6 Min Read
- Signs A Marriage Is Over For Men
- #1 - He's Unhappy
- #2 - He's Withdrawing
- #3 - He’s Justifying
- #4 - He’s Looking Elsewhere
- #5 - He’s Preparing
- What To Take Away
There’s no way to know for sure what our partner is thinking. Often, they won’t tell us. But even when they do, we can’t be certain that what they’re saying is really the truth. So, at Guy Stuff we frequently get asked by wives what are the signs your marriage is over for him.
Signs are really symptoms. While they can be a problem in and of themselves, they really are an indication of a deeper problem.
For instance, having anger issues is certainly a problem, but it’s also a symptom because the pattern of getting angry is happening for a reason.
The signs your marriage is over for him are symptoms too.
They can indicate your husband is done being married to you, or they could mean something else, such as he doesn’t know how to cope with negative feelings, so he thinks ending the marriage will make them go away (usually not).
Here’s an example –
My husband and I have been together 8 years. Married 4. He started drinking again shortly before we got married. As soon as we were married and got pregnant with my daughter he started talking to other women and our sex life went downhill. He quit drinking 2 weeks ago but our sex life still is non existent. I don't want to cry around people but every night I find myself sobbing! I know my marriage is over for him and every time I try to talk to him about it he changes the subject! The first few years were incredible. Best sex ever. He was so considerate to my thoughts and feelings. As soon as I got pregnant and said I do everything changed.” -Michele
Michele is taking his behavior as signs the marriage is over for him, and maybe it is. But she’s also making an assumption. His behavior could be symptoms of something else.
Signs A Marriage Is Over For Men
In my more than 20 years of counseling men I’ve identified 5 areas that may indicate your marriage is over for him. Below I’ll describe each one and give you several examples of the signs to look for.
Caution – Any of these issues can change. And none of them are certainties that a marriage is over. As I said, there can be other reasons for them too. And just because he’s thinking about ending your marriage doesn’t mean he’ll actually do it, or that what he’s thinking or feeling can’t change. I know this is true because I counsel men every day and help them change.
Note – While this is a list about men, nearly all of these signs your marriage is over for him can be signs for women too.
#1 – He’s Unhappy
The number one reason people end a marriage is because they’re unhappy and believe their relationship is the reason. But it’s almost always more specific than that – my spouse is the cause of my unhappiness.
Signs He’s Unhappy
- There’s no interest in sex. For most men sex is really important. I work with men who don’t love or even like their partners, but will still have sex with them. So, if your man doesn’t want sex, that’s a sign of something big, like he’s thinking your marriage is over.
- He’s angry, irritable, or resentful, or all 3. Unhappiness in men usually translates into outward behavior that shows it.
- He’s having a midlife crisis. One of the most common aspects of midlife crisis is running away from your relationship and partner.
- He’s depressed. Feeling unhappy and down typically go together. And depressed is just another word for it. If he thinks your marriage is the cause, then he may also be thinking your marriage is over for him.
#2 – He’s Withdrawing
Withdrawing is not only a response to thinking your marriage is over, but it’s also a way to make it happen. When the connection is gone, even if you helped cause it, then it’s easy to believe it’s over.
Signs He’s Withdrawing
- There’s no more togetherness. You don’t spend time together or do anything together anymore. The end result is that you both feel like roommates.
- You don’t talk. Okay, you probably still communicate about who’s taking your son to school, but not about anything of substance, and certainly not about your relationship or how you each feel about it.
- He doesn’t want to be alone with you. This can be a sign your marriage is over for him. This could be going out to dinner where it will be just the two of you, watching a show together, or even doing something like a household project together.
- He’s disengaged and not interested in anything having to do with you. This can mean not only is there no talking, but also no arguing or fighting. He doesn’t even have a feeling or opinion anymore (at least not that he’ll tell you).
#3 – He’s Justifying
When people decide their marriage is over, they look for reasons to justify the decision. This is not only so they can explain it to others, but also so they can avoid feeling any guilt or personal responsibility.
Signs He’s Justifying
- He tells you – “I love you, but am not in love with you anymore.” Or, “I can’t change it, that’s just how I feel.”
- He questions being together. This can be questioning if you’re really meant to be together, whether you make a good couple, or even if he made the right decision marrying you in the first place.
- He complains about you more. Complaints become more frequent or more intense in how he feels about them. For example, “I just can’t be with someone who leaves things laying around the house.”
- He brings up the past. When past history keeps coming up and gets embellished, exaggerated, or outright changed, that can be a sign he’s trying to justify his belief your marriage is over.
- He’s not respectful. This can vary from just not thinking about you, to not caring about your feelings, to being demeaning, critical, and using put-downs.
#4 – He’s Looking Elsewhere
When you find out your husband is having an affair, the immediate thought is usually our marriage is over. If he’s cheating, then he must want out of the marriage, right?
This seems logical, but it actually isn’t always true.
However, his looking at other women, or elsewhere for attention, affection, or love is certainly a possible sign your marriage could be over to him.
Signs He’s Looking Elsewhere
- Who he follows on social media. You find out he’s following Instagram models, has friended his old girlfriends, or that he has a lot of female connections.
- He’s watching porn. This is another big trigger for wives. Porn is actually a lot more complicated than people realize. Even though it’s obviously about sex, it doesn’t have to mean he wants to be with someone else.
- He looks at other women. This is a big trigger for a lot of wives. They think if he’s so interested in looking elsewhere, he must want to be elsewhere. Not true in most cases actually.
- He’s on dating apps. While the purpose of these sites is to find someone to date, not everyone is looking for a new mate. Some people only surf these sites entertaining the idea, but not acting on it.
- He’s cheating. The sign doesn’t get bigger than this one. However, as I said earlier, an affair doesn’t have to mean your marriage is over, and most people who have one aren’t actually sure what they really want.
#5 – He’s Preparing
When people think their marriage is over, or want it to be over, they plan out how they’ll do it. This thinking out different options typically happens over a period of time and can result in certain behaviors.
Signs He’s Preparing
- He talks about divorce. This could be suggesting it as a possible solution to your problems, threatening it during a fight, or commenting on others who are divorcing or divorced. Usually it’s described in positive terms, while in actuality divorce is very painful and destructive for everyone involved.
- There are financial changes. For example, he becomes secretive about the amount of his yearly bonus, he opens an individual credit card and doesn’t tell you, he comes controlling about money, wants to stop spending on anything joint, or stops buying things for you. Sometimes the opposite happens though and he becomes very lavish in spending on you, but this could be to mask his true plans.
What To Take Away
All of these can be signs your marriage is over for him, but they don’t have to be. I know a lot of people who’ve stayed in some pretty bad marriages. So, not everyone leaves and gets divorced. However, there’s no question these are signs of an unhealthy relationship and should be addressed – especially if you want to stay married or have a happier one.
Have you seen other signs your marriage could be over for him? Tell other readers what you see and find out if they agree.
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