Nov 262013
 

Are you going through the normal stages of a long-term marriage, or is your relationship finished? These signs a marriage is over will help you see your relationship more clearly.

signs your marriage is overWhat are the natural phases of a long-term, committed love relationship? Read Love Cycles: The Five Essential Stages of Lasting Love by Linda Carroll. You’ll recognize where you are in the cycle of your marriage, and start understanding different strategies for staying happy and committed, even in difficult times.

“In my work doing marriage coaching, I have noticed that very often the turning point in a marriage is when a couple hits rock bottom,” says Mort Fertel. “It’s not until they’ve been through the worst that things start to get better.”

Feeling like you’ve hit rock bottom in your marriage isn’t necessarily the worst thing to happen in your relationship. Sometimes rock bottom is where you need to be, so you can rebuild your marriage. Rock bottom might help you see your relationship clearly – such as identifying when guilt is keeping you in a marriage you wish was over.





7 Signs Your Marriage is Over

Remember marriage coach Mort Fertel’s words: just because you’re struggling with problems in your relationship, doesn’t mean your marriage is headed for divorce court! The following issues may represent the end of one stage of your marriage….and may herald the beginning of a new, healthier chapter of life. In fact, Mort says cheating husbands are more likely to build stronger marriages.

If financial debt or other money problems are destroying your marriage, read How to Stop Money From Causing Relationship Issues.

Your partner can’t see the reality of your marriage

If your spouse doesn’t understand how his actions are affecting you – and even worse, refuses to compromise – then your marriage will be difficult to rebuild. To rise from rock bottom, both partners have to see how their actions or inactions are affecting the relationship – and both partners have to be willing to work on it. If your spouse refuses to accept responsibility, then you have to decide if you want to stay in your marriage the way it is…or end it.

Your spouse sees how thing are, but doesn’t care

You can communicate until you’re blue in the face, but if your partner doesn’t care how you feel or whether the relationship is healthy, then perhaps it’s a sign your marriage is over. Marriage coach Mort Fertel says, “Ironically, communication techniques sometimes give people clarity that they don’t care what their spouse thinks or feels. They “got it,” but “it” doesn’t matter to them anymore.” Communication is secondary to caring.

You don’t connect with your spouse

When you first got married, you probably felt understood, heard, and connected with your partner. Time passes, and the stress of daily life and kids and jobs and money and house all take a toll…and you find that you’re not connecting anymore. This isn’t necessarily a sign your marriage is over – it just means you need to make the time and effort to reconnect.



Relationship Help

Do you regret the break up? Get Your Ex Back

Want to stop the separation or divorce? Save Your Marriage

Wondering how to make a man fall in love with you? Captivate Him So He'll Never Want to Leave



You have different visions of the future of your marriage

He wants a four million dollar home on oceanfront property; you want to live in a cottage in the country. He wants six children; you’d rather be childfree. He wants his mom and aunt to live with you in his four million dollar home; you can barely tolerate Christmas dinner together. To keep your marriage together, you need to agree on your vision as a couple or family – and put each other first (and your financial goals, parents, or careers second).

Sometimes you don’t need to read signs your marriage is over, because you know divorce is the best option. If you aren’t financially independent or free to walk away, read How to Get Money to Leave Your Husband.

You’re not physically intimate (but this isn’t always a sign your marriage is over)

Signs Marriage is Over

7 Signs Your Marriage is Over

This may not be a sure way to tell if your marriage is over — it depends on your physical and mental health — but if you have no love life to speak of, then you probably aren’t connecting on an intimate emotional and physical level. The less you connect, the less healthy your relationship is…and the more likely your spouse is ending the relationship.

You fight the “wrong” way in your marriage

If you can’t focus on the topic of your argument, opting instead to bring up past mistakes or reopen old wounds, then your marriage may be leaning towards “over.” The more past conflicts come into current arguments, the less healthy your marriage is. This may not be a certain sign your marriage is over, because it’s actually fairly easily remedied if both spouses are willing.

You partner cheats and wants to end the marriage

Many couples survive marital infidelity, and even have a stronger bond because of the cheating. Other couples split up right away, while other marriage limp along for years or decades…and the cheating partner remains unfaithful. Cheating in and of itself isn’t necessarily a way to tell if your marriage is over…it’s how the partners act after the infidelity that determines if they’ll stay together.

I welcome your thoughts on these signs your marriage is over. I can’t give you advice – but below I offer a direct link to marriage coach Mort Fertel. He gives relationship advice, and shares his perspective on the signs of a marriage ending.



Fix Your Marriage


If you and your husband are willing to work on your marriage, read How to Go on a Marriage Retreat Without Leaving Home.

 

Summary
Article Name
7 Signs Your Marriage is Over
Author
Description
These signs your marriage is over will help you figure out if you're going through the normal stages of a long-term relationship, or if it's time to call it quits.
I invite you to share your thoughts below! I read every comment, but can't offer advice or even guarantee a personal response. Don't let this stop you from sharing -- writing often brings clarity and insight, and will show other readers they're not alone.

"I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in Him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit." - Romans 15:13

  41 Responses to “7 Signs Your Marriage is Over”

  1. husband and i have separated just 3 months after passing of my mother.. he was not there for me through this all because he was busy working. never had time off except for the burial which was his day off anyway. he has now been gone for a month and he still visits me. we still intimate but the distance is getting bigger. not much emotional talk and whenever I ask him when hes coming back he said not to pressure him and he wants me to rebuild my life while hes rebuilding his? when he left i got him tresspassed as he was physically abusive to me before but i never called police on him ever. when he left he never gave me his new address but i found out two weeks later from clues he had given me. i surprised him one day just showed up and he was not very happy but shocked and surprised. he said he likes his privacy and own peace of mind. i told him that in a marriage all should be transparenr. he reassures me that he is not finding or seeing any1 else but i do not know as he still does not know when he is returning home. he said he does not know what he wants yey but likes his own space and works and goes home and relax without me bitching.. i have expressed myself clearly time and time again, he wants me to change but he is not changing his flaws its all my fault apparently. i do not know what to do any suggestions please?

  2. I have been married for thirteen years and together we have two amazing boys. it definitely has not been smooth sailing the whole way but we always seemed to work thru things and I never realy had the slightest worry about us not always being us. at one point I left my husband and was involved with someone else and I was brutally cruel to my husband because he wouldn’t stop trying to fight for us but I just wanted him to stop because in my opinion after theres that betrayal if you will call it that even though I was leaving him due to his mental torment with his words I still couldn’t fully let go of the man I deeply loved we worked thru it and he swore hed do whatever it took so we cud stay together and aside from the comments frequently to remind me I m a failure up we were so good he worked on the things I needed from him and I actually knew hed be there for forever without a doubt its been three years since and we have been good til six months ago when he started treating me like the past.

  3. Me and my wife have been maried for two years. We have known each other going on 5 years. We had been fighting a lot over stupid little things and in august she moved 3000 miles away to be with her parents. She told me she still wanted to work things out but we had to make some changes. I had tried to stay in contact with her get her to read mariage help books and articles. She told me she wanted some time to just think and wanted her space so I gave it to her but still would say something to her at least once a week then we decided we where really going to work on things and talk every day but often she was to busy or fell asleep and we still Harley talked. She then started to tell me we just needed to get a divorce and it was to late to fix are relationship. I told her we were married and that was a serious commitment I was not ready to give up on and it’s never to late to lay everything out on the table and fix a marriage.she told me that she would think about it and call me back later. She called me 3 hours later said she wanted to work on things but needed to be honest with she had been sleeping with another guy for a month and a half we were seperated but we said we were going to work things out so it still felt like she cheated. She said it was just sex she was just trying to fill the void of me not being there and it was wrong and she wanted to save our marriage. We had been talking or texting every day and it felt like we were making serious progress. Then one day she was supper distant and I was insecure felt like she might be cheating again so flew to see her right away she was still staying with her parents and welcomed me with open arms it was like when we were married again without all the fighting. I spent a week there and it was great. She did have a prior commitment that I didn’t want to make her give up on so we agreed she would come back in a month I went home and bought her plane ticket back then 3 days later today she told me she loves me and wants to work things out but she is not ready and doesn’t think it’s the right time and wants to come up for a week in February but to not move back tell June so we can really work on ourselves and our marriage. This obviously hurt me cause I feel like if she loved me she would just come back. I love her and do want to work things out she tells me that there is no one else and we are going to work on things and she just wants to become a better person and know we aren’t going to fight all the time over little things. I love her and even though it would be difficult for us to stay apart for so much longer I want to work on things I just am afraid that she will go and hook up with someone else again. I am conflicted and hope someone here could give me some advice thanks.

  4. Well I have just celebrated my 15th wedding anniversary and for a while now everything with my husband is an arguement and the worst part are the arguements about my parenting decisions and how these arguments always take place in front of the children. We have never seen eye to eye about parenting our whole relationship but he has never really wanted to make decision on what the kids cold do where they went or anything but 2 1/2 years ago he started his own business and has been home more with them and now everything becomes an issue. His parenting style is to ask them where they are going and if they need a ride then hamd them money and tell them to have fun. When I am not like that I have 2 daughters 14 & 15 and then I have a 10 year old son and with my kids I have always been strict. Well he is strict at all and I would like my daughters to grow up and do what make something of their lives and be independent women well recently we have been having a lot of pour decision making going on wit our daughters so I have gotten a little more strict with them and they have been testing me a lot well I had been have a stressful day and had asked my daughter to clean the kitchen and she told me NO so I grounded her and told her friend to go home and he came in yelling at me and telling me to go clean the kitchen and to leave them alone and that had really made me mad and so I left but I am not sure if this is going to work since we will never see eye to eye on parenting. What should I do, is my marriage over?

  5. My wife and I dated 4 years and were married 10 years when I found out she was cheating on me the entire time with her ex boss. She slept with him once when she was 18 before we ever met. Then continued sleeping with him on and off throughout our dating period including 9 weeks before marrying me. She then continued sleeping with him on and off again throughout the marriage before being caught by his wife. She slept with him one week after our ten year anniversary which I took her to Mexico. She said they never used protection which put me at risk of std’s. I also had a vasectomy after our second daughter so she risked getting pregnant by the other man. After I found out she continued to lie about the details and how many times it really happened. Initially it was one time then twice then over a 9 week period of lies I finally got most of the details out; that it was throughout our entire marriage and dating period. She swears she loves me and always has; that she did it because of her self esteem issues and it made her feel good about herself. She swears she never had feeling for the other man, that it was just sex. I asked her how she could hide it for 14 years from everyone and she said she never felt any guilt, that it made her feel good about herself. It helped her come home happy to the man she really loved(according to her).
    It has been 2.5 years now and I find my self distancing myself from her. I can’t stand to look at her some days and don’t trust her. If she could hide this for 14 years with no guilt, how can I ever trust her again? I don’t believe she ever really loved me, but loved this other man and settled for me because he was married.
    Honestly, I would probably leave her but I have two daughters, 4 & 7 that I love more then my own life. I am terrified of hurting them and messing them up for life. I would do anything for them, including sacrificing my happiness. The problem is the stress from being around her is starting to take a toll on me mentally now. She always wants to kiss me when I come home from work and try to act like nothing has happened. She now makes the comment that I need to get past it and get back to loving her. It has become unbearable to live around her and with her.
    I really need some advice and help. I don’t want to hurt my girls but don’t know that I can last with my wife. My stress and anxiety is terrible. Do I stay for my girls or will they be okay? How negative does divorce effect kids at that age? I can suck it up and last until they are older if it is easier at a later age. I just need some advice.
    Thanks,

    • The question you need to ask is are the benefits of staying with her more than the negatives. My husband cheated – twice – from 7 years to 12 years of marriage. But he is a great father, a great lover and a great provider. I did not leave him and I have 2 well adjusted teen girls who have self-confidence and trust that I am not sure they would have if my husband and I divorced when they were pre-teens. I hated my husband for quite some time, but we have been married for 20 years and I am happy with my decision to stay with him. Even if he cheated again (or I found out he cheated again) I would still be happy I stayed because we have a loving relationship and wonderful daughters. Some of my friends say I am crazy to stay with him, but they have husbands who work all the time or go out with the guys every week or play golf constantly.

    • You sound like a wonderful husband and a great dad.
      Sounds like a very hard thing to go through.
      You need to take good care of yourself. Maybe consult with a therapist.
      You must be angry and sad and scared.
      You need time to figure it out. The right answer will come at the right time.

  6. Please give me advice… I am in my thirties have 3 children and was married for 12 years to an abusive man.. I divorced him 4 yrs ago.. I met this wonderful man that has one child and now we have been married for 9 months… I constantly feel alone.. I always ask him if he loves me and I am always wanting him sexually and just want him to touch hold me kiss me… I in the beginning was very affectionate so I guess I ddint know he wasn’t .. If this makes sense.. I tell him and tell him what I need and he will do it for the time being and then it goes back to the way it was.. So then I just am quiet and don’t say anything then he will keep bugging me about what’s wrong and I tell him and he Responds like I’m silly or none of its true and that he loves me and says when will u just believe me.. He goes his daughter so much attention and I’m just here like do u even see me? Please help

  7. Good morning,

    This is my first time trying to get advise outside my home. Heres my story….

    My husband and I have been married 3 yrs now. Since i met him he has cheated on me. I thought maybe after marriage he would change but I was wrong. Till this day I know he has some one else i have proof he does. But doesn’t admit to it. He says well your going to divorce me any way. Or he says well i need a plan B. But this man has like plan b plan c plan d and so on. When he is with me. He is a whole different person. He babies me loves me buys me everything. He is like the perfect husband. But i just can’t stop him from cheating. Im hopeless i don’t know if i should divorce him or not.

    • Sounds like he is a fairytale kind of guy….but when he cheats on you…it lowers your self esteem so much…and probably must be very painful.
      At one point it maybe too much to tolerate. But you will figure it out. You need to strengthen yourself from the inside.

  8. Hi and thank you for this article. I have 2 friend that I have spoken with bit I would like your opinion also.
    This past weekend I saw my husband on some type of messaging that I knew wasn’t his text message. I let the worst get ahold of me and I found an app with a password on it. The app is for hiding messages, emails, pictures,and videos. I asked him and he said that it is nothin ad that he doesn’t know what I talking about. He went to work and wouldn’t talk to me and when he did he said he don’t care what I have to say or think. He changed passwords to everything so now I can’t see anything. He didn’t come home that night he stayed at a coworkers and they got drunk. He didn’t go to work the next day due to a hang over. We talked something on that day and he said he was coming home. He did come home around 6pm. He said there is nothing for us to talk about or for us to work anything out. He says he don’t care and tht he isn’t leavings because we have a 21 month old together and I am 3 months pregnant now. He would hug me and he did kiss me. He did say he loved me and he did say that he cared about the way that I felt. He didn’t want me to bother him and he says he will never be able to trust me again because I went thru his phone. He did let me lay with him for a little while and he kisses back when I kiss him. I touched his man hood and asked if I could play with him, he said no that he just wanted to be left alone. I went to bed around 10 and he came to bed around 10:30-11 after telling me he was going to sleep on the couch. Whenever I did something he would just say I want to be left alone and then I would tell him ” I am trying to be normal as much as possible for us and that you are going to have to trust that I will change and trust you.”
    That next morning for work he hugged and kissed and said I love you before leaving.

    I guess my questions to you are….
    Am I being to pushy?
    Should I wait for sex to happen on its own?
    Is there hope for us still?

    Oh and by the way we have been together for 4 yrs.

  9. About a year ago I had several inappropriate conversations with other women , my wife iof 23 years found out and was devastated and hurt . I since fixed my issue and have never done that again, I never had phisical contact with those woman but it hurt her just the same . I’ve tried for a year to rebuild our marriage . She can’t get over it and know we are at a place where divorce is becoming an option . I love her dearly and suggested we get some marriage counseling before we call it quits . She said no . I need help what do I do ?

  10. These signs your marriage is over are helpful but not necessarily applicable to every relationship. My wife and I are going through a very difficult time because we recently had triplets. We seem to be dealing with every one of these signs a marriage is over but I know it’s just a tough stage right now. It will get better, our marriage will get back to being good again. In 18 years.

    • 18 years is a really long time to bank on.The strain of kids is not always the reason,sometimes its just an excuse for why things are the way they are.And you are worried,or you would not have ended up on this thread otherwise.

  11. Dear Derek,

    Thank you for being here, and sharing your concerns about your marriage. It sounds like your friends care very much about you – and your wife – and want you to be happy and healthy.

    Have you considered talking to a counselor about your reluctance to confront your wife, and share how unhappy you are? There are all sorts of important things going on in your marriage and life right now; I’m afraid I can’t give you the support you need. It sounds like you’re hesitant to communicate directly with your wife, and you feel helpless and unhappy.

    I encourage you to talk to a counselor, and sort out why you feel unable to make changes in your life. You need to get emotionally healthy before you can have a good, honest conversation with your wife. I believe there are compromised that you and she can make, to make your marriage happy again. The signs in this article that a marriage is over don’t necessarily mean your own marriage is on the rocks….but it sounds like you and your wife have some work to do, before you can reunite. All marriages take work, and relationships that involve the in-laws are a bit more complicated!

    Blessings,
    Laurie

    • Thank you for your reply Laurie.To answer your question I have been to counseling for quite some time. My wife indicated some time ago that she did not believe in it, so I took it upon myself to go. My counselor has tried to help me see things from my wife’s side as well, and she has pointed out that both my wife and I are both unwilling to address things – both as I explained, and my wife has indicated that she is unwilling to discuss how to deal with her parents (she routinely shuts down a conversation if I hint at trying to discuss these things). This is partly why I find myself in this situation. Recently there has been another blow-up and while the waters are calm now, I wonder when the next one is coming because I am sure there will be one.

  12. Thank you for this article Laurie. Sadly, I see 1 or 2 of the elements mentioned in my own marriage. I am not sure, however, if my wife sees it that way.

    I am in a very difficult situation that I have had trouble finding advice about. I have been married for 6 years, with an 11-year old girl (she is my wife’s from a previous marriage). I have been this child’s ‘Dad’ since she was 3 (her biological father lives in the U.S. and has zero contact with her). The problem is not this; it’s my 2 elderly in-laws.

    At my wife’s insistence, we moved into her mother’s home (she is 90 now). Her father & mother are long divorced; he is 92 & still insists on living in his own home. The problem is that we have NO life of our own now; both these elderly parents believe we should spend ALL our time helping them. My wife, sadly, enables this thinking & frequently ‘teams up’ with her mother to dictate what we are doing on my weekends off. I am not asked what I am doing (or want to do) on weekends off; it is DICTATED to me by my wife & her mother. On my weekends off my wife insists on spending up to 4 hours a day at her father’s. These are NOT social visits; they are entirely about work, and lots of it. This includes, but is not limited to: shoveling snow from his walks, picking up fruit from his trees in the back yard, mowing the lawn & other yard work, getting groceries, bathing him, laundry, etc, etc. I am expected to help with this selfish elderly man (who routinely makes his own demands & shows very little appreciation), and my wife & her mother bitterly resent it if I even hint at refusing to help. I have been physically injured looking after this man & unable to work for 2 months, but my wife & her mother continued to insist that I provide personal care to him (I no longer do). Although home care comes to see him now they are largely ineffective. My wife has 2 brothers who should be helping, but 1 is too far away to help and the second refuses to. My mother-in-law routinely makes excuses for him as he is the ‘most favored child’ in that family. This woman is no better than her ex; she makes frequent demands for very heavy labor in her garden (she believes we should not go on summer holidays & should be content with helping her in her garden all summer). She also demands that I lift heavy tools/equipment (including a cast-iron toilet & sink) from her cottage that has been used as a dumping ground by ‘Papa’ (my father-in-law). Again, my wife’s brother should be helping with this but she will not ask him to. My wife meekly goes along with her mother; even though she acknowledges that my complaints against her mother are legitimate, she says ‘that’s just the way she is – and you just have to put up with it’. Her mother is a bully; she frequently calls our child rude names (‘brat’, ‘imbecile’); yet Grammy is frequently the one who acts like the real brat. She believes that elders cannot be reprimanded as they are entitled to be rude/nasty (to her, this is a right that comes with age). She also thinks that even adults do not have the right to say ‘NO’ to an elder, especially not to her. This woman thinks that ‘there is always something to do around the house’ and that doing things outside the home are wasteful (oddly enough, this mentality doesn’t apply when it comes to her son). This woman even told my 76-year-old father that she wished he & my mother lived closer (they live in another province), as she ‘could put him to work – there are a number of jobs the kids aren’t interested in’!

    My wife frequently says ‘I have so much to do’, and nearly all of it involves looking after her elderly parents. Aside from an annual vacation we do not have a life. We do not do family things together as my wife is always wanting to shop or look after her father (we spend up to 3 days a week doing various things for him). We have not had a date night in 4 years; my wife says ‘I can’t leave Grammy for that; that would be rude'; yet she doesn’t care how I feel about being ignored. Another common excuse is ‘I don’t have time for all that’, because it’s all spent looking after ‘Papa’. I thought if I helped with these two I might see something in return from my wife, such as time with her, but it has just led to more & more demands from these selfish elderly people, which my wife goes along with (she may be afraid of the consequences of refusing, or she believes this is some kind of ‘duty’).

    I suspect my wife may feel trapped by these people, but she has expressed no desire to buy a home with me and for us to have our own home. She would rather we live with her mother. At first I believed in my naivete it could work, but after 6 years I can no longer stand ‘Grammy’.

    My wife suspects something is wrong; I have done a very stupid thing & did not even kiss my wife for almost a month (she had said some very cruel things about my father visiting us). She now suspects a problem but will not try to address it. I am no better in that I have very stupidly allowed this problem to fester, largely because of my fear of saying ‘NO’ to her & her mother (things have gone very badly for me before when I stood up for myself). I have dreaded a confrontation with my wife & her family but I cannot continue like this. My own family & friends worry about my health – that I may have a heart attack, stroke, or develop some horrible disease like cancer because of all the stress this is putting me though. Your insight or anyone else’s is appreciated.

  13. Dear Jennifer,

    I can’t tell you if your marriage is over, nor can I give you advice. But, I do have a question for you: is this how you want to live your life for the next 50 or 60 years? I believe that’s the bottom line. Your husband probably won’t change…and he might even get worse as you both age. I don’t know, but it might be something to consider now, while you’re both on the young side of 100 years old! :-)

    My prayer for you is that you find strength, courage, and wisdom to see what the next step is. May you learn to live with unanswered questions and an uncertain future, trusting that this moment is all any of us have. May your self-confidence, self-identity,and energy increase — and may you accept that there will be good days and bad days, fearless days and scary days. I also pray for physical, emotional, and spiritual health. May you find a strong, healthy support network – and may you find and focus on the best in whatever decision you make about your marriage. Amen.

    Blessings,
    Laurie

  14. I have been wanting to leave my husband since 2005 (we got together in 2003, married in 2007). But a combination of fear for the unknown, financial insecurity (on my side), not wanting to hurt him, hope that it will get better, not wanting to be another divorce statistic, not wanting to disappoint/hurt my parents etc has stopped me from taking the step.

    There is a 20-year age difference between my husband and I and he has three grown-up children from a previous marriage (his wife is deceased – it also wasn’t a particularly happy union).

    I have always experienced a total lack of empathy from him and he seems unable to put himself in my shoes. Ever. He does not treat me like an equal. Never has. He fights me on everything and will never concede, even when he is totally in the wrong. He claims that whatever negative or bad behaviour he has ever displayed, is purely in reaction to what I have said or done. He takes ownership of nothing and shows zero insight in to his own behaviour. Often I say sorry (when I really wasn’t at fault) just to get us on an ‘even keel’ again. I abhor bad atmospheres and tension.

    When I met him he had been on Prozac for a number of years. Then some time later he came off it, then on again and when he retired (six years after I met him) he stopped taking the pills completely. He claimed that in fact he ‘was never depressed’. Since then everything in the relationship has gone pear-shaped.

    He is very intelligent, has had a high profile job until he retired in 2009 and on the surface he seems ‘normal’. However, he cannot connect properly and is often cold, aloof and distant. Also very negative. On a superficial level he gets on with other people but he is also the master of disguise, and a lot of people would never guess as to how he can be. He can be very humorous and quick witted and that was one of the reasons I fell in love with him. But the dark side is always there…

    To disagree with him on anything (even political stuff or current affairs) is dangerous as he gets very angry, very quickly. When I stay calm during a discussion (he prefers to refer to them as arguments – they are not), it seems to irritate him even more and he would dismiss me, refusing to continue the conversation. He never says he is wrong. Or sorry. He is happy to sulk for weeks at a time. He can also be very vindictive, immature and often show little emotional intelligence.

    A person with experience with Aspergers (I asked years ago for advise anonymously because I didn’t want to be disloyal or expose him) reckoned that he could be on the continuum. He certainly ticks a lot of the boxes. I’ve read so much about his behaviour and he also ticks a lot of boxes where Borderline Personality Disorder is discussed. I get very sad when I see how he fits so much of what is described and I just don’t know what to do because he will NEVER admit to having anything wrong with him, let alone seek help.

    I feel sorry for him because I think a lot of how he is he has little control over. I also believe his childhood (an over-bearing mother and a father that was totally emotionally absent) had influenced very much the man he is today. He is hypersensitive, very easily upset and does not like women to be assertive or to have opinions. He of course denies this.

    Our sex life (an important aspect of a relationship to me) has been non-existent for months now and even when we ‘got it together’ before, often I felt dissatisfied, mostly because our lovemaking was so infrequent and lacked intimacy. Affection only surfaces when sex is wanted. I don’t feel I am married to someone that I can also call my friend.

    I am embarrassed to admit it but I have come to realise that we actually have very little in common and even doing something together like going for a walk is a negative experience for my husband…the odd time when he does agree it is obvious that he would rather not be doing it. Now I don’t ask anymore and just do my own thing.

    I also feel less and less attracted towards him with every hurt, every fall-out and every sulk. I am not proud of it but I have been unfaithful. It took me a long time to reach that point.

    I just can’t see how things will change. I know it will impact on him if I leave and I don’t want to be the reason for his unhappiness. I don’t think he necessarily loves me (I don’t take it personally anymore) but from a ‘status’ perspective he would not like it to be known that his wife has left him. The financial implications of a separation/divorce however would be his biggest issue. He does not want to part with anything nor does he feel he should. He’d rather hang on to a mediocre marriage than finish it because of this. I would never ‘take him to the cleaners’ but I do feel he has a responsibility towards me. If I was financially independent I would not have taken a penny from him.

    Some days I feel so strong and I think I can handle it to leave, other days I feel terribly unsure, emotional and vulnerable.

    I am forty-five and fit, with good energy most days. I do however experience a pain in my chest and a burning sensation in my breasts at times and and I fear that the tension and stress will eventually affect my health.

    I have no kids but a number of good friends, here where I live (not my country of origin) and in other parts of the world. Also a wonderful god-child that I adore.

    Should I just recognise that the writing is on the wall, that what needs to be changed can’t be changed, be brave and go out on my own?

    Apologies for the lengthy writings. Any advice would be appreciated!

    • Wow, THIS sounds exactly like my husband. We were high school sweethearts and have been together for 12 years… I’m sorry, I have no idea how to help you, as I don’t even know how to help myself. Did you find anything else out about aspergers or borderline personality disorder?

      • Do you intend staying with your husband? Do you think he is capable of changing?

        There are definitely asperger traits that my husband exhibit, most strongly, his lack of empathy. He can feel sorry for others (mostly his children for various reasons) but he is not capable of putting himself in another person’s shoes. People with aspergers can lead happier lives and make adjustments if they are aware of the condition, however my husband would never ever admit to having anything ‘wrong’ with him.

        He ticks a lot of boxes regarding BPD. If you’re interested read this:

        http://gettinbetter.com/casanova.html

        My dilemma has always been – does he not want to change or can he not change. If one thinks it’s the latter (I swing between the two), then it makes leaving much more difficult because it almost feels like leaving someone with a disability.

        My marriage is a very lonely place. I would like a better and more fulfilling personal life with a person that I can truly connect with. I just don’t think it is possible with my husband and at this stage I’ve gone ‘beyond’ wanting to put more emotional energy in to trying to talk to him to see if my marriage can be saved.

        Our relationship is now platonic, I stay nice and do my own thing. But I know it can’t go on like this forever because he wants to have a physical relationship and will get aloof, distant and nasty again if this doesn’t happen.

        I look at him in such a different way now and the attraction for me is gone. I don’t know what needs to happen for that to change.

  15. I have reached the point in my marriage where I am ready to finalise a separation order, leading to a divorce (where I am from, you must have been separated for at least 2 years before you can divorce from your spouse).
    We have been married nearly 5 years, and there has been no progression on his end. I admit that in the beginning of our marriage, I had many issues of mistrust and always threatened to leave when I felt that things were not working out, but I made sure to change my behaviours when I realised I was affecting my husband’s ability to interact with me. We have attended counselling, and yet, over the past 3 years, I have been the only one facilitating any conversation etc.
    All I ask is that if he has nothing to say about a topic I bring up, to tell me so, rather than sit in silence. We have never argued in our marriage because this is his nature – to sit in silence when he doesn’t know what to say or feels conflict arising. He can’t even simply tell me that he needs time to think before he says something, or that he doesn’t have anything to say. I basically talk to a wall.

    I was diagnosed with depression this year, and our daughter diagnosed with autism. While he has attended whatever appointment I have asked him to, he sits in silence and doesn’t ask me anything, doesn’t contribute nor does he know anything about what my daughter and I are going through because he can’t be bothered reading. When I try to tell him about the things I am feeling, I am met with even more silence. I can’t keep this up – constantly reminding him that I would like him to say something, anything! I feel so alone, and so overwhelmed with dealing with my issues and my daughter’s issues and playing the perfect housewife. Why, he had the gall to hint this afternoon that he would love to have some pancakes with chopped fruit waiting for him tomorrow morning. He seems to find his voice when he wants something – food or sex.

    I feel so desperately down and alone, and no matter how many times I tell him this, I am left feeling even worse and he has little clue that I am struggling. I feel like he doesn’t want to know! When he apologises when I have gotten upset, he tells me he loves me and cares, but I don’t understand why he can’t show that through actions and words, rather than wait for the big apology. He has promised me countless times that he will try harder and change this, but nothing has changed at all, and I don’t want to be continuing this pattern for the rest of my life.
    We have been through the talks, where he admitted he doesn’t know what to say half the time, and that’s where I assured him that I just want to know that he hears what I’m saying and that he let me know exactly that, that he doesn’t know what to say. Nearly 5 years of this, and I am ready to finish the whole thing. A small part of me is wondering if I am doing the right thing, but the bigger part of me doesn’t ever want to feel how I’ve been feeling the past 5 years, ever again.

  16. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on these signs a marriage is over. Here’s an email I got today from The Brave Girls Club — they send a daily encouragement. Today’s was about acceptance and surrender…

    So much suffering comes when we resist the way things are. Such deep pain comes when we go to war with how things have turned out. Sometimes we think that accepting something we don’t want means that we are giving up….so we fight it….even if it can never be changed, we fight it.

    What if we cooperated with the way things are instead of fought the way things are? What if we took a good hard look and got really honest about every detail of how things are and then decided to hold hands with it and cooperate with it?

    Life is FULL of disappointments and blows to the stomach. After we have done all that we can…sometimes all that is left is to bravely accept what is true about right now. Until we accept the way things are, we are kind of trapped trying to change things that can never be changed…and this can keep us going round and round and round but really going nowhere.

    You are brave enough…you are strong enough…..

  17. I thought my marriage was over but we went to couples counseling. It helps to get a good marriage therapist and to be willing to work on your relationship problems. You both have to want to save your marriage.

  18. I am going though pain.i live my husband alot,but now things are not moving more.
    Our sex life is almost dead. Thiz is 5 th year to our marriage,but things getting really complicated. He thinks I dnt respect him, which is wrong. If I don’t respect him then I must have someone else outside.
    I don’t know what to do. These things carry on since 3 years.. i am tired now to explain him,how should our relationship suppose to be.
    In bed unless until he don’t won’t anything, we cnt hv sex. But if he want than only we can have.we both are working. And after office he daily go to gym 4-5 hours he spent there. i usually wait for him to go outside.to spend some good tym with him, but after gum he got busy to arrange things for next day. My marriage life iz almost end.

  19. I can’t tell you what to do with your marriage and life – and even if I could, I suspect you wouldn’t take my advice! You need to reach deep inside yourself and figure out what you want out of your life. Then, you need to start working towards creating it.

    The two things I know for sure are that you can’t change your spouse, and you need to accept reality. Knowing that you can’t change your spouse and that you need to accept your life for what it is without wishing things were different….how do you want to spend your days and evenings?

    Where do you want to live, who do you want to spend time with, what do you want to focus your energy on?

  20. Hi Laurie,

    I am end with my marriage, I don’t know what to do, I have been married for 16 years but they have been long painful year where there has been a lot of emotional abuse. Now it has gotten to a point that I cannot communicate with my husband face to face we communicate on phone messages. I have tried to keep this marriage going but it seems I have been doing the wrong things thinking that he is going to change, He drinks a lot and when he does something wrong to me he then starts accusing me of having relationships with other men. I have just finished my nursing degree and he is threatened that I am going to leave him and the accusation are getting more and more. Its getting so bad that when he cannot get to me he starts getting to the children. I have spend six years in a new country trying to settle down and go to school at the same time. We can be speaking for a few weeks then go back to not talking. I really don’t know what to do please advice as I feel that it is weighing up on me physically emotionally and also mentally.

  21. I have been married for 28 years we have 3 children but the entire marriage has been full of arguments, we have probably had sex no more than 25 times in those 28 years, my two oldest left home due to the arguments and I now aged 53 seem to have just woken up to the fact that my marriage died a long time ago. I openly spoke to my wife about my feelings but she seems to think I am having an affair which I am not. She accepted what I said but is destraught and trying hard to mend our relationship. It’s her 50 th birthday in 4 weeks and if it were not for that I would have gone but I don’t want to hurt her. In my mind it’s over but she will not accept it. I am stuck and don’t know what to do

  22. I’ve been married for a year and a half.. I got pregnant 3 months after we got married but we’re both 23 years old and money is low but my husband don’t talk to me he don’t touch me he is always rude to me and swears a lot I feel like I’ve given all I have and sometimes I look at him and think I deserve so much better.. He works yet he never pays for anything I feel like a signal mum our baby is 6 months and he’s only ever got 4 box’s of milk.. He don’t even do food shopping or pay for the bills it’s all me and my saving and am almost out of money I don’t know what to do please help me

    • Hi, I know that it is easy for other people to say to you that you should leave your husband, because you are probably scared of being a single mother and you think you can’t do it. I am going to be one of those people too, you are young and can do so much better alone. It will not seem like it at first, but you will eventually reach a point where you will ask yourself one day why you didn’t leave him sooner. I was a single mother of two children for over ten years and at first it felt like the world was going to swallow me alive with my children. It took about four months for me to finally wake up one day and realize that I didn’t miss my ex anymore. It was like this dark cloud had finally cleared and the sun was out (I know it sounds so cliche), but it is actually what it felt like. You are smart enough to realize that you deserve better and that he is not doing enough for you and your child.

    • Hey Me and my wife been married going on 2years in dec and she has two kids already 9 and 11 she is 30yo and I will be 26 in dec I have no kids but I love and cherish hers and a real man would step up to the plate and handle his business. We have been having fertility issues for a while and there is nothing I would like bad enough is a child of my own so to hear that he acts like that and you all are married is a no go. YOU CAN DO BAD BY YOURSELF! IF YOU GOING TO DO EVERYTHING ALONE BE ALONE. Its other men out there that don’t mind stepping in and handling business,

  23. Dear Brooke,

    My insight is that your husband has serious anger issues, and that he is an abusive man who might hurt you worse than he already has. You don’t make him angry – it isn’t your fault that he acts the way he does! He is blaming you, and that is classic abusive behavior.

    I’m 100% sure you know that abusive is a sign your marriage is over – or at least that your husband doesn’t respect or love you. My advice is that you leave now, before things get worse.

    Sincerely,
    Laurie

  24. Dear Lynne,

    I’m sorry to hear you lost your daughter. Something like that, you never get over. My prayer is that you and your husband are able to work through your grief over your loss, even if you can’t repair your marriage. I pray for healing and strength, that you and he can face whatever life brings.

    May you accept your marriage for what it is, and see reality for what is. Whether you and your husband work through your marriage problems or decide that your marriage is over, I pray that you move forward into the next stage of your life, and that you find happiness and peace.

    Blessings,
    Laurie

  25. I have been married only 2 weeks, and I already believe my marriage is over.
    He threatened to kill me on our honeymoon by waving a steak knife in my face in a crowded restaurant & 2 days later grabbed me by throat & told me he will kill me not once or twice but 4 times.
    He tells me I make him angry.

    Your insight please

  26. I have been married for 24 years . We have suffered a child killed. But the marriage has gone down since then. Its been 11 years since our daughter was killed. Every year gets worse and worse. He no longer will communicate to me. He doesn’t tell me were he is, were he’s been, when he’s coming home (he’s cheating I believe). We sleep in same bed but no sex. Hes spending money constantly. But won’t let me have any. I’m disabled. He says its HIS MONEY. I was hospitalized and he never even came to see me. He does text me back that he does love me but only if I initiate the text. I’m so lonely. He will not go to counciling. He wont even look at me. The few times he does talk to me its b to bitch at me. I can face its over!!!

  27. Dear Lillian,

    My prayer for you is that you’re able to accept that your marriage has changed. For some reason, your husband has decided he needs more from marriage, or he wants a different type of marriage. Maybe he doesn’t even know why the marriage is over – maybe he’s just as confused as you are. Or, maybe he wasn’t the man you thought he was. Maybe he was pretending, or he was changing and either couldn’t or wouldn’t tell you that he needed something different.

    Your marriage – as you knew it – is over. I don’t know if you’ll get back together with your husband, or if you’ll be able to move forward in peace. But, I pray that you find the courage, strength, and freedom you need to let the future unfold as it is destined to. May you accept what lies ahead, and may you find ways to be more peaceful and happy than you thought possible.

    Blessings,
    Laurie

  28. Aside from the physical evidence of his dishonesty at the very least, I feel in every part of me him getting father and father away. I’m not ready for this to end. , We have not been building up to it, I am still in great shape I’m 5’2 weigh 115 and my measurements are 36 27 38… which will improve once my body is finished going back to its former condition. Or sex life had always been fantastic,. We were very affectionate a few weeks ago, We have always confided in each other, and we share the same dreams and goals. So what happened? Did some strange woman really just come along and steal my husband from me and our children? I keep waiting to wake up and be so relieved that it was just a horrible nightmare. But I don’t think I will and now it seems the best case for me is if he begs my forgiveness and goes back to being my husband.He even gripes at the kids when he is home. Our 3 yr old won’t hug him and treats him like a guest who had over stayed his welcome. But my perfect husband and daddy hread disappeared without a trace. Please help

  29. Hi,
    February 20th made 7 years that my husband and I have been married. We have 4 boys together, all were conceived after we were married. When we got married we had just met each other 6 months prior and had been a couple for less than 2 months. We have had a lot of financial hardship, my mother died in a very sudden and tragic way, his ex has kept him from seeing his daughter h that he had before we met(I have never met her) and when he would try to make contact they would go as far as pressing false charges on him and having him put in jail, all for of our subs have severe hemophilia, he stopped talking to his family bc of the way they treated me like I was a second class citizen bc of the party of the country I was born and raised in which is the new Orleans area, and so on. As a couple we have always had each other’s back and have not met a problem we weren’t able to conquer. Both of us have always said proudly that we were soul mattress and we truly felt that way. Recently he went thru a period of unemployment and started showing signs of depression. I started finding in his emails where he wasn’t only getting promotional emails from dating sites but he had user ids and profiles set up. I am very sensitive about him looking at porn without me and her knows this I asked him at the beginning of our relationship if that was something he had to have and he promised me it wasn’t, but this was actual communication with real local women.I don’t believe he ever met up with any of them and he denied it being him. He actually said his brother may have done it as a joke.well a year goes by and things are fantastic he was working again, I got pregnant with our 4th son. Fast forward to present, he just got a new job about 3 hours from home. For the first 2 weeks the entire family went to stay with him at a motel. After the first week he began taking longer than necessary to go anywhere and bring very critical of everything I did.’ After each interaction we would have he would walk away talking under his breath but I only understiid his tone, which was bad enough. We had a huge fight that was completely unprovoked but he swore that I had said things I didn’t and he even told me he “couldn’t do this anymore” but I never found out what he was talking about bc our relationship was always fantastic. We were the couple that gave others hope and also the couple that caused also caused a lot of jealousy, but we were never passed by that. He brought me and the kids back home on the 18th of July and returned on the 20th very early in the am. He stayed in a hotel for the next week, but each night I wouldn’t be able to contact him after 8 pm. He would call me the next morning and say he had fallen asleep. Well the last week he has been staying home and commuting bu the first night back home after that well without us he was not happy and very short tempered and critical of me and the kids. About a week ago I was cleaning his memory on his android phone and stumbled onto his search history ask nd found that on June 8th he has looked up female escorts in New Orleans and then on July 12th and 18th he had gone to the same site , (backpage), and looked them up in the area he is working then looked for women seeking men.He also had downloaded an app called meet up. He spent his entire $1600 check on things he couldn’t remember but no money came home and no builds were paid.. I looked up his location history and found that each night he was at the hotel and many of the days that we were with him and he took very long trips to the grocery store that he had been at the same house in what looked to be a large shop. When I asked him about it he instantly started crying and saying that all I do is advise him and I want him to be doing these things so I could leave them he began accusing me of cheating. I am not even attracted to other men, seriously, I don’t even see them when they are in my face. He knows this. Well after the reaction he had I decided not to say anything about the other things and do some more pi work so he wouldn’t be able to deny it. I did let him know that unless he chooses To end things I wasn’t going to let his pour judgement and whatever desires he may have take everything from me and hurt our children as well.If he was being dishonest with me that he could tell me the truth and if he had a problem I would help him, Just please stop. Each day he gets home later and later and so I look in his search history and phone records and see that he is deleting texts and phone calls and spends up to 2 hrs each da at the same house. This morning when he was leaving he gave me the coldest hug ever, and I broke down.I began crying uncontrollably and instead of hugging me for real nd being concerned he instantly starting accusing me and saying that all I ever do is stall him and I should go ahead and leave that it’s obvious I want to. I don’t know what to do. Aside crib the physical

  30. Dear Dorean,

    Thank you for being here, and for sharing what you’re going through. You sound very unhappy with your marriage and life. It also sounds like you feel very alone, lonely, and not connected with your husband.

    You can’t change him. The only person you can change is yourself. So, you need to decide if you want to continue living this way for the next 20 or 40 years, or if you want to make some changes in your life. You can make changes in your life and still stay married — you can create a whole life outside your marriage! Or, you can make changes in your life and leave your husband.

    Whatever you decide to do, I encourage you NOT to make decisions out of fear or insecurity. Don’t stay in an unhappy marriage because you’re scared you can’t support yourself financially. Don’t let your fears and your past destroy your future.

    You have the power to control your life. You are stronger than you think, smarter than you realize, and more capable than you believe. You can dig deep into yourself and find the resources you need to make beautiful changes in your life.

    Where do you want to be in a year from now? Focus on things you can change — your surroundings, your activities, your daily habits — not on things you can’t (ie, your husband).

    Blessings,
    Laurie

  31. hi sorry i didnt know if my comment through but i do appricate you looking at the comment for me i just need some insight thank you Dorean

  32. my husband and i have been married for 20 years all together for 25 , We have three kids 22, 2018 . I know i love him but he showns no consideration towards my feeling or for what i do on a regular base at all , he dont help around the house.I do’nt work he told me earlier around when our kids were in school to be at home for them which i did. I go on family vactions by myself snice they were small and i still do. We went to Myrtle beach and he stayed in the room the whole time no kids , we didnt even go to beach. I’m home 24 hours a day i clean cook i dont mind i would just like for him to take me out once on a Saturday. I spent our 20 Annversary in the house doing nothing he, knew that day was special. He once told me to tell him when i thought it wasnt working out or i wanted something to change but when i do im crazy. I dont know if i want to go on being sad unhappy and so unappreciated by the person i care for . Please give me your insight

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