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How Do I Tell My Spouse That I’m Unhappy in Our Marriage?

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Hi, I need your help. I’ve been married for 15 years now, and have two children. My partner thinks our marriage is great, but I feel like I have more of a roommate than a spouse. I don’t know how to say it to my partner that our marriage isn’t fine. I have a serious aversion to conflict. In the meanwhile, I’ve been using my career as an escape for me. Please?

from a concerned reader

The best predictor of whether a couple will divorce is not their age, age of their marriage, income, or even if they‘re going through a stressful phase in their lives. It is how they communicate.

Expressing what we want can be extremely difficult, especially if you were never taught to vocalize what you want. Besides, you mentioned you avoid confrontation at all costs.

But, if we cannot clearly tell our spouses what we want, we lose the right to be mad at them if they don’t give it to us. If you cannot put it in words, there’s a way you can mirror it.

Your relationship could dramatically shift if you said something like this:

“For a while now, I feel like we’ve become more of roommates than husband and wife. I would like to see us have deeper conversations, have more time together, and make an effort to connect to each other. I think we’ve put more time on the kids and our jobs, and let our marriage run on autopilot. I’m scared that if we allow it to progress, it might be too late to repair it.”

Your spouse will have the chance to let out their thoughts. You can have this conversation with or without the presence of a mediator or therapist.

We all have our personal limitations. Quit using fear as an excuse. Sit your spouse down and let them know about your unhappiness, and the need to attend therapy to give your marriage a chance and learn how to communicate.

Remember, don’t take a lot of time to build up your nerve to “release the news” as it will only be harder for the two of you.

You’ll find more about this answer in our article “How To Tell Your Spouse You’re Unhappy in the Marriage“.

If you’re saying right now…  “I Want a Divorce!” then please read this series.

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