Mr. Marriage Counselor - "How Do I Get My Wife Back?"

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    At Guy Stuff we work every day with individuals and couples struggling to keep their marriages together. It may be that they’ve grown apart, fallen out of love, had an affair, or all of the above. Many times we see men who feel they’ve hit rock bottom in their relationship - facing a separation or divorce and are trying to figure out how to get their wife back.

    Below is a question we received from a husband whose marriage is on the verge of collapse. He’s seeking help to figure out what he can do to get his wife back. My advice to him follows.

    IS THE LOVE MISSING? LEARN WHAT YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT

    Reader Question:

    Hi Mr. Counselor, I'm lost with my marriage. These are my issues:

    I'm not sure whether my wife loves me or not. We have been married for 18 years and believe me she never said I LUV U. Each time I'm the only who said it to her.

    1. Things got worse recently after she was very protective and secretive about her cell phone messages. Once I caught her texting containing the word darling. Of course I was stunned and angry. I asked who was this and she replied her friend, and all her friends at work call her darling and dear. Gave her the benefit of the doubt, but I called the # and it turned out to be a guy. I confronted her if this was your friend and he knows you are married why can't he or she call you by the name or other than darling or dear. Her response I'm too jealous.
    2. Typically for her birthday we have a simple celebration with our kids but this year she went out with her friends. I asked her if could join. The answer was NO and only ladies. I'm not invited and party was throw by her friends. I told her why can't I meet and get to know your friends. No guys were allowed. Sounded strange but I gave in.
    3. Now she even hangs out with her friends during her off day even when I'm back home early from work. 5. These days it's even hard to had sex with her. Typical reason: "I had a hard day, tired, not feeling well. Even when we have sex, "NO kisses," just go by the sake of having sex that's all. No love. Seriously, I'm thinking to kick her out from my life, but each time I look at my kids and I don't want to do it. I did talk to her but nothing change. How do I get my wife back?" -Sammy

    LEARN HOW TO HELP A MAN IN MIDLIFE CRISIS

    Sammy’s situation isn’t that unusual. Many men and women find that, over time, their spouse becomes more distant and their relationship is disintegrating. This doesn’t happen overnight as it may seem or without warning signs, but often we overlook them.

    My Answer:

    It's not just guys who have affairs -- wives have affairs too. And it's not just wives who don't feel loved -- husbands do too.

    I'm working with several other men in marriage counseling who are struggling, just like you, with wives who appear to be cheating.

    I hear you trying to love her. A common problem is that we try to love our partner in the wrong ways. And when guys' marriages get where yours is and believe they are losing their wives, they get desperate and try too hard too fast.

    Here's what I'd suggest:

    • Give her some space
    • Don't try to figure out what's going on (for right now)
    • Stop pursuing her
    • Work on yourself

    One of the most powerful ways guys tell their wives they love them is to go to counseling. Find a professional marriage counselor who works with men and get some support, guidance, and discover what you can change about yourself. By doing this you'll make yourself more attractive to her and have the best chance of getting your wife back.

    Don’t Ask How To Get Your Wife Back – Ask How To Keep Your Wife From Leaving

    As I mentioned, spouses don’t leave or have affairs out of nowhere. There are always issues leading up to these choices that have been ignored and unaddressed for way too long. And the typical result is that these issues eventually reach a tipping point and the relationship breaks.

    WANT TO KNOW WHAT OTHERS DO? LEARN WHAT OTHERS DID IN YOUR SITUATION

    It’s wise for all couples to consider how to be proactive rather than reactive in their relationships. Allowing the communication between you to fail, or the intimacy to evaporate will eventually erode the best of marriages. So the best advice for any couple at any stage of their relationship is to pay attention to each other and realize that strong marriages take work. Doing this will help prevent you from experiencing Sammy’s situation and wondering how it is that you’ll get your wife back.

    Got a question you'd like to Ask a Marriage Counselor? Click here to submit it and I'll try to answer it in an upcoming post. Be sure to Sign Up by Email below this article so you'll get my answer as soon as it's published.

    Editor's Note: This post was originally published April 15, 2010 and has been updated with new information for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

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