Feels like our marriage is dead-ish; don’t wanna spend time at homeMar 2
We’re 26M/F, married for two years, known each other for eight. I’ve been working in tech since graduating, whereas she goes to school part-time (no work auth).
My wife and I have been recently arguing about stupid things. What started this chain of events is that one night I didn’t get home from work until 730pm (I usually get home by 7 and let her know when I leave the office so she can have dinner ready). This time, when I let her know that I was stepping out of the office, apparently she had already finished cooking everything, and when I got home she was absolutely pissed that the dishes she spent two hours prepping for and cooking were now cold. I had a tough day at work as well and broke down in tears for the first time in years, and we didn’t say anything to each other for the rest of the night.
For the next few days, she complained that she had trouble sleeping and that she was getting depressed and received no love from me. Overall, our time together at home became awkward, and that somehow increased my “resentment” towards the situation or even her, because I’d really appreciate the after-hours to unwind and chill.
As I switched to a new team recently, I have lots of new tech I’d like to get my hands on. Given that we aren’t going well with each other anyways, today I let her know I was going to spend my afternoon at the office, and guess what - she got furious again, complaining that I don’t spend any time with her, and that I don’t care about her at all and simply treats her as a servant/roommate.
Honestly, with her recent negativity, I’d rather work 80 hour weeks than staying at home and dealing with this. She’s now out “walking around” after doing the same complaints to me with our apartment door open, while I’m fixed to my chair thinking how the fuck I got outta this situation or whether we’re actually over. I’m starting to regret our marriage...
- MathWorks cJ8oNwYou think the marriage is dead because of a few arguments in the past week? Did you never argue while dating or earlier in the marriage?
- Call me spoiled, but we hadn’t argued much while dating or earlier in the marriage - we were both very amicable actually.
In the earlier days, nothing had lasted more than a few hours, and recently it’s evolved into days or even weeks of contained resentment(?)/complaints from her end that burst out here and there.
- Dude!!! Argument is the symptom not the cause and typically that's just the tip of the iceberg. Have a sincere and open talk with her. An effective talk would be much more difficult then you anticipate. Because you are part of it not out of it. That's why sometimes ppl to a third party aka councilor. But you can try initiating between two of you first. Bed compassionate and truly listen to her. May be she feels alone or insecure (no career etc)
- I did talk to her about the root cause, and sounds like she thinks she's no longer receiving enough attention from me, and that I've put my careers ahead of her. However, I don't fully buy that since my WLB nowadays are much more manageable than before, and this didn't happen then... (perhaps because I took her along with me in my business trips every month back then?)
At the same time, I'm unashamedly dedicated to my career and passionate about the work I'm doing, and I also feel that I'm also helping the marriage since I'm the only breadwinner in the relationship (probably so in the next few years as well).
- Amazon / EngjinkchingmoreAt the end of the day, what comes along is your family and friends, not work or colleagues. I understand that learning new technologies and innovation keeps you interested, but at the same time family is equally important and once you have a kid, priorities in life is going to take a U turn. I've been there I've done that (postponed my parental leave to deliver a critical project and did not spend much time with my new born), but later I realized, company really doesn't care about your passion or the extra hours you put in. Listen to her, lock yourself down for an hour and put yourself in her shoes and ask yourself if what your doing is right and even worth it.Mar 25
- I don't know you guys. But just by listening to you speak I have a hypothesis. I don't know the exact right the word for it. But it is something in the line of insecurity, self worth etc. You are absolutely not wrong to be focused on your career. And you are the only earner in the home. These are facts and you see them as facts. And you expect her see the facts as the way they are. So far nothing wrong. What's missing is understanding her "feelings". Interestingly feelings after not always illogical. It is very possible that she is struggling with her self worth. Lack of attention/not enough time etc are just ways to scream for help. I really went out in a limb here. But if my hypothesis is right - dilution is actually not very hard - as long as you decide to help her. For example, instead of pointing out that you are there bread winner, you focus on convincing her that earning the bread for the family is not the only or even not the most important contribution to a marriage. Find ways that can give her a purpose (not profit, hobby etc.) Sounds very simple, but very powerful.Mar 33
- Married guy here: You should take a break from work, take her on a long vacation.
- Capital One / ProductMrProductAnother married guy here: what "What us up" is suggesting is the best way to stop the bleeding asap and reset. Trust me. Spend time with your wife. Leave work at work. And when you come back she'll be much happier. Spend the money for a vacation that will make her happy. Take time to show her she's still priority #1. That's all a woman really wants: Affection and Attention. Also, when back at work, plan your week to include 1 fun activity the two of you can do. Try something different each week. Taking the time to plan it and schedule it in advance will give her something to look forward to and show her you're fully invested despite the long work hours on other days of the week. You know what to do. We've given you the advice. Now go be her gladiator.Mar 27
- That's really great advice. I was thinking about what had gone wrong recently cuz my WLB was much worse earlier in our marriage, and I think it may have to do with the monthly (or even more often) business trips I used to take her to, and they gave something for her to look forward to in her rather unexciting life... Now that my team no longer involves travel, I'll need to make up for that in other ways.
Overall I'm a pretty boring person when it comes to weekends, but I'll start planning things out for us consciously.
- None of these arguments are substantive. She’s probably bored at home and needs more to focus her energy on.
- Microsoft / ProductBlueSmithThe issue with your marriage is summarized in this post. Lot of "I"s. What about her feelings?
- Amazon seaurchinmoreMarried guy here. Marriage never gets "more fun." Both parties should understand that and find joy or meaning in their life elsewhere.
- Uber tkNoodlemarried guy here and I disagree. marriage has only gotten better and we've been married 20+ years. the companionship is better, sex is better, feelings are stronger. people have said it already, but be intentional about spending time with her. not in front of a screen, but talking. take walks in the evenings, day trips on the weekend. be present when you're with her and try hard to understand her perspective. there's a book about 'love languages'. pick it up and read. the great thing about all of this is that it seems OP is making a genuine effort to work on the marriage which is awesome
- I would:
1. Decide for the next 12 months to try to make it work. She wants more time together? Fine! Maybe get a less stressful job. Change your priorities. Lean in and commit 100%. Make sacrifices and be selfless.
2. After 12 months, evaluate if things are better and if you are happier. If not, get a divorce. You’ll be reentering the dating pool in your late 20s, right before your peak market value. Life will go on. Except, you’ll probably be paying alimony / child support and that’s gonna suck.
- "Sexual value"? Ok. I lived in New York for over a decade, bro. The guys rolling around with hot young models are not generally 30 year olds. Just sayin. Also, I found that as a 38 year old divorced guy with a great career in SV I had it waaay easier than when I was in my late 20s and single in NYC. My gf now is a frigging nymphomanical 40-something well-to-do divorcee who is smokin hot and desperate to please me, and I am a pudgy almost-40 year old, slightly balding but not awful looking dude.
- There was a reason the two of you got married . You two can work to remember what that was or watch the marriage end. I have some thoughts on that but please answer my questions at the end.
Keep in mind she probably gets a HUGE fraction if not nearly all of her social interactions with you. There is nothing you can do about that but it puts a lot of pressure on your relationship.
How long did you date before you were married? How long did you cohabitate? Was it ever an LDR for significant period?
- OK. Well the first initial glow/excitement/infatuation was probably mostly faded by the time you married and you did give it a try at living together before jumping in. Those were what I wanted to know.
This has been touched on but not spelled out: how much other does she have in her life? Hobbies, friendships and school outside of the marriage? Even if the intention is for her to be a homemaker expecting to get nearly all her social support from one relationship is unrealistic in most cases. If you are her *everything* instead of her *biggest thing* then the only thing she is living for is your approval and you coming home, etc. When her anticipations change it is hard for her, *especially* if she is deriving her identity from external things (all you and her relationship with you) instead from within and her own life over all.Mar 32
- LinkedIn ynCh06That's women sir. We all face it. We both work but she still gets angry when I return past 6 because she returns aroud 4 and want me to be home early as well.
- - She needs to get a job for your perceptions of time and reality to converge.
- You need to communicate your feelings and present your vision for how to fix things (be less negative, be more flexible, etc.)
- Being half an hour late is a joke.
- Avoiding each other is passive aggressive behavior. You want peace, she wants attention.
- You only need to be worried if she is not reachable/teachable and/or you cannot see each other’s point.
- Educate yourselves in emotional intelligence.
- Wake up and get your priorities and shit straight! You made commitments to one another and now you’re losing your shit because you never learned how to communicate? Be apologetic, choose peace over choosing to be right. Worry about listening over being heard man!I’m sure you’re both great people but it sounds like you’re both being selfish right now. Just wait until the kiddos come. This is tea time compared the atomic bombs kids will throw into your sensitive marriage. Be good to her and remember the way you treated her when you were dating. This frustrates me! Marriage is the hardest “startup” journey in life with the biggest “payouts” I have ever received.
- My wife and I had a similar period like this in our late 20s. Same situation, i was working a lot and she was going to school. Small things like coming home late would trigger massive fights. Saw a counselor a couple times and that really helped.
Today we're happy, raising a child now, and rarely fight about anything.
- Just helped with talking things out with an objective 3rd person present to call either of us out on our bs, and made sure the conversation was constructive.
For us there were a lot of things. Some of it came down to my wife feeling inadequate as she was still in school, while myself and all her other friends had already started careers, were having kids, traveling the world, etc. She felt like she was being left behind.
I paid more attention to her needs. Included her more in work stuff. Encouraged and helped her with school stuff. Once she graduated and got a good job, she was 100x happier.
- I urge you to get couples counseling as this dynamic can quickly spiral out of control and you’re already overwhelmed with work.
- Sure! Couples counseling had saved my relationship a few times. A good counselor can offer an outside perspective when you’re deadlocked.. and give some tools to acknowledge differences. because people are so different in their perception it’s actually a big accomplishment to even live together
- eBay abababbbI mean she’s right..who wants to have a workaholic partner that spends saturdays in the office? But maybe you don’t like her anymore fine but don’t expect most of the girls to be excited when u decide to spend weekends in the office
- Yeah that's totally fair... but then I think it's like a downward spiral, where a small friction between us made me want to avoid her, and that made me doing more work, worsening the situation even further.
I'll spend more time with her in the coming weeks and see if things improve. Thanks for the comment!
- Divorce before children are involved. Having gotten divorced before I had children and again after (different spouses), I can attest that it’s a lot easier and with less complication without children which probably goes without saying.
- It isn’t dead-ish at all. You need to remind each other that you love one another and have been doing dumb things that get each other annoyed, which spirals into larger arguments.
I recommend 3 things:
1. Be more forgiving of one another.
2. Don’t sweat the small stuff. If you duck up, apologize and really try not to repeat it.
3. Figure out each other’s love language and work hard to satisfy those needs. Communicate with each other and work towards a solution.
Finally, grow up. Living with someone, even someone you adore, is difficult. Treat it like a high severity engineering problem: come up with a root cause and address it.
If you treat your coworkers with as little charity as you do your wife then you may have problems at work as well.
PM me if you need to talk.
- Thank you for the comment! I'll apologize to her tonight and talk through the problem. I'm usually a very sympathetic person at work and at home, but my one weakness is that I hate apologizing, and this time it definitely made things much worse...
As I mentioned elsewhere, I'll consciously plan out weekends and weeknights for us to connect and be more forgiving. Really appreciate the suggestions!
- You’re welcome.
My wife hated that too when we got married. She hated being wrong and admitting it even more. Then she screwed up royally, and I reacted very compassionately; I told her that it was ok to admit it because it could be forgiven. Now the phrase she used then is an inside when one of us messes up royally. It naturally defuses the situation.
For the first 3-5 years we were married we averaged a fight every 3-6 months. Now it’s every 9-18, and it’s not because we are accepting a bad outcome but we are better at voicing our issues before they become big problems. And when we do fight, we fight in private and fight fair.
- Also, give this a try: Timothy Keller: "The Meaning of Marriage" | Talks at Google https://youtu.be/C9THu0PZwwk via @YouTube
The speaker is Christian but IMO does a good job suppressing his Christian instincts and sharing a vision that is independent of religion.
- Cisco / EngGladiatorOne thing I can tell you that your wife still cares and loves you. Women will stop arguing or fighting if she totally gives up on you.
You have to constantly keep dating your partner, keep the flame going and growing. Buy her flowers occasionally, go to movies , dates or anything she enjoys at least once a week. Compliment her when she cooks for you or dresses up to look good for you. Some of these small gestures will cost you nothing and you will see the change soon. She will love you and appreciate you even more and you will see rewards for your efforts.
Happy to talk more, DM me if you want to talk. Give your wife and life a chance, work is important but great partner, friends and health is more important. You will not enjoy your success if you have no one to share it with and if you are not healthy to enjoy your success.
Wish you the best !!
Surprise your wife with flowers and a card or hand written note today or tomorrow. If you see the magic work, thank me later🙂
- It's a circle. You spend less time with her, she gets upset (because she wants your time/love), which makes you want to spend even less time with her.
Spend time with her, make her feel loved, let her not get the feeling she is a servant/roommate, discuss the little things and find a solution (how you sometimes have to stay late at work which means that she should have food on time and just keep yours in the refrigerator), take her out on a vacation, get her flowers, help her find a new social circle, help her engage in some hobby/fitness classes/job. See her transform.
Men and women tend to have different definitions of love, I learnt that from my failed relationships.
- New jlijlfdTake a week of vacation and travel somewhere exciting. Spend sometime in nice, warm an sunny place at the beach. Tell her you care about her more than your job.
All she needs is a constant assurance that you still love her.
- You’ve got a ton of comments here to digest. I’ve been there. Two books I can highly recommend (as well as marriage counselors I’ve seen):
The Five Love Languages (Chapman)
Way of the Superior Man (Deida)
If you truly want to “save” your marriage, read at least Love Languages and apply what you learn.
- I may have read the wrong chapters In the wrong book; when I told the friend who suggested them based on what men she knew had said, she seemed surprised by my critique. I see eliciting and giving clear communication as key, and letting people own their own emotions/not taking responsibility for other people’s feelings . Some of what Deida suggests indirectly does those things.
- Clear communication is definitely key, as is understanding and having empathy for your partner (see Love Languages).
For us, Deida was practically a break through and changed our relationship for the better. My wife almost completely agrees with what he wrote in Way of the Superior Man. Her initial reaction to him was negative, until she took time and analyzed it deeper, including her own introspection. YMMV.
- "I have lots of new tech I'd like to het my hands on" lol. Sorry but this sounded really lame.
- Adobe xbid57Nice going. So OP teared up once in his life because of how bad things were, and that's lame and should be treated dismissively, but he should make an effort to understand someone who basically sits on her ass and complains and tears up constantly for no good reason. Nice equality we have going on there.
- PayPal longlinesLol at all the millennial snowflake comments. We are so doomed as a society with all the people that can’t handle first world problems. No wonder Sanders and AOC are so popular.
- LinkedIn bimbambamThat’s common with women. The problem here seems to be that you have a tendency for conflict avoidance, rather than resolving conflict. If you are late to dinner, call her in advance, and is she is still pissed, then she has nothing in life right now other than making you happy with the food she cooked, so you should let her know that she should find friends to hang out with, rather than effing your brain with this h**rses**t. Dominate the convo and resolve, ask her to get a life and find other ways of self fulfillment, because you are busy breadwinning, at least at this of your lifetime as a couple, which she will only understand if and when she starts working. Resolve the conflict, never go to bed without resolving the conflict of that day with her. Also, your company must have EAP, use it for couple counseling. “Conflict avoidance” is your keyword here. Also, read the book “No More Mr. Nice Guy”.
- It is a good book and worth rereading AND doing the exercises. The book will teach you in part how to communicate more clearly. She likely needs to read No More Mister Nice Woman, if such book existed . It sounds as if she is not communicating and perhaps does not know what is really eating at her.
- Amazon makunahataAt the same place after 13 yrs and two kids. Constant arguments followed by days of radio silence and zero communication is a norm now. We have a roster for everything and it feels like living with a roommate more than a spouse.
- Anthem CC’I feel bad. I’m somewhat in the same situation. Just that I’m a little older in my late 20s and her being in early 20s. I’m just giving her time to realise the real world. I would say hang on, this too shall pass.
- Facebook nosoupforuFollow what others said if you want to make the marriage work and suffer for the rest of your life. If you want to be trust happy, get out and don’t get married ever again.
- Deep down I actually agree with what you’ve said - whenever my friends me about getting married, I always tell them to be careful and conservative with it. In an ideal world, yeah I’d probably just stay single if I knew what I know now, but seeing that it’s another person’s life I’d be impacting, divorcing is not close to an option at least at this point...
- WeWork / EngboiiiiiiI’m going through the same. 😅 you would think dating another software engineer would make each other more understanding of each other. Wrong. We argue even more. Especially if it’s about tech. We end up pouring relationship feelings into the argument. LOL like wtf haha
- Oracle LAoh31İ recommend reading "light her fire" and "light his fire". (https://www.amazon.com/Light-Her-Fire-Passion-Excitement/dp/0440212499) The set comes with a workbook for each side as well as a pack of CD's. İts not a new publication, but then again, marriage isnt a new concept either. Read both books together, and discuss as things come up and you want to comment. Thrn go through the workbooks. İf that doesnt save your marriage, then nothing will. Dont be cheap, buy the whole set. Best of luck.
- Gilead Sciences sidavisBe matured! Think about the other person, she is home all the time and it's common they get pissed off or get bored on routine things. Instead of making her wait with dishes, take her for dinner once in a while. Go out, plan a trip/vacation. Take a day off and have some family time.. you both are just 26 and married for 2yrs and u already think u lost interest in it? Think again, it works!!
- Broadcom Ltd. minarvaTake it easy n enjoy life with family. Think you’re going to school doing cooking dishes n home work with quietness n dullness of home alone
Spend a week off in that mode you will get the answers
Take a break go on vacation start again
Fight then take a break start again
This is circle of life