I often hear from wives whose husbands have told them that he no longer loves them.  They often don't want to accept this and some doubt if it's even true.  These women want to know if they have to accept this or if there is anything at all that they can do.  I often hear comments like: "my husband apparently doesn't love me any longer.  He wasn't cruel when he told me this. He just told me that he couldn't go on this way anymore when he knew in his heart he didn't love me in the way that he should or in the way that I deserve. I am trying to comprehend all of this and determine what it means.  We've both been under a great deal of stress financially and I feel like that is part of our problem.  But my husband won't accept this.  He says his feelings for me have changed and that there's nothing that either of us can do about this.  Is there any way for me to make him love me again?  Or do I just have to accept that his love for me (and possibly my marriage) is over?"

This decision is one that I can not make for anymore else.  But I do think that there are reasons that people can feel as if they've fallen out of love when in actuality, other factors are at play.  The woman who wrote to me admitted that the couple were stressed financially and had put their relationship on the back burner because they were basically just trying to get by from day to day.  But this had taken a huge toll on their relationship.  The wife couldn't help but feel that if the financial issues had never come up, the husband might not have these sudden changes in feelings.  And I would certainly see that she had a point.

A couple of years ago, my husband decided he didn't want to be married anymore after a period of stress for us.  I tended to handle it by clinging onto him more tightly and he apparently handled it by pushing me away and deciding that he didn't love me anymore and that he just wasn't suited for marriage.

I didn't want to accept this but my husband insisted he wasn't going to change his mind.  (Eventually, my husband did change his mind about loving me. But not before a lot of turmoil and making things worse by my insisting that he was wrong, that he would change his mind, and that he was being selfish and reacting too swiftly.  However, the more I pushed with these arguments, the more he dug in and insisted that he didn't love me and that he ABSOLUTELY wasn't going to change his mind.  This only made things worse for me. (You can read about how I turned this situation around and saved my marriage by clicking here.)

Below, I'll offer some suggestions on how best to handle it when your husband tells you that he doesn't love you any longer.

Don't Tell Your Husband That He's Wrong About Not Loving You.  Try To Remain Calm And Try To Listen To What He Is (And Isn't) Saying: I know that it's often your first inclination to either panic and beg your husband to reconsider or to become somewhat angry and insist that he is wrong.   Both reactions are normal but neither often works very well.   Because when you take this approach, you are basically making sure that you and your husband are on opposing sides.  This truly is the last thing that you want.

Basically, you need to set it up so that you're playing on the same team.  You want to make it look as if you are working with him rather than against him.  So resist any urge to argue, point out the flaws in his argument, or try to elicit his pity.  Instead, remain as calm as you can and listen.  Try to see if he keeps mentioning reoccurring themes.   Sometimes, our husbands do give us some very concrete clues as to what is behind this, but we are reacting so strongly that we miss his signals and his clues.   Right now, the best thing to do is to listen and take it all in, so that when the time comes to formulate a plan, you will be ready with the best one.

Now, I realize that often he will sometimes give you very vague reasoning.  Often, he will say things like "it's just how I feel but I don't know why."  Or "I can't put my finger on when or why things changed but they did.  I just don't feel the same way."  Although these vague comments can be maddening, it's my opinion that they're actually better than the alternative.  Because these vague reasons for him not loving you any longer are so much better than concrete reasons (like him not being attracted to you or there being someone else.)  These vague reasons can sometimes mean that it's the circumstances (and the stress) and not the feelings that he is reacting to.

When You Know (Or Hope) That He Really Does Still Love You (Even If He Doesn't Realize It,) What Can You Do?: Now that we're established that it's best to try not to panic or debate, where does this leave you?  What can you do while you're waiting for him to figure out that he was wrong about not loving you any longer?  Well, you paint yourself in the very best light.   You show yourself to be the patient, sympathetic, and loving woman that you know you are.  Rather than showing him someone who is panicked, combative, and more than willing to point out where he's wrong, show him the woman who still loves him even when he's struggling right now.  Show him that happy, understanding, vibrant woman that he first fell in love with.  Show him the woman that he initially fell in love with even when she's faced with a very difficult situation.

I know that I am asking a lot.  I very distinctly remember how I felt when my own husband told me that he no longer loved me.  It hurt. It was scary.  And it almost cost me my marriage.  But getting a hold of myself and pulling it together was actually the very best thing I could've done.  It's what turned things around and what made my husband realize that actually he still loved me very much.  If it helps you right now, you can read more of that story on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com

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