Does Your Wife Think It’s All Your Fault?

By:  Steve Horsmon

I couldn’t help but share this with you.  The story below is one I read today and it is the perfect example of what I hear from many, many guys.  I’m wondering if YOU are in this boat.

Of course, millions of women can say they are having the exact same problem, but I’m talking to you – not them.

The reasons a woman will turn into “Jane” in the story below are many.  As you’ll see, there is practically NOTHING her husband can do to get her to rejoin him as a wife in his marriage.

Over-bearing personality?  How many of you have heard that one?

It probably has some basis in reality, but is it the REAL reason your wife simply refuses to pay attention to you and your marriage?

I read the reply from the marriage counselor who posted this story.

It was good…BUT…

He TOTALLY left out the part of the story where Jane NEVER turns around!

The part where she actually NEVER makes an effort!

What about when Jane has chosen to live the rest of her life like this and believes you will too?

What then?

I have very specific views and advice on this stage of a marriage and what you can/should be doing.

After reading the story, if YOU relate to it, let’s start a conversation in the comments about what marriage counselors will never tell you about how this REALLY needs to go.

If you are still too uncomfortable to talk about it, send me an email and I will share the rest of the story.

Here is the story from Save My Marriage Today:

Hi, About 10 months ago I began to notice that
my wife and I were living separate lives and that
we had become dis-connected. My wife *Jane* and I
are parents of two young boys. *Jane* is a great
mom but she has become so focused on the boys that
it seems like she doesn’t care if I am around or
not.

   She just turned 40 and is a stay at home mom
and seems to be having a real hard time with it.
So I started to go to counseling to work on myself
and I have to admit that after going for a short
while I learned that I had a lot of things to work
on and change. After a few visits to the counselor
*Jane* began to join me and for the next few
visits she and the counselor worked me over pretty
good, but as soon as the focus left me and turned
to her she said she would not go anymore.

   *Jane* is a fairly religious person so I asked  
a Christian counselor from our church to come and
help us work through these things, so he came to
the house every week for a couple of months and
the three of us would read the bible and he was
able to deal with any question or situation
directly reading from the bible, but once again
when the focused left me and moved to *Jane*.

   She told both the counselor and me that she has
her  own relationship with god and even though she
does  appreciate what the Bible has to say it does
not  apply to where she is at right now so she
didn’t  want to see him anymore either. So once
again  *Jane* doesn’t want to take any
responsibility for  what has happened in our
relationship and she has  clearly stated that the
problem lies with me and  my overbearing
personality.  

   When I ask her when she is going to get back
into the marriage she  will say nothing is ever
good enough or fast  enough for you, or she will
say that she is doing  the best she can. *Jane*
and I have been married  for ten years now and I
don’t drink, I have never  hit her or verbally
abused her in any way and I  have never cheated on
her.  

   What I did not do was understand that she has
had horrible relationships  with most of the men
in her lives from her father  to stepfather and
through the boyfriend stage. I  also did not show
her my appreciation enough and  I’m sure to her I
never seemed satisfied.  

   I have worked on changing so many aspects of my
personality and my life and I feel good about the
direction I am heading. I have also become  a
much better father and I continue to see a  
different counselor now just to keep working on  
what I can for myself.  

       All three of the counselors have said that
*Jane* is stuck and scared and she must be
realizing that I am doing everything I possibly
can do to save and make this marriage better and
that she has to begin to deal with her problems
now. She tells me that she does still loves me,
but that I need to understand that this may take
along time for her to come back to me because she
wants it to be genuine and that she is waiting for
me to be consistent with my attitude and
personality.

    I have to admit that I did all of the wrong
things from the beginning of all of this; like
buying her things and trying to hold her hand and
hug her way to much and write her letters telling
her how much I love her and promise to continue
working on myself, but none of this did any good.
 

    I guess my question to you is what to do
next. The hardest part to all of this is that it
is beginning to affect the kids and she doesn’t
want to talk about any of what we are going
through. I love her and I am not going to give up
so what I would like to do is come up with a way
of calming her obvious anger and working on
gaining her trust and friendship.

    The counselor I am seeing has been helpful for
working on me, but I really don’t have anyone to
talk to or to give me advice on dealing with
*Jane*.

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2 Responses to Does Your Wife Think It’s All Your Fault?

  1. D says:

    Yeah, this is me, very similar scenario. My wife is different in that we are working together (most of the time) to repair our marriage after I was blind-sided by finding out she had “fallen out of love” with me, and subsequently in love with someone else. After two years of struggle to repair our marriage, we finally seem to be getting things right, but I still can’t help but feel she sees me (and my “overbearing” personality) as THE problem. I still carry some resentment, and I feel like everything will be okay as long as I can keep it in check–as long as I “behave.” There are some lingering problems that we can’t seem to get past and one of them I think is directly related to this article. I feel very frustrated when I feel like I’m not being listened to. When my wife gets upset about something, she shuts down her listening and frequently interrupts and cuts me off, no matter how I try to communicate. I have come so far and done so much to work on my own listening and giving her full attention and seeking to understand when she is communicating to me, something she acknowledges. I don’t feel like I get the same respect and consideration. She tells me she DOESN’T interrupt me, I am too sensitive, I talk too much, or “that’s just how people communicate,” etc…everything but acknowledging maybe she needs to work on her listening!

    • Steve Horsmon says:

      Hi Frumer71,

      Congrats on the hard work you both have done. It’s admirable and you’re a strong man to have accepted your part in turning things around.

      The over-bearing personality thing is what many women feel from guys who:
      1. Are hyper-analytical
      2. Are intellectually judgmental or critical
      3. Are excessive talkers (my girlfriend calls it HyperSplain – explaining to painful detail)
      4. Have OCD personality tendencies (always hyper busy and super intense)

      An effective way to dial back our tendencies toward these things is to adopt a “less is more” style of communicating.
      This is very hard for guys who are not used to communicating like this but women respond to it well. This is especially effective when you have
      a history of having long, heavy, emotionally draining conversations. You must PRACTICE this all the time.

      The bottom line is to cut out all the analysis and NEED to make her understand your point and agree with you. State your value and your case simply. Just one example:

      Her: “I could use more help in the morning with XYZ. It’s driving me crazy that we’re always running late.”
      Old You: “Well, if we could maybe set the alarm earlier and organize things better and you could wait until later to do ABC…”
      New You: (as you touch the small of her back or elbow) Calmly say, “I hear ya, babe. I got your back.” Kiss on the cheek and go away. Then follow through. On YOUR terms. She may criticize HOW you help with XYZ. Unacceptable. She needs to know you’re there to help and pull your weight, but NOT with disrespect and being treated like a kid.

      Less is more is masculine and attractive. Continuing to show HER respect and attention is masculine and attractive. And immediately calling her out when she chooses to behave with disrespect is masculine and attractive. This must also be done with “less is more”.

      “Hey babe, I need 15 seconds to finish my thought and the floor is yours. Please don’t interrupt me in the middle of a sentence”. Period. End of discussion. No matter how she reacts or what she says. State your *value*, (with kind respect) and move on.

      Your feelings of not receiving the same respect and consideration YOU give are valid. It’s okay to tell her so. Less is more.
      Don’t ASK her for these things. Tell her (calmly, firmly, with respect) that you will always give her “air time” when she needs it. You expect the same respect and consideration from her. But…work on making your points shorter. Less is more. A Hyper-Splaining man is hard for a woman to be attracted to and to respect.

      You say “we” finally seem to be getting things right. I’m curious what SHE is doing specifically different than before. And I’m curious about your responses to her when she does them.

      Have her read this from Alison Armstrong: http://www.understandmen.com/ktp/aboutmen.html
      Alison has some plain language stuff for women who don’t quite get that you are different.

      Thanks for the comment! You’re doing great work and should be proud.