When your marriage is not going well.
When you are talking and your husband doesn’t listen or he cuts you off or he walks away.
When you are busting your butt trying to get things done and rather than being an active participant in the home, your husband shuts down, shuts the door and shuts his eyes for a nap.
When you have discussed the issues with your husband and come to an agreement, but your husband goes right back to where he was as if he never agreed to anything.
When you have just about had it dealing with a pattern of inconsiderate, insensitive behavior from your husband.
Do you feel upset? Do you think something is wrong with you for letting it bother you so much? Do you wonder why you can’t seem to get over it?
First let me assure you that you are perfectly normal and your emotions are working fine. It is normal and right to feel upset under these circumstances. Take a breath and let that sink in.
There isn’t something wrong with you.
It is okay to feel upset when you are being treated in an inconsiderate or insensitive manner.
These emotions are designed to help you recognize that there is a problem, so you can deal with it, rather than continue to live like this.
Many women spend a lot of time thinking something is wrong with them when they can’t “just get over it” when they are upset by a rocky relationship or being treated in an unloving manner by their husbands. There is no reason to think that you should be able to get over it until it is resolved. In fact, being upset is one way you know that things have not been resolved.
While it is not healthy to live in a constant state of hurt feelings and/or anger, it is good to recognize that something is wrong and to take steps to resolve the problem. It is also good to develop a plan on how you are going to live without being upset all the time.
A lot of women think that when their husband isn’t doing what he should to love his wife that she is supposed to be able to carry on as if everything is fine. The problem with this thinking is that everything is not fine and acting like it is makes a woman feel like a hypocrite. It also makes her think that it’s her problem, when it fact it is a problem with the relationship and if it is due to bad behavior on her husband’s part, there isn’t anything she could do to avoid it. She is upset because he upset her.
It is okay to be angry when someone does something that causes anger. Own your anger. Rather than saying, “You made me angry,” simply own your anger by saying, “I am angry, because I do not like being treated like that.”
The fact is that when you feel upset, it is rarely an indication that you are overly sensitive. It is an indication that something is wrong. The reason why you want to talk about it and want your husband to change is because something needs to change.
However, if you voice your concern by complaining, you may feel guilty, because you have been told that complaining is a bad thing. It doesn’t help if your husband argues that he’s not the one with the problem or he says that he is behaving normally and you are being overly sensitive or he changes the subject by attacking your response rather than dealing with the problem you are trying to address.
Compounding this issue is that you may feel that your want your husband to change, but have been told that it’s wrong to want to change a man.
Did you know that it’s okay to want your husband to change when he is out of line? This is contrary to the normal advice which is that woman should be satisfied with the man they married and not complain about his shortcomings. If this were correct, that would mean that a woman should be happy living a substandard life with a man who doesn’t treat her the way he should. That is ridiculous and you shouldn’t believe it.
Personally trying to change your man is different than wanting your man to behave as a kind and loving husband should.
This is not about little details that you knew were a part of him and accepted when you were dating, like him not being particularly tidy or him working on his motorcycle in the driveway. This is about how he treats you.
If your husband has become lazy about your relationship and is not taking your feelings into account in living his life that he has vowed to live with you in love, it is good for you to want him to change, but it is important for you to understand how to deal with the situation by changing yourself, so you will no longer be part of unhealthy patterns, but will develop your own healthy patterns instead.
There are strategies you can use to stabilize your emotions and to learn how to improve your circumstances. Catering to your husband and trying to be as nice as possible does not work. It can make things worse. Click here to find out why.
Leslie Vernick has written a helpful and inexpensive book called, “The Emotionally Destructive Marriage: How to Find Your Voice and Reclaim Your Hope” If your marriage is leaving you feeling upset and dishonored, this book will help you to understand what is happening and how to set healthy boundaries that are better for both you and your husband.
Click here for link to The Emotionally Destructive Marriage: How to Find Your Voice and Reclaim Your Hope book.
(This program is not longer available.) Another option is to invest in a program that teaches women step-by-step ways to resolve the issue of a husband who is not living up to his responsibilities in the relationship. This guide, Melt Your Man’s Heart, is a well laid out plan that covers how to stop enabling your husband and to start making choices that encourage him to treat you like he should, so he will learn to appreciate you. This has nothing to do with being prettier or doing more for your husband.
You will learn how to stop enabling him and how to influence him to treat you well.
Randall E. Bennett is a licensed marriage and family therapist with years of experience. He has developed Melt Your Man’s Heart as a way for women to relate to their husbands in an empowering, non-manipulative way that fundamentally changes the relationship. I have reviewed the program and found it to be right on target. (The review can be viewed here.)
Have you felt there was something wrong with you for being upset when your husband was being unloving? Are you tired of the strategy of trying to please your husband in order for things to get better? Feel free to comment below with your thoughts on this subject.
By Cynthia DeWitte
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Concepts: Negative patterns in marriage, Coping with difficult marriage, Developing a plan, Resolving marriage problems, Dealing with hurt feelings and anger, Stragegies to stabilize marriage and emotions, Stop enabling, Change relationship, Encourage husband, Influence husband