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Don’t know what to do

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This topic contains 3 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  anita 1 month ago.

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  • #321427

    WP10
    Participant

    Hi, I have been with my wife for the last 21 years & married for the last 9. We have 2 children & up until around 6 months ago everything was fine. Things then changed between us & she became distant & would hardly talk to me. She has now revealed that she hasn’t been happy for sometime & that she still loves me but just as a friend and is not in love with me anymore. She says I have done nothing wrong & it’s just the way she feels and doesn’t know how she feels this way but does & wants to split up and doesn’t want to fight for our marriage. I am absolutely devastated and don’t know what do. I love her so much but just want her to be happy. I don’t know if it has anything to do with it but I suspect she may have started going through the menopause. Can anyone help me? I don’t know what to do. I don’t want to lose her

    #321507

    anita
    Participant

    Dear WP10:

    She told you “that she still loves me but just as a friend and is not in love with me anymore. She says I have done nothing wrong & it’s just the way she feels.. & wants to split up”- she prepared these words. They are almost standard break up words meant to be done with the relationship with minimal complications.

    She states she loves you as a friend so to ease the blow of communicating to you that she no longer loves you. Basically she is saying: I don’t want to hurt you or deal with you being hurt, but I don’t love you anymore and I don’t want to live with you.

    She told you that you have done nothing wrong, again, ease the blow and communicate to you that there is nothing you can do to change her mind, no wrong on your  part means nothing you can do (to right a wrong).

    She stated the reason for the break up to be how she feels about you. How can one argue with a feeling she doesn’t have about you? If she told you that she wants to split up because she feels depressed, you might have suggested that she attends therapy. But you can’t suggest that she goes to therapy for not loving you anymore as a romantic partner.

    You mentioned menopause- not all women experience that the same way, how does she experience it and for how long? Also, any other changes in her life (ex., kids moving out, a new job/ income changes, a new friend/ social life)?

    anita

    #321645

    WP10
    Participant

    Hi. Since she’s told me it’s probably the nicest & most she’s talked to me for sometime. I’ve felt for a while that her friends are more important to her & this probably confirms it. My daughter is 19, still living at home but has her own life, a job and often speaks about getting her own place so this could possibly be affecting her.

    #321687

    anita
    Participant

    Dear WP10:

    You’ve been in a relationship with your wife for 21 years, married for 9. You have two children together, one of which is 19, living at home but “has her own life, a job and often speaks about getting her own place”. You believe that up until about May this year “everything was fine”. From about May onward, your wife “became distant and would hardly talk to” you. You have been feeling for some time that “her friends are more important to her”.

    Recently your wife told you that “she hasn’t been happy for sometime”, that she loves you but is not in love with you, that you did nothing wrong,  that it is just the way she feels, she doesn’t know why, and she “wants to split up and doesn’t want to fight for” the marriage.

    After telling you these things, she’s been “the nicest & most she talked to me for sometime”. You feel “absolutely devastated and don’t know what to do… I don’t want to lose her”.

    My input this morning: I have very little information so I will come up with a possibility of what happened and you are welcome to tell me whether any part of it is true:

    Your wife has been passive, that is, not assertive throughout your relationship, not asking for what she needs and wants. She is used to being this way. For a long while she didn’t want to be in the relationship with you because .. well, she hasn’t been getting a lot of what she needs and wants for too long. She kept her feelings in, talking to her friends about it, but not to you. After some time, seeing that her children are quite independent, or about to be independent and no longer need their mother and father living together, she finally told you. Once she told you, she felt better, relieved- she no longer has to hold her feelings in. She finally asked for what she needed- out of the marriage.

    If this possibility is correct, then the marriage could have been saved if she told you about her distress long ago, because she would have felt the same relief once opening up to you, a relief that would have allowed her to talk to you more about what she needs to be different, maybe you’d offer to make changes and maybe she would have been open to marriage counseling.

    Fast forward, she held it in for so long, likely talked about it to her friends for a long time and she has their support for separating from you, and so she proceeds with the plan.

    – in this case there is nothing you can do except to let her know that if she changes her mind you will be willing to listen to what she needs from you, you are willing to make changes for her and go to marriage counseling and such. What you definitely shouldn’t do is pressure her in any way to remain with you. Any such pressure will backfire.

    Give her the freedom she needs to proceed, this is your only chance that maybe, just maybe she will change her mind.

    anita

    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by  anita.
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