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mindhealer
mindhealer, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 693
Experience:  Licensed in MD and am also a Board Certified Diplomate (Advanced Practioner) I have over 10 years experience
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My husband and I have been married 10 years. We married rather

Resolved Question:

My husband and I have been married 10 years. We married rather late in life (39 and 41) We have always been best friends and married hoping the "romance deficit" that we experienced would change and we would feel more "in love" as time went on. Although I had had many relationships before we married where I have certainly felt those feelings, my husband never has--either before or with me. I believe his lack of emotional connectiveness comes from the way he grew up. I miss feeling emotionally and physically intimate, but he doesn't miss what he has never had. Now he is starting to talk divorce because he says he doesn't want to let me down anymore. I still feel there is potential for more in our relationship, but cannot seem to convey to him what a true partnership can be when he's never experienced it. Is there anything left for me to try? (We have tried counseling but that has not helped).
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  mindhealer replied 3 years ago.
Good afternoon and thank you for the opportunity to help in answering your question. Based on the information you've kindly provided it sounds as though you and your husband truly care for one another and my initial impression is that you would both be willing to work on the issues you noted. My thought is that the marriage counseling didn't work due to your husband not necessarily seeing a problem which may have made him defensive.

My first suggestion would be to speak to your husband about the possibility of attending individual therapy for him alone. The reason I suggested this is due to a stunted emotional growth your husband appears to be exhibiting. My thought is that if he can work through his own problems then he would be more available emotionally to work on the problems you identified in the marriage.

I would also urge you to consider seeing a therapist individually as well. I suggest this to help you gain a better understanding of both yourself and to get an objective view on your husband.

If he is not receptive I would still suggest that you see a therapist that way if you both decide to try a separation you'll have a therapist in place to help you through the resulting difficulties and emotional strain that will likely follow.

I sincerely XXXXX XXXXX I've helped in answering your question and that you found my suggestions to be of benefit.

Please let me know if you have any further questions as I want to ensure your question is completely and thoroughly answered.

If you feel I've answered your question to your satisfaction I would sincerely XXXXX XXXXX clicking the ACCEPT button thereby giving me credit for the answer. I hope this finds you well and look forward to your response.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for your quick and helpful response! Actually, I am already seeing a therapist myself. My husband is not very open to seeing a therapist on his own, mostly due to what i believe is a fear of being like his father (his dad is bipolar). He is also exhibiting hair pulling and skin picking symptoms, which he attributes to his stress over our marriage. How can I get him to seek help? I also agree that if he would face his childhood trauma (basically becoming the "man of the household" at age 12 when his father became ill), we would be able to have a chance at a true connection. I think he is afraid to face those feelings and deal with them. My therapist has agreed to see him on an individual basis--any thoughts as to how I can help him?
Expert:  mindhealer replied 3 years ago.
Thank you very much for your reply and additional information. The hair pulling and skin picking are actually characteristics of an anxiety disorder, specifically called trichtotillomania. It's also evident that this sounds to be more trauma based than a bipolar disorder. I can appreciate your husband's hesitation as its a difficult endeavor to confront our fears.

I think if you continue to encourage him and letting him that you would be there with him, supporting him along each step of his treatment and that by going through therapy it may very well save your marriage I think he'd be more receptive. I'd also discourage your therapist from seeing him individually for two reasons. First it could get confusing and second he would really benefit from seeing a trauma specialist. If you call you health insurance provider they should be able to provide a referral for this type of specialist. You can also consider showing him this question and the answers I've provided which would demonstrate that you really want him to get help so that he can start to heal and so that you work toward staying together.

I hope this helped and please let me know if you have any further questions before clicking the ACCEPT button. I hope this finds you well.
mindhealer, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 693
Experience: Licensed in MD and am also a Board Certified Diplomate (Advanced Practioner) I have over 10 years experience
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