Ask E. Jean - Tormented? Driven Witless? Whipsawed by confusion?

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I got married a year ago. Right before we got married we got into a huge argument where he asked for the ring back and I threw it at him and went to my moms house for a couple days. I came back we talked and I said everything was fine but it wasnít. Got the ring back. I married him 3 weeks later while I was still upset with him.

My biggest problem since then has been that I feel like the person he presented being is not in reality who he is. I though things rarely bothered him, that he was infinitely zen and just kind and gentle. Turns out over the past year Iíve learned that he just holds it all in and never discusses issues and tryís to ďyodaĒ me as I put it. Where he gives some advice and walks away but never really addresses the actual issue I am having.

I go back and forth between wanting to stay and work on things, trying to talk about life and marriage and then getting frustrated and start looking at apartments on line. I feel guilty for feeling this way. I truly love the man I thought I was marrying. I didnít call it off because everything was bought and paid for and would have embarrassed my family.
I truly believe if he would just express himself we would be okay and if he would let me express myself with out him nonchalantly saying something cliches and zen sounding and then walking away.

I donít know what to do, he wonít go to counseling because he feels it is always a precursor to divorce, I feel like maybe we rushed in to things even though we dated for 3 years before we got married.

Can this be salvaged or it whatís going on indicating future divorce?

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    He REALLY needs to go into counseling. He can go by himself, to figure out why communicating honestly is so difficult for him. But the way he is behaving now is putting his comfort and convenience ahead of both you and the marriage, which shows a shocking lack of respect for both. His putting you off about counseling is just another attempt to deflect and delay dealing with the issue at hand, as usual.

    Good and honest communication is crucial to any lasting relationship. If he can't get over himself and learn how to communicate like an adult, then yes, for your own sake, you may need to go looking for that apartment.

    reply to Jill
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    In addition to Jill's excellent advice, I would say this -- if he won't go to counseling with you (or on his own), you should go yourself. He may well have issues communicating that desperately need to be worked on, but you've also got some things to work out ... like why you married a man you were upset with, or what signs you may have missed concerning his behaviour early on.

    The truth of the matter is that you can't make *any* person change, unless they want to. So if he is unwilling to change -- which certainly sounds as if it's the case -- you need to recognize that you can believe all you want that "if he would just express himself we would be okay". It has the same effect as believing that if he would just sprout wings, he could fly to the moon.

    This is a variant of a type of issue that pops up a lot in certain relationships -- "if he were only a completely different person, things would be great!' Because, honestly Anon? That's what you're saying. It's NOT just a situation in which he sometimes fails to communicate ... he's demonstrated over and over and over and over again that he is a person who does not communicate, period. And who likes it that way. And who is not willing to change it.

    Counseling might give you some tools you need to either figure out if it's worth sticking around, or to form a plan of action to bring things to a close.

    reply to Kal
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