To The Man Who Stopped Appreciating His Wife

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unhappy couple

Dear Man,

You've grown tired of your wife's sh*t, you say. Why doesn't she do X, Y, or Z more? Why does she nag you?

Why does she leave the laundry for you to fold? Why doesn't she wear more lingerie? Why does she breathe funny?

You can't help yourself it seems.

Everything your wife does annoys the living hell out of you.

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You look at your friends and their marriages. They seem so happy. Your one friend? His wife is so hot. She looks like she would be wild in bed, even when the kids are awake.

Your other friend? His wife is so sweet.

"I bet she never talks back," you think. You find yourself scrutinizing all the many "wives" in your path. They're better. Hotter. Nicer. In all things and in all ways your wife fails.

Then there are the unattached ladies. The real wildflowers in your garden. They ooze sex appeal. The thirst level explodes from you.

You want so badly to have an affair. A one-night stand. A passionate night of hot sex that's never spoken about again. The itch needs to be scratched.

So while you fantasize and tear apart your wife  internally, aloud, and to her face  you withdraw your love and affection from your wife, making it a cold war.

The bed is cold, the feelings are cold and the space between the two of you becomes larger and wider by the second, minute, hour, and day.

The person you were once so close to seems like an alien. 

How did you get here? How did you choose her? Why did you get married? Everything you've done with her seems like a lie or farce. Except, it's neither. The only farce is you.

You've bought into the idea that your wife is so flawed and have sold yourself on every walking female, not realizing that you've become the joke. You've become the problem.

Your desire to find nothing wonderful in your wife (and something wonderful in everyone else) has set you up to be greatly disappointed.

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One day you will see that the grass is no longer greener on the other side like you had hoped and that what you had lost was truly more precious than what you have now found.

You've sold yourself to the idea that a wife must be the man's everything and anything. That she belongs on a pillar, and to stay there, she must meet your ever-expanding and excruciatingly detailed list of needs — but she doesn't.

The problem lies within you.

When you find yourself tearing into your wife, the one you promised to cherish "'til death do you part," the person you really want to tear into is yourself.

No one becomes that critical unless he or she cannot bear to be in the body he or she is in. Criticism of others is the true sign of internal self-hatred.

To the man who stopped appreciating his wife, I'm sorry you're so married to your own self-hatred and ridiculously high standards that no one, not even G*d himself, could probably reach.

I hope you realize that there are piss and bald patches in the garden next door. Return back to the garden that's waiting for you, longing for your sunshine and rain.


The Woman Who Wasn't Appreciated

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Laura Lifshitz writes about divorce, sex, women’s issues, fitness, parenting, and marriage for YourTango, New York Times, DivorceForce, Women’s Health, Working Mother, Pop Sugar, and others. Visit her website for more.