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How to communicate to my wife

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I'm a first time poster here and I'm a desperate husband trying to figure out how to communicate to my wife. I'm having the following issues with my wife below:


1) A school reunion is coming up (100 year anniversary) and It was my favorite school. I had a lot of friends and was very popular there and I loved that school. It would mean the world to me if my wife and daughter would come with me (because I'm proud of my family) but my wife is dead-set against it. I was begging her and she says I'm bullying her to go. She said she is saying no to look after herself because she's under too much stress already working full time as a teacher. I feel incomplete without them coming. My wife feels too many people have high expectations of her and I understand and don't expect her to do a lot, but this is important to me. I don't know what to do.


2) We can't agree on how to raise our daughter. My daughter wakes up too early in the morning (she's 2 1/2 years old) and I'm trying to avoid her playing and trying to put her back a sleep. The problem is my wife intervenes and my daughter knows my wife will come if she calls her "Mommy!". I told my wife that we need to be on the same page because my daughter knows she'll get her way with her mom. I also told her she needs to stop contradicting me in front of our daughter but my wife says "too bad!". We were trying for a second now I told her I fear to have another if my wife does not agree with me in front of the kids. My wife eventually said she let's me "do my thing" with my daughter before my wife intervenes (which is usually 1 minute max.).


I need to know even if she's right so that I can adjust myself. However, I also tend to feel isolated at times and want to be apart of my family more. Help!

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I think you really are communicating quite clearly to her. Did something else happen recently that has made her not want to be on your side of things? Has she always been this way? Something does not seem right at ALL.


I mean, when I was a full time teacher, I also was working P/T and preparing for a show. And now I work run three companies, have a 9 month old, and married to an awesome guy, and we still go on weekend trips, and a big one to Hawaii two months ago.


Does she have anxiety issues, or cannot handle stress? Did she go to that school too, and perhaps had a bad experience there. Something doesn't add up. It's not about communication here. It's her being closed off to you.

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To be honest, you are not being unfair I have been with my bf for like 7 months now and I support with anything he wants to do. She's your wife she should be supporting you and vice a versa that's a part of marriage. I can understand that she is probably stressed out from work but there is solutions for that e.g. a pamper night, nice bath and relax. Instead of trying to force her to go, say to her I would love for you and our daughter to come as you are my family and to support me. Maybe she has low self esteem and you need to reassure her, all you have to do is say hi im not asking for much.


Your daughter is only 2 and half she shouldn't be getting her own way, you are the parents and need to set some discipline for her. if she knows your wife will come everytime she cries or moans she's not learning and she's not learning to self sooth. You two need to work together not constantly fight with each other especially infront of your daughter because it isn't setting a good example and nothing isn't getting done. To be honest I think that you need to work on your relationship, spends some time together without arguing it would be good for you both.

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  • 2 weeks later...

You are not being unrealistic whatsoever. It is important in a marriage that you both feel the need to fulfill each other's needs. You want to go to your reunion and the fact that is so important to you should mean something to your wife. Have you expressed to her how much it would mean to you if she did go? Have you told her that you understand why she feels the way she does but that it would mean a lot to you if she attended it with you. Maybe if she knew that you could reach a middle ground and maybe do something she has been wanting to do also.


As for the conflicting parenting strategies, my husband is a behavioral therapist working in children's homes and the first and foremost thing he teaches these families is how important consistency is in parenting. It is very important that husband and wife learn to agree on parenting strategies and follow through with them, as well as respectfully acknowledging each other in front of the children. This is something my husband stresses above anything else, so maybe if you were to tell her that you really want to work towards achieving a healthy, consistent environment for your children from that angle it might help? I'm sure there are many articles to be found online that discuss the importance of this.


It might be a good idea to read some good marriage books together if she would be up for it. The ones that come to my mind are The 5 Love Languages and Love & Respect. They would both be beneficial with the concerns you are dealing with right now.


Remember when you talk to your wife to never use "you" statements otherwise she will most likely instantly get on the defense. Try to say "I feel" this way. "I would feel really good if you would go with me to my reunion" or "I feel like we are on different pages with parenting strategies, what can we do to reach a middle ground."


I wish you luck! You have good intentions and definitely realistic expectations.

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The original post is a little old, but I had to respond because parts of it just broke my heart. What a sweet, willing, honest husband.


For Question 1, accept that you may have to go without her. Don't even consider not going if she won't cooperate. Ask her what it would take to persuade her to go with you. It's possible that nothing would do it. It's also possible she'll come up with a gigantic request. See if you can do it. Ask her about what is stressing her out. Be her shoulder to cry and complain on. Learn to say (sincerely), "Oh, you poor thing!" whenever she complains. If you can manage to sit by her or hold her without talking, just nodding and making comforting sounds, you'll be a stress reliever just with your presence.


For Question 2, ask her to teach you her ways of handling your daughter. Once you understand them and can do them as perfectly as she can, then start to come up with improvements. I realize the child is just as much yours as your wife's and that you have every right to be heard. But...your wife has taken on the primary caretaker role and won't easily share it just because that would be the fair thing to do. Start out as a humble subordinate (even though you should not have to!) and gradually push for change. Her resistance will be much less when she realizes you are on her side and that the two of you aren't really terribly different in outlook.


You are not wrong. And you're not alone. The difficulties you're going through are very common to all marriages. When you have time, go to link removed check out the books parisian mentioned. Those books will lead you to others that may speak to how you are feeling. All the luck in the world to you.

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1) Does she feel like she has gained weight/feels frumpy, etc, after having a child and doesn't feel that she wants to be seen at such a gala? Would she be okay if you went alone? Also, does this involve going to another state and taking off of work? also if you were the "popular guy" it might be a lot of pressure on her from old friends that you hopefully married a beauty queen or astrophysicist and she just doesn't feel she measures. It is also tedious going to something where you will know zero people/


2) Is she an early childhood teacher and is she basing things on what she is learned? Also, is it really that bad that your daughter gets up early? Maybe this is your daughters natural cycle of being an early bird. Could you compromise about maybe keeping your daughter up an extra 30 minutes to an hour in the evening to see if perhaps that gets her up 30 minutes instead of an hour when you would like her to? I can't say it is bad parent skills if the waking up early is the only issue. If she doesn't undermine you at other times, can you just go with it?

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You should save the “desperate” word for your upcoming divorce posts. Once there, you will look back at your current “issues” and sob.



- You want to take a 2-1/2 year old to a school reunion. Are you crazy? Are you planning on chasing her around? Very clueless.


- You feel good about usurping wife’s child rearing knowledge with your own? Why on earth would you want to do that?


You don’t know how to be a loving husband. Get Gary Smalley’s “If only he knew” and apply his suggestions.


First aid:

Stop talking/thinking and listen to your wife! No matter what she’s says, rub your chin, think and say, Okay honey.


Your not at work, she’s not your possession and your not right.


PS, "she's right" I'm right - thinking leads to divorce.

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  • 2 years later...

I would like to thank all of you for your responses. Very helpful.




I ended up going alone to my reunion. Yes my wife could have been not happy with her weight (which may explain also why she did not come) but I always tell her she's beautiful inside and out. My daughter sleeps better in most nights and now she's 5 and I have a 9 month old son who's much calmer baby then she was (and still is). These days we have been so busy that my wife and I barely have time to talk which is frustrating since I miss that time with me and her alone. We have come a long way for agreeing on parenting and we are more consistent disciplining our daughter. Now my daughter has matured. We also discovered my daughter has Autism and we have taken a course how to carefully direct my daughter (she needs transition time and patience) and this helped plus now school has added support for her as well. Life is hectic but temporary with a young family/kids (my son still does not want to be placed down most of the time and he still can't stay sitting up for long).

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Great update!


so - the hesitancy to go because of her appearance was understood, the odd wake up time of the daughter had a root cause, and you guys are doing better at agreeing on parenting. Yes, you are not going to get as much adult talk time with an infant and a child with sensory challenges. But what about going on dates with your wife? Getting a grandparents or aunt or uncle to come watch the kids while you go on a child free date every week or every other week? Maybe once a month, get them to stay over with your kids and do an overnight getaway or ship the kids to grandparents? that might help with your one on one time

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