How to exist in a marriage?
I used the word exist ; as I don't really have a life inside my marriage. I exist in more of an agreement, ie: I go to work I am the provider, I have an extremely high pressure high stress job which I enjoy very much which I am good at as well. Its also a very good distraction for me.
Like many people who post here I suffer from anxiety and depression greatly. I am medicated for it accordingly which take the edge off life. I have been off and on meds as in my own way have been trying to convince myself I don't have mental health issues. I am at peace with that now.
I will dart around alot of my mind is a messy place but try to get what I want to say across.
My marriage is a convenience. I used to love my wife. Somewhere deep down inside is a register of exactly that. But theres no feeling there any more which co-incides with that same register. Well there might be but I think I block it out. I am amazing at blocking things/avoidance tactics as my psych calls it so its there somewhere, just masked. I go to work, I help out around the house (significantly more of late, as my wife works) and try to be a husband who is actually in touch and contributes to the family, take my kids to events and things they do etc while she sleeps and or does other stuff. But after all this I am alone. I am lonely in my marriage. I am disconnected from someone who i married years and years ago and have been with all my life.
My marriage (in my eyes) is failing. I sleep in a different place in the house to my wife now. There has not been intimacy in what feels like forever, the last time I tried to initiate it it was turned into a joke so in my own mind at that point I concluded any action to ever try again, ie: I gave up. No I don't feel worthless, yes I am overweight, but I do feel incredibly rejected, and I am angry about it. I would never hit or physically abuse my wife ; I could not do that to another person hell I don't like hurting anything, but I do not have alot of time for her any more, and respect has gone out the window. This is not healthy and born of the continual rejection and now frustration.
Sadly I have a high sex drive and she has negative infinity sex drive. So I satisfy myself. That fixes the pleasure bit, however, I am still awfully alone and lack connection that intimacy brings.
I am sorry to hear about your lonliness, and that you feel a huge disconnect in your marriage. I believe these things are best discussed deeply and figured out with your partner in the end. But first you may need to think about what parts of your relationship are disconnected- Is it only sexual, or are you disconnected mentally and emotionally? Are you still setting goals together and dealing with common problems together? When was the last time you really talked?
Its likely your wife is feeling it too, and she cannot connect sexually if mental and emotional connection isn't there also. Another possibility is she is experiencing menopause or pain caused by sex? Is she enjoying sex with you, do you please her or only yourself? The sex thing is a whole other topic, you need to get talking and get her talking. Its important. Always remember to speak kindly and don't blame one another for what's happened. Just be accountable, and try to move forward.
Meds can switch you off emotionally in some ways, consider their impact as well.
Bindi ; getting back to your response, thanks for listening ;
mentally disconnected ; definately - she doesn't get me any more at all. emotionally, i block her out and I know she feels it but i'm doing it to protect myself against the continual rejection i feel. i also feel like i do it on purpose, ie: why even bother any more? goals, none, problems, yes we deal with things as they come up. talked? hardly ever, she is more interested in TV or other things. from time to time TBH it seems like she is switched off as well, or uses TV to distract herself from dealing with the real issue at hand ...
nope, no menopause, no pain from sex. yes i do please her first and i come last ....
Its no problem, its great you are talking about it Sye. I'm sorry for how rejected and hurt you feel by the disconnect in your marriage. Unless there's a huge incompatibility between you, I do believe these things can be repaired. Where I really hope you'll get with this is talking to her about how you feel, she's your best friend and your partner.
Is something making you afraid to talk to her about how you feel?
I wrote alot more this morning, but it got eaten in the 2500 character limit.
I've tried to talk about it in the past. Many, many, many times. Things will improve for a week or two, and, then, back to the usual disconnect and hum drum. I've given up because nothing changes. Yes there is a disconnect between us know, we're just two people living under the same roof. I don't know how to get through to her. I know with all my mental health stuff going on, while I've made piece with it I don't think she can cope with the space I am in any more which, I dunno I can't even begin to understand. Alot of the time with depression I know there is all the RUOK stuff but to be honest, I don't need people asking me that, I actually find it pretty annoying, no, I'm not OK, I'm never going to be OK ever again.
Would I consider my wife my best friend? No. I could talk to my best friend, but, I he moved away and I only talk to him sometimes now. I can't talk to her. Am I afraid of hurting her, yep. I internalise alot of my shit just to cover it up in the hope it will go away but it doesn't.
What makes it worse for me now is I have to have time off work for the stupid Xmas break and my anxiety is in overdrive, I am good at my work and not much else and to not have that at the moment leaves me very vulnerable and with my own thoughts, which is not good.
I know where peace is in all this mess, I have that, that keeps me going, but thats a good win for me and not a good win for everyone else. But its always there and its good comfort knowing it is.
I hope it's ok if I join the conversation? Hello again Bindi, you have a gift for good advice!
What my first thought reading your posts was "do both you and your wife want your marriage to work?".
You are unhappy. Your wife sounds unhappy too. So to me the big question is do you want to try and does she? If not... Why are you both staying and feeling low?
I read books by an author called Athol Kay once which another member mentioned which I found facinating. He said we cannot control what we find unconsciously find attractive. That in marriage we get lazy and take eachother for granted. That one of the best ways to get her attention is to improve yourself. His works are worth a read.
You mentioned you are overweight, that you work very hard. What about fun? What about passion and excitement? What about self care? It is very easy to get stuck in a routine and just accept that your partner will be there for you. But is that really enough? I don't think so personally. That said ease don't think I'm judging (goodness knows I'm no looker and could use a diet). It just made sense to me that self confidence and passion (be it hobbies or anything) and caring for yourself physically are all attractive things.
What have you got to lose by focusing on yourself? Manging your health (mental too) and finding new hobbies outside of work. Worst case scenario your wife still isn't attracted and your marriage ends but someone else may notice the changes in you.
Pretty well my marriage ended up very similar, my wife slept in another room and even years before this intimacy
She left me a few times taking our 2 sons when they were young and then finally let me again taking her mother with her, our sons were adults then and finally divorced me.
It was a marriage that I thought could never be broken apart, it would be impossible for this to ever happen, but yes unfortunately it did.
She had two brothers who divorced but it didn't happen with any of my 4 siblings, so yes it was a total shock, but now I live by myself with my
I know what you have said, and please if you would like to reply back to me that's great. Geoff.
So sorry Sye, I would feel very lonely in that situation too. I doubt very much that your wife is concerned about your weight or anything. Spouses usually desire one another because of the connection they feel and need from one another, and because of who each other are as people. Its most likely the disconnection is impacting her sex drive, and maybe she's feeling the same kind of hopelessness you are feeling. She may not understand that making love is the only connection you feel you have left right now, that you rely on it and need it. And yet the only way she will understand is if you explain it to her. Its sounds like you are afraid she no longer cares, which so awful for you. Ask yourself, do you really believe in your heart she no longer cares? Or could it be that depression and anxiety sometimes distort your feelings and outlook? Or is it somewhere in between?
Sorry to hear nothing has changed for you. Have you been able to find any activies that help you feel good about yourself regardless of your lack of connection at home? Made any new friends? Found a hobby? That sort of thing.
Sometimes if only one partner wants change the other will try for a while and then things just creep back as before because trying is hard work. And you both have to want change.
Have you asked your wife if she is happy? If things remained as they are would she really care?
My friend left her husband last year. Because she had asked in every manner possible for change. And he didn't listen. Didn't want to change because things suited him as they were. So she left.
He was devestated and curiously enough surprised. It took almost a year of therapy for him to realise that unless he genuinely wanted things to be different too he was going to lose his family. Because performing for another for a little while just doesn't work.
Maybe that is where you are at. Having the honest conversation. We have no connection. I don't want to have a housemate I want my wife. I want an intimate relationship. I want fun and flirting and love. So either you want these things too with me and we go try counselling or maybe it is time to walk away.
What do you feel? If you are honest with yourself Sye. Do you and your wife have a chance or is it over?