I think my husband is having an affair. I have played mind games for months trying to convince myself it is just my imagination. He has become so distant both physically and emotionally. When he walks in the door he brushes past me and it feels like – honestly it feels like I repulse him. I find him looking at me oddly and when we get into bed we might as well be in different rooms. We haven’t been married very long and this started soon after we married. Even on our wedding day I felt he was only half there. What should I do? Is it really all my imagination?
Any person who has felt isolated in a marriage can relate to your story.
That feeling of distance and sense of revulsion many people in a committed relationship have felt when a distancing appears.
We usually have those feelings for a reason. It’s most likely not your imagination. Trust yourself. What you don’t know are the reasons why you feel as you do and that is what needs to be discovered.
You’ve only been married a short time so everything is new to the both of you. Being married changes things. There is a sense of permanence and commitment to one person. It might only be your husband is feeling the pressure of being married and adjusting to perceived parameters in his life.
Before you talk to your husband write down all the reasons why you feel the way you do. Be as specific as you can in detailing times and places where those feelings came to you. This will help bring some clarity to your thinking and then when you talk together it will be in a clear and focused manner.
Perhaps start by asking him how he is feeling in these first months of marriage and tell him you sense something is amiss. Is it work? Is it something you can both work on? Very small steps at first.
The lack of intimacy and warmth is a very difficult challenge. Opening up lines of communication is a necessary step. Were you able to communicate before the distancing? Did anything happen that you recall to trigger this emotional distancing? Proceeding carefully, without judgements, is important.
In highly emotionally charged situations like this we can often make accusations that turn out to be unfounded.
As often happens when we ask questions we forget to give the person a chance to respond or we try to answer for them. Ask your questions and wait for his answer. Qualify your questions with the fact you feel something has changed.
Explain your feelings as clearly as possible. Your goal is to understand what is happening because a marriage is a shared relationship.
Let him explain how he is feeling and go from that point. There are any number of possibilities why you feel as you do. Try to go into the discussion with an open mind, ready to listen. Good Luck!
ABOUT LINDA SIMPSON
“I take strength from your calm, your honesty, and the hope you give me for my future.” Cheryl
Linda is a fresh voice in the divorce advice world. She offers a pragmatic, common sense approach to life after divorce issues based on over twenty years surviving and thriving following a very traumatic divorce.
As a single parent, her sons are an enormous source of joy in her life. Linda is a loving mother and grandmother to four delightful grandchildren.
She holds a degree from the University of Waterloo with concentrations in sociology and philosophy and guidance counselling certification from Queen’s University.
She is an accredited trainer for The Peace Education Foundation, a leader in conflict resolution training. The institute is ‘dedicated to educating children and adults in the dynamics of conflict resolution and promoting peacemaking skills in home, schools, and community.’
In a long and successful teaching career, she also served as a counsellor and workshop facilitator for SEL (social emotional learning) programming and The Peace Education Foundation throughout her school and school district and was a frequent conference presenter for SUNY Potsdam Faculty of Education USA.
She writes for The Divorce Magazine UK and her blog is seen regularly on Huffington Post Canada where the focus is life after divorce and parenting issues.
She is a writer and poet and is presently at work on a book based on her divorce experience.