Marriage Problems? You’ve Lost that Loving Feeling. Here’s How to fix it.

So many of the marriage problems I see are because one spouse just doesn’t “FEEL” in love anymore.

So you think you’ve lost that loving feeling?

I don’t mean to be disrespectful…but so what?

This won’t be my most popular post, and I am expecting some backlash but I can’t hold this in any longer.  

So many of the marriage problems I see are because one spouse just doesn’t “FEEL” in love anymore.

What can you do when you don’t feel love for your spouse?

Trust me on this folks–it’s going to happen.  

And it can get scary when those feelings are gone for more than a few days or weeks. Sometimes they can be gone for a really long time.  Maybe even years.  

Then we start to question whether this person we are with is the “right” person.  

We love them but we aren’t in love with them.  Click here to read more on finding the right person.  

Well guess what?  

You didn’t agree to stay married to your spouse until you didn’t feel love anymore.  

You made promises.  

You made commitments.  

You may even have brought children into the equation.  

What about them and your commitment as a family?

Do you realize it is much harder to end a business partnership than it is to dissolve a marriage? Isn’t that absurd?

Here are some reasons I often hear for ending a marriage:

You don’t want to stay married just for the kids.

I often hear this as the excuse people give when they want to leave their marriage.  I get it. You love your kids but staying in an unhappy marriage for the kids’ sake?  No way!  

The next rationale I usually hear is how seeing the parents unhappy together is way worse than having their family split apart.  

Well here is the thing: there is another option.  Fight for a better marriage…for the kids!  

Nothing is healthier for your kids than a healthy marriage.  

Don’t choose between two damaging choices when there is a healing choice available.  

You have tried counseling for your marriage problems, and it didn’t work.

This is hard.  Counseling is draining emotionally and financially.  But if you are physically sick, you keep going to doctors and trying different medicines until you are well.  Why wouldn’t you fight as hard to get the most important relationship of your life well?  

If counseling didn’t work, find another counselor.  

If things didn’t get better because your spouse refuses to change, that’s another matter entirely.  

But honestly, I rarely see this happen.  I usually see one very motivated person who is willing to do anything and one who wants out because they don’t feel it anymore.

You aren’t sure you really ever loved your spouse, so there isn’t anything to rebuild.

Here is another “so what” issue.  Ever heard the phrase “love the one you’re with?”  Or how about “Dance with the one who brought you.”  

Ok, I’ll stop with the country music lyrics.  But you get the point.  

There is all kinds of research that also shows that feeling unhappy in a relationship for a long period of time causes you to rewrite history.  

The fact that you truly cannot imagine ever really loving your spouse becomes real in your own mind.  The mind has amazing capabilities to create narratives that have very little to do with reality.  

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You’ve been telling your spouse how unhappy you have been for years, and nothing has changed.

Well, here is a fascinating phenomenon:  You tell your spouse you are unhappy, and nothing changes. And then you tell them you want a divorce and BAM!  They are suddenly very eager to do whatever it takes to fix marriage problems.  

And then you get mad because it took you threatening to leave before they changed.  You feel you shouldn’t have had to get to that point.

You feel if your spouse loved you, they would want to fix your unhappiness.  

In a perfect world maybe.  But you aren’t living in a perfect world, and most people need the threat of something unpleasant to really change themselves.  

Here’s where you went wrong: you put up with bad behavior or emotional distance for so long without any consequences, because you were afraid you might have to follow through.  

It took years of misery before you weren’t so afraid any more.  Don’t be mad at your spouse for holding to a toxic pattern when you have enabled him or her.  You needed motivation before you changed how you showed up in your marriage, and your spouse needed the same kick in the pants.  

You allowed it to take years because you stayed.  

I have been teaching clients for years that love is more than a feeling.  

It is a commitment to act lovingly even when the feelings aren’t there.  

It boggles my mind that we think it is perfectly normal to divorce when we don’t feel in love, but we are expected to do other things whether we feel like it or not.

How many days do you feel like getting up when the alarm goes off?  

How often do you feel like going to work?  

What if you changed jobs every time you realized you didn’t like going to work?  

How often do you feel like forgiving someone who wronged you, yet you do it anyway because you know it is the healthiest option?  

What about your kids?  Do you feel “in love” with them every day?  

I have teenagers.  

I can’t wake up one morning and divorce my kids because I’m not feeling passionate about being their mom.  

Your spouse is your FAMILY.  

You don’t divorce your family unless there is abuse.  

Why do marriages get an easier out?  

Marriages are the very foundation of families.  If you think this makes marriage sound like hard work and love isn’t supposed to be hard, click here.

The most damaging thing you can do is look outside the marriage for all the things you aren’t getting from your spouse.  

You meet someone who excites you and causes your heart to pound just by getting their texts.  

This person makes you feel alive while being around your spouse drains you.  

The more emotionally and/or physically involved you get with this new person, the less love you feel for your spouse.  

In fact, you feel angry because your spouse isn’t making you happy.  

Your spouse isn’t affectionate enough, or generous enough, or (fill in the blank) enough.  

That anger helps you justify what you are doing.   

But let me give you a reality check.  

There is nothing your spouse is or isn’t doing that justifies having an affair.  

NOTHING.  

Affairs are fantasies for people who are afraid to grow up.

Not everyone who loses the loving feeling will have an affair.  

Many just check out of the marriage.  Don’t do it.  

Don’t give in to feelings of hurt and hopelessness.  

Commit to doing whatever it takes to have a vital, connected, loving marriage.

Here is the thing about feelings: they come and they go.  They change.  They intensify and then wane.  

Love is so much more than a feeling.

But it often does include feelings of warmth, compassion, lust and longing–those feelings aren’t mystical.  They can be created and re-created by strengthening the bond between you.  

We know how to recreate the feelings most people associate with love.

At The Marriage Place, we can help you feel connected again.  We can show you how to find those feelings that are gone.  Even if your spouse won’t come with you.  Make an appointment HERE.  

You can start creating the relationship you want today.

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9 thoughts on “Marriage Problems? You’ve Lost that Loving Feeling. Here’s How to fix it.

  1. This is exactly how I feel about the relationship. But, how do I get my spouse to see it this way when he is so adimant that he is done and wants out (after 20 years together, and 3 kids)?

    1. Crystal, this is a tough road but I’ve seen spouses change their mind time and time again. Our Re-engage Toolkit gives you 20 Tools on how to do this And even better (and more customized to you), would be working with one of our coaches who specialize in marriage rescue situations like this. It won’t be an easy road but it’ll be worth it. You’ll either save your marriage or you’ll know you’ve done everything you could which will save you regrets. I wish strength for you as you navigate this road. Warmly, Kim

  2. I feel lost and have no motivation to be a wife or a mom. My husband and i argue all the time. We have struggled over the years financially. He was a soccer coach who never had time for me or our children. I would have to plan sex on his days off. At some point in our marriage, I met someone that gave me the affection I wasn’t getting from my husband. I ended the relationship with the guy after three years. I no longer wanted to be that person. I wanted to be a happily married wife with kids. So I came clean with my husband. I told him about what I had done with my intentions to work things out if he could forgive me and if not than i would understand why he would want a divorce. For two months he made my life a living hell! Only for me to find out that he had been talking with a girl from work for i don’t know how long because he won’t say. The only reason i found out about him and that girl was because of the little things he was doing that a cheater would do. It’s been 6 months now that we have been trying to work things out. He has become a controlling freak. I can’t hang out with my friends or even have a password on my phone. He questions where i am at all the time. He will call my parents phone just to make sure i am actually there. I now have no friends. No one to talk to. He tells me that he is my only friend that if i need to talk about something that i need to tell him. So I do try to make things work just so that he can have peace of mind. I try talking to him about my day and my feelings but he treats me as if he is my parent and not a friend. I don’t know what to do. I feel hopeless. I can’t even find the motivation to keep going in my kids. I can’t sleep at night. There is no trust. I lost interest in sex and he thinks I am getting it from someone else that’s why i don’t want to have sex with him. But it’s not that i just can’t mentally and
    i don’t find him attractive because of the way he treats me. But he doesn’t know that. Today i finally gave in to having sex and I gave it my all. But i felt raped and no contention was there. No Feelings behind it. I feel disgusted by him. I need help what do i do?

  3. Love in a marriage can be lost due to many reasons. People don’t end their marriages as soon as they feel they’re no longer in love. You need to discover the reason(s) before taking such a big step. Do consider talking to a counselor, as this may help you identify your feelings and the reasons for those.

    1. You are absolutely correct Iris! A counselor or coach can help identify and address the “why”. Love is a remains a choice even when the feelings of love may be lost. Thanks for your comments! Kim

  4. My husband and I have been having issues for over 2 years now and I have asked him to work on things. He had been resistant and didn’t seem to want to make any efforts. 2 days ago I found text messages between him and a girl discussing sexual acts. He swears that nothing happened past the texts, that he had no intention of meeting her and that he has never done anything like this before. We have a 3 year old and a life together. We were best friends for 10 years before getting married 6.5 years ago. I do not want to end our marriage and want to work on it but do not know how to trust him again. Now he says he will do anything and that myself and our daughter are his whole world. Our schedules do not allow for daytime counselling. Can you suggest any alternative counselling types that would work for our busy lives? I guess I really have no one I can talk to so maybe just needed to get this off my chest but appreciate any advice that you have.

    1. Sam, you can work with one of our coaches over Skype. They are very flexible in scheduling. I think this is a great option for you!

  5. You said “if things didn’t get better because your spouse refused to change, that’s a different story.” Please explain because that’s where I’m at now.

    1. If you have clearly communicated to your spouse that something he is doing or saying is harmful or hurtful and he isn’t willing to change it or discuss it, you have a decision to make. Is this a marriage you can live in? If not, tell him he can go to counseling or separate. Staying and putting up with bad behavior only allows it to continue. Sometimes you have to make a stand.