Few things are more devastating than hearing that your husband does not love you anymore; you may feel angry, hurt and confused at the news. The emotional trauma of hearing these words from someone you love can send you reeling. The important thing to keep in mind is that even though things are very dark right now, you can get through this and grow from the experience.
1. Find Out Why
You’ve been dealt a tremendous blow, and a myriad of questions are, in all likelihood, flooding your mind. Why is this happening? When did he fall out of love with you? Is there someone else? Is there anything you can do to save your marriage? All of these are important questions, and you should ask them. Ask your husband what prompted him to tell you how he feels. Is this something he said in a fit of anger, or has he felt this way for some time? You will want to know if someone else has become the object of his affections or if he simply feels the two of you are moving in different directions.
2. Suggest Couples' Counseling
If your husband is willing to work on your marriage, then consider couples' counseling. Saying you’ve fallen out of love with your wife is a very strong statement, and not indicative of an overnight change in feelings. Perhaps through counseling the two of you can discover the root of his feelings and actively work to put love and trust back into your marriage. This can be done on your own if both of you are willing to do research, read relationship self-help books, and attend reputable seminars. Because emotions tend to run high when it comes to love, however, you may do better with the aid of a professional counselor.
3. Don’t Self-Flagellate
No matter what outcome you and your husband arrive at, don’t beat yourself up. Of course you should take an honest look at where you might have contributed to this development in your marriage, but don’t blame yourself. Further, keep in mind that people do change; your goals and wants in life evolve. It is possible that during that process, your and your husband’s emotions simply evolved in different directions.
4. Lean on Family and Friends
Don’t forget to lean on your family and friends. It’s very easy to hide marital troubles out of a sense of shame and/or failure, but this isn’t necessary. While you don’t have to broadcast your marital woes to every member of your family or to all of your work colleagues, you most certainly have the right to lean on a few trusted friends and relatives. In the process, you may find out that many of them have been through similar difficulties and have kernels of wisdom they are happy to share. Although the ultimate solution of this conflict lies with you and your husband, it never hurts to hear different perspectives.
5. Consider Individual Counseling
Whether or not you and your husband decide to stay together, you may still want to consider individual counseling. Getting divorced or separated is one of the most trying things a person can experience, and talking through your grief with a counselor can be healing. If you and your husband decide to stay together and work things out, you may still have ambivalent feelings. Again, a good therapist can help you sort through your emotions. Either way, working on yourself is a positive way to cope with both your present and your future.
- Hendrix, Harville. Getting The Love You Want: A Guide for Couples. New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1988.
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