He Won't Spend Time with Me

Also: "She's Mothering Me!" "She Says I'm Not Romantic."

Q. I think my husband is avoiding me. He spends all his time at work or with his friends. I asked him this morning if he'd like to do something with me on Sunday and he asked if he could get back to me because he didn't know what he had going on then. When he's home, he watches TV, gets on the internet, cooks, sleeps—anything but hang out with me.

A. You must be weary and feel frustrated and discouraged trying to get his attention! Healthy relationships require continuous cultivating and nourishing, but with time pressures, jobs, family, and other activities, it's easy for all of us, but especially men, to allow the tyranny of the "urgent" to crowd out what's important to the marriage.

Find a mutually good time, sit down with him, look him in the eye, and let him know how much you love him and desire a great marriage. Then both of you can share your perception of where your marriage is on a scale from 1-10 with 1 being horrible and 10 being ecstasy. Each of you can also share one thing you're willing to do and one thing you'd like your spouse to do that might take your relationship to the next level.

We don't know what's going on with your husband, and if his actions are significant. It could be simply that he's apathetic in the relationship and needs to be reminded that he really does enjoy you. You can encourage him and be with him on his terms for now. Or you two may have built some walls and he feels unsafe with you. Being a safe person to another means "accepting" him where he is, meeting him in his space.

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