Hi, I can be of help to you today.
are you there
It is quite common for a relationship to grow apart especially when years go by and communication between couples becomes more focused on things other than their relationship. Marriage counseling is your best bet but it will be tough to get her to go.
How did you handle the situation last night? What did you do if anything?
At first I tried to be supportive and console her but I'll admit that I was quite shocked to hear her speak that way about me and my son. I could have handled it better but it was quite concerning. She felt I was getting angry and from that point there wasn't much I could do. I was able to express to her that I wasn't angry but rather concerned, that I love her and have no intention of leaving and that I want us to work through this together. That there is nothing I can do on my own, however.
It will be very important to work together in regards XXXXX XXXXX your son right now. If he is presenting significant problems you need to put your own relationship aside and get on the same page or as you suggest in your post your parenting will have negative outcomes. Her silence in regards XXXXX XXXXX help really is her saying she isn't feeling as positive about a change in your relationship. She may have given up, especially if you are both unhappy. What happened last night may be just the way she views your behavior, as angry. When she is calmer, when everyone is calmer you may want to sit down and tell her how important it is to either go to counseling or have the marriage deteriorate even more.
You are role models for these children and what is happening is affecting them, they see it. You could even suggest family therapy as a way to start getting things back on track. It would be helpful for your son especially if he is presenting challenges (which at his age is normal to a degree)
Is it your view that dealing with our marriage issues now, while dealing with my son, would not be recommended?
No, not at all. You can deal with it all but most importantly the two of you need to put aside your own differences when dealing with him, you can work on both and if you find success in working together on issues that involve your son you will find success in dealing with your other issues. The main thing is being committed to a solution. That is why family therapy might be a big help right now. You concern shows that you are committed to the marriage now you have to convince her that you want only the best for both of you. If she doesn't want to go to counseling with you, family therapy may be more appealing to her since it involves the children.
Also, there is another important issue. I work in the home. My office is on the third floor where we have another spare bedroom. I use it when I get sick because my snoring keeps her up. I've been staying there nearly full time since I had surgery on 10/7/10. She brought this up as an issue. I would have to admit that I've been staying there selfishly because it is better for me to deal with our relationship when I have my own place to sleep. I've asked her to work with me on solving our problems and her silence or refusal has caused me to want to stay up there hoping that perhaps she might reconsider so that we can improve things. A way of adding pressure. Perhaps this is not a good approach and I should consider trying to go back to our room. The problem is that whenever I'm not there, she lets my middle daughter sleep there. So even if I wanted to sometimes, to do that, I'd have to wake her up and move her. To date, i've not been willing to do that.
I agree this is not the best approach to solving your problems, however, neither is her silence. I would suggest you go back to your bedroom, let it be known, tell your wife you will be coming to bed back in your room so your daughter isn't an excuse or an issue. You are both using non-verbal negative communication. You need to ask what she needs, and what she is feeling, and what she wants from this realtionship, and you should tell her your feelings, and what you need from her. That is basic and necessary.
I'm not sure I even feel capable of telling her what I need. If I had to say it now I'd say I need to feel that she loves me. Right now, I don't see that. She would say the same. I think we need help breaking this down to simple small steps we can take to at least get us on the road to recovery.
All of that assumes she wants us to recover. I get the sense that she doesn't think it is possible to recover but that doesn't necessarily mean she doesn't want recovery.
How do I find out if she even wants that. I asked her directly last night and she didn't answer.
What do I do if she says no?
If she didn't answer she is again using non verbal communication and it's possible she is either afraid to tell you or doesn't know. Instead of asking as a question make a statement something, like " I know we are having a tough time in our relationship right now and I'd like to make it better and if you are onboard we can work on it" . Don't ask for an answer, let it sink in and give her time to respond. If you make statements rather than questions she won't be so defensive. If she still refuses to engage in a conversation after awhile then you may conclude she isn't and go from there.
She may be depressed too.
If she is depressed, how does that affect what I do?
It might be useful to know that I have had bouts of depression, the last one about a year ago was quite deep and long lasting. I spoke with my MD about this summer during a physical and he said that the next time, we should intervene with medication.
I have no idea if it is related to our relationship or not.
If she is depressed she needs to get some help, if she doesn't want to go see a doctor and get evaluated for depression that is her choice and she will have to live with it until she decides to make the changes. However, If you have been in this state yourself you know how paralyzing it can become and how you can become "flat" and silent. Best thing is to tell her you are going to get some professional help and you'd like it if she did too. It may be depression affecting both of you which in turn is affecting your family and your lives in general. It's impossible to diagnose from this site, you need to take it to a higher level by seeking out a professional face to face evaluation.
Who do you go to for medical evaluation about depression? Family Doctor, Psycologist, some other specialty?
I would suggest you start with your family doctor who can then refer you to a psychiartrist for medication and/or psychologist for therapy. If your family MD has prescribed a medication for you successfully before he may be able to do it again. I prefer a psychiatrist since they are up to date on new effective antidepressants.
Ok, Thanks very much for your help today