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Dr. Rossi
Dr. Rossi, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 4627
Experience:  PsyD, LPC, CHt
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My wife says she needs some space I love my wife I want to

Resolved Question:

My wife says she needs some space I love my wife I want to give her space but I'm afraid if I do I will lose her forever. Not only will this devastate me but I think it will have a huge impact on our children because I'm the primary child caretaker because of all the hours she and the shift she works. She thinks babysitters and shuffling them around won't affect them with answers like people do it everyday. What should I do. One issue I'm really having is I moved to this state to be with her my family and support system is 2000 miles away and if we are not together as a family I'm moving but she doesn't want me to do that.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Rossi replied 5 years ago.


Did she give you a reason as to why she needs this time?

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
She says she not happy I do everything I can for my family and to be honest I haven't been the happiest either but I just don't want to walk away from our family and we have a 6 yr and 4 yr old and our six year old she talks about family quite a bit I can tell already how having our family intact means to her.
Expert:  Dr. Rossi replied 5 years ago.

Thank you for clarifying.

If she's asking for some time from you, try to have her tell you how long is she talking about? A few weeks, a couple of months, etc. and what exactly would she be doing during this time - go to counseling, engage in self introspection, and so on.

It would be helpful if she is able to let you know what is she expecting from you during this period of time.

Her unhappiness does not have to be related to the marriage or you. It could be a case of early mid life crisis, feeling depressed and projecting that onto you, feeling unfulfilled in her life and thinking that she's missing something.

You could ask her if she may be interested in couple's counseling or if she's thinking of working on these issues (whatever they are if she knows ) on her own.

You can honor her wish for time and she'd need to be specific about how this time will be used. If you resist, she may use that against you and blame you for her "unhappiness" And, you can speak to her and ask her to think of how this is going to effect the children as well in the long run.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I did that she says she doesn't know, she says there is no one else which I believe, she says if we're meant to be together its gonna happen. My big issue is if we are not together I'm moving out of state she really has no one to help with the children I've tryed to discuss some of these issues with her she says she'll figure it out. I'm the primary caretaker of the children she works third shift and a lot of hours. With these answers I'm getting just as unhappy as she is my family says leave and let her see that the grass is not greener on the other side, I don't think that's the answer plus I don't want her to resent me for packing up and moving away. I do love her and want to be with her forever and wish our marriage can make it over this bump. So I guess that is the answer I'm more looking for what should I do?
Expert:  Dr. Rossi replied 5 years ago.

You could ask her to work on this together in therapy or with a relationship coach. Needing space does not really have to mean spending time apart (unless your work or other obligations require it) To have time to herself it could mean that she is putting some time aside i.e. an hour or two a week to speak with a therapist, to talk to someone trusted i.e. minister or a friend and sort things out. If she feels depressed rather than unhappy (some people confuse the two) she could meet with a clinician to explore different treatment options. If she thinks that there is something else that she wants out of life, perhaps it has nothing to do with the marriage stopping her from getting it but rather her own self defeating thinking.

If you're taking care of the children, you would not leave her and go miles away. Having space could mean that she is not looking for sexual intimacy or that she wants to spend some time out of the house. These are things that she can explore and you can help her re-evaluate what other options she can resort to in order to "figure out" what is it she thinks she's working on.

It may be possible that if she looks at things from another perspective she can still work on her issues without the two of you being physically apart miles away.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I understand I just think its selfish of her to put our children through this when we don't have a verbal or physically abusive relationship. I just don't want to start to resent her I love her. But I do understand your answer clearly.
Expert:  Dr. Rossi replied 5 years ago.
it seems selfish and she may not be able to see it from that objective angle being all consumed with her own emotions. Your love won't let you resent her. She sounds confused from what you've shared - her telling you that she's not sure exactly what is it she's seeking/wanting. Couples have mutual as well as their own individual goals. She may have developed new ones for herself but she has to talk to you about expectations from the marriage since you can't be guessing what is it that she desires. After her own soul search, the two of you as a team can re-evaluate the marital goals and see if there are any discrepancies b/w personal and individual goals, and how these will be addressed/managed. Running away is a defense mechanism and a solution won't manifest just because she is going to be in a different proximity from you.
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