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Husband Never Says "I Love You"

  
  
  
  

Husband Never Says I Love YouA wife I've been working with in marriage counseling designed for men told me yesterday that last week her husband asked her for a hug for the first time in their 15 year marriage

I know she can relate to these excerpts from the article Advice: He Never Says "I Love You" from Psychology Today

Can you relate to this wife?

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      • He is a very nice guy, supporting us, including paying my costs because l do not work in order to heed immigration laws.
      • But there is one thing that has bothered me throughout our years of marriage: He finds it difficult to tell me he loves me. He does everything right, except this.
      • Even now, at the end of our phone conversations, he never tells me he misses me or loves me. But when he phones the children, particularly the youngest, he tells them he loves them and misses them.
      • How do l overcome this? I used to tell him that l love him, but I stopped.

Here's the advice she got from Psychology Today:

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      • Actions speak loudly, and your husband's actions suggest that he cares deeply about you and your children.
      • Not everyone is equally comfortable declaring "I love you," and it may be especially hard for someone to declare it to a telephone. He demonstrates his love.
      • Many people grow up in families and in cultures where an unwritten rule seems to be that the adults-and especially men-don't openly declare their feelings or even display affection openly. And yet with children, they may be entirely different.
      • Just because he can't say what you'd like to hear doesn't mean you should withhold what comes naturally to you. This is one area where reciprocity doesn't work. When you start measuring what you give you start constricting feelings, and that actually becomes corrosive to your own sense of self and to the relationship.
      • Just because your husband can't say "I love you" doesn't mean he doesn't want to hear it from you, especially when he is giving you so much.

I disagree with the part of the Psychology Today response that says that this husband "can't" say "I love you."  I would change that to he's not comfortable, he doesn't know how, or just that he doesn't say "I love you" -- yet.  I do counseling with men that this describes, but they can and do develop the ability to say "I love you" and make this habit with the right help. 

Love is not just a feeling, it's a choice and an action, and one that is learned practice.

What part of this can you relate to?

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Comments

After my wife and I divorced I can recall having been told by her mother that the reason she decided to divorce is because I didn't tell her I loved her enough. Maybe she didn't know it but nothing could have been further from the truth. 
 
 
 
Although there was obviously something more going on, it seems having not said "I love you" often enough was a valid reason for the way she felt. 
 
 
 
I will always regret my silence in that respect and I can only wish that I could have known then, what I know now.  
 
Posted @ Saturday, March 27, 2010 9:56 PM by Mark Good
Mark - That's an unfortunate lesson. Thanks for sharing what happened to your marriage. I hope it will challenge other guys not to keep silent and let the same thing happen to them. 
 
Posted @ Thursday, April 08, 2010 10:54 PM by Kurt Smith, MFT, AFC
I come from a family that always hugged and kissed. And said "sweet dreams" along with a good night kiss. But my husband and I never do. But he does kiss me good bye when he leaves for work. Puzzling why. wondering after 20 years of marriage if he is tried of the relationship? Any answers.
Posted @ Tuesday, September 27, 2011 3:00 PM by jewel
I HAVE BEEN MARRIED FOR 35YRS,,AND I TELL MY HUSBAND ALL THE TIME THAT I LOVE YOU, BUT HE RARELY SAYS IT BACK,HE IS A GOOD MAN,WORKS HARD PAYS ALL THE BILLS, KEEPS MY CAR CHECKED OUT WHEN I AM GOING OUT,BUT I WOULD LIKE TO HEAR THOSE WORDS ONCE IN AWHILE,ANY COMMENTS OR SUGGESTIONS, E-MAIL CATA@BLOMAND.NET
Posted @ Tuesday, January 01, 2013 10:10 AM by teresa
My husband has never said I love you! In fact we don't even talk to each other. We have been married on paper only, we live in the same house but not together. He lives in our basement and I upstairs. Its been this way for 45+ years, we have no family, kids, sex nothing. He live like a sloppy hermit and with no hope of ever changing.
Posted @ Friday, August 02, 2013 6:11 PM by Amy
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