I often hear from wives who feel like their marriage (and therefore their life) is in limbo. Often times, her husband has withdrawn from them and from the marriage. At times, the husband has even hinted at, suggested, or initiated a breakup or separation. The wife may assume that this means the marriage is over, but many husbands pause to confirm this, which can be maddening for the wife.
I heard from a wife who said: “My husband moved out six months ago. When he left the house, he told me that he wanted a space to rediscover himself and promised that he would go to therapy with me. That never happened. We have not seen each other regularly. . He sees the kids regularly, but I’m not included in these visits. He says he’s not seeing anyone else, but I’m not sure if I believe him. Day, I told him it wasn’t fair for us to live in limbo. like this. I told him to be honest with me about what was going to happen to our marriage. I looked him right in the face and said ‘tell me the truth.’ So I immediately said that if it wasn’t over, did that mean that he was going to commit to our marriage? I was very disappointed when he said he couldn’t make that commitment yet. This just doesn’t make sense to me. say it’s over but don’t promise to help give me to save my marriage, where does this leave me? “
I really felt sorry for this wife because I have been there myself. When you find yourself in this situation, it feels like your life is on hold. You don’t want to get your hopes up only to get cut off later. But you certainly don’t want to give up on your marriage, either. Then what do you do? Well, there are a couple of things that I will discuss next.
Although it may not seem like it now, it may be good news (and a good thing) that your husband does not say that their marriage is over: I know that the fact that you refuse to say the marriage is over and at the same time refuse to commit to saving it might not seem like a great victory. But believe me, it can be. Because I hear from so many wives on my blog whose husbands are being very direct and clear that their marriage is completely over. In fact, these husbands often give their wives no hope that the marriage can be saved.
So as confused and frustrated as you are, know that at least you are still being given some hope. Of course, it may be sending you mixed signals and you don’t know what tomorrow will bring. But he has not gone so far as to say that it is totally and completely over. And in my experience and opinion, this can be very significant. The way I see it, you can use that as a catalyst to move forward with a positive and hopeful attitude because this will help you no matter what tomorrow holds.
Working on yourself while waiting for him to make a more definitive decision: In my opinion, the worst thing you can do right now is pressure your husband to make a quick decision. I know you are eager to settle and move on. But her husband has repeatedly shown her that he is not ready to give it to her. If you push him too hard, he might go ahead and say it’s over, even if this isn’t what he really wants or how he really feels lonely because you didn’t give him the time he needed to make a genuine decision. You don’t want to force him to give a hasty answer, which could be the same one that you don’t want.
When I was going through this situation, my attitude was always that as long as he did not tell me that it was all over or that he was not filing for divorce, there was still the possibility that he would finally make the decision that saved our marriage (AND Ultimately, this is what happened.) I know it feels like you’re in limbo, but while you’re waiting for your husband to make the best decision, there’s nothing to say that you can’t start moving forward in a healthy way on your own.
The wife said that her husband had not kept his promise to go to therapy, but nothing said that she could not pursue this on her own. Helping yourself will provide some relief. If going to therapy on your own makes you uncomfortable, there are many remedies you can try in your own home that don’t require you to go anywhere.
And let me tell you a secret. Often times when you start to make improvements in yourself or your own life, this will improve the way you approach and interact with your husband, which in turn will improve your marriage. I know you may be skeptical about this, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen it work. The truth is, your husband will often notice positive changes in you and respond accordingly in his own positive way.
In my own case, I begged and pleaded with my husband to make the decision to go home. I let go of the guilt and pressure and yet he kept delaying any commitment or decision. In fact, the more he pushed it, the less he saw or heard it. He was avoiding me because he didn’t like dealing with my drama. Finally, I abandoned this strategy because I really had no other choice. It wasn’t until I went back and worked on myself that he started chasing me and this made a difference.
Since you really are in a position where you need to have the patience to give yourself some space, what is the harm in trying to make the best of the situation while you are doing it, especially when the same act can enhance your changes? of attitude? saving your marriage?