How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask psychlady Your Own Question
psychlady, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 6893
Experience:  Psychotherapist specializing in the treatment of a variety of mental health issues.
Type Your Mental Health Question Here...
psychlady is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My 'boyfriend' and I dated four years when we became

Customer Question

My 'boyfriend' and I dated four years when we became pregnant.  We quickly decided to marry, combining families. We are 3 years into our marriage with all our children grown except our 3 yr old son. While we have known from our beginning that we are different in many ways we are both committed to giving our son a loving family. I believe that without our child we would not stay married, although we are friendly and courteous and generous towards one another. Some days I want to split but I continue because we have our child. And, I believe the same is true for my husband. How do I keep from getting discouraged? I want to do the right thing for our child.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  psychlady replied 6 years ago.

Sorry for the delay; I could not get online. It is wonderful that you are both devoted to your child but that is not enough to keep a relationship going. A relationship has to have more than shared parenting. What could happen is that time will pass and you will again find the relationship lacking. At what point do you have a relationship based on passive acceptance. I am happy for you if you want to stay married for the right reasons. Also consider that passion leaves and a relationship becomes comfortable in all cases. But if it is all about your son you may become resentful. It is better that a child grow up in a house with two happy partners. If that is not possible then it is better with one happy person. You have to decide if you are HAPPY. If not you owe it to yourself to decide how to be happy.

If this has been helpful press accept

psychlady, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 6893
Experience: Psychotherapist specializing in the treatment of a variety of mental health issues.
psychlady and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Sorry for the delay; the holiday weekend kept me busy. While I appreciate the time involved in responding to my question, it is my perception that my answer came from a perspective of me still deciding if I'm doing what I believe is good for our child. I agree two happy parents are best and one happy is good also. My need for advice involves ways to keep from getting discouraged. It could not be truer that I owe it to myself to be happy; i'm looking for tools to create and maintain greater happiness within the boundaries of my marriage and family life. I feel the response I was given is a bit watered down and vague. I shall seek a different forum for my needs. I did not realize the limits of this forum when I reached out here for assistance.
Expert:  Dr. Michael replied 6 years ago.
Hello. I believe I can be of help to you with this issue.

There are few actual limits for you to find some personal happiness in a marriage you do not want, with the exception that you and your husband would probably not condone either of your forming an emotionally intimate or sexual relationship with someone else, while you are married. If this is really the only limit, then you can honestly ask the question, "What activities, relationships or other forms of COMPENSATION do I feel I need in order to stay in this relationship. For some spouses, this means reaching an agreement to set aside more money for individual travel, so for example, you'd spend more time away visiting friends, family or 'places' you want to visit, that you'd feel 'make up' for the lack of emotional or sexual passion in your marriage. Also, it is possible to reach agreements about living some aspect of your life together more independently in terms of developing YOUR hobbies, interests, taking adult enrichment classes, pursuing a new vocational or degree program. It might involve pursuing aesthetic 'needs' you have such as going to community theatre, or getting away with 'the girls' for a weekend at an opera. The point I'm making is that in addition to feeling that you've not had the emotional 'something' you've wanted in your marriage, you can ease your frustrations by carefully studying your PAST interests, hobbies, intellectual interests and relationships and reactivating these more; or making some strategic decisions about new plans you can look forward to. If these were programmed into say a given one year timespan,and you had them planned and could anticipate them, it can take the edge off of the personal loneliness you feel. It won't eliminate it because only being single or having another romantic interest in your life can compensate for that---and again, I'm assuming this is something you and your husband mutually agree is forbidden and 'off limits'. I would NOT get involved in adult friendship or 'dating' sites of any kind because this will lead to having an affair, especially when your marriage hits its next rough spot---at least the risk will be high at these times. Finally, it might help to make actual, personal plans for living a separate single life after a certain date---perhaps it is the day your child goes off to college or moves away from home to take a job, or becomes engaged. To have clear fantasies and plans you have in mind, after you have fulfilled your childrearing obligation to your child, can help you feel that your present life isn't emotionally, a bit of dead end---there would be light at the end of the tunnel so to speak, with such post-child-rearing personal plans to live a separate life. If you were serious about planning leaving the relationship, it might help to start making concrete plans of sorts right now e.g., putting away some money with a parent in a personal savings account to help fund a move somewhere or help pay for legal advice. The other thing that can help is to specifically focus on the one or two major ways you value your husband---maybe there is one joint activity you do like to do together. An emphasis on spending time you schedule doing this can help make passage through the months and years of a marriage one doesn't want a bit more palatable. I know of a couple who had nothing in common and didn't enjoys their marriage, but both of them like going sailing; so they planned on doing that once per month for most of the year. It certainly didn't fix the relationship nor did it make the marriage a happy one, but it made living together and cooperating toward a common goal---raising their kids, more palatable. What do you think?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I think your words are more inline of what I'm seeking and I thank you for your response. I will explore these ideas in my relationship with my husband. Your advice with regard to adult friendship and dating sites is spot on, as is pursuing separate interests mixed with common interests. Making concrete plans for a separate future also is good sense. Thank you.
Expert:  Dr. Michael replied 6 years ago.
My best wishes to you in finding greater happiness in a marriage that isn't truly suited to your emotional needs................
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
It 's my understanding that I have already paid for my answer. Please explain why additional payments are requested.
Expert:  Dr. Michael replied 6 years ago.
I'm not sure who is requesting an additional payment. If this is the only question you have submitted for an answer, just ignore the requests for payment. You have indeed, accepted my question and it has been paid for. If you have additional money on deposit, you can ask to have it returned to you and the staff will comply. Best wishes.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Expert:  Dr. Michael replied 6 years ago.
Best of luck....
Expert:  Dr. Michael replied 6 years ago.
My customer roster shows that this question has been 'timed out'. If you would like to provide a response to my last post, please feel free to do so. Alternatively, please hit the green Accept button at the bottom of this screen so I may receive credit for answering this question. Thanks.