I feel like my marriage is failing

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
I feel like my marriage is failing
1
Tue, 05-13-2003 - 12:18pm
I've been married for almost a year now and we have a 6 month old daughter. Lately I feel like my marriage is failing. My dh feels like I don't love him anymore and that I don't like to have sex with him anymore. None of this is true. He feels like I'm not affectionate which is true. He doesn't understand that I'm home with the baby all day and when she goes to sleep I just want to relax. He drinks sometimes and occassionally he drinks alot. This is something I have a big problem with and does contribute to the lack of affection sometimes. I've tried talking to him about it but he just shrugs at whatever I say. I can forget about counselling because he'd never go. I just don't know what to do. I've been trying to be more affectionate but he doesn't seem to care. What can I do to make this better. I don't want my marriage to end.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Tue, 05-13-2003 - 6:04pm
I can see how difficult this is for you, to have the work of caring for a baby and the stress of a troubled relationship.

It's really hard that he doesn't want to talk about things. I would not give up on that yet. Do you two talk about this only when things have already gotten heated or either of you is already upset? Generally, it is better to talk about things calmly and logically. Otherwise, feelings of defensiveness, etc will get in the way. Maybe you can hire a baby sitter for just one evening so you two have some time alone to enjoy each other's company, and to talk about this in a neutral way. Then you can bring it up by saying, "you know, I really enjoy spending this time with you. Usually I am so tired taking care of the baby and everything that I feel I just don't have any energy to do anything but just sleep! Maybe we could do this more often if we hired a babysitter once a week. Then we could have time for just the two of us..." Don't accuse him of anything, just state the facts, how you feel, and stay very positive about the whole thing.

The other thing is, remember that you can be affectionate even if you do not have sex. Being affectionate can be as simple as sitting next to him and sharing with him the fact that you are tired, or that the baby did this today, or to listen to him talk about his day. Or you two could do something with the baby; take a walk, etc. You don't necessarily have to be physically intimate to let someone know that you care about them. You can just hold hands, kiss, or incorporate him into some of your baby tasks by making him help you, but do it in a way that allows all three of you to bond and be affectionate. It might be that some part of him is a little jealous of all the attention the baby is getting.

But don't be too hard on yourself, either. It sounds like you have tried to reach out to him, and you have hit a brick wall. You shouldn't bend over backwards to please him by any means. And certainly you should never do anything that you don't want to do.

I would just try to reopen the lines of communication. But ultimately, its a two person job, and it sounds like he needs to get realistic and either help out with the baby or be more understanding about where you are coming from, and not so demanding of your affection.