15 Subtle Signs A Man Feels Stuck In An Unhappy Marriage

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woman and unhappily married man

I have a friend of mine who works around the corner from me, and boy does he see some things while talking with customers.

One of the most common things he sees is unhappily married couples, and he actually can spot an unhappy marriage from a distance. I know this because we often talk about them.

Ever wonder if your husband or guy friend really isn’t as happy in his relationship as he says he is?

Here are 15 signs of an unhappily married man.

1. He often jokes about leaving his wife.

Say what you will, but there’s often quite a bit of truth to jokes. You may have noticed unhappy employees joking about wanting to burn down their workplace, or joking about how they’re not paid enough.

The same thing applies to people who are unhappy with their marriage.

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2. When trying to boast, he flaunts his money and his career — but not his wife.

Men will flaunt and boast about the things they think really make their lives wonderful.

If he barely ever mentions his wife, it’s probably because he’s trying to forget she exists on one level or another. (Or, because he no longer sees her as important.)

3. He actively avoids hanging out with his kids or is overly angry with them.

People who regret having kids are pretty easy to read when they’re around their offspring. They often will find ways to “pawn kids off” on in-laws or otherwise just look for sympathy for just existing near them. If he really resents them, he may have a habit of being very angry or even abusive with them.

And if he resents kids, he likely resents the mom, too.

4. He seems to come up with excuses not to be at home with his spouse.

Just like women do, a man who is really unhappy at home will take up longer hours at work or find new reasons to stay away from home. In these situations, it’s often a self-preservation act that shields them from emotional abuse or otherwise negative vibes.

5. You’ve heard him tell single guys to never get married.

Here’s the thing about a man who says this: he’s admitting that he feels he made a mistake when he married. If he didn’t feel like it was a mistake, then why would he tell others that it’s a mistake for them to ever get married?

6. His overall vibe is one of a beaten up old car.

One small subtlety that never escapes my eye is seeing how many men look tired all the time after a couple of years of marriage. They look beaten down. While this can be a sign of general depression, I often find it to be a very common sign among unhappily married men, too.

7. He doesn’t have the same spunk, warmth, and joie de vivre he used to have.

If you’ve known this guy for a long time, you’ve seen him in his “glory days.” And if you’ve stuck around for as long as you have, you probably stuck around because he used to be (or still is) an awesome human being who has that spark of life.

When you’re in an unhappy marriage, that spark people tend to have when happy get sucked out. So, if he’s no longer as happy go lucky as he used to be, there may be some trouble in paradise.

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8. You’ve caught him shouting at his wife in public.

Okay, if you see this, there are serious problems in a relationship that should probably be ended in divorce.

She’s probably being abused, or infidelity is happening there, or both. Either way, it’s just not a good look.

9. He complains to you all the time.

This could be a sign that he’s trying to have an affair with you or it could be that he’s legitimately depressed.

However, if he’s whining that much, you need to avoid being the other woman and developing feelings for him. So, tell him that he needs to get a divorce.

10. He’s been looking into a divorce, has asked about divorce, or tells you he’s contemplating divorce.

If a man says this to a woman, he could be looking for an affair, so watch out.

On the other hand, if a man is saying this to you and your guy friend, then you probably can bet your bottom dollar that he’s miserable.

11. His wife seems to want an affair, advice, or to leave.

Usually, this is a sign that typically appears when women are alone together.

If his spouse is talking about serious relationship problems that go beyond the “lazy, complacent husband” spiel, there’s a good chance that he’s miserable and looking to leave.

12. He’s struggling with an addiction.

A lot of people who are really not handling life or stress very well will turn to booze, drugs, or gambling as a way to feel okay with what’s going on in their lives.

If you notice he’s picking up the bottle a lot more often than he used to, this may be the reason why.

13. Everything around him feels repressed.

Does his persona seem like it’s forced? Do you get the feeling that he wants to say something to you but can’t?

More often than not, this is a sign that his married life is making him miserable and that he doesn’t know how to break free.

14. He gets irrationally angry seeing women treating men well, or seeing men who are happy in relationships.

People don’t get angry seeing other people having what they have.

If he’s fuming mad just by seeing others making out passionately or gets irrationally upset when he looks at couples having fun, he’s probably suffering behind closed doors.

15. When around his wife, he’s cold, businesslike, or even downright hateful.

This is generally the biggest indicator that something’s amiss.

And if you’re his wife, you probably may have had an inkling something was wrong already.

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Ossiana Tepfenhart is a Jack-of-all-trades writer based out of Red Bank, New Jersey. When she's not writing, she's drinking red wine and chilling with some cool cats. You can follow her on Twitter.

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