Relationships are tricky. Before you even realize it, the relationship that used to give you butterflies in your stomach becomes a bone stuck in your throat. As you gradually find yourself falling out of love in marriage, you are left pondering over the question – “What to do when you fall out of love with your husband?” Things can get really murky as you struggle with a whirlwind of emotions that are difficult to be pinned down.
Every relationship is the product of efforts and time dedicated to deep-seated feelings; feelings that are often expected to last lifelong. The social construct might lead you to think, “Falling out of love in a long-term relationship? Is that even possible? And how do you even spot the signs you’ve fallen out of love with your husband?” While going through tough times is indeed a default for any couple, falling out of love in a long-term relationship is something that is hardly ever talked about or even realized and admitted. But trust us, you’re not alone. It is absolutely real and normal.
Tackling such relationships that have lost their passion and zeal is not easy. While you are trying to cope with the changes in your feelings, you are still oscillating like a pendulum between staying and separating.
But before you take a call, how do you know if you are falling out of love with your husband? What are the signs? And most importantly, what to do when you fall out of love with your husband? Let’s try to find an answer to all these, and more, along with our life coach and counselor Joie Bose, who specializes in counseling people dealing with abusive marriages, breakups, and extramarital affairs.
Before moving on to her guidance and tips to survive falling out of love in marriage, we shall delve deeper into the topic to understand it better.
Is It Normal To Fall Out Of Love With Your Spouse?
Both falling in love and falling out of love are feelings that are beyond human control. You might think “I’m falling in love too fast” without being able to check or restrain it. Over a course of time, it might feel like “I don’t love him anymore” with, again, no command over your heart. It is absolutely normal to feel the love gradually fade away.
Falling out of love in marriage is not taboo. It is natural to grow over time. There are different stages in a relationship where the feelings might undergo a sea change. At times, you’d discern, “My husband does nothing for me, I am so done with him!” But eventually, you can’t help but fall for him all over again.
As Joie observes, “No one can ever fall out of love with someone. It is just that the passion wavers due to circumstances.” So every time you feel like you have fallen out of love with your husband, it is actually diminishing instead of decreasing. It is your present situation that makes you feel like your love is drying up.
What Are The Signs Of Falling Out Of Love With Your Husband?
Every relationship goes through upheavals. What matters is how you feel about your partner and how your feelings resonate during those turbulent times. Every tiff cannot be taken to mean the end of a relationship. Every argument does not suggest that your husband doesn’t love you anymore.
How do you know if you are falling out of love with your husband? Falling out of love in a long-term relationship is a gradual process. It is not something that is abrupt or momentary. There are numerous indications that can hint at your marriage falling apart. This also brings us to the next question – What to do when you fall out of love with your husband? Do you tend to the issue or try to move on from the marriage? Let’s try to get an insight into the topic from Joie.
1. You don’t care for him anymore
“The first sign is,” Joie points out, “that you begin to genuinely not care about what’s happening to the person – good or bad.” You are no longer concerned about his well-being. While love is always associated with a lot of TLC (tender loving care), you know you have fallen out of love with your husband when there is none of the earlier caring disposition. Joie continues, “Your only concern is if an event in his life would require an action from your end or not. It’s that clinical.” Your feelings for him make an exit as you turn detached and cold.
2. There are communication problems in the relationship
Communication is the key to every relationship. It bridges the distance between two people and brings them closer. Joie considers the increasing communication gaps to be another important factor that hints at the dwindling love. Lack of communication is the harbinger of stagnancy in relationships. You no longer have meaningful conversations with each other. You are wanting in listening skills. You no longer ask interesting questions to understand each other better. This is a tell-tale sign you’ve fallen out of love with your husband.
3. You don’t fantasize about your partner anymore
This one is self-explanatory. Joie suggests you ask yourself, “When you’re getting intimate, do you always dream or fantasize about other people?” If your answer to this is in the affirmative and if, during sex, you’re thinking, “I don’t love him anymore”, then this is a clear indication of fading love. He is no longer your love interest. Even though you are in his embrace, you have someone else on your mind. Difficult marriages often find love outside it. In this case, the focus of your love shifts its base and finds support in another person. Or, even if you are not attracted to or in love with anyone else, you’ve certainly fallen out of love with your husband.
Related Reading: Finding Someone Special After Marriage In A Friendship
4. You are happier away from your partner
How do you know if you are falling out of love with your husband? The quality time spent together with your husband now feels like a burden. You no longer enjoy being in the same company. Love is usually more about sharing moments, feelings, and experiences together. When you are wary of doing this, you know you are falling out of love in marriage. Joie adds straightforwardly, “If you have planned to go somewhere or do something together and he backs out for some reason, you feel happy and relieved.” This is how you know you are out of love with that person.
5. Your attitude toward your husband changes
You find your partner annoying. You feel, “My husband does nothing for me”. You make yourself less available to him, physically and emotionally. You are least bothered by what he thinks when you ignore him. As the sense of detachment deepens, your feelings withdraw from him. You have definitely fallen out of love with your husband if your attitude toward him is changing, for the worst. The cloak of indifference is hiding some serious signs of the end of your long-term relationship.
7 Things To Do When You Fall Out Of Love With Your Husband
The above discussion lays bare the signs you’ve fallen out of love with your husband. Discerning these signs, you gauge your fading love for your partner. But what are you supposed to do now? The million-dollar question you are now faced with is – what to do when you fall out of love with your husband? You could take your pick from rekindling your lost love or breaking up, both of which are not as easy as they might seem at the first glance.
If you decide to create a balanced relationship with your husband, you must find ways to take a step back and save your dying relationship. What matters here is mutual efforts and interest. A relationship can only be revived when both the partners are equally invested in the cause. One-sided love cannot survive to salvage any relationship. Let’s have a look at what tips our expert counselor Joie has to share.
1. Remember the good ol’ times
Every relationship goes through the honeymoon phase when the dreamy-eyed lovebirds can’t get enough of each other. Think of those times and ponder over what it was that you did differently back then? Maybe dining out or frequent date nights? Rekindle that spark in your heart. Take a cue from our list of date night ideas and fall in love all over again. Go for a stroll. Dance your heart out (with him, of course). Enjoy the simple pleasures of life along with him.
Joie suggests, “Do typical couple things together such as drives, dinners, vacations, and making memories.” Being together will help you bond better. As hard as it may be initially, relive the old times when you were head over heels for him. You might continue to feel fallen out of love with your husband, but the trick is to overcome and negate that feeling. For once, go back in time and be the same newly wedded couple you once were. Madly and passionately in love.
2. Appreciate and respect each other
What to do when you fall out of love with your husband? You consciously try to appreciate and respect each other. No love boat can survive the turbulent waters without the anchors of respect, trust, and faith. Cling to these anchors. As the waves hitting the shores recede, so will your indifference and bitterness for him. Mutual respect in a relationship forms a strong foundation.
We all have our flaws. And we should learn to accept them, whether the flaws are ours or our partner’s. They need to be embraced instead of being scoffed at. Feeling unappreciated in a relationship can only make things go south. Little acts of appreciation go a long way. Let your partner know the little nuances or eccentricities that you love in them. Instead of widening the gulf between you two, try to bridge it with simple acts of kindness and appreciation as the cornerstones.
Related Reading: 9 Examples Of Mutual Respect In A Relationship
3. What to do when you fall out of love with your husband? Communicate
Joie swears by the role of “talking and connecting more often” in building up a relationship. One of the most poignant signs you’ve fallen out of love with your husband is the ever-increasing communication gap. Try to work on keeping the communication channels open. Sit down and have a heart-to-heart conversation with your husband. Ask interesting questions to your partner to understand him better. Retain the element of fun in your conversations and relationship, or get serious with deep relationship questions. The idea is to connect better.
Having meaningful conversations with your husband can help you determine your way forward. Falling out of love in marriage leaves you with two doors open in front of you – you rekindle the love or you forget the love. Discussing your feelings with your spouse will help you decide better.
4. Prioritize your partner
It is often seen in relationships that spouses take each other for granted. One of my dearest friends found herself going through the same. During one of our 2 A.M. conversations, she broke down, “I feel like I don’t love him anymore. I know I don’t care for him like I used to.” It is natural and quite easy to stop showering your partner with all the earlier care and attention. Long-term relationships often tend to meet this fate.
To revive and rejuvenate your relationship, return to your dating phase. The time when you cared for each other. The time when you expressed your feelings more often. Pamper them with your love and care. Joie points out how consciously deciding to care for each other can work wonders for the relationship. Try to woo them with your antics or with your love gestures. Spice up your marriage with whatever it takes.
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5. Be genuine with your emotions
What to do when you fall out of love with your husband? You put your most genuine self forward. Relationships cannot thrive on the base of pretensions and facades. A relationship where you don’t feel like yourself can be suffocating. Real love cannot blossom when planted under false conditions. Be authentic and real to your partner. Stop fitting into molds or abiding by preconceived notions. How can they be any good to you if you are not your real self?
Rediscover yourself on this journey and start sharing with your partner again. Even if you feel, “My husband does nothing for me, he has taken me for granted!”, let the steam out. Don’t hold on to grudges. As Joie aptly puts it, “When you are angry, react. Don’t go silent on him. Silence is a big catalyst in relationships that are going downhill.” Silent treatment in a relationship can meddle with the couple’s dynamics. Instead, react to the situation, give a vent to your feelings, and iron out the creases.
6. Introspect, reflect, and respond
Take a moment to look within yourself. Introspect and attempt to pin down the flaws and mistakes that led to falling out of love in a long-term relationship. Without getting embroiled in any blame games, reflect on what went missing in your relationships. Shift your focus from how your partner contributed to your relationship to considering what you brought to the table.
It is easier to set expectations from your husband. But ask yourself first, have you been meeting the same standards in your marriage? Benchmarks are for both the partners to meet. Treat your partner the way you want to be treated by them. Find out your shortcomings, and figure out how you can work on them. Rome was not built in a day, and the same stands true for every successful relationship – it takes time and dedicated effort. Bring a change and try to break free from the problematic patterns.
Related Reading: Expectations In Relationships: The Right Way To Manage Them
7. Let it go
Anything that needs to be forced, deserves to be let go of. Fight for your relationship if both of you are ready for it, if you think it can be a harbinger of true love. In case either of you is not motivated or dedicated, it is better to let go of your partner. You can’t fight a battle that is already lost. Love that is wilted cannot be brought back to life. What matters here is your love for yourself, after all, no one wants to be in a relationship that meddles with their sanity or happiness.
Joie shares her opinion, “It’s okay to fall out of love with someone you were once in love with as long as this action makes you love yourself more. The only person you can’t afford to fall out of love with is yourself.” For couples with kids, she advises considering the happiness of the kids too. She says, “Kids are okay with divorce if it puts both the parents in a happy place. They are not okay with unhappy parents who fight.”
Falling out of love is understandable. What is not justifiable is compromising on your own happiness. What to do when you fall out of love with your husband? Do what makes you happy. Revive the relationship if you want to, or let go of it if you have the resources to make that decision.
Falling out of love in marriage need not necessarily translate into a divorce. You can regain the lost love with dedicated effort if both the partners want the relationship to work. Failed marriages can get back on the right track with renewed love. But do opt for separation if the relationship continues to stifle you or your happiness. The bottom line is – choose what makes you happy.
Falling out of love with your husband is acceptable. Relationships do evolve over the years and feelings undergo a massive change. Rekindle your love if you want the relationship to work. Try out the above listed tips laid out by our expert. If not, you can move on. It is your decision.