“I don’t love my wife anymore.”
Let’s face it, admitting that to yourself can make you feel horrible, especially because how you feel doesn’t just affect you but also someone you have vowed to stay with forever.
However, it’s possible to embark on a journey with someone and feel completely lost halfway through.
And if you believe in your heart that you can make things work with your wife again, I have some great news for you: In the words of Anita Dobson, “To make a marriage work, you have to want to. If you want to stay with that person, you will. It’s simple.”
Here are 7 things you can do that will not only save your marriage but also create a happy and long-lasting relationship with your wife.
1. Think About the Reasons Why You Don’t Love Your Wife
The first thing you must do is take some time to think about all the reasons why you may not love your wife anymore. You need to consider the specifics so you can figure out how to fix them.
Here’s the truth, most men jump into marriage without realizing the amount of effort they need to put in to make it work.
The true meaning of your marriage vow is that you’re both responsible for making it last. Even though filing for divorce may seem like the only option, you need to figure out whether the reasons why you may not love your wife anymore may repeat the next time you get married. This may be unavoidable if your reasons have more to do with you than your wife’s behavior.
If your idea of love revolves around excitement and the satisfaction of desires, you won’t be able to love someone else either because all your relationships will end once you get bored.
2. Have an Open and Honest Conversation with Her
If your wife says hurtful things that leave you feeling miserable about yourself, or she has been acting selfishly for the past few years, sit her down and talk to her. But here’s the deal, you need to do in a way that doesn’t feel like you’re attacking her.
Instead of telling your wife you don’t love her and what she needs to change about herself, try to get her to feel comfortable enough so she can also open up about why she’s been acting a certain way. Maybe she doesn’t feel like you care about her and there’s something else that’s been bothering her.
It’s important for you to let her know that you care about her and want your marriage to last. Remain open and honest instead of stonewalling her so she can truly believe that you’re willing to improve yourself and your marriage.
3. Think About What ‘Being in Love’ Means to You
It’s also worth considering that maybe you’re mistaking love for something else. Perhaps, your idea of ‘being in love’ isn’t realistic and that’s what makes you feel like you don’t love your wife anymore. Apart from being honest with your wife, you have to be honest with yourself.
It could be that you’re missing the excitement and uncertainty that comes with a new relationship as opposed to a well-established one. It may sound strange to you, but healthy distance can also help kickstart feelings of attraction and desire. When you spend every waking moment with your wife, you can forget what it’s like to not have her around.
When most people talk about love, they picture youth, passion, beauty, and devotion, and almost no one imagines being in sweatpants and having a messy house. If that’s the case, you need to rethink your understanding of love and what love actually looks like in a long-term relationship.
4. Make Her Feel Loved and See How That Changes Things
It may come as a surprise to you, but your wife can be much more lovable and desirable when you make her feel loved. Try to do something every day to make her feel special and valued. She may be suspicious at first, but you’ll find that the happier she feels around you, the easier it will be for you to keep loving her.
At the same time, you need to focus on finding things about her that are admirable so you can love her better and overlook her imperfections. As Fawn Weaver, the famous author of Happy Wives Club, once said, “A happy marriage doesn’t mean you have a perfect spouse or a perfect marriage. It simply means you’ve chosen to look beyond the imperfections in both.”
There’s no denying that you loved your wife enough to get married to her. She deserves more from you than to have you walk out on her just because being married to her isn’t how you imagined it. What are the odds that you won’t feel the same way with your next wife?
5. Remember That Love Is a Choice
Far too often, men treat ‘love’ the same way they treat ‘lust’ when they’re both completely different things. While lust may be something you have no control over, you need to realize that mature love requires constant energy and investment.
When you think about all the things your wife has done for you, how being married to her has helped you become a better person, and the value she adds to your life, you’ll fall in love with her all over again.
Getting to know your wife better and exploring all the different sides of her can also help put the spark back in your relationship. As Mignon McLaughlin said, “A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person.”
As it turns out, love is not simply a feeling that you can’t fight. It’s deliberate. It’s not the neurochemical high you get when you first fall in love with someone, it’s a choice and a promise.
It takes external effort every single day and it’s all about making a long-term commitment to someone and understanding what that means for both of you.
6. Understand that a Happy Marriage Takes a Lot of Work
Simply stated, marriage is a life-long commitment. You may see many men who have happy and seemingly successful marriages, but you may not always know about the difficult times they’ve been through together.
It may seem silly to you, but having a good marriage is a lot similar to owning a house. Think about it: The same way you need to put in a lot of effort to maintain and keep your house in a great condition, you need to constantly work on yourself to improve your marriage.
If you think that your marriage can’t be saved because your wife isn’t willing to change, you may need to re-evaluate what you know. When you stop pointing out your wife’s shortcomings and start focusing on yourself, you’ll be able to build a stronger foundation for your marriage.
Ask anyone, steadying a waning marriage isn’t going to be easy. Once you’re out of the honeymoon phase, it can be hard to reignite the passion in your relationship with your wife because love, as you probably know, will not last forever.
True love, on the other hand, is something you have to work for, and once you do, it will last for a lifetime.
7. Consider Getting Outside Help
It’s important for you to remember that there’s no shame in asking for help. If you think that talking to a marriage counselor can help you understand how you feel and why you feel this way, you should definitely talk to your wife about that.
An experienced counselor can not only help you get a better understanding of yourself and what may be missing from your marriage but also what you can do to overcome your issues and accept each other’s differences.
They will also help you focus on the good things about your marriage. In most cases, your wife would want to make the marriage work just as much as you do. As long as you’re both making time for each other, you will get through any rough patch and come out on the other side stronger and closer than ever before.
The Last Word
It’s worth mentioning that you’re not alone in feeling completely lost in your marriage. Many men have felt the way you do and they’ve still managed to make their marriage work and rebuild a loving and healthy relationship with their wives.
Every marriage needs a little bit of work from both sides. Instead of running away at the first sight of discomfort, you need to focus on what you bring to the table. You need to make extra efforts and have faith instead of simply throwing in the towel. Focus on becoming the best husband you can and see it work like a charm!
Keep the steps I’ve discussed above in mind so you can transform your failing marriage into a healthy and successful one.