At every quarrel my husband talks about divorce. What does that mean?
My husband at the slightest conflict between us, even at a misunderstanding, he talks about divorce. I do not understand why and I am afraid that one day I will agree. I am trying my best to keep the family together. Well, if there was a serious reason, then I would understand. But at any disagreement with his opinion – let’s get a divorce, I’m tired of it, well, more often all this is said with foul language. Of course there are other issues regarding his attitude to me, but this is something else. He is a man of surprise. I never know how he will react to my words or actions. There is always fear and the question: Am I doing the right thing? Or how will he react? I just want to live and love and not be afraid of anything. I’m not one of those people who live as they like. My mother instilled a sense of duty and responsibility. But this kind of tension is too much. I want to relax. I never wrote such letters and did not talk to psychologists. But at my age I already want peace. It is impossible to be constantly in such a state of tension and to control every word and every step. Maybe you have some advice for me?
Question author: Larisa Age: 59
The question is answered by psychologist Radionova Olga.
Larissa, hello. As far as I understand you correctly, her husband every time you quarrel, says about the divorce, and you are tired of his threats, you are tired and want peace. Let’s work it out.
Larissa, tell me how long have you and your husband conflicts end with threats of divorce? How many years are you together? What do you have in common? Did you have an understanding in your relationship?
You wrote that you are trying your best to keep the family together, and your husband doesn’t want a family? What is his role in the family? Are you afraid that someday you might agree to his decision to separate, and what scares you most about that decision, what is the scariest thing behind divorce for you? Maybe being alone?
Larissa, on the one hand, you want to live a quiet, stress-free life, but on the other hand, the very thought of separation terrifies you and makes you wonder every time if you are doing the right thing or if you are doing the right thing. It feels like your happiness in life depends on whether or not you please your husband, constantly adjusting to his mood.
How does your husband treat you when you are not fighting, how much does he appreciate, love and respect you? Do you love him?
If every time you argue your husband is threatening to leave you, it is probably just manipulation, it means that you are afraid he will leave, and he can continue to behave the way he wants. Has he ever left you before? Does he have somewhere to go?
Larisa, it is important to understand why you are quarrelling each time, who initiates the conflict, because the situations are cyclical. Why does your husband need to leave you, what he does not like most of all in your life together? Perhaps the conflicts arise from the fact that you are constantly controlling him? Is there trust between you?
Larissa, I noticed the phrase that you “are not the kind of person who lives as they please. What kind of people are you? Is it possible to interpret your phrase as saying that you should live in a way that makes others feel good, a kind of self-sacrifice for others? You live as you are told and you can’t have your own opinion and make your own choices, does it sound like that?
Now you need to figure out, what do you owe and who are you responsible for in life? Try to ask yourself the most important question: why can’t you relax and have to be afraid all the time? What should your life ideally look like? Try to imagine it and what you will need to do to achieve that life? What resources are you lacking?
I encourage you to finally want to relax and live your life in peace, but to do that you need to figure out the reason why you are not allowing yourself to do so.
As a recommendation:
Larissa, take a notebook and make several lists:
– In the first write down all the things you ideally expect from your husband to you, that is, how he needs to behave with you so that you do not have misunderstandings.
– In the second list write down all the things that are in reality in your relationship, how he behaves with you and what he gives you.
– In the third list write down all the grievances that you would like to show him, but do not say.
– In the last list write down what you are unhappy with yourself, what you berate yourself for, or what you blame yourself for.
These lists, Larisa, will help you to understand your feelings about yourself, your husband, your expectations of him, and his real attitude toward you.
Larissa, you can read the book by Sergey Petrushin: “100 traps in your personal life. How to recognize and avoid them. “It describes the different traps in your personal life and how to overcome them.
I highly recommend the book “Liberation from Co-Dependency” by B. Winehold. It has a lot written about the causes of co-dependency, and also provides exercises on how to cope with it. There is a test for co-dependency in the book, which you can take.
I will list for you the symptoms of co-dependency, maybe something will resonate with you:
– A feeling of being dependent on people;
-A feeling of being trapped in a humiliating, controlling relationship;
-needing constant approval and support from others to feel that you are doing well;
-Feeling powerless to change in a destructive relationship;
– The need for alcohol, food, work, sex, or some other external stimulant to distract from your experiences;
-uncertainty of psychological boundaries;
-self feeling like a martyr;
-self feeling like a buffoon;
-Inability to experience a sense of true intimacy and love.
Larissa, if you have the desire and opportunity to work through the cause of your tension and fear of doing something wrong, then email me.
Husband threatens and manipulates the divorce, but is not divorced: Advice from a psychologist
If the husband at every quarrel talks about divorce – it is serious. If a man, fighting, threatens to end the marriage, you need to know that this can lead to very far-reaching consequences. They range from undermining authority in future disputes to the actual dissolution of the marriage. It is important to know why this happens, as well as what to do if faced with such manipulation.
There are three common reasons why a husband talks about divorce in any argument. Once you are sure of why your spouse is doing this, you can decide how best to respond.
- They think only of themselves and have little control over their emotions. When something goes wrong, or when they are challenged about their behavior, they snap and throw tantrums. Their threat is a controlling and intimidating tactic designed to get them to back off and shut up. This person’s self-centered behavior, combined with their immaturity and lack of restraint, is likely to lead to problems in marriage.
- They are frustrated and feel unheard. They have repeatedly voiced the same grievances about the marriage, but feel that you have not listened to them. As a result, they feel they have no choice but to make a fuss.
- The husband manipulates the divorce because he’s doing things he shouldn’t – like having an affair and wanting to continue. For him, it is a means of controlling the situation to get his partner to back off. This man says, “I’m not sure how I feel right now…if you insist that I put an end to this, then I may have to divorce…” As a result, the wife is forced to think, “Oh no, if I push, he’ll leave me!” And the unfaithful partner continues to do what he does. The man may also use the “we’re getting a divorce” excuse to justify his current relationship with others, even if he has no real intention of filing for divorce anytime soon.
Loss of credibility.
If your husband threatens divorce but doesn’t divorce when a heated argument is in full swing, but never follows through, his credibility is undermined. If you do want a divorce in the future, it will be extremely difficult because you have created a “boy who cried wolf” situation. Moreover, it undermines your credibility in other situations, you become the person who says things you don’t follow through.
Dissolution of Marriage.
Another possible consequence of threatening is that the wife will support the idea. If you threaten and your wife says she likes the idea and immediately executes the paperwork, it will be difficult, if not impossible, to get out of this situation. So if you don’t really want a divorce, try to keep those thoughts to yourself.
Impulse in the relationship.
Although it conflicts with other consequences, the threat sometimes gives the relationship the momentum it needs. Divorce is a last resort; if you indicate to your partner that you are considering leaving, it can give both of them the impetus they need to start working hard on the relationship. However, the benefit of this technique is easily reversed if it reminds both of them that marriage is too hard for them and they can’t handle it.
Thoughts about the future.
The threat of divorce makes it real. Whether it is a real intention or not, it makes both partners think about it – are you ready to change your whole life and get out of the marriage? This is a key consequence because it forces both husband and wife to consider their interests. Good or bad, the threat makes you think about what is important to you and whether you are ready, even a little, for that change.
Emotions or cold calculation
There are many reasons why a husband threatens divorce. They can be immediate or strategic in nature. A man who really wants a divorce and uses manipulative divorce techniques should not threaten. Instead, he will clearly articulate his decision and take steps to initiate divorce proceedings. If the husband does not do this, it may be idle chatter. When it comes to divorce and threats, actions usually mean more than words.
Does the spouse really want it? Probably. And if he has made up his mind for himself, you probably can’t make your husband change his mind. If you “talked” him into staying, you’d only be condemning yourself to a life with a man who really doesn’t want to be with you.
Divorce is unpleasant, but it is much better than living in an unhappy marriage.
What to do
Ask yourself: “Why is my partner threatening?” and look at it objectively. Try to understand the motivation and your role in what is happening. Once you understand this, you can decide the best course of action. The threat of divorce is scary, but now is not the time to give in to your emotions. It’s time to think and then act.