What To Do If You Feel Stuck In An Unhappy Marriage With Kids (2023)

You feel stuck in an unhappy marriage with kids. What do you do? If you stay, the future looks personally bleak. And what are you modeling for the kids? If you leave the unhappy marriage, your kids suffer. Or would they be better off without the bad modeling? It’s confusing and complicated, there’s no doubt about it.

It is critical to take your time and do your research before deciding if you should stay or go. The consequences of the decision are far-reaching for you and your children. You must be clear-eyed, level-headed, and do your best to keep your emotions out of decision-making.

Know what the research says about the effects of divorce on you and your kids. That way, if you decide to divorce, you’ll know how best to lessen these effects.

If you decide to stay in an unhappy marriage with your kids, the research will help you be clear why you are doing so. And research also can guide you to make the best of your marriage for yourself and your children.

Helpful Guides For Your Decision About Your Unhappy Marriage with Kids

Additionally books like the following can help you with this important decision:

Before getting into the research on divorce’s effect on yourself and kids, here’s an important caveat. If you are in an unhappy marriage with kids and are experiencing domestic violence, it is doing great harm to your children. Find a local domestic violence support service to guide you on (ideally) how to get out of the relationship or, at a minimum, on how to protect your children.

Related Reading:

The Effect of Divorce on Families

Judith Wallerstein, Phd, created a landmark 25-year study on the effects of divorce on families, particularly children. Beginning in the 1970s she followed 131 children whose parents had divorced. She checked in with them every 5 years and reported these longitudinal observations in a book, The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce.

At the time of initiating the study (when Wallerstein anticipated only a 1-year study), she assumed the findings would validate the common wisdom at the time. That is, that divorce was a short-term crisis that families and children weathered well. At the 1-year mark, the data shocked Wallerstein. Every member of the divorcing families was doing poorly on every measure of well-being. Consequently, they extended the study’s end-date 5 years.

Even at the 5-year mark and again at the 10 and 15-year marks as the study further extended, the data were painted a dismaying picture. While most of the parents experienced noticeable emotional healing in the early years, the children did not. At 5 years, over a third of the children were even worse emotionally than they had been at the beginning of the divorce. Just because you may become happier after divorce does not mean your children will.

She also noted that just because divorce is commonplace doesn’t make it less devastating for those involved. Her findings revealed that all children suffer from divorce, no matter how many of their friends have gone through it. Despite societal stigma of divorce reducing enormously, the pain each child feels is not assuaged. It is happening to them.

Wallerstein noted that divorce is not a singular event in children’s or adults’ experience. It is a continuum experience that begins in the unhappy marriage and extends through the separation, the divorce, and any remarriages and second divorces.

The Effect on the Adults

The cumulative data on the adults over the years of the study revealed the wrenching nature of divorce in the parents’ lives:

(Video) Staying in your marriage "for the kids"? Watch this

  • Tremendous stress in single parenting.
  • Persistent anger at the former spouse and continuing emotional pain, despite technically moving on.
  • Less likely occurrence of a happy second marriage – or marriage at all for women over 40.
  • Significant, persistent financial insecurity for the majority of females.
  • Increased loneliness – for virtually all females despite social support – and for all un-remarried males.
  • Increased sense of loss, particularly in females.
  • Worsened physical health for half of the women who did not remarry.
  • Emotional distancing of fathers from children in a significant percentage of families (with devastating effects on the children).

Related Reading: What to Do When You Can’t Leave an Unhappy Marriage

The Effect on the Children

The data results on the children in divorce disturbed Wallerstein, particularly given how persistent the effects remained over the years. If you’re in an unhappy marriage with kids and considering divorce, the following may be difficult to read. Again, do your best to be clear-eyed and level-headed. Wallerstein found:

  • Children were more devastated by divorce than adults. Children were especially affected because divorce occurred during their formative years. What they saw and experienced became a part of their inner world, their view of themselves, and their view of society – the foundation of their lives as adults. Simply put, for children divorce is life-transforming.
  • For all children, the loss of the intact family structure stripped away the felt sense of safety and protection provided by the family structure – whatever its faults.
  • The loss of the family structure also collapsed the scaffolding upon which the child’s psychological, physical, and emotional growth was mounted. This interrupted the child’s growth process.
  • Virtually all children of all ages felt rejected in the divorce because they interpreted the parent leaving the spouse as also leaving themselves.
  • Almost all children in the study were angry at their parents and remained so for years. Wallerstein theorized this was because the parents had violated the unspoken and unwritten rule that parents sacrifice for their children, not the other way around.
  • The children in the study felt intense loneliness. Shockingly, only 10 percent of the children indicated an adult spoke to them sympathetically as the divorce unfolded.
  • Children in the study experienced a tremendous sense of disloyalty. If they believed they had to take one parent’s side (usually to protect that parent psychologically), they felt disloyal to the other parent. Even if they did not take sides, they still felt isolated and disloyal to both parents.
  • A significant percentage of children felt guilt and even fault for the divorce. They consequently believed it was their duty to mend the marriage. Virtually all children held reunification fantasies for years.
  • Unlike parents, children did not perceive divorce as a “second chance.” Rather, it was the loss of their childhood (as they had known it) forever.
  • Children in the study experienced low self-esteem in adolescence at greater rates than in the general population. This was especially true if fathers had become emotionally distanced from the child.
  • Adolescence was a period of grave risk for children in the study. Those who entered adolescence in the immediate wake of their parents’ divorce had a particularly hard time given the loss of family structure when they needed it most. An alarming number of teenagers felt abandoned, physically and emotionally.

Longer Term Effects

  • Even 10 and 15 years into the study, most of the children continued to feel strong emotions: a deep sense of loss, feeling less protected, feeling less cared for, etc. Most continued to have significant painful memories of the divorce. And the loss of the intact family was not the only loss, but one of a series of losses as people came and went in their parents’ lives.
  • The study participants showed significantly lower college achievement than might have been predicted from the socio-economic backgrounds in which they grew up. This was due, in part, to nearly two-thirds of fathers in the study offering no college tuition assistance whatsoever. The expense of divorce often depleted what would have been college savings for both parents.
  • Almost half of the children in the study entered adulthood as worried, under-achieving, overly self-deprecating, and sometimes angry. Additionally they showed a lifelong vulnerability to the experience of loss.
  • Upon entering adulthood and beginning to make adult decisions regarding love and intimacy, all study participants had significant fears of rejection and betrayal. Most felt the lack of a template for loving, enduring, and moral relationships. Anxiety carried over from divorced family relationships threatened to obstruct the young people’s ability to create new, enduring families of their own.
  • A sleeper effect that showed up in their 20s seemed to primarily affect female children. While in the years immediately after the divorce the girls appeared so much better adjusted socially, academically, and emotionally, this apparent adjustment fell apart for a significant percentage in early adulthood. Many suffered serious psychological problems.
  • And in one of the few good news results, many children of divorce had become stronger for their struggles. This was particularly true in areas of self-responsibility, morality, values, economic independence, hard work, and having a reverence for good family life. Divorce was not universally detrimental to all children, but these positive effects often weren’t displayed until well into adulthood.

Related Reading: Why Does Childhood Trauma Affect Adulthood?

When You Should Leave

Wallerstein’s study indicated two situations where children did better after divorce. First, when there is chronic high expressed conflict or violence or abuse in the marriage. The second was when there was an ongoing presence of active addiction in the family. Divorce in these situations actually benefited the children. Other studies also have also demonstrated that divorce is better for children in cases of domestic violence.

The study has criticisms. It used all middle-class, well-educated, therapy pre-selected subjects rather than diverse subjects. The research used no control group. And while many divorce researchers since this study have found lasting effects of divorce to be of the same type, the effects found were less intense. Feminists have been particularly critical of the study, saying that it disempowers women because it encourages them to remain in unhappy marriages.

Wallerstein vehemently denied this latter criticism, saying she was not advocating a position of no divorce. She noted that her purpose in disseminating the results of the study was to provide important information. That is, she wanted divorcing parents and policy makers to be aware of children’s experience during and after divorce so that parents and society can better support them.

The study remains one of the few longitudinal studies on the effects of divorce, and so remains very influential.

How to Best Support Your Children in Divorce

Wallerstein advised that if you decide to leave your unhappy marriage with kids, prepare the children. Give then an honest appraisal of how the decision will disrupt the parents’ schedule and time with the children. Honestly describe the impact that divorce may have on their school experience, play time, shopping, and possibly their friendships.

Don’t pretend that leaving an unhappy marriage is no big deal to the kids. If you lie to them, you will undermine their trust in you. Worse, you will lose the chance to stay included in their lives when they grow up knowing you were not reliable.

Other important supports for your children include making it clear to them that the divorce is not because of anything they did or didn’t do. Rather the divorce is the result of the parents’ actions as adults. If the decision is the last resort after unsuccessful attempts to repair the marriage let the children know that. Acknowledge to your children your sorrow over the effect of your decision on them.

Also make it clear that just because the adults are divorcing does not mean you are divorcing the children. Then work to make this last part so. Remain an active presence in your children’s lives, even if they attempt to push you away in their anger. Acknowledge their right to be angry at how the divorce totally changes their world as they knew it to be. Acknowledge the children’s sorrow and all their emotions – and continue to acknowledge their emotions.

Keep repeating these fundamental messages that the divorce was not their fault and that you are not divorcing them. Because of how the brain develops in children, especially under 12, they will likely be resistant to believing the fault for the divorce does not lie with them. Also, continue to talk about the divorce here and there over the years and demonstrate your willingness to hear their feelings as they evolve.

Do your best to keep things as consistent and predictable as possible for the children. The children residing in the same house they’ve lived in accomplishes much of this goal. However, this housing desire must balance with the real economic realities of that choice. Talk with a tax professional Do not trade short term consistency for long-term chaos. Ideally keep the children in the same schools and do your best to keep their extra-curricular schedule the same if at all possible.

Wallerstein noted the importance for children of keeping expressed conflict with your ex low both during and after the divorce. Support the relationship of the children with your ex. Be open to the children communicating with the other parent even on “your” time with them. Work with your ex to have consistency in parenting, especially for parenting adolescents.

(Video) When You're Stuck In An Unhappy Marriage | Paul Friedman

An excellent resource with much more detail on these and other considerations for supporting your children through divorce is Robert Emery’s The Truth About Children and Divorce.

Options That Can Help You in Divorce

Mediation

If you’re in an unhappy marriage with kids, keep the divorce process as low conflict as possible for your kids (and yourself) by considering mediation to accomplish your divorce. Mediation is an alternative way of divorcing that allows you and your spouse to design your own settlement and parenting plan. It allows you to take into consideration the unique circumstances of your family. It costs less and is less divisive than divorce by court litigation due to the court’s foundation as an adversarial system. Not every marriage should be dissolved through mediation, particularly those affected by addiction or domestic violence, so consult with a mediator to determine if your marriage is a fit for mediation.

Technology

There are a variety of co-parenting apps that assist with communication and scheduling. These apps can be a godsend for divorcing spouses who need distance from each other, yet still co-parent smoothly. Utilizing technology like this can help create the consistency your children need to weather this difficult time.

Therapy

Divorce ranks second only to death of a spouse in the well-recognized Holmes-Rahe Stress Inventory of life stressors. Consequently it’s normal and healthy to feel the need for support during this tumultuous time. Consider therapy for yourself to help keep you on an even keel. If your children are displaying signs of distress during or after your divorce, consider therapy for them, as well.

Self-Care

In order for you to weather this significant stress, self-care is a must. If you don’t have a self-care regime, take a look at the self-care suggestions in this article on grief and in this article on depression and anxiety for ideas.

If You Choose to Stay in Your Unhappy Marriage with Kids

Many people choose to stay in their marriage. There’s even some evidence that doing so yields more happiness than divorce in the long term. Choosing to stay can be out of desire to keep the family intact and prevent emotional damage to children. Or it can be a financial decision to remain in the marriage. Or any number of other reasons. The point is that the choice to stay is as personal and as individually valid as is the choice to divorce.

If you decide to stay in your unhappy marriage with kids, you have to figure out a new way of being in relationship that is at a minimum tolerable for yourself and not damaging for the children. While this will take work, it’s absolutely necessary for your mental health and the well-being of the children to find a low-conflict “new normal.” No one can thrive in an atmosphere of ongoing conflict and high emotion.

This new way of being tends to fall into one (or both) of two categories: (1) reshaping the marriage itself and (2) focusing on personal change.

Reshaping Your Marriage if You Stay

If you’re in an unhappy marriage with kids and you’re contemplating divorce, you’ve probably already gone to couples counseling. But if you haven’t and your partner is open to the idea, marriage counseling can be a helpful intervention to bring about change. It’s important, though, to work with a counselor who has specific training in working with couples successfully. Research-backed approaches that are associated with successful outcomes include the Gottman Method and Emotionally Focused Therapy for Couples among others.

But what if couples therapy failed? Or your partner is unwilling to join you in marriage counseling? There are other methods to reshape the marriage with your partner. Therapist Susan Pease Gadoua and journalist Vicki Larson lay out a number of ways to do this in their book The New “I Do.”They discuss redefining your marriage by consciously creating the kind of marriage that suits you, your partner, and your circumstances.

So instead of continuing to fail at the “one-size-fits-all” marriage, Gadoua and Larson suggest other ways to define your marriage and your role in marriage:

  • Companionship marriage
  • Parenting marriage
  • LAT (living alone together) marriage
  • Covenant marriage
  • Safety marriage
  • Open marriage.

All of these take open and direct communication with your partner. But redefining the marriage may be better for both of you. It brings expectations more in line with reality, which reduces frustration and anger.

(Video) Are you stuck in an unhappy marriage?

Related Reading: How to Fix an Unhappy Marriage – Solutions to the 8 Telltale Signs of Trouble

Focusing on Your Personal Change

But what if you’ve made the decision to stay in the unhappy marriage with kids and your partner is unwilling to do anything? There is still hope, and this is why. Marriages are systems and, like all systems, they must respond to change from any one part of the system in order to regain balance. Think of your marriage like a kinetic art mobile – move one part of the mobile and the other parts move to regain a balance in the system.

So by persistently focusing on changing yourself, not only do you grow personally, your marriage has a high probability of shifting. So how to start?

First, and perhaps most important, let go of any expectation of reciprocity. Decide that you are taking actions for your own personal growth – period. If the marriage benefits, that’s gravy.

Second, find something to believe in more important than yourself and your marriage to support and guide your change. Mark O’Connell in his book The Marriage Benefitnotes that “When we believe in something more important than ourselves we see ourselves in scale, we open ourselves to learning from a world that has much to teach us, and we grow into our less self-centered, therefore better, selves.” Whether that something is God, wanting to create a good life for your kids, being the bigger person, or something else, it’s important to have something more important than you and your marriage. That something to believe in will be your north star through your change process.

Third, pick out something about yourself you want to change. It might be a habit to let go of, an attitude to change, a healthy routine to develop, or loving action to take. Some ideas: quitting smoking, developing a true attitude of gratitude, committing to walking every day, or consistently thanking your partner every time he or she does something even remotely helpful. These are just ideas – you will have more. Just pick one and start. Again, your focus is on bettering yourself as a person. If the marriage shifts as a result, that is a pleasant perk, not the main event.

Fourth, once your chosen action above becomes routine, choose another action and develop it until it also becomes a part of you.

Fifth, rinse and repeat. Continue to take new actions, over and over.

As you change yourself, not only do you personally benefit, you also cause the system to shift. One the system reaches the tipping point, your partner must respond to that shift in order to re-balance the marriage system. Notably you cannot control how your partner will respond, but there will be a response. The good news is those responses are generally positive ones.

Support for Your Journey if You Decide to Stay

Deciding to stay in your unhappy marriage with kids and finding a new, happier normal is not easy. You deserve support.

Surround yourself with supportive friends; if you have friends who are not a support to you, ask yourself if you really need them at this time.

Consider group support, whether group therapy, a mutual help support group like Codependents Anonymous, or a group you’re already in – perhaps in the community, like a church, temple, or mosque. Groups can protect you from isolating yourself and be the source of encouragement, new learning, and sometimes even new friends.

This also may be a time to invest in individual counseling to help support you along the way as you shift to a new normal.

(Video) I Stayed Married But I'm Miserable

If you would like to learn more about navigating whether to leave or stay in your unhappy marriage with kids, or guidance in reaching the new normal, contact us in our Chicago area offices in west suburban Glen Ellyn and in the Jefferson Park neighborhood of Chicago.

Rhonda Kelloway, LCSW, SEP

Rhonda Kelloway is a co-owner and principal therapist at Life Care Wellness, a group psychotherapy practice in Glen Ellyn and Chicago (Jefferson Park neighborhood), Illinois. She is a trauma specialist utilizing a Somatic Experiencing framework to utilize the body’s wisdom in healing. She also uses EMDR and a variety of traditional psychotherapy approaches in her work. In addition to being a psychotherapist, she is a trained divorce and family mediator.

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(Video) Staying in Your Toxic Marriage For The Kids

FAQs

How do you get out of a marriage you feel trapped in? ›

Feeling Trapped in a Relationship? Here Are 5 Steps to Take
  1. Reflect on Yourself. First, do some self-reflection. ...
  2. Reflect on the Relationship. ...
  3. Rediscover Your Confidence. ...
  4. Figure Out Your Next Move. ...
  5. Make an Exit Plan.
29 Jun 2021

Is it better to leave or stay unhappily married? ›

A 2002 study found that two-thirds of unhappy adults who stayed together were happy five years later. They also found that those who divorced were no happier, on average, than those who stayed together. In other words, most people who are unhappily married—or cohabiting—end up happy if they stick at it.

Why do people stay married if they are unhappy? ›

2. Fear. The threat of physical violence, further emotional abuse, harming your children by depriving them of a nuclear family, and concern about how friends and family will perceive them are commonly-cited reasons why people may choose to stay in an unhappy marriage.

Should I stay in an unhappy relationship for my child? ›

There's evidence suggesting staying together for a child may not be helpful when the relationships are strained, volatile, or violent; and there's evidence that staying together is better than splitting even if tension remains.

How do you leave when you have kids? ›

How to Leave a Marriage with Children
  1. Discuss the main points with the kids together.
  2. Negotiate out of court when possible.
  3. Be open with your children.
  4. Create separate positive environments.
  5. Forgive each other.
23 Apr 2021

What is Walkaway Wife Syndrome? ›

The walkaway wife syndrome describes unhappy wives who suddenly leave their husbands. It happens when a clueless husband neglects the needs and requests of his wife. No matter how impossible it looks, you can still save your marriage. All your wife needs are your attention and commitment to the relationship.

When to call it quits in a marriage? ›

One of the most prominent signs of when to call it quits in a marriage is unwillingness to communicate. No matter how hard you try to engage your partner, it doesn't seem to work. You try the nice voice and the sweet thoughts. You try the yelling and the threatening.

How do you know when your marriage is really over? ›

Here are seven signs from experts that a Carmel family law attorney believes mean a marriage might be over.
  1. Lack of Sexual Intimacy. ...
  2. Frequently Feeling Angry with Your Spouse. ...
  3. Dreading Spending Alone-Time Together. ...
  4. Lack of Respect. ...
  5. Lack of Trust. ...
  6. Disliking Your Spouse. ...
  7. Visions of the Future Do Not Include Your Spouse.
7 Dec 2019

What is miserable husband syndrome? ›

Miserable husband syndrome is when a man experiences hypersensitivity, anxiety, frustration, and anger due to stress, loss of identity, hormonal fluctuations, etc. These factors make the man exhibit different negative patterns that can affect his marriage or relationship with other people.

What are signs you should get a divorce? ›

Here are nine key signs that it may be time to get some relationship help:
  • You are not happy. ...
  • Most of your interactions are not positive. ...
  • You find reasons to avoid your partner. ...
  • Your friends or family urge you to end the relationship. ...
  • Your instincts are telling you to get out. ...
  • You live like roommates. ...
  • Everything is hard.
21 Sept 2016

How many people stay in unhappy marriages? ›

One poll finds that about six in ten of us are unhappily coupled, four out of ten say they have considered leaving their partner and one in ten don't even trust their partner anymore.

Are people happier after divorce? ›

While some may be happier after a divorce, research indicates most adults that divorce have lower levels of happiness and more psychological distress compared to married individuals. Divorce can bring up new conflicts between couples that cause more tension than when they were married.

How do you tell if a man is unhappy in his marriage? ›

Here are some signs a guy is unhappy in his relationship:
  1. He spends excessive time on his devices even when he's with his partner. ...
  2. He does not show affection anymore. ...
  3. He doesn't like to spend much time with his partner. ...
  4. He feels sad and depressed with his partner. ...
  5. He prioritizes other people before his partner.
5 Jul 2022

How does a loveless marriage affect kids? ›

Constant fighting and stress can cause your children to develop problems like chronic depression or behavioral issues. Often, children whose parents are in unhappy marriages tend to act out or misbehave as a way of expressing their feelings.

Should I stay in a loveless marriage for the kids? ›

The truth is, there's no reason to believe that staying together at any cost is better for children than divorcing. In fact, when parents who are unhappy together and engage in unhealthy relationship habits stay together “for the kids” it can often do more harm than good.

How can I get a divorce without hurting my child? ›

How To Do Divorce Without Wrecking Your Children
  1. Leave them out of it. Well, mostly. ...
  2. Tell them it's not their fault. ...
  3. Get therapy. ...
  4. Do not turn your child into your confidant. ...
  5. Maintain a relationship with your ex. ...
  6. Maintain a relationship with your ex, Part 2.
29 Sept 2015

How do you make no contact when you have kids? ›

No Contact Rule When You Have A Child Together? Here Is How To Go ...

What is emotional neglect marriage? ›

In a relationship or marriage emotional neglect is when a partner consistently fails to notice, attend to, and respond in a timely manner to a partner or spouse's feelings. In both instances, it has far-reaching negative consequences for the relationship.

What is emotional abandonment in marriage? ›

What we're talking about here is emotional abandonment. Instead of physically leaving the relationship, your spouse simply checks out emotionally. They stop investing in the marriage, leaving you feeling disconnected and unwanted.

Why do I feel so lonely in my marriage? ›

Loneliness in a marriage can be caused by a number of different things. Family, work, and stress often play a role, but internal factors such as your own unrealistic expectations and fear of vulnerability can also make it hard to connect with your spouse.

What are three red flags in a relationship? ›

13 red flags in a relationship to look out for
  • Overly controlling behavior. Overly controlling behavior is a common red flag. ...
  • Lack of trust. ...
  • Feeling low self-esteem. ...
  • Physical, emotional, or mental abuse. ...
  • Substance abuse. ...
  • Narcissism. ...
  • Anger management issues. ...
  • Codependency.
1 Feb 2022

How do you know your marriage is not worth saving? ›

"A marriage may not be worth saving if your partner refuses to work on anything or take responsibility for creating a joint life," Sherman says. "If they call all the shots and none of your needs are ever heeded, you may decide that the only way to create a healthy relationship is by yourself or with someone new."

What is stonewalling in a relationship? ›

What does it mean to stonewall someone? In simple terms, stonewalling is when someone completely shuts down in a conversation or refuses to interact with another person.

What things destroy a marriage? ›

Four Habits That Destroy Marriages
  • Lack of Honesty. Often when we think of honesty, notably honesty in marital relationships, we think of a very tangible “where were you last night” kind of honesty. ...
  • Lack of Intimacy. ...
  • Devaluing Our Spouse/Relationship. ...
  • Using Power and Control.
12 Oct 2012

What can be used against you in a divorce? ›

Spending marital money on extramarital affairs. Transferring marital funds to another person before a separation. Spending unreasonable amounts on business expenditures. Selling marital assets below the market value.

What are the signs that your husband wants to leave you? ›

Signs Your Husband Wants to Leave You
  • Sign #1 - He's busy. ...
  • Sign #2 – He's emotionally distant and disconnected. ...
  • Sign #3 – He's constantly fighting you. ...
  • Sign #4 – He's gotten quiet. ...
  • Sign #5 – He's beginning to care more about his appearance. ...
  • Sign #6 – Your sex life has become non-existent.

Why has my husband turned into a grumpy old man? ›

The stereotype of the grumpy old man could have its roots in a condition known as irritable male syndrome. It's clinically referred to as andropause, or male menopause. Like female menopause, andropause includes physical and emotional changes that also seem dependent on changes in hormone levels.

What to do when you stop loving your husband? ›

How to Revive a Relationship
  1. Take a Step Backward to Go Forward.
  2. Remember the Things You Love About Your Partner.
  3. Maintain and Support You and Your Partner's Interests.
  4. Build a Culture of Appreciation and Respect.
  5. Strengthen Your Emotional Intelligence.
  6. Talk to Them.
  7. Date Your Partner Again.
9 Nov 2021

Is it normal to feel trapped in a marriage? ›

It is completely normal to feel trapped in a relationship, and usually, there are several reasons that lead to a person or both the people in the relationship feeling this way. However, as common as this problem is, things can get out of hand if the situation is not resolved in the right way.

When you're trapped in a marriage? ›

Talk with Your Spouse

If you're unhappy and feeling trapped in your marriage, it's very important for your spouse to be aware of this. Marriage is a partnership between two people who love and care for each other; if something is wrong, your spouse should be the first to know about it.

What is miserable husband syndrome? ›

Miserable husband syndrome is when a man experiences hypersensitivity, anxiety, frustration, and anger due to stress, loss of identity, hormonal fluctuations, etc. These factors make the man exhibit different negative patterns that can affect his marriage or relationship with other people.

What does feeling trapped in a relationship mean? ›

Many people feel that they may become trapped in a relationship. This fear can stem from trauma, attachment problems early in life, low self-esteem, and feeling smothered in a relationship. There's no “right way” to do relationships, and you may be pressuring yourself without realizing it.

When to call it quits in a marriage? ›

One of the most prominent signs of when to call it quits in a marriage is unwillingness to communicate. No matter how hard you try to engage your partner, it doesn't seem to work. You try the nice voice and the sweet thoughts. You try the yelling and the threatening.

How do know your marriage is over? ›

7 Signs Your Marriage Is Over, According to Experts
  1. Lack of Sexual Intimacy. In every marriage, sexual desire will change over time. ...
  2. Frequently Feeling Angry with Your Spouse. ...
  3. Dreading Spending Alone-Time Together. ...
  4. Lack of Respect. ...
  5. Lack of Trust. ...
  6. Disliking Your Spouse. ...
  7. Visions of the Future Do Not Include Your Spouse.
7 Dec 2019

What are the signs of a toxic marriage? ›

10 Signs You Might Be in a Toxic Marriage
  • Lack of Support. ...
  • Toxic Communication. ...
  • Envy and Jealousy. ...
  • Controlling Behavior. ...
  • Feelings of Resentment. ...
  • Disrespect for You and Your Feelings. ...
  • Negative Financial Behavior. ...
  • Constant Stress.
8 Aug 2022

What are signs you should get a divorce? ›

Here are nine key signs that it may be time to get some relationship help:
  • You are not happy. ...
  • Most of your interactions are not positive. ...
  • You find reasons to avoid your partner. ...
  • Your friends or family urge you to end the relationship. ...
  • Your instincts are telling you to get out. ...
  • You live like roommates. ...
  • Everything is hard.
21 Sept 2016

How do you tell if a man is unhappy in his marriage? ›

Here are some signs a guy is unhappy in his relationship:
  1. He spends excessive time on his devices even when he's with his partner. ...
  2. He does not show affection anymore. ...
  3. He doesn't like to spend much time with his partner. ...
  4. He feels sad and depressed with his partner. ...
  5. He prioritizes other people before his partner.
5 Jul 2022

What is Walkaway Wife Syndrome? ›

The walkaway wife syndrome describes unhappy wives who suddenly leave their husbands. It happens when a clueless husband neglects the needs and requests of his wife. No matter how impossible it looks, you can still save your marriage. All your wife needs are your attention and commitment to the relationship.

Why do I get irritated and angry so easily? ›

Many factors can cause or contribute to irritability, including life stress, a lack of sleep, low blood sugar levels, and hormonal changes. Extreme irritability, or feeling irritable for an extended period, can sometimes indicate an underlying condition, such as an infection or diabetes.

What are three red flags in a relationship? ›

13 red flags in a relationship to look out for
  • Overly controlling behavior. Overly controlling behavior is a common red flag. ...
  • Lack of trust. ...
  • Feeling low self-esteem. ...
  • Physical, emotional, or mental abuse. ...
  • Substance abuse. ...
  • Narcissism. ...
  • Anger management issues. ...
  • Codependency.
1 Feb 2022

What are three signs of an unhealthy relationship? ›

Recognizing the signs of unhealthy relationships
  • Control. One person makes all the decisions and tells the other what to do, what to wear, or who to spend time with. ...
  • Dependence. ...
  • Digital monitoring or “clocking”. ...
  • Dishonesty. ...
  • Disrespect. ...
  • Hostility. ...
  • Harassment. ...
  • Intimidation.

Can you fix an unhappy relationship? ›

If you are unhappy in your relationship, you need to identify the issues that are bothering you, discuss them with your partner, and work together to find solutions. If you feel like you need help, you can seek support from loved ones, or start going to a therapist or couples counselor.

Videos

1. Are You Staying in a Dead Marriage For the Kids
(Jayson Gaddis)
2. What To Do When You Are Unhappy In Your Marriage
(Principle Based Living)
3. Staying Together For The Kids Pros And Cons | Paul Friedman
(The Marriage Foundation)
4. Why You're Still Stuck In An Unhappy Marriage
(Goodguys2Greatmen)
5. I FEEL STUCK IN LIFE, WHAT SHOULD I DO? THIS MIND HACK GETS YOU UNSTUCK
(Lisa A. Romano Breakthrough Life Coach Inc.)
6. Should You Stay In An Unhappy Marriage Because Of Your Child?
(Merja Sumiloff)
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