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Weekly Marriage Blog

Men, Your Wife May Be Dying

By Dr. David Clarke, Ph.D

The Big Idea

It's very possible that your wife is dying a slow death inside because she has no emotional intimacy with you. 

The Teaching

Most married couples have very little private talk time each week.  Jobs, kids, chores, and screens(phone, laptop, iPad, television) take up most of their time.  Conversations, when they happen, tend to be brief and about superficial topics.  So, emotional intimacy is practically nonexistent.  

The wife feels the pain and loss of this lack of emotional connection far more than the husband (if he notices at all).  For the husband, he is content and even happy if meals are being made, the kids are okay, and sex is happening.  Meanwhile, the wife is dying inside because there is no real closeness with her husband.    

She tries again and again to start deeper conversations, but is met with a brick wall.  Or, to use a word picture that a wise author uses (okay, it's me), a Clam.  In response to her comments and questions, he says nothing, grunts, or shares these pearls of communication energy:  
                                         "I don't know."
                                         "Okay."
                                         "Fine."
                                         "I don't want to talk about that now."
                                         (like he will talk about it later!)
                                         "What did you say?"

She gets more and more frustrated, hurt, and sad.  He has no clue that he is hurting the woman he loves.  He has no clue that he is denying her one of her greatest needs:  emotional intimacy. He has no clue how to develop deeper conversations with her.  

Husband, if you have the guts, ask your wife-today- to read this blog and tell you her reaction to it.  Ask her to rate the level of emotional intimacy in your marriage, from one to ten.  One being: I'm living with a man who has the intimacy skills of a couch.  Ten being:  we have regular and deep conversations.  Before you think I'm judging anyone, I was the couch in my marriage for years.  

Wife, if you are the one reading this blog, ask your husband-today-to read it and ask him for his reaction to it.  And, talk to him honestly about the level of emotional intimacy in your marriage. 

In the blogs to follow, I will give you husbands (and wives) practical strategies to deepen your communication.  For extra information on communication, get my book:  Honey, We Need to Talk.  It is designed for a couple to go through together.  

Also, there are two videos I did with Focus on the Family on my Honey book.  You will find these on my website:  davideclarkephd.com   It's a great idea to view these together.  

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