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Old 01-02-2012, 09:55 AM
 
146 posts, read 244,510 times
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I don't have a particular question, but rather a complicated relationship and am looking for advice/comments from people that have had similar experiences or simply feel the ability to offer something:

I've been married for 12 years, and we have 2 kids together. Both my spouse and I were married before. I have 2 kids from a previous marriage, she has none. My older kids are now adults. Both of them lived with us at times while they were younger. We have had a few situations that have caused issues with our relationship. I have on a few instances caught her in inappropriate conversations with male "friends". I don't believe there has ever been any physical infidelity, or even the talk of it occurring. In one of the "inappropriate" conversations the guy even asked her if she had ever cheated and she said "no". And the odd thing is that I don't check up on her. I've found out about these conversations by complete accidents. Once I tried to block and copy text on our computer and I hit paste instead of copy and it pulled in the last copied text and it was her conversation. Another time she texted me instead of him by mistake. We have talked about all these things, but my wife is a very poor communicator and I often feel like she is telling me what I want to hear, rather than what's in her heart. At first she stated that her conversations were always proceeded by a time in which I was taking her for granted and not showing her the romance and attention that she craves. She has also admitted that in part she has a weakness for craving attention from men. In each of the cases when I've caught her doing this she has lied repeatedly to save face. So I don't really know for sure if I have gotten the whole story each time. She swears that I know everything, but of course I'm forced to wonder.

About 5 months ago we moved across country to the area that she grew up in. Since then our relationship has suffered greatly. She seems way less "into" me. I'm fairly certain that she is not having an affair, as I'm pretty aware of where she's at most of the time. None of the other signs of an affair exist. I have confronted her several times regarding how she treats me and that she just doesn't seem all that interested in me anymore. She has said that I'm arrogant, sarcastic and condescending towards her friends. I claim that she seems to like her friends better than me, which leads to some of my resentment towards them. I have suggested we go to counseling in an attempt to resolve some of our issues. She has agreed, but just doesn't seem to be as invested as me. One of our big issues is that she claims that I'm not romantic enough for her. She wants me to hold her hand in public and display other forms of affection like that. I'm not big on public displays of affection. I tell her I love her often, buy flowers out of the blue on occasion, and do hold her hand or put my arm around her when I think of it. She seldom complains, but then when I bring up that she seems to be distant, then she complains about my lack of affection. I can't help but feel that she has fallen out of love and that putting it on my lack of affection is more of an excuse than a reason.

I moved here for her. We met in my hometown and lived there for 12 years together. I moved to her hometown, where I knew no one. I moved away from all my family and friends, because I knew she wanted to move back. The point of this is that I'm not some selfish, uncaring guy. I am hard working, have a degree, and am a good father. She would agree with all these things. But I can't seem to satisfy her. I am at a loss as to whether I'm capable of satisfying her, or whether the way I am regarding public affection just wouldn't satisfy most women. I think the other good qualities should outweigh the bad. I know it's impossible to answer without knowing us, but just looking for some insight.
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Old 01-02-2012, 10:05 AM
 
9,408 posts, read 13,739,789 times
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It isn't that complicated. She's bored with you that's all. It's an easy trap to fall into after many years together.

You need to recreate those first few months of being together in the very beginning. If you can both go back to that time when you fell in love you can rekindle the fire.

Think back to that time. What were you doing, what music were you listening to, what circumstances can you make happen again? I know it sounds kind of corny but you fell in love with one another once, you can do it again.

You may have to make a bit of effort and she might resist it at first, but you can at least try.
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Old 01-02-2012, 10:16 AM
 
146 posts, read 244,510 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Djuna View Post
It isn't that complicated. She's bored with you that's all. It's an easy trap to fall into after many years together.

You need to recreate those first few months of being together in the very beginning. If you can both go back to that time when you fell in love you can rekindle the fire.

Think back to that time. What were you doing, what music were you listening to, what circumstances can you make happen again? I know it sounds kind of corny but you fell in love with one another once, you can do it again.

You may have to make a bit of effort and she might resist it at first, but you can at least try.
Throughout our marriage we have recognized times where that "spark" was missing. We've done things and continue to do things to rekindle. I just can't help but feel a lack of appreciation for what I have done. I can't make our relationship go back to being like it was before on any kind of consistent basis. We have kids and many other responsibilities that keep us from doing that. Sometimes it's hard to want to work to "rekindle" something with someone that doesn't appreciate what you bring to the table on a daily basis.
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Old 01-02-2012, 10:26 AM
 
9,408 posts, read 13,739,789 times
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You don't have to rekindle the fire and go back to how it was on a daily basis, that simply isn't practical.

If you want your marriage to work, then do something more than what you're doing now. She's the one pulling away from you for whatever reason.

You can choose to just let her continue this distant vibe or try to improve the situation. It sounds as if she might not be as willing as you so be careful, you may just lose her completely. You can't make her appreciate the things you already do unfortunately.
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Old 01-02-2012, 10:32 AM
 
Location: 39 20' 59"N / 75 30' 53"W
16,077 posts, read 28,557,959 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scooter1967 View Post
IShe has said that I'm arrogant, sarcastic and condescending towards her friends. I claim that she seems to like her friends better than me, which leads to some of my resentment towards them.

I have suggested we go to counseling in an attempt to resolve some of our issues. She has agreed, but just doesn't seem to be as invested as me.
She agreed to counseling, I would follow thru and pursue and you'll know how invested she really is.

Resenting her friends bc 'she likes them better' sounds like a child. You can fix it easily, act like a grown man.
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Old 01-02-2012, 10:40 AM
 
37,617 posts, read 45,996,704 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scooter1967 View Post
Throughout our marriage we have recognized times where that "spark" was missing. We've done things and continue to do things to rekindle. I just can't help but feel a lack of appreciation for what I have done. I can't make our relationship go back to being like it was before on any kind of consistent basis. We have kids and many other responsibilities that keep us from doing that. Sometimes it's hard to want to work to "rekindle" something with someone that doesn't appreciate what you bring to the table on a daily basis.
What anyone "brings to the table on a daily basis" is generally NOT going to do much to spark the flames of romance. You don't really sound as if you are "into" your wife much anymore, either. Obviously you can only present one side here, but it would be interesting to hear your wife's perspective. From what you have said here, your wife sounds as if she is pretty insecure, possibly even unstable...certainly attention-seeking and somewhat selfish. Is she? If so, what even attracted you in the first place? I can't help but get the feeling that you have given up on this relationship, and are looking for some validation for your lack of desire to do anything more. Is that the case?
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Old 01-02-2012, 11:00 AM
 
1,090 posts, read 1,834,387 times
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OP, what do you love about your wife?
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Old 01-02-2012, 11:03 AM
 
146 posts, read 244,510 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by virgode View Post
She agreed to counseling, I would follow thru and pursue and you'll know how invested she really is.

Resenting her friends bc 'she likes them better' sounds like a child. You can fix it easily, act like a grown man.
Obviously it's pretty hard to communicate everything perfectly in this type of forum. I quickly stated a disagreement without getting into a ton of detail. A better way of putting it would be that she tends to get very defensive when I say anything critical about her friends. She seems to value their feelings over mine. When we are all together she seems to prefer their company to mine. All of these things combined make me feel as if they are more important to her than I am. This has cause me to resent them for I feel as if she is leaning on them for things that she should be leaning on me for.

You really should refrain from insulting as it doesn't do anyone any good (except maybe you).
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Old 01-02-2012, 11:11 AM
 
146 posts, read 244,510 times
Reputation: 79
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChessieMom View Post
What anyone "brings to the table on a daily basis" is generally NOT going to do much to spark the flames of romance. You don't really sound as if you are "into" your wife much anymore, either. Obviously you can only present one side here, but it would be interesting to hear your wife's perspective. From what you have said here, your wife sounds as if she is pretty insecure, possibly even unstable...certainly attention-seeking and somewhat selfish. Is she? If so, what even attracted you in the first place? I can't help but get the feeling that you have given up on this relationship, and are looking for some validation for your lack of desire to do anything more. Is that the case?
I'm actually more worried that's case for her.

Is she attention-seeking and somewhat selfish? I think so. On one hand she would agree with that statement and then on the other hand she would say that I don't pay attention to her enough which has caused her to seek other attention.

What attracted me to her in the first place? Her looks and her personality. She loved sports and was very outgoing. I fell for her the moment we met. I can't say it was anything else more specific. She was just one of those where I saw from afar and pursued. The more I got to know her the more I felt like she was what I was looking for. As for today. . I still enjoy being with her. We laugh together, and she is a wonderful mom. Until recently I always felt like my happiness was foremost in her mind. Now I don't feel that way anymore. She seemed concerned before with whether I was happy, now she doesn't even seem to notice.
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Old 01-02-2012, 11:14 AM
 
146 posts, read 244,510 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sydney1987 View Post
OP, what do you love about your wife?
I love that she has a good caring heart. I love that she is a great mom and puts her kids above all else. I love that when we are close, there's no place else I'd rather be. I love that I can talk to her about anything.
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