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Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC
Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5582
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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I am in a marriage that is basically loveless on my husbands

Resolved Question:

I am in a marriage that is basically loveless on my husband's part. He will not show affection nor will he join in on anything to do with our life-he is so closed off and when I try to speak to him about it he gets angry, walks away or just refuses to communicate. We are trying counseling but he feels trapped when he is there and gets very upset and angry if I try to continue talking about our issues after a counseling session. We have been together for 25 years and I am so tired of this same fight about how he refuses to be present in our marriage. Do you think it is time or past time for me to move on and be healthy and not feel empty & sad all the time?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC replied 2 years ago.

Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.

 

It sounds like you are doing all the work in your relationship and your husband spends his energy on being resistant to you and any changes you try to make. It is difficult to know how to react when the person you are with is refusing to do their part to work with you and improve the situation. It sounds almost like your husband is being emotionally abusive. He is refusing to meet your needs and is focused on himself. He continually hurts you and does not seem to care. By not trying to meet your needs, he is driving the marriage into the ground.

 

You have made a good effort to repair the marriage. Communication is one of the most important components in a marriage. If one partner is refusing to communicate, there is no basis for the relationship. Attempting to fix this by attending counseling is a very good option. But if your husband refuses to cooperate, then counseling cannot work. It takes someone who is willing to change for counseling to be effective. And so far, your husband is not willing to change.

 

Where you go from here depends on what more you feel you want to put into the marriage. If you want to keep trying, you can learn more about communication issues and give it another try with your husband. Here are some resources to help you:

 

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/anger-in-the-age-entitlement/201002/marriage-problems-how-communication-techniques-can-make-the

 

http://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage/communication_and_conflict/learning_to_communicate/when_your_spouse_wont_talk.aspx

 

http://psychcentral.com/lib/2011/marriage-communication-how-does-it-work/

 

If you both attend church, you may also benefit from talking with your pastor. Faith can help to heal a marriage where there once was no hope.

 

But if you feel that trying more with your husband will not work, you may want to consider a trial separation. By doing this, you can show your husband that you are serious about dealing with this issue. Separating also helps you both have time apart to decide how you want to proceed. Here is a link describing the benefits and issues with a trial separation:

 

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/contemplating-divorce/201004/can-marital-separation-make-your-marriage-better

 

Whatever you decide, you may want to consider counseling for yourself. You need support and someone to help you through, especially if you eventually need to divorce.

 

I hope this has helped you,
Kate

Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5582
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC
Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC
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Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.