Originally Posted by walkingwounded
TAG, I actually did *exactly* what you suggested in lowering the thermostat before Christmas. He did respond, not realizing it, by coming to me more which was great. He then picked up on what I was doing. He got sulky as I wasn't doing the stuff he had gotten used to, and I explained simply by saying I felt I had been giving too much and wanted to just step back.
He was angry about that! Said I shouldn't be giving to expect things in return, that I was being petty and childish, and kept saying I obviously didn't love him *that* much if I wasn't doing x/y/z for him.
We came to the usual point where it boils over and we argue, the red cloud clears and we make up. I decided to be openly giving and we had thd arrangement whereby we would have one or two evenings focussed on each other rather than just vegging out in front of the TV.
He was pretty good then after two weeks... The same. Again. I have been giving more than before, cheerfully and unselfishly because I can see how happy it makes him to meet his needs. LNL, we have discussed love languages for both of us. I listen and observe carefully what he likes me doing and what he would like me to do and act accordingly. Funnily he follows suit and has taken the odd gesture and done it for me. I notice and am appreciative of the effort though confused why when he knows I crave quality time, he skips that and shows affection how *he* wants it.
I have approached this in all the different ways I can think of. I have asked him. I have hinted. I have arranged thkngs myself. I have thought of activities I know he would enjoy as well as things I enjoy. I have shown apprwciation in many ways when he *does* make an effort. I have laid down the bottom line and every time he apologizes, says I am right and he will make the effort. And he does... For a week.
He has pretty much said that life is so demanding and everyone wants something from him. And when it gets to the end of the day all he wants to do is kick back with a beer and the TV. He says he doesn't have much time to think about me when he's at work or any relationship stuff. OK but then he doesn't think about it much outside of work either.
His company have cut his hours so he is finishing earlier in the afternoon. So far this week, he has come in, poked his head round the door to say hi, and disappeared until dinner is ready. I quite understand he wants to make use of his extra time to go do stuff on the car, or work on things in the yard. I am aleays super careful to make sure what I want isn't overbearing or demanding. I wanted to see if he'd use the time just even one day to come and just talk whilst I'm cooking dinner or doing chores. Even snuggle up when I am sat with the kids watching TV. My parents came over yesterday and he came home, said hi and disappeared on a "short" errand that took an hour and a half and made dinner late as we were waiting on him.
It's gonna be my birthday soon and I'm in two minds as to whether to go out with him like we talked about. I've just stopped asking or arranging right now. I know he *would* come out but would use it for the next couple months if I said anything about quality time: "but honey I came out for your birthday didn't I? I do make an effort!" as a backup.
I just feel so incredibly lonely at times.
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I truly feel for you WW. My h and I were in a similar position. It is really hurtful when a quality time person is left without it, especially when you see that your spouse seems to find time for EVERYTHING else! It's too funny how the wordings are always the same...you are nagging, controlling, spoiled, needy...the list goes on when you are just trying to connect. It's so frustrating, I had even gotten to the point of accusing him of cheating because nothing else made any sense...I would always ask why did you get married if you don't want to spend time with me. We ended up going to counseling because he kept saying I didn't trust him and I would say you aren't giving me reason to trust always isolating yourself from me. After several sessions we finally were able to sit down and put us first (hint... counseling at least was an hour a week of "us" time
) Try and see if he would be willing to do counseling because it just isn't fair that he will spend 2 to3 days a week with "his friends" and not even 1 with his wife!!!
p.s. If he doesn't agree to counseling then you take a couple days a week for yourself while he stays home with the kids!!!