Question: Dear Luise:: We’ve been married for 11 years now with a lot of good times shared. Even before our kids (5,7)were born, I’ve felt MANY things have been a double standard in our relationship. He’ll get mad at me for things that aren’t a big deal but when I have similar expectations of him- he will not listen and says I am being unreasonable. I am tired of being treated with such a lack of respect. For new years I made a resolution that I would start demanding more respect from him and do more things for myself. I went to a concert and danced with this guy for the most of the night. I had an amazing time with him, and when he asked me for my phone number I gave it to him. We talked over the next week and we met for drinks after work one night and talked and got to know each other. He was going to another show that weekend so I made plans to meet him there. By that point, I was very attracted to him and when I went to that show, I went with a strong intention to get together with him sexually. We had an amazing night at his house after the concert- I felt a connection and respect from him that I had not felt from my husband in a very long time. I was very reluctant toleave, and he wanted me to stay too. I finally told him that I had to leave because I would be expected home by my family and I was married. He was surprised but not upset. We continued to talk and I went to his house again 2 weeks later. I have not seen this guy again because he ended up moving and his roommate doesn’t feel comfortable with the situation. I’ve been seeing a counselor to help me sort this out. I’ve asked my husband to come to counseling with me so we can work on issues in our marriage, but he is resistant. When I try to talk to him he will not engage in a conversation. I want to be treated like a person and have fun again and I don’t know if that is going to ever happen if I stay in my marriage. Is it worth it to keep trying or is it time to move on? G.
Answer: Dear G.: You are tired of being treated with such a lack of respect? Was that what triggered you acting in a disrespectful way? Often a lot of adulthood isn’t fun.
My sense is that you have already moved on. I’m not minimizing the pain and suffering that comes to all parties concerned when basic incompatibility is present and looks like it can’t be resolved. But/and counseling can only do so much and is often focused on both parties being willing to learn to have the other be the way that person is. Change often isn’t an option. Isn’t it a catch 22 when your husband refuses to consider it and you have chosen to look elsewhere? Blessings, Luise