What is he really saying?

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-29-2007
What is he really saying?
Wed, 03-10-2010 - 3:22pm

I have posted here before about my trying to understand my husband and what he is really trying to say. I need some more insight in trying to understand what hubby is really trying to say.

Just to recap: We have been married 21 years. We have had lots of ups and downs in our relationship, neither of us has been perfect. The last low point was hubby's affair with an employee. That was over 4 years ago. I have come to the end of what I am willing to put up with. H says he enjoys my company and loves me but is not IN love with me. He is not interested in my sexually. (We have gone from an active sex life to once a year). He claims he does not want our marriage to end. He works lots of hours and I understand that he is exhausted and has little time for romance and to rebuild our marriage. But if he wanted to rebuild, he needs to make time for us. I ask for 5 minutes a day of "us time" and on the weekend we find some time to do something fun. H has clearly said he doesn't want the same relationship as I do, and doesn't have the energy to put into our marriage. He said "If I wanted a relationship like that it would be with you."

I recently told him, clearly and calmly that I want a loving relationship. I want someone who will think I am important enough to put the effort into a relationship. I told him I understood that he doesn't want the same relationship as me, and doesn't have the energy to put into this, and that was okay. I was ready to move on. I have listened to all the things he has said and I agree with him. Our marriage may be to damaged to save, no one is to blame, it is just time to move on. I told him I wasn't even angry any more, it is what it is.

At first he got angry, although he doesn't show it much. Then over the next day he started saying I love you and sitting next to me, and kissing me more often. Yet, I feel like he is just going through the motions, there really isn't any feeling behind it. If he said he wants companionship and that is all he can do, why is he acting this way? As far as I am concerned I am moving forward with the idea that we are splitting up. For financial reasons, we have to wait a bit. I am okay with that, he travels a lot so I don't really have to deal with him. Am I missing something? What I think is he likes having his house and having someone who runs the house and takes care of the kids. He doesn't want to lose that, I am just part of the package, kind of like the maid. Am I wrong?

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-18-2001
Wed, 03-10-2010 - 3:44pm

I think that you are exactly right.

If he's genuinely suffering from a lack libido then he doesn't feel he needs sex or intimacy in the same way that you do. IF he doesn't need that, then he has everything else he does need.

He has a woman to cook, clean, wash and organise for him. She looks after his house and children while he is away on business. The house is warm, clean and there is food on the table when he returns. There is a homelife and activity at home that he can choose to be involved with if he desires, if not it still goes on around him and provides the happy home environment that he enjoys.
If he does desire sex from time to time there is you for starters and he can toy with the employees if necessary.

Without you around, there is no warm family home. There is a cold apartment when he returns from business, he has to clean, cook, and organise everything himself. Without a family and wife any interactions he does have with the opposite sex take on a more serious aspect - he's not having an affair, he's forming a relationship - which can be more complicated in some ways.

And one area I haven't touched on is the financial - financially a divorce could be catastrophic for him.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-29-2007
Wed, 03-10-2010 - 4:24pm

I showed him the estimate of child support, and it is substantial. I am on unemployment and he has a really good salary that is continually going up. That news did not make him happy. Financially, a divorce right now would be devastating to both of us. I don't want to go into the whole thing, but I need to be able to hold out for another year. With all his traveling, I don't have to deal with him much. He works 60 - 80 hours a week, plus travel. The kids and I pretty much do our own thing and have for years. To separate, although it would be upsetting to the kids, it wouldn't change our day to day much. Plus the kids are older, almost 18 and 21. If I can work things out sooner, I can separate sooner than one year.

I do not think he still having an affair, although I could be wrong. At this point, it doesn't matter. He doesn't much seem to care about the marriage. He wants us to be companions, and we can each go out and do our own things. I told him I cannot live like that. He seems to think that he is some fantastic catch that I am madly in love with and will do anything to stay married to. Just because he can "say" I love you, that should be enough for me and I should just be happy with the crumbs he offers me. He thinks I am desperate. He should pay closer attention. I am actually looking forward to being alone. I am putting my life together the way I want it. Even though we still live together, I do not need to wait on him. I can give him what he wants, his own life. When finances are straightened out, then I can easily divorce. I am so ready to move on.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2008
Wed, 03-10-2010 - 11:08pm
No you are not wrong. It sounds like he wants to have you around to keep the home fires burning while he is gone most of the time. I would be very concerned that you went from an active sex life to once a year. My guess would be that he is getting it elsewhere, cause men very rarely go without sex for very long. And with all the traveling he does he has ample opportunity to do that. He may even be seeing the co worker still, or hooking up with women while on travel. Also when a spouse makes the specific comment "I love you, but I'm not in love with you" 9 times out of 10 it is because he is in love with or seeing someone else. He is no longer putting any effort into this marriage and I think you would be better off getting out if you can.
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-29-2007
Thu, 03-11-2010 - 10:28am
I have asked him if he is still seeing OW or someone else, he completely denies it. In an odd way, I believe him. There are some medical issues that have made sex difficult for him, but I have wondered if that is just an excuse. I don't even really care much any more. He has no idea how I feel, not because I haven't told him, he just chooses not to deal. He can only see how he feels and what he wants. If he is happy, then everyone must be. I think he is trying to hang on to the marriage so he doesn't have to deal with the emotions that come along with ending the relationship. He doesn't deal with emotions very well, actually he doesn't deal with them at all. Being a workaholic suits him just fine, its the excuse for not being a part of life.
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2008
Thu, 03-11-2010 - 3:39pm
Well when you get to the point where you don't even care much anymore I think it's time to go.
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-01-2006
Thu, 03-11-2010 - 7:59pm

He's saying that he's not in love with you, doesn't value the marriage, wants to be able to have his happy little home-life. Doesn't want any disruptions. Doesn't want to work at it, or meet you halfway with what you want in a marriage.

He's acting all lovey-dovey so you'll think that he's trying. But why is he bothering if he's already said that's not what he wants. He's afraid you're going to file for divorce and there goes his "happy" little life.

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