My husband and I have been married for 5 years now. I no longer have any friends to hang out with or spend time with, and it is pretty depressing.
When we became engaged 6 years ago, I moved out of state to be with my husband. We are three hours away from my family/friends, and I eventually lost touch of my friends for the most part. I hardly see my family because my husband's job is pretty unreliable, and with the economy the way it is, don't get to travel much. We also have three kids which makes our lives very busy.
The crappy thing is, that my husband is not interested in having any social relationships with anyone. When we were engaged, we used to hang out with his brothers and sisters, but now we hardly ever see them. We also used to spend time with his friends, but not anymore. I try to encourage planning social outings and things with them, but even if I can get my husband to invite them to do something, the timing usually doesn't work or they say yes but we never end up doing anything with them. His brothers/sisters and friends never invite us to do anything with them. I think it's mainly due to the fact that we have three kids and they probably think we are boring.
I have made a couple of friends at work, but my husband doesn't care to hang out with them and would rather stay home. I sometimes will have drinks with them right after work, but feel too guilty to do anything more than that since he is home with the kids.
Does anyone have any suggestions of how I should handle this situation? I love my husband and my children, but I really miss going out and having fun once in a while.
Go out and have fun with him? Maybe take him out to go clubbing with you or something.. and the more fun he has with you in a social setting.. perhaps he will want to socialize too.. or maybe he just needs you and him time and you could arrange bbqs at home and invite friends if he doesn't mind that... Posted via Mobile Device
Thanks for your response. My husband and I do go on dates once in a while, but it is usually the movies/dinner because he doesn't like drinking or clubs-he is a pretty reserved guy. I will try the BBQ route, though.
Plan some kind of get-togethers with other parents of your children's friends. Usually, there is a kind of kinship, working parents with shared ideals and goals... raising families, including children in activities, hard-working dads and moms, similar issues, etc...
Seek out parents through Cub Scouts, school activities, story time at the library, etc... If nothing else, you may find people that your reserved hubby might enjoy since it's not about clubbing and partying.
Get him off the couch and tell him the truth. You want to get out some and enjoy other peoples company and you need him with you as your husband. At you home start a once a month get together with your new friends.
Simple: Make your desires (activities/socializing/fun) a priority.
I'm a couples counselor and I know that finding time for romance/social engagement/fun becomes more challenging when children, mortgages, and household responsibilities come into the equation.
The answer is to literally plan these activities. In fact, many married couples barely know each other anymore so I instruct them to plan date nights, etc.
Most relationships grow stale without outside friends/hobbies/interests. The reason is that no single person (spouse) can satisfy your every interest, hobby, etc. so we must fulfill ourselves. That way, you bring more back to your primary relationship and reinvigorate it.
My H is an introvert and very shy. He is shy around even our closest family and friends. Meeting new people? Forget about it.
We always get into fights about this. He would literally clam up anytime I took him out with a group of people, not speak to anyone, cling to me, and the way he behaved actually made people think he has having a horrible time and/or he wanted to leave. It made it awkward for me to socialize with anyone because I had a "wet blanket" with me at all times.
I am not really sure why/when this started happening...because before marriage my husband had a large circle of friends (drinking buddies) and I blended right into that circle of friends effortlessly. We have kids now and do not drink like we used to (maybe that is why H is not as social LOL) but we still remain friends with this same circle of people because they have all gotten married and had kids right around the same time we did.
The thing is, if you don't make an effort to keep a friendship going, it's going to die out. It is important to me that we continue our friendships because our families are both so small, I sometimes feel like our friends and their kids are like a psuedo-family to us.
The first thing I had to do was learn to let go of my H's attitude and seperate my wants/needs from his. He does not have the same desire to be social that I do. I am quite sure he would be content for the rest of his life if he only ever had to speak to me and our two kids and never anyone else.
I made sure that H and I are getting plenty of opportunity to go out on dates by ourselves, without friends involved. He gets resentful if the only non-child time we get is with friends and he never gets any alone time with me. We are good with our dates now that our kids are getting a little older, we go out usually once a week for a couple of hours by ourselves. Once I made sure we were getting enough couple time, I started talking to him about spending time with friends.
I know a lot of people suggest finding your own individual activities and having your own hobbies apart from your spouse. I have a "thing" that prevents me from wanting to go out on my own without my husband. I own that it's my problem. First of all, 99.999% of the time when our friends are going out, they are all couples. So showing up alone without your spouse would be strange. The other handful of times it would not be considered wierd to show up alone, I feel self conscious going out alone because my H is sitting home with the kids, AND I have had experiences where I get hit on ! I do not like being out in public without my husband at a bar for example, with people mistakenly thinking I am single.
I learned to let my husband have a bad attitude when we are out if that's what he wants to do. I don't let it ruin my good time. I am nothing but sweet and cheerful to him and in front of him, and if he chooses to sit in a corner and sulk, so be it. Once I stopped paying attention to him, constantly asking if he wanted to leave, constantly trying to cater to him to make sure he was having a good time...he stopped a lot of the sulking behavior. Probably because it wasnt getting him attention. When he chooses to be cheerful and happy, I am very grateful for that and I never leave his side and make sure to include him in all of my conversations.
I have also stopped begging him to do things with me. I pretty much tell him - I would really like to go to X, I am hoping you will choose to go with me. He always does. I generally pass on things I KNOW he wouldn't like and has no interest in, but a simple dinner with friends I think he should be able to go out and feign interest for 3-4 hours once a month. I just told him I do a lot of things with him that aren't necessarily my favorite thing to do (like spending 3 hours at the hardware store on a Saturday morning) but I shut up and do it as a labor of love for him. I expect the same from him.
And yes, you must plan them. These days with young kids and with everyone else having young kids, we usually have to plan things 3-4 weeks in advance.
the way he behaved actually made people think he has having a horrible time and/or he wanted to leave.
What makes you think he wasn't thinking exactly that? There are some people like that.
The other handful of times it would not be considered wierd to show up alone, I feel self conscious going out alone because my H is sitting home with the kids, AND I have had experiences where I get hit on ! I do not like being out in public without my husband at a bar for example, with people mistakenly thinking I am single.
A woman that knows to place some healthy walls to protect her marriage... All the betrayed guys in the infidelity section envy your hubby!
I was always a big 'friend' guy when I was single. But I moved to a different part of the state after marriage (not far, but not in the same neighborhood anymore) and year by year, the guys all became married themselves and we all live everywhere but the same area now.
For a few years, we managed to get together at least three or four times per year to take one of us out for his birthday. Then our schedules clogged up and we began combining two bdays. Sooner than later, it dwindled and dwindled.
Especially once children became part of our respective equations, we haven't seen each other in years and guys aren't into the phone thing, so we havent even spoken for some time. No hard feelings, just hard schedules and hard reality. Kinda sucks.