In both the previous and this article, my statements flow out of convictions about the primal nature of men and women. I don’t alibi for men, condemn women, or vice versa. As the relationship expert, each woman has to figure out what she needs to do to achieve whatever she wishes to pursue. I simply highlight likely causes of men drifting away from home.
Her Highness Anne at post 1703 inquired how to ‘recover’ if wife is already helping her husband pursue new job, education, career change, or just to express himself. She worries that he may already feel less vital to his family. Other ladies show similar interest, so I shall describe what’s best for them and others already committed to helping husband change his life.
First, determine if you have a problem. Forget that you think love and affection will always overcome and that vows seal the deal. They won’t and never have. Men pay little attention anyway to woman-talk.
Examine yourself for the little irritants that displease him such as nagging, glances or words that show he disappoints you, and daily appearance that disappoints his eyes. Are you the pretty lady he married or unkempt reminder that his taste for attractiveness won’t be satisfied in his supposed castle? If before marriage he didn’t see you as you are today, you now work against yourself and probably need to recover from something.
However, go further. Measure yourself against your motivation and ways of conducting home affairs. How much of how you treat husband happens because you think you deserve whatever it is you seek, suggest, or demand? What is in your heart most of the time? Pleasing yourself or him? Criticizing or accepting him? Trying to improve what he doesn’t want improved? Are you queen to his king or ironclad and determined mistress caring most for your nest or kids?
Do you see evidence of his resentment, resistance, or retaliation to your behavior or your efforts to improve the marriage? How does he react to your constructive criticism, when criticism always outweighs good intentions? How often and how deep does he fall into depressed moments after you talk seriously or argue about something of great significance to you? Figure out in your mind how his resentment, resistance, or retaliation shows up. Allow for this: Retaliation will be more common if he’s young, alpha male, and especially if both. Resistance will be more common if he’s middle age, beta male, and especially if both. Resentment will be more common if he’s older, gamma male, and especially if both.
Second, evaluate how you may have made him question your dependence on him. Where, how, and when did he receive any kind of message that he’s anything less than vital to you and yours? However, the absence of such messages in your mind doesn’t mean that he sees it your way. So, if you think you haven’t sent such messages, I suggest you find ways to convey how eagerly and pleasingly you depend on him. But do it gently, unsurprisingly, and as indirectly as possible.
Third, how truly willing are you to accept cutbacks in spending and togetherness while he pursues whatever he seeks? Is your spirit one of sacrificing to help him? Or, is your concern oriented around what price you or the kids have to pay for him to pursue what he’s after? I don’t suggest that you cave in to whatever he wants, don’t give him his head so to speak. The more he perceives rather than being told how sacrifices hurt you and the kids, the better for you.
Fourth, figure out what if anything you need to do to ease yourself back, whether from the edge of being abandoned or back into the game of being a better wife. Good luck and God bless you.