Marriage Missions International

How To Talk To Your Husband to Truly Connect

Photo by Nuttakit, courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Photo by Nuttakit, courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It’s amazing how complicated communicating with each other can become! Couples, who used to talk for hours at a time with each other before marrying eventually find themselves mis-communicating more than communicating after they’ve been married for a while.

Rather than talking WITH each other, they resort to talking AT each other —spitting out facts rather than connecting in their relationship. Have you found yourself in that place with your husband? If so, join the crowd!

And then when you realize the disconnection going on between you and your husband and you try to dialogue with him —nothing!  Something you say flies right over his head, or it obviously doesn’t hold the same meaning for him as it does for you because of his reaction (or lack there-of).  And then things become even more complicated in your relationship!

Does that mean that men are dense when it comes to communication? No. It may be YOUR communication isn’t always clear to them, but it doesn’t mean ALL communication comes out that way. And it doesn’t mean that you can’t find ways to bridge those misunderstandings. It just demonstrates the need to learn more about each other’s style of communicating and listening in order to better connect in your relationship.

When one man read one of the articles we’re going to refer you to read, he took it as if the author was saying that men were less intelligent and less capable of communicating —which isn’t the point at all! And it’s simply not true. It just means that we speak and perceive things differently from each other. And different isn’t bad or less intelligent —it’s just different!

The same is true in the reverse. Men can talk to us (or not talk to us) and we attach entirely different meanings to what they directly say to us or by their silence.

Why is it that we seem to be on the same “page” sometimes (especially before marriage) and end up on different planets at other times? That’s one of those mysteries in life, which we may want to ask the Lord when we see Him in Heaven.

Part of the reason could be that sometimes we’re able to do things for a “season” but we can’t maintain it over the long haul —we resort back to our original way of doing things eventually. Does that mean that a person can never change? No. We can all grow to a certain extent.

But sometimes it takes intentionality and sometimes we may never grow much beyond a certain point and we need the help of our partner to go the rest of the distance. But together as a team —giving each other grace and space, it’s amazing what can be accomplished. As the Bible says in Ecclesiastes 4:9-10,

“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend (or spouse) can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!”

So, how do we “de-code” this mysterious difference in our communication styles? We discovered a few articles on different web sites that we believe will help. They won’t give you all the answers —only God Himself knows that! But it’s a good start.

Please Note: The first article we will refer you to, appears on the web site for a secular magazine. Although it isn’t written specifically for the Christian audience, it contains good information. As with any human resource, just glean whatever you feel will apply to your situation, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Keep in mind that:

“There could be a very good reason why your husband doesn’t hear what you’re saying. There’s new medical research which reveals why this could be, and what to do about it.”

I encourage you to read more:

HOW TO TALK TO A MAN

— ALSO —

For 7 tips on how to get your spouse to open up, please click onto the web site link for Todayschristianwman.com to read:

CAN WE TALK?

From  Understandmen.com the following article, written by Alison A Armstrong can give you further clarity on this subject as you read:

LEARNING ABOUT MEN FROM MEN

And Dr David B. Hawkins gives several ideas for you to consider if you are dealing with an emotionally detached husband —which is anything but easy to understand or try to resolve. To learn what Dr Hawkins has to say on this subject, please click onto the Crosswalk.com article to read:

RELATING TO THE DETACHED MAN

— ALSO —

From the ministry of Love and Respect.com with Emerson Eggerichs:

THE SECRET TO MOTIVATING A HUSBAND

Another article that might help you to better talk to your husband in a way that will help you to connect, can be found on the web site for CBN.com. Please click onto the link below to read:

GET YOUR HUSBAND TO LISTEN TO YOU

Lastly, an important point to consider as you approach your husband is to make sure that you don’t do it during a time when you should H.A.L.T. — which would be a time when either of you is Hungry, Angry, Lonely, or Tired. There’s more vulnerability to be less tolerant during those times.

As author Scott Stanley says about approaching during a vulnerable time,

“A number of studies demonstrate that we tend to give people more benefit of the doubt [and grace] when we’re in a good mood and less benefit of the doubt when in a bad mood [or one of the above factors is in play]. If you’re in a bad mood, you’re more likely to perceive whatever your partner says or does more negatively, no matter how positive he or she is trying to be.”

So, the point is, to ask God to help you to discern when would be the best time to talk with your husband. You may still get a negative reaction from him, but there’s less of a chance of it if you pick a better time to make your approach.

Here’s something that Sheila Wray Gregoire (In her “My Husband Doesn’t Spend Any time With Me” blog) writes about timing your communication that I’ve found to be true too:

“Remember that men tend to communicate side by side, rather than face to face. They like talking while they’re doing something. They don’t tend to like just sitting around and talking face to face, the way we women do. So the more you can find things to do, the more you’ll likely communicate. And if you start laughing and finding things to do together, he’ll probably want to be with you more.

“So rather than attacking him with accusations that he doesn’t want to spend time with you, or that you want him to do something that you want to do, try to find things that he enjoys doing that you can do with him, even if you have to stretch yourself or go outside of your comfort zone. The best thing that you can do for your relationship is just to learn to be friends again, so try that out!”

The bottom line is to make your approach, one that truly works, rather than to continue to approach your husband in some pre-conceived manner that makes sense to you, but doesn’t really work, in the long-run.

You may be tired of trying, and I can well understand that. I’ve been there myself in the past. But I can tell you as a wife who finally realized that persevering beyond that which seems reasonable can produce fruit that is sweet —especially when our God is involved as we partner with Him in this journey of trying to improve our marriage relationships.

And if it is of any encouragement to you, I now have a terrific marriage where our communication is very open and deep in our connection. I pray this for you. May God give you the strength, help and hope to keep trying to connect with your husband.

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9).

Your “harvest” may or may not be what you hope for (I hope along with you that it will be), however, as you persevere, God will bless you in ways that would never have been possible if you hadn’t.

“And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ —to the glory and praise of God.” (Philippians 1:9-11)

This article was composed by Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International.

If you have additional tips you can share to help others on this issue, or you want to share requests for prayer and/or ask others for advice, please “Join the Discussion” by adding your comments below.

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Comments

46 Responses to “How To Talk To Your Husband to Truly Connect”
  1. Koinonia01 says:

    (NIGERIA)  Thanks for sharing.

  2. Tony says:

    (USA)  The article by Emerson Eggerichs is spot on! You have to speak your husbands language, which isn’t necessarily love, but respect. I’ve not read the other articles, but I wanted to share my own observations. I don’t really think men are emotionally detached or that they don’t express emotions. They simply express them differently. When a man is angry, that’s an emotion. So if your husband ever gets angry, the argument that he’s not emotional breaks down.

    Now does he have the same sorts of emotional responses as his wife? Doubtful. But if he’s happy his team scored a touch down, he’s emotional. If he’s enjoying sex with his wife, he’s emotionally connected. Now just because she may not connect that way is no reason to discount the way he experiences and expresses emotions.

    I’ve read so many articles that indicate either overtly or tacitly that men are not as well equipped emotionally, such as the studies that say the paths between the two hemispheres are more pronounced in women. I want to say it right now, that in no way means a man is inferior in either communication or emotion. He’s different, not better, not worse.

    There are pros and cons to both cerebral architectures. Men are typically better able to compartmentalize. There are times when it’s better to be focused on one thing and not have a dozen or so different sectors of the brain competing for processing. There are other times when multi-tasking is useful.

    This is why men grill and women cook. Grilling is single focused. Cook the meat on the grill. Meanwhile, his wife has three to six side dishes and salads going. Not different, better.

    If you want a man to open up emotionally, make it safe and enjoyable for him to do so. Don’t tell him he shouldn’t feel _______. Don’t tell him he’s too mad, or that he’s too excited about his team, or he’s not enough ______. Engage him about things you know he likes. If he watches Top Gear on BBC America, watch an episode with him and engage him about what you just watched.

    If he likes outdoor sports, ask to tag along. Men communicate (and emote) when they are doing things. So if you want that as part of your marriage, why not be his partner in his favorite activities?

    He’s not likely going to want to sit down and have a cup of tea with you, facing you, and sharing. But he’s more likely to go along with that if you are willing to join him hunting, or fishing or racing cars or whatever he likes.

    Respect your husbands interests enough to try to enjoy them with him. It certainly doesn’t express respect if you criticize those interests. Nor does it create an environment where he’ll want to sit down and share. Inside he’ll wonder what you are going to criticize next.

    • Amber says:

      (USA)  I completely agree with you, but I do have one question. You stated that women should engage in activities with their husbands that their husbands enjoy (and I agree), but that a man will not likely sit down and have a cup od tea with their wives… why shouldn’t he? The relationship should work both ways, should it not? IF I am willing to do something with my husband that he enjoys doing, it is fair that he do something with me that I enjoy doing.

      Of course, I would not ask him to join me in getting our nails done; however, going on a walk or something of that nature is entirely man-friendly. I see nothing wrong with expecting my husband to meet me half way, and that is one of the problems in our marriage. I feel like every minute of every day of my life I am searching for ways to avoid arguments, to make him feel respected and cared for, to join him in his interests, and to employ other tactics that I’ve actively searched for in troubled marriages to help mend our relationship, but I have yet to feel that the feelings are mutual.

      He doesn’t seem to care, attempt to understand my feelings or even show me an inkling of respect. It gets very frustrating to love someone and work so hard, when you get nothing in return.

      • Jean says:

        (USA) I know that this is Jan 2013, but I just wanted to tell you Amber, that you are so correct in your comment. Author, why would you and other writers keep telling women to do things that their husbands like, but not tell the husbands to do things that the wives like?

        This is not Christian like. It is not what you should be teaching these people. It is so wrong!!

        • Tony from United States says:

          Because this is an article instucting women on how to engage their husbands, the tips on teaching men to chat over tea and do things she likes are found in the articles with men as the target audience. One could write such things in this article, but it would be ineffective as this article is addressed to wives.

          • Marie from United States says:

            Tony, your response is a perfect example of the miscommunication that occurs frequently between the sexes. Amber and Jean are both expressing a frustration about these tactics being found ineffective in their particular relationships, and very likely in the minds of a LOT of women, including myself. The heart of the questions posed by their comments are two fold:

            1) If these things will help me better communicate with my husband, why does he still not listen?
            2) Why am I constantly finding articles like this these days, that are good first steps, but seem to leave off the reality of what follows?

            The fact is, I’ve found that there are specific circumstances that no matter how much I show respect for my husband, he only ultimately responds to other men in those areas – job, recreation, church/spirituality, etc.

            That’s not to say he doesn’t take my opinion into account, but no matter how much stress or lack of respect he experiences in his job or the lack of pay he receives, he refuses to so much as look at something different until a fellow man suggests it to him. He won’t read the Bible with me or lead prayer in our home unless another man says something that convicts his heart to do so. He will not make it a point to go outdoors with me to take a walk because its too hot/cold, but will spend time outside with friends for live music when another man calls.

            It’s frustrating to watch friends order, demean, and disrespect their husbands in front of him and behind his back, yet their spouse seems to cater to and love them dearly. I refuse to be “that woman.” That’s not who God has called me to be. That doesn’t take away the pain of the circumstances right now though.

          • Tony from United States says:

            Marie, But what is the source of the miscommunication? These ladies are not going to find many men here, as this topic is written to women. So this thread simply becomes an echo-chamber to vent their frustration. It may feel good for a while, but is it going to strengthen their marriages?

            When they ask questions such as where are the topics telling men to do their part, it demonstrates they haven’t looked around much to see that there are similar numbers of articles addressed to men instructing them on how to love their wives and live with them in an understanding way. It’s really hard to learn when you are busy bashing ALL (most) men. Since this thread is about learning, I see venting as counter productive and detracts from the stated topic.

          • Tony from United States says:

            Marie, I ask a few more questions:

            1. How do you know he’s not listening? Did he not give the “right” response? I’m not saying he was or wasn’t. I’m asking folks to check their assumptions.

            2. Behavior doesn’t change overnight. If you follow the suggestions for a day or a week and nothing changes, is it because he fails to notice or some other reason? I’ve seen people, both men and women, simply wait to see if a behavior is here to stay or the latest passing fad.

            After all, why get your hopes up, only to see the behavior end and end up disappointed? Not saying it’s right. I believe one should reward the behaviors we want to experience from our spouse. But we don’t always do that right away. Not just men, women too. If after consistent application, say a month or two, with few if any lapses into any negative patterns or behaviors, you don’t see changes, then perhaps a professional third party is needed.

          • Gail from United States says:

            It is addressed to wives and I understand some of the suggestions as being helpful. But I bet all of it was written by a man who still doesn’t understand a woman. lol

          • Cindy Wright from United States says:

            Nope! I wrote the majority of this article and I am definitely a woman. My husband and I have been married for over 42 years. In those years, I have learned a lot about communicating with my husband (didn’t always do it so well, so we miscommunicated too often). This web site contains a lot of material from things we have lived through and learned through. We’ve also helped MANY other couples with their communication skills. So, sorry… lol, this article was not mainly written by a man. :)

      • Judy says:

        (UNITED STATES) I know the feeling. My husband and I have been married 40 years and our children are all gone. We don’t talk to each other much at all. He is not at all fun to be with; I stay home alone everyday. The only time he touches me is a kiss good-bye. He makes me feel unloved everyday. His work has come first from day one. He is a good grandfather but I always feel left out of everything. Nothing bothers him; he will not talk to me when I say we are growing apart. I do not know how to get through to him. I’m so ready to leave.

        • Samantha from United States says:

          Judy, I have a wonderful husband of 29 years. With that said, we have had some very serious problems over the last seven months. We’re about to go see a therapist/psychologist for help. I’ve been doing some online researching and that’s how I found this story & comments, but I feel for your story, because communication is a big part of our issues and I can relate. I just went and bought the book ‘Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus’ and I already see a great idea about love letters to try.

          Also online I found understandmen.com and it has a section of 101 great questions to ask men. I believe part of our problem is being married 29 yrs & together 36, we forgot how to show interest in each other and just ‘assume’ it’s there, because of trust. Anyway… hope some of this helps. It seems silly at first. Really, after all these years he doesn’t know ‘I Love him’ and are always interested… well, I guess not, so you have to decide, try something different or give up. At this point mines worth fighting for, so here we go. I pray, but I’m also a realist and will know if he’s the one giving up. Good Luck.

          • Cindy Wright from United States says:

            Samantha, I LOVE Understandmen.com. I believe Alison Armstrong is a very wise gal. I’ve followed her for the last few years –particularly when she speaks on the Dennis Prager Program. You might even want to go to his web site and get some of the DVD’s or downloads of some of the programs she has done with Dennis –REALLY insightful. Dennis is all about clarity, and he gives Alison quite a bit of freedom to bring out some very profound points to help us to better understand our men.

            Also, I want to say that when you go to this counselor, make sure that he or she is one who is a “marriage-friendly” therapist. Not all counselors are good for marriages. Some are, but some actually can hurt the couple’s marriage relationship, rather than help it. I’ve known of several divorces that happened (that were completely preventable) because of faulty “guidance” and info given by the counselor, who MAY have been a good counselor in other ways, but NOT in counseling married couples. Please go into the “Marriage Counseling” topic of this web site to read what I mean by a “marriage-friendly” therapist. We have several articles, as well as quotes that go into more detail.

            We aren’t marriage counselors ourselves –we’re marriage educators, but we sure have learned the difference between a counselor who is good for marriages and those who aren’t. Please educate yourselves on this issue. It’s SO important.

            Also, please know that what you’re going through at 29 years of marriage is really quite common… not too many people realize this. Communication CAN break down and even though it doesn’t seem possible, you can be on totally different pages, as far as what you’re reading into your marriage relationship. But it IS a fixable situation, if you put your hearts and commitment into “unlearning” some things and learning some new things, without judgment –learning to be a “safe” marriage partner.

            My husband and I have been married for over 42 years and I’m still amazed at all I’m still learning about my husband, men, in general, and marriage. My husband is the same way concerning me and women, in general. But I can tell you that your marriage can grow to be good, very, very good –even outstanding, despite the problems you’re having right now. Just apply yourself to learning, and get a good counselor. That is a GREAT start on this new journey of your lives together. I pray well for you and hope your marriage only grows stronger, healthier, and more loving.

      • Cindy from United States says:

        I am in the same situation. I enjoy buying things for him. I am always a giver in this relationship. He told me the other day don’t do that anymore. I made plan for his birthday. He told me don’t do that again next time, although I sat on a Sunday afternoon for 4 hours watching football with him. I told him I’m tired of trying to do things for him but in return I get nothing.

  3. Julia says:

    (USA)  Tony, Hi! I totally agree with you about the communication differences between men and women. I would love to do things with my husband to help our marriage and build communication. However, when we do things that he likes, he gets so competitive, that it becomes an argument. I don’t pick up on things fast enough, I get criticized and called names, I watch him yell and cuss at his friends and he tells me I should drink alcohol more because it loosens me up. If I don’t feel comfortable sober doing activities with my husband, why should I do them at all? It is best to avoid conflict by doing something else, and wait patiently for the dust clouds to clear.

    I am praying that someday we can save our marriage and do things together that isn’t a constant battle. That is all I ask and I hope and pray that God will show us the way.

  4. Shivani says:

    (INDIA)  IT IS EASIER SAID DONE. If I do not agree with the terms of my husband he starts criticizing me and my family which includes my father, mother, brother, sister-in-law etc. or would end up hitting me, or critcizing me in front of his parents and family. I do not know when the dark clouds will move away and there will be happiness in life.

    • Akanksha says:

      (INDIA)  Hi Shivani, I completely understand what you are going through and want you to know (I honestly believe) that a great life is in store for all of us… The tips written in this article make sense, and I plan to implement them with my husband soon. “It is easier said than done” is the words that come to mind, that is true. Change is never easy unless we accept that we need to change for our own good.

      If we don’t change the way we communicate with our husbands we cannot expect to have different results. First, believe that you will have a great relationship with your husband and then make some changes step by step, day by day. You might not see results immediately, but do it on faith and refuse to give up. The silver lining of those dark clouds are there and you will be able to see them… Hope this helps… Akanksha

  5. Jen says:

    (USA)  I know this article is right. However, it is really hard to continue practicing this when the respect is not mutual. At this point in my marriage I feel depressed thinking that the only way for this to work is for me to shut up and agree with everything because how I feel or what I want is not important enough to him to merit his respect by listening and trying to understand my needs in this relationship.

    The worst thing about our situation is we are newly recommitted after an almost 2 year separation and I am quickly seeing things going back to the “old way”. I have made many changes in myself for which he does not credit me for, and continues to request change from me while he is not changing in the ways that I need him to the most.

    At this point if I try to talk to him it ends in an argument and I’m tired of arguing. I am a follower of this site and believe what is trying to be relayed here. I just wish he would take it as seriously as I do. He says he has read some of the things that I have asked him to, but he does not show it in his actions :(

  6. Shahram says:

    (U.S.A)  Hi, I read all articles and it was useful and I really enjoyed reading them. I’m a male who recently got separated after being married for 3 years. She is from my country Iran and came here 3 years ago. It was hard to bring her here in the U.S.A. But after she came and saw life here and is getting her citizenship.

    Things went into being a raw life and also I should say economically it has affected a lot in our marriage life too. I guess in the Iranian culture, a man has to provide and if a woman feels that she can provide by herself then at that time, marriage is no longer a marriage and she wants to get separated and live by herself.

    I’m really confused. My life got destroyed and moved to Las Vegas from California. I do not have any desire to have a relation with any woman ever. I think I’m a big failure in my second marriage. I really wanted to work and keep this marriage. Although, she told me to leave so I left. But I think no matter how hard it is right now and I hope for her. I think that I can save this marriage, although again, she said no. But I want believe that we can work on it and we can save it. Thanks again, Sharam

  7. Tina says:

    (KENYA)  I’ve just stumbled upon this site a few minutes ago, because my marriage of a decade is under real threat of heading to nowhere (God forbid). My husband and I are nolonger communicating with one another. All we have are shouting contests, or total shut-downs. I’ve tried to be really submissive, but this has led him to despising me, which he tells me to my face.

    I am now so stressed, almost to a point of breaking down. He doesn’t want us to sit and find solutions to our problems. If he does sit, he quickly loses interest and promises to change, to no avail! We’ve brought in 3rd parties, but he soon just dismisses all ‘our resolves’. All I am now left with is prayer, hoping that my God will at His own time touch both our hearts, so that the deep love that we still have for one another will prevail! Kind brothers, and sister in God, remember us in our prayers, as I will also remember you in mine.

  8. Amber says:

    (USA)  I read all of the articles on this site last night and I think that there are some really great ideas; however, it is difficult to put these into practice when my husband has no respect for me or my feelings. The only thing that I can do to avoid a conflict is just to completely agree with everything that he says and make no remarks about it at all, but that is not right and I believe that as long as I am respectful and understanding of his feelings, I am entitled to my opinion.

    About 99% of the time, I remain calm and respectful; however, he gets out of control: yelling and calling me names. We have three children and I feel guilty about our arguments that, at times, occur when they are in the house, but I never know when an argument wil arise because I feel that by attempting to discuss something (usually unimportant) in which I may disagree (dinner, for instance), would normally be ok to do in front of the kids, but turns into an argument somewhow.

    We have been married close to 9 years and at this point, although I love him very much, I feel that this marriage will never work. I feel disrespected and unloved and I despise the person that I am when he is around. I don’t want to hurt the kids by asking for a divorce, and honestly, I’m not sure that I am ready for a divorce as this man was the love of my life. But for a couple of years now, our marriage has steadily declined and although I’ve brought all of these problems to his attention, he seems to care less and less each day.

    I’ve prayed for an answer to the best course of action. I’ve prayed for happiness and repair in our marriage. I’ve prayed for strength and courage. So far, I am only more confused, and the feelings of hopelessness grow stronger each day.

  9. Amy says:

    (USA)  My husband wants nothing to do with me. We have been married 45 years and only had sex once in the entire 45 years. He went back to work the day after we were married and it was the midnight shift and stayed there for 40 years till he retired. Also to get away from me he moved to the basement and built himself a small apartment type thing. So we do not associate, have dinner, talk or sleep together.

    I have been so depressed, lonely, unwanted and unloved. I maybe should have left him but I do believe in our wedding vows. I try to be away from the house as much as possible. I go on vacation with our church group. He never has missed me, or asked where I’ve been. I just hope one day it will be over and God will take me away.

    • Mary says:

      (U.S.A.)  My heart aches for you, Amy. God wants much more for you. Begin with love for yourself. And remember God loves you. You know God wouldn’t want you in this situation. Have you got GOOD counseling on this subject? I would say it’s past time to live a happy life. God loves your husband but it sounds like he has some deep seated problems. If not, he would have worked on the situation (no sex for a guy for 45 years is not normal) or have left the marriage. God wants you to have life and to live it abundantly.

      Get going girl, and make a life for yourself. Maybe if you left he could get help. It sounds like you’re both due. I could give you a bunch of scriptures but you know God doesn’t want us in something this unhealthy if we can do something about it! Get up and get happy! Life is full of joy and you deserve some in your personal life!

  10. Elizabeth says:

    (USA)  This was so hurtful to read. I am a believer in Christ and have hosted the Emerson Eggerich His Love Her Respect Marriage Seminar so I am all about pleasing God in the Marriage union. Firstly Your husband is responcible and accountable to God for the home (your Pastor can verify this). Secondly, Christ set up marriages to honor him. You must ask yourself how is yours honoring him by not serving, worshiping and sacrificing to one another?

    God commanded in Eph. 5 Women to Respect our husbands and they are COMMANDED to Love us. They are also in scripture told to be understanding of us. If this is not happening in your marriage, bottom line you are not bound to him. If he is WILLING to give you a decree of divorcement, take it! If he is not, scripture asks if we can live with our situation that is your call. You obviously mentally are not where God wants you. I recommend you see someone to learn to grow in self and the Lord. No one says you cannot recommit to him. Praying for you.

  11. Uma says:

    (ITALY) Hello, I have been married for just seven months. Already the fights and arguments are a regular thing with us, resulting in my husband hitting me a couple of days back. But of course that happened when arguments led to insulting our families, foul language by him, and after which I went out of control shouting and running out of the house threatening to kill myself after which he hit me once to bring me back to senses.

    I know this is very unhealthy. I just want us to be a normal couple. Does every couple fight? I have seen so many couples just calm and so happy, like they never fight. And please tell me how to sort these differences out and be loving and caring, like before. We love each other a lot. In fact he is the love of my life, it was my dream to marry him. Most fights started because we can’t agree with each other. And one blame leads to another… so on. I don’t know how to communicate with him in a way he is interested or engage him in a conversation he likes.

    Is it possible to forget all this happened and lead a normal happy life? Or will these memories scar us? I am willing to move past the whole thing and start afresh. Because we have a long, long way to go. My husband hates himself for hitting me, although it was just once. And hates me for making it go to that extent. How to make each other forget and forgive. Can we have a loving trusting relationship In the future?

    • Bridget says:

      (CANADA) Hello Uma. Your comment makes me sad. If your husband truly asks forgiveness, and you give it, I don’t see why you cannot move forward. However. Arguing and fighting after only seven months does not sound good to me. It is hard for me to understand how people who love each other can yell at each other the way you describe. Under normal circumstances, love should prevail and you should be able to yeild in your discussions and allow respect for the other person’s opinion.

      Do you have such philosophical differences that you must argue so much? If you have very different philosphical differences then you need to discuss it. Perhaps you love each other but perhaps your differences are too much. Do you know why you love this person? Are you trying to change each other by arguing?

      You must look each other in the eyes and determine if you really do love one another, because I don’t hear much love here. Good luck and God bless.

    • Cindy Wright says:

      Dear Uma, Please know that while seven months seems like an eternity when you are fighting with your husband, in reality it’s not a very long time in the span of a married life. You are still in the early stages of marriage, which is a HUGE time of adjusting. Please realize that. Something that Diane Sollee (a marriage expert) says, is true, “The public is so ill-prepared for and ill-informed about marriage —they don’t realize that the first two years of marriage is the time when a new civilization is hammered out. We mislead couples by calling it the ‘honeymoon’ phase. We send them off without the basic understanding of what to expect or the skills they’ll need to lay the foundation for a life-long marriage. It’s cruel and barbaric —we’re still in the dark ages when it comes to marriage. Just getting the basic stats out to the public is the first step. Explaining what the research has found about WHY the first two years have the highest failure rate is the next step. And, teaching couples —equipping them what to do about it —how to improve their odds —that’s the key.”

      Uma, you and your husband are not unusual in the way you’re beginning your marriage. That’s sad, but true. Even though you look at other couples and they seem “calm and so happy” you have to realize that you and your husband probably look like that to others. But are you? No. And I can tell you that they probably aren’t either. It’s what people do. They don’t usually show their darker sides, while in public. So don’t fall for that false front stuff.

      You and your husband need to become students of marriage and students of each other and students of what it takes to resolve conflict in healthy ways. You WILL have conflict. It’s just how you approach it and resolve it –how you still treat each other in respectful ways even though you disagree with each other –THAT is what will help you to build a good marriage together. And also, it’s important to do things together –be proactive in doing things that build good memories together. Those good memories will help you to better weather the difficult times.

      I encourage you to go through our web site. This is a marriage education center. Go through the topic of “Stages of Marriage” –particularly “The Marriage Map.” That will show you that what you are going through is pretty normal stuff BUT you are headed in a dangerous direction. If you keep going down this road, you will destroy your relationship. Also, go into the “Newlywed” topic –particularly the quotes, to start with. You’ll see a part of what you need to learn. And then go through other topics on the web site. If your husband won’t go through them with you, do it yourself. Just absorb what you can and perhaps share little snippets of what you’re learning with him here and there. That’s what I did. I figured if my husband wouldn’t be the hero to save our marriage, I would join God in starting the process myself, learning what I needed to learn –applying what I saw was needed. I figured I’d start with me and see where it went from there.

      Ruth Graham, the wife of evangelist Billy Graham once said, “I realized that my job was to love Billy; it was God’s job to make him good.” And that’s what I came to realize. I joined God in working on what I needed to do to be a good wife and would see what God would do with Steve as I prayed for him and loved on him. It’s funny how it worked in that eventually, Steve’s behavior eventually changed for the better too. And now, he’s VERY pro-active in seeing out information to improve our marriage and the marriages of others. But it took some time.

      Keep in mind that you promised to be married to your husband for life. You have the time to put in, to learn how to better approach marriage. It’s not as “easy” or as “natural” as people claim it should be. Look at the divorce statistics. They expose the fact that “easy” and “natural” is a myth. It takes a lot of applying yourself to succeed in marriage –learning how to build a life together with all of the emotional baggage and false expectations, misguided notions, lack of skill-sets in knowing how to nurture a marriage and communicate in healthy ways, and grow a great sex life, and such. But let me tell you, if you become a student of marriage and of your spouse, you are headed in a great direction.

      There are a lot of great quotes in the “Newlywed” topic (and others). I pulled out just one –hoping it will inspire you to read more. This one is from Dr Debbie Cherry. She wrote, “The early years of marriage can be just as stressful and difficult… You’re trying to do one of the most difficult tasks of all time: become one flesh. Blending two people with different backgrounds, learning experiences, family histories, and expectations into one marriage is nothing short of a miracle. Maybe that’s why God must be in the center of it to really make it work. But even with God right smack dab in the middle of the two of you, there will be clashes, changes, concessions, and compromises. That’s what this stage of the marriage is for —to spend time developing a strong connection between the two of you and to start learning and applying the skills that will become the foundation of a strong marriage that can really go the distance. It’s about learning to “leave and cleave” and becoming one flesh.”

      I hope you and your husband will do what it takes to learn how to resolve your conflicts in healthier ways and grow your marriage into the best it can be. I’m believing in you and for you that you will start the process. “May the Lord direct your heart into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance.” (2 Thessalonians 3:5)

  12. Uma says:

    (ITALY) Hi Bridget, Thanks. You have given me a lot to think. Taking your advice, I guess I’ll have a heart to heart discussion with my husband, and get to the root of this.

    To cut a long story short it was really a twist of fate that brought my husband and I together. I don’t want to give up. I feel maybe if we tide over this it will take us to the next phase of the relationship where we mutually respect our differences and live harmoniously.

    We will try to sort it out. Prayers and patience will help with anything right? I really love him and I am very sorry for all that happened. I am willing to forgive myself and him and live amiably. I think we could reach a common ground where both are happy.

    I seek the Almighty’s blessings and grace. I don’t know if it would work, but I want to give it an honest try -with sincere hope that all’s well soon and will remain like that always.

    This is a very good, decent and helpful forum. I really appreciate the people who created this and the people who write. Thousands of people might be benefitted by this. Thanks everyone!

  13. Uma says:

    (ITALY) Dear Cindy, I cannot express my gratitude to you in words. I really appreciate your patient comments. And your guidance based on examples from your own life. Your words, and the article, just opened up a whole new world to me. I understand now, how important it is for couples to be educated for living a successful married life. Thanks to this forum for busting some myths that mislead people. I was relieved to read that many newlyweds go through such situations, and that it’s just another phase, which will pass if we are well equipped with the right knowledge to resolve things amicably.

    I loved the idea that my husband and I should be students of each other, of marriage. I believe fully that we are meant to stay through thick and thin, and that marriage is a holy institution.

    I read the articles you recommended and went through the other topics on this website, as well. It is very informative and useful. I have already started to adopt those measures in my life sincerely. I could not get my husband to read them, though I read out relevant snippets as you suggested. It worked! He actually understood after listening to me!

    God is truly great. Implicit faith In The Almighty really works. My husband and I have resolved to work this through. Another amazing thing is, that he actually suggested I read to him some articles which may help us. I was stunned. My prayers have been answered.

    I am very grateful to this website and all the people contributing. I strongly recommend people who are reading this to read the topics in this website. Almost all the topics in married life are covered. It will certainly guide them. The ideas are practical at the same time in good faith with God. Thanks again. :-) God bless.

  14. Sharon says:

    (NIGERIA) I like the writes up.

  15. MERCY says:

    (NIGERIA) God is still faithful! When I read or hear what people go through in marriages, it breaks my heart, but I like to tell everyone going through hell in their marriages, that there is hope in the future. I am a living testimony.

    I got married and after 3 years of torment and horror, I packed up. Within those few years, it looked as if my world was coming to an end. I smiled on the outside but inside I was a fountain of tears that never ran dry. I was living with the father of my child, yet I was a single parent. People would see me and wish they were like me, but deep inside, I was shouting for a change of status. Believe me, I know the pain of every article I have just read.

    In the midst of my darkness, sleepless nights and pains, I spent several nights talking to God, praying my way through. At a point, I stopped praying for God to heal my marriage and I started praying for God to deliver me (the situation was beyond repair, as the man I married was not interested in making the marriage work). God heard my cry, took me out of that marriage like he delivered the children of Israel from bondage in the land of Egypt. Immediately after I left his house, one of his girl friends moved in with him.

    After living apart, he came after me (like Pharaoh went after the children of Israel). He went diabolical and fighting me spiritually. He had a monitoring device where he monitors me and will send me text messages of what I am doing on a daily basis. Anybody that attempts to come close to me, he tells them they will die if they don’t leave me. In one of his text messages, he said to me, as long as he is alive I will not remarry and I will not find happiness, that he will fight me with his life.

    Dear readers, my Bible says God is a consuming fire. I cried to God to fight for me, because I was helpless and God answered me again. He did not know he was fighting God and not me. He thought my life was in his hands but little did he know that the evil he was planning for me will back fire on his head. The grave he prepared for me, he was buried in it. Now I am free and my freedom is heavenly.

    My beloved reader, please know that God will not watch you suffer. God is a loving and caring God. He loves you. I pray God will open your eyes to the steps to take to make that marriage work and I also pray that God will guide our steps to know when to move on with our lives and when to hold on.

    Right now, develop a sound relationship with God, let Him show you the purpose for your life. When the love of men fails (which will always fail), the love of God is there to see you through. Do not feel unloved because that is not true. God loves you and wants to talk with you to show you the way out. There is always a way out.

    God has not only healed my heart, he changed my heart (because my heart was damaged beyond repair). Now I am whole and emotionally sound. He has also called me into a ministry. 2 Cor 1:2-4, I have an instruction from God to comfort those who are in trouble, with the same comfort with which I have been comforted by God.

    God said to me one day, “I have a spare life, no matter how destroyed or damaged the life might look, I can replace any life with a brand new one.” I believe God is saying that to someone today. I love you all and my heart goes out to every wounded soul out there. I will stand in prayer for everyone in need of God intervention in their marriages and the same God that answered me in the time of trouble will answer them. Jesus is Lord!

  16. Amy says:

    (USA) All I can say is my husband and I haven’t sat down for a decent conversation for almost 45 years. I was told the day after we were married that there would be no more sex, and that I wasn’t to talk to him or bother him. When I’ve tried he just walks away and goes outside and if I follow him he’ll just gets in his car and drives away.

    • MERCY says:

      (NIGERIA) Dear Amy, Don’t be afraid of the future, move on with your life, don’t waste away. Pray and ask God to guide your steps. Here are 4 reasons why God created marriage:

      1. for companionship (it is not good that man should leave alone, Genesis 2:18-24)
      2. to make us a better person (two are better than one, Ecc 4:9-12)
      3. to fulfill our sexual desire (1 Cor 7:1-6)
      4. to have godly offspring (Mal 2:15)

      Amy, sit down and look at your marriage. For 45 years, has that marriage met up with the standard of God? THERE IS HOPE IN THE FUTURE.

  17. Gold says:

    (NIGERIA) I have been married 20 yrs. It has taken me 15 yrs to to learn how important respect is to a man. It has been a difficult journey but the Holy Spirit was there with me all along. No marriage can survive the storm without the HS!
    I took baby steps an 1 day at a time. I am happy to say I love where my relationship is now. It can get better.
    The hardest part was getting rid of the FEELING that I was the only one doing something abt the relationship and the FEELING that it was unfair that I was the one who had to change. Once I got thru those it became easier to navigate the storm.
    I would love women everywhere to own up to their role in getting their relationship to where it is now. Since the relationship did not get to where it is now in a day, expect that it will take twice the time to get it back on course. Sometimes it will seam that your moves are not working… Patience.

    Must haves to suceed on the journey are: openness to the leading of the Holy Spirit, A group of praying women who believe with uyou and your willingness to be a help mate.

  18. Surbhi says:

    (INDIA) Hi, I definitely agree with Tony, that a woman should accompany the husband in the activities or his interested areas. But sir, even men also have some rights towards his wife. Even he should take some effort to make his soulmate happy.

    I am not married so I cannot say more but I have been in a deep relationship for 4 yrs. My relationship was going smoothly but there are several things, which really makes it complicated. The very first thing is the same, that only I make efforts to make him happy. Why can’t he? I agree that he takes me shopping, he spends on me, but these things are not enough to build a nice relationship. I only need his entire love. How could I?

    • Tony from United States says:

      As I said above, those things are addressed in the articles targeting men. Since you are not married, if he doesn’t accommodate you, why do you remain with him?

  19. Navjot says:

    (CANADA) My in-laws behavior with me was not good. Even that they kept me in their house as I was their servent. Their daughters also live with them and me and my elder sister-in-law had to do all household chores. And my mother in law and father in law did not gave me a permission to go out and work anywhere. But I was well educated. They even mentally tortured me and my parents who are in India. Two months before because of some reasons I called the police, picked up my stuff and left my home. Me and my husband still love each other. We always talk to each other on phone. I want to live with him and he too wants to live with me. The problem is that he has no guts and he can’t say to his parents that we want to live together and his parents already told him that if he will leave their house he can’t come back, even when they (his parents) die. But my husband is my life. I will die without him. I’m living with someone knowing me. But I can’t stay with them forever. I am alone in this country. Please help me to solve this problem. I am in so much stress this time. I don’t want to lose my husband. Please do something. I want him back within a week. I will be very thankful to you.

  20. Beth says:

    (AUSTRALAI) I am glad I came across this as I don’t feel alone, but I feel sad as I see no solution when many of us have same issues with partners/husbands.

    I’m 38 and we have been trying for a baby for 2 years. Now I have asked him to leave the home (mine before we met) as I am so upset, so sad, sick of been abused, disrespected and doing everything plus our property is a discrace. He has made it look like a dump and won’t fix things he broke or started projects like driveway left for 6 months no driveway.. I was abused this morning because I used the thin blankets last night and he couldn’t sleep. He is on workers comp because he had an accident so he does work. I do I’m primary income earner and I wake up to be so heartlessly abused over a blanket. I’ve had enough and I can’t see him changing.

    I’m so sad I may never have children now but I’d rather be childless and alone that stay with him and maybe have children in a very distructive relationship. He never ever seems to care about me and always gets what he wants and if he doesn’t he threatens me with leaving or never doing anything again.. he never sees what I do for him/us and the finacial support I have given him over 4 years. He acts like he is the one hard done by and says I can’t get it better elsewhere.

    I hate to say it but I wish I never met him :(

  21. Spriy says:

    (INDIA) My husband is always telling me to leave our house and go to my parents. We don’t even share the same bed because he tells me to sleep elsewhere. We have a five month old baby and before I was pregnant, I was in a high paying job. Now I’m staying at home with my baby without any company in the suburbs. I have no one to talk to and even when I try to leave when my husband asks me to, he does not let me. I am tired of the constant chasing after and rejection. He tells me to go home once a day everyday. Despite all of this, I find it hard to put my foot down and decide to leave. I feel terrible when I see myself so weak when other women who were my peers at work and school are so independent and headstrong. What do I do? I need strength to live without this rejection and make a difficult decision of leaving my husband.

  22. Sam says:

    (NIGERIA) Very useful indeed. I really need a private discussion with you (the writer) on personal relationship issues. Many marriages around me are breaking because of communication gaps. A friend told me few days ago that he doesn’t talk to his wife unless he wants to have sex with her. I wonder how miserable that woman’s life will be. Please, sincerely I need a private discussion. God bless you.

    • Cindy Wright says:

      Hi Sam. I wish I could say that you could have a “private discussion” with me (I’m the writer) on “personal relationship issues,” as you requested. But honestly, my husband Steve and I are not counselors. We can’t help you in the same way that a counselor can help you. The best we can give is posted on this web site and on our Facebook page, through Twitter, and in the Marriage Messages we send out each week. We have to leave the one-on-one counseling sessions to those who are trained to do so; we aren’t. I wish we could give more than we do, but we really can’t.

      All I can tell you to do is to lean into is becoming a student of marriage and a student of your wife. Ask God to help you to learn what you need to, and APPLY what you’re learning (that is KEY in this whole thing, because you can have all the tools you need right at your fingertips, but if you don’t USE them, they will not do you any good). Marriage is tough stuff. Falling in love is easy… it’s staying in love that’s the hard part, and doing what it takes so that when you don’t feel very loving, you apply yourself all the more and eventually you fall back in love. My husband and I have been marriage for over 41 years. We have fallen in and out of love with each other at various times… we’ve had some rough times, we’ve weathered. But I can tell you, it’s worth it. We’re more in love now than ever before. Even so, we have to keep working at it.

      On this web site we’ve posted A LOT of great communication tools, inspiring and helpful articles and testimonies, quotes, links to other web sites, plus comments from others, which can help you. Please pray, ask the Holy Spirit to guide, reveal and empower you as you read and glean through the information provided. Don’t be like your friend. That’s truly an awful approach to marriage. That’s not what God would want for our marriages. Marriage is a vehicle God can use to help us to grow up and mature and stretch as individuals and together –learning how to love in ways that we never could have otherwise. It’s not all about us and our needs. As you read through this web site, you will see that better. I hope you will. I hope you will apply yourself to learn more about marriage and your spouse and yourself and how you can learn how to love and communicate as a grown-up. Marriage is for grown-ups.

      I pray God’s best for you as you apply yourself. I wish we could offer “private” sessions to you and to others, but hopefully, what you discover as you apply yourself to what we make available will help you more than we could offer you privately. I say this with all sincerity: “May the Lord direct your heart into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance.” (2 Thessalonians 3:5) “And this is my prayer [truly, it is]: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ –to the glory and praise of God.” (Philippians 1:9-11)

  23. Maribell from United States says:

    Please get my husband to listen to me and no other women. This is why he gets confused, commits infidelity and wants to leave. May I bring smile to his face and when I call let him appreciate me and my love. I’m his wife. We love each other but going through a difficult time. Pray for us… Lord, please.

  24. MR from United States says:

    Dear Lord, Please get my husband RR to connect to me. Help him. Guide him to care for me more. Let him have more feelings towards me. Let him be compassionate, loving and helpful towards me and the house. I pray to you AMEN…

  25. Vanessa from United States says:

    I’m surprised by the lack of people not advising these women about physical abuse… your marriage is a reflection of Christ’s love and the church. Your husband is supposed to protect your honor. He is a nurturer and provider. The scripture about turning your other cheek was not intended for us as wives to let our husbands abuse us physically. We are His precious daughters, His princesses… He would never want a man to strike us. I would advise to leave that situation until that problem can be worked out.

    I’m not the happiest w my relationship, I feel lonely, neglected & frustrated a lot of times to where my flesh wants something more… divorce even. But, you see regardless of where (court room or church) I made that promise to God to love my husband no matter what… that’s what I’ll continue to do, because I love God. When you also made that promise to Him, you both were joined… one flesh. How could you separate one flesh without it being murder? Divorce is death, death of a marriage… trust in God people. He works all things for the good of those who love Him and those that are called according to His purpose. God bless you all in life, and in your marriages. I love you.

    • Sariahson from United States says:

      Thank you for that. Perhaps you can help to explain what to do when there’s no connection left. Or bond. I’m feeling lost. Just being honest.

      • Rayna from United States says:

        Hi Cindy, I like your website. I’m having trouble in my relationship with my husband and I found some great ideas from your website. You told previous people that you wish to help others regarding relationships with their spouses. I believe maybe you and your husband are being guided by God to become Marriage Counselors.

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