Skip Nav
A Closet Cosplayer Shares Her Tips on Dressing Up With What You Already Have
This Bride Decided to Swap Her Heels For Cowboy Boots on Her Wedding Day
24 Ways to Channel Snow White This Halloween

DearSugar Needs Your Help: Why Did He Wait to Tell Me This?

DearSugar and Blindsided Betsy need your help. Her husband just came clean and told her that he's unhappy in their relationship and has been for quite a while now. She doesn't understand why they didn't have this conversation before they got married and she's both devastated and angry. Do you have any advice for her?

Dear Sugar,

I have been with my husband for six and a half years (married for one), and two weeks ago, he came to me and told me that he isn't fulfilled in our relationship and hasn't been for some time now. He said that I am a wonderful, gorgeous, perfect wife/woman, but my communication skills are lacking and my conversation isn't stimulating enough for him. He doesn't know what he wants to do, but he does know that he isn't happy. Mind you he's never said anything to me about this before — never!

I feel like I've given so much to this relationship, including moving to another state and giving up the job I loved, and this is what I get in return? The fact that he's decided to tell me that he doesn't feel like we're "compatible" after we're already married upsets me to no end. We are going to counseling for the next three months, but there are no guarantees that anything will change in his mind, and quite frankly, I feel like the damage he's caused is irreversible. I love him and always thought he loved me too, so has our entire relationship been a sham? I just don't know what to think anymore and I fear that I've wasted seven years of my life only to become a divorcée. I don't know what to do now so any advice would be a huge help. — Blindsided Betsy


mydiadem mydiadem 8 years
I'm sorry to hear about your situation, and I know what you mean when you talk about irrevocable damage. My (now ex) husband did a similar thing to me, said I was too smart for him and that I deserved better so he was leaving. He went to counseling on his own while we were separated for nearly a year and worked on his secret depression issues. Its one thing to not be happy, its another to not be honest enough to bring it up ASAP in a nice way. Having the person you love, and you thought loved you too, blindside you with this hurtful revelation changes everything. Counseling is good because it helps you both move on, but it doesn't seem like this guy is worth it to try to make it work. Of course that's your call (and his, who knows if he really even wants to try) but be grateful for the experiences you had with him, and don't regret it thinking you wasted years of your life. Everything happens for a reason, and when you move on you will find a much healthier relationship because you'll have your eyes more open.
talanted08 talanted08 8 years
WoW my Dear!! I really don't know what to say! It's like most of the comments that were giving.... WE really don't know what's going on but we know that he was wrong for blaming you! To me it sounds like he may have someone else on the side they may be filling his head with idea's, fantasies and maybe a bit of her loving! You can never tell about a man now a day's but why is it that they always want to blame the lady when they know there wrong. Don't look at it like your the one that's not giving him what he needs, he may not know him self what it is he wants. If you have children this situation becomes harder than easier b/c you want your family to stay together through thick and thin! Take time out to see what it is you can do to help YOU not him! The counseling was the best option for you at this moment so hopefully that will clear the air if not all the way then enough so you can live a healthier life. God Bless you in your time of need b/c he's not worth it!
LittleDentist19 LittleDentist19 8 years
My advice to you is to resist temptation to change who you are in order to make him happy. It sounds like you are a very generous, flexible person who's willing to give a lot to make your husband happy, and that's not necessarily bad. What WOULD be bad at this juncture is, in a desperate attempt to save the relationship or make you husband see that you are compatible, if you changed something major about yourself to make a point. In fact, be wary of making any big changes right now, unless you're sure that it's to make you-and not anybody else- happier and more content with your life. I think it was very unfair of him to not tell you this until now. But bear in mind: THIS IS NOT (say it with me: NOT) YOUR FAULT! Don't look back and wonder what you could have/should have/would have done, because honestly that doesn't matter. What matters now is that you are in this situation, and you need to take care of yourself and figure out what you need to do.
Bobbee Bobbee 8 years
I feel so sorry 4 u.... As far as i'm concerned, men are just useless!!! If the therapy doesnt change anything, please just leave him and move on with your life! It's gonna hurt especially considering all u've given up for him but the fact still remains - u can't kill yourself bcos of him....
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 8 years
did he really say "our conversations arent stimulating enough"? WOW, thats some cold BS. So he is telling you now, maybe you are boring and he has just been trying to see if it would get better, maybe your the type that doesnt talk either, unless its online anonymously to strangers for advice.....give it some time.
Lyv Lyv 8 years
"You conversation isn't stimulating enough"? Holy fxck, he said you are BORING. Forget counceling. He's an inconsiderate ass, he's clearly got severe issues and just tried to project the blame on you! "Lacking communication skills". Is he fxcking kidding? I can't get over the fact he told you you bore him... He might as well have just slapped you in the face.
PinkNC PinkNC 8 years
And for goodness sakes...don’t complain and nag to your husband during the process either. Communicate with him while expressing your true feelings, good or bad, in the right way.
PinkNC PinkNC 8 years
You are already going into marriage couseling with a bad attitude. You stated.... “quite frankly, I feel like the damage he's caused is irreversible.” Well then what is the point of you going if you’re not going to help the situation? Look, I know you feel bad right now but men go through phases. Maybe this is just his first one while with you, or maybe he’s right and it is just YOU. You said.... “He said that my communication skills are lacking and my conversation isn't stimulating enough for him.” Again, if you’re not a hopeful person when a situation gets bad in your marriage, meaning you don’t try hard to think wisely about how you two can work hard together to solve a problem, for example finacial issues, then yeah, you’re conversations wouldn’t stimulate him to go forward to help any problems because you’re so negative and unhopeful about different issues between you two. And NO, you’re marriage is most likely not a sham, as you stated. This is you’re first serious issues according to you. He didn’t cheat on you or mentally abuse you. Your husband told you that you were “a gorgeous, perfect wife/woman.” Your husband did the right thing and nicely told you that he felt that you weren’t communitcating with him, so therefore he agreed or suggested marriage couseling. And *Abbigail* is right.... “Just because there as kinks right now, doesn't mean that you can't salvage a really happy and healthy marriage. Plus, most couples say that the first year of marriage is the hardest?” If you love your husband, and you stated that you do, then work with the man, don’t work against him. Try your best in each marriage counseling session with him. Try anything and everything that you have too in order to get your communication skills back up to par for the both of you.
Abbigail Abbigail 8 years
Whoa people. This is a MARRIAGE, not some casual relationship that she should chuck just because it got a little hard. We could all go down the list of what she and her husband SHOULD have done but what good would that do? Use a counselor for as long as it takes. Ask any couple that has been married for a while and most will tell you that there were years when they really had to work at their marriage. Just because there as kinks right now doesn't mean that you can't salvage a really happy and healthy marriage. Plus, don't most couples say the first year of marriage is the hardest? Don't give up!
margokhal margokhal 8 years
That's a terrible situation; sorry it happened. Still, I am sensing that there is something more going on here. It's really hard to believe that OUT OF THE BLUE he just said, "I'm not fulfilled in this relationship" - especially after you've been MARRIED. Without knowing the details, it is entirely possible that he's been giving you red flags about not being happy in the relationship long before you got married - and YOU (just *trusting* that you both were on the same page and that he loves you) didn't notice them. Maybe counseling will help now, I don't know. But I bet all of this would have come out and you could have saved yourself the trouble if you went to couples counseling BEFORE you got married.
MissJules5x MissJules5x 8 years
whil what he said was hurtful, he's being honest and trying to communicate with you. i would much rather my husband tell me hes bored and telling me why he's bored than tell me he's seeing someone else and leaving me because he's bored. take this as a step to communicate. maybe you have nothing to talk about because you are spending too much time together and have nothing to talk about. find a hobby. keep yourself busy so when you are together you have something interesting to talk about. set up date nights to try new things etc... if you stay in the same pattern of doing the same thing everyday, things are bound to get boring. you have to do things on your own that interest you so you can grow together.
joolyooly joolyooly 8 years
He has absolutely no right to insult your communication skills when he couldn't put his unhappiness into words before you tied the knot. I know it'll be hard, and there is every chance counselling could work for you two, but remember; it's never too late to go back. This marriage has only taken you one year, you can still go back to your single life and find somebody who appreciates you. And one parting thought; "conversation not stimulating him" is a petty, awful excuse for ending a marriage. He is hardly one to use communication as an insult.
karlorene karlorene 8 years
i think you deserve much, much better than this- but i would try hard with counseling and therapy and whatnot and do anything to not throw away the marriage, even if this isn't of your doing. no matter what the end result, keep your head up! You will get through this.
356UIK 356UIK 8 years
Maybe counseling will breath some life back into the relationship. Maybe he is going through a phase?
lexichloe lexichloe 8 years
While I'm all for counseling, this isn't the place. You will spend endless amounts of money and time trying to fix something that's not fixable.
lexichloe lexichloe 8 years
Maybe he felt obligated to marry you b/c you had been together so long. Maybe you and he aren't right for one another anymore...couples do outgrow one another.
frieddumpling frieddumpling 8 years
I think it's better he has the guts to tell you know instead of five years down the road and/or before any children are involved. I don't think counselling would help that much (not that I don't recommend giving it a try in terms of helping you two stay together), but I think he probably gave it a lot of thought for a long long time before getting himself to talk about this with you. I don't think people should stay in a relationship and desperately try to work something out that just isn't worth it because of how ever many years they have already spent together. That is a sunk cost. I'm sure you'll find true happiness in time, but it doesn't seem like he's the one. People who marry young often grow apart, especially after entering into the working world. So be strong and don't stay with him for the wrong reasons.
RockAndRepublic RockAndRepublic 8 years
Whatever issues he's going through, don't let him project them onto you. "Sure, i dont have the balls to speak how i feel, but that's your fault." Bring it up during counseling.
princess_eab princess_eab 8 years
God, do you really want to be married to someone like this for the rest of your life? You deserve better. I say go to counseling because I believe it's better to try, for both of your sakes, but I'd rethink being married at this point.
lemamike lemamike 8 years
Terrible situation, I am sorry. That aside, I do have to say I agree something else must be the problem. Unless you really cant communicate or hold a conversation I can't imagine this would be worthy of ending a relationship. But maybe Counseling might help get the issues out. Until then i would just try to look at yourself from the outside. When you talk to people pay attention to what you're saying. Are you able to hold a conversation, listen and answer questions? Maybe talk to a sister or best friend who can honestly tell you how you are at communicating and if there's something you are doing that makes people have trouble. If you really can't come up with something in doing those two things then maybe it's not your problem it's his. One post talked about how sometimes people aren't honest because they dont want to hurt their significant others. That makes a lot of sense; i've been there unfortunately. This might be fixable which is good but these cvonversation issues are definitely a red flag for other issues. I hope things work out but in all honesty prepare yourself for it not to. Wish you the best.
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
Obviously, Hope2be and I were basically on the same far as kicking him to the curb. I should have read her response sooner! ;)
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
If you really want to still invest in your marriage, I suggest that rather than paying good money for counseling, that you take some college courses or start reading up on current events so he can have an intelligent conversation with you. However, even though I can understand the void he has expressed (if that is the real reason) it is a little hard to swallow. One would think that after five years living together he might have come to that realization before asking you to marry him ~ so based on that fact, I think it is more likely he has another, more damaging reason, for wanting a divorce and is using the excuse that makes you look like the one who is lacking. Personally, I wouldn't give him the satisfaction of thinking he mattered enough to salvage the marriage at this point. Don't be a martyr, just get on with your life and act like you are so grateful he wants out!
hope2be hope2be 8 years
I'm really sorry OP. My first impression is, there's something else he's not telling you. It may be another female(s), or depression or addiction or whatever. The thing is, he may be chickensh1t in admitting that he fell out of love with you a long time ago, but seriously, there's SOMETHING that pushes him to let you know..NOW after 7 years, or a year of marriage. It's BS about your communication skill, he is the one with the problem, for the love of god, if he led you on for years! You either find this SOMETHING out during therapy and everything will be revealed (then you get to pick up the pieces or whatever) OR you'll find out after he's gone ahead and decided to get a divorce from you. If you have any inkling that he may have another female(s) on the side, you need to ask him because it compromises your health too beside the 'sanctity' of marriage. Honestly, knowing myself, if I were you, what's going to happen is me moving out of the house (or kick him to the curb--ok, nicely ask him to move out). Getting an annulment probably is best because he's already not telling the truth during saying your vow/whatever... It's really up to you on what you plan to do. I hope the best for you.
lickety-split lickety-split 8 years
i had a friend that this happened to. they dated all through high school and college. they got married the weekend after college graduation and with the help of their parents bought a beautiful home. the rest of us were stumbling around trying to decide what to do with our lives and they just seemed to "know". then one night after about a year of marriage he came home from work and announced that he had met someone else and was leaving her to move in with his new love. she thought he was joking and was stunned to find out that he went through with the wedding because he felt "obligated" after all the time they had spent together and because their families "expected" them to get married. if your husband has only had one foot in the relationship since the marriage began i'm not sure you can do anything about that. it's as if he tricked you because you took him at his word, and now he's saying he didn't really mean it (forever, promise, till death do us part, etc). if however, he's depressed (as someone else suggested) or having other difficulties maybe you can save your marriage. the trouble is WHAT do you believe? are you willing to chuck all the time you've spent together before getting to the bottom of when his dissatisfaction started? difficult decisions. i feel badly for you and hope it works out in the long run.
missangelique999 missangelique999 8 years
I feel like there might be some other things he's not telling you about..maybe you'll find out what those things are in therapy. The best thing you can do now is go to therapy, try to work things out, and if things don't get better-cut your losses. You don't want to spend the rest of your life in an unhappy marriage. You might be surprised to find that eventually you could be happy on your own, or with someone else.
Funny Costume Ideas For Couples
'90s Halloween Couples Costumes
Ways to Fall Back in Love With Your Partner
Signs Your Significant Other Is Head Over Heels
From Our Partners
Latest Love
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds