I feel like my husband and I only co-existed for our kids, now what?

I hear from so many people who tell me that they live in a loveless marriage where they just coexist in the same house. Most of the time, they tell me that divorce is not an option for them, whether it is because of their children or because of financial or moral issues. And although many of them have accepted the situation, they look for ways to improve it because they cannot deny that they are not happy and that they fight day after day to make this work.

I recently heard from a wife who said, in part, “My husband and I have agreed to stay together for our children and I am 100% committed to that. We both come from broken families and we refuse to do that to our children.” So divorce is not an option and I’m fine with that. However, at this point, we are just coexisting and even that is a struggle. Lately, we haven’t been spending much time. He has started coming and going as he pleases and the little things he does really annoy me. I think the reality of our situation has started to become real for both of us and now we are attacking each other. Watching us fight and argue about this is not good for our children either, which is why this is all ironic.

We stayed together because of the kids, but now they see our inability to get along, which is certainly not a good example for them. My goal is a relatively happy family that supports and cares for my children and gives them a good, healthy foundation, but this is not what is happening. How can we coexist when we get so upset and all the love is gone?” I will try to address these concerns in the next article.

When you tell yourself you’re just going to coexist, you’ve set it up where there isn’t much to look forward to and behavior around the house will reflect this: The situation of this couple is extremely common. And I applaud you for working so hard to provide a healthy family life for your children. Statistics on children from divorced families are plentiful and not so encouraging. I think most people agree that children living with both married parents are ideal, if possible. However, another part of the ideal is for children to live in a happy and stable home that provides positive examples of couples interacting in loving and optimistic ways. Nobody wants their children to see constant fighting or an inability to live together so that the child grows up thinking that this is acceptable or that this is how marriages behave and relate.

So it’s obvious that the ideal would be for the couple to find a way to not only live long and co-exist, but to create a situation where both of them are happy and fulfilled enough to be able to create the situation they envisioned all along. . But, this is going to be difficult when they repeatedly make it clear to themselves and each other that the real goal is simply to coexist and muddle through for the sake of their children. Frankly, most people would agree that this doesn’t sound like much fun. If you know that this negative situation is going to be your reality day after day, month after month, and year after year, how enthusiastic can you really be? And what kind of attitude and sense of cooperation can you bring to the table when you know this could be your bleak reality?

For me, the real key is reaching higher and having the idea that your life doesn’t necessarily have to be that way. People often just assume that the love has left their marriage and will never return. But if you agree to stay anyway, why wouldn’t you at least try to do more than just coexist? I know it’s easier said than done when you don’t get along. But to me, it makes more sense to aim to do something other than coexist. Everyone needs something to look forward to. And knowing that, day in and day out, the best you can hope for is getting along without a lot of emotion can’t be all that appealing.

Going from coexisting to really enjoying your lives together: Hopefully, you can gradually change your perspective so that you no longer think that co-existing is the best you can hope for. If you can’t visualize this yet, then perhaps you can make a very conscious effort to bring more joy into your life outside of your home. Maybe this means going out with friends once in a while, taking a class, or pursuing a hobby. This is not meant to be a replacement for your home life. It is meant to give you a breather and a more positive outlook so that this carries over into your home life and eventually improves it.

Another tip is to pause or redirect when you realize you and your spouse don’t have much time to head into volatile territory. Instead of just giving in and letting things get worse while thinking “well here we go again because nothing is ever going to change”, take a break. Go for a walk. Calmly tell your spouse that you will deal with this later when you are both calm and receptive. I know this sounds like a simple thing, but if you learn to redirect regularly, you can really change the culture of your marriage because “not getting much” will become less and less frequent until it changes.

Once you’re seeing things in a more positive light, it can help to try to include your spouse in those things that bring you more new happiness, or if that’s not possible, then find something the two of you can enjoy together. You don’t have to make what you suspect are unattainable goals, but as you become more comfortable with it, begin to include your spouse not only on your bad days but on your good days as well. This change will not go unnoticed by your family and could be what takes your relationship to a better place that goes beyond living together.

It is not impossible to recover the love relationship, even if you are only coexisting at the moment: I know this may sound crazy to you right now, but it really is possible to completely change your marriage, even if you are only looking to improve it for the sake of your children today. Think about this. The commitment you have made to your family shows without a doubt what your priorities are. But what if you could do even better? What if you could give them parents who really love each other instead of parents who just go through the motions or put on a show for their benefit? I know from personal experience that it is possible. It’s not always easy or even intuitive, but with gradual and deliberate changes, it’s possible.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *