Falling out of love with your spouse is one of the top marriage fears most people have. You’re with the single most important person to you in this world, and you can’t wait to see what happily ever after will be like with them. Yet, the nagging voice in your head won’t stop saying, “Your parents started this way too, what if you end up having a loveless relationship like them?”
It is completely natural for couples to get anxious before their wedding and ask questions like this. While many who go through with it anyway find it to be the best decision they ever made, some, unfortunately, have their worst fear come to life after getting married.
You’d be surprised to learn that married couples who are happy in their marriage are a lot less than those who aren’t. Since all marriages – loving and otherwise – go through tough times, how can you tell which category yours falls under?
If you can relate to most or all of the following signs, the odds are, you are in an unhappy marriage.
It is one thing to look forward to sleeping diagonally on the bed again or having the whole house to yourself for a minute. And another to get excited at every chance to be apart from your partner.
When you can’t wait for your husband’s next business trip or are more comfortable anywhere but at home when he’s there, your marital relationship is probably already circling the drain. When you love someone, you look forward to being with them, not the other way around.
Another sign love has departed from your marriage is when you can’t feel anything but disdain when you look at your spouse. If you catch yourself always wondering ‘why I married this idiot’, and not in a playful way, you’re there.
The mere sight of your partner rouses nothing but annoyance in you. You could be in a good mood, and it would automatically turn sour when he walks in.
Conflicts are a natural part of life. People in loving relationships also argue, but the difference lies in how often it comes up and how they come out of it. When you and your partner can’t seem to reach a compromise or every attempt at a conversation turns to a bickering session, that can be pretty unhealthy for your relationship.
Healthy fights should strengthen your bond as a couple. If your relationship deteriorates every time you quarrel, that might be your sign.
On the other hand, not fighting at all can be an even worse sign than recurring spats. Going at it even if it’s over petty reasons shows that you still care to an extent. It means a part of you wants things to get better.
What’s more worrisome is when you or your partner don’t care what the other does anymore. When you feel like there’s no need to even hash issues out or agree to disagree or when you’re too tired to try, that’s not a very healthy place to be in your relationship.
Studies show that being unhappy in a marriage can be harmful to both your physical and mental health. The physical effects range from seemingly insignificant manifestations as slow-healing wounds to an increased risk of heart disease and more.
You could also see yourself showing anxiety and depression symptoms, including headaches, paranoia, and insomnia. No, it’s not just in your head; marriages without love and happiness waste lives, quite literally sometimes.
Remember how you couldn’t wait to share things with your partner when you started dating? When they were the first person you called when you got some good news and also when you had a terrible day?
Who do you share your feelings with now and confide in about the heavy stuff? If it used to be your spouse, but someone else has taken up the role, what has changed and why?
If the previous point rang a bell, and you were wondering what the answer is, it’s probably that emotional intimacy has dwindled significantly in your marital life. The aspect of your relationship that allowed you to confide in your partner without holding back for fear of judgment isn’t being nurtured.
You feel more comfortable talking to your friend now than your husband because the affirmation and care you used to expect from him are no longer there.
Not having sex anymore is a huge red flag, especially if it’s because one person is no longer feeling the other. Yes, the sexual energy won’t always be a 100, the urge to do it reduces with time.
Nevertheless, if you used to go at it every other week but can now count on one hand how many times you get sexually intimate in a year, there is a problem. It’s even worse if you’re not making up for that strain in other ways.
Looking forward to your husband leaving home is one thing, actively avoiding spending time with him is another. Do you find yourself taking on extra workload without needing extra cash or keeping busy in other ways just to tire yourself out and go home to crash?
Does your partner make up excuses to get out of date night and other activities that involve the two of you? Several things can cause this to happen, and a lack of love is definitely among them.
On the flip side, you may not be forcing yourself to work more. It could have started as a way of distracting yourself from everything going wrong at home before it developed into something more.
Perhaps you’ve come to accept your relationship as a lost cause and prefer to focus on something you stand a chance at doing successfully. If this sounds like you or your partner, you might want to look into that, and soon.
Do your happy thoughts revolve around getting a divorce and starting afresh instead of making it work with your spouse? Do you picture yourself with someone else (either random or a particular person) and daydream about what being married to them would be like?
Whether you have an active plan to act on it or it’s mostly still in your imagination, if those thoughts come up a lot, it’s a sign.
Getting a divorce is a lot more complicated than breaking up a casual relationship. Aside from the emotional toll, it takes on you, you have to consider investments tying you with your spouse like children and financial commitments.
If what you stand to lose or complications due to these investments is the only reason you’re still married to your partner, there’d likely be no love lost between you if things went south.
A healthy marriage shouldn’t feel like you’re wasting your life even when things are not super smooth. When the connection between you and your spouse is no longer there, you may feel trapped and unfulfilled in your marital life.
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When you keep feeling like you can do a lot better and leaving isn’t an option due to the reasons above or something else, resentment sets in. And your relationship will only worsen for as long as it festers.
If you no longer confide in the person who is supposed to be like your best friend, hardly even talk, then you’re more or fewer housemates. If your situation feels less like you’re married and more like you’re living with a roommate, it’s another manifestation of lovelessness in your partnership.
If all you ever discuss are the needs of the house; bills, fees, maintenance, and the likes, that’s not a healthy relationship.
Again, without adequate emotional intimacy in a romantic relationship, many other aspects suffer. When you no longer feel confident enough to turn to your partner on certain issues, you begin to keep secrets, and the distance between you continues to widen as a result.
What you choose not to share may seem insignificant at first, but you get more comfortable keeping bigger things to yourself with time. Before you know it, you’re like two strangers sharing a roof.
We’ve all heard stories about couples who have been married for long and how love helped them cope with their partner’s quirks. How they learned to live with each other’s pet peeves and so on.
One indicator of lovelessness in a marital union is when the opposite of the above is the case. When your spouse irks you so much that you can’t help but pick on every little thing they do wrong, they have become more irritating than attractive or likable.
Unhappiness in marriage often manifests as loneliness. This is worse than the kind you sometimes feel when you’re single because then you can look forward to getting married to the love of your life someday.
When you feel lonely in a place that should be your final destination, with the person you thought you’d spend the rest of your life with, it’s hard to be happy.
No human being is perfect. When people fall in love, it becomes easy to forget this simple fact of life because all they see in their partner is good stuff. However, as time goes on and the honeymoon phase passes, they begin to see more clearly.
Those who manage to hold on to their connection can still find a way to live with their partner’s flaws. However, once that love is lost, their imperfections become more evident, and it’s all they can see when they look at each other.
You know you’re unhappy with marriage, or at least your current one, when only the negative aspects of being in it dominate your thoughts. Just like you only see what’s wrong with someone you no longer love (or even like), the same can happen in matrimony.
Many couples fall into this pattern when their relationship is no longer pleasing. When your last memory of being genuinely happy with each other is a distant one, it’s understandable how the cons are all you can see.
A marriage without love is characterized by a gap where there shouldn’t be, like communication and intimacy (physical and emotional). Married people who no longer love each other may feel trapped and depressed, and some may look elsewhere to get what they’re lacking in their home.
People choose to remain in a bad situation despite being unhappy because they are afraid. The longer they stay married, the harder it is to leave for fear of changing the status quo and starting over. A man may also remain in a marriage without love if he stands to lose a lot in the divorce.
If you choose to remain in a loveless marriage, your best bet at lasting happiness would be to give making it work a chance. Look for ways to re-introduce the lost love into your marital life by convincing your spouse to seek professional help.
Intimacy keeps a marital union running smoothly, it is what differentiates a platonic friendship from a romantic partnership. Sexual intimacy is essential as it brings married people closer physically, while emotional intimacy enhances togetherness and strengthens the marital bond. Without the latter, a marriage simply cannot last.
The probability of a marriage falling apart after 25 years is low, but it still happens because everyone has their limit. Those who divorce after staying together for that long are likely to do so when they’ve had enough of pent-up unresolved issues.
Sadly, lovelessness in matrimony is a common occurrence. Fortunately, the signs are always there, and if you can catch it early, you might still have a shot at steering your relationship back on track. If you found this article helpful, kindly leave a comment and share it with others who may need it.
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My wife constantly cares for our grandchildren 12 or more hours a day. This has been going on for over 13 years now. Our nurse daughter drops them off, 2 boys, early morning and picks them up late at night. My wife waits on them hand and foot all day then drives to the daughters house and does their laundry and straightens their house. I’m last in line to get any attention at all. I provide all the financial means to make this happen. I even clean our house to help her. I feel sorry for her she gets exhausted everyday. Our daughter is a single mom the ex husband is not living so she feels sorry for the grand boys constantly. When I say anything about the situation I get blasted and I’m constantly making her mad. I don’t have wife just this caregiver. Every night she turns over as far as she can in our bed and snores. She never is romantic or surprises me with any romance at all. I have to initiate everything. Our marriage sucks I’m lonely. I still have a huge sex drive and am still wanting to be with her. She makes me feel like a sick old man when I want sex or she makes me feel like she’s doing me a huge favor. I’m sick of it all. I give her compliments, I try to be nice, but it always backfires on me. We absolutely have no romance in our relationship. No sure what to do. Trapped