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deni's avatar

I've begun to feel bored in my relationship and I'm freaking out but I don't know what to do....What do I do!

Asked by deni (22660points) March 4th, 2011

I’m going to try to condense this….I know nobody wants to read a novel at 6:30 AM.

So thats it essentially, I’m bored. We’ve been together a year and a half, and we live together, so we see each other every night, unless I’m working which is usually only one night of the week. But he is so wrapped up in work, and has to go to bed so early so that he can get up at 4 AM, that we never do anything. We hardly have anything to talk about anymore!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (And I rarely feel like talking about the one thing he vents about all the time, which are his 7th and 8th grade students. I just can’t take anymore of it) Even when all I want to do is snuggle with him, he passes out. We rarely have sex. We don’t have time to do anything exciting like take swing dance classes or go out at night or ANYTHING.

I love him so much and vice versa, but sometimes I feel so hopeless.

I feel like a loon, I was watching Julie & Julia last night and crying like a baby just watching a fake happy movie relationship.

Those of you who have been married for a long time, have you felt this way? I don’t know what to suggest, I don’t know what to say, I don’t know how to fix this problem, please help me.

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36 Answers

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Sometimes, life sucks. Sorry you deserve better than that. If you both aren’t in a similar place, maybe it’s better to think about a break?

optimisticpessimist's avatar

Yes, I have been married almost 19 years. Times like these come and go. I find I usually have to take the initiative and plan something I want to do. He is more than willing to go along with it, but will not take the initiative himself. Since you said he is wrapped up in work, it is probably best to schedule something in advance so he can shift his work responsibilities around the plan. (This is guessing that he has work he needs to do at home which he can do whenever he wants as long as he gets it done.) I call them ruts when we fall into this kind of routine where we are living more like roommates. He probably feels the effect as well and will be happy with some changes too.

kess's avatar

Boredom come when you sit back expecting someone something to make you happy….

You get up take the initiative…cause happines because it is a part of you..do not allow boredom to rule.

Cruiser's avatar

If you are not happy now, you will either become numb and get used to the routine and 20 years later go WTH did I do that for….or face facts and realize now what you really want out of your life. It goes quick. Life is too short to face regrets later on in life.

Jude's avatar

I have to agree with kess here..

nikipedia's avatar

Are you bored or are you lonely? Do you feel resentful? Not valued?

You call this boredom but what you go on to describe doesn’t sound like boredom to me. It sounds like you don’t feel loved and valued, and that is not surprising given the lack of quality time and physical affection you describe.

Can you work around your partners schedule? Get up at 4am with him and have breakfast together? Get in bed when he goes to sleep, or suggest you both get in bed a half or before his bedtime? Can you reconnect on weekends and do something special together?

Is this fundamentally s scheduling problem or is something else going on here?

Supacase's avatar

Relationships have ups and downs. I have found that the downs come easily when we stop paying attention to our relationship and each other. The ups are sometimes harder to achieve, but so worth the effort.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Schedule something. Anything. OK maybe not anything – I would not like to be signed up for a swing class. Recognize that he is human and really does need to go to bed early if he has to get up at 4AM. What about the weekends? Can you two go out for early dinner and movie? Schedule it. Don’t keep him up to all hours. He has to get up early. If you have a free schedule? Try to match his.
You say you only work one day per week. .Do you get up at 4 AM too? Have you ever gotten up at the same time and eaten breakfast with him? . Cook eggs, bacon, or have pancakes, make coffee? . Does he get up alone, get ready, go out to the kitchen, and leave while you are still in bed?
You can help the situation Try to mix up your schedule. Talk about a nice dinner for just the two of you. Plan it. Try a new elaborate dish. Serve wine with dinner every now and then. Can you help him do what needs to be done? Enter data? Pay the bills? Do the mail? Cut the grass? If you are home and have the ability you can take some of the load off him and it will give you something to talk about.
Don’t pack it in until you realize you have some responsibility, too, and have tried your best. Remember, “Guys are dumb.” We only see in 16 colors, and appreciate the basics, sex, food, sleep. We are also not mind readers. If you want flowers tell him. If you want your back rubbed. tell him. Take a shower just before bed. That works for me.

I see that @nikipedia mentioned the 4 AM breakfast too. Great minds.

6rant6's avatar

I learned this on another website and I swear by it. Schedule a date night. That means you will have a time on one (or two) night(s) every week when you spend time together, maybe go out to dinner, and then you will have sex. Each partner is responsible for their own participation – grooming, getting enough sleep, being in a good mood, and getting out of their own pants if necessary.

Even if you can’t see how this could possibly be romantic in the long run, try it and see. I believe that’s exactly what your relationship needs. The anticipation changes the way you look at each other – reawakens what you used to dwell on.

And if you really want him to get that warm and fuzzy feeling when he thinks about you, make it a habit to take things into your own hand – possibly just “Thing” – on date night and at other unexpected moments.You can initiate sex too, you know. Just do it!

gorillapaws's avatar

I would definitely communicate exactly what you’ve said here to him. Often women assume that we’re able to read their “signals” and should know what’s wrong. Either the signals aren’t clear or we’re not particularly good at reading them, but women should be very clear and direct (like they’re talking to a child) if there’s something important they want to tell us.

Just tell him the truth, as you’ve said here, and he will either realize that he’s going to loose you if he doesn’t make changes to keep you happy, or he will be too self-absorbed to care (and you’ll be better off without him). Either option is better than where you stand now. Best of luck.

Sunny2's avatar

Wow. You need something to do! You can’t expect him to make your life. Get involved in something that interests you. If you don’t need the money, volunteer. Every guy brings home talk about work. You’re lucky he has work that is pretty interesting to talk about. (people) What if he was a tire salesman (for example). You need something to bring home to talk about too, something that will interest you as much as his teaching interests him. Then you can be a real partner.

deni's avatar

@Sunny2 Perhaps I miscommunicated the fact that….I’m not bored with life. I’m bored in this relationship because it is currently dull.

@gorillapaws I have told him all of this before, all of it. I don’t bottle things up, I just can’t. So he hears it all. And he’s heard this before, and he gets upset and promises that “next week I’ll do less work at home” but it never changes. There’s only 2 months left of the school year and I was looking forward to that, but now I’m nervous that it’s deeper than it just being him working too much. He has way less energy than me in general and, while I know that this is a really little thing, he is very rarely willing to be playful with me, and that bothers me to no end. :(

@nikipedia Maybe you’re right….I do everything I possibly can to make his life easier. I don’t think he’s done a dish in 3 weeks, but I really don’t mind, I do have more free time than him. I get up early with him and make him breakfast occassionally, but he rarely seems to appreciate it and that bothers me. Or, rather, he appreciates it but is too absorbed in getting more work done before he leaves at 5 AM to even look up and say thank you. Again, I KNOW ITS LITTLE, but over time it wears on me.

jhjbjkhlkjkhjl;jl.

sarahjane90's avatar

Move out! Him or you! I had this exact problem with my boyfriend of a year and a half – I asked him to move out. I had the exact feelings you did. We ended up breaking up for about 48 hours… and reconciled, and it has felt like a completely new relationship. We don’t see eachother every day, he comes over every couple of days. Some times he does not even stay over. We have some ‘fun’ and even actually laugh together again! We have things to tell each other now. I think honestly only space is going to cure the ‘itch’. If space is not an option, its possible that the resentment will increase.

I thought moving out would be the end of our relationship, but it is actually the beginning.

Cupcake's avatar

I have two questions.

1. What are your love languages?

2. Do you think he’s a workaholic?

deni's avatar

@Cupcake Quality time, I suppose. And yes, I do think he’s a workaholic…but not because he wants to be, but because his job forces him to be. He has grades due twice a week, and he’s already a verrrryyyyy sloooooow moving person to begin, so Monday and Wednesday nights are essentially spent grading and that’s it. And when he’s not grading, like for example this Monday we went out to eat and he kept looking at the clock and when I asked WHY he admitted he was worried he wouldn’t have enough time to do all his work. Meanwhile he had already spent 12 hours at work. I get that some people spend their lives putting work above all else, and that works for them somehow, and that’s fine, but I’ve told him time and time again THATS NOT FOR ME!!!!!!!!!! So stop doing it, or I’m leaving. So he quit, and isn’t teaching next year, and now I’m so scared that it’s more than just his work. (This is quite a flip flop from my question from a year and a half ago, “Do you think it’s odd to have feelings for someone you only met once?” huh?) :(

Cupcake's avatar

:( Boo.

What is his love language? Is he expressing his love to you in a way that you aren’t receiving it?

Any chance he’ll change school districts or something? Do you have hope? What does he do to make it better when you guys talk about it?

I want this to work for you so bad!!

deni's avatar

@Cupcake Well he isn’t teaching next year at all, we’re planning to do some traveling. So I’m excited but at the same time I think/know there are more problems than just him being consumed by work.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@deni Does he have any other interests or hobbies?

deni's avatar

@Adirondackwannabe Definitely but he has no time to pursue any of them. Which he is aware of and I think is another reason why he isn’t teaching next year. He doesn’t really have a life outside of school.

Cupcake's avatar

@deni but if he’s really an addict… it will just manifest itself another way when he’s not teaching.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@deni It could be a combination of his work habits and the job, but Cupcake might have hit it on the head. I worked a job once when I was his age that was eating me up, but, when I got home, I still wanted to tear the clothes off the girlfriend and spend some quality time with her.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@deni I know it’s a bummer, but what do you think he’ll be like in his forties? Or later?

blueiiznh's avatar

@deni I am so sorry to hear that your road has dipped into the boredom stage.
There are so many things that can be going on here.
Just taking the bull by the horns and planning something that he doesn’t know or buy into may exacerbate the frustration.
Tell him how you feel. It sounds like you both care deeply for each other and a caring conversation about what each of you needs is important to have from time to time especially in this phase.
In that conversation, get concurrence on doing some things to help the boredom. Try to work with him to schedule a few of those things that you crave and need to do. Ask him what things can help pull him out of his teaching mode.
I know its winter and each of us have our own struggles with long winters. I am unsure if that is playing into it also.
I wish you all the luck and prayers to help this.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@blueiiznh That was extremely well said.

marinelife's avatar

There is a lot of good advice here. Especially instituting date night.

You need to set up a time when he will be rested and can pay attention and talk to him.

Tell him how seriously you are feeling underappreciated and ground down by your lives together.

Tell him some ideas you have for improving things and ask him what he thinks would be good ideas.

Then tell him that you want him to have time to think about it (men need 9 hours or more to process conversations with a lot of emotional content) and you would like to get together and talk about his reaction in the next 48 hours. Ask him to set the day and time.

Meanwhile, you can consider reading Getting the Love You Want by Harville Hendrix. See if you can get him to read it too. It has some great exercises to help two partners rekindle the spark.

Your relationship is worth working on! Good luck.

cak's avatar

Oh Deni! First, don’t make the mistake of ever comparing a movie to real life. Remember, they can be perfect, because it isn’t real. I know you know that, but it is easy to try to compare real life to a movie when one isn’t quite happy.

Despite illness and injuries, life was good with my husband and family…then they added a different shift to his “regular” job, vs. his own business. He leaves the house at 5:30pm and comes home at 2:30a. It’s a royal pain in the rear! The kids get frustrated, at times. Last night my son had a major meltdown because he declared that he hated dad’s odd shift. Other times, it’s fine. Right now, because I cannot drive (cast on a bad foot for driving!) it’s frustrating for me. I feel stuck.

You have to talk about the time line and allow for his work, and he has to understand that on days off, he’s going to need to make an effort. Actually, both of you need to make the effort. It’s not easy when there is an odd time for work involved, but not impossible.

It’s going to take you willing to bend and him, too. I love the breakfast idea. There are evenings when I surprise my husband with a light snack to come home to, without him having to do anything for himself. Sometimes, he’s just starving when he gets home, but 2:30 isn’t a great time for a full meal. I’ll have some fruit and cheese or apples and peanut butter ready for him.

Communication is going to be key. If you love him, don’t walk yet. Give it a chance – give yourself a chance, too! :)

perspicacious's avatar

If you love him like you say you do, you can work this out. You have to let him know—tell him exactly what you’ve told us.

Bellatrix's avatar

You have already had lots of answers on this but yes all relationships can end up in a rut at times. They take hard work. When we start to take each other for granted, things fall apart. And truly, if you were dating, you would not treat each other like doormats who will put up with being ignored and neglected.

So, have you talked to him about how you are feeling? That might be a good place to start because he probably feels the same.

Also, the advice that you need to take the reins is spot on. I love my husband to bits but honestly if I waited for him to organise anything I would wait forever. He just doesn’t think about it. So I either organise or prompt him to organise weekends away. I organise for us to go out at least once a week for dinner and a movie or to a concert or something.

Brightening up your relationship doesn’t even have to be expensive or time consuming. Go for a coffee with each other. I often ring my husband before I leave work and say “I will be home in an hour, let’s go out and have a coffee together”. It gives us an opportunity to sit and talk and connect. We also have a coffee with each other every morning before work. Bit difficult to do at 4am I grant you, but he doesn’t work every day. Factor in some times to sit in the garden and talk, go for a walk together on his days off. Actually plan things. Cook a meal together. Send him a text in the middle of the day telling him to get home by xxx and have afternoon sex. Just start engaging with each other again.

I just said to my husband before reading your post (and inspired by posts here) let’s turn off the TV once a week and get out a game and have a game night.

It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, just find opportunities to connect with each other and share. Hug him when he doesn’t expect it. Send him a text telling him you love him. Model behaviours you would like to see him exhibiting. Break the monotony. It works. I promise you.

BarnacleBill's avatar

@deni, I seem to recall that you’ve asked this question in the last few months, which would seem to indicate that this is a real problem for you, and it’s not getting better despite working on it. Maybe you need to not live together, and focus on creating your own life and interests. It doesn’t really sound like, regardless of his feelings for you, his level of commitment to you what it needs to be, or you wouldn’t be the only one in the relationship working on this relationship problem.

While teaching middle school is a demanding job, women seem to manage to do it, get pregnant, have babies and return to work. While his commitment to teaching is commendable, his commitment to it at the expense of his personal life is not, and it sounds like he could be using work to avoid deeper commitment to the relationship.

Ladymia69's avatar

Occasional boredom is part of a long-term relationship (coming from someone who’s in an 11-year-old partnership). Only you know what you should do. You know how you feel about him. It might be hard to take an honest look at your feelings, especially if you feel like you might be ready to move on. But that is something you need to do. A break might be good, at least for a while. But again, it is up to you.

deni's avatar

Ohh. I was going through my old questions here on Fluther, and figured I’d chime in and say that 8 months later, I was feeling the same way, so I ended it. Now, looking back, I can’t believe it took me that long. The “bored” feeling was very indicative and while I tried to pretend it wasn’t there, it always was. We just weren’t right. I am so much happier.

Bellatrix's avatar

All relationships will become boring if you aren’t tending to them (learned by personal experience). You have to create excitement.

I know @LuckyGuy has suggested this (and probably others too) but you have to create excitement. Plan things to do on a regular basis (even if you or he don’t feel like going). Make memories. Do things so you have things to talk about. Organise to go to concerts, sporting events, a walk along the river, take up a hobby together. Go for a coffee and grab the paper and talk about what is happening in the world.

You have to tend your relationship and in my experience, there is usually one person making most of the plans. Left to his own devices, my husband would never think to organise for us to go anywhere. So I do it. I know what he likes. We also go away for weekends whenever we can. Share books with him. Go to the cinema. The list is endless but get out there and create things to talk about.

If you give up on this relationship, the chances are history will repeat itself next time too. Got to create the excitement @Deni. As to this happening before, what have you done to change things and create excitement? If you have really tried to do this already and it hasn’t worked, then maybe he isn’t the right man for you. If you haven’t though, perhaps you should give it a go before you throw in the towel. Good luck! Let us know how it goes.

deni's avatar

@Bellatrix We did all sorts of fun things together, concerts, and going out, and dancing and out to eat and whatever, but during all of those things I still felt “bored” even if I was excited at the time. It was just a personality clash. We even traveled together quite a bit….road trips every couple months or so for a week or two at a time, which is significant. And I was happy then, because we travel so well together, but it was still just not there.

Bellatrix's avatar

Well, sounds like you have answered your own question then. If you are doing exciting things and putting time and effort in and still feeling flat, perhaps it just isn’t right? Sad for you… but I have found when I actually reach the point where I accept something is working I can move forward on my own much more easily. I hope for a transition with as little pain as possible for you both.

Cupcake's avatar

I’m glad you’re happy, @deni.

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