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What's wrong with me?!


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For about a year I have been in ambivalence over my marriage. My wife is a wonderful woman and yet there is something that doesn't feel right in me. We have tried trial separations to see if that helps, and even decided to legally separate and go our own ways with a view to divorce in the future. OK, here is the bit I just don't understand and want to know if anyone else has experienced it. When my wife is leaving my life I feel completely broken and just want her back, yet when she is back I feel very trapped and want to separate again!! The trial separations were ok, because I knew she was at the end of the phone and was not gone forever. She doesn't deserve this but loves me very much and wants to help in any way she can. Despite the above, I do treat her very well when together and love her. Please don't condemn me for I am a very good man despite the emotional rollercoaster. And yes, I am very much aware of how my wife must be feeling! Tried counselling but it wasn't a great deal of help.

Again I ask, has anyone experienced anything similar or have any ideas or views. Thanks for reading.

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Well your gonna have to look deep inside yourself... look at your past...

your family situation.


You seem to be dependant on her... but yet when she is there you feel another way.


Whatever the problem is, it lies deep within you, and you have to find it in order to understand the way you feel.


hopefully this helps a little bit

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It sounds to me like you feel like she is controlling you when you're together. I think you are experiencing a control issue... perhaps a battle for control between the two of you.


Do you have any outside interests or friends that you hang out with, without her? Do you possess anything/skills, etc. that don't have anything to do with her and that keep you separate from her, that define your individuality? Things that make you feel like you're accomplishing something?


It has been my experience with men that if they don't feel like a man they are unhappy..... what I mean is, if their woman breaks their spirit in any way, or tries to keep control all the time, the man feels claustrophobic and like he needs to "show her who wears the pants" by going out with the guys and getting plastered just because he CAN, going to a strip club, or on a fishing trip just because he CAN and to show her all that, blah blah blah, yada yada yada, you get the point. This approach only leads to contempt.


Ways to instill more control in your marriage (if this is what you think it is) is to start doing things without her asking you to do them, or without her expecting you to do them. Help out around the house, do tasks that she normally does, fix things for her, make monetary decisions and make decisions in everyday tasks and outings. Tell her this is what you've decided, what does she think? In other words, use tact, not the barbaric grab-the-woman-by-the-hair approach. This won't work unless she lets you, though, and that is the problem usually.


If you dont' think it's that, then you possibly just aren't in love with her but are afraid to admit it because of guilt, family commitments, relatives points of views, etc. Perhaps you were in love with her before but she just doesn't do it for you anymore.


I would suggest a different therapist. Usually female therapists are better and are easier to talk to. I have been to several and this is only my experience. Even if it doesn't save your marriage, if you get a good one, it will at least help you figure out yourself.

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When I read this post, I thought "gee, I could have wrote that." It is exactly what I am going through, except I'm female. My husband and I separated -again- last week and this past week has been extremely tough. I am asking myself the same question - why? (my idea)


I do have an answer for you about why you miss her when she's gone. You are comfortable around her, you are used to her being around...but do you really want her around because she's a great person and you love her or do you want her around so you won't be lonely? I can't answer that for you, but I think for me it is the latter.


The only advice I have is to surround yourself with friends and activities to get your mind off of her. I'm personally not in therapy, trying to handle this on my own with my friends and a few beers in between. Arguably that is not the best approach to save a marriage, but I'm not sure if that is my goal. However, if that is your goal then I wouldn't necessarily recommend the same thing!


I guess what you have to decide is do you want this to work or not. I know a lot of married couples and almost all of them have their hard times. If you love each other and there is no one else in the picture, you can do it if you stay focused. For me, I don't know what will ultimately happen but one thing I do know...I am not happy as-is and I refuse to keep living a lie. We will not have the kind of relationship I want.


I'm so glad there is someone else out there going through what I am going through. I'm not sure if my advice is all that helpful, but please know that you are not alone.

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  • 1 month later...

Well I feel better that it's not only me that seems to be going through it, but there are others, then i think it's sad as you probably feel like me.

My wife and me have had a number of rows recently and our relationship is just going downhill rapidly.

She has now mentioned a trial seperation for 1-3 months. Part of me thinks it's a good idea then a i searched the web and found out only 10% survive a trial and now i'm like feeling worse. What makes it doubly hard is we have 2 kids and it tears me up to think I won't be there as much as i have been for the past 9 years.

My wife did say I could still take them to their clubs/school etc. But on reflection I think, well it won't be a seperation but me having to dart accross town to help her. I realise they are my kids and I am probably contradicting myself, but if I'm no longer in the house then I have to get a life for myself.

Thoroughly confused and trying not to feel sorry for myself.

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