I Miss My Husband So Much During Our Separation That It Hurts: Tips And Advice That Might Help

I recently got heartbreaking correspondence from a young wife who was going through a separation.   They had been separated for about a month because this is what the husband wanted.  The wife’s primary goal was ending the separation and getting back together.  But she knew better than to push it.  She’d read some of my articles and knew that I advocate moving very slowly and deliberately during a separation.  So she knew not to push him and to take things slowly while focusing just on improving the relationship rather than dwelling on what they were calling it – or rather they were saying they were separated.

Still, she was struggling.  She said “I miss my husband so much during the separation that it physically hurts.  I am struggling every single day.  The more time I spend away from him, the more desperate I feel to get him back.  I have to literally physically hold myself back from reaching for the phone sometimes.  I’ll be flipping through the TV and I’ll see some shows that we liked to watch together and I’ll burst into tears.  How do I cope with this.  How do I get a hold of myself?”

I so felt for this wife.  I experienced the exact same thing while my husband and I were separated.  And I know this is unbearably hard.  But, the wife was right in her suspicions that if she let her husband see her like this, it was probably going to make things worse.  She couldn’t help how she felt of course.  But this was something she also shouldn’t share with her husband until later, at least in my experience.

So in the following article, I’m going to go over some tips that will hopefully give you some support when you’re separated, missing your husband horribly, but trying to play it the right way so that you can get him back.

I Know That You Miss Him.  But Do Whatever You Need To Do To Distract Yourself And Reevaluate Before You Act:  The wife repeatedly told me that she was constantly tempted to call, text, or come by.  Sometimes, her husband was still receptive to her so it was tempting to not want to contact him often to “feel him out.”

I do understand.  But allowing him to take the lead sometimes is almost always the right call.  If you are always the one initiating the contact, then he starts to feel as if there’s no give and take and this devalues you in his eyes – as strange as that sounds.

You’re too transparent and too easy to read.  He knows that you are hanging on his every word and basing the happiness of your day on what happens with him.  Even if this is true, this is not what he should think.

So what do you when you can’t stop calling, texting, or thinking about him?  You do whatever it takes to distract yourself.  This became such a problem for me that I had to physically remove myself from the situation.  I went out of town to stay with family and friends because I knew this was probably the only decent way to keep me from getting out of control and going overboard.

And this was the turning point.  A while after I did this, my husband’s attitude changed.  It wasn’t an immediate process, but it was quite noticeable.  Thankfully, I was smart enough to capitalize on this.

Yes, it was tempting to sigh with relief and beg him to call off the separation.  But everything I was reading told me this was the wrong call.  So I kept in contact but I didn’t come on too strong and I tried to create a little mystery.

I’m So Afraid That He Will Forget About Me Or Move On During Our Separation.  What If He Doesn’t Miss Me At All?:  In this situation, many wives worry that if they don’t constantly keep in touch, their husband will begin moving on because he doesn’t miss them as much as they miss him.  Frankly, if you contact him too much, you make him not missing you MORE LIKELY.

He may feel that he needs to prolong the separation just to get a break.  I have to tell you this.  Very few men visit my blog and tell me that they want to end the separation because their wife wore them down.  Instead, they just want the separation more when she acts like this.

But, many tell me that they decided to end the separation because their wife presented herself in such a way that it changed their perceptions about her and made them want to be with her again.  Please stay the course.

I know you miss your husband.  He might well miss you more than he is letting on.  But give him a chance to miss you so much that he will want to come back through his own free will.

I’m not saying that you should never call or just ignore the situation.  I’m just saying that there has to be a somewhat balanced give and take.  He has to feel like you are worth chasing a little bit.  If you both have to work for it, it’s perceived as much more valuable.

I know all of this because I was in the same situation myself.  I didn’t want to back off while I missed my husband so much.  But as I said, my backing off which changed the whole thing.  You can read this story on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com.  I’m certainly no expert but this is what worked for me.  If you’ve not yet watched T Jackson’s free video on this exact topic, you can see it on the right side of this blog.  It’s free and worth checking out.  It taught me a lot.

My Husband Moved Out After A Fight That Didn’t Even Seem That Bad

There are different things that will cause or stimulate a marital separation.  Some couples drift apart and begin to question their marriage.  Other spouses have very big and troublesome issues to overcome. And then there is a small subset of people who are sort of scratching their heads because the stimulus for their separation seems so petty and small.  One example is that of the fight that seemed to be about nothing but became a serious threat to the marriage.

A wife might describe the fight like this, “my husband and I were driving to a family dinner to his parents.  We’d had a terrible week and neither of us wanted to go to this dinner, so we bickered the whole way.  Before I knew it, things had escalated so badly and then my husband slammed his fists on the steering wheel and said ‘I am done with this marriage.’  I thought he was just being a baby, so I said under my breath, ‘sure you are.’  Then he responded with ‘you’ll see.’  That night as soon as we got home, he packed his bags and left.  He has not been back since.  He says that he wants a separation because we fight too much.  We do fight, but it’s always about silly things and then we both take it too far.  I think that it’s ridiculous that now our marriage might end because we were bickering during a car ride, but apparently, my husband doesn’t see it this way.”

Believe it or not, what you’re experiencing is not uncommon. I hear from a lot of people who separated after just one weird fight.  I am not sure if it will help, but I have a couple of theories as to why this happens.  I also have some suggestions as to what you can attempt to do about it.

Why That One Fight Might Lead To A Separation:  Most experts will tell you that it’s not likely that one fight is truly the cause of your separation.  Rather, it is the underlying issue or issues that this one fight represents.  Perhaps this is an issue that you just haven’t been able to effectively deal with.  Perhaps the fight is shedding light on the anger and resentment that are just below the surface or your marriage.  Often, it is just the cumulation of things that have built up prior to the fight.  My grandmother used to say that a fight about taking out the trash or replacing the toilet paper is not about either one of those things.  She used to say that if you looked really hard, you could always find the underlying cause, but she insisted that it was never about household chores.

One more issue to consider is HOW you fight.  I once had a therapist tell me that she could predict separation or divorce based on how a couple fought in her office.  She said that if a couple tended to tear one another down and personally attack, then there was a very high indication that this style of fighting would eventually damage the marriage.  She stressed that it’s important to direct your frustration at the issues – and not at your spouse.  For example, it’s understandable to be frustrated when you don’t have time to handle yet one more obligation for your spouses’ parents, but don’t make your frustration personal to your spouse because it’s his parents that you are talking about.

So if your fighting style is one of attack rather than negotiation, it’s very important to change that, or you might always have these reoccurring issues.

Moving Forward:  I understand why it feels unfair to potentially lose your marriage over one incident, but try to see this as an opportunity to get to the root of the problem underneath that fight.  As I said before, the separation is probably not due to one fight, so reconciling might not come down to just forgiving each other for the fight.  You want to take this opportunity to address whatever needs addressing so that you don’t end up facing the same old issues down the road.  One way to begin to do this is to try to soothe the high drama that is going on right now.  Time should definitely help, but when you talk to or communicate with your spouse, try to be calm and empathetic.  If you feel that you owe your spouse an apology for your part in the fight, this is not the time to hold back.  Sincerely apologize. Acknowledge that things got out of hand and tell him that you want to do better moving forward.  Make it a point to stay in close contact and to get along with a spirit of cooperation.  You don’t need to talk about your problems before the time is right and before you are ready.  But as things calm down between you, you’ll want to address what contributed to the blow up that caused the separation.  A counselor is probably the most efficient way to do this, but having a loving and honest conversation is a good place to start.

The good news is that when a spouse truly overreacts after a fight, he will often calm down and realize it.  If there are truly no huge underlying issues, finding your way back to your marriage may just require a lot of honest conversation.  But if there was a long lead up and the fight is just the icing on the cake, then consider counseling or further examination.  This is your marriage that we are talking about. It’s important to be honest and to eliminate what is contributing to the issues so that you can heal, reconcile, move on, and have a healthy and happy marriage.

My husband and I did have a string of fights before our separation.  But I think that the distance that had developed between us meant that we could no longer shrug off minor things or feel the empathy that was needed to just move on.  We did separate, but thankfully I learned a few things that helped us to reconcile. You can read more on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com

Things To Do During A Trial Separation To Save Your Marriage

By Leslie Cane: I sometimes hear from panicked folks who worry that their trial separation is going to mean that they can’t save their marriage. They are often concerned that since they are no longer living with their spouse, they aren’t going to have the access required to improve their marriage enough so that it can be saved.

Common concerns are things like: “I didn’t want to separate from my husband, but he insisted. He says he feels like we need some time apart. I have tried to reason with him, but nothing has worked. He has assured me that he has no plans to file for divorce. He says that we should just wait and see how things go between us during the separation before we make any decisions about our marriage. The thing is, I want to save my marriage during the separation. The idea of losing my husband is not one that I can face. Is there anything that I can do to save my marriage during the separation?”

It’s my opinion and belief that there is plenty that you can do. I believe that my actions during my own separation ultimately saved my marriage. Unfortunately, I didn’t always do or say the right things, especially in the beginning. But over time I was able to try and tweak some strategies that ultimately made some very big improvements. I will go over some of those things below.

Allow Your Spouse The Chance To Miss You: I find that this is probably the most common mistake that people make. It’s absolutely normal to panic and to be affected by fear when you are separated. You expect and fear the worst. And this can inspire you to do things that hurt you rather than help you. Specifically, during this time, people have the tendency to cling very tightly to the spouse who had told them very clearly that he needs space.

I am certainly not saying that you should ignore your spouse or not make yourself available when your spouse is reaching out to you. But so often, people call, text, or come by constantly so that they are not giving their spouse the time that he has asked for and they are not giving their spouse the opportunity to miss them. The most common reason that people give for beginning to change their mind about the separation is that they found that they missed their spouse and that they realized that they took their spouse for granted or that they should have been more flexible or accommodating.

This process can make your spouse much more open minded and patient when it comes to working through your problems. But if you don’t give your spouse the opportunity to miss you, then you may miss out on the positive improvements that this process can bring about.  If you fear that you are coming on too strong during separation, back off a bit and see if things brings any improvement.

Take This Time To Work On Yourself And To Reevaluate The Issues That Divided You: Not all spouses will agree to couples counseling during the separation. And many spouses who want to save their marriage become very discouraged about this. But, nothing says that you can not go to individual counseling or do some individual work if you think that this would benefit you. Often, the separation gives you the time and the introspection that you might not otherwise have had. Take the opportunity to really examine your issues more objectively and ask yourself what you can do differently this time in order to get a different result. It’s very common for people to become more open minded and flexible during the separation because the distance has given them a little more objectivity that they didn’t otherwise have.

And working on yourself and becoming as healthy and as strong as you can be as an individual is only going to help your marriage. There is no need to put your own healing on hold or to wait to see what is going to happen with your marriage. Self work is always going to benefit you and you probably have more time on your hands right now.

Allow Your Spouse To See That You Can Still Connect In A Very Positive Way: As I alluded to before, fear can cause you to act in ways that you know are destructive and unnecessary. Fear can bring out the worst in you when you know deep down that you should instead be putting forward your best. So many couples find themselves actually arguing just as much or more during the separation because of the fear and uncertainty. Please do not fall into this trap. It’s so important that you show your spouse that not only can the two of you get along, but you can connect in a meaningful and light hearted way.

Always show your spouse someone who is cooperative, light hearted, and loving, especially when you are separated. Because your spouse is often trying to evaluate if there are any romantic feelings or if the spark is still there. But if you argue with your spouse every time you interact or if you behave in an abrasive or accusatory manner, then your spouse isn’t able to see that the feelings are still there. Alternatively, if you allow your spouse to see the fun loving, sweet, and exciting person that he fell in love with, then he is just naturally going to consider maintaining the marriage in order to get that back.

I am not saying that you have to act insincere or to portray things that you aren’t actually feeling. Your spouse would be able to see through this anyway. But what I am encouraging you to do is to bring forth the most positive thinking attitude that you possibly can. Because people tend to think favorably toward those who make them feel positively while they pull away from those who invoke negativity. You don’t want for your husband to think you bring him down every time you communicate. Because once this happens, he will start to avoid you. Instead, you want him to get a lift every time that you are together so that he is willing to spend more and more time together so that you can rediscover one another.

I’d like to make one more point. Many people will try to solve their major issues while they are separated. This is an important consideration, but I would suggest that you attempt this very gradually. Often, when your marriage is on shaky ground, it can’t withstand you putting it under a microscope and constantly drawing your spouse’s attention to your problems. My suggestion would be to only focus on your problems as your progress allows.

I hope I’ve shown you that you can save your marriage during your separation.  But in order to do so you will often need to be very deliberate with your actions.  It took me too long to learn this, but I did learn it.  And this knowledge enabled me to save my marriage.  If it helps, you can read the whole story on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com

Does The Trial Separation Help Marriage?

I sometimes hear from people who are facing the idea of a trial marital separation.  Many of them don’t want the separation or are very reluctant about it.  However, their reluctance is unfortunately met with a spouse who is sure that the separation might actually benefit or help their marriage.  Understandably, many spouses are reluctant to believe this and worry that their spouse has an ulterior motive.  For example, a wife might say, ” my husband has been talking about a trial separation for about four months.  Last weekend, he actually looked at apartments.  It is starting to dawn on me that this is actually going to happen.  I am so worried that we are going to end up divorced.  But when I bring these concerns up to my husband, he acts as if this is actually going to help our marriage.  He describes the whole thing as just, ‘slowing down to catch our breath and to enhance our marriage.”  Frankly, I think this could all be posturing.  Sometimes I feel like he’s only trying to get me to agree to the separation so that he can eventually divorce me.  Or at least so that he can experiment with being single in order to see if he actually wants to pursue a divorce.  I want to give him the benefit of trying to believe what he says, but it’s difficult.  Does his argument have merit?  Can trial separations actually help or enhance your marriage?”

I believe that in the right circumstances, they can help sometimes.  I’ve definitely seen some marriages helped during a trial separation, but I’ve seen plenty of marriages that have been hurt by separating (or that have even ended because of it.)  I do notice trends in both groups.  So, below, I’ll go over some common denominators of the couples whose marriage is actually helped by the separation.

It Helps When You Have A Plan:  Without any doubt, the marriages that I see hurt the most by the trial separation are the ones where the decision has been made in haste and at the height of emotion.  This happens when there has been a huge fight or things have deteriorated so much that one or both people just throw up their hands and walk away for a while.   While this can be understandable, it can also be damaging.   Generally, these folks don’t have any plan.  They just want a break.

The problem is that without a plan, the marriage and / or the reconciliation just sort of flounders.  Both people can be waiting for the other to make the first move or to take the initiative and then things just get awkward.  So after a while, the couple are not only not getting along, but they’re having a hard time communicating, so the issues with the marriage only get worse.

If you absolutely can not avoid separating, then make it work to your advantage.  Have a very detailed, methodical plan. Find a counselor and make appointments ahead of time.  Do not leave anything to chance.  Having to meet regularly for counseling will help to avoid many of the pitfalls that couples with no plan fall into.

It Helps When Both People Are Committed To Making A Good Faith Effort:  When people leave their marriages for a separation and indicate that they’re going to “see” or “gauge” how they feel during it, that’s always somewhat troubling.  In some cases, they actually do end up missing their spouse so things work out to the benefit of their marriage.  But in other cases, they sort of just drift apart.  In my observation, a trial separation works best when both people can say, “listen, we really want to stay married so we’re going to come together regularly with that shared goal.  But right now, we’re just going to take a break.”  When you come at it from this angle, you’ve set an agreement where you’re going to be working together toward keeping your family in tact if it is at all possible.  When you make this commitment, it drives the actions that you take and the behaviors that you embrace during your separation for a much better outcome.

It Helps To Agree To Checking In Regularly And To Work Toward Improvements:  Following up on the above, when you’re both committed to making the marriage better, the natural progression of this is to regularly check in with one another and honestly discuss what has been working and what hasn’t.  This allows you to stop whatever is deteriorating the marriage and to continue on with (and hopefully increase) what is actually improving things.  It is very helpful to openly talk about this because what you find to be helpful (and what you think is working) could be very different from your husband’s perceptions.  Anything that you can do to put these things on the table and be honest about them makes a successful reconciliation much more likely.

Couples That Learn From The Separation Can Have Stronger Marriages:  When I hear from couples who tell me that their marriage is better after their separation, most admit that the separation made them appreciate their spouse more.  When they were alone, they often realized how much they took their spouse for granted or how much comfort their spouse’s presence actually gave them.  These insights can increase feelings of intimacy and allow a sense of “us against the world” that can actually enhance your marriage.  Because you don’t want to separate again, you’re more likely to address problems the second that they come up and fight really hard to make your marriage work.

To answer the original question, with intention, the separation CAN improve some marriages.  You have a much greater chance of this if you go in with a plan, commit to regular communication and checking in, and commit to making a very strong effort toward clear improvements.  However, if you just “wait and see” what happens and don’t regularly communicate or strive to improve things, then sometimes the separation will actually make the marriage worse and contribute to a divorce.

I wish I could tell you that my husband and I followed the above advice during our own separation, but this just isn’t true.  My husband wanted to “wait and see” how things progressed.  We grew apart, things became difficult, and we almost divorced.  Luckily, I was able to educate myself and change course.  But I truly believe that if we had continued to leave things to chance, we might be divorced today.  There’s more about this on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com

My Husband Is Ignorning My Calls During Our Separation. How Should I Handle This?

By Leslie Cane:   I often hear from women who are struggling while they are in a martial separation.  Sometimes, things aren’t going as they had hoped and, since they are separated and don’t have unlimited access to their husband, they aren’t sure about how to handle these issues.  One very common issue is that of phone calls or communication.  Reaching out while you are separated can be hard enough.  But when your husband doesn’t respond as you had expected (or doesn’t respond at all) this can leave you wondering about your next step.

I recently heard from a wife who felt like her husband was ignoring her phone calls during a martial separation.  She said, in part: “for the first couple of days after we were separated, we talked on the phone regularly.  He even called me a couple of times.  But for the last few weeks, my husband has completely ignored my phone calls.  I leave messages.  I call during times that I know that he should be home.  But no matter when I call or what I say, he won’t pick up.  How am I supposed to respond to this? Does this mean that things have changed and that he’s distancing himself from me?  I was very worried that this was going to happen.  When my husband first asked for a separation, I was very reluctant because I suspected that his plan all along was to divorce me because he wasn’t really interested in saving the marriage.  His behavior and his ignoring my calls seems to be confirming that.  How can I find out why he’s ignoring me?  What’s the best way to handle this?”

There are many tricky issues such as this one that can come up during your separation.  Contact is a very common one.  Many wives in this situation intuitively know that how they handle this may well affect the outcome of the separation.  You can have some tough choices to make when you don’t want to keep calling and coming on too strongly, but you don’t want to just let your husband go.  And if you wait on him to call you, then you can really worry that the call is never going to come.  In the following article, I’ll offer some suggestions and considerations on how to handle it when your husband is ignoring your calls while you’re separated.

There Are Various Reasons That Husbands Ignore Your Calls During The Separation. Not All Of These Reasons Are Negative: Many wives will assume that their husband ignoring their phone calls mean that he doesn’t want to hear from them, that he’s sending a negative message, or that this is the first step of him completely distancing himself from his wife and from his marriage.  Sometimes, these assumptions may be at least somewhat accurate.  But, every husband who doesn’t immediately call his wife back during the separation has negative motivations.

Sometimes, the husband is just trying to take some time for himself and he wants some distance in order to be able to fully explore his feelings and thoughts.  (In fact, this is one reason that many husbands will give you for wanting a separation.) And often, when they feel that they aren’t getting this, they will do things to assert themselves or to make it more likely that they will get what they have asked for.  So, this is just one of many possibilities.

It can be a mistake to assume the worst or to allow your mind to immediately jump to the worst case scenario.  And usually when this happens, there’s a real risk that you will over reach, keep calling, and make things even worse.  I’ve had husbands in this situation tell me that that their wife’s insistence that he finally pay attention to her rose to an alarming level.  (I’ve even heard the word stalking used a time or two. This happened to me in my own situation when I was trying to save my marriage.)

This is an easy trap to fall into, but I’d recommend making every effort to avoid this if it’s at all possible.  I’ll discuss how right now.

How To Handle It When You’re Husband Is Ignoring Your Calls During The Separation: As I see it (and from my own experience,) you have two options.  You can continue to reach out in the hopes that he will eventually respond(at a risk, of course.)  Or, you can back off a little bit as a strategic decision.  It’s my experience that although backing off can feel just wrong, risky, and vulnerable, it actually has a much higher success rate.

The reason for this is that often backing off will give him more of that time and space that he was after. And it will create some mystery and suspense, which should place you in a more favorable light.  (In contrast, often continuing on with a strategy that hasn’t worked and continuing to call will put you in a more negative light.)

I know that even thinking about backing off can be difficult, but try to focus on the long term objective instead of the short term one.  The wife in this situation wanted to make one more call.  I got her to agree to this so long as in the next call, she alluded to the fact that she was going to be taking some time for herself and wouldn’t be in touch so much.  As such, she’d just wait to hear from him.

Many wives are very uncomfortable with backing off.  They feel that they need to know why their husband is avoiding them and ignoring their calls.  So many will ratchet up their calls, follow him, or arrange to demand answers face to face.  But I have to tell you that rarely do I see these methods work.  Instead, it usually makes the husband want to retreat even more.

Many wives tell me that, although they understand why I’m asking them to back off, they just aren’t sure that they can do it.  It goes against every instinct that they have because they worry that they can feel him slipping away.  If this rings true for you, see if taking some time away would help.  In my own case, I forced myself to leave town and this helped tremendously.  Or, if that’s not an option ask yourself what is the least that you can do and still feel like you’re in touch.  For example, maybe you can send only one quick text or email instead of continuing to call.  Maybe you will promise yourself  that you’ll give it one more day.  Whatever you can do to keep yourself from coming on too strong or panicking will usually give you a better result, at least in my opinion.

How do I know this?  Because I lived it.  I had to use this same strategy when I was separated from my own husband.  And looking back, I have to tell you that this was probably the only thing that would have worked.  If it helps, you can read more of that story on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com

Why Does He Want A Divorce When He Says He Still Loves Me?

By: Leslie Cane: I sometimes hear from women who are extremely confused and horribly hurt. Their husband has told them that he wants a divorce. And, if this isn’t bad enough, he’s insisting that he still loves them. I heard from a wife who said: “out of the blue, my husband took me out to dinner and said that he had something very important to tell me but that he knew that this news was going to hurt me. Then, he confessed that he no longer wanted to be married to me and that he’s seeking a divorce. I was stunned into several moments of silence. Then, I asked him why. He wasn’t giving me any decent answers so I blurted out ‘don’t you love me anymore’ to which he replied that he will always love me. I told him he was talking about pity love or about the way you would love a friend and he said that no, he was still in love with me romantically but didn’t want to be married to me anymore. I don’t understand this. Why would a man love his wife but want to divorce her?” I will try to answer this baffling question in the following article.

Sometimes, Love Doesn’t Have As Much To Do With It As You Might Suspect: I would say that about 90 percent of the people who visit my blog believe that a divorce means that at least one of the spouses no longer loves the other. This isn’t the case. Very often, people file for divorce (or even go through with it and end their marriage) when they still love their spouse very much. But sometimes, they think that this same love just isn’t enough anymore.

He May See The Marriage As Something That Is Holding Him Back Or Making Him Unhappy: Clearly, I didn’t know this wife or her husband, so I couldn’t guess at specifics. But sometimes, there is a perception that no longer being married would give him some freedom or relieve some burden. I am not saying that this is at all true. I’m just saying that this is sometimes the perception. Some men seem to think that being married is keeping them from pursuing their dreams or is keeping them from being the man that they need to be. Another possibility is that the man thinks that the conflicts or the dynamics in the marriage are emotionally bringing him down in some way. Again, I can’t possibly know the situation, but you can take a close look at your marriage to see if any of these things apply to you.

Despite The Love, There Is A Deal Breaking Issue That He Just Can’t Get Past: Sometimes, there is an issue that keeps coming up again and again that doesn’t appear to be disappearing any time soon. Sometimes, this is things like monetary issues, sex, infidelity, or an inability to work through the couple’s differences. On my blog, it’s pretty clear to me that men seem to have a shorter patience span with deal breaking issues than women. This isn’t true in all marriages of course. But generally speaking, the husbands tend to be less willing to give an issue some time to work itself out, while the wives have much more patience.

He Has Some Romantic Notion Of Being Single: I feel that I have to mention this. I’ve noticed that some men (particularly when they get to be a certain age) tend to develop a sort of romantic or naive notion about being single. Some of them look around and see young, single coworkers or newly divorced older men, and they begin to believe that these single men really have it made. This isn’t usually the reality of the situation, of course. But this is what they sometimes believe. And they can actually think that as soon as they are single, they will suddenly be blissfully happy. Many are disappointed to find that this isn’t the case at all.

He May Not Really Want A Divorce. He May Just Want A Reaction: There is always the possibility that he doesn’t really want a divorce, but it does want a reaction. It’s not uncommon for men to have this talk in the hopes that the wife will suddenly make concessions or suddenly be very agreeable in the marriage. This isn’t playing fair, but some men will try this.

Take Heart In The Fact That The Love Is Still There And No Divorce Has Been Filed For Or Finalized: I know that this situation hurts. I know that this is a scary time. But not all couples in this situation still have the love. And the love is your ace in the hole. It what means that there is still a lot of hope.

Quite frankly, many couples change their mind about the divorce. Many people file for divorce (or say they intend to file for divorce) and are eventually still very happily married. So don’t assume that his talk means you are most definitely going to get a divorce. Nothing says this is true. He does love you and, with a very workable plan, I believe that some women in this situation will be able to save their marriage and avoid a divorce because this was true for me.

Despite the fact that my husband was insisting on a divorce, I did eventually save my marriage and we are very happily married today.  It took work, patience, and a very sound strategy, but I was able to turn things around.  If it helps you can read the whole story on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com

Should You Stay With A Spouse Who You Know Isn’t In Love With You Anymore?

I sometimes hear from wives who truly want to stay in or save their marriages. However, they are dealing with a husband who doesn’t seem to love them in the way that he used to. Often, he is not at all secretive about this. His lack of affection can be fairly obvious and worse, some husbands will freely admit that they are no longer “in love” with their spouse, (although some don’t leave immediately and agree to stay temporarily.) This can leave a wife wondering what she is supposed to do with this information. Knowing that he’s not going to leave tomorrow can be comforting. But knowing that you might be sentenced to a life without love is not comforting at all.

A wife might say, “I’ve suspected that my husband isn’t in love with me for a couple of years. I am an optimist and I always hope for the best. But I have eyes. I am fairly observant. A couple of years ago, my husband started to openly stare at other women. He would ignore me or barely listen to me when we talked. He stopped making an effort to spend time with me. I braced myself for him to seek a separation or divorce. When he didn’t (and when things didn’t get any better) I finally confronted him and said that I didn’t think he loved me anymore. I sort of expected for him to deny it to try to save my feelings. But he didn’t. He admitted that he loves me, but that he hasn’t been ‘in love with me’ for quite a long time. Then he said he didn’t plan to do anything about it for the time being because of our kids. He said he would never even consider a separation or divorce until our kids are grown. This doesn’t make me feel much better. I mean, I also feel strongly that we should stay together for the kids, but I am not sure if I want a husband who isn’t in love with me. My friend said I shouldn’t stay and that I should just cut my losses. Is she right?”

I can’t answer that question, but I can give you some things to think about. I was separated for a while in my own marriage, in part because my husband had lost some feelings for me and we had some issues that divided us. Most of our friends thought that we were going to divorce because even though I was making what I thought was a valiant effort to save my marriage, my husband just wasn’t into it.  At the end of the day, however, we did reconcile and I truly believe that we love each other very much, but it was a long process where I had to make strides with him when I was able to do so.

Why Feelings Can Change: The point that I am making is that feelings wax and wane. If you put attention and effort back into your marriage, you sometimes find those feelings coming back. I’ve seen countless husbands who’ve claimed to no longer be in love with their wife eventually find their way back to their loving marriage again. So, I wouldn’t just write your husband off. Feelings change when the circumstances change.

Setting Up The Transformation: Since you know that your husband likely isn’t going anywhere, doesn’t it make sense to try to repair and prioritize your marriage so that perhaps the feelings will come back? I don’t want to insinuate that this is solely your responsibility. It isn’t. But sometimes, it’s useful to take an honest look at your marriage and ask yourself what might be contributing to your husband’s feelings. If you can address those things, it’s often a good start to setting up the circumstances so that the feelings return.

In my own case, I was constantly trying to analyze my marriage and tear down what I thought wasn’t working. This did more harm than good because my fragile marriage was just not in any state for this. So I started very small. I just tried to interact with my husband in a positive way and laugh when we were able. I kept my goals very modest – to have good interactions and then to gradually schedule new interactions. I tried to turn down the pressure and to keep things low key and easy. Slowly, gradually, this gave us a comfort and ease that allowed the intimacy to begin to return. Once we felt bonded again, only then did we tackle our toughest issues.

But, along the way, we went from one of us being unsure about our feelings to both of us being very sure simply because we changed the way that we were relating to one another and we were able to eventually erase our most problematic issues. If I could pick what you took from this article, it would be that a husband saying he’s not “in love” with you doesn’t necessarily mean the end of your marriage. Yes, it can mean there’s a lot of work to do. But many of us have lukewarm husbands before or during the separation who turn into attentive and loving husbands once we’ve been successful in saving our marriage. There’s more about my own process at  http://isavedmymarriage.com

Why Do Husbands Leave Good And Loving Wives?

I hear from separated wives (and also from the friends and family that love them) who have no idea which behaviors on her part contributed to the separation. Often, even the husband himself will admit that the wife was basically above reproach. When the wife knows that she did nothing wrong and truly feels that she was a decent, loving, and loyal spouse, where does this leave her? And why would someone want to separate from a spouse like this?

The wife might say, “I don’t want to brag on myself. Doing so makes me quite uncomfortable. But everyone says that I’m a great wife. I can’t think of anything that I’ve ever done to offend my husband or to make him truly angry. I never wronged him in any serious way. I always put his needs ahead of mine. We never really argued. But a couple months back, I started to notice that my husband seemed restless. He insisted that we take an extended vacation to try to spice things up. This was difficult for me to accomplish, but I did. Still, the vacation probably wasn’t as relaxed or carefree as my husband might have liked, so again, he was dissatisfied. Lately, it seems as if my husband would like to have a life with very little responsibility and drama, but unfortunately, this is not my reality. I have a job, aging parents, and kids who depend on me. I still tried to make the vacation work, though. I still always try to put my husband first. But I guess it doesn’t matter because he still is living somewhere else and he calls us separated. I feel like all of this is somewhat unfair. I’ve always tried to do everything right and it was not good enough. Some of my friends are in the same boat. Why do men leave good, faithful, loving wives?”

They Look At Places Besides Themselves To Address Their Problems: The reasons that husbands will give you for the separation will vary. Most other people will tell you that the men are going through a typical midlife crisis, but I’m not sure that this explains everything. Some men become dissatisfied with their life and they incorrectly identify the problem. They begin to think that perhaps it is their wife or their marriage that is to blame.  It is just human nature to not want to look at yourself as the cause.

They Take Your Generosity And Loving Spirit For Granted: Another thing that I see frequently happen is that the husband takes the wife for granted precisely because she’s so loyal and loving. Those attributes which should be prized and appreciated actually begin to work against her because she’s so reliable that he begins to think that she will always be there no matter what he does.

They Think That Deserve Complete Happiness Right This Second: Often, men suspect that they should give themselves the opportunity to see if the grass is greener somewhere else. They will tell themselves that life is too short not to be as happy as they can possibly be. Some of these husbands find out later that they were actually happier at home. But of course, by then, the damage has already been done.

It’s Not You.  It’s The Issues: Finally, even marriages with great, outstanding spouses can have problems and issues. I like to think that both my husband and myself were considerate and loving spouses and yet, there was a time when we were separated because we’d allowed a distance and a decay in our marriage that sort of caused us to turn on one another and to lose our intimacy. This wasn’t necessarily anyone’s fault. It can be extremely difficult to juggle the priorities that life presents to us and still keep our marriage as fresh as it should be.

I know that none of these reasons helps you right now. It can be very difficult when you can’t control what your spouse thinks, feels, or does. It is a very helpless feeling. It’s very hard not to take it personally. After a lot of frustration with this during my own separation, I learned to stop trying to control anyone but myself. I had no choice but to place my focus on myself. At first, it felt selfish and odd. Like you, I’d always put others first. But when you make yourself a priority, you are teaching other people how to treat you. I found that I tended to get a lot more respect that way. This actually improved my marriage because I became more assertive and I learned to ask for what I wanted. I also did not allow myself to be taken as granted as much.

The good news it that many husbands do eventually come to realize your value and they realize that they are no happier without you. Often, the time away eventually gives them a different perspective on you and on your marriage. But that doesn’t make the uncertainty of the separation any easier. Still, take pride in the fact that you did nothing wrong and can be proud of your behavior in your marriage. Not everyone can say this. I totally believe in karma, so if it’s any consolation, your loving behavior should eventually be rewarded, even if it doesn’t feel like it right now. In the meantime, it helps to try to deal with your husband in an upbeat and positive way. This helps to keep communication open and in some cases, it increases the chances of a reconciliation.  You can read more about how I brought about my own reconciliation at  http://isavedmymarriage.com

Will My Husband Come Back After The Separation? Here’s How To Make Sure That He Does

I sometimes hear from wives who are trying to set it up to have the best chance that their husband is going to come back to them after the separation.  They often ask me how they can tell if he’s actually going to come back.

I often hear comments: “will my husband come back after our separation? How can I make sure that he does?  I miss him so much.  I don’t want to lose him.  He’s staying with some friends and sometimes I think he’s happier apart.  He says he still doesn’t know what he wants or what he has decided about the separation so I’m trying not to push.  But I don’t know what I’ll do if he doesn’t come back.  What is the best plan of attack?”

I will discuss these questions and concerns in the following article.

Setting It Up To Make Sure That You Have The Best Chance Of Him Coming Back After The Separation:  There will come a time during this process where your husband will need to make a decision about where he stands and what he wants to do after the separation.  Usually, he’ll either decide that he needs more time, that he wants to come back to you, or that he wants to go ahead and stay apart and pursue a divorce or perhaps a legal or longer separation.

Obviously, when he goes to make this decision, you want for him to think as favorably about you as is possible.  And, you may have some work to do between that day and this because if you’re separated, it’s probably safe to say that things weren’t going all that great with your marriage right before he left.

So you’ll likely have to change his mind about some things.  And it’s vitally important that you chose those things very wisely. Because while it’s unrealistic to think that you might change his mind on all of your issues and problems, you CAN often change his mind about you and about how he feels about you.

Yes, this can take some doing.  But if you can change his perceptions about you, then you can eventually also change his mind about your problems – and eventually, about your marriage.

Making Your Husband WANT To Come Back After The Separation:  This is really more important than I can possibly express.   Many wives ask for my advice on “making” or “getting” a husband to come back after the separation.  Honestly, this isn’t want you want.

Do you really want him to come back with his head hung low and filled with reluctance?  If he comes back to you this way, do you think this is going to last?  Probably not because you’re both going to know that his heart just isn’t 100% into it.  And so this brings about resentment, and worry, and doubt.

The real goal is to make him to WANT to VERY WILLINGLY come back to you.  I know that these may seem like a tall order, but I promise you that with a little planning and skill, it can be done.

First, you have to get the right attitude.  You don’t want him to think that you’re going to force him to do anything that he doesn’t want.  You want for him to know that you want him to be happy and will give him as much time as he needs for that to happen.  You aren’t going to push him and you aren’t going to come on too strongly.  Don’t use your children or other members of his family for your leverage.  Men hate feeling manipulated and they will not respect you if you stoop to such levels.

I know that it can be VERY difficult to hold back sometimes, especially when you miss him so much.  But please trust me when I say that desperation is literally a repellant for men.  They can almost smell it and many tell me that it is a total turn off.

I strongly feel that you will often have more success if you portray yourself as the confident, strong woman who knows that ultimately you will find your way back to each other.  Part of this confidence means that you create a little mystery.

You certainly don’t want to literally jump every time he calls.  But, when you do interact with him, you want to look your best.  You want to appear busy and vibrant and you want to make sure that you laugh and smile.  You want to remind him of what he loves about you and you want to present the woman that he could look forward to if he came back.

Think about it for a second.  Is he really going to want to come back to a pleading, desperate, or scared woman? He’s more likely to want to come back to a confident, yet loving woman.

Another thing that repels separated husband is trying to “work” on your marital problems too soon.  You want to make sure that you are very strongly bonded again before you even think about attempting this.  Move very slowly while you are still on shaky ground.  And make sure he’s firm on wanting to come back and end the separation before you introduce anything back into the mix.

Admittedly, you’ll eventually have to come back down to reality and work through your issues.  But the time for that can be later, after he’s interested and committed again.

I know that this is a difficult time.  I truly do.  I had to use these tactics when I was separated from my husband.  It took me a long time to learn this lessons and I made many mistakes.  But I eventually was able to regroup and save the marriage.  If it helps, you can read that very personal story on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com

Once The Chemistry Is Gone In Your Marriage, Can You Get It Back?

by: Leslie Cane: I often hear from people who are quite upset that the spark, passion, or chemistry is gone from their marriage.  Many of them want to maintain or save the marriage, but they aren’t sure if this is going to be possible.  I often hear comments like this one: “I finally have to admit that the chemistry is gone from my marriage.  It seems like there’s no longer a spark or passion between us.  It isn’t as if we’re fighting or having serious issues.  It’s just that the electricity isn’t there anymore.  When we do have sex, it’s like we’re only mechanically going through the motions.  Things are starting to happen that have never happened before – like my having dreams about an ex or me actually looking appreciatively at other men.  A year ago, this would have never been possible.   We’ve never had any issues with chemistry.   We need to get it back because we have two kids and I would never want to put them through a divorce or separation.  Besides, I truly love my husband.  I want my marriage to work, but lately, I just don’t feel any chemistry at all.  While my brain and heart seem to love him, my body does not.  What can I do about this? Once the chemistry is gone, is there any way to get it back?”

I know that some will disagree with me, but I know from my own experience (and that of many others) that you can get the chemistry back in your marriage.  It often won’t happen just because you want it to or if you either ignore it and hope for the best or push so hard that things become even more awkward.  You usually have to find that happy middle between taking action and not overreacting so much that you make things worse.  I will discuss how to do that in the following article.

Determine Which Emotional Or Other Factors Lead Up To The Loss Of Chemistry: Again, I know that I might meet some resistance when I say this, but I know it to be true.  Most of the time, what happens with our bodies and its reaction begins in our brains.  If things aren’t right with our marriage on an emotional level, then things aren’t going to be right on a physical level.  Sometimes when I explain this though,  I’m met with confusion or even doubt.  I will sometimes hear comments like: “but my husband is a wonderful person.  I love him.  It’s really not that there’s anything wrong with my marriage.  He’s kind and treats me with respect and there’s no huge or central issues.  It’s just that the chemistry is gone.”

I would argue that it often isn’t quite as simple as that.  While I agree that you can see a loss of chemistry even in good and very solid marriages, I would also say that by definition, this same loss of chemistry could most definitely be defined as an issue or problem – even if no one is at fault and even when no one has done anything wrong or hurtful to the other.

Instead, it’s often a symptom of a shift of thought process or priorities in the marriage.  One or both people begin to get comfortable.  One or both people place their focus on their children, their jobs, or other issues that need and demand their attention.  And, there is nothing wrong with this.  It’s often required of us, but not adjusting or compensating where our marriage is concerned can lead to the a loss of intimacy and a cooling off of that chemistry, especially over time.

This certainly doesn’t mean that you no longer love your spouse.  It doesn’t even mean a loss of attraction or a physical bond, although it can most certainly feel that way.  What it means is that you haven’t kept the flames fanned and so, you are naturally feeling the result of cooling off.  Many people will mistakenly think that this cooling off means that they’ve “fallen out of love with” their spouse or that they married the wrong person because the chemistry eventually faded.  None of these things have to be true.

Instead, what has happened is that you are going through a phase that many married couples go through.  Complacency disguised as necessity has damaged the emotional connection in your marriage which in turn has affected the physical aspect of it.  I’m not saying that you’re no longer emotionally connected to your spouse or that you don’t feel emotions or love toward them.  You can feel all of these things and yet still lack chemistry because of complacency or neglect.  So, can this be fixed?  And if so, how?

How To Get The Chemistry Back In Your Marriage: As I’ve alluded to, I know that it’s possible to do this, but I also have to disclose that it usually takes a good deal of effort and a good deal of time.  Many couples try to rush the process by trying to force it.  And when this doesn’t work, they take that as a sign that the chemistry is gone for good and sometimes they turn their attention on how to escape the marriage instead of how to fix it.  This is definitely not what you usually want.

Before you make any attempts to address the physical aspects of your marriage that make up the chemistry, address the emotional aspects first, as well as the time that you are putting into it.  So many couples will try to spice things up in the bedroom or force a long trip together without first setting it up so that they are just spending more low pressure time together.   This can add a lot of awkwardness to an already difficult situation.  You often have much better results if you ease your way by first trying to improve your emotional connection.

This is as simple as spending more uninterrupted, low pressure time together really talking and listening to one another and connecting without worrying about chemistry or physical interactions in the beginning.  Just focus on talking, listening, laughing,  and interacting in the way that you used to.  Hold hands.  Casually touch.  But don’t do anything that feels fake or forced.

Once you feel that you are emotionally connected again, then you can focus on the physical aspects of your relationship.  It’s true that you get better at something the more time you spend on it.  So, if you want the physical aspect of your relationship to be better, then you have to spend more time on it.  I’m not asking you to do anything that makes you uncomfortable or that feels in genuine.  You don’t have to swing from the chandeliers or force yourself to engage in something that feels foreign.  But, I am suggesting that you take what is already working and build upon that.

Couples often find that if they just spend more time being physical with one another in a very genuine and non forced way (since they’ve been focusing on emotions as well) this alone will provide a good deal of relief in the chemistry department.  So that over time, a lack of chemistry will no longer be an issue for you.

A lack of chemistry as one thing that my husband cited when he told me he wanted a separation.  I didn’t feel that anything was wrong in that department, but I eventually learned that both people need to feel chemistry in order for the marriage to be satisfying to both.  At first, I tried to force this, but it actually made things worse.  Eventually, I learned that virtuously every aspect of your marriage can affect how you feel physically.   And this was the beginning of my turning things around.  Chemistry is no longer a problem for us and our marriage is back on solid ground.  If it helps, you can read more about that process on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com