Feeling Confused and Disconnected


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First of all @Aspiring Nurse, I commend you for recognizning a problem and trying to seek out advice on the matter, rather than just acting impulsively. You have some very important building blocks to a healthy relationship already. You, yourself say that your wife is a loyal and dedicated wife and mother, and that she was willing to ignore your past, and see the better person you have become. Do you know how many men would give anything to have a wife with the traits you described? You have found a special woman, a choice you confirmed through the Holy Ghost, don't forget her amazing qualities. I also see that she has faults. No woman you will ever find will be faultless. They may be different faults than your wife's, but she will still do things that annoy, bother, and frustrate you just as you would do to her. Finally, and most importantly, you swore an oath in a holy temple of God, before God, that you would be her husband forever. I want you to imagine getting to the other side, looking God in the face, and telling him "Well I broke my eternal covenant with you and her because I just wasn't feeling that spark." It won't work brother. Take divorce off the table. You made an eternal choice, and honestly it sounds like a good eternal choice☺. Remember all of your wife's wonderful qualties and take to heart the words of president Monson 

"Choose a companion carefully and prayerfully; and when you are married, be fiercely loyal one to another. Priceless advice comes from a small framed plaque I once saw in the home of an uncle and aunt. It read, “Choose your love; love your choice.” There is great wisdom in those few words. Commitment in marriage is absolutely essential"

God bless you in your trial brother. Keep praying, and know we are all praying for you!

Edited by Midwest LDS
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You've gotten some excellent advice and perspective already so I will just add this. I was raised in a 2-parent household and when I got married, I 'tested' my husband for quite some time (I didn't know that's what I was doing). Meaning, it took me quite a while to see how real, vulnerable, etc I could be with him and how much I could trust him with my feelings, etc. Basically, I had walls and I needed to gradually see if it was safe to bring them down with my husband. You know what? Thanks to his amazing patience and charity over time, even when he didn't understand, after a while I saw that he would still care about me and for me no matter what. Why do I say this? First, it's only been 2 years (and with a child and cheating)!! Second, you said she was raised by a single mom so there's probably some stuff she's carrying around that you, as her husband, need to show even greater long-suffering for. It could be that once she knows she can really trust you and knows you'll be there for her regardless, her reactions will change and will also have more respect and consideration for you when you offer your opinions (re: spending habits, etc). It took a while but my husband and I got to a good place and you can too … just as soon as you decide to apply the pure love of Christ on a daily basis:

1 Corinthians 13

4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;

6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;

7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.

8 Charity never faileth

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Godspeed and best wishes to you as you work on your marriage.

I humbly suggest that your efforts will be more fruitful if approached with a resolve to make your marriage work.

It’s far less likely to be fruitful if you dwell on what you perceive to be the shortcomings and seek affirmation from others that those shortcomings justify you ending the marriage.

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I've seen a lot of stuff.  Your feelings are very normal IMO and everyone on this forum has shared them from time to time.  Life can be hard.

BUT, the grass is not greener. 

Seems like you have a decent wife. 

That's better than most.  You have a child and breaking up a family would be a tragedy just to fulfill your selfish desires for "love".  That sort of "love" does not really exist.

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On 10/31/2018 at 5:35 PM, Aspiring Nurse said:

I guess I mean the intensity. I mean we get caught up in the day to day of life. It wouldnt be realistic to think every day will be amazing and without issues. So I do believe the way it is expressed ebbs and flows maybe? Like you can go on dates and things every week but you do something "special " for your anniversary.  I think love language also has a lot to do with it as well. My wife desires and appreciates quality time and words of affirmation. I appreciate physical touch and acts of service. Also, idk about other relationships but I was always under the illusion I guess that's the best thing to call it now based on your response, that you love should be as I described. How to decide now if this is what spending eternity with my wife looks like...feeling discontent and lost I dont know. Maybe I'm just way off base and need to really understand if I really love my wife and how that actually looks.

So your definition of Love is "amazing and without issues" or "dates and things and something special" or "physical touch"... that's why I said it's Hollywood.

Here... take what your understanding of Love is and bounce it against these verses and see how they reconcile:

1 John 4:16: “And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them."

1 Corinthians 13:2: “If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing."

Psalm 143:8: “Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life."

1 Corinthians 13:4-5: “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs."

Let's see if we can get to a point where you can shift your understanding of Love outside of the "Hollywood definition" to the TRUE definition of Love that is the foundation of eternal marriage.  Maybe this will help you readjust in your marriage which can possibly trigger a readjustment on your spouse as she responds to your part of the relationship.

Edited by anatess2
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You said you prayed about it and got a solid answer.  God knew you would be at this point today and he still gave you that answer.  Trust that he knows something about the two of you that you don't and get busy working this out.

Love is like a plant in the sense that you have to work at it to keep it alive and make it grow.  You want a loving happy marriage full of domestic bliss?  You need to make that happen in the marriage you have.  Serve her, stop focusing on how happy you feel (or not) and start focusing on her happiness.  What can you do or change to increase her happiness, what can you do to put a smile on her face and warm her heart?  Do those things, keep doing them.

Lock your heart and mind out against all other women.  No porn, no fantasizing or dwelling on romantic or erotic thoughts that have anything to do with anybody other than her.  Deliberately do fantasize about your wife. 

If you feel the situation is really bad, go for counseling, even if you have to go alone. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I feel like you need to go back to the beginning. Back to where you and your wife were dating and not yet married. 

Remember what drew you to her in the first place; there must have been a little bit of attraction right? Or what is it her personality that was attractive to you? Ponder it all, and write it down. That way you can review it at a later time and look at it on paper. We don't start out dating people that we don't like, or that we find unattractive. So that's why I'm telling you to go back to that time, because whatever drew you to her could help you out now. I've had issues with my husband too, and we've been married less than 2 years. I did what I'm telling you and it helped me realize that despite the issues of today, that person I married is still the same person I met several years ago. The same could be said with your wife I'm sure. 

The fact that she came from a single mother household means that she has some deep-rooted issues that she needs to open up with you about. When you find her in a good mood (or at least calm), talk to her about HER. Her past, how she feels every day, what her definition of love is...get to know her again. Getting her to open up with you will alleviate a lot of the tension that you're experiencing with her. 

Bring God into the marriage again. The problem with today's world is that people think they can have a happy, romantic marriage with lots of "love" but leave God out of the equation, and it doesn't help that movies and music portray that too. I'd say the first step to bringing God in is by praying together, every day. Even if neither of you feel like it; that's the time to get on your knees. 

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You have a lot of issues you need to work out here.

You would like hot steamy sex with your wife and confuse that with love.  Love is putting her first above your needs so she can be happy.  It is doing this without expectation of something in return.  This is incredibly hard to do.  We all want life to be fair and marriage to be equal.

Life isn't fair and marriage isn't equal.  The only aspect where marriage is equal is say in decision making.  And that is the end of the equality.  You can't divvy up chores evenly. You can't divvy up responsibility equally.  You can't put equal amount of effort into the relationship.  It is impossible.

The only thing you have control of here is you.  You get to decide if you are going to fight with your wife.  You get to decide if you are going to love her.  You get to decide if you are going to better yourself.  You are the one that determines if you are going to live a Christ like life.

There are millions of arranged marriages in the world.  They do not start with love.  Some never end up with love, but some do.

If you want love in your marriage, it needs to start with you.  Learning about your wife and her needs and then setting out to meet those needs.  You may have to view this as a duty more than anything at first.  You certainly aren't going to do this out of love at first, but you do it out of a desire to have love.  Learn what foods she likes best and learn how to make it well.  Take her on dates.  Spend time with her.  

When she makes you mad, stop and analyze it.  Anger is essentially a heightened form of frustration.  Frustration is basically not being able to achieve an outcome that you want.  Figure out just exactly what you want and why.  Then figure out what she wants and why.  Then learn to communicate with her.  Don't use phrases like "you always..."  Or "You never... "  that never leads to anything good.

In loving your wife, stop asking what has she done in return for me.  Instead focus on what the next thing you are going to do for her.  This is part of the "life isn't fair" bit.  Do as much for her as you possibly can.  Treat her like the queen you want.  There are some here that probably hate the movie Johnny Lingo, but the big take away from Johnny Lingo is that Johnny treated his bride with love and tenderness and treated her like the queen he wanted.  She became that person.  And her love for him grew as well and the bond between them grew.  Johnny Lingo did not give waiting for something in return.  He just gave knowing that that is how you make a better marriage.

Doing the above is not going to fix things over night.  It will likely be many months before you see real improvement.  It may even be a year.

I started this year with the real possibility of me ending my marriage with my wife 25 years.  I turned it around.  Or at least have made great progress.  We recently went on a cruise to celebrate 25 years of marriage.  And today things are so much better.  It starts with committing to learn to love and then sticking with it even when it seems pointless.

Edited by Lost Boy
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