I have been with my husband for over 5 years now. I think I made a mistake in marrying him. He’s handsome, successful, nice, funny, and an all around good person. When we first met I never felt a connection or spark but kept talking with him because he was nice. I think I liked him a lot or maybe even loved him at one point but I don’t think I ever actually fell in love. We are such good friends and the thought of hurting him makes me upset. The thing is, I knew I shouldn’t have married him but I thought I could learn to love him. It seems like my attraction now to him is just like a friend. Sex is almost not bearable. I feel absolutely nothing for him and I’m scared I actually never did. I am looking for advice form people who have felt like me before. Did your attraction ever come back? Marriage is a commitment and I don’t want to divorce but I don’t see how my feelings will change. Can I learn to love him? I know I made a bad decision but I’m trying my best to make it work. I need help and advice.
View related questions: divorce, fell in love, spark
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A female reader, Youcannotbeserious + ♥, writes (9 March 2019):
Don’t stay with him just because the thought of hurting him by leaving him upsets you. In doing that you are hurting not only him but yourself as well. You are young. I assume he is too. You have the rest of your lives ahead of you. You both deserve to be with someone who truly loves you and who you love in return. Yes, you may have made a mistake in marrying him, but that does not mean you have to spend the rest of your life paying for it. If sex is only just “bearable” now, trust me it will get to the point where it is UNbearable. He doesn’t deserve to be with someone who sees having sex with him as a chore, and YOU don’t deserve to be in this situation either. Hard as it is bound to be – there will probably be tears on both sides – you need to admit you believe you have made a mistake and work out how to separate as quickly, cleanly and kindly as possible. You have already made ONE mistake. Don’t make another by refusing to face up to your mistake.
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A male reader, WiseOwlE + ♥, writes (8 March 2019):
I commend and respect you for your honesty. The topic is deep, and quite unusual for someone so young. I like the question. Please indulge me to give a response from my own heart and feelings.Let’s consider this. In many cultures around the world, and even in biblical-times; marriages were arranged. Yet these people remained together for a lifetime. Who knows what holds such marriages together. There are a few things that do come to mind. Obligation, a need for security, children, to maintain the approval of their parents; and/or because they hold some responsibility to uphold peace or national-security, by joining or merging family dynasties. I will be brutally honest. A great number of marriages occur; but the two people don’t both love each other. I’ve known people so pressured by their parents; they’ve asked the first person who would say yes to a marriage proposal. Their parents were so overbearing, they all but blackmailed them; or coerced them by making accusations questioning their sexual-orientation. They pressured by showing more love or favoritism towards their married-siblings. Yes, cruel parents with agendas force people into unloving marriages! Unexpectedly, sometimes they flourish and love blossoms.My Kuwaiti friend’s father dangles his fortune over my friend’s head; and has a lovely woman chosen for him. They chose his sister’s husband; but as it turns-out, they’ve always cared for each other from childhood. They just had a beautiful baby-girl. He intends to do his duty to please his parents.Many women want a fairy-tale wedding, to wear a man’s last name, and to have children; so they will pursue marriage with no real consideration for love. Having more concern about beating the biological-clock; and to keep-up with their sisters and girlfriends, who are already married.Tired of dating, being disappointed in men, and feeling rejected. Wanting security, and being taken care of. So many women can’t openly admit it as you have; but they justify their marriages by telling themselves they love him. Truth be told, he is a sperm-donor, provider, and he makes them a wife. He is functional and necessary. A means to an end. So don’t feel you’re alone about that. Desperate, lonely, or determined women sometimes do what they think they have to do to have it all. Even if they don’t really love him. The mission is to find a man, and to keep him. Love is secondary, a bonus, or optional. Even incidental, be that the case. Why do men do it? For totally different reasons. To prove our manhood, provide an heir, to have someone to cook, clean, and take care of us. For sex on-demand; or to possess someone beautiful as our own; which appeals to our ego, a trophy, and as a symbol of our success. Love may occur later, be one-sided, or be faked for appearances. People who love each other go through cycles of deep affection and waning-affection as times passes. The roving-eye sets-in. Love goes through challenges, strain, stagnation, outside-temptations, and attacks that can make it seem absent. It becomes less evident as a living-emotion under certain circumstances. Overshadowed by anger, or selfishness. Sometimes you’ve been with a person so long, that you still stop and wonder if you really made the absolute right choice? What could you be missing, or who did you turn-away that could have been better? You married very young. So you may have rushed into marriage; because of many typically ill-conceived notions and misconceptions young people have about the institution of marriage. Having misguided perceptions of what true-love is. Having no clue what it is, or what to do with it.Marriages are often an escape from poverty, a means to citizenship, freedom for horrid family-relationships, refuge from abuse; or a shortcut to wealth and prosperity. The only way most religions will allow two people to live together, have sex, and have children.You said some lovely things about a person you think you don’t love. You still consider him a friend. In marriage, and most long-term relationships; we hit this stage. Passion and sex fade, you become complacent, or dully-domesticated.Domestic-life gets mundane, predictable, or humdrum; and you start to feel like you’re missing-out on life. You miss your freedom. Then you guiltily question these feelings. I can relate to them.I felt that way, a few times with my partner of 28 years. It would come and go; but deep-down inside, the love was cherished and unchanged. Love could be so subdued, it was like it never happened. He died of cancer, and it became more realized than ever; how much I adored and cherished loving him. I feel no guilt for the times I didn’t think I did. I know from maturity and growth; it’s just how love and life works. We change and we grow. We evolve, or we fail.What do you think that it is that compels you to honor your commitment in spite of these changed-feelings? We don’t always understand our feelings. Sometimes we misinterpret what we feel when life becomes too challenging; or just because we get bored. We can have a disagreement or disappointment that cuts so deep; we shut-down and go deaf. We become calloused to our partner’s feelings and concerns. We refuse to giveback, and withhold something they need. We want to feel nothing. We welcome the numbness. We need time for retrospection and to reassess our feelings. To validate their sincerity; and to come to terms whether we have been fair to the person who loves us. We wonder if we are worthy?We even start to wonder, is this the best it ever gets?If the compulsion to stay is so strong you can’t let-go; go with that feeling. See where it takes you. If the lack of sexual-desire and indifference seems to get worse; then you have to realize those as true-feelings. Free him to find someone who possesses the feelings he wants and deserves. By the same token, you can pursue the kind of relationship that might be more loving and more of what you need.You can only love, honor, and devote yourself to someone who can bring-out those feelings deep from within you. You have to know yourself, and be mature enough to understand your feelings. Be honest with yourself, and the people you have taken trust and stolen hearts from. Don’t let selfishness or lust to pursue romance outside the marriage, be the driving force that compels you to make a huge mistake.I may be wrong, but I’m sensing you’ve met someone making you question what you feel. Marrying at such a young age; this is bound to happen.
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A female reader, anonymous, writes (8 March 2019):
You are so young that I wonder why you DID marry him..? You had years ahead of you so why did you choose this particular man, when you had plenty of time to meet someone else? I think unless we know this then we can’t really answer your request for help.
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A female reader, mystiquek + ♥, writes (8 March 2019):
I believe many people are in loveless marriages, for all different kinds of reasons. It all depends on the 2 people and what they both want/need and what they are getting out of the marriage as to whether it will work or not. I did love my ex husband when we married but over time he became an abusive alcoholic and I fell totally out of love with him. I got to the point where I couldn’t stand to be in the same room with him, hear his voice and although we had been together for 16 years I knew I couldn’t bear to stand married to him for any longer. There was just nothing left inside of me. I had grown to hate who he had become. If your husband is good to you and kind it is possible that perhaps you could learn to love him although if you haven’t in 5 years time I am not sure why you suddenly would? Do you want to live the rest of your life like this? Are you getting enough out of the marriage to stay? These are some of the questions you need to ask yourself. Is it fair to you? To him? I want to be in love. I want to love and care about someone and share my life with them in every way. I was not about to settle for anything less. I walked away from what people thought was a great marriage, a nice home, cars, great job and security because I couldn’t keep waking up every morning being sad and despondent not seeing things get any better. I could have stayed married and been comfortable for the rest of my life but I would not have been happy inside. The comforts weren’t worth it to me. I left. I started totally over. I found someone new to love and that loved me and we have now been together almost 18 years and I am more happy than I have ever been.My parents were married over 53 years. They fell out of love with each other but stayed together. They were MISERABLE together but refused to divorce. I never could understand that. My father died moments after their last fight..even at the end my mother couldn’t be kind to him. Who wants to live like that??Think it over carefully. Life is short. How do you want to live yours?
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