I can think of few things that are more devastating than having your husband admit that he doesn’t love you anymore. Because this is so tough, you will often try to look for the silver lining in the situation. Perhaps he just had an off day and denied loving you out of frustration. Or, if the love has left, perhaps you can get it back as long as he hangs around. Speaking of which, that can become a point of concern also. Many wives do not understand why a husband who has claimed to no longer love them is still in the house and hasn’t yet made a plan to leave.
These wives might share a concern like this one: “my husband and I have been fighting non-stop lately. During one of our fights, he blurted out: ‘this is a joke. We don’t even love each other anymore.’ I replied by telling him that I absolutely still love him. And then, to clarify, I asked him if he loved me or not. He said that as things stand right now, he doesn’t think so. Since that night, I have prepared myself for him to move out or to initiate a divorce. He has not. In fact, he just mopes around and seems happy enough to go with the negative status quo. He’s made it clear that he’s no longer invested in me because he does not love me. He thinks our marriage isn’t worth his time. And yet he stays with me and makes no attempt to leave. Why would a man who doesn’t love his wife stay put?”
Well, I can certainly give you some theories, although your husband would be the best person to give you a glimpse into what he is feeling. Below I will list what I think are possibilities, based on my research and from what I’ve heard from men in this situation (including my own husband, who did eventually pursue a separation before we reconciled.)
He May Know That His Frustration May Be Only Temporary: Without question, most of the time when you have the “I don’t love you anymore” conversation, you have it during a crisis or during a fight. There is usually an element of frustration that comes into play. And I often think that if you had the same conversation during a calmer time period, you might not hear him claim that he doesn’t love you. He may know this too, which is why he isn’t acting in haste about a separation or divorce. He may know in his heart that although he isn’t feeling particularly loving because of all of the fighting, the feelings of love may be just under the surface so that they could one day come back under the right circumstances. Considering this, he doesn’t want to do anything that might take this option off the table.
He May Feel A Sense Of Obligation To Try To See It Through: I think that, as a whole, our society is now much more aware of the damage that a broken home can do to both our children and to ourselves. Also, most of us are well aware that second marriages have a much stronger chance of failing than first marriages. So, most people do realize that the grass is not necessarily going to be greener on the other side of the fence. Knowing this, why hurt the people who we have promised to love before we are absolutely sure that nothing can be done? This type of thinking may be why your husband is staying put for now – he may hope that things get better and he doesn’t want to cause unnecessary pain before he absolutely has to.
He May Be Waiting To See What Happens: Things change in marriage. Sometimes, things feel wonderful. And other times, things feel awful. But often, if you just hang in there and pay attention to changes that need to be made, the awful can sometimes turn into the wonderful again eventually. And that very possibility might be why your husband is hanging around. He might think that its premature to pull the plug on a relationship as serious as marriage over a short string of fights. The situation can look differently as things calm down, which might be what he is waiting for.
Going Forward: So what does all of this mean for you? I think that you have to concentrate on the fact that he’s still there. I know that it would be easy to concentrate on his hurtful words. But words are not actions. And his actions show that he wants to stay with you for now. So if you are still invested in your marriage, that is where I would place my focus – on the fact that he stayed, which means that you still have a chance to save your marriage.