She wrote to say that she is tired of being in an abusive marriage. She’s tired of telling her husband she needs more and him ignoring her words. She’s tired of trying to make a bad marriage good. She says she used to believe in love lasting forever but now she says she can’t feel any love at all.

Many men question why their wives would suddenly decide they want out of a perfectly good marriage. They fail to see that while the marriage may be grand for them, their prior years of being a major dropout in the marriage have finally caught up and it’s payback time.

In this woman’s situation, she gave everything she had, time and time again, only to find it wasn’t good enough for her husband. She steeled herself to the rejection and pain and each time grew a little stronger and a little less needful of her husband’s support, approval or love.

Now, when her husband says he’s ready to settle into a loving marriage, she doesn’t have any love left to give. Her walls are up and the door is locked. Will her husband say she’s acting irrationally? That she’s not herself anymore? Would he question whether or not she’s having a midlife crisis? Perhaps it could be called a “midlife awakening” as she realizes she won’t live forever.

We all handle our stresses differently. Some people can accept their partner’s faults without any apparent erosion of love. Some can’t. It might have to do with the individual’s personal strengths. It might have to do with what they need from a relationship.

Being in love with someone who is abusive, addicted, a cheat, or otherwise out of the marriage by their actions, is not easy to handle. Giving the offending spouse chances to change is certainly the mature thing to do.

Sometimes, though, the mature thing to do is to cut your losses and say goodbye, because, as much as they may have changed for the better, it’s too little, and much too late.

© Pat Gaudette. All rights reserved.