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Dear Debra
Dear Debra, Advice Columnist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1837
Experience:  I have been an Advice columnist for 14 years. My column is published weekly in local newpapers.
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I thought about what you wrote, but I also started to feel

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I thought about what you wrote, but I also started to feel like when he says he doesn't think this will work, why am I working so hard and not getting any response. I asked him if there was someone else, and he said no, but there is still something that isn't sitting rihgt. I dug a little, on our computer and I found some websites that he was visiting, and how to say, "you look beautiful" in russian. So this seems to be the missing link. Again, I deep down know you rpobably can't answer this, do I try for something that he doesn't want, and let my self get hurt for the next months or "cut bait and swim" Another part of this, about 5 months ago we started working on moving to Boston, it would be a better place for the kids and we thought us (we wouldn't have to travel and could be home together) since he said he doesn't think we can be together, he is till pushing to move to Boston. I said if we would go as a family and he truely thought we would be together, then I would go. But if not, I think it would be too much for the kids (new school, new friends, mom and dad living separate) He thinks it would be fine and still better for the kids if we were there.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
I think you both should still work on moving to Boston and I think it would be a new start for you both. Relationships go through stages and some times things happen that push people away. He is having doubts about whether things will work out so he needs to be reassured that things will work out and that you love him. That you want to start a new life with him in Boston. You both have dreams of moving there, this is a great step to see what you both are working for to come true. He might be nervous about doing this and he might need to know that this is what you want as well. Some times one thing said can put doubt in a relationship. One of those things is if one person whats something else in the relationship, some times the other feels they are being held back. But you are both working together to accomplish this goal of moving to Boston. But you have to work on this relationship and understand how he really feels and why he feels things will not work out. If you have any questions I am here to answer.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
His whole thing is that we are not connecting. I never felt that way and he doesn't understand how I could not have felt this way. Becasue he has been disengaged for so long. Our Intimacy level is zero and has been for almost 10 months. He never has been affectonate so I should have said something. But he always said he loved me, and wrote cards about how much more he loves me now than when we got married. And now when he finally says how unhappy he is, and I didn't know and what to "change" my behavorirs that I didn't know affected him, he has said it is too late. So is moving for "us" when he doesn't believe there can be an us the best thing to do for me and the kids?
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
He feels like you both have never connected in this relationship and what he is trying to say is he needs more from the relationship. He sounds like a person that needs to know how you feel. That he needs to be reassured about how much you love him. You said he is not an affectionate person and what that is wall protecting himself from getting hurt. I think it was him that was afraid to make this connection out of fear that you would leave him. Now he is overwhelmed with everything and all his emotions. He feels things will not work our, but you can repair this relationship by understanding why he feels the way he does. He has always said he loves you and wrote cards, but something happened that changed and that's what we need to figure out when this all started. Did something change in life that made him look at life differently/
Dear Debra, Advice Columnist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1837
Experience: I have been an Advice columnist for 14 years. My column is published weekly in local newpapers.
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.
not that I can see. We just stopped being a couple and became mom and dad. we were bickering, not fighting, every few months but that stopped, he said becasue he stopped engaging. I was frustrated becasue he came disengaged. I travel for work, so I am gone 1 night a week. I come home and he goes out with his friends and never invited me. I felt guilty traveling,a nd he is stuck trying to balance things at home, so when I get home and he wants to go I say go. He joined a triathalon club and is oding these, and he loves it, but doesn't invite me. He says he shouldn't have to invite me if what he was passionate about I should be the same. but I told him, you have these "events" and happy hours that you could have invited me to and then I would feel more connected ot go watch you race. But becasue you kept me out of the loop, to go stand at the finish line by myself, and you with "your group" wasn't something I wnted to inturde on your time and place, not that I didn't want to see you. side note I was on the computer today and was looking 9digging0 because seomthign felt missing/wrong and I found a webist he was looking up on how to say "you look beautiful"in russian.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
not that I can see. We just stopped being a couple and became mom and dad. we were bickering, not fighting, every few months but that stopped, he said becasue he stopped engaging. I was frustrated becasue he came disengaged. I travel for work, so I am gone 1 night a week. I come home and he goes out with his friends and never invited me. I felt guilty traveling,a nd he is stuck trying to balance things at home, so when I get home and he wants to go I say go. He joined a triathalon club and is oding these, and he loves it, but doesn't invite me. He says he shouldn't have to invite me if what he was passionate about I should be the same. but I told him, you have these "events" and happy hours that you could have invited me to and then I would feel more connected ot go watch you race. But becasue you kept me out of the loop, to go stand at the finish line by myself, and you with "your group" wasn't something I wnted to inturde on your time and place, not that I didn't want to see you. side note I was on the computer today and was looking 9digging0 because seomthign felt missing/wrong and I found a webist he was looking up on how to say "you look beautiful"in russian.
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
I don't feel that you should wait to be invited I think you should just go and watch a race. He feels you are not connecting then you need to show him that you are going to make the effort to reconnect with him. You both need to focus on what is lacking in the relationship. He has said that it's about connecting, so you need to show him that you both are connected. I understand that you are mom and dad. The relationship got put on hold to be parents which often happens. But you both need to make the time for each other. You need to see each other and look at how much you love each other. You built a life together, you are parents. You should start by placing one night a week aside for each other. Even if it's just sitting and talking. This relationship needs to get back on track. You both need to start over and find the love you both have for each other.
Dear Debra, Advice Columnist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1837
Experience: I have been an Advice columnist for 14 years. My column is published weekly in local newpapers.
Dear Debra and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I went to the race. He was surprised I was there. Thank you having me go. I stayed for a couple of hours and then left. One of the kids went with me and he kept asking to leave. After being there about an hour I said I would go and he said you don't have to leave. He told me all of the different things about the race and what was going on since I had never been to one. After the 2 nd hour I did leave. He text me " thanks for coming ". I know someone(me) has to make the effort but I feel like I am the only one. I ask about his day, I talk about his race, his swim, his bike ride, but he is not doing the same. He is keeping himself 10 feet back. Last week he made a comment he didn't want to give me the wrong impression. But he is. I went to take the kids for ice cream, and he texted me that we all could have gone later. He has never slept naked and all of a sudden he is. He has one foot in and one foot out. I am becoming protective of my self and saying what the heck is this and just end it all ready. I don't want to live in limbo I know it didn't get broken in a day and so it won't be fixed in a day. But at what point do I just stop. I don't want my kids hurt, or me. But living in this middle ground where he says and shows " this can't be fixed" attitude Is killing me.
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
Going to the race was the right idea, it was showing your support of something he likes to do. You made the time to show him how much you care about what he does and his interests. I think you both need to make time for each other. Right now the kids are the main focus, so you have very little time for each other. You going to the race was a huge step in the right direction. When he said about going for ice cream all together that was him saying will you wait for me so we can all go to be a family. I wonder if he feels like he is left out from things. This is why he has his own interests because he feels he had to do things for him because he felt not involved in your life. I feel he needs to be included all the time. I feel this relationship can work it needs to get back o where it use to be and that is making time for each other.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
We went back to the marriage counselor on Monday. All the things I have been doing he "appreciated" but didn't change the feelings(lack of) of connection. We finally. Talked about things that bothered us and yesterday texted back and forth continuing our communication on our feelings over time. We are going out together next week but what he says we are missing in connection, how do you get that back after 11 years of marriage. When you first start out you don't know each other and you are learning. I don't want to go to dinner and 1 -either talk about the kids or 2- cry.
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
You need to discover the spark that was once there. I understand when you first met you were learning about each other and now you know pretty much all there is to know. What you need to discover is each other in a new way. In eleven years you both grew together as a couple. But now you need to see the relationship in everything you have gone through. Your lives have became about other things and you lost sight of each other. That connection you once had in the beginning you were able to focus on each other. You learned about each other with no distractions. You need to get back to each other. When you went to the race you were showing him you are interested in something he loves to do. That is developing an interest and establishing a connection between each other. When you show interest it is something you can talk about that is new. You don't want to get emotional and think of what is happening as sad. You need to think positive creating no pressure on the relationship making it fun again like it once was.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
we are going out to dinner on Tuesday. Originally we were going to see the therapist before we were even going to be around each other (I went out of town for work he went out of town with one of the kids) and then back to the therapist. He texted me and said he thought we should cancel the therapist until we could go out on a date. This is the confusing stuff. He sends mixed messages. He says he doesn't want to but he says we shld wait til we can go out til we see the therapist, after the therapist, I was a mess after hearing that he didn't find me attractive and with my efforts, while appreciated, didn't change the lack of connection he felt, he said we were at least talking. We have great conversation, laughing and yet connection is not there...He was leaving on the trip and he leaned over and kissed me (it has been a long time since that happened) so is this him trying. That is what I take it as, but then (my thought is) that at the therapist he will say there is not connection. So I keep getting hurt taking his small gestures as posibilities.
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
I really feel like he is deeply in love with you, like more than you even know. But will not open up to show it. When he goes to the therapist he is guarding himself against his feelings, so he says negative things to not hurt you, but to mask how he feels. He is side tracking the attention away from himself. He doesn't want to get close to get hurt by you, but he need to realize that he need to open up and trust that this will last and you both can work this out together. You have both created a life and this relationship just needs open communication. I do not believe for one minute that he doesn't find you attractive. I think he feel you are perfect and can't measure up too you. I think he thinks your perfect and that he doesn't deserve you. I think he need reassurance that you love him and need him in your life.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
How/when will he realize that he needs to open up. I don't know how long I can keep being hurt with the end converstation being, that he feels no connection with me, not attracted to me, and doesn't think he ever will. We put the house on the market. If it to move to Boston or not is up to me getting a job. But if the house sells, and we move or not to Boston he is saying we move into 2 different houses. 1/2 of me doesn't want to sell the house becasue at least we are in the house together to try and work on things. If he moves to another place, how do you work on things...I keep saying I love him, and trying to show him by talking aobut things that are important to him (and not just becasue of that but becasue I know they are important I want to know more and be involved).
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
When you both move to Boston he wants you to move into your own house. I have a question. Does he want you to move to Boston with him as of right now or is he suggesting that you could stay where you are? You are up rooting your life to move to a new place and if you are on your own that will be very different or is he saying he is still going to be there for you? I really feel like you should move together because this is a new place a new life. You will both need each other starting in Boston again. This is something he wants to do is move well you were once in this plan to move with him. This is asking a lot of you to sell your house and move, but you are not allowed to live together. If you said you were not moving how would he react, I think his feels are so lost right now. He is focused on moving and starting a new life. But no matter where you live, you still have the same problems. Maybe he feels like you both would be better in Boston, a new start.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
The start of this whole thing the 1st thing he said was he didn't think our marriage could survive our moving to Boston. That was over a month ago. I said I didn't want to move to Boston unless we moved together snd he felt we were moving in the right/ better position for us to be together. He said to move to Boston would be better for the kids no matter what ( the kids play competitive hockey and living where we are we are on the road with one of them almost every weekend. Up north there is no/ a lot less travel on the weekend. So he said no matter what happens it is better to be up there for the kids. Again this is where I hurt / dont understand. He is already out the door. I want to work this out and think glass half full. Meaning now that I know how you feel we can work on things. And he is glass half empty. It can't be fixed but he is going to marriage therapy. Last year when we started looking into Boston I started looking for jobs up there and am in the final stages or the interviews. He is pushing to move I wonder the reasons why. Is it to start over ( during the begining of all this with the I don't think our marriage can survive a move talk he also said maybe Boston would be a new beginning ) ( here I go reading into/ hoping for the best). I have a lot of friends where we are, the kids have their friends, their school and if he dent think we will make it why put one more change in the kids lives. He is in Canada right now with one son and he texted me after a long run just to say that run hurt. Why text me little comments. I again read into this. I see this as a connection to him wanting to talk to me. He sees it as were friends and he texts his friends. We started off as friends and then it turned into more. That can happen but now he sees me as a friend and it can't be more because he is too upset with what has happened. I keep saying I didn't know it upset you/ bothered you/ hurt you. I can't read minds but he thinks if we were connected I would have known
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
You live very busy lives special with traveling for hockey. I think you both have to make time for each other in order to repair your relationship. I also think Boston will be a new beginning for you both. Testing you little comments is a great sign. I feel that your relationship at one point got put on hold. Maybe it was of your busy life. But you both lost sight of each other. The little comments is bringing you closer. He wants to talk too you and know you are there.
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
You live very busy lives special with traveling for hockey. I think you both have to make time for each other in order to repair your relationship. I also think Boston will be a new beginning for you both. Testing you little comments is a great sign. I feel that your relationship at one point got put on hold. Maybe it was of your busy life. But you both lost sight of each other. The little comments is bringing you closer. He wants to talk too you and know you are there. I think you will both work this out and get that fresh new start in a new place. Boston might make your life easier on travel so you can spend more time together.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for your advice. I hope it works out. Your thoughts and comments make me think and ponder...I sound like an idiot and I know that and these times will make anyone feel/ sound like that. Your comments, suggestions and ideas are greatly appreciated.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Weird question. . My husband has ADHD and I just read this thread/ article on marriage issues that sound exactly like mine. Have you heard or know of ADHD and marriage issues
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
Yes, this would have marriage issues. He is dealing with ADHD and it would effect also how he deal with issues in your marriage ADHD. This would effect the fact when it comes to really paying attention to the issues in your marriage. ADHD is something that you can lose focus, be easily distracted. I might only be able to deal with certain things one at a time in order to focus on his life. Right now he has a lot going on and his mind could be racing in many directions. He would have to stop and really focus on the issues and listen to you in order to really understand how you feel. He would need to be reminded how you felt all the time, reassurance and reconnecting at this point will help you both. It would be easier for him to lose focus, so he needs to stay focus on your relationship. If he is dealing with all these things he would have trouble focusing on your relationship right now. It could be overwhelming him right now.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I found this website that talks aobut marriage and ADHD and how the person with ADHD doesn't help with things around the house, so the other person feels like they have another child. I look back and this is so true. He said he didn't help with things around the house becasue he didn't want to be involved, but I look at the signals that ADHD has and it is because he would focus on other things so I had to cook, clean, laundry...and he sat and watched TV or sat on the computer. Over time, I would get mad because I would ask for help and he would say ok, in a minute or tomorrow and never do anything. Also it talks aobut sex and the relationship that 1 the person with ADHD has sensory over load so to hold hands or just touching in any sense was too much. Many times in the car with him and the kids they would have computer had games on and then the radio would be on and the 2/3(talking) different sounds was too much for him to handle. The article said relationships struggle because the ADHD person gets easily board and goes into finding porn to keep them focused/not bored and he did (maybe still does) do that. Finding all this info makes me feel like it is not my fault (and i had a lot of guilt and still do on what I could have done to not let this happen) but I see with these artilcles where I probably didn't know I was mad at having to do everything around the house, but gave off that vibe and he retreated. I don't think it will fix anything but there is a lot of clarity. I am taking both kids out of town to a hockey tournament this weekend. He has nothing planned, but he said he has to run for a race he has coming up in 4 weeks and since the games the kids have dont conflict, he will just stay home and run. (the tournament is 2 hours away so it isn't like he can't come up there and run or come up for part and go back) also the next weekend I have 1 of the kids at a trounament (the last one) and he wants me to get babysitters and sleepovers for the little on so he can go running. He says he care about the kids but he isn't showing it. And it is hurting the kids wondering why he isn't there.
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
You should never feel like this is your fault. There are two people in this relationship and relationships are not perfect. They take work to understand each other needs. Right now he is doing the things he wants to do like focus on running. This is something that is making him feel better. But because of this it appears he is not showing how much he cares about the kids. ADHD has effected your relationship and knowing how to deal with this will help in your relationship. What you have read gives you clarity of that things you thought were your fault are not. But you should have never felt that way. He needs to reconnect in this relationship, right now I feel he is finding himself. But you are part of his life and he also needs to focus on you and the kids as well. Continue to show interest in what he is doing because he is making himself feel better which in return will reconnect you both. If he is happy with himself, he will realize that what he has is all he ever needed. It's not about you and he can blame you, but it's about him finding himself. He wasn't happy in his life. He is trying to be a better person. Once he finds his place, he will work on you and him reconnecting.
Dear Debra, Advice Columnist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1837
Experience: I have been an Advice columnist for 14 years. My column is published weekly in local newpapers.
Dear Debra and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Maybe one more thing/question. Last night we went on a "date" dinner and just us. Still talked and nothing different than before, what I thought was ok. We get home and he goes to the computer, and tv. He was planning on coming with me and the kids to watch their hockey tournament this weekend, but decided he might want to stay home and go running and biking instead of being together. I feel like this is a slap int he face. You have the opportunity to be togteher and you choose not to. But he might want to come to see the kids play. I feel like saying if you come, and stay with me in the hotel, you need to come because you are hopefull of us. If not then don't come. Is that being to brash, and asking for him to make some sort of commitment to trying. How long to I live in limbo. He says he doesn't want to be with me, no feelings. We still have a joint checking and savings account, and I make 2 times as much money, and he went out 3 days after he first told me he does love me and bought a $7000 triathlon bike he wanted, and now he is going tob uy a bike rack, $500. So is he hanging in there for the $$$ or am I just hurt. I don't care about the money, but at the same point if he doesn't want to be iwth me, i need to plan for the future for my kids.
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 3 years ago.
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Dear Debra
Dear Debra
Advice Columnist
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I have been an Advice columnist for 14 years. My column is published weekly in local newpapers.