Posts Tagged: Feeling lonely in marriage

How To Feel Closer Part I

Good morning Moms, Dads, Girlfriends and Lumber Jacks (that’s for all my hairy-faced friends.) Have you ever felt closed off from someone you love? Have you felt lonely in your marriage? I think one of the hardest places to be in life, is living in a house with someone you don’t feel close to. Don’t you agree?

Marriage can sometimes feel more like two roommates coming and going than two people in love. Or maybe marriage feels like co-parenting, where raising the kids is the only thing really keeping you together. 

Why do I feel locked out?

Where did the closeness go?

What about the friendship and romance and cute little gifts and loving words?

It seems like all  that’s left are the responsibilities.

You and your partner more than likely respect and value each other a great deal. You have been through a lot together, and don’t want to give up on the good that you have. But the feelings of loneliness, depression and boredom are hard to fight off. You’re afraid that any topic of significance might land you in a fight. Or that you’ll strike up a conversation, and you’ll get a one-word response. Or that a date night meant to bring you together will end up making you feel even further apart.

You are what I call… Losers. Don’t get offended just yet! Let me explain. Being a loser has nothing to do with how much time you sit on the couch, or how many bags of potato chips you consume or how many hours of Netflix you can binge in one setting. 

NO! Being a Loser just means that you are losing out on truly KNOWING one another. You are losing out on the INNER life of the other person because busy-ness, child-raising, job stressors, and pressures get in the way. You lose out on sharing deep, meaningful experiences together because life’s demands keep you distant and headed in separate directions. Relationship Losers lose out on each other. 

Relationship Losers feel like an invisible wall separates them from their partner and neither can see into one another’s heart. They are afraid to be vulnerable with each other. They are afraid to tell the other what they really feel or really want. They are afraid that if they really share their deepest selves, they will feel weak or be rejected.

If these things describe how you feel currently in your marriage, don’t worry. You’re not alone, and you don’t have to feel this way forever.

Many marriage go through times like this. It doesn’t mean that there are major issues, or that the marriage is broken, or that the coldness can’t be warmed up.

It DOES mean that the marriage needs some time and attention. Couples who find themselves Losing Out on each other are in the PRIME POSITION for their next INTIMACY BREAKTHROUGH. These couples long to not only get back the closeness they used to have, but they want something even deeper. They just don’t know how to get it.

Next week, I’m going to talk about three simple ways to rekindle some intimacy through:

1. Having “THE” Conversation

2. Breaking Down Walls, and

3. Getting back some US time.

For now, spend some time looking inward about the fears you may have about getting closer. Usually people fear one of two things in relationships: 1) Being Abandoned, or 2) Being Controlled. Explore the fears you have regarding getting closer to your partner. Maybe you wonder if he’s capable of loving you the way you need. Maybe you’re afraid of disappointing your partner. Maybe you’re afraid of exposing your vulnerabilities because of potential judgment. Whatever your fears may be, they are difficult to admit, but common to all of us.

Next week, we will look at practical steps to help turn your Loser relationship into a Lover relationship.



How to Be Your Own Best Friend: Especially When Loneliness is Knocking

Hello to the Best People on Earth. I’m so happy you joined me today to talk about intimacy with The Self. For the last three weeks, we’ve been discussing how to nurture intimacy in your relationships. Intimacy is often intimidating because it requires risk, self- disclosure and willingness to feel vulnerable. Humans don’t naturally like these things. Intimacy takes courage.

But what about intimacy with yourself? What if you’re alone in your house. No one is calling. No one is texting. It’s Friday night and loneliness settles over you like a dark fog? Or what if the discord in your family relationships is so thick that even though you’re in a house full of people, you still feel shut out?

Loneliness is a depression trigger. If loneliness starts to settle in to your every day life, depression might be hot on its tail, leaving sad and sleepless nights in its wake. Loneliness speaks. It says things like, “What’s wrong with you? Everyone else has someone but you,” and “Other happy families are going places and doing things together, and “You missed the boat. Your chance at relationship happiness is over.”

Loneliness needs a muzzle, don’t you think? These kind of thoughts are no bueno because they are grossly exaggerated, they lack evidence, and they are just unproductive. 

Here are some ways to cultivate intimacy with yourself, thereby muzzling the criticism of loneliness.

  • Don’t Abandon Yourself. Just because you are alone, doesn’t mean you have to be lonely. You are not BY YOURSELF, as much as you are WITH YOURSELF. Re-frame the way you see alone-ness. Frame it positively instead of negatively. View your alone time as an opportunity not afforded to all, to meditate, to dig deeper, to think through, to curiously research, to formulate ideas and put them into practice- to mine the gold of your own soul. 
  • Do What You Want: Alone time gives you the opportunity to explore, experiment, practice and create what you really want to do. Find out what you like and get really good at it. practice it, work at it, master it. 
  • Take a Risk: the fact is, you need other people, and other people need you. Invest yourself in a group of people who care about you. I believe that the best groups are structured groups. I learned a few years ago, that unless I structured my time to see my friends, I would never see them. I joined the groups they lead, the classes they taught and the teams they were on. Yes, I went to PTA meetings I didn’t want to go to, and I cycled through SPIN class I cursed myself for trying, and I looked idiotic at Zumba- but, heck I was with my friends! Which was the whole point. Take a risk, and find a structured environment that nurtures friendship. Invest your time and heart into these environments and they will pay you back in big ways.

My brother and sister were 10 and 12 years older than me. By the age of 7, I was raised as an only child with two working parents. I spent a lot of time alone and there are still times, though surrounded by loving Mr. Dashing, Sweet and Sassy and the neediest dog on earth, my past gets triggered. My one constant from childhood till now, is my faith in Christ. I often feel God’s presence in the sunset, a favorite poem or the humming bird that visits the porch. 

Intimacy with the Self is a life long goal and can be practiced when we feel most alone. 

My “Relationship Savvy” blog gives you tips, advice, and flippin’ fantastic feel-goods to help with your most difficult relationship challenges.

Subscribe to our mailing list