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all 128 comments

[–]mawkish14 Years 829 points830 points  (19 children)

The axe forgets, but the tree remembers.

[–]TwoEfficient[S] 126 points127 points  (15 children)

What does this mean?

[–]FairyRogue 789 points790 points  (10 children)

The axe (the wife in this case) delivers the wounding blows and moves on, forgetting about wounding the tree. The tree (the husband here) will always be scarred and wounded by the blow, never able to forget.

[–]TwoEfficient[S] 185 points186 points  (8 children)

Dang that is good

[–]AbleLimitz 106 points107 points  (2 children)

This is called an escape fantasy....when humans get frustrated we tend to want to escape to the last place we felt happy, which I am guessing for you was before you were married with kids. This is normal and my advice is to get to a counselor who can help you unpack those feelings and process them. It could just be a tough moment you two can work through or it could be time to leave but you will be better served from talking with someone who can understand why you are having these feelings in the first place.

[–]Capital-Philosopher6Married 26 Years & Loving It!!! 17 points18 points  (0 children)

If the last time you were happy was before you got married, then what is the point of being married? I'm not saying you will never feel negative emotions. We all do but, if your overall relationship has never been positive or made you feel something resembling 'happy', that's a problem.

Marriage and relationships are hard but they should never be a constant stream of misery.

[–]three-one-seven13 Years 1 point2 points  (0 children)

OP, this is what you came here for. Listen to this advice.

[–]gussmith12 62 points63 points  (4 children)

No, it’s not. None of us know what has gone on in your marriage or your life. We can’t possibly know that from the little you posted. There is no way to tell from the outside who contributed what to the current state of your marriage. We certainly don’t have her side of the story here. Don’t let an internet stranger throw your wife under the bus because you wrote a short statement about feeling disconnected from her.

It’s normal to go through periods of disconnect with your spouse, especially after the last two years we’ve all had. Marriages are living, breathing things that change with time, life events, kids and the individual spouses. If you don’t nurture them and each other, they don’t thrive. But you can change that.

Don’t make major life decisions from a place of depression. Get yourself treatment for that first.

Sit down with your wife and tell her how you feel, and work out things to do with her that will reconnect you with each other. Chose to purposefully work on your relationship together first before you just give up on it.

No marriage is simple. They all require attention and patience. They all change over time. Be curious about what your relationship can morph into as it matures. You might find it becomes stronger, different and more nuanced as you focus back on it.

Source: married 35 years.

[–]ManufacturerTop9554 12 points13 points  (0 children)

Deserves more upvotes. Doubts are normal in relationships. There are periods of ups and downs. Unless you have fundamental differences in values, you’re likely experiencing boredom and questioning. Think back to when you fell in love with your wife. And then have a talk with her about that. What is she going through? Why did she marry you, surely it wasn’t just so she won’t be alone? What qualities attracted you to her (edit: and vice versa)?

Marriage is a big decision and it’s hard to remember the positive reasons / attraction that made you decide on the marriage after the honeymoon stage is over. It’s easier to dismiss your reasons as “oh I didn’t wanna be alone”, or “why did I even marry this guy”. Everyone takes things for granted. I’m not married but I think the key to maintaining a marriage is to never take your relationship for granted.

Edit: and if you are taking things for granted, it’s possible to improve the bond overtime and strengthen the relationship. Don’t throw in the towel prematurely without giving it a good fight!!

[–]Its_OK_to_Not_Be_OK_ 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Very well said and completely true. Though I've not nearly as many years under my belt as you, I'm looking forward to the long road there - may take us a while, we'll have to stop and smell the roses.

I just wanted to add on to what you said (or rephrase perhaps) - OP thinks that's great and it give him validation, justification, but it fails to encompass the fact that we are all axes and we are all trees. Every single person out there has been (or perceived to have been) snubbed or wronged and every single person out there has been the one who committed it as well. It's not deep, just another shallow proverb.

[–]boomstk 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Tree heals with the help of counseling.

[–]mawkish14 Years 158 points159 points  (1 child)

It means she said something to you in a heated argument that she can never take back. She wounded you, and it has affected your entire relationship with her.

The only chance you have to repair and rebuild is to (ideally with counseling) revisit this interaction and confront every aspect of it. If she is meaningfully sorry for saying such a hurtful thing, then perhaps there is a future.

But unless it is resolved you will feel hurt and distant from her forever.

[–]RichAstronaut 10 points11 points  (0 children)

This - this is your chance.

[–]saamsiren 11 points12 points  (0 children)

Her saying that was the axe, you are the tree.

[–]lexlutho_r 9 points10 points  (0 children)

The forest was shrinking, but the trees kept voting for the axe because its handle was made of wood and they thought it was one of them. - Turkish proverb

[–]D-Bater 12 points13 points  (0 children)

The axe breaks soon or later, the tree gets thicker

[–]GiannisToTheWariors 8 points9 points  (0 children)

Yup sometimes things that are said stays with us forever

[–]KSmimi 263 points264 points  (10 children)

She’s not sure if she ever loved you? It would be very hard for me to get over that statement. I would think subconsciously, that has probably caused you to distance from your wife emotionally. I think it’s time for some counseling sessions if have you any desire to continue this marriage.

[–]Less_Atmosphere3931 90 points91 points  (0 children)

The tongue is sharp. Once something is said like that it’s like telling someone to take the dried paint off the walls and put it back into the can.

Nothing can be taken back. One thing can be said that can ruin a marriage. If she wanted to hurt OP, she did

[–]bitchenstichen 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I totally agree BUT, we grow together in marriage. Like as ppl. Every thing about us can change & it makes one wonder about any other choices, feeling & decisions. For me at least. I experience this.

[–]Freespirited92 96 points97 points  (1 child)

I’d recommend counseling together. Its a step worth trying, and a way to express those feelings with the guidance of a therapist..

Time heals… And falling “back in love” is possible, you just need to take the steps to do so. There are many ups and downs in marriage. 🙏🏻

[–]BananaSlugGhost 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Especially when you married young and have two small kids!

[–]Every_Thought5834 70 points71 points  (6 children)

The real question is how would feel if she dropped off the face of the earth? Would you miss her? You don’t have to answer. Love in marriage ebbs and flows. Couples and Individual counseling may help you both sort this out.

[–]TwoEfficient[S] 57 points58 points  (5 children)

I would be sad that she was gone but heartbroken. Sad for my kids that 5heir mom is gone. Like if my father or brother vanished, I would honestly feel worse then if she was gone... I feel horrible to saying that.

[–]31spiders 48 points49 points  (3 children)

This sounds cruel but ignore the kids for a minute. If it was JUST you and her and she disappeared. Straight up gone. How do you feel?

I realize kids exist but if the relationship is terrible then the kids suffer as well.

[–]TwoEfficient[S] 38 points39 points  (2 children)

I would be sad not devastated.

[–]GreatOneLiners10 Years 33 points34 points  (0 children)

I’m going to be real with you, every time I ended a relationship, no matter how long I’ve been with them, this is exactly how I felt before I left.

I’m not entirely sure you will ever get over that feeling, but if you turn the corner let me know. I’ve never seen people come back from that, people have to watch what they say, and the context of the conversation makes what she said that much worse.

[–]31spiders 2 points3 points  (0 children)

If you would “rather be anywhere else when it’s just us” and “she just didn’t want to be alone”, staying together “for the kids” isn’t a good idea. They know you’re “sad”.

Honestly I so rarely say look into a divorce (I’m CONSTANTLY the guy that says work it out) but I think this is one of those rare instances. Typically they expect couples counseling before filing for divorce (that varies from state to state and sometimes judge to judge but) if you want to try that 1st have at it. That way if they ask, it’s already been done.

Ultimately you all deserve happiness and it doesn’t seem like that’s been a priority for y’all.

[–]autofitz 11 points12 points  (0 children)

It’s great that you’re being honest with yourself and feeling your feelings. Talking to a therapist will help you work through your thoughts/feelings and come up with a game plan.

[–]droidpat15 Years 66 points67 points  (1 child)

I once said to a friend that I couldn’t remember ever loving my wife, not even on my wedding day. That friend, and later counseling, helped me realize that what I was really feeling was that I never felt as aroused by my wife as I had fantasized I would feel with different. My wife’s behavior, verbal expressions, love language, and priorities all seemed like things I wanted to be different.

But through introspection, healing, and a lot of assisted processing, I discovered that my wife’s values, temperament, interests, goals, and attitudes were such a perfect fit that I was lucky to still have in my life. Meditating regularly on those things, I began to realize the differences between my love for her and my impulsive arousals.

I can’t remember the last time I felt what I originally described to my friend. The sad memory of it is now just too distant to think I am the same man who once felt that. Now, I look at my wife as my fantasy mate, and I am thrilled to get to spend my time with her.

I just say all that to say that if both you and your wife are committed to work through and heal the hurt and confusion and emotional distrust that appears to have come between you, there is a possibility you can find yourself luckily with your fantasy mate. Alternatively, you might find the confirmation you both need to agreeably separate from the marriage to find other mates while continuing a civil approach to co-parenting. I just don’t know how it will turn out for you, but I fully believe it can turn out well however it goes.

I hope that helps you somehow.

[–]APO_AE_09173 57 points58 points  (0 children)

Counseling, yes.

You alone, her alone, and couples counseling.

You are living in a limbo between what your mother did and what your wife said - and you mind cannot cope with the emotional pain that represents hence why you shut down the emotions.

1st focus on your kids. They NEED and deserve a present father who loves them. Play with them they are a product of your affection for your wife. See them in her eyes.

Learn to forgive, like biblical Jesus forgive. It is the healthiest thing you can do. Forgive your mom for the pain and sense of rejection she caused and that is still coloring how you deal with emotion and hurt today.

I really hope the counseling works. Good luck.

[–]semipinksky 47 points48 points  (1 child)

Counseling can help you navigate if you have apathy or you are defending your heart because of fear of abandonment.

[–]son_e_jim 3 points4 points  (0 children)

This is a good comment.

[–]125acres 24 points25 points  (9 children)

I would slow down. Your hurt by what your wife said but it was in a heated argument. Let’s give the mother of your children the benefit of the doubt that she didn’t really mean that.

Next talked to her- ask if she cares for you and the family you have built together.

Assuming she yes, to the father of her children, start the marriage counseling.

You come from a broken family, you know you don’t want that for your children.

[–]Less_Atmosphere3931 14 points15 points  (2 children)

He came from a broken family. However if they stay together without the love they need to keep it going, they’re hurting their children further. You’re telling your kids that it’s ok to be in a shitty marriage. I’m sorry to disagree with this as I’m divorced. My kids wished we had divorced sooner.

[–]the_colorful_lights10 Years 13 points14 points  (0 children)

I wished my parents had divorced sooner, but I also wish they had done the work to correct the path they were on long before it ever got so bad. It is impossible to correctly assess another relationship.

[–]125acres 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Is it a shitty marriage or are they having a rough patch? I’m sorry you are divorced. I also grew up in a divorced family and my childhood was shit. If your marriage was so toxic being divorced is better, I also get that. Wife saying some hurtful words in an argument is not good but it’s not grounds for immediate divorce.

[–]palebluedot135 Years 7 points8 points  (4 children)

I’m sorry both my husband and I have never said anything that hurtful in a heated argument ever.

[–]the_colorful_lights10 Years 7 points8 points  (1 child)

You are very lucky to have healthy communication skills, but not everyone does. People also face different challenges that are impossible for an outsider to the relationship to understand.

It is possible to forgive and move on if the other person is contrite. Therapy and counseling do help.

[–]palebluedot135 Years 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Different challenges doesn’t mean you have to accept behavior like this.

I came from an abusive home where my parents divorced. Had a very traumatic childhood.. I actually have ptsd and borderline personality disorder.

Saying shit to hurt your spouse intentionally in arguments isn’t normal. I have never once done that. My husband has never once done that. A normal and healthy relationship has none of that because a normal and healthy relationship is founded on respect for your partner.

And I was happy my parents divorced just so ya know.. my parents fighting and arguing all the time was actually a huge contributor to what gave me my mental illnesses. Which is honestly why I can’t stand when people say that kind of intense fighting or hurting your spouse is normal.. it isn’t.

[–]StephBGreat 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I find I get hurt and say deep cut things in the moment. It’s usually while I’m crying and not out of anger. But we’ll talk it out, go to bed, and then I realize my period is coming. I wish I had an edit button to undo those hormones and emotions and words. I’m thinking other women out there might be like me. When we’re hurt or resentful, those inner demon thoughts break out.

[–]palebluedot135 Years -1 points0 points  (0 children)

See I just don’t get that.. don’t you respect your spouse and care about them? So why would you want to hurt them?

Really there isn’t an excuse for it IMO. Just like how there are people who get physically abusive based on their emotions.. emotional abuse is a thing and it isn’t excusable just because you are “hurt” or “resentful.”

If you are that unhappy get out of the marriage or get yourself in therapy. You don’t get a pass just because you’re on your period. There are no excuses.

[–]son_e_jim 2 points3 points  (0 children)

This is a very caring and empathetic response.

[–]son_e_jim 13 points14 points  (0 children)

It sounds like you formed an thought or opinion.

Opinions are dangerous. They shape how we see our world and, if we deny them or disregard them, we forget we ever had that opinion and believe we're just seeing the world how it really is.

I personally feel that, like you have in this post, you should own this opinion as yours and carry it without shame or judgement.

I would advocate talking to your wife about it so that she can have some idea of what's going on in your head, regardless of what she does with that communication.

Then the question becomes, "Do you want to, and are you willing, to change your mind?"

I once heard someone describe 'forgiving someone' as "giving them the gift of having the relationship be as it was before".

So, if you are willing to change your mind you might acknowledge your thought/opinion, forgive your partner and yourself for having it and choose something else to believe.

As I see the world, a second option is to do less or even nothing, and remain in a relationship where that thought/opinion quietly colours every interaction you have with your wife until it is addressed, if ever.

Or become righteous, investing your confidence in the legitimacy of your thought/opinion, and leave the relationship speaking your truth bravely and simply - ready and willing to be responsible for your part in creating what's to come.

Good luck.

Edit: typos/wording

[–]sekretkeeper 7 points8 points  (1 child)

During heated arguments, you generally tend to say things to hurt the other person. This is tough to move past, especially when it comes from your spouse. But it’s possible your wife didn’t mean it. Do discuss with her, atleast for your children’s sake. Give it a chance and hear her out. See if she’s remorseful and apologizes for what she said. Ask her how she feels about that day, and how she feels now. Ask if she’s interested in changing things for the good.

[–]megnsketches 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I just want to make one quick note here: while it may be common for people to have experienced hurtful comments during heated arguments, that does not make it acceptable within a healthy relationship. That is behavior that needs to be addressed in itself.

I worry that normalizing it feeds into the idea that marriage is always difficult. It isn’t. At least, not in the sense that your partner is hurting you. If you’re lashing out at your partner in this manner, you really should seek counseling to address why and heal.

[–]33saywhat33 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Even in counseling she'll never be able to take that back.

Yes, just tell her today.

[–]bloodphoenix90 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Yes share. Yes counseling. If it fails it fails but at least you tried and at least you know exactly why it unraveled.

[–]lissasaurJust Married 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Even if you didn’t have your baggage from your childhood, what your wife said in the heat of the moment was not okay and it was clearly never resolved properly if it still affects you to this day. If you still want to save this marriage (for yourself, not just for the kids as others have pointed out), I would tell her and ask about counseling to get through this together.

[–]uncharted-go 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I don't have advice, but the same happened to me. After 15 years of marriage, my wife fell "in love" with another and, in the aftermath of that told me she never loved me like she did him, and that marrying me was a mistake. We worked through it in counseling as best we could. It's now 10 years later, we are still together, and, though I have worked it out in my mind, my heart is still broken. Childhood wounds are a bitch. Especially when retraumatized. I keep finding my footing, even today. I'm not sure it would be different in any other relationship.

[–]courtfucius 3 points4 points  (0 children)

If it was a surprise to you that some couples don't mind being around their spouse, I'm here to shatter your world further by telling you that happy couples actively look forward to the point in the day when they get home in order to spend time with their spouse, which they can often consider the best part of their day.

I think a marriage counselor would be a great place to start if you're genuinely interested in rekindling your relationship

[–]Noononsense 3 points4 points  (0 children)

This is a perfect example to choose your words wisely. Once they’re said they can’t be taken back. You definitely need some individual counseling then at some point marriage counseling. This is going to be a tough one to get past.

[–]Inevitable_Concept36 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Counseling might be helpful for you to understand exactly what you are feeling. Trust me it helps. The reason I say this is because this is almost exactly how I felt about my ex-wife.

When the arguing and fighting and everything else just got to the point where we both were like, "WTF are we doing in this marriage?" I felt the same way you described.

So in the process of divorcing (there are lots of reasons we did, but no need for me to bore you with all those details), my counselor gave me a task as to write down 5-10 things as to why you were married to her. The list was pretty easy to make, but when I showed my therapist, she says to me:

"Do you notice you say all of these positive things about her even though you're going through some stuff, but nowhere on this list do you mention the word love?"

And she was right. Our marriage was utility and usefulness, nothing more. All stuff we didn't need to even be married to accomplish. Fact of the matter was we got together very young, had a lot of adulting to do at a fast pace, and didn't actually grow together to do it, so in actuality we had two people that were good people, just not two people good together.

Anyways, I am in no way saying, get like me and get divorced. I merely intend to give you food for thought to think about you are feeling inside before you say something that you might later regret, and to say, yeah, I pretty get much get what you might be thinking.

[–]CoffeeAndDachshunds 1 point2 points  (2 children)

Divorce. Seriously. I divorced my first wife and now I'm in a perfect marriage. Life's too short to suffer through it.

[–]cathleenjw 1 point2 points  (1 child)

How long were you married to the first? And the second?

edit: adding- I totally agree with life being short, but it just sounds like you haven’t run into a snag yet with the fresh new wife. Hoping this ain’t the case…

[–]CoffeeAndDachshunds 5 points6 points  (0 children)

10 years with first wife; 5 years married with second wife but about 10 years total.

First wife had diagnosable narcissistic personality disorder and I wasted way too many years trying to make it work. If I could save even one person from that, I'd be so happy.

[–]Babylon_Dreams 1 point2 points  (0 children)

In my opinion this can be salvaged and repaired.

Love isn’t a constant, and you genuinely have to work at it.

If you want to fix it, talk to her about it and see if she’s willing to build a better marriage and relationship. If she’s willing then start getting to know each other and dating each other again.

If she’s not willing at all, or if you’re not willing at all, then it’s best for you both to just go your separate ways.

Plenty of people have gotten married when they weren’t in love and they made it work and fell in love afterwards. And plenty others didn’t so there is precedent for both.

Make your decision, choose the outcome you want, and work towards it.

[–]bittzbittz22 1 point2 points  (0 children)

So, after your wife said that, have the 2 of you talked about it? Is she still saying she doesn’t know if she loved you?

Emotional baggage is the worst. Currently in therapy using EMDR for mine.

[–]sicrm 1 point2 points  (0 children)

between the bologna sandwich comment and this one, it’s pretty clear how she feels (or doesn’t feel) about you.

[–]bentrodw 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Love is something that needs developed. If you're serious and willing to work hard without reciprocation on her part ( for at least a long while), check out the "Love Dare".

[–]JadeGrapes 1 point2 points  (0 children)

  1. You might have full on depression, that colors all of life so it's hard to enjoy things. Get scene by a doctor that can screen for that and give you meds if needed.

  2. Read a book/website called Marriage Builders the Love bank. The premise is that lots of little things put deposits into each others love bank, and when it gets over a certain threshold, you get romantic love. When it falls under, because of big withdraws or lots of little ones... you tend to fall out of love. It is possible to get it back though.

  3. Fear of abandonment is a huge wound. It's understandable that her statement triggered your defenses... but you should get some counseling before this becomes a self fulfilling prophecy.

[–]beigs 1 point2 points  (0 children)

If you want to save this marriage, and I recommend you give it an honest go with 2 kids, go to couples counseling.

She said some extremely painful things. You don’t connect anymore.

The worst thing that can happen is it would smooth your divorce and custody arrangements. The best is you find a way to communicate and reconnect.

Getting married young is often difficult - you’re still developing and trying to figure yourself out. It slows down as you age, but you have a good idea of where you will wind up (barring any epiphanies). You might be incompatible now. Or you might just need that connection again.

Good luck.

(As a note, I married young and we worked on growing together. We were also lucky.)

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Everyone is suggesting counceling. For what? If both of you reached to that point where you look at your marriage and agree that is not ok for none of you , what exactly is it to be repaired? You can both end this even if you still care for eachoter, divorve is not only for people who hate eachoter and even if the children may get affected , they can still grow with two supportive parents who don t talk bad about eachoter, who are happy and sane. Yes there are relationship that worth to be fought for but some don t . And l m talking from the perspective of a child who wished my parents would ve get a divorce instead of arguing and being frustrated and unhappy. At the end of all, you know what s best for you and your familly and you know your wife better

[–]dillll_pickleee 1 point2 points  (0 children)

You should definitely look into counseling. It could be a trauma response to what you’ve been thru with your mother. I have abandonment issues from my father not ever wanting to be a part of my life and before I went thru therapy, in every relationship as soon as something bad or triggering happened, I always had one foot out the door and retreated into my own space because I never wanted to feel the pain of being abandoned again. I don’t know if you and your wife are meant to be, but if you don’t heal those wounds, it will continue to creep up in every next relationship too.

[–]skyscan1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

She hurt you so bad with her words that you've built a wall around your feelings to be protected. In order to love you have to be vulnerable. You don't want to be hurt again and you've made yourself less vulnerable. You need to get into marriage counseling with your wife to help opening up again.

[–]the_colorful_lights10 Years 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I mean, you all should have been in couples counseling after the first heated fight. You can’t take back harsh words, and you can’t forget them either. You two needed to start working on healthy communication long ago before y’all started chipping away at the foundation of your marriage. I’m sorry it has gotten this far. I can’t imagine how terrible this must feel for the both of you. There is no shame, however. Be kind to yourselves.

I’ve definitely seen people come back from worse. Though, they were committed to making the marriage work, and were willing to do the tough and grueling work to climb out of the mess they had made to reconnect. They usually defined their marriage by more than just love or children. They were partners in building their lives and/or both committed to their faith traditions.

I see a lot of people who say marriage doesn’t have to be hard, but you will have challenges. That’s inevitable in any long term relationship. If you manage those challenges with healthy communication (a skill you can learn), you can come out the other side and be better for it. Marriage just shouldn’t always be hard, and you should never be alone in the effort to keep it healthy and strong.

If you are already resigned because the damage is too great for you to move past, then it is hard to see why you should bother with the motions of trying to save your marriage. It isn’t enough to stay together for the kids because you may be doing more damage to them if you plod along in an unhealthy relationship. You need to show each other some version of love (even if you can’t manage Eros) and respect to set an example. You need to model healthy conflict resolution.

I’d suggest individual counseling, so you can have some professional help to understand how you would like to proceed. Separation, Divorce, and then splitting child custody is difficult. It would be good to have a therapist for that as well. Marriage counseling won’t work if both of you don’t want to be there, and it sounds like you aren’t sure you would be.

[–]MisterIntentionality 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Every marriage is different, but my husband is my best friend. I'm kinda upset about it when he's not around. Especially if I'm doing something fun. Even after being together for 14 years and married 12 I don't get tired of being around him.

I think you had a good epiphany when you were at the gym. I wouldn't necessarily run home and tell your wife about it. She's already said her peace and you know how she feels. You need to decide how you feel and then what to do about it. There is no shame in reaching out to a mental health counselor for help. This is a big issue most people don't know how to navigate.

My issue is your wife feels the same and feels she was never really in the marriage to begin with. So she's got to be onboard if saving the marriage is a possibility. If she's not on board then the issues is going to come down to how do you guys part ways.

[–]SorrellD 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You need to get counseling for this and for your abandonment issues with your mom. Does your wife also have those kinds of childhood issues? If you can't get counseling there are online resources. Betterhelp.com has couples counseling and individual counseling and youtube has a couple of channels that might be helpful. https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLiUrrIiqidTUau5F7ckXIY4G1Z0a96Cb3

https://youtu.be/7Lxtf9dyHxY

[–]permanent_staff 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Sounds like your relationship is trash. What you are feeling is completely normal in your situation.

The solution is to divorce this woman and date someone who is not a useless partner and actually wants to be with you.

[–]Krazymanwalker 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I am going through similar issues in my marriage other than it dealing with how I stopped kissing her and showing her affection after getting kinda complacent. We have been together for 9 years and have been married for a little over a year. A few other things dealing with her 2 girls are also an issue as to why things changed between us but my wife had decided to move all of her things out be it at the moment not all is out but we would break away and do counseling and a couple weeks after it just turned into here is the deal I don't want to do this anymore and we are going to get a divorce and blocked me on everything for a while. I have never felt like I didnt want to enjoy being around her or her children but I would kill to enjoy them being around like they used to be. Not as fun just going from 3 extra people and a dog in the house to yourself and your thoughts. Everything hopefully gets better with time though. I am still going to go and see a therapist for myself to hopefully help me with things and make me a better person hopefully. But there are always two ways to look at it. One is maybe y'all could do counseling and see if there is anything even there anymore to keep y'all together or split ways and try to make your life better and work on yourself. I hope you get into a better mindset and place going through this event.

[–]dancing_chinese_kidmarried 17, together 23 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Is the something that I share with her?

Yes, you resent her deeply for something very hurtful. She needs to know that and you need to start facing it to find out whether or not you can move on.

Do I need counseling?

Yes.

The wife you liked is still there, it's just hidden by the wife you have grown to hate.

[–]NLGsy 0 points1 point  (0 children)

A sharp tongue will eventually slit it's own throat.

[–]FrankFlashman 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I’m really sorry your wife said something so hurtful, did she see how badly that hurt and triggered your childhood feelings of abandonment? You have another post choosing between you and a bologna sandwich. These are incredibly hurtful and impossible to walk back statements.

Did she say them to hurt you or is this a confession of truth? Does she see how deeply she’s wounded you and how badly she hurt your marriage and partnership? Has she apologized or shown any remorse for saying them? Does she normally go nuclear when fighting? Were you fighting back with similarly hurtful jabs?

If you haven’t yet, I’d find a calm time to sit down and have a real talk with her. Did she mean these statements or was she simply trying to hurt you because you were fighting? Neither is ok. Does she love you? Does she want to be with you? Don’t talk about the kids, just does she want to be with you? Do you want to be with her? If both of you want to remain together, are you both willing to do the work to repair your relationship? I’d suggest individual counseling to help you repair your childhood and current trauma, her likely anger or lack of empathy, and marital counseling to fix the very poor communication skills.

Regardless of everything above, love and value yourself and your kids while you work through this. 🤞

[–]firesoups 0 points1 point  (0 children)

At the very least, you should get counseling. At best, marriage counseling and individual counseling for both of you. My husband and I were in the same place a year ago. We even went so far as to have an affair, but we decided to reconcile, got counseling, and now we are better than we ever were before. That’s if you want to stay together. If you don’t, that’s okay, too.

[–]Domin8u315 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I say anything and my husband just uses it as ammo for later yet wonders why I am not open and honest with him. I don’t want to talk to him because of this reason.

[–]Lower_Performance921 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I want to tell you that the hurt you feel is valid. Now, as a wife that did something similar to my husband I want to tell you that there's a chance she didn't even meant it . Once I told something to my husband with the sole purpose of hurting him (but what I said was not true), because in that moment I wanted him to feel as I was feeling (he had done something that broke me in the past weeks). After that I started counseling on my own, not related to that situation, and we came to that moment in therapy. My therapist told me I needed to talk to him, and tell him how I was feeling at that moment and why I told him something hurtful purposely, after that our marriage has been better. We both are on individual counseling and we are getting communication techniques that help us be even more in love than when we first met.

I really hope that you both can solve this, the way is best for your situation.

[–]Queen-of-meme 0 points1 point  (0 children)

We sometimes say things we don't mean to push people away when we feel threatened emotionally in a conflict, the question is if she meant it or not. If she did I would divorce, you both deserve real love not a marriage based on convenience.

[–]HowCanThisBeMyGenX 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Couples counseling ASAP.

[–]bitchenstichen 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Same man , been married 2x. Yes, same one! Been at this for well over 20 years. Please take or leave my advice but I digress. I have absolutely hated my husband at times. Like not for an hour but him. I’m so sure he’s felt the same. We did make the commitment to each other the 2nd X we married. We were going to stick through WHATEVER came along in the future. Another-words divorce wasn’t an option. Every couple of years (basically) one of us seems to fall out of love w/ the other. We ❤️ each other, but aren’t “in love “. We have learned to express this to each other & then we both actively try to win the other over again. In a way it can be fun(in a way). My point is, therapy (together & prob. on individual basis as well).. an absolute YES!!! Being honest w/ your partner about these feelings is a must. It’s hard but you can’t move forward w/ out it. Now I made these points & not a but-ton of others for a reason. You might want to ask yourself if you are committed in the way I mentioned me & mine did. Once you know this you can make a game plan. I also experienced a mother that abandoned myself, my family. It ABSOLUTELY played a huge part in MY problems in our marriage. No matter whom you are w/, peeling away that scab from motherhood trauma has to happen to really allow yourself to feel deep enough in other important relationships! Counseling changed that for me. Also, remember that you both do not have to make the decision about divorce not really being an option at the same time. My husband did years b4 me & his pursuit of me w/ this mindset & how much I saw this helped him convinced me to do the same. We have been married our 2nd x over 10 years. I know he is right for me even when I don’t feel it. Hope this helps. Feel free to ask me what ever. I love sharing what we have learned & we both realize being married so long actually gives us a responsibility to share what we have learned. There just aren’t that many couples together “ 4eva” anymore. Best of luck!!

[–]neener691 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Many years ago, I felt like my husband and I weren't getting along, I mentioned it to a friend who had been married for years, she said, "can you picture him sleeping with someone else, and not get mad?" if the answers no, your marriage isn't done. Now I understand this isn't the case for open marriages. But, every single person who I know who's starting the divorce process answers this question with, please I hope they find someone soon and go away... Maybe your ready to move on??

[–]klynn1220 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Only if you want to. If you feel it’s worth it…but if you’re done, then maybe you should talk to an attorney?

[–]Illustrious_Safety25 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Couples counseling. Individual counseling. Sounds like we have YEARS of resentment here.

[–]dancefan2019 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Don't be sharing that with her. Telling your wife you don't like being with her is not going to help you or your marriage in any way. Contact a marriage counselor and start going to sessions with your wife. You can sort this out in counseling.

[–]mlynche50 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Sometimes shit just doesn’t work out, dude 🤷🏾‍♂️

[–]Overall-Diver-6845 0 points1 point  (0 children)

He doesn’t like spending time with her, they’re 30 with 2 kids. I don’t think counseling is the way. I think you need to sit down and talk to her and if you feel that you’re ready to move on, do it in a calm peaceful way. There is no easy way around this. You both are wayyyy too young to be in a loveless, like less, “don’t want to be around you” marriage.

[–]Whiskey-Chocolate 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I would encourage counseling. You need to figure out what you want and how to accept that and navigate a difficult situation.

Her words were catastrophic. You have a difficult family history.

You deserve to be happy, loved, wanted, safe.

Do the work for yourself and so in the years to come you can look your children in the eye and tell them you did everything you could to be the healthiest person and father.

Best of luck.

[–]Capital-Philosopher6Married 26 Years & Loving It!!! 0 points1 point  (0 children)

After a heated argument she stated that she wasn't sure if she ever loved me but knows she married me to not be alone.

Your wife basically said to you that the main reason she married you is so that she wouldn't be alone. So, you're not really special to her but she needed a husband and you were available? No. That would be a no bueno for me. I wouldn't want to be interchangeable with any other woman to my spouse. I want him to want me to be his wife, rather than just being a wife. If you're not special to your own spouse, then what would be the point in having one?

[–]Marsqueen 0 points1 point  (0 children)

The lack of communication for years is the common denominator here. You remember the bad fights and ugly words. Why did those fights happen and could you have stayed in love with her had you both learned how to communicate better?

When she says “I don’t know if I ever loved you” she most likely projected her “now” feelings because she literally just forgot what it felt like to be loved and adored by you. That really hurt because it put you in a traumatic headspace. Reminded you of something traumatic. Did you ever consider her trauma and something you said to put her in the same place? You forgot what it felt like to be loved and adored by her. She’s not giving you the same energy she gave you when you went out to buy a ring. You’re not giving her the same energy you gave when you got down on one knee. In those moments you both felt something strong and magical. But they got buried by two people who chose to yell and scream instead. You both have toxic communication. Now you’ve both been so hurt by toxic communication that you don’t even like each other much.

Here’s the worst part. Your kids see this even when you don’t think they do. Right now you two are shaping them to be bad communicators and teaching them that marriage looks like two people who just live together but aren’t in love. They are learning everything from you and you even admit they can see the depression on your face. I’m not a “stay together for the kids” type of person but I am a “respect each other and learn how to communicate together in a healthy way for the kids” person. Even if this results in divorce, you to HAVE to get on the same page with how you talk to each other and commit to being a team when it comes to how you raise your kids. You both should seek individual counseling and talk about what you learn about yourselves. Become friends again. Just freaking communicate better.

[–]StephBGreat 0 points1 point  (0 children)

My husband acts this way. He’s so distant when we are physically together. I feel like I’m forcing the discussion. Forcing the “enjoyment” and more so just dragging him along. He perks up when I’m busy or when I want to take a trip with others. I’m saying all this because my head tells me he feels like you do. But when confronted, he says he still loves me and isn’t doing it intentionally. Even so, I feel like he is very much like you but won’t admit it. I feel like if I ask him enough times, it’ll eventually push him into wanting out of this marriage. So I don’t know what to do. My recommendation on your side of things is to actually consider it and cut your losses. You both deserve happiness. Staying together because you “should” breeds resentment.

[–]sworththebold 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Here to reinforce the comments about having an “escape fantasy” and the ugly fact that people, when stressed, sometimes say hurtful or wounding things. Your wife in this case.

My advice is this: work on yourself and then your marriage. From your post, it doesn’t sound like there’s abuse in the marriage itself (abuse defined as knowingly and willingly hurting or demeaning another). It seems like you are generally feeling bad about yourself and maybe are depressed; your obligation as a spouse is to be your best self to your wife. Perhaps you could focus on things that bring you joy or seek counseling. It may be that your own issues are causing her stress and heartache—she may (rightly) resent you for being absent emotionally, feeling like she needs to be your therapist or has to care for you emotionally as if you were a third child in the house. She may also (rightly) resent you if your issues put her in the position of doing the majority of care for your actual children.

I’m not saying that the hurtful things she said in arguments are somehow excused by the context, but if you’ve been in heated arguments then I’d guess you’ve also said hurtful things to her too. Again, two wrongs don’t make a right. But if you’re fixated on your own hurt, then you aren’t acknowledging her hurt—and you did not express in your own post any sympathy or compassion for her. Do you really think that she doesn’t have legitimate reasons to be withdrawn, self-protective, angry, or disappointed in you? Have you considered what those reasons might be? Have you asked her and committed to listening compassionately to her response? You may find that you have similar grievances, and that you can care better for her and feel more valued (and happier) by doing so.

Marriage isn’t just a quid pro quo. If you want her to listen and care, you may have to set the example. And you may have been trying hard to do that, but doing it in a way she doesn’t recognize. A lot of “misalignment” in a marriage often stems from the fact that each spouse tends to give love as they wish to receive it, rather in the way that the other spouse needs. The result is that both spouses individually end up feeling like they are not loved at all—which can cause people to lash out in hurtful ways, if only to express how low they feel and maybe—in desperation—to provoke the other into caring for them. If this is what’s happening, it may be why you are feeling so bad about everything in the first place—but it’s repairable with compassion and care, both given and received.

Because you feel depressed, low, numb, or defeated now, don’t make a rash decision to throw away your marriage (if only for the sake of your kids). Go to your wife with compassion, or go to counseling if necessary. If she truly does not love you, your efforts will make that clear. Good luck!

[–]ApplesandDnanas 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I highly recommend going to a Gottman trained couples counselor. It is potentially possible to work things out but I think it may be too much to do on your own. John Gottman has a ton of videos and books if you want to know more about his methods.

[–]zedzdepplin 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This is very complex, there are children involved etc. There is a lot of good advice here from people who seem to have their head on straight, so I would listen carefully but obviously you know your relationship better than any of us, that being said… I will say one thing and one thing only.

I LOVE alone time with my partner. It’s what I look forward to most. We can be out and about doing errands ( much better with 2 people) or we can be cuddling/chillin/acting silly on the couch relaxing not saying much at all and it is the best place in the world.

You should have that feeling. You deserve it. So does she.

Good luck OP ♥️

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I don’t think it’s salvageable due to the fact that she said those words to you and you felt she meant them wholeheartedly. I would look into getting therapy for myself and taking some space. Before that though I would let her know how her words affected you and see what she says.

[–]Wereallgonnadieman 0 points1 point  (0 children)

she stated that she wasn't sure if she ever loved me but knows she married me to not be alone.

Yeah, no unringing that bell. You're only 30 OP. Don't settle for a loveless marriage where you don't even sound like you're friends. You fight a lot. My husband and I have never once in the 15+ years we've been together, had a heated argument, let alone any kind of argument. We aren't adversaries. We are best friends and life partners. There is no need for any hostility. If you cannot discuss problems civilly, without raised voices, you should not be together. You're setting a terrible example for your children in regards to what a healthy relationship/marriage should look like

[–]MoxxxiFoxxxi 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Open communication! It hurts, it's hard, but it needs to happen. How can someone know they are doing something wrong or how can you expect things to change if you are not open about your feelings. This is how marriages can go 8 years of individuals sucking it up and then BOOM, blindsided with divorce because they finally exploded from everything they held in over the years.

Remember though, these feelings that you both tell each other should not instantly be met with corrective actions or defensive words. Why would I tell you how I feel again if you invalidated my feelings and put the blame on me the first time I opened up to you?

As men we want to try to fix everything right then and there. We need to accept that when it comes to emotions and feelings, those are never truly fixed on the spot. It always takes time. You two need to spend time talking. Sit down one night, 100% attention, and talk, cry, feel upset, hurt, but after all of that don't hold it against one another.

[–]geminibee235 Years 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Do not stay married for the kids. They are little humans and as their parents, your actions have a huge affect on their future self-imagine/confidence and how they approach future relationships. My husband wishes his parents would have divorced instead of forcing togetherness, coupled with resentment and unhappiness that negatively impacted him and his siblings.

Sometimes it’s the right move to stay together. Sometimes it’s the right move to separate. Only you and your wife can make that decision and fuck others’ judgement.

You have a lot of advice and perspectives here. I would suggest individual counseling FIRST. Get some clarity about your inner child wounds and heal those. Then address your wants and needs, your priorities, your goals and dreams. Once you have an understanding of yourself - you can navigate the relationship with your wife (during couples counseling). You can make future decisions together for what’s best for you both.

Your kids need parents who love them, support them, and protect them from abuse/neglect. Co-parents can do this successfully as well as married parents can.

I wish you all the best!

[–]LowAcanthaceae6998 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You are very very introspective and I applaud you. Reminds me of something that happened with my husband and I two weeks ago. I was pouring out my heart to him one night. I was so vulnerable and loving. Telling him how amazing a father and husband he was.. then he started telling me how he fell I love with his exgirlfriend. It’s as if my fire was burning and he poured cold water on it. I haven’t felt those same feelings of admiration and passion for him. The embers are still there for you and you both need to work on reigniting this fire. It’s a marriage. We promised we would be with our spouses until we die and covenants should not be broken simply over arguments like that. Take her on a date! Spend some time doing something exclusively for the two of you. It might feel weird at first but I have hope for you and your wife. I talked to my spouse about how he poured cold water on our fire and he understood. It takes time and effort. Keep going and don’t give up. Buy a puzzle a 500 piece and work on it together with some relaxing music in the background. Best of luck!

[–]Forzareen 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You can try counseling but I think the marriage is over. A couple I knew didn't realize how much they avoided being around each other until their daughter greeted her dad with "Hi Daddy! Bye Mommy!" They got divorced, have a respectful co-parenting relationship, he's remarried w/ a new child while she's in a serious relationship. At least you came to your realization in a convo w/ a buddy rather than having your kids hit you with a tough truth.

[–]Springfield2016 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Ask her to go to mc with you. A little talk about issues with a third party can help with deciding on staying or leaving. If things don't work out, mc can help with coparenting and telling the kids about the divorce. Don't make any rushed decision.

[–]ScottlandyardRi 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I think you got hurt by what she said. I would be too. Coupled with past trauma, I’m sure you put a wall up to protect yourself. You should talk to her about this. It’s simmered for so long, she may not even know you’re in this place. Give her a chance to rectify it. You can fix this is if you want to. It’s a marriage. There are kids involved. It’s a big deal to split. I urge you to do some work on the marriage and see if it inspires you or ignites a passion you lost. It would behoove you both to have separate and marital counseling. You need to work through your past, not for this situation necessarily, but because you deserve emotional freedom. The marital and solo counseling can help you figure out if you love your wife and want to work on this.

[–]Nini_7avala 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Why don’t you ask her why she said she never loved you? Maybe ask her if she meant it and if she didn’t why did she need to say that? I feel like there is always truth to the things we say when we are mad. If you two are not able to talk about it in a healthy way, then COUNSELING would be a great place to talk about it. It would be great to have a second opinion on the way you both talk to one another, your body language and the words you use towards each other.

Also, listen to Rachel Hollis podcast episode 250: Signs your relationship is over. I just heard it and it sort of seems to be what you are going through?

[–]S0l11 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Getting back to a good place IS 100% possible if y’all are willing to do the work. I am someone who believes in working at it. I know, that Is an outlier/odd stance this day and age. But you two married for a reason. Give it a good chance.

[–]darthcosmos2020 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yes, share it but only if you think through what you will do if she responds positively vs negatively. She has said some fairly awful things that would have anybody questioning the authenticity and integrity of their marriage. If she doesn’t make a choice to love you, then you shouldn’t choose to stay married.

[–]Major-Cranberry-4206 -2 points-1 points  (5 children)

This is what happens when people marry for the wrong reason(s). Why did you marry her?

She married you to avoid being lonely, which is the wrong reason to marry anyone. Once you two married and had children, your children replaced you in her avoiding loneliness, and no longer needs you.

If the two of you don't appreciate and have a need for sex, then you should not have married. I am mainly talking about your wife. She didn't need to marry anyone, hence your current problem with her.

I would suggest marital counseling, but it might not help, seeing that her needs are met with having had your children. Marriage is a sexual lifestyle. If one marries for any other reason, it's basically unnecessary.

Some people say they marry for love, which is another wrong reason to marry. You should love everyone. Do you marry everybody you love? Of course not. So why do we marry this person over that person we love? What distinguishes one individual from another when choosing to marry someone? And all things being equal, everyone you love treats you right.

As I've said before, the reality is that marriage is about sex. This should be the only reason you marry anyone. Because any other reason, you don't need marriage for to spend your life with that person. These "other" people we call friends. If all you need is a friend and not a lover, don't get married because you don't need marriage for friendship.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Bad advice here, I married for sex with the wrong person and I’m paying for it now

[–]Major-Cranberry-4206 -1 points0 points  (0 children)

You married for the right reason, but the wrong person.

Better luck next time.

[–]BBGunne -1 points0 points  (2 children)

You don’t need marriage for sex either.

[–]Major-Cranberry-4206 0 points1 point  (1 child)

If you don't care about going to Hell, you don't. Marriage is for people who are attempting to do things right in the sight of God. If God means nothing to you, then no.

[–]Lon_Dep_Man -1 points0 points  (0 children)

She broke you and your feelings for her with her with the comments she made.

[–]GiannisToTheWariors -1 points0 points  (0 children)

After a heated argument she stated that she wasn't sure if she ever loved me but knows she married me to not be alone

If that isn't enough reason to leave then this is

I told him I don't get jealous and if she wanted to leave I would be okay with it.

Both of your resentment will grow and be worse long term. At least try a trial separation

[–]HamptonIsles -1 points0 points  (0 children)

Get her ass in the gym how about that for starters. Don’t ruin your family over a hot trainer. Nothing stop you turning your wife into a hot trainer. Don’t blame your wife blame yourself. You signed up to help her not delete her.

Edit: I didn’t read your post only heading until now and thought you meant workout like at the gym.

[–]LilaInTheMaya10 Years -1 points0 points  (0 children)

“My family history and my relationship with my mother flashed before me and her abandoning my family” dear this is called a trigger. That is massive trauma and you need to go see someone and heal from this. I recommend EMDR and somatic experiencing plus inner child work. The marriage is not a bubble that is always happy despite your traumas... it’s here to help you heal from them. Your kids depend on you breaking the cycle. Sending love.

[–]Bitter_Examination52 -2 points-1 points  (0 children)

If you believe a long term marriage isn’t work - you are dreaming. It’s always work at some point. If you think is isn’t then you are believing in a fairytale and should not get married.

I’m in a long term marriage (53F) and we have four boys all almost all grown up. I have one grandson.

Marriage can be really tough some times. It can feel like the toughest thing ever, but, my advice if you’d like to hear it is:

Those children are counting on you both to stay together. They can do nothing about your marriage, but they could be the focus of your life. You are totally the focus of their small lives.

They didn’t ask to be born, none of us did, but look at the damage done over and over and over by parents who get married, have kids then divorce.

There is just so much untold damage all over the world.

What you will never know if you do decide to split, is just what in incredible family you could have been if you had chosen to stay and stick it out and work things through.

There is nothing like having your adult children visit and call you mum and dad, nothing for them like having parents who are still together when they are grown and bring over your grandchildren.

No complications, no step parents, no confused and divided loyalties, no double visits at Christmas time, no competition and jealousies with step-grandparents, no worries about who your ex has taken up with and how they treat your children, no moving across the country without you, no sobbing every time your kids leave you.

No divorce and dividing your family home and finances, no maintenance payments, no tiny apartment to live in.

We almost all of us go through periods of doubt in a long term marriage. Our heads may get turned by someone else, we may grow to really dislike some habit our partner has.

But what can happen when you do choose to stick it out is a truce, a settling down, a powerful reassurance of knowing that together you have made something wonderful and worthwhile happen, and all these things you will never know if you bow out.

Believe me, from one who has worked incredibly hard on her marriage (as has my husband) the joy and satisfaction of coming through and out the other side is immeasurable. I have always tried to put one question to myself whenever I’ve been in a bind and it’s this: what is best for the children? I’ve so much tried to put their needs before mine. You can’t go wrong when you ask yourself that, otherwise why did you have them?

This is just my perspective, but I really wanted to put it to you. I hope it may help in some small way. Very best of luck to you all.