Post # 16
We got married because we love each other and we saw a future together. When we were long distance, all we did was communicate. When we moved in, we had to make some adjustments, but I think he is having a huge problem from going from a bachelor for 25 years to a married man.
Our premarital counseling was awesome. I was so confident when we got married. I was not expecting this.
Post # 17
Was their a point that your relationship was actually good? You say you want to “save” your marriage but honestly from your posts it doesn’t seem like there I was ever much to save!
You disagree on basically all large and small aspects of life and relationships, from career, where to live, what to do in your free time, finances … vowstowoes :
Post # 18
zzar45 : Why was he texting himself from his work phone to his personal number about you being toxic? I’m not even sure that makes sense.
The only thing I can think of was he was being super passive aggressive and wanted OP to read it.
Post # 19
I agree with the other PPs that it’s hard to know what’s going on here as there are not a lot of details.
If you don’t mind me saying so, you seem to be casting a lot of the blame on him. That’s just how it reads. I am sure he is contributing (perhaps a lot) to this strained situation, but true change comes from self-awareness. A good therapist will tell you that as well. You will be asked to examine yourself before you point the finger at your partner. I definitely think counseling is a must for you two.
Your husband will need to be willing to make some changes, but before you even think about that, I would start thinking about what you can do differently. Read all the self-help and marriage books that you like; it would be nice if he were to read them, but you cannot force him to do so. I would stop making that a topic of argument between you. Trying to make your partner read something comes across as a bit mommy-ish, so if it were me, I would drop it. I would read the books for the help it would give me, and if he expresses an interest, I’d share with him what I had read/learned.
Secondly, you say the only time you spend together is when you eat. Have you tried having fun together? There must be activities that you both enjoy that you can do together, whether it be seeing a movie, playing sport or doing exercise or maybe attending a fun event of some sort. Something to distract you and build on the good moments. If it were me, I’d start making suggestions until we hit on something that worked.
Finally, it really sounds as if the two of you don’t argue well. Try seeing if you can lower the intensity of your arguments. Speaking calmly, avoiding criticism and name-calling, speaking in “I feel…” statements. Therapy can help you with this if you both are willing.
If you don’t mind me saying so, it sounds as if you might have rushed into marriage without fully assessing whether you are compatible.
Post # 20
vowstowoes : Didn’t things such as careers, where to live, planning for the future come up in premarital counseling?
Since you felt those sessions were successful can you go back to that person together?
If he won’t go to counseling with you now then go on your own. One person changing the dynamic can help to change the relationship. At the end of the day all any of us ever really can do is change how we handle things, we can’t change other people.
Post # 21
We have had much better days. We have a few hobbies in common, but they require a lot of commitment (an entire weekend to drive to the places where we can enjoy the outdoors and camp).
I’ve asked to maybe do a couple smaller, less intensive things together during the workweek, but that is his TV time. I get 2 days a week with him and now that it’s winter, I get less. Talking over dinner without distractions was something I had to fight for.
I understand that this post is deflecting blame. It wasn’t my intention and I am usually very self aware. I took it upon myself to realize that I can’t bring up things with him more than once. It hurts when he volunteers to read something or share something with me or do something together and then doesn’t fulfill that promise and fills his time with TV.
Post # 22
vowstowoes : You’re avoiding all the questions about career and life goals and issues before marriage and how they have or haven’t changed since. If you married him knowing he had these major career goals and how they would impact your life together it’s odd you’d expect that to be different now. It’s equally odd he would expect you’d be happy with little time together if he knew you needed more time together to be happy.
Post # 23
vowstowoes : Sweetie, it shouldnt be this hard. You either need to go to counseling or walk away. There are a lot of issues you two are dealing with, and unless you can talk it out, its never going to get better.
Post # 24
Career wise, I spent a lot of our engagement trying to get a position with his employer. This employer has multiple groups doing several different things, so it’s possible to be here for awhile and have a fulfilling career.
He isn’t happy with this first group. He’s trying to get into a different, more experimental group, which is closely tied with this emergency response group he’s been drooling over. He doesn’t have a good reason to get into the response group other than “it’s cool and I want to ride in a helicopter.” I don’t know how this supports his ultimate goals. He mentions that most people in the group are divorced (something that we discussed before getting engaged)but that it is nearly impossible to get in. I have objected this transition from the beginning and I’m not being heard. Should I just support this?
Post # 25
vowstowoes : I found myself cringe-ing through most of this post.
I am going to say this delicately, but it sounds like you are driving him bat-shit crazy. You would drive me bat-shit crazy! If I worked 12 hour days, the absolute last thing I would want is being bombarded with “let’s read this marriage-improvement book together” even if it’s just one chapter. Him being in front of the TV is his way of winding down and I would be annoyed as shit if I kept getting bombarded with these marriage books. He’s saying he’ll read them to get you to leave him alone and you have to understand that. It doesn’t sound like you guys even knew each other before getting married. I know this must be really rough, but that’s just my honest opinion and I am hope it proves helpful in some way. Good luck.
Post # 26
Is your husband a thrill seeker? It sounds as if he could be, based on the way you describe his job. He’s working with something very sensitive. And he wants to join what you’re designating as a high risk emergency response group that could take him to combat zones.
If he is, indeed, a thrill seeker by nature, that drive is very powerful. It often makes them great at what they do, like Navy SEALs, but not such great life partners. They’re wired very differently than the rest of us, and thank gawd for them, we always need a certain supply of these guys. But, they don’t do well with normalcy for extended periods.
High sensation seeking has its origins in the brain, as do so many mental conditions. It isn’t pathological, though, it can turn up in some syndromes. It also tracks with testosterone levels and will generally decline with age.
Displays of irritation if he feels too confined or constricted would make sense.
If this is not working for you, it may just be a bad match. Soldiers, SEALs, and SWAT guys (men far outnumber women on this) can have successful marriages, but the divorce rate is astronomical.
Of course, I could be reading this all wrong.
Post # 27
After reading your updates, it really sounds like the two of you aren’t compatible. You have completely different long-term goals. You don’t like his career (which I think is reasonable in this case). And then you have completely different day-to-day preferences. Cleaning, sex, budgeting and spending time together are not small things. Those are the things that happen every single day. They have to be worked on. He needs to be willing to listen to you address your needs and issues. It sounds like he really isn’t willing to do that right now. That’s not good. Since you have so many different goals and preferences, there is going to need to be a lot of compromising from both of you.
Right now the two of you aren’t communicating at all. Were you good at communicating before? Or did you just talk a lot? Could you truly communicate your needs and work on problems together? Could you bring up an issue that just one of you was having?
From your post, it sounds like you are feeling neglected, unprioritized and unloved. You are trying to make things work and it sounds like your husband has completely disengaged. I think it is time for the two of you to have a serious conversation. You need to lay all your cards on the table and share what you are feeling about how things are going. You need to press for counseling. If he is unwilling to work on your issues, then you need to decide what you are willing to endure.
Right now, your relationship sounds completely one-sided. And it sounds like your husband’s work will always come before you. As your relationship stands, it is not going to last and that’s not your fault. It takes two. At the end of the day, one person cannot single-handedly save a marriage. If your husband isn’t willing to work on it, there is nothing you can do.
ETA: I didn’t see your updates about thrill seeking until after I posted this. That just confirms my suspicions that work comes first for him. I mean he is even trying to get you to work at his job. He’s trying to combine you and work. And he doesn’t seem to have a good reason for wanting this job other than it sounds cool. And he doesn’t seem to care how it will affect you. It even sounds a little, delusional. He sounds like he is wrapped up in the glamour of adventure and glory and doesn’t care about who he hurts or how he gets there or how it affects his loved ones.
Post # 28
vowstowoes : So you’ve known this is his career goal since before you were even engaged? Why would you marry someone who wants to spend his life doing something you don’t agree with, support, or want to be a part of? Were you just hoping he would fail to get in? That’s not a foundation for a successful marriage.
There is nothing wrong with what you want, Bee, you just want it with someone who wants something else.
Post # 29
Thanks. I’m not sure where the idea of me constantly bombarding him is coming from. I’m not that insensitive. I do get upset when he blows me off for an entire week because he choose to work 12 hours when he is only required to work 8-9.
Post # 30
There were a lot of other variables and dreams and goals in the mix when we were engaged. I didn’t take this seriously because there were other things he wanted to do that seemed reasonably achievable. Maybe I did want him to fail getting in the ER group, but what do you do? I never told him I wanted him to fail, but I didn’t want him to get in? I guess I just wanted to see where things went and maybe I could handle it better in future when it was actually a reality?