You love your husband but you’re not happy anymore. Nothing feels worse than when you feel unhappy. And you still love him which makes it feel even more confusing.
Let’s understand more about why you are unhappy- with your spouse, your relationship, despite loving and perhaps still respecting your husband. Ask yourself, “When did you start becoming unhappy in this relationship? What changed?” Notice if it’s a scenario or an external situation that you can gain awareness about. Sometimes it might mean that you just need a little more self care.
Relationships have ups and downs, and things are not always going to be static. It’s important to know that your happiness is not dependent on others, otherwise it’s not “real” happiness.
What do you need to have a happy marriage and what can you do to bring that into your relationship?
There is a fallacy out there in society that if something doesn’t make you feel good, then you “should” move on to something else. People seem to think that if they are no longer happy in their marriage then they should just move on to someone else.
Ultimately, no one else will make you happy and you are likely to be unhappy in a future relationship. Marriage is a commitment, for good times and bad, for better or for worse. It’s not a life sentence to being miserable but it is something to be taken seriously and requires effort. And when you do put the effort into your marriage, you’ll discover a relationship that is far more fulfilling than anything else in the world.
We know that to be true based on the chemistry and science behind why you chose your spouse, why you were originally attracted to them is because they have precisely the things you are “missing” in yourself.
Here’s a video explaining what we mean by your spouse having your own missing pieces:
As you work through the conflict together and compel each other to grow, you’ll regain those missing parts of yourself and you will feel more whole and ultimately more happy.
More inspiration for the feeling of “I love him but I am not happy anymore”:
- Understanding the 3 relationship stages, which one are you in?
- “I love you but I’m not IN love with you”
- My wife has fallen out of love with me, how can I get her to love me again?
- When is it time to give up on marriage and get a divorce?
- Should we try a temporary separation?
- If you’re thinking about getting divorced, please read this
How Counseling & Communication Exercises Could Save Your Marriage
When you start putting in the effort to make your relationship one that you want, you will reap the rewards. Start focusing on the four critical transitions of your day and making those positive or by consistently sharing appreciations with your husband. You might just be surprised at how much happier you will feel in your marriage. Connect in fun little ways throughout the day and be sure to always flush out negativity and toxicity out of your relationship.
Love is a deep sense of caring for another person and grows with time by giving to each other and by spending time together. Even if you feel like you’re falling out of love, you can rebuild the love, and learn how to love your wife or love your husband again, and it can become more mature than the love you may have experienced before.
It’s common to feel like you are falling out of love.
You can read more about the stages of relationships and how common it is to fall out of love with your spouse.
We’re not advising you to be a doormat or completely selfless in your marriage all the time, just to know that staying happily married requires active participation in growing your relationship.
It’s important that you don’t make a decision to leave out of emotion. Feelings can change. One moment your gut tells you to stay, the next it tells you to go. Before choosing based on your emotions, you need to get help creating a safe environment through which to explore your issues, otherwise you’ll never know whether your conflict can actually be dealt with.
How do you know if you married the wrong person?
Are you up at night with the nagging feeling that you’ve married the wrong person?
You may have even been afraid to click on this post or type the title into the query search bar because it’s scary to think that after all of the pomp and circumstance of your wedding and all the commitment that you have invested into your spouse, having kids with them, that it could have been all for nothing if you married the wrong person!
Your spouse isn’t who you thought he/she would be. It was great when you were dating and first got married but at some point, things went downhill from there.
Sure, you have some great moments, some really positive ones, but the others are so nasty and those moments just outweigh the fun ones it seems!
What in the world are you going to do?
Like with everything else in the world, you have plenty of options. You can stay and be miserable, you can leave and also be miserable, you can try to get help- but none of it will be helpful until you understand what went on that got you into this in the first place!
Let’s talk a little bit more about what happened when things started going downhill and why you think you married the wrong person so that you can become more informed and go forward with whatever decision that you make with your eyes wide open.
Let’s first explore the good old days when everything felt fresh and new. What were some of the thoughts and feelings going through your mind at the time?
“I feel like I’ve always known you.”
“I feel one with everyone and everything.”
“With you I am complete.”
“I can’t live without you.”
This is what we call romantic love. And it’s not just thoughts and feelings, but chemicals flooding your brain such as dopamine, norepinephrine, and phenylethylamine. These love drugs give you an adrenaline rush, make you feel safe and fearless, and dull the pain receptors in your brain so you’re not focusing on your partner’s faults.
When we’re in romantic love, we think it will last forever. We seriously doubt we will be plagued by the same conflict that other couples are facing. Then comes the rude awakening which leads you to think that you married the wrong person.
See, romantic love feels great, but it is only meant to be transient. It’s what tricks us into getting married. Think of it as “nature’s anesthesia”. Without it you wouldn’t have gotten married.
Ask yourself. If you knew what you know now about your marriage and your spouse, would you have made a different choice?
The bottom line is that romantic love is what gets us to commit to spending our lives together.
But then reality sets in….
And you then officially enter the power struggle…
What happened to your marriage? How come it’s not like it used to be?
You are fighting more than not. You feel duped, like you made the wrong choice, like the person you thought you were marrying was a fraud. You thought you had the same values, the same goals and frankly you feel betrayed because now your partner doesn’t seem to hold those same values.
At this point, you may be feeling hopeless, like things will never get better, unless, of course, your partner changes. You may be contemplating divorce or deciding if you should stick it out until the kids leave the house. This is not what you thought you were getting yourself into.
The good news is that the power struggle is normal. In fact, it’s the way things are supposed to be and neither you nor your spouse is to blame.
While the power struggle spells an end for 50% couples, with the other 50% staying together as roommates, not soulmates, it doesn’t have to be this way.
That’s because the power struggle is also temporary, if you wake up to what’s really going on. The conflict you are experiencing is not random. Once you start to get conscious about the hot button issues in your marriage, you will clearly see that it’s tailor-made to address your own personal challenges.
For example, if you feel like your spouse doesn’t pay attention to you or often ignores you, and isn’t that interested in listening to what you have to say, you’ll probably discover that this is a familiar feeling. Perhaps, this is what you experienced growing up as a child. Whether or not it is true that your spouse doesn’t give you the attention you need, that is your experience and if it really bothers you, it’s partially what your spouse is doing, and mostly what it is evoking within you emotionally.
If you never received attention growing up, why on earth would you pick a spouse you doesn’t give it to you either?
Because marriage is the unfinished business of childhood. We are attracted to someone who will feel very familiar and will replicate our childhood so we can actually get it right this time. It’s almost like we have an opportunity to do over and repair those deep hurts with our loving partner. If it were only so easy…
The problem is we aren’t aware or conscious of what’s really going on. We know our spouse is causing us pain and we are hurt but we don’t make the connection. We focus on villianizing our spouse, criticizing him/her or pulling away. Once we realize that our spouse is merely pushing a button installed by our parents, we can transform the way we experience the conflict.
A Marriage Crisis Averted with A Simple yet Powerful Technique.
A few days ago I chanced upon a school picture of my son when he was five years old. Although he is only nine, he seems like a big boy and it is easy to get caught up in my frustrations with him that I forgot how he was just a baby not too long ago. When I saw that picture, I was aroused with compassion for that cute little guy and I was able to view my current relationship with him from a different perspective.
Apply my personal “walk down memory lane” exercise to your own marriage.
If you are in a bad space with your spouse, pull out your wedding album and remember the one you fell in love with.
Look at your spouse’s baby pictures and realize that your spouse was once a vulnerable little child. In fact, beneath that exterior which you may feel has caused you so much pain, hides that little child. Have compassion for his/her story and what it may have been like growing up. Begin to see your spouse and his/her behavior in a new light.
One of the powerful tools we teach couples in Step 4 (Acknowledge the Other) of our 5 step online marriage school, is to picture their spouse as a child. It helps us shift the marriage tension by gifting you with new-found compassion and empathy for your spouse. The new compassion and empathy that you now feel will help to enhance the connection that exists between the two of you-rekindling the flame, and helping you to answer your question of “how do I get my wife to love me again”.
Next time you are upset with your spouse, hold that picture in your mind’s eye of an innocent little one. Open your heart and witness the shift you experience.
It would benefit you to understand why you’re not happy and in love anymore. The FASTEST way to do that is in our 2 Day Marriage Restoration Retreat. Contact us about the retreat right here.
There’s nothing quite like the power of gaining clarity on a confusing situation. Complete the form below to talk with Rabbi Slatkin to see what he thinks would be best for you and your unique situation.