Dear Keith and Maura,
How can I have a better relationship with my husband? We seem to be growing apart, with the stresses of life we just don't have any quality time anymore. He loves to play video games and I feel so left out. We don't do anything together anymore. I am so unhappy and I don't know what to do. I love my husband so much, we have been together for almost 13 years and we have two beautiful daughters. Please help me if you can!
Lonely in Indiana
First of all, we want to acknowledge you for writing in and asking this question. There are many people in the same situation, and they will all benefit from you stepping forward and asking for support.
Let's face it, life is tough enough when you are single. Add another person to that and make the ultimate commitment of sharing your lives together, and you're adding a boatload of stress already. Then add in children on top of all that, and it is very difficult to maintain joy and fulfillment on a regular basis.
This may sound strange, but believe it or not, the best thing you can do right now is to start feeling better. Don't wait until your situation improves. Don't wait for your husband to change his behavior. Don't wait for your life to become less stressful. Just start feeling better.
By focusing on - and doing - things that make you feel good.
What do you like to do? Gardening...? Painting...? Reading...? Listening to inspirational music...? Going to the movies...? Getting together with other people who share your interests...?
Carve out just a little bit of time, wherever you can, to do what makes you feel good. Your husband is already doing that. He's playing video games, and that makes him feel good. Right now, if he'd rather be doing that than spending time with you, chances are it is because you are stressed out and unhappy. If he's already working hard or dealing with challenges in his life, why would he want to spend his free time with someone who is stressed out and unhappy?
So get happy!
Once you start doing things that make you feel good, he is likely to notice the difference in you, and be more interested in spending time together. And even if he doesn't, at least you will be having fun!
Keith and Maura
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