting to some of her husband’s behaviors had more to do with her learning to adapt to her new environment.

She had been thrusted into a relationship which was something that was both glorious and frightening for her.  But when they moved in together, the relationship began to fray at the edges due to some of her insecurities.

Let me explain by way of letting Taylor relate her story.

“I was sure we were not going to make it.  We moved in together about a month ago.  Those first couple of weeks were some really tough days.  I was not accustom to living with another guy.  I had not done it before and everything about living with another man 24/7 was both wonderful and awful.  I know I shouldn’t feel that way.  But I have alway been a bit of a perfectionist and sometimes think too much about things that seem out-of-place.  Or if I can’t get my way about certain little, even inconsequential things, it bothers me.  He is the opposite.  Easygoing.  When he wouldn’t conform to how I thought he should act, I would get annoyed.  I would get mad at him because he wouldn’t get mad.  I know that sounds crazy!  I was uptight a lot.  He thought nothing of it and figured I would get use to it.   I didn’t realize I was this way so much until we had lived together for a few weeks.  It’s part me Chris.  Not all him.  I get insecure about stuff and I think my anxiousness plays into my fears.  Any advice on how to chill out.  That’s what he says all the time.

Is Your Husband Truly Annoying

stuck with an odd husband

But sometimes it is not that you have an insecure attachment approach to relationships.  Sometimes when these annoyances start stacking up, they can compound. And if your husband or boyfriend is not willing to listen to your concerns and make some changes, things can start sliding downhill.

Some men will go out of their way to get on your nerves as a perverse way to get back at you.  Sick, isn’t it.  But some guys have this kind of makeup.  Personally, I think it is a mind game some men play to try to control you.

Sometimes it is just a bad boy complex. There are men out there who are mean-spirited about doing or saying things to intentionally aggravate or badger their wife.

When the marriage is reduced to a test of wills, with the husband constantly taunting and testing his wife to exact some kind of revenge or measure of control, then it suffices to say such relationships have a short fuse.

Don’t get me wrong.  There will always be some give and take and all of us would benefit if we were more tolerant of each other’s vices.

But if you are at a stage in the marriage where you are supremely annoyed with your husband’s behavior and are disillusioned with his ways, then you should be reminded that your relationship is not a life sentence.

I have coached many women who have been married for years who go on to tell me how miserable they have been with their husband’s ways.  You do have options.  We all do.

If you have made good faith efforts to work through some serious compatibility issues, yet the man you are with is still driving you crazy, then don’t feel like you can’t call for a short-term separation to get some space.

Absence is an interesting thing.  It moves us in different ways.

It can make us appreciate our partner’s more and motivate couples to change.

But it can also cause you to “see the light” and realize that not all relationships are going to work out as you once hoped.

This is what Vanessa learned.

She surveyed the past and looked at the future and decided she needed to set off on a new course.  It wasn’t something she entered into lightly.  I know that because I worked with her for a good spell.

Just getting out from under her husband’s control for a trial separation had a powerful emotional effect on her as she realized how much of “herself” she had left behind and she wanted that girl back.

Don’t ever forget.  Life offers us many paths.  Don’t stay on the one that makes you unhappy and unfulfilled.

How Do I Make Him Stop Being Distant and Mad At Me

Does your husband act cold and distant?

Is he short of temper or irritable?

Does he act like he is pulling away, paying less attention to you?

What is causing your husband to be this way?

How do you stop him from being distant and acting like he is mad at you?

We are going to talk about all of these questions and more as we try to get to the bottom of what might be going on with your husband.

feeling apart from your husband

First of all, is it true men often become distant later after they fall in love?

You would think that love would bring out the best in your guy. What is it that causes a man to sometimes withdraw his affections?

Or is it just a big myth?

In other words, perhaps men come in all types and sometimes you may just latch on to one that retreats into himself more often than not.

My Man Is Pulling Back

Perhaps your husband possesses an insecure attachment style.  Some men are not mature enough yet or equipped psychologically to be close to a woman for the long haul.

Could it be that your husband has some emotional hangups.

Yes, that could be the problem which is driving his behavior.

Or then again, it may not be that at all.

You see, your husband, just like most other guys, is a pretty complex creature.  So knowing for sure what might be going on in his head is not always such an easy thing to figure out.

I have spoken with quite a few women who told me their husbands or boyfriends seemed perfectly happy in the beginning of the relationship, but then something happens along the way.

Where does it go wrong?

How does it happen?

Did you have anything to do with it?

All fair questions and guess what….we are going to delve into some of the mysteries.

The Effects of Your Husband Shutting You Out of His Life?

when you feel shut out of boyfriend's life

When a guy starts acting differently your first reaction is usually to try to get him to open up.

Of course this can sometimes backfire as your husband or boyfriend starts to pull into himself even more.  On one hand you are thinking, “OK, he is acting distant, how do I bring him back”.   

You are  thinking what should you do when your man starts shutting you out.  One one hand, you know he loves you.  But when your husband puts emotional distance between you and he it can be confusing.

Your husband or boyfriend’s reclusive behavior can come on quickly and that can also make it frustrating.

You know he is putting space between the two of you.  And it can come out of nowhere.  But he may not want to talk about it.  Or he may say nothing is wrong and make it out like it is all in your mind.  Which in turns can drive you mad because you know in your heart he is acting different.

Why Is He Acting So Strange

So a distant spouse who is in denial can ratchet up you own anger.  Which in turn can make the whole situation worse as you can lose it and demand to know what is wrong.

His behavior can also be confusing and can cause you to turn inward.  You might start to wonder if you have done something wrong.   If he won’t talk about it, you end up feeling worse as your mind labors over what brought all of this on.

Before long, you can start to spiral.  You might start to pull away from your husband as you mirror his behavior.

What a mess it is when a guy just decides he is going to shut down his feelings.

So why do men sometimes withdraw from you when all that you are doing is being yourself?

What is in a man’s DNA to just curl up into themselves and push you away when you are only trying to be a good wife.

And when they start acting this way, what does it usually look like?

What signs should you look for?

Signs That Your Husband or Boyfriend Is Withdrawing From You

he pushes me away

When your husband or boyfriend decides he wants to shut you out it can be for any number of reasons and the way he does it can take on many different forms.

Let’s talk about the signs he gives off that reveals something is not quite right.

One of the first signs is when your husband acts like something is on his mind, that something is bothering him, but denies it.

It is clear by the way he is behaving that he is wrestling with some problem.  He is preoccupied with some issue.  But he may still insist nothing is wrong and may even get more upset when you start probing.

So denial and defensiveness are two signs that usually point to something that is off kilter.

Now, one should not jump to quickly to conclusions just because your husband is cranky and doesn’t want to be bothered.

He could be just having a bad day.  He may not be feeling well.  He could be simply annoyed at someone or something and is trying to hold it in.

All sorts of things can happen to cause anyone of us to feel the need to withdraw into ourselves for a little while.

The concern is when your husband or boyfriend seems distracted or reserved for long periods of time.  If a few days go by and he doesn’t seem to snap out of it, then it is likely there is something that needs to get out in the open.

So in that respect, the amount of time that elapses in which your husband pushes you away is usually a tell-tale sign.

You might notice that he starts spending more time alone.  When you approach him to encourage him to go do something with you, he may mumble something to the contrary or worse, snap at you and tell you to leave him alone.

Or on the flip side of the coin, your husband may start planning and scheduling events or activities without your involvement and participation.  He may start spending more time with his friends or colleagues to put distance between he and you.

The bottom line is that you feel cut off from him and he doesn’t seem to care or pretends that nothing is wrong and denies any assertions by you that he is absent from your life.

Your husband’s pullback on affection is another sign that something is off.

He may have often given you little spontaneous hugs. Now it seems like your husband hardly ever wants to initiate any simple gestures of affection.

Or there may have been a time when your husband would look into your eyes and whisper something sweet or give you a quick peck on the cheek as he leaves the house.  But perhaps those types of loving gestures have gone by the wayside.

Your husband may give off this cold demeanor.  He may seem unapproachable.  It may feel like he is steering clear of you as if he doesn’t want to be near you.  It may be very subtle, but you might pick up the vibe that your husband is avoiding you.

Often, problems with a distant spouse shows up in the bedroom.  Maybe in the past the two of you would crawl into bed together and talk for a spell and lovingly hold each other.   But a distant husband will usually have none of that.  He will more often come to bed later, long after you are asleep.

Your relationship may feel like it has turned into a frosty marriage.  He may initiate sex less often or when you suggest making love, he may find ways and reasons to avoid having sex with you, offering a litany of excuses.

If your husband  is giving off signs that he is distant and is acting cold, it may also be revealed in other types of avoidance behaviors.

He might not want to talk to you as much and when you bring up important issues to discuss, he puts them off.

Your husband may also spend more time at work to create physical distance between you and he.

Or he may declare that he needs to go on a trip (without you) to take care of some matter (personal or business).

This sort of escapism may happen more regularly as time goes by.

Did You Do Something Wrong To Make Him Pull Away From You

are you feeling boxed out by your husband

Before we get too much deeper into this discussion, let’s put some things into perspective.

Usually when a husband starts to pull away, it suggest something is wrong.  But it doesn’t necessarily mean you have done something wrong.

Just because he is acting like he doesn’t want to be bothered by you and it feels like he is constantly finding ways to push you away, one should not jump to the worst of conclusions.

Don’t assume he no longer finds you attractive and is having an affair.  That may not be the case at all.

You shouldn’t assume that he is angry with you or that you have done something wrong.

It could be that what is bothering your husband is something that he is internalizing and has little or nothing to do with you.

There could be a work problem that he is struggling with and he has withdrawn into himself trying to solve the problem, turning it over and over in his mind.

It could be a personal related problem, something that your husband is worried about.  Perhaps he is obsessing over it to the extent that he is distracted.

So while it may feel like your husband is acting distant and shutting you out, the reality could be that he is not harboring any negative thoughts toward you; rather he is just wrestling with some problem he has yet to resolve.

Your Husband May Be Retreating To His Safe Place

retreating to a safe place

Your husband is vulnerable to anxieties and worries, even depression, just like everyone else.  And if any of those things occupy a large enough space in his mind, it can give off the appearance that his is pushing you away and out of his life.  When in reality, he is struggling with his emotional issues.

Men have a way of retreating and retiring into themselves when they are plagued with acute worries and concerns.  Instead of reaching out to you, his wife, for love and support, your husband may temporarily find more comfort in his man cave.

Many men don’t want to admit to a weakness.  They don’t want to be seen through your eyes as vulnerable.  So they sometimes avoid asking for help.

Your husband’s man cave is a familiar place for him to retreat in order to work things out.  Maybe his mood has shifted and he just wants to be alone and needs time to think about things or decompress.  Maybe he is working on a project and needs time and space.

When your husband goes into his man cave, wherever that might be for him, you can misread it as him shutting you out of his life.  In a way, that is what he is doing, but men sometimes respond better in the long run when they answer the primal call of the wild.

If they are going to wage battle against some problem, some guys would rather go it alone.  So any effort by you to interfere with their instinct to conquer this problem by themselves is usually met with resistance.

It is possible that everything inside him is screaming to be left alone and not to be bothered.  So in order to escape, he will seek out a place he can go, either physically or emotionally, or both, and hunker down for a awhile.

Again, the catalyst that triggers these behaviors may have nothing to do with you.  But the outcome of his behavior can make you think you have done something wrong.  Hence, you begin to conclude that he is acting distant and cold because of something you have done to upset him.

But that could be far from the truth.

It could be simply that the beast in your husband has arisen and he needs time to tame it and come back to being himself.

So give your husband some time before you arrive at any lasting conclusions.

Sometimes it is best to just let your husband go through this period and work it out and unwind.

If it turns out to be something so serious that requires your attention or assistance from others, that will become more clear later.

What If My Husband Always Seems Mad At Me?

angry and wants to be left alone

I often get clients reaching out to me asking, “what should I do if my husband is mad at me?”.  Or they will exclaim, “my boyfriend is mad at me, how do I fix it?”.

When it seems your husband has slowly become more distant in his responses to you or behaves in a cold or even angry manner, the natural reaction is to understand why.

Why is he acting this way and treating you different?

You want to know what you can do about it because nothing is more upsetting than not knowing why your husband is acting like he would rather not be around you.

When you pick up those kinds of cues from your husband, it is hard not to feel rejected and hurt inside.

So what is driving your husband to withdraw into himself?

Let’s hear from some of my clients that went through some struggles with their own husband or boyfriend and how it shaped their lives in that moment.

Hey Chris.  What should I do when my boyfriend is mad at me and won’t talk to me.  I am not even sure what I have done.  I asked him about it and he says its nothing, but I can’t get past the unmistakable feeling that he purposely putting up a wall between us.  He won’t let me get close to what is going on with him.  When a guy seems mad and testy and ignores you should you confront him?

I think my husband is mad at me.  I am at work now. What should I text him to change his attitude?  I don’t want to go him with him like this.  He denied anything was wrong but I know him and he has been giving me the cold shoulder.  What should I text him to break through his attitude?  Is there something I should say when I see him mad like this?  I just want my husband to stop being angry.  How can I make happy.

We have been together six years and he is not usually this way.  Something is definitely off.  He is drifting. He acts like he wants to get away.  He usually is very attentive and caring, but lately he has been strident.  Why is my boyfriend so mean, saying ugly things.  I can’t get past the fact that he says we are getting too old as a couple.  What does that mean?  When my boyfriend says mean things to me for no reason, I can’t help but think he wants it over.  It like happened overnight.   I think he is acting out so maybe he is going through a phase.  He is shutting me out of everything.  I am really desperate for some advice. Can you help?

It can make one feel helpless if your husband or boyfriend starts showing signs of wanting to back out of the marriage or relationship.

Over time, you get accustomed to a certain amount of closeness.  You come to value those moments where you feel close and connected to your husband.  Then either suddenly or over a brief period of time, that closeness and connectedness subsides.

Something stands in the way.  Whatever it is, you want it to stop. But to stop it, to get things back to what they were like before, you need to know the trigger.

Is your husband or boyfriend behaving this way because of something you have done?

Is you man harboring some deep, dark secret?

Is his pulling away from you because of a personal issue that he wishes to tell you, but can’t?

Is he essentially just going through a bad mood period and simply needs some time to snap out of it?

Whatever it is, there is a way to get to the bottom of it, sooner or later.

What Do I Do If My Husband Acts Distant and Mad At Me

come up wiht a plan

To get to a place in which your husband will open up about what is triggering his distant behavior, it may be wise to follow a three prong strategy.

1. Begin First With Giving Your Husband Some Room:  Give your man some space.  You may notice something is off and that he seems to be withholding his affection.  There may be a certain chill in the air.  Maybe it is your imagination.  Maybe it a mood state he has fallen into and really does not amount to anything important. Or maybe it is something you need to know about.  Perhaps you can help him.

Whatever it is though, it may be wise to first pull back.  Probing too fast and too much can cause him to act more distant and pull away even more.  Give him a chance to work through whatever it is that is causing him to act distant.  He may resolve it on his own.  He may actually come to you to talk about it.  But the less pressure you put on him, the better.  At least, initially, this is probably your best strategy in the beginning.

2. Offer Soft Support, Then Pull Back:  So let’s say that you tried step one.  Let’s assume that a couple of days have gone by and your husband has not shown a willingness to open up and tell you why he is acting different.  Deep inside, you sense something is wrong.  He is not normally not testy like this.  Nor does he normally shut you out of his life.  Since the problem has not resolved itself, it is time to take things to the next level.  I would recommend a small intervention might be useful.  Sometimes “less is more”.

So in this situation, you could simply state the obvious in a non threatening or defensive manner.  You could say something like, “Honey, clearly something is on your mind.  You seem short with me and distant.  Is there something I can do to help?”   Then after breaking your silence on this subject of his mood, you should pull back again.  Wait for his response.  Maybe he opens up and tells you what is going on in his ticker.  Or maybe he doesn’t.  He might just act like nothing is really wrong.  He might get annoyed and upset.  Whatever his reaction, don’t get drawn into a debate of what is going on.  You have spoken the truth as you observe it.  By underscoring or defending your words, you open up avenues for your husband to be combative or play the denial game.

Of course, it is possible that he might just tell you what is bothering him, which would be an important step going forward. He might just take you up on your offer of support. After all, that is what husband wives are supposed to do for each other.  But if he doesn’t give you an explanation on why he is acting distant or uptight, that’s fine too.  This is not a race to the truth.  If you push too hard, it may have the opposite effect.  Just remember to remain calm and proceed with the understanding that you have handled the situation in a supportive and in an adult way.

You may think that you have accomplished nothing if your husband does not make an effort to explain his behavior, but that would not be true.  Your words will echo in his conscience and subconscious mind, causing him to re-evaluate how and when he needs to talk to you about the matter.  This pause in taking any further action also allows you to re-evaluate your husband’s mood and behavior.

3. Be More Direct In Your Inquiry and State You Are Very Concerned:  If Steps 1 and 2 fail, you may need to make a more direct intervention.  If your husband has been acting fussy and distant for quite some time, then whatever is going on needs to come out in the open because the relationship will suffer if this kind of behavior goes unchecked.  Using as few words as possible, it is time to make a proclamation of sorts.  It shouldn’t come off as an accusation or emotional.  Your tone should suggest empathy and concern.

What you will be doing now is telling your husband your are very concerned with his recent behavior.  You can express that is time to talk about what is going on as he has been acting  differently.  Then stop talking.  Allow silence to be the crowbar that opens him up to telling you what might be going on.  Sometimes this approach works.

But sometimes, your husband will keep acting like nothing is wrong, that everything is hunky dory.  Or he might get angry and snarl at you.  If your husband is truly hiding something and is refusing to talk about it, a common reaction is to snap off something ugly.  He may try to turn the whole issue around on you, making it out like you are the problem.  That you are imagining the whole thing.   If this is the outcome, your best response is to say nothing.  Don’t take his bait and get into a fight.  Let him unwind.   That might be the best thing for him. Sometimes this approach has the effect of diffusing his anger and reluctance to talk.  Later he might just let it all out.

Of course, whatever you do….whatever approaches you employ to try to get underneath why your husband is acting more distant ….there is no guarantee these strategies will work to open him up.

You can try to talk about it.  You can seek couples counseling.  You can just do nothing and hope for the best.  None of these approaches will necessarily get the result you want.  But try you must.

I suppose, as a very last resort, if you have tried everything and are quite sure you are not imagining any of this and his behavior and mood seems to have worsened, you can impose a brief separation period.

Stepping away for a few days or longer can sometimes jolt a husband back to the reality that there is a serious problem within the marriage and it needs to be discussed in a constructive and supportive manner.

In the final analysis,  in almost all these cases, time is on your side.  Eventually, the truth will come out.

When Should I Start Dating Again After a Breakup or Divorce

It is really tough to have to deal with all the aftermath following a bitter separation or breakup with a husband or wife (boyfriend or girlfriend).

As things unfold and the marriage unravels, it can be equally challenging to recover from the rough and tumble actions that occurred during the divorce process with your ex husband or ex-wife.

dating again after breakup

And when it is finally all over (or so you think) these  painful memories have a way of sticking around, mixing in with the good recollections and coloring your perspective of what is was like with your husband or wife.

This can create a state of listlessness, depression, and uncertainty as to how to move forward in your life.

But you know in your heart you want your life to go forward.  So this raises the practical question of when you should start dating again after you have broken up with your ex.

Should your start dating again after the separation?

Should you wait until the divorce is final?

That is what Bessie wanted to know when she asked me, “Chris, we are officially separated and I think I want to date again, should I?

I Want To Move Forward

It seems such an innocent question.

Certainly the answer should be clear and straightforward.

But this whole matter of how to proceed with resuming your life and what that really means regarding your dating habits is vastly more complicated than most people realize.

Dating During the After Breakup (or Separation) Period

planning an outing out

It helps to have perspective.

In the midst of these internal deliberations about dating, you are still likely facing other post breakup or post divorce challenges.  It’s difficult to manage all of your complex emotions and the unique pressures when love has gone south and you and your ex are split apart.

Being coupled with another human being makes most of us feel whole.  Take that away and it will feel like something is now missing in your life.

How do you become whole again after a part of your heart and soul has been ripped away.

For sake of sparing all of the extra personal pronouns, let’s assume we are talking about a women’s journey after her breakup with a husband or boyfriend.

Don’t be surprised if  you feel lost or if your mind becomes trapped in uncertainty.

Don’t be surprised if you feel yourself wandering back (in your mind) to the old relationship, running through all the things that happened.

There will likely be many things you will try to grapple with.  Part of the reason for this kind of thinking is that what you went through was traumatic.

To a large extent,  recalling your struggles with your ex husband can be difficult to avoid.  You might also struggle with who you really are and what you should do with yourself.

So it is never easy to leave behind the pain of a failed marriage or relationship.  With things ending on sour note, as is the case for most, there comes all kinds of challenges as you try to cope with unpredictable moods and expectations of the future.

Facing An Uncertain Future

So something has to change if you find yourself immersed in all of these kinds of negative thoughts.  To be made whole again, something needs to change with the way you view yourself and the world around you.

It wouldn’t be surprising if you have a healthy dose of distrust for men in general, particularly if you have gone through a very difficult separation or breakup.

So what kind of change are we talking about?

Part of that change can revolve around when you will allow another man back in your life.

Like most women and men, you are probably wondering when you will be ready to date again.

You may be thinking if you will ever be ready to trust again.  The hardships you have suffered with your husband might still echo in your every memory.

A lot of women have asked me about this dilemma as to when to entertain another relationship.

They want to know more about how and when should they actively pursue a dating strategy.

So this post will be tailored to the ladies as I have already mentioned.

But don’t forget guys, if you are trying to bounce back after a breakup or divorce and are trying to figure out your next moves, you will find plenty of advice here for you too.

Turning The Corner on Love

falling in love again

The feelings you are probably still massaging about future love and overcoming past difficulties are no doubt complex.

Knowing when it is time to get back in the game….to put yourself out there realizing there will be risk…is an important consideration.  And the answer is not the same for all.

I am not going to beat around the bush.  If you have gone through an agonizingly difficult separation with your ex husband or ex boyfriend, the very thought of dating a man will likely be far from your present thoughts.

The reason is obvious.  You have come through a traumatic breakup and in your mind or perhaps lying inside your subconscious, men may very well represent the enemy.

It does sound awful because it is awful what you have gone through.  Splitting up with your husband or boyfriend of years is painful and tests you in so many ways.

Nevertheless, it is important not to let one man who hurt you and failed you, making you feel miserable.

Don’t become a victim of constant negative thoughts.   Your emotional mind, which has in part been injured from the breakup, will try to drag you through a period you just as soon as would like to forget.

Part of that is the chemicals speaking.  But part of it is under your control.

So it is best not to let your ex husband or boyfriend poison your view of all men.

There comes a time when you need to turn the corner and get back out there.

And that is the question, isn’t it?

When and how should you start dating again after a long relationship.  Because after all, you probably wouldn’t be trying to get answers about this topic unless you had been involved in a long term relationship that went wrong.

Dating A Man Again Can Be Scary

its scarey to date again

It can be frightening when all that we know in terms of dating is long in the past.

Giving another man a key to our heart can be scarey.

The very thought of how one should proceed can create anxiousness and uncertainty.

Should one go slow after a breakup?

After all, you have been through the ringer in dealing with all kinds of crap, right?  One part of you is thinking it would be folly to rush right back out there in any kind of serious way.

You sure don’t want to make the same mistakes you did before in not finding a guy who is more compatible with your needs, desires, and values.

But somewhere in the back of our mind there might exist this  little persistent thought that you will be alone the rest of your life.

It might start picking at you in such ways that part of you begins to believe it could come true.  You don’t want to face the rest of your life all by yourself, you say to yourself.

So what do some women do when facing such thoughts?

You pump yourself up.

You tell yourself that your ex husband was just a bad egg and certainly you can do better.

You look around and see all of the ways you can now connect with men.  Social media has made it much more possible for men and women to meet and get to know each other.

Sure, you say to yourself, there are some bad guys out there.  Some predators that are just looking for sex.  But you know in your heart that there must be some good men out there looking for the right woman for themselves.

And you wouldn’t be wrong if you thought that way.  Because just as there are some undesirable or poorly suited men out there chasing after a temporary catch; there are men who have the right goods to be a good match for what you need.

So should one get back on the saddle as quickly as possible and start dating immediately after a breakup?

Just how soon is too soon to start dating after you and your husband break it off?

Let’s hear from a few women that weighed in on this topic.  They too had similar questions.  As you will see, how they should proceed largely depends on their particular experience and needs.

Hey Chris!  Do have a guide-book on something like dating rules after a breakup.  You know, something that covers things like how long should you be single after a breakup. I just ended a bad relationship with a  messed up guy.  We talked about getting married and got close.  But he was too controlling and unreliable and that led to a lot of fights.  Its been about three weeks since we broke up.  I think I want to test the waters.  How long after a long-term relationship should you wait to date?

Is there a rule of thumb about how long to wait after a breakup to start getting to know some other men?  By the way, I really don’t know what the rules are for dating after going through a bad relationship.  Should I even think of how to date after divorce at 30.  One of my girlfriends told me dating after divorce at 40 is the sweet spot, but I am not really sure I can wait that long.

Hey, I just need a little dating advice after my divorce.  What you need to do Chris is write an article on dating rules after divorce for today’s woman.  So much has changed about how one can meet up with a man.  The last thing I want to do is start dating too soon after the divorce.  I am afraid I would blow up the whole thing because I am not sure I am ready for the whole dating scene.  I go back and forth on what I think I want.

As you can see, a lot of women are plagued with doubt on how to proceed. Depending on their situation, they may have been burned badly by their husband or boyfriend and they don’t want that feeling again.

So if you are a woman who is trying to bounce back from a failed marriage or are coming off a really bad breakup with your boyfriend and are seeking some advice on how you should proceed, let’s start first with how long you should wait before you put yourself out there again.

How Soon is too Soon To Start Dating After You Breakup With Your Husband

is it too soon to give away your heart

Some people think the sooner you start dating again, the better.

They argue that it’s like getting back on the horse that bucked you off.  If you hesitate or delay, they explain, it will only lead to avoidance and that leaves you lonely.

People who argue this point believe that women need to be with a man to be complete and they reason that the sooner you start dating other men, the faster you will realize realize that the guy you were married to was not the right man for you.

So with this kind of thinking, you would be encouraged to set up dates rather quickly after your breakup.  The more the better would be their preference because after all, how will you really get to know yourself and what the field of men are like out there.   This is how some people see it.

I don’t belive that.  In fact, I think that is terrible advice for most people. I take the opposite view.

Now, I am not arguing that you should go to the nearest convent and sign up.  I just think it is practical for most women who have suffered through a difficult relationship not to move too fast.

So if what I say is true, then how can you tell when you are moving too fast to get back into the dating game?

The Top 5 Signs You Are Dating To Soon

you still need time to heal up

  1. It’s only been three weeks since you separated with your husband and one of your girlfriends keeps egging you on to go out with her on a double date.  She says it will be great for you.  But you can help but think you are rolling the dice. Thoughts of being with a man makes you anxious.
  2. You hear that your husband, who you are separated from, is going out with one of your girlfriends.  You are furious.  To show him two can play at this game, you contact a mutual male friend to set up a date.  Now you are going to get even, you think.  But when all the game playing is done, you just feel more empty.
  3. You and your husband’s divorce finally came through.  You are feeling vulnerable and sad about it all.  You figure, the best way to change your mood is go out and have a few drinks with a male friend.  One thing leads to another and now you are in bed having sex with a guy you really don’t want to be with.
  4. All you can think about is teaching your ex a lesson.  You are filled with desire to set up a lot of dates and make sure he hears about every one of them.  Your revenge plan is to post a lot of suggestive things on Facebook, hoping your ex notices and regrets he ever let you go.  (Big mistake)
  5. You have no clue how to meet up with a man.  So you buy a book on how to pick up men.  It tells you one tactic is to put on some sexy clothes and visit a nearby bar and show some skin and shake you booty.  Later you go home, empty handed, drunk, and feeling miserable.  (Consider yourself lucky you didn’t pick up anyone.)

Go Slow With Dating After a Breakup or Divorce

learn to love your own company

So let’s talk about how you should start dating again after a long relationship such as you may have had with you ex husband or a long-term boyfriend.

There are many pitfalls in moving too fast.  Emotionally, you may not even be close to dealing with the whole dating scene.

So how long should you wait before you dip your toe into the waters?  A few weeks….a month…..a year?

The truth is that there is not a prescribed set amount of time that is right for everyone.  It will vary on many factors including how long your previous relationship lasted, the factors leading up to the breakup, your interpersonal style, and your specific personal needs.

You can’t imagine how often women will ask me when they should start-up dating again.  They will press me for a more specific timeline as if I have the ultimate answer.  There is really no such thing as the ultimate answer.  I tell them that, but women and men usually want some guidance.

So here is my guidance.

At a minimum, waiting at least a few weeks is what I would characterize as an inoculation period.

It allows you some time to get in touch with your feelings.  But there may be cases in which a woman who is coming off a bitter breakup, separation or divorce is still struggling with the whole ordeal.

Maybe she is still dealing with emotional damage inflicted upon her.  Perhaps she has not healed enough to really be ready to trust again.

She may be struggling with whether she will find love again.  Or perhaps the previous relationship was lengthy and there still remains emotional ties that has not yet been full resolved.

So it would not be out of the question for such an individual to need 3-6 months to get her life back in order.

A lot can go wrong if you rush right back into serious dating.  I suppose there are occassions in which you may  want to casually date someone, such as going out with a mutual friend just for his company and to enjoy something together.  There is nothing wrong with that.

The kind of dating I am talking about is where you are exploring if there might exist a real connection.  In other words, you are seeking a romantic attachment.

OK, so I guess I have opened up a can of worms.

So let’s make sure we are talking about the same thing.

When I say “dating”, I am not referring to going out with a group of men and women and you happen to  chat it up with a guy.

Dating can mean a lot of things to people, but at its core it involves a clear desire to meet up with a guy with the purpose of exploring whether you and he may be compatible, longterm partners.

This can be a one on one type of experience or it could start off in a small group such as a double date.  But there is a clear intent by both parties to explore each other….to see if there is a potential fit to warrant further exploration.

A serious dater is one who is emotionally prepared to form a new attachment.

But once again, don’t be in a real hury until you feel you are ready.  If it’s just a casual get together, that is fine, so long as both you and the guy are on the same wavelength.

On this point, remember this….

If you are getting over a very longterm relationship, you will go through a sort of mourning stage.  So it’s OK not to pursue the dating scene.  Get connected to your feelings and listen to them.

Rushing right out to meet some new guy is something you likely will have little desire for.

So if others around you are encouraging or pressuring you to go out and meet some new men, it would be best to ignore their pleas and make sure you have taken sufficient time to heal.

Learn How To Date Yourself

find the light in your soul

One way to take things slowly with regard to dating is to first learn to date yourself.

Find the light that is shining in your soul.

As I have mentioned, everyone who has gone through some kind of breakup has experienced undeniable pain.  So allowing yourself time to heal and do the things to regain your self-esteem, confidence, or whatever it is that you may be struggling with is important.

A while back, I interviewed a very special lady who was an expert in the recovery stage following a breakup.  One of the things she said which can help speed along the recovery process is to learn first to date yourself.

She believed that sometimes we need to learn to not just forgive ourselves for whatever role we may had played in a failed marriage, but we need to go further and lift ourselves up.

Her believe is what better way of accomplishing that than doing things for yourself.  Taking yourself out on dates and becoming one with yourself.

That was the great lesson in her wise advice.  Seek to heal and complete yourself first.  Find those things in yourself you like and honor them.  Be your own best friend.  And treat yourself to the special things you would want a man to do for you.

It is like a self fulfilling prophecy.

And through it all, you end up drawing closer to the best version of yourself.  As you become more attractive to yourself, others will be more drawn to you.

In effect, you become like a magnet because you are happy and comfortable with who you are and all of that shines through.  It’s like having a love affair with yourself, without all of the selfishness or narcissism.

What often happens is you will meet a guy you become interested in when you are not even looking to date.  You can go look for the latest article such as, 10 Steps to Get Back Into Dating After a Breakup or Divorce, and I am sure you will pick up a few ideas.

Certainly, there are things you can do to increase you chances of meeting and interacting with men.

But it is uncanny how you often end up coming across a man who is well suited for your needs and preferences when you are not even actively pursuing.

What If I Can Never Trust My Husband or Love Again

Things can happen in a marriage and as unbelievable as it may sound, all of the goodwill and trust that was built up, can quickly erode as a result of one bad act, leaving you grasping for where to turn…what to do.

Let’s take the case of a wife whose name is Casey.  Imagine you find yourself in her shoes where you suddenly can no longer trust your husband or boyfriend, leaving you wondering if you even still love him.

Imagine something happening to you that has such an impact that not only are you questioning if  can ever love your husband again in the same way, much less trust him, but you are entertaining asking him to leave.

unhappy lessons in marriage

So let’s take a dive into her story and I want you to pretend you are the leading character in this relationship drama. Along the way we are going to talk about some of the emotional challenges you might be facing and what actions you may or may not wish to take.

What if you woke up one day to learn something so shocking that you were immediately faced with having to come to grips with some ugly truths and make some really hard decisions.

Such was the case with my client, Casey.

She and her husband of 6 years had been doing OK.  While things were far from perfect, she never imagined she would find herself in a situation in which not only was her life ripped apart, but everything that she use to think about and hope for regarding the future was instantly changed in her mind.

You might ask yourself what kind of thing could happen that would cause such a dramatic change in a marriage.  For Casey, it was something worse than she could ever imagine.  And it all started on a fateful day a few months ago when her husband came home to tell her that he had been lying to her for a few years about something bigger than both of them.

It was scary for her to hear those words.  She wasn’t even sure what he was talking about at first.  Before her stood her husband who she had loved and trusted for all those years and he was about to rock her world in the worst of ways.

What he told her was shocking and took her some time to actually process.  Indeed, the news so jolted her, she remembered thinking to herself if she could ever love another man again.

Those feelings and concerns were reinforced later after the dreadful truth he told finally settled in place.  Then of course there was this long aftermath period which she presently found herself dealing with.  It is not easy when you learn that your husband is leading a completely separate and secret life.  She had to work through all the emotions of disbelief, confusion, denial, anger, and resentment, before acceptance finally kicked in.

I Can’t Believe This Is Happening

So what in the world did her husband do that caused Casey to tell me, “I don’t trust my husband anymore and am not sure if I can ever love again”.   In her mind, “should I leave him” was never a question.

The question of should you be with someone you don’t trust was not something that plagued her.  By the time I was talking with her, she knew what she wanted going forward.  She wanted him out of her life.  It was over.  It was as if she was living with a stranger, someone she thought she knew, but really a person that was an imposter.

my husband is a mystery man

She had created this image of her husband of someone who had a sense of honor and decency.  She use to think of him as a man who would be there for her and do all the right things.  But not anymore.

Casey did not have questions about how to learn to trust your husband again or how to fall back in love with your husband like it was the first time.   She was past all of that.

She wanted to know how to go forward and pick up the pieces.  She wanted reassurance that she could meet another man and learn to love him and be loved.

She wondered about such things because on the day I spoke with her, she was still broken in some ways.  That which she use to count on was ripped away.

This was not one of those awful marital spats in which the husband told a few big bad lies.

It was not one of those situations in which you are paranoid and have no reason to distrust the man use to be the cornerstone of your life.

It was not one of those “I don’t trust my husband with money” situations in which your partner has some awful gambling problem such that he bet and lost the family’s savings.

Casey’s situation was something even I had not come across before.  So I did not have to give her assurances that falling back in love with her partner was still in the cards.  No, it was beyond that.

I Don’t Want Him Back

It was not one of those events that happened such that she was searching for  “how to love my husband again after he cheated on me“.  Yes, cheating is an incredibly difficult problem for couples to get through.  But what her husband did was worse

Nor was it the reverse.  Sometimes I get women coming to me in search of answers to questions like…

How do I fall back in love with my husband after I cheated”

“How to get your husband to fall back in love with you and trust you again after you slept with their best friend”.

No, No.  Casey had none of that going on.  She wasn’t crying over how she might find love again in her marriage.  All the love she once had for him had been sucked right out of the marriage, almost at once.

She wasn’t there to tell me her story of how she set aside her pain and suffering and “how I fell back in love with my husband after heartbreak”.

No, no.  Casey was beyond heartbreak.  In her mind, she guy who she once thought was her partner in life had done the undoable

When Your Husband Rips Your World Apart

life changing marriage event

On the fateful day many weeks ago, her husband, who had been mulling over whether he should tell his wife his “Big Bad Lie”, came home early from work that day.  Then he instructed his wife to sit down and told her in a matter of fact tone of voice that he had been illegally married to another woman for the past  three years and they had two children of their own they were raising.

Devoid of all emotion, he told her that he wasn’t sure if he really loved this other person but she gave him children which he thought he wanted.  But now he wasn’t so sure if he still wanted to be with this other woman.  But nor was he sure he was happy with Casey.  Then he spend the next several minutes analzing the whole situation like he was defending his dissertation.   Casey, his first wife as she learned, was horrifed to learn of the depth of his deception and was furious with the flat, not emotional way her husband told her of  what he described as his own “ordeal” that he was going through.

As you can imagine, as Casey explained, she was still reeling from the first part of what he told her.  Trying to understand what her husband meant about not being sure if he wanted the other family in his life anymore was far to confusing and absurd for her to even be able to process.

What kind of man cheats on his wife, leading a double life, a double marriage, having children with his other wife, then tells his first wife some of the most horrible things a man could say to a woman.

Casey explained to me she was in utter shock about how her husband could be so detached about what the horrible pain he had caused her.

Was it some crazy way of hoping his present wife would understand and forgive and take him back?

Was it his way of trying to end his first marriage or was he hoping his wife would help him break off the second marriage?

As Casey explained it to me, it didn’t take her long to stop even trying to make sense of it.  “Maybe it was my emotional self preservation kicking in but I was beyond caring what his motives might have been“, she explained.  He had already sealed his fate in her mind.  She knew that to be a truth as his story poured out of him.

But her husband didn’t stop talking.  Part of her wanted to clobber him.

angry with husband for secret life

He just keep making the noose tighter, essentially killing off any chance of there ever being any form of reconciliation.  If it wasn’t shocking enough for him to tell her about his other family, he told her that under the circumstances he wouldn’t blame her if she wanted to go look for another man to spend her life with.  It was such an inappropriate thing to say in the moment.   She told me she when she looked back to that moment of the conversation she was remarkably calm.  She said she told her husband that his thinking is warped and he needed counseling.

Then incredibly he asked her if she knew how to fall in love again with someone new.  He told her he would understand if she felt too damaged to love again.  He claimed to have looked into the matter, anticipating that she might feel upset, and proceeded to tell his flabbergasted wife that he wouldn’t blame her if she didn’t ever wanna fall in love again.

He assured her, as he continued his absurd and incredibly insensitive dissertation on loving again, that he was sure she would learn how to find love again after being hurt because she was always the strong one.

Casey quietly told me that if there was ever a time she felt she could committ some awful violent act, it was then.   The audacity of her husband carving out an entire double life with another women, then making this other woman his wife, then having children with this other lady was incredibly shocking and bewildering just by itself.  But then having her husband lecture her on love, of all people, was so shocking she described feeling completely numb in that moment. She said that his words sounded so bizzaire that she believed she was having an out of body experience as if she was looking down on the conversation between the two of them, thinking, “this man is twisted and sick“.

She had known her husband as someone who was somewhat devoid of empathy.  “Feelings of closeness was there, but sometimes it was not, if that makes any sense” she told me.

Sometimes he just wouldn’t get it”, she would say.  He would make these cold, calculating and dispassionate comments and analyses about situations, almost like a robot she explained to me.  So it was always in the back of her mind that her husband simply did not connect to other people in quite the same way as she and most others do.

I told her not to be so hard on herself. When we are in love, we can overlook things and work on making things better in general.  That is the glass if half full most couples have.  No couple is completely compatible in all areas, I reminded here.

She went on to explain that there had been occasions in the past where he seemed disconnected to how certain things he said could be taken wrong.  He seemed a little awkward in some social settings.   In the early phase of their relationship, she thought his behavior odd, but she was attracted to his keen intelligence and other things.

But all those little doubts and disconnects no longer preyed on her mind as they did occasionally throughout their marriage.  She simply didn’t care anymore.

She didn’t want to waste any more emotional energy on her husband or think about his bizarre other life.  She wanted it to end in legal sense as quickly as possible. To that end, she was already in contact with a divorce lawyer and moving forward on that front.  But she instincitvely knew it would take her longer to recover emotionally.

What she was hoping to get from me was an answer to a question that had haunted her ever since she learned of her husband’s double life.  She wanted to know what her future relationship with men might look like.

Would she have difficulty trusting again she wondered?

She asked this question, not so much out of curiosity or practicality, but for months she had been weighed down with waves of distrust for men in general.

She knew it was not logical to assume that all men would be like her husband and betray their spouse in the most horrible way.  But the impact of her soon to be ex husband leading a double life had taken an emotional toll on her well of trust.

She avoided men for the most part.  Her girlfriends kept telling her give it time and that eventually these awful feelings of general distrust with men would subside.

Getting past the issue of trust was the first hurdle in Casey’ mind.  She also wondered if she would find love again.

These two things, love and trust, go hand in hand and Casey understood that.

But she  correctly believed that love deserved a deeper reservoir of trust and she wasn’t sure if she could ever allow herself to trust someone like that again.

What To Do When You Feel Like You’ll Never Find Love Again

finding love again after husband dumps you

What Casey was going through was not that rare or unusual and I told her so.

I also explained to her that her girlfriends were partly right.  One should not expect that after being betrayed in one of the most shocking and horrible ways, that everything in the trust department would be as before.

I explained that in her mind’s eye, psychologically speaking, her husband in a way represented the whole of man.

Now in reality, that is far from the truth.

But in some ways, we are all fragile when it comes to matters of trust, particularly if the opposite sex has hurt us.  When you are married or have a close relationship with a man, you naturally will come to think that you have formed a special bond with that individual and that you can trust him unconditionally.  This is the normal way in which trust is formed.  It increases layer by layer through a lot of experiences.

But when all that is suddenly upended, in your mind, the foundation of trust doesn’t just simply erode.  It can come tumbling down.  And going forward, your state of mind will see trust as a much more difficult wall of faith to erect.

It may look near impossible.  Your left side of the brain, your emotional control center, wants you to avoid pain.  So naturally, you will tell yourself to be much more guarded.  You will be more wary.  And if something happens that takes a smashing ball to your trust in men, then recovering it fully can be very difficult.

That is where Casey stood.

And these feelings of distrust for men and uncertainty of ever falling in love again with a man will be at their peak in the aftermath period following a difficult breakup.

We are talking weeks or even months for some.  For some, without some help and counseling, fully regaining the capacity to trust in men again may not be in the cards.

But that is rare.

What usually happens is over time, the emotional control center of your brain has less control of your thoughts and feelings around this particular topic.  The left side of your brain, the logical and reasoning side, will begin to help shape a more balance view of your possibilities to trust and love again.

But this can take some time, sometimes a lot of time depending on the individual and the individual experience they suffered though.

Another factor that influences how quickly you can overcome some of your irrational fears of never being able to trust or love another again is the quality of the support team around you.

Sometimes to help eliminate your negative notions about not allowing yourself to get close to another man again, you need a champion.

Champions are those who help you defeat the memory of those who were once your enemy so to speak.

Those men that did or said things that hurt you terribly and caused you to begin doubting if you will fall in love once again represent the antagonist.

While your ex husband or boyfriend may now be out of the picture, the grip their past actions have on your current life has to removed.

It so happens that Casey, as I discovered, has a close, loving relationship with her father.

So I told her she should open up to the one man she trusts and loves deeply and talk about her feelings.  While things won’t happen overnight, just the process of sharing and talking about these things with another man you trust and love will help reinforce that it is the fear and anxiety you have about your future that poses as your biggest enemy.

finding love again

Certainly there are some men out there that won’t be the right match for Casey going forward.  That was always the case in the past and will be for the future.

All of us, I told her, try our best to find a mate that best suits our needs and mirrors our same values.  If anything,  I reminded Casey, she is now better equipped to evaluate these things going forward.

But I also reminded her about what I call the Realtionaship Law of the Little Steps.

When you undergo a terribly difficult and transformative experience, you need time to heal and recover.  Trust may not have been the only thing damaged in the failed relationship.  A person’s ego and level of confidence in self  can also take a blow.  Self doubts can creep in as to whether one has brought “all of this” upon themselves (self blame).

Of course it is often absurd to blame oneself when about such things , but it is not unusual for  women and men to become submerged in doubts about their decisions of the past or what they may do with their life that is ahead of them.

When a marriage goes south, there is a host of things that changes in one’s life.  Many of one’s routines are interrupted or are changed.  The challenge is to spend your time immersed in new routines that are rewarding.

All of this takes some time to adapt to.  So learning to take small steps over time to recover and emotionally heal is important.   Learning to do those things that bring you more peace and happiness will take some time and is part of the recovery process.

Casey had withdrawn from life to the extent that she shut he self inside her home to often.  She went through a brief post traumatic stress period following the bizarre revelations.

So I encouraged her to engage more with other people and set up some new, positive routines that would remove her from the home environment that was too similar to what she experienced in the past.

In a way, I wanted her to remake herself and her environment, without really changing who she is.  I told her I wanted her to focus on becoming the best version of herself and gravitate to those activities that bring her pleasure.

For too long she had lived to help make her husband happy.  That all has to change now.  I told her the mindset she should have going forward is to date herself.  To do things for herself and that pleases self.

Through all of this she would learn not to just trust in herself more, but it will translate into her finding someone else who will love and care for her because by doing what I described she will reflect the qualities that people find attractive.

I told Casey that once you heal and believe in yourself completely, the hurdle of finding another a man you can believe in again can be cleared.

But don’t think of it as a race, I told her.  Think of it as the first several steps along a longer journey.  If we race around trying to do things, overly concerned about whether we can love again, we can miss the mark.   Our emotional demons can get the best of us.

While when you are on a journey, the paths you end up taking can sometimes change for the better along the way if you are free from your demons.


How To Get Your Husband To Help With The Baby

One of the saddest problems that come to my attention is when a guy cuts loose from his wife or girlfriend either just before the delivery of their baby or right after the baby is born.

An equally difficult problem to deal with is when the father of the baby to often looks for ways to escape or shirk from their responsibilities in caring and raising their baby child.

That is what we are going to talk about today.

It is heart breaking to hear some of the stories from women who feel dispirited and worn out.  A big part of them wants to make things right with their husband.  They understand this is a big change for him….for everyone. But the responsibility of motherhood requires they focus almost the totality of their attention to their baby or children.

Don’t feel guilty about that.  It is your husband who needs to adjust his mindset.

husband won't help enough with baby

By the way, if you chose to spend the vast majority of your time and energy with your newborn baby, kudos to you.  Your children should never play second fiddle.

Now I am not saying that you can’t work on helping your husband be a better father.  If you have been struggling with getting your absentee husband (father of your child) to pitch in and help with the baby, there are certainly some things you can do to address this problem.

You need not be married and miserable with a new little baby in your life.  By the way, I recently wrote up a post on women who are miserable in marriage.  I sure hope you don’t fall into this category, but if you need some tips, feel free to read up….

I Can’t Stand My Husband: Married and Miserable

In talking with women, for a lot of them, this problem seems to get bigger with each passing year.  When a child is born and the father or boyfriend decides to either bow out or is unwilling to take responsibility for his role in supporting your needs and the needs of the child, that is wrong.

They don’t have a leg to stand on if they cop out when it comes helping you and the baby.  If they wish to argue that they are too busy at work or that they are poorly equipped to care for a baby, just know that such excuses are bull crap.

It is a total crock of nonsense when a husband tries to back out of their responsibilities for caring for their infant baby.   I have very little tolerance for men who withdraw their emotional and physical support when you need it most.

Now, sometimes it not quite that bad.  There may be times in which your husband or boyfriend is willing to help out with your baby.  But when they do so in a half hazard way, with little  enthusiasm, it makes it difficult for you to really count on them.  All this does is create more stress for you.

Do you ever feel that after giving birth to your baby and bringing him or her home, you now have two in the home to care for, specifically your newborn and your childish acting husband?

Guys, if your are reading this, it is not my aim to bash men.  But I cannot ignore the avalanche of complaints I get from women on this topic.

It seems that far too many women with infants are just trying to keep their head above water.  Their daily life is full of fatigue and chaotic schedules.  And if the man of the house is backing away and shirking his duties as father, I am sorry, but that just really doesn’t cut it.

As you probably well know, if you have brought a youngster into this world, the first year or two of the child’s life requires a tremendous investment in time.  I am still baffled and amazed at how single women are able to raise their child and in many cases, do a wonderful job.

My wife and I have a youngster and I frankly cannot imagine a scenario in which she could have done it all by herself.  I am convinced that the welfare of a baby or infant child would be sacrificed if the husband (or boyfriend) was not there to help out on a daily (even hourly) basis.

Yet having an absentee husband in the house is a common complaint I receive.  Women all over reach out to me to express their frustration that there husband is not there for them when it comes to all things associated with raising their child.


Whether it be helping with feeding, bathing, diaper changes, play time, education time, sleep time, or the myriad of other activities that take place when you have a youngster in the household, the care of your baby requires a tag team approach in order for the marriage couple to keep their sanity intact.

So I understand first hand how tough it is on wives out there whose husbands’ are just not doing enough to help with the baby.

It helps to know that your are not alone.  Sometimes I wonder if men are born with a certain chip in their brain that turns on after the baby is born and instructs them to do as little as possible!

Here is short scattering of complaints I hear from women about their husband with regard to his lack of support when raising a newborn:

Chris, my husband is not helping with our baby at night.  I am exhausted and have fallen way behind in sleep.  Yet my husband thinks he must have his 7-8 hours of sleep ever night.  This is horribly unfair and I can’t get it through his head that I need help!  He keeps saying he will, but nothing of  much really gets done.  He goes through the motions and I am left with doing everything.  It’s like he doesn’t want to learn or get involved.   Help!  I am married to I guy who is backpedaling away from his daddy duties.

This is our first child.  How much should my husband help with my baby? We are trying to come up with a schedule and it seems that he only wants to back me up, whatever that means.  To me, he is looking for permission not to help out.  The last time he said he would back me up on something, I ended up doing everything all the time.  I know my husband is taking advantage of me.   

My baby girl’s father doesn’t help much.  I guess he is a baby daddy as you call it.  We are not married.  I don’t think we ever will be after what I have seen and have been going through.  He helped bring this baby into our world, but he seems to not want to embrace any of the responsibility of caring and feeding.  The most I can get him to do is grocery story runs.   He keeps acting like he doesn’t know what to do, but he won’t even try to learn or take direction from me.  He just retreats from making any commitment.  I can pin him down.  I can’t call him a deadbeat dad because he does provide for both of us.  But I feel helpless and exhausted and am afraid that it will only get worse.  

Chris, we have this new baby and my husband is refusing to help at night.  He purposely won’t wake up when our baby cries and when he does stir, he acts like he is really tired and can’t help.  I am breast feeding our baby now, but I am really concerned when we get her on the bottle, my husband will still not step up and do night duty.  I want to scream at him because it is so selfish for him to behave this way. We are supposed to be in this together.  He said all the right things before this child was born.  But as soon as he discovered how hard it is, he looks for every way to back out and shirk his responsibilities.  If it wasn’t for my mother, I would be desperate.

 Chris, my husband and I have this beautiful child.  She is getting to the age where she is really a joy to be around, but it still takes a lot of effort to take care of her.  That is the problem.  My husband doesn’t help with our toddler at all.  He thinks that playtime is his contribution.  But when it comes to spelling me, helping with putting her down, getting her diapers changed, and feeding her, he just disappears.  I have tried everything to get him to chip in, but he resists.  He keeps saying he is afraid he will screw things up.  But I know that is an excuse. 

Help me! I am stuck with a do nothing husband .  We have newborn and I might as well be considered a single mom because he sure it not around when I am desperate for help.  It is getting worse.  I am getting so fatigued and depressed.  Everyday I wake up with resentment .  

Why Won’t Your Husband Help With the Baby?

my boyfriend won't help with baby

A while back, I did a survey with some of the women who participate on this website.  I wanted to explore what might be some of the reasons why men choose to take a backseat in helping their wife with caring for their newborn.  I discovered there were different reasons, depending on the guy and the circumstances.

One thing I found was there are some well-intentioned husbands who don’t know a lot about what to do and were simply petrified.

Understandably, it can be quite an enormous undertaking and most men did not really pay much attention to matters like this if they had baby brothers or sisters.   Some of these men were  ill-equipped and were lacking in basic skills.

Should we give them a pass for that?

Not really.  It’s not like the coming of the baby was a great surprise.

Is it too late for men to get up to speed and really work hard to do their part and chip in as often as needed?

Of course not.

For both husband and wife, adapting your time and schedules to care for your newborn infant is an evolutionary process.

There was also a group of men who were simply (at first) poorly equipped emotionally when it came time to deal with rearing their child.  They intended to help but were shocked to see all of the things one needs to do to simply to care for a newborn.

And as the child became older and the responsibilities of care extended beyond the core duties of  feeding, changing, bathing, and putting down to sleep, these men became overwhelmed with the time crunch.

So should we give these guys a pass?

Heck No!

I am sure it is no picnic for the women who are emotionally trying to deal with the whole experience of raising their child, not to mention trying to get their hormones back to normal levels.

So what I learned is that there is a high percentage of men who simply checked out emotionally.

Instead of looking for ways to help their wife, they simply made the unspoken decision to do as little as possible and let their wife lead in all areas.  While they may have earlier envisioned that the rearing of the child would be like a tag team strategy, these dreams quickly evaporated were subjected to the real rigors of taking care of a baby.

Then there was a group of husbands that made up the majority  of the respondents, I am sorry to say.  I suspect that my survey results were not representative of men in general, but more than half of the women who responded reported that their husband either did nothing in the way of support or very little.

Mind you, these new moms were were frustrated and at their wit’s end.  But I still believe the women because the temptation for a guy to checkout is really high.

And worse, in some cases the wife reported that her husband was a detriment. He made things worse.

In these cases, the men would complain about the way their life had changed for the worse and express resentment toward their spouse for how they had little time to do anything, with complaints of being trapped.  Some women reported their husband spending more time away from home, seemingly looking for ways to avoid their responsibilities as a father.

To survive the stress of their husband not being available to help them, some of the women explained that they adopted a cynical view of their husband’s level of commitment.

As a self-survival mechanism, some of these new moms just assumed they could never expect much if any relief.  Of course, that is truly a sad state of affairs when you have to pencil your husband completely out of the lineup for helping with the baby.

selfish husband with infant

So in summary, why do the men behave this way.  Here are my findings

  •  The husband is simply selfish minded.  Rather than modify their own habits and routines to help their wife with the care of their baby, they elected to avoid responsibility, taking the chauvinistic position that raising a baby is women’s work.
  •  In some cases the husband was poorly equipped emotionally to help with caring for the newborn.  They were petrified that they would do something wrong.  They had little experience around babies and did not want to mess up or make worse the situation.  In these cases, the men were quick to return the baby back to its mother when the least little problem would crop up.  Over time, some of these insecure husbands learned to overcome their fears and the sharing in the care of the baby improved.
  • Some men are experts at adopting avoidance behaviors and removing themselves from any responsibilities because they genuinely believe it is in the child’s best interest to be cared for by the mother.  Either their reasoning arose from cultural or religious notions.  However it happened, some guys are  convinced  they would be poorly suited for this kind of effort or they came to the conclusion in a very analytical way.  I heard from one wife who said her husband was an engineer and that he came up with a mathematical proof that showed his time was better suited doing other things.  Frankly, I told her I thought it was all hogwash and was one of the worst excuses I had ever heard.
  • Some guys don’t like having their life change in this way.  That are not emotionally prepared.  Perhaps their maturity level is inadequate.  It is also possible that if he is pulling away from his baby duties, it could be a sign that he is having second thoughts about the relationship.  Don’t panic.  Much of the time, these thought he has are fleeting and are a product of him just streaming thoughts.  Some husbands have no clue what it takes to raise a child and when they get a taste of it, they can panic and freak out a bit.  They become afraid that life as they once knew it is now gone.  So what do people do when they get panicky?  They either want to fight or flee.  It is not an common reaction when individuals get overcome and panic.  After some time, most of these men get their act together as their emotions come back down to earth.  They learn to cope with it, just like every other mother and father have before them.

How Do You Convince Your Husband To Help With the Child

getting help from hubby with baby girl

So what can one do to get their husband to help with the baby and the myriad of things that need to get done?

First let me start with what you shouldn’t do.

Yelling or screaming at your husband will generally produce the opposite of what you are trying to accomplish.

I know….you are probably at your wit’s end and screaming at him seems and feels like the right thing to do in the moment.

But I would still advise against giving in to what may feel like the perfectly right thing to do.  If you must, do so as a last resort.  Under certain circumstances, it could jar your husband to realize he best get on board with the program of raising this new, beautiful child.

Nevertheless, there is already plenty of screaming and crying coming from the baby.  So be careful of overusing this “scream tactic”. There is a point where you get diminishing returns. Whatever amount of screaming you do to try to jar him to the reality that he needs to help you, rarely nets any positive, long lasting results.

If your husband is looking for a reason to check out of his baby duties and further shirk his responsibilities, you just gave him one.

Nor should you give your husband an ultimatum.  For example, telling your husband that you will destroy his prized card collection (or whatever) if he doesn’t help you by staying up with the baby will probably backfire big time.

Yet another thing you should not do is give up on your husband.  Right now it may seem hopeless and you may feel resigned to the notion that your guy will not change his ways.  But there are always options.

A better approach is to organize, plan and find creative and strategic ways to enlist his help and the help of others.

So let’s look at some solutions

  • Consider drawing up a Baby Plan.  Collaborate with your husband in putting it together.  It will allow you both to put on paper or poster all of the things that typically needs to get done.  Also estimate the time it takes to perform the various tasks.  Include daily schedules for things like times for bathing the baby, tending to the baby clothes, staging the infant’s food,  and stocking up on what your baby needs in terms of clothes, diapers, wipes, toys, etc.  Once you and your husband have identified all the things that need to get done with a baby or infant in the house, it makes it much more clearer to the husband what is all involved.  He may come to appreciate more the enormity of the work and why his involvement is so critical.  All mothers know that the baby related tasks are endless as little infants need a lot of attention and the work changes and evolves over time.  As part of this plan, identify all the things you need to stock up (have in inventory) so your are not running out of thing, having to do last minute runs to your local grocery store.  So at the end of all this planning you should have an organized list of “Things To Do” and Things To Get” and “Schedules”.  This will make it easier for the two of you to agree on what it is your husband can do to help you out.  Block out the hours and duties you need from him.  Men are action and result oriented.  If it is left nebulous, it won’t get done.  But if your husband sees what all the actions are for which they are responsible and it is written down, then they are more likely to be motivated to get these things done.
  • From a strategic and psychological angle, sit down with your husband  and explain to him that you cannot take care of the baby completely by yourself.  No wife should be expected to do it all alone, especially in those early months when fatigue plays such a role in the care taking of the baby. To gain his commitment to help, give him a specific time block you need him for.   Then as a short-term measure, explain to him that another way the two of you can get through this difficult child rearing period is to get help from outside.  Lay out the time period in which you need this help.  It can be friends, family, or you can hire someone part-time to perform some of the tasks.  The key is getting your husband to be solely responsible for that block of time so he can see, hear, and feel how hard it is to take care of his baby.  After that, your husband will be more likely to agree to outside help once he gets a taste of the hardship.
  • Leave your baby in the hands of your husband for a day.   He will learn in great detail how hard it is to be at high alert, attending to the baby’s every need for so long, without break.  If he hesitates or balks at the notion, simply get your purse and phone and kiss him and the baby and make a bee line to the door.  Now you are not leaving him completely in the lurch.  Prior to leaving, leave him specific instructions that lay out what he needs to do and when.  Identify all the key priorities such as how much formula and baby food the baby will need.  Stage it out on the table for each of the time blocks.  Record the nap time periods and the wake up routines.  Also draw up a list of extra duties he can perform (e.g. washing and drying clothes, cleaning house, emptying diaper bag, cleaning dishes, sanitizing bottles, etc) if he really wants to shine and impress you.  If your husband has an ounce of love for the baby, self-respect and a competitive streak, he will make it through just fine.  When it’s all done, he will have a newfound appreciation of what moms go through every day.
  • Don’t assume that your husband is as incompetent or unwilling as you may think.  Turn it into a challenge.  Men like challenges.  Give him 3 – 5 key tasks and create some printable Weekly Baby Challenge Posters.  Hang these posters around the house.  It will not only remind him of what he has to do, but these posters should also showcase all of the tasks that you are doing for the care of the baby.  That way, he can see his few tasks are dwarfed against the multitude of things you are doing.  Ask him to check of each task he completes so he can see progress.   Once he gets engaged and realizes what is involved he will not only  value what you do much more, but his level of guilt will increase when he sees all the things you are doing or if he slacks and chooses not to help you out.

Why Does My Husband Treat Me So Badly

Sometimes women reach out to me and complain that their husband mistreats them and is really a mean guy and if they had known he was such a louse they would never had married him.

In the course of the conversation, these ladies will wonder out loud why their husband treats them so badly.  Sometimes they will question if they are at fault or if they unwittingly contributed to their husband’s behavior and outbursts.  They will tell me that their husband wasn’t this way in the beginning of the marriage.

But now he is a monster in their eyes.

husband treats me poorly

It is a sad side of my work, but far too often I come across women who have attached themselves to a husband who are the equivalent of a bad boy. I get reports of  husbands that mistreat, shout and yell at their wives far too often.

I am told about guys who are just downright mean and ugly, cursing at their wife and telling her she is worthless.

Why do some men act this way?

Is it something that is part of their make up?  Were they born this way?

Were they treated this way, so they just are behaving in the way of their past?

Or is it something you, the wife, are doing that triggers the outburst and poor treatment?

Well….I can tell you from experience it is seldom anything you did.  Sure, you are far from perfect.  Who is?  But a mean spirited husband didn’t get that way because of you.

So let me say it again.

If you are married to a guy who treats you badly, rarely is it your fault.  The fault lies with the person who is exhibiting such distasteful, rude and unpleasant, or even disgusting behavior.

When Is It Time To Ditch and Divorce Your Husband

So should you ditch you man?  I get into this topic later in this post, but for further reading you should also check out this article I recently wrote…

So what can you do about it?  That is the question I most often get.  There is usually three things a wife who reaches out to me wants to know.

One thing they will ask me about is how they can better tolerate living with such an unpleasant person. They may not be ready to call it quits.  The situation may not have risen to a level where they feel the marriage is in serious jeopardy.  So they are interested in learning how to manage their own stress levels and keep their husband in line.  With this group, I find myself steering them away from the notion that they should learn to better cope with a husband who to often gives in to hateful behavior.  It is better to address the real problem, namely the husband’s treatment of his wife.

A second thing some women will need help with is what they can do to get their husband to stop acting so poorly.  They want him to stop hurting their feelings and being so mean and disrespectful to them.  The solutions to these problems are different depending on the frequency and severity of the husband’s behavior. Seldom do I lead with a negative, but I will tell women that if their husband has been behaving this way for a long time, that is a huge problem.  If your man consistently mistreats you, then don’t expect that he will change much or if at all unless there is a major intervention.  We will discuss this more later.

The third area that some of these women wish to explore is whether the relationship is worth sticking out.  They want to know if their husband will ever change his selfish and cruel ways because they are of the mind to bolt.

So with regard to this third point, these women are looking for advice on how to leave their husbands. Sometimes I talk with women who are so entrenched in the relationship, they have lost sight of just how bad and abusive the relationship has become.  This much more common than people realize.

my husband is cruel to me

In certain cases, I find myself steering my advice to these women in such a way to help them see how dysfunctional their situation has become so that they will consider getting out of the clutches of a twisted and cruel minded husband.

So I get a lot of queries along this topic.

Often they are like cries for help and it is heartbreaking to hear their stories. You can hear the pain.  You can also see the sense of futility some of these women express.

But I tell them all,  there is a door you can walk through that leads you away from this pain.  And this door can lead you to a place in which your husband is still part of your life.  Or it can lead you to another place where you seldom if ever see him again, and he cannot hurt you anymore.

Far too many women suffer poor treatment from their husband or boyfriend. For example….

My husband treats me bad and seems totally disgusted me.  What should I do because I am coming apart.

I know I don’t deserve this.  My husband is awful to me.  He treats me badly but I am not sure if I should leave because of the kids and we have so much history.

I know when a man treats you badly, you shouldn’t put up with it.  But its like I am stuck in quicksand and just don’t know how to get out. 

He treats and talks to me like dirt.  I deserve better and I am going to leave him.  What do I do first?  I am ready to end this, but I don’t want it to go off the rails.

What do you do when someone you love treats you badly?  Should you just get away for a while?  Give him an ultimatum?  Move out permanently? 

My boyfriend treats me badly but I love him still and don’t want things to end.  I keep hoping we will turn the corner.  What are the chances that he will change?  My mother tells me it’s a lost cause. 

Know That You Are Not At Fault

not your fault he mistreats you

Clearly, it is a sad situation when a woman is married to a man who mistreats her emotionally and uses bullying tactics to intimidate, dominate and make her submissive.

Just allowing these women to tell their story is therapeutic for them in the short run.  Knowing that they are not alone and that there are other women out there who are involved in marriage or relationship in which their man behaves badly helps them see that it not something they have done wrong.

That is one of the reasons why I started up a Private Facebook Support and Recovery Group.

Women who find themselves being belittled or blamed for seemingly everything, should know that it is not their fault.  Their husbands may have told them for years about how worthless they are and how everything that is wrong with the marriage is their fault.  But that is a LIE.

Humans can be cruel and treat each other horribly.   Both husbands and wives can be an instigator and a victim.

Today we are talking about husbands who mistreat their wife in all sorts of ways.  But in some marriages, mistreatment is a two-way street.

But let’s keep the focus on those women who feel beaten down.

And that is a problem in some of these spousal emotional abuse cases.  The husband may have so traumatized his wife, beating down her sense of self-worth, that she may come to believe that she is to blame or that she is not doing enough or holding up her end.

After all, in most of these cases, the abusive husband is constantly demeaning his wife, telling her how she is stupid or useless and wrong about everything.  If one hears that enough, it can cause you to lose self-esteem and even begin to question whether some of the put downs and ugly comments might be true.

So while I am not miracle worker, I do try to help lift these women’s spirit and hopes and open up their eyes to the path of other possibilities.  Because the truth is that while you may feel trapped in a relationship and while you may feel abused;  there is almost always a door you can walk through that will lead you away from those who wish to bring you down and make you feel bad about yourself.

Why Does You Husband Act So Poorly?

you deserve better than him

Now that you know that his poor treatment of you is rarely your fault, it begs the question why does your man act this way?

What makes him such a hard person to live with and is there anything you can do about it?  Can your husband change or is that notion really just chasing a pipe dream?

In my experience, if your husband has been mistreating you for most of the time you have been together, then the problem probably originates deep within the core of his personality and past experiences.

His attitudes toward women or people in general most likely formed long before he met you.  It is likely the mean-spirited comments directed at you and lack of consideration for your feelings is a product of both his genetic make up and the environment he was exposed to when growing up.  We are all a product of our genes, how we are raised, and other influencers.

I don’t believe one single factor is responsible for how a man ultimately treats his wife.  Men are not born to be rotten to their wives.  Though they may exhibit certain unattractive behaviors caused by the way their brain is formed, it not the only that thing that causes them to be a guy who constantly belittles and picks on his wife.

I think how a guy ends up treating his wife is a product of  many factors.  Genetics, environmental influences, the quality of the relationship match (compatibility), attitudes about marriage, core values, attachment styles and daily stress can all contribute to how a guy ultimately behaves toward his wife.

No single factor can be blamed or credited for how a person was molded.

Just because your husband may have been raised in the most loving and supportive environment, won’t mean that he will be a wonderful and loving guy.  All the chips could have been stacked against him early in life, but through the sheer force of his personality and core beliefs, he may turn out to be a kind and considerate man.

The truth every man has certain strengths and weaknesses  he brings to the relationship.  And a man’s wife also has certain strengths and weaknesses.  How the two people come together is largely a function of how these individuals combine their strengths and weaknesses.  How they mesh or dovetail can be a complicated matter when you pull back the layers and look closely.

So the question of why your husband may act a certain way is in no way a simple matter to fully understand.  In coming up with potentials solutions, it helps to gain some insights.

But our focus today is dealing with outcomes, right?  Let’s assume you have tried a lot of things on your end and it is getting you no where.   Specifically, what should you do if you are stuck in an unhappy and emotionally unhealthy marriage?

Should You End It When He Treats You Badly?

ending it with your husband

So what are the conditions in which you should simply tell your husband that you no longer want to move forward with the relationship?

When do things get bad enough that it is unhealthy for you to stay in the marriage?

Clearly, if your husband’s poor treatment of you has been going on for a long time and there have been good faith efforts made to try to change, one is left wondering whether the match was suitable in the first place.

Sometimes we just don’t choose the right person for ourselves.

It is really not such an easy thing to do because in the beginning of every courtship there is this undeniable force that gets in the way of our rationale mind.

The hormones that are triggered when we are falling in love can create a false sense that we are with the most wonderful person that has ever existed.   All we can think of when we are “falling in love” is being with this other person.  Our emotional and physical arousal to a person we are falling in love with can cause us to obsess over the person and convince us that the match is made in heaven.

It is almost like we have lost control of our rationale minds.  We can become blind to problems of compatibility.  When we encounter or notice problems in our lover’s personality or raise questions about their behavior, we are more prone to explain it away.  We rationalize that it is just something in passing.

In the beginning of a relationship, people tend to highlight the positive and wash away the negatives.  Often, our lover doesn’t showcase their weaknesses.  They hide certain unattractive qualities and behaviors because they are interested in attracting you.  That is not necessarily a devious thing.  We all want to put on our “best face”.

It may seem impossible to you at the time that your soon to be husband will eventually reveal himself as a selfish bad boy, but this is an common occurrence in relationships.

The question becomes when is enough, enough.

5 Things To Look For Before You Bail Out of Your Marriage

when to bail out of marriage

In dealing with this problem, I came up with a simple checklist.

It is not foolproof.  But if you can honestly check off each of these 5 things, then you really have to ask yourself what are you doing in the relationship.

Sometimes we just have to accept that we chose wrong.  Sure, breaking up and ending a marriage will bring on its on set of problems.  But these issues are almost always over the short-term and will eventually subside and end.    Staying  with someone who is abusive and treats you badly for the long haul is a far worst scenario.

Obviously, these are not easy decisions.

So consider carefully what is going on in your marriage and whether your husband’s behavior is so bad that it has risen to a level where you simply cannot tolerate living life in such away.

Look at this checklist and decide if these descriptions captures the essence of your marriage situation.  If each ( or most) of these 5 things are happening in your life, to the degree described, then you should give serious consideration to getting off the relationship track you are on and that might mean ending things for a significant period of time or permanently.

  1.  You have been together for multiple years.  Your husband is emotionally and physically abusive frequently.  He insults you and your intelligence and those around you that you love.  His treatments of you makes you feel like a lesser person. He may be a control freak insisting that most everything be done his way and if not, he explodes with anger or tries to bully you.  He often raises his voice and uses ugly words to describe you or uses threatening langauge to make you do things you don’t want to do.
  2.  You and your husband often can’t get along.  He starts most of the arguments.  Sometimes he threatens to strike you or he pushes you or gets physical in your presence by slamming, kicking or breaking objects.  These altercations can get very loud and frightening and you become afraid for your safety.  You live almost every day with anxiety about your safety or whether your husband will have another upsetting outburst.
  3. Your husband’s mood is unpredictable.  You feel like you are on pins and needles.  In one moment he can be very loving, then he can simply crack and just come apart blaming you or whoever is around.  You are often afraid to argue or disagree with him, even on the smallest of points.  Your husband can act cruelly and when things go wrong, he takes it out on you.  Sometimes your husband is influenced by alcohol or drugs which negatively impacts his behavior
  4. The environment in the home you both live in is dreary and sad.  You feel like you often want to escape.  You have been thinking about leaving him for a long time, but don’t know whether you should or how to.  In your heart, you know the marriage will not get better and will probably get worse.  You often feel depressed and your emotional health is deteriorating.  You have possibly talked to close friends or close family members about your situation and are starting to feel desperate about what to do.
  5. You can honestly say that you have often spoken to your husband about how his actions are hurting you and the marriage.  You have given him examples of his behavior and have warned him that you cannot tolerate this kind of behavior.  You have strongly encouraged him to go with you to see a marriage counselor because you believe the marriage is failing.  He has declined or if he agreed, he quickly relapsed to his old ways.


Why Does Your Wife Lie To You So Much

If you stumbled across this particular post, I would imagine there will be a wide range of opinions about what I have to say regarding the topic of whether your wife spins far too many lies and what is behind it all.

I admit, the headline is an attention grabber.  From the get go, if you really think about it, the notion that women lie far too often to their husbands is quite flawed.

The truth is that husbands lie to their wives just as often across a wide spectrum of occasions and situations.


And as to the quantity of lies that might be passing back and forth between husband and wife, it is really a function of how one technically defines a lie.

After all, we all lie, true?

Am I lying now?

I sure don’t think so.

Because the truth is we all lie.

We all lie in different ways.  Big lies.  Little lies. White lies.

Sometimes we are not even aware that what we are saying is not truthful.

And sometimes we know that what we are saying is deceitful, but we do it anyway because we wish to protect someone’s feelings.

Would that be a good lie if your wife is trying to protect you from getting your feelings hurt?

Indeed, shouldn’t she get some brownie points for looking out for your feelings?

Is there ever such a thing as a good lie?

I actually think so, though I am sure purists may disagree.  They would argue that that misstating the truth can later open the floodgates for deceitful behavior.  That might be true too, but we can all go down that road of second guessing the intended outcome.

can I trust my wife to be upfront

Sometimes we are all guilty of stretching or obscuring the truth in order to protect those we love. Though sometimes we say we are doing such a thing for the wrong reasons.

Yep, being deceitful is a tricky proposition.  So don’t be too eager to crucify your wife for not coming clean about something.  Better to trace the lie back to its source.  I will talk about that more a bit later.

Now sometimes the source of the lie will not warm your heart.  Such is the case if the lie stems from an affair.  I discussed this recently in this post….

Is My Wife Having An Emotional Affair

By the way, most of the time, when your wife is coloring the truth, you won’t even know it.


Is it because women lie so much?

No, of course not.  Women are no more bigger liars than men.  I just think they are somewhat more skillful in hiding it.  But that is a long story and I won’t be going there today.  Just consider the possibility that women, including your wife, may have evolved to be a bit more clever is disguising the truth.

All humans find it within them to tell a lie far more than you probably realize or even would care to admit.

Studies have been done that show it starts pretty darn early in our lives.  I am talking like 5 or 6 years of age.  Do you ever wonder where these little kids learned to lie?  You are right if you guessed they learned it from their parents and others close to them.  But scientists also think there is an innate motivation for the little ones to lie on occasion.  It relates to self interest and also avoiding consequences.  Sounds familiar doesn’t it.  Kinda like why we adults lie!

Now some people might say that when your wife lies, she must be hiding something.  But rarely does such a blanket statement capture the truth of the situation.  Women (and men for that matter) may find it necessary to bend the truth for a variety of reasons.

And often, it is not due to her wanting to hide something from you.  What she maybe doing is trying to save you from something, namely yourself.

I have had cases in which a husband’s wife has chosen not to tell him the truth about a matter because she knows it might upset her husband’s fragile ego.

I have had other cases where the wife was merely being protective of her husband and went along with something she knew was not true.

Sometimes your wife may tell a lie simply because she is exhausted and just doesn’t have it in her to argue or debate a point.

Sometimes what you take as a lie from your wife is really just a misunderstanding or misinterpretation of the known facts.  In such cases, your spouse may not be trying to intentionally mislead you.  Rather she may just have a different memory or understanding about an event or something that the two of your previously agreed to.

is she really a liar

So just a little word of advice.

Don’t be too quick to cast that first stone if the lie doesn’t amount to something that is really important or meaningful.

We all do it.

Sometimes for good and bad reasons.

Research reveals we lie about twice a day and that men actually lie more frequently than women.  But personally, I think the frequency of lies being told is far greater, particularly if you include the fact that we often are liars to ourselves.

I decided to pose this question about lying to a bunch of guys.

Among some of the men I spoke to about this topic, the questions and comments I got ranged from the fear their otherwise reliable and trustworthy wife was hiding something to those who were insistent that they had married a compulsive liar.

For example, the men complained that…

My spouse lies about all the little things.  How can I trust her on the big things?

Something must be going on.  Usually she is trustworthy. All of a sudden I am catching her in all kinds of shady and questionable assertions about her whereabouts.

What is the best way to confront my wife? I think she is outright lying to me?

I know she just goes along with stuff to avoid conflict.  But something is up.  What can I do to get her to simply tell me what is going on?

I am disgusted with her deceit. How do I deal with my wife that is constantly hiding things from me.  I know I get crazy about this sometimes and she shuts down.  

I have lost complete trust in my wife.  Why should I believe anything she tells me?

Should we even bother to try to make this work? I am not sure I even want to be with someone who is such a liar.

As you can see from some of these statements, suspicions that one’s wife is not trustworthy and is lying can create a lot of ugly fallout.  We are often quick to anger when we think someone we previously trusted so much, has stooped to telling us untruths at ever corner.

To make matters worse,  when we are angry, we seldom see the full picture.  We can turn off our empathy and default right into playing victim.

Look, no one likes being lied to.   And if the untruths are really piling up, then most definitely something terribly wrong and the whole foundation of the marriage needs work.

But we should be reminded that lies are often told for many different reasons and if you are off playing the recrimination game or allowing your hurt feelings to never get put to bed, then you are focusing on the wrong things.

It is natural for our fertile imaginations to run wild when we suspect our spouse is lying to us.  But before you condemn your wife for her transgression, try getting to the root of why she may be lying.  That is where you want to direct the spotlight.

So let’s circle back to the question of the post.

Why do wives lie to their husbands?

Is there something you should do?  I have partially answer that.  But before we proceed further, let’s agree that we could easily remove the word “wives” and replace it with “husbands” too.

None of us are immune to the temptation to bend the truth.

We all have told a fib or two, or three, etc.  So again, don’t be so harsh in your judgement. Now I realize some lies hurt more than others.  And I am not saying you shouldn’t feel bad.  Nor am I saying that since we all lie, it should be swept under the carpet.

I am not saying those things at all.

I just think the most pragmatic thing to do is to try to trace the lie to its origin.  Then you will learn something more about what motivated the untruth and that is something worthwhile to know.  That is something you can act on so it doesn’t trigger future deceptions.

And as to the issue of married men and women lying frequently to each other, let me suggest you keep reading.  You might just gain a new insight on how to save your relationship.   Because clearly, a marriage filled with lies is one that is on the verge of crumbling down.

So What Does It Mean When Your Wife Lies A lot

liar liar pants on fire

First, let me come to the defense of women and wives.

There are a lot of men who can be difficult to live with due to any number of reasons.  This may cause their spouse to hold back from opening up.  They may be frozen with fear that a truthful utterance will cause their husband to become  unglued or more upset.

In such a case, the wife is simply trying to protect herself and the relationship from any unnecessary emotional chaos.  She may be trying to protect the kids.  Such a wife may be trying to protect her husband’s fragile ego.

I have seen plenty of relationships go sour when the husband becomes irate when he thinks the wife is hiding some deep dark secret.  Maybe he is a control freak or is obsessed and simply can’t accept the truth or is convinced there is a lie at the heart of all things. Perhaps the wife got a phone call from an old boyfriend and was afraid to say anything about it to her husband.  Maybe she goes out to have a coffee with some male friends just to catch up.  Nothing happens. But then as things often go, the truth of their encounter surfaces and everything gets blown out of proportion.

OK, so let’s say you have been married a few years and you have come to believe that your wife has difficulty telling you the truth.   The first thing I would ask you to do is question whether your standard for truth and lies is realistic.  Sometimes we can fall into the trap of being far too judgmental about matters of truth-telling.

For example, let’s say you are the kind of guy who is often jealous.  Or let’ say you are a little obsessive about everything that goes on and whether it squares with your version of the facts.  Or consider the possibility that the relationship you are in is one where the personal power balance is slanted way in your favor.

Under these circumstances, the marital environment may be such that one partner is uncomfortable with telling the other the whole truth and nothing but the truth.  So what comes off as lies and deceit from your perspective, is really a reflection of your wife’s discomfort with the communication levels in the marriage.

But what if things are not that way in your marriage.  Let’s assume there are no jealousy or obsession traps unfolding.  Let’s say that the husband is not a control freak such that the wife is afraid to say or do anything to upset the apple cart, prompting her to sometimes tell little white lies or even big whoppers.

What does one do when you discover that your wife seems to have a penchant for telling you things that are untrue?

Let’s say this is her default behavior and it is engrained in her behavior.

Well, the first thing you need to figure out is what is driving her to act this way and how long has it been going.  Is it a psychological survivor mechanism that she adopted early in her life?  Or does she have some narcissistic tendencies and lies are like lollipops.

Has she always been fast and loose with the facts since you have known her?  Or is this something new that has recently unfolded in your life together?

Does her lies compound, such that one lie leads to another, then another?

This could be a sign of a compulsion to be deceitful and is probably the worst kind of liar.  Or  it could be fear that drives her behavior.  Your wife may be guilty of telling you some really big bad lies for fear that the truth will break up the marriage.

This kind of situation may unfold if your wife has done a terrible wrong, such as having an affair or making a very important decision without your knowledge and participation.

Or you the husband could be the source of her fear.

Don’t Be So Quick To Judge Your Wife

don't judge your wife so soon

So as you can see, there are a number of reasons why your wife may find it necessary to keep the truth from you.

Often, the common denominator is fear.

That is right.  From a psychological perspective, most lies are the offspring of  fear.

Such is the case for your lies as well.

We fear getting in trouble for something.

We fear being wrong.

We are afraid of being hurt.

We fear being discovered.

We are afraid of disappointing or being disappointed.

We fear losing the one we love.

So don’t rush to judgement.   It may be that your wife is battling through her fears, however small or large they may be.

So if your wife tell you a fib, it doesn’t necessarily mean that she is a bad person or is corrupt of character.

Nor does it necessarily mean that she can’t be trusted.

Now I am not saying that it is impossible for your wife to be devious in all respects, out to primarily satisfy her own agenda.  If that is what is driving the lies, then you have a bigger problem than the collection of lies that have been told.  Being married to such a person is usually going to end badly.

Bur jumping to conclusions before you understand the underlying events or behavior that led up to her decision to deceive you would be a mistake.

Instead of casting blame, seek first to understand.

This may also be a time to for you to look in the mirror.  Is there something you have done or are doing that would cause your wife to be reluctant to tell you the truth about some matter?

How would you even know unless you explore.  Until you get to the root of where the lie has emerged, you will get no where and there will be little progress in rebuilding trust.

It is easy for us to be angered and feel hurt.  That is a primal emotion that is always lingering near the surface.  And when you discover that you are lied to by your wife, the obvious reaction is to blame and to feel like a victim.

But I would argue that while it is certainly hard to swim upstream against the tide of such emotion, you would be better off to not take the lie so personally.

If you can set aside your own ego and sense of importance and embrace a selfless demeanor in trying to understand the origins of your wife’s mistruth, you will draw closer to the truth that eventually needs to come out for trust to be restored.

Far too often I have seen relationships endure unecessary hardship because neither party showed tolerance.

Once you make that giant leap to remind yourself and accept that your wife’s lie is probably not worse than lies you have told yourself, then you have taken a big step to help make things right.