How to get through to him

gardenfrogNovember 8, 2008

He is tired of hearing me complain. I am tired of complaining. He refuses to address any issues. I want to get to the bottom of the issues so that we don't have to keep addressing them. His needs are obviously being met because he isn't telling me otherwise. My needs are not even close to being met. I want to work things out but he doesn't seem to care.

The issues:

Total lack of intimacy

Total lack of personal hygiene

Total lack of communication

What do I do? I am allowing myself to become angry and combative all the time. I feel trapped. I am so sad that all I want to do is cry. I don't know what to do. I don't want to leave, but I am getting ready to walk out.

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Gardenfrog, why do you stay? Can you honestly say your life is better with him than without?

You feel trapped, angry and want to cry all the time. You have expressed to this man that you have needs he is not meeting and he refuses to address your concerns. He does not seem to care about you or your needs in the relationship.

Why are you still there?

    Bookmark   November 8, 2008 at 11:37PM
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Read something this morning that might help you.

"I noticed that whenever I want to talk to you about "your issue the thing that is bothering you" you become "angry,moody, annoyed".

I imagine that you think that this is not important to you.

I feel really "sad, frightened, lonely" when you ignore me and I am wondering how we can talk about this together".

Perhaps you could try a conversation such as that. See what comes of it.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2008 at 2:23AM
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First, I wouldn't want to be intimate if there is a hygiene problem. Do you have another bedroom? Go set it up as your room if you plan on staying. Sleep there and let him smell himself. I'm sure he'll ask why. Tell him the odor is just too much. Does he still have a job? Well, I'm sure they have noticed too. They may have already said something.
As far as communication, does he have someone he is close to that could gve you some insight? It's worth a try.
If you decide no more, why do you have to leave, why can't he?

    Bookmark   November 9, 2008 at 9:59PM
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Gardenfrog, Often I read where someone has advised someone contemplating divorce to consider "Am I better off with him or without him" and I think it is an extremely simplistic and shallow thought process, to base "your life" (and the lives of your children on).

Marriage with children (and all that encompasses) is far more complicated than that, and the LONG TERM consequences to that decision will be felt for "years" by everyone involved.

You may solve certain problems by leaving, but you may gain problems you had not even thought of, as one or both of you re-marry and step mom's and step dad's are now in the family picture, and all that encompasses, with these new people now parenting your children.

If you do not have children, obviously it is a decision then that would only affect the two of you.

You stated that you really do not want to leave. Build on that. Tell him that you are going to meet with a counselor. He can choose to go (or not). If he chooses to not attend, then you will assume he has no interest in helping to save this marriage. That you are willing to do what you can to try and make this marriage a happy one for BOTH of you. But that you cannot do it alone. If you are unhappy, tell him that. Ask him if he wants to save your marriage. Ask him what he is willing to do. Ask him what he needs from you. Can the two of you somehow turn this marriage around?

Often, when married couples try and discuss problems, men often tune her out, and just see it as nagging or blah, blah, blah - or they argue in ways that solve nothing and is unhealthy for the marriage. A counselor should be trained to help each of you to see the other person's viewpoint, and can be great in mediating the issues between you and help you BOTH get to a happier place in your marriage.

And last, is your husband experiencing depression that he needs to be treated for? Could you help him get a new look to get excited about his appearance again?

    Bookmark   November 10, 2008 at 10:33AM
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Ruling out that he has some mental or physical thing wrong with him - have you done that yet? Then...

Some small children, teenagers, pets and spouses do NOT respond to logic and verbal attempts to communicate. Stop trying to fry eggs with a tennis racket.

Make his actions have consequences. If he refuses to bathe, he sleeps on the lumpy bed in the guest room. He bathes, he is welcome back into your cozy bed. What do you do that is essential to him? Make that a bargaining chip. If he ignores you, you don't feed him. Don't waste time talking, talking, talking. Take action. This equals that, very cut and dried.

No offense to other posters, but I gag when I read stuff like, "Could you help him get a new look to get excited about his appearance again?" This is a grown man, with a responsibility to keep himself clean, you are not his mother. If he can't grow a set, you will have to. Put your foot down and remember the rules of dog training: don't keep jerking politely on the leash, it only nags the dog. Give a few really hard pulls, make him feel it and he will see that you mean it.

I'm sure I will now get flamed, etc, but this wife has basically a child for a husband and she is desperate. She has to make him grow up or lose her marriage.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2008 at 7:26PM
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No flames from me Scarlett, I'm hearing you.
And it's very true in these situations the spouse just
takes any suggestion for help, counseling etc as nagging.

OP can't change him, only how she deals with him & what she is prepared to do to back it up.


    Bookmark   November 13, 2008 at 1:52AM
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could he be depressed?

    Bookmark   November 13, 2008 at 6:52PM
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It sounds like all the classic signs of depression to me. If he's not willing to go the doctor and get help for himself, either prepare yourself for a life of misery or get out. Without medication, it doesnt go away.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2008 at 2:31PM
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Thank you to everyone that posted sugestions. I really appreciate it a lot. I don't want to leave. I do love him very much. I let him know that either he showers at night or stays in the spare bedroom. Don't even bother to come to bed without a shower. So far it is working, but time will tell. I just have to stick to it and remind myself that being nice and hinting about it don't work.

The communication and intimacy issues I will have to work on. It just seems like we speak different languages. When he repeats back to me what he heard me say, half of the time I am going "huh?" I wonder if I have a problem with the way that I say things.

Thanks again for all of the responses. :o)

    Bookmark   November 16, 2008 at 9:57AM
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The communication and intimacy issues I will have to work on. It just seems like we speak different languages. When he repeats back to me what he heard me say, half of the time I am going "huh?"

Gardenfrog, please check out adult Asperger's Syndrome. Lack of intimacy and difficulty with interpersonal communications are two of the possible symptoms. Specific Asperger's features can vary in degree with the individual.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2008 at 9:10PM
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Okay, he's depressed, he's passive agresssive, he has Asperger's, whatever. Don't just keep on being miserable, take some action. You have a life to live, as well. Are there children involved here? Get him to a doctor, medical or head. Maybe your answer is as easy as the Happy Pills everybody takes now. "Better living through chemistry." If he won't take the Happy Pills, maybe you could. You are suffering needlessly.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2008 at 8:52PM
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