Today my wife completely lost it on me, like she’s done many times before, over what I thought was a small mistake on my part. I did not finish clearing her phone of all the pictures so that she could have more space. As she was looking for a recipe so I could go to the grocery store to purchase the food them come home to make the meal, she made it about my inability to finish this task. It seems that each year, at least once or twice, she brings up how unhappy she is with our lack of a relationship. She refers to us as two people with kids living together. I feel like I try to add romance at times with small gestures, but she won’t forgive me for my putting a career ahead of her when we were first married. I wholly admit that I was wrong to do so for such a long time. I was focused on my job and abandoned her. It was all my fault, but she resents anything that I do now and makes me feel horrible, while exploding on me, anytime I make any error or lapse in judgement. I admit my faults but have changed significantly, yet she doesn’t seem able to let go of my past self to move on. Today, as we talk about it, she continues to say that there is nothing there and wasn’t from the very beginning of our marriage. I admit that it all started very rocky. I have made several mistakes, but I continue to apologize for my past while living in the present. I used to bring roses home every other Monday during her favorite show, The Bachelor/Bachelorette, but felt as though it was not appreciated. Other gestures I’ve made seemed to go by the wayside as well since she seems to hold on to my past self, yet she acknowledges the changes I’ve made, just not with out relationships. I put family and the kids first, but she feels I don’t do anything for our relationship. I don’t know what to do because she told me that if she had to answer whether or not she wanted to stay married to me today, she’d have to say no. How can I save us? Please help.
Marriage counseling. It’ll help you both.
Also, try looking at the Love Languages website to see how your wife feels love best. It may be through acts of service or quality time more than gifts.
I’m sorry you’re going through this. I hope you and your wife can reconcile.
If you are both Catholic, maybe a family trip to confession? (Obviously one at a time)
It’s hard to hold a grudge against a spouse when all your sins were just forgiven. Maybe it would calm her enough to have some productive talks.
Marriage counselling is a good idea if your wife will consent to attend.
The only other contribution I can make is this. I have experienced something of what you describe. I had someone in my life who constantly pointed out my flaws and it was a miserable situation. Then I became a Catholic and formed a relationship with God and suddenly it dawned on me that my greatest critic who was dedicated to her habit of criticising was actually a wonderful gift from God. Because she showed me the futility of placing my happiness in the hands of a human being. It drove me to God and since becoming Catholic I know that I’m never truly alone. And the upshot of this is that we have b gun to get on better, there seems to be a genuine happiness in the house since I’ve placed my energies on pleasing God and developing love and charity for my fellow human beings …especially those close to me.
It may also be efficacious to ask that an angel encamps with you and helps bring tolerance, peace and tranquility into your home and a cordial at least relationship with your wife. This may help your relationship to heal in time, after all you were once in love right?
In my opinion, the reality shows about bachelors or housewives of whatever are not helpful to healthy marriages. They might be adding to her feelings of discontent in her marriage. Also, I’ve noticed that if a person follows social media and watches those types of shows, they seem to be given a perspective and even a type of script about how, for example, unhappy spouses are in marriages where they are “like roommates” focusing only on work and the kids. It might be true that your focus has been on those things out of necessity. But if you’ve tried to meet her expectations and she’s still unhappy … it’s a bigger problem of discontent that is within her and has less to do with what you are or are not doing.
The only answer is your practice of your Faith. You can’t make her go to counseling, you can try it, but I’m guessing she won’t be very interested. Plus, the type of therapist you engage matters a great deal. It can make or break your marriage if you someone who thinks that divorce is o.k. if the two people just don’t get along like they would like.
I would suggest that you increase your prayer life and increase your reception of the Sacraments: daily Mass, go to Confession more often, add more prayers to your daily practice.
My marriage was improved not by talking about it, but by my turning my focus away from my H and how he wasn’t meeting my needs, to focusing on Jesus and turning over all my worries and needs over to Him.
None of us can make your wife treat you well. I wouldn’t overapologize, and if your wife says something out of line you should tell her she’s wrong; you’re not her punching bag. My best wishes for family healing.
I feel as if she’s bothered/frustrated with something else that she isn’t vocalizing. That’s why she may not be responsive to your efforts, because they aren’t addressing her issue in the first place.
How old are your kids? Is she busy running after them and the house? How often do you help out? Is she still physically attracted to you?
Counseling is probably the way to go. Both of you really need to have an honest and deep conversation eventually.
I feel for you, I had seen trouble in marriage too, was on a brink of divorce, I read about the Consecration of Marriages to the United Hearts of Jesus and Mary, say it every day, try to get your wife to say it too and you will see the growth of love between the two of you. I certainly experience this in my marriage. Counselling may be helpful but prayer is always our first line of defense as these things are first and foremost a spiritual battle. Pray it even if your wife refuses, I have been praying this alone and it worked. In the end of the day you are one flesh, one body, so you can say “we” for both of you. But pray it daily without fail.
This is the prayer: “Holy and Sacred United Hearts of Jesus and Mary, we consecrate our marriage to You today in this present moment. Through this consecration, we will dedicate our hearts to Your victory. United in You we seek Your protection and provision. Increase our love for You and for each other with every breath we take. Regally clothe our hearts in the Divine Will of the Eternal Father. Help us to increase in holiness in and through Your United Hearts. Amen.”
This prayer carries with it many promised graces: “It will strengthen the soul of marriages gone stale. It will increase fervor in hearts. It will convert the unconverted who consents to pray it.”
I pray for you and your wife.
There’s also Retrouvaille retreats. I think the Love Languages books might be the ticket here. It sounds like you are trying to reach out to her emotionally, but she doesn’t see your efforts and possibly you might not know the best way to reach out to her. It may be a difference in Love Languages.
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