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Tuesday, 10 May 2011

My Husband Says He's Tired Of Me And Might Leave. What Now?

I recently heard from a wife whose husband had been repeatedly telling her that he was tired of her. Every time a topic that came up that the husband didn't like (or he was uncomfortable with,) he would sigh and say something like: "I'm getting so tired of you always trying to bring me down, always nagging me, and always wanting something from me. It's to the point where I'd rather be away from you than with you. I'm not sure how much longer I'm going to want to stay in this marriage if things remain the way that they are."

The wife had very mixed feelings about this. Naturally, she felt defensive. It wasn't all that pleasant to hear her spouse say that he was tired of her. And, frankly, the wife was tired of some of the husband's behaviors, but she wasn't going to go around telling him this or complaining about it. And she didn't feel that her behaviors were all that out of line. But, she certainly didn't want to lose her marriage.

She felt like she needed to do something or respond in some positive way before things got out of hand. She asked me, in part: "how are you supposed to respond when your husband says he's tired of you? How do you not take offense to that? I'm tired of some of the things that he does too, but I'm not ready to just give up on my marriage. What are my options?" I will share some of the insights that I gave the wife in the following article.

Sometimes When Your Husband Says He's Tired Of You, He's Projecting His Weariness About Other Things: Many wives in this situation intuitively know that their husband's being "tired" of them isn't entirely fair. Often, they can easily look around and see other stressors in his life that are weighing on him.

And, it's usually no coincidence that his more direct criticism comes after he's had an issue with those same stressors. For example, this wife noticed that if her husband had a bad day or lost money at his job, he would be much more quick with all of his "I'm tired of this" talk. The wife was pretty sure that what he was really tired of was his job, although she couldn't make him see this. In fact, the more she brought this up, the more he seemed annoyed and critical.

Although projection is very common, most people aren't going to recognize or admit this about themselves, especially if they are still right in the middle of (and therefore are too close to) the situation that is causing the projection in the first place.

It's not likely that your husband is going to nod, tell you that you are right, and then just stop his hurtful words and accusations. Instead, you will usually need to make at least a few changes, bring about some improvements, and then allow him to see this on his own later, when hindsight is hopefully possible. Now, I'll discuss the things that you can do right now to address this.

Even Though Your Husband May Well Be Out Of Line To Tell You That He's Tired Of You, See If There's Any Validity Behind His Words: I understand that your husband's words may well be not hitting home because they are so out of line. My husband said some very nasty things about being tired of me before he eventually started talking about divorce.

So I know that it's very easy to become defensive and to just tune him out. But, if you really want to turn this situation around and not only save your marriage but make it better, you will likely need to make some positive changes. And his words can give you some clues toward these positive changes.

So, to the extent that you can, it can really help to try to objectively look at what he's saying and see if there are any directives that you can use to improve your situation. In this particular example, the husband was very angry because he felt that his wife wasn't allowing him to relax. As he described it, he would get home from a difficult day of work, only to be confronted with the wife's "nagging." Although this description probably wasn't accurate, there likely were some clues that the wife could use to improve her situation.

Because what the husband was really requesting was for his wife to understand his stress levels and to help him with this issue rather than bringing his attention to it or intensifying it. So while his words weren't fair or accurate (since it wasn't the wife's fault that his job was stressful,) some good would likely come out of this if the wife could look past the words and respond instead to the husband's stressful situation.

How To Handle It When Your Husband Is Telling You That He's Tired Of You: There's no doubt that this was a difficult situation. But I didn't the think that the wife should ignore it or respond negatively. It's always better to try to take a marital difficulty and turn it into something positive. In this instance, although I knew that the wife was hurt and defensive, there was a lot that she could take from this and things that she could do to turn this around.

I suggested that the next time the husband gave the wife his "I'm tired of you" speech, she might try to respond differently the next time. She may consider something like: "I hear what you're saying and I'm not surprised because you've been saying this a lot. Rather than continuing to say the same things and hurt each other, can we talk about what might actually make our situation better?

I don't want to continue with the same behaviors that have been bothering you, but I need to understand what the problem really is. Can we sit down and talk calmly about this? I want for us both to be happier in our marriage so I need to understand what, exactly, is annoying you and how I can change this. And I'll share with you how your statements make me feel so that we can both avoid these behaviors that hurt rather than help each other."

Do you see how you're trying to flip this around so that at least something positive is coming out of this? The whole idea is to use this situation as a starting place to make the improvements which are going to stop these types of comments (and the possible fall out from them) for good.

Unfortunately for me, I ignored my husband's telling me that he was tired of me for far too long. It was almost too late when I finally got the hint. This almost cost me my marriage. Luckily, over time (and taking calculated baby steps), I was able to reestablish intimacy, bring back the love, and save our marriage. If it helps, you can read that very personal story on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com/

Leslie Cane - About the Author:
Leslie Cane's blog is at http://isavedmymarriage.com.  She enjoys sharing the story of how she saved her own marriage to help others. Her article website is at http://lesliecanearticles.com


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