(Closed) Time together, expectations?

posted 5 years ago in Married Life
Post # 17
4262 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: April 2016 - Manhattan, NY

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rollinginthedeep101:  I would be upset too if I were in your shoes. Fortunately, my Fiance and I are on the same page and we like to devote our full attention to each other when we’re spending quality time together. I know that some people need more “alone” time than others, but is it really alone time if your husband is just spending it with other people? I don’t think that counts. I would be upset if I felt he needed to be in constant communication with everyone but me.

Has he always been this way or is it a recent change? I guess I would try to get to the bottom of why he needs so much time for other people. Maybe you two can talk with a therapist about it? Best of luck. 

Post # 18
286 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

You guys need a weekly date night. No cellphone or computer distractions. Just alone time. Then build from that. My husband went through that with his cellphone and I had a talk with him about how it made it me feel. He’s made a concerted effort since, though I still need to remind him occasionally.

Post # 19
3532 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2015

My biggest concern with this is that his behavior has changed drastically. 

I would set out clear expectations, like

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NFLwidow:‘s date night, and go from there. 

DH started working a lot (like 7 days a week a lot), and I was feeling neglected.  We both found that if he takes some time to totally focus on me (even 10-15 min) before he goes back to work for the evening, it satisfies my need to connect with him.

Post # 20
198 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2017

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rollinginthedeep101:  This is so bizarre, I have no words. How long have you been married? How long have you been together total? Did you live together before marriage?

Post # 21
198 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2017

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rollinginthedeep101:  To give my initial thoughts… you two have a serious problem. He finds other things (his family, friends, phone, computer) more interesting than you. That is the truth that is being spelled out here.

Have things changed to the point where you do not have as much in common? What sorts of things do you do together? Do you have shared interests?

The point is, if there is nothing that will bring you away from life alone, to a life together, he will not want to interact with you.

You mentioned that you “busy yourself when he does his computer things”. That is worrying. Are you being fully engaged in your own life, in your own relationship with yourself? I find that if DH is paying more attention to other things in his life, it’s because I’ve become disengaged with myself and am no longer really contributing intellectually/emotionally to the relationship.

Just my two cents, because I see a little bit of what you’re going through as similar to things DH and I have worked through.

The bottom line is this: you do NOT want to have to force him to put his phone away to spend time with you. That is treating him like a child, and you will have to face the fact that he doesn’t want to be spending time with you, but you are forcing him to. Ultimately, you two need to rebuild your friendship and rekindle an INTEREST in each other!!!


Post # 22
3133 posts
Sugar bee

When you were engaged you both were in that uncertain situation where you had to put in lots of time and effort or one of you might walk away from the relationship.  Now that you are married you have to put in just as much and maybe even more effort because marriage need time and love and humour and patience and kindness and dozens of other things.  

You have realised this but your husband hasn’t.  He thinks that now you are a married couple he can put in less effort than before.  So he’s paying you less attention.  This is bad news because he will only get less attentive as time goes along unless you do something soon.  It is also a sign of a power imbalance – he has more of a say what happens in the marriage relationship than you do.  Calling you ‘clingy’ is just a way of saying that what he wants to do is more important than what you want to do.  What he should be doing instead is devoting himself to your happiness.

Let him know that this is completely unacceptable and that he needs to be ten times as loving and romantic now that he is married.

By now I suspect I would have cut the plug off the computer and thrown the phone out of the car window. Twice.  But I’m not suggesting that you do this.  Volatility is probably not the way forward, however tempting.

As a starter, make sure you present him with a list of what you would like him and you to do together – cinema, walks, candlelit dinners, book groups, swimming, horseriding, theatre, drink at a bar, etc.  He needs to provide a similar list.  Twice a week you are going to have date night.  Other people may advise you to have one night per week but as you are worth twice as much as other women you deserve two nights per week.  No phones or computers should be used except to book cinema tickets or restaurant tables.  No phones or computers afterwards.

On other nights of the week if he is out so are you.  Get a gym membership or join a club.  Don’t sit at home waiting for him.  Do something exciting instead.  

If he doesn’t agree to this then head straight for couples counselling.  You need all this sorting out asap, especially if he is putting his family above you.  He has to put you first every time.

(Just a quick question.  If he spends so much time on the computer and phone and has friends calling round all the time how does he fit in time to do his half of the cooking, shopping and housework?  If you are doing all or most of it you need to stop right now.  You are his wife not his mother.)

Post # 24
7433 posts
Busy Beekeeper

Ok so I don’t think this is necessarily as doom & gloom as others. To me, it sounds like y’all are in a funk, which could hopefully be worked through with compromise and communication. You’ve said a lot about how your needs aren’t being met right now, but I wonder if your husband is feeling the same way and maybe that’s why he’s being a dick about spending time together? I’m not excusing his behavior, just trying to look at the big picture.

Not to go all marriage counselor on you, but I think it’s clear your “love language” is quality time…lately your husband isn’t giving you that, so you feel unloved and miserable. Do you know what your husband’s love language is? If you’re not sure, think about the things he complains about or criticizes you for…that is how I figured out what my FI’s love language was (words of affirmation). Once you figure it out, start speaking to him in that language. If it’s words of affirmation, for instance, tell him how much you love him, pay him compliments on how handsome he is, etc., to make him feel loved. The key is to create an atmosphere of positivity rather than one of negativity and complaining. So rather than saying “you don’t spend any time with me, I am miserable!” – ie accusing him – try speaking to him in his love language and see if that makes a difference. Then when you guys are together sometime and the mood is good, you could lightly suggest a date night, and I bet it would go over better with him than if you framed it as “YOU NEVER HANG OUT WITH ME AND IM MISERABLE CAN YOU PLEASE JUST PUT YOUR PHONE DOWN FOR 10 MIN.”

to be clear I’m not criticizing you behavior at all! I would feel the exact same way in your position. Just offering some suggestions. Hope it gets better!

Post # 25
1710 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

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rollinginthedeep101:  we spend one weeknight together (we both have hobbies and I have a girls night once a week that take up the other 4 weekdays). We usually have a show that we both like to watch so we do that, or play a game (board game, card game, pool, etc), go out to dinner/movie. On the weekends we normally spend the day together and then hang out with friends at night (mutual friends, so we are technically still hanging out together, just with other people too!), or we have family commitments that we usually go to together (unless they happen to fall on the same day, then we each go to our own). It works, we both get lots of “me time” so it’s even better when we get to spend time together 🙂 and we don’t get sick of each other!

Post # 26
279 posts
Helper bee

I’m prolly gonna get chewed out for going in this direction but….

…Is there an incentive for him to put his phone down/step away from the computer/not spend time w his brothers? 

Is he bored with alone time between you two alone?

Are you bringing something to the table that is fun to do/interesting to discuss/exciting to enjoy together….or are you just saying put the phone down and spend time with me because you’re married to me and that’s what I want, so that’s what you should want too?

If you’re sitting around waiting for him to “spend time with you”, and aren’t cultivating a personality of your own that contributes to the relationship, that may leave nothing to discuss, nothing fun to do etc. 

The Fiance sits next to me playing video games as I type this. Tues and Thurs are video game nights where he n his buddies play online. This means I either busy myself with hanging with friends, reading books, going to the gym, catching up on my netflix shows and wedding stuff etc. This gives us something to talk about on other nights. 

We do a mix of planned activities with others (so you could actually plan a fun activity w his brothers instead of finding yourself on opposite sides…like laser tag or Dave and Busters??) and we do a weekly date night out. But the weekly date night isn’t just us sitting across the table going ‘sooo…how was your week?” 

Sometimes we go find a place with cool live music, we do a pub crawl, we even take the crayons they put down to draw on at the restaurant on placements, and we play hangman through out dinner or pictionary. 

These are ideas to keep things fun and interesting…when you were dating, you probably did a bunch of fun stuff while still maintaining independence. Sometimes that goes away with marriage. The point is to keep things spontaneous, fun, and exciting….incentivize each other to have fun spending time together. Eventually you’ll both be having so much fun, you won’t even remember to look at your phones. 

Post # 27
4845 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 2016

KareKoosh: PREACH! It is so important to work on yourself and do things you enjoy. It betters your relationship when you have interesting things going on in your life apart from your marriage.

blackinthesuburbs: Haha I agree that we often agree! Must be an independant woman thing 🙂

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