How to Be Happy Without Your Husband

Here are five steps to finding peace and joy after a divorce. You CAN learn how to be happy without your husband – without his money, love, financial support, frustrating habits, and self-destructive behaviors.

If’you’re still trapped in your relationship, read The Emotionally Destructive Marriage: How to Find Your Voice and Reclaim Your Hope by Leslie Vernick. It’ll help you gain the skills to respond to an unhealthy partner, learn how to stay safe, and recognize when and how to leave.

Here’s what a reader says: “I’ve been married to same man for 30 years, and he has manipulated and controlled me to the point that I have no self-esteem or confidence,” writes Mary on How to Leave Your Husband. “I have isolated myself from family and friends for 20 years. I have no job and no money, and I feel he set me up like this. He recently blamed me for our financial ruin. I’m 57 with no money, no job, no family, friends or confidence. I’m miserable and exhausted from this….the contempt just grows and grows. So does the rage and the hate.”

Mary reminds me of the wife in a book called The Gatecrasher. Phillipa was in exactly the same type of marriage. Phillipa’s husband spoke down to her, destroyed her self-esteem and confidence, treated her like garbage, and blamed her for everything bad in their lives. Phillipa discovered that she can be happy without her husband’s “love” or money – and it was as simple as “if your marriage makes you unhappy, then leave it.” (Well it wasn’t THAT simple, but that was one of the themes of the book).

You need to find the strength and courage to stand on your own two feet, gain financial independence, and realize that you CAN live without him.

5 Steps to Being Happy Without Your Husband

This is just a start – a general list of ideas that can put you on the road to finding freedom and breaking free from an unhappy marriage. You’ll need more specific help and support if you’re serious about being happy without your husband. You need to contact a lawyer, or a divorce counselor, or a social worker.

But first, you need to…

Tell your family and friends the truth. The unhealthiest, most destructive husbands are the guys that isolate you from your friends and family. The more isolated you are, the more power he has over you – until you have nobody to turn to. That is, you THINK you have nobody to turn to – but you do! You don’t need your husband’s twisted love or money, you can be happy without a husband, and you CAN stand on your own two feet.

“I finally told my sister some of the things that are going on in my marriage,” says Elizabethon When You Can’t Tell Your Family How Your Husband Treats You. “My husband thinks I’m the bad guy now. He took life insurance out on me and dropped my medical coverage. I told him, if you can’t help take care of me while I am living, you are not going to benefit on my insurance when I’m gone. We have decided to go our separate ways. I should not have hid how my husband treated me from my family and friends all these years.”

Focus on what you DO have. Mary said she has no money, no job, and no support. That may be true – but what does she have? A brain. A mouth. Two feet. She has what she needs to get money, to get a job, to get support, and to start being happy without her husband. To start over without your husband – and be happy – all you need is what you already have: your body, your brain, and your spirit. Yes, it’s hard to start over. Yes, it’s scary and what will people think? Yes, finding a job in this economy will be a pain in the a$$. Yes, life isn’t fair…and yes you wish things were different!

But this is your life, and you have the power to change it. You have the power to be happy without your husband’s money or “love.”

Work towards financial independence. In How to Get Money to Leave Your Husband, I list a few tips for accumulating money and learning how to be independent. I’m not saying it’s easy – but I am saying it’s worth the pain and effort. It takes time and effort to rebuild yourself financially, but it’s better than being unhappy with a husband who treats you like garbage.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help. That’s what social services is for, what friends and family are for, and what neighbors are for! Eat that humble pie, for it will make you stronger and self-sufficient. Then one day, you will be able to help another woman who is scared she’ll never be happy without HER husband’s money or love. What goes around comes around, my friend.

how to be happy without husband

“How to Be Happy Without Your Husband” image by Laurie

Remind yourself that you deserve better than what your husband gives you. “You sound like you would like to leave but you’re torn by your responsibilities to yourself, your children and even your feelings for your deadbeat husband. Take it from me (45 years married), he won’t change. If you are ready to be on your own again, you need to call a hotline for abused women. They can help you leave and be happy without your husband’s money or love without endangering yourself or your children.

You deserve better than what he is able/willing to give you. Your children will be damaged by watching how he treats you. Not to mention what it will do to your self-esteem as time goes on.” ~ Sally, Why Do Women Stay in Loveless Marriages? 5 Reasons.

What do you think – can you be happy without your husband?  If you need help, please find a counselor in person – you need to get support if you want to rebuild your life and be happy without your husband! I welcome your stories and thoughts below, but I can’t offer marriage or divorce counseling.

If you’re lonely, read How Long Should You Wait Before Starting a New Relationship?

Fix Your Marriage

May you find strength, peace, and joy as you learn how to be happy without your husband. May you find yourself.

Article Name
How to Be Happy Without Your Husband
Here are five steps to finding peace and joy after a divorce, and learning how to be happy without your husband.

Before You Go...

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Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen
I'm a full-time freelance writer and blogger in Vancouver, BC. I created the "Quips and Tips" blog series; my degrees are in Education, Psychology, and Social Work. I welcome your comments below, but I don't give advice. I can offer you a prayer and a blessing, though! You'd be surprised how helpful a prayer can be....

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6 Responses

  1. Laurie says:

    I can’t give advice, but I can offer you a blessing. My prayer for all women who are learning how to be happy without their husbands – or trying to figure out if it’s time to end a marriage – is for peace and strength. May you gain wisdom and clarity as you move forward in your life. May you connect with the right people and resources, and may you be blessed with a strong sense of God’s peace and joy.

  2. Lisa A. says:

    My ex husband left me, our 3 weeks old baby and our 3 year old son over 6 years ago. I moved on, although it wasn’t easy. We had occasional arguments, mostly regarding him seeing the kids. Eventually I allowed for their sake. I am doing pretty go for myself. As of now I am still single. My choice. Recently he has tried to reenter into my life (meaning he now wants us to do things with the kids together, which before he didn’t). He has moved his girlfriend into his home, which only about 8 months ago had had another female living with him. This concerned me that my kids are going through this move-one woman in move another out process. I told him my concerns and denied me meeting this new girlfriend who is spending time with my kids. Its like he is trying to through her in my face. I find it appalling. I don’t have any feelings for him, which I related to him, But he always says that I am just jealous. Believe me I am not, What should I do? Or is there anything I can do regarding my children being caught in the middle of whatever this journey my ex husband is going through?

  3. Laurie says:

    Dear Margaret,

    I’m sorry you’re not with your husband, and you can’t find ways to be happy without him. Sometimes the best way to be happy is to accept our current situation for what it is, and not fight it. For some reason, it may be better for you and your husband to be apart for a time.

    It sounds like you’re grieving the end of your marriage and the loss of your husband in your life. This is very difficult, and I hope you find friends, family, and faith to see you through.

  4. margaret mew says:

    Me and my husband are having problems we not together for a month I miss him so much, I don’t know what to do.

  5. Laurie says:

    Hello Susan,

    It sounds like you’re coping with alot right now – not just the end of your marriage, but also raising our grandchildren. I can tell that you’re a strong, kind woman! You’re doing your best to hold it all together, but your husband’s leaving has really hurt you.

    As far as coping with it – is there a way to get Social Assistance to help raise your grandchildren and pay the bills? Some governments offer services for grandparents who are taking care of their grandkids.

    I think you should let your husband go. I know it’s scary to think of starting over, but he has made his decision to leave. If you’re desperate to get him back, you’ll only push him farther away. If you find a source of strength and hope and courage within you (or even better, in God), you’ll not only be happier, you may even attract him back.

    What supports and resources do you have in your life, to help you through this?

  6. Susan Horn says:

    My husband and I have been together for 16 years and everything started getting real bad for the last year or so.I’m older than him 57 and he is 38,it was love at first sight for both of us and then I got custody of my 2 grandchildren,the first one he just took over and raised like his own,he never wanted kids,13 years later i got a 1 year old she’s 3 now,and things started getting bad,he started getting mean to me and staying gone a lot,and now he has left me.I have no education and now cleaning houses to try and make it.I cry all the time and have lost so much weight because I can’t eat or sleep,i’m now living in a daze.He comes and get’s the older child and coaches her softball team,he won’t speak to me at the games but when he drops her off he talks a little.He wants away from me so bad he has said that he will pay off the house and help me till I get on my feet,that seems like a slap in the face but I have to accept it.He say’s there is no one else but I can’t except that as being true,I’m so hurt and confusedI know things weren’t perfect but just 3 months ago he was telling me he loved me,this happened so fast.I’m scared now and feel like I’m to old to start over.I ask him if we could fix this and try again and he said no.How do I cope with this and what can I do?I’m so insecure about myself.I can’t stop crying and I don’t know if I can make it financially,I have to take care of these kid’s for life.

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