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My Husband Doesn’t Believe Our Marriage Is In Trouble, But I Know That It Is

I recently received an email from a wife who was afraid that her marriage was in real trouble. For quite some time now, she had noticed a shift in the way that she and her husband interacted with one another.  At first, she tried to tell herself that time had made them comfortable and that no one could keep the spark burning red hot after so many years.  But, she knew that this was different.  Rather than losing the spark, they had lost the general feelings of affection and respect for one another.  They were living sort of like roommates.  There were fights, to be sure, but more troubling to her was the lack of laughter and the fact that her husband seemed to prefer his friends over her, which was an entirely new and recent thing.

However, when she mentioned the fact that she felt the marriage was in trouble to her husband, he scoffed at this and told her that she was “expecting too much.”  He conceded that things had changed, but felt it was due more to where they were in their lives than real problems in the marriage.  Still, he wasn’t willing to do anything to improve things, nor would he admit to any problems. The wife just did not feel right about ignoring what she knew to be true.  She wanted to know how she should address and fix this without his cooperation.  I will tell you what I told her in the following article.

Can You Fix A Troubled Marriage On Your Own?:  It was pretty clear to me that her husband was not likely to come around any time soon.  If she waited for him, she might well have waited too long.  I was afraid that he might only come around once they were at each other’s throats or barely acknowledging each other’s presence.  By this time, a lot of harm would’ve been done and saving the marriage might be a lot harder than it needed to be.

It was so frustrating and troubling to her to think that his apathy could destroy their marriage, but she knew from experience that she wasn’t really going to be able to change his mind.  However, I reminded her that she very much had control over one thing – and that was herself.  She could very much control how much time and effort she put into her marriage in the coming, days, weeks, and months.  She doubted that changing only one person in a marriage would have a huge impact, but I assured her that not only could it have an impact on the marriage, it could absolutely save it.  I have seen it happen too many times to count and I have personally experienced it.

Once you change your own attitude and your own actions, then the environment in which the marriage is living is invariably going to change and improve.  And when this happens, the perceptions and feelings follow suit and then change for the better as well.

Changing Attitudes, Changing Actions, Changing Feelings, And A Saved Marriage:  Before we discuss where we want to go, let’s think about where you’ve come from.  Because I bet it’s safe to say that once upon a time, your marriage looked a lot differently.  You were probably closely bonded, quite committed and quite happy. It’s quite possible you could not even imagine the worries that are on your horizon right now.  What was different about the relationship then?

I have to tell you that often when I ask this question, people will give answers that range from things like “we were young then,” or “we didn’t have all the worries that we have today,” or “we were different people.” I suppose that all of these things could be true.  But, generally speaking, it all comes down to changing circumstances and priorities.  When we go from the fairy tale world of being “in love” and return to “real life,” things eventually change quite dramatically.

We don’t do this on purpose or even consciously.  We really do have good intentions and genuine feelings in our hearts.  But, we have to support our households, do our jobs, look out for our parents, our kids, and others that we care about.  So the days where we can stare into each others eyes and share our far away dreams start to wane.  And, this is the normal course of things but this comes with a high price. 

The lack of time and concentrated, repetitive effort that is not being poured into the relationship will eventually manifests itself in a lack of intimacy and a new apathy.  You may not notice it much at first, but as the distance widens, you begin to sense the trouble.  He may not.  Men are less perceptive in this way.  But, that does not mean that you should not take action and act on what is your reality.

You have complete control over changing up the circumstances and the environment that either nurtures or deteriorates your marriage.  Now is the time to control what you can.  You know what brings the two of you closer.  You know the things that you always vowed to do.  You know the promises that you made to this person.  You likely remember very well when you were sure that you’d always feel the same way. 

Now is the time take a hard look at your priorities.  Because in truth, a strong and happy marriage is going to benefit every area in your life.  Your husband may well deny that anything is wrong, but he’s probably also not going to fight you when you begin bringing a little joy and laughter back to your lives. He may think it’s all odd and he may not open his arms and heart immediately, but take small steps, embrace small improvements, and I guarantee you will notice a difference that will make you (and him) want to continue on.

Unfortunately for me, I ignored the little voice that told me that my marriage was in trouble until it was almost too late. I just told myself that we were “comfortable” rather than accepting that we were growing apart. This almost cost me my marriage. Luckily, over time (and by taking calculated baby steps), I was able to reestablish intimacy and bring back his love. You can read a very personal story on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com

Leslie Cane’s blog is at http://isavedmymarriage.com.  She enjoys sharing the story of how she saved her own marriage to help others.

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