I recently heard from a wife who told me that her husband had firmly told her that he was "sick of" her lies and was considering a divorce. The wife had to admit that the husband was extremely justified in his frustration. In truth, the wife had lied to him early in their relationship. And, to cover up many of those early lies, she'd had to stretch the truth a bit for longer than she had intended. This had sort of blown up in her face and her husband was very fed up and had lost all patience.

She wanted to know if it was possible to save her marriage after her "history of lies." She wanted to know how to make her husband see that she had never been trying to be malicious, but she had been afraid that he would not find her attractive if he had known the truth about her past. And there were under concerns as well. The wife had recently caught the husband in his own lies. I guess he figured that he had more leeway since she had been dishonest first. He'd been telling her that he'd been working when he'd instead been going out with friends.

While none of these untruths were malicious, they still took their toll. It was understandable that the wife didn't want to divulge things about her past and her troubled family. But, she had never misrepresented or been untrue about her feelings for and commitment to her husband. I felt that making the husband understand this was going to be the key to saving the marriage. I will discuss this more in the following article.

Changing The Culture Of Lies In A Marriage: I felt that the first thing that the wife needed to do was to stress to both her husband and herself that there would be no more untruths. This needed to be true no matter what the subject matter was. I also felt that things might be improved if the wife sat her husband down and just came clean about everything. Trying to cover up all of the lies was becoming exhausting and was hurting her marriage. The husband needed to see that she was willing to be very vulnerable in order to make some heartfelt changes. And she also needed to make it clear that the husband did not need to worry about her lying and omitting the truth in the future.

I felt it best not to dwell on the husband's behavior. There was really no need to make things worse right now. Eventually, as things improved, other issues could have been addressed. But, this couple was already on incredibly shaky ground. So, there was no need to try to address multiple problems all at once. I suspected if the wife was able to lessen some of the resentment and tension, she would also begin to see some improvement in her husband's behavior.

Eliminating The "Walking On Eggshells" Environment: The wife understood that much of this situation was her fault. But, she was starting to very much resent always having to feel like the second class citizen in the marriage. She told me that she felt like she was "constantly walking on eggshells" and that she felt as though her husband was always just waiting for her to mess up. She knew that she mostly deserved it. But, it made it difficult for her to be spontaneous and comfortable.

This was absolutely understandable and it didn't need to continue. I felt that if she came clean, gave a heartfelt apology and then began acting appropriately to indicate that she was putting this behind her and expected for him to do the same, she might be pleasantly surprised. If she weren't happy with his response, she could always directly but calmly tell her husband that it made her unhappy to keep living this way and that she felt that doing so would undermine their efforts to be happy. (I had to take a similar stance during my own separation. You can read that story here.)

They were going to have a much greater chance of success if they could bring some lightheartedness into their home. This wasn't going to begin happening if they continued to dwell on what could not be changed. In truth, the husband was very attracted to the wife's dramatic and fun-loving personality. His continuing to harp on what was in the past was only going to eventually choke this out.

I felt the wife should set the tone with her own attitude and behaviors, he would eventually follow along. Granted, a history of lies is not the best way to begin a marriage. But, there were a lot of things that drew these two people together. And, they did love one another and now had a family to consider. They couldn't change what was in the past, but they could define a new, better, and much more honest future.

There was a time that I thought my marriage was truly at its end. My husband was resentful, distant, and withdrawn. He eventually moved out and pursued a separation. I had feared this for a long time. Thankfully, even though I had doubts, I decided to try one last thing, to give a little more, and to approach it in a new way. This eventually worked. You can read that story on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com.

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