Dear Sista Girl,
My wife and I have been together for more than 30 years.
I have given her the benefit of doubt throughout our relationship. She shared her dreams and goals with me when we first met and I was impressed and looked forward to her many accomplishments. I looked the other way over the decades as she did less and less.
As time goes on, I am less willing to forgive her transgressions and inconsiderate actions toward to me. The gap widens. I fear there is little to salvage. What advice do you have?
I applaud your efforts to make this relationship work.
First, ask yourself if you married her for who you thought she would be or who she was 30 years ago. If you loved the person she was, ask yourself if she is still, at the very core, the same person you met. If she is the same, then you are with her because you loved the person, not her dreams. If you fell for her potential, why have you stayed? Clearly, she’s not going to do what she told you.
It is very likely that life itself got in the way of her goals. When we are young, we talk a lot about what we want to be and do. Some things are unrealistic, most are not. However, it does require commitment and dedication. After a few years, she probably gave you some indication through her actions whether she had either.
The best two pieces of advice I can give you are: 1) seek marriage counseling, and 2) express your feelings in real time. Don’t hold back or hold in your feelings of disappointment and pain. Let her know that her inconsiderateness or transgressions hurt you. When we don’t say anything, others think it is okay to do what they do. It is unfair to the other person for you to bring it up years later. It also causes internal damage to you and your relationship to suffer in silence.
Best wishes, Sista Girl
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Note: The opinions stated here are not intended to replace any services from professional providers, authorities, and/or legal counsel.