My husband acts like he’s single and this is hurting our marriage. What I can do?
Sometimes I hear from wives who complain that their older husband is still behaving like a young, single man. At first, this type of behavior may seem annoying but harmless. Over time, though, it can start to become a lot more worrying and can make you wonder if there’s something driving him to act this way or if it means anything to your marriage.
I heard from a wife who said, “My husband still acts like he’s a college frat boy and he used to drive me crazy, but now I’m absolutely at the end of my rope. We have two little kids and he’s still driving around in a 2-seat convertible.” . He still doesn’t know what he wants to be when he grows up. He still needs to go out to bars with the boys. Apparently, he still needs to flirt with other women. And he thinks he’s entitled to a day of golf every Sunday. The other day, we were at a restaurant with our kids and my husband ran into someone he knew. He walked over to the other table and didn’t even bother to introduce me and the kids, almost like he didn’t. I don’t have a family. Why does he act like this? Is he ashamed of us? Is he not really committed to me? Why would a married man want to act like he’s single? And what can I do about it?
There are many reasons why married men act like they are single. I’ll discuss some of the reasons below and offer some suggestions on how to deal with it.
Some not-so-innocent reasons why married men try to act single: There are some negative reasons why married men will try to give the impression that they are single. Sometimes they seek to attract and see other women. Or, they want to give the impression that they are younger, carefree and unfettered than they really are. And, some men have withdrawn from their marriage and therefore want to distance themselves from their wife or minimize their marriage as much as possible.
Some innocent reasons why married men want to give the impression that they are single: There are some men who have low levels of maturity and who are reluctant to grow up. This may not be indicative of his commitment to his family or his love for his wife, but they may have negative connotations of a bored and stuck married man and they don’t want these descriptions to apply to them. So even if they are really committed to their family, they may not want to give that image because they are still interested in appearing young, modern and free. Typically, you would have seen this problem early in your marriage, long before you had children.
The type of issue you’re dealing with (and which of the above descriptions is most applicable to your husband) will influence how you approach him. But it’s important that you approach him because this is a bigger problem than the fact that he seems single. This theme encompasses respect, commitment, and important perceptions in her marriage.
How to handle a husband acting single: As I mentioned, if you suspect your husband seems single to be unfaithful, then your approach would not be the same as if he was acting single due to his own immaturity or unwillingness to grow up. However, a suggested script might go something like: “Sometimes it seems to me that the perception you give off is that of one man. I don’t want you to feel like you’re tested and don’t have any chance to have fun with your friends. I want to that you’re happy and excited about your life, but I’d like you to be excited and proud to be a part of our family. I’d like you to include us in your life more than you do. Because sometimes when you don’t you do, I worry that you’re not really happy and committed to being a part of our family. And when that happens, I worry about our marriage. I want a husband who’s so proud to be married to me that he doesn’t care if everyone knows he’s already married. He has spoken for him. I want a father for my children who wants to show them off instead of hiding them from everyone. We are already adults. There is nothing wrong with being proud to be part of a family. I love you. I am proud that you are my husband and I. I want mos Treat everyone I know When you don’t do the same, it hurts me and makes me question your commitment to me. Are you willing to do better to give me more security? Because if you’re not, I’m very worried about our marriage. I am not sure how you can have a safe and healthy marriage if one of the spouses refuses to acknowledge that he is married. And it is not giving our children the father they deserve. Will you commit to making this a priority?”
Make sure you don’t sound accusatory or call him an immature frat boy. But make it clear to him that something has to change and that he has to be the one to change it.