Is your relationship causing you stress?
Are you feeling lonely, helpless, indecisive?
You are not alone!
In a first of its kind initiative to help Rediff readers, mind/life coach, NLP trainer and mental health guru Anu Krishna wants you to talk about your problems.
Every week, Anu will answer your queries, address your concerns and offer expert advice on how you can take control of your life.
In one of her self-help series Anu spoke about why couples are fighting more in the lockdown, and offered advice on how to have a healthy conversation.
Dear readers, if you have a question for Anu, please e-mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org (Subject: Ask ANU) for her advice.
Meanwhile, here's the unedited excerpt from Anu's offline session with readers:
DS: Ma'am, I am a 42 old male educationist by profession, a non-smoker and non-alcoholic.
I got married late at 40 through a matrimonial site after almost one year of chatting with a girl from another district aged 33 who otherwise is sweet and is 2nd among four sisters.
Before marriage they told me that after marriage she would get transferred from her government teaching job in her own locality to my home district.
But after marriage she stays in her own house, comes once a week on Saturday and leaves by Monday morning.
Worse, every day her sister calls up more than six times and spend 15 to 40 minutes over phone.
I unconsciously feel cheated being as single as before. She has clearly told she won't leave her job nor can do anything about transfer.
My parents' repeated requests to her father (an education officer) has fallen into deaf years.
Now without physical and emotional intimacy I get provoked. Arguing for every word she says makes matters worse.
Recently in anger I threw her phone away and now things are out of control.
Her younger sister warning me has made things worse.
Ma'am either I will commit suicide or go mad.
ANU: Dear DS, firstly, suicide is never an option.
So there is no necessity to think of it as challenges are a part of everyone’s lives and how we respond to these challenges define our entire lives.
Why does she choose to stay at her parents’ place?
I don’t see the reason in your write-up. Did the two of you have an argument?
Why is it that her parents don’t talk to her about settling down in a married life?
Sometimes, it need not be one reason but many to break down a marriage.
It mostly starts with assumptions, and we start to believe that this is true.
Her sister calling her 6 times in a day is just something that you choose to be irritated with which maybe in a happy marriage you might have made fun of.
Right now, every single thing associated with her, is what you choose to think of as a reason for the way the marriage is.
It takes two to make a marriage. I would like you to ask yourself: Have I in anyway contributed even a little to create this situation?
What this does is, helps you focus on what you can also change and that may help her understand you better and possibly make room for a discussion between the two of you.
Also, at 33, she possibly has been leading a very independent life and suddenly expecting her to change and settle into a marriage might take a while.
Be loving and caring without expecting and things can start to change.
But I know that she refuses to stay with you but when she does over the weekend, instead of arguing, simply unconditionally love her without asking for anything in return.
Love breaks down a lot of anger, resentment, and any assumptions that she maybe carrying.
Maybe talking to her sister gives her some sense of comfort and by pointing that out, might anger your wife and her sister which is what has happened.
Try something else; simply love as hard as this maybe.
You have married at an age where both of you have led a fairly independent life and to bring both your lives together, some amount of work has to go in.
If this fails, ask an older member of your family to step in and talk to her parents. Seek help when you think this is required.
Create a happy life.
VZ: Hi Anu, my wife is very short tempered and impatient.
She regularly shouts at me, when one of the utensils is not washed properly or when I buy breakfast she doesn't like or on rare occasions when I forget to take garbage out.
Sometimes she just goes off shouting and I don’t even know the reason.
Communication is key here, but the thing here is she again starts shouting, simply refusing to listen to reason or logic.
There is no patient talk possible. And I have come to realize that she does this, because she simply can. No other reason.
Thankfully, she is all jovial and smiling while interacting with my friends or their wives.
Friends thus, have a hard time believing that my wife can be short tempered.
Sex life is non-existent because she is always angry about something.
On the rare occasion, she simply lies around while I have the sex. She simply has no interest in sex.
All I want is a non-angry household. She will also not join me to go to a counselor.
I can't afford a divorce because courts rule in favour of the wife and she will get daughter's custody. Not to mention I cannot afford any alimony.
All I want is a non-angry, happy household.
ANU: Dear VZ Is your wife always angry? By asking for a non-angry household, do you mean that there isn’t a single moment of peace at home?
It sounds unlikely but I understand that when you choose to see more of what you don’t like, that starts to become bigger.
Also, is it possible for you not to label your wife as short-tempered? Because this is what you will convey to her when in the moment of irritation.
It’s just that’s she is going through a situation which perhaps has gone on for a while now.
Now getting back to the environment at home, has you wife always displayed this kind of behaviour at home or has this been a recent occurrence or has something triggered it?
Sometimes, a massive change within the body due to age can cause it or simply put even excess house work due to the pandemic situation can result in a change in temper.
Can you make an effort to communicate with her and talk to her rather than expect her to change?
Communicate in love and care and support.
State what you feel bothered by and how this is impacting your daughter.
Appeal to her in love and once she realises that you are on her side, she might have a change in perspective and at least be willing to listen to you.
Also, when she has an outburst, do make sure that you don’t react as much as you want to.
Go silent (practice it) and let her release her emotions. Sooner than later when she sees no reactions from you, she might calm down as well.
I realise it might be hard to deal with this at this very moment, but as you are reading this, I would also urge you to focus on the moments of peace with your daughter.
Surely when she smiles at you, you do feel great, right?
Households are not angry and non-angry; people choose to feel angry or happy.
Why not start to focus on why you and your wife married and how a beautiful daughter came through both of you and that your wife must be going through something right now and that you can be a huge support for her?
Create a beautiful life!
A: I need some help regarding my married life.
My wife had an affair in Jan 2018 with my brother's brother-in-law. In May-2018 I came to know about this.
From that day to till date she has kept me away from her.
From last year she is talking properly but also avoiding me. She doesn't like my touch. We haven't have sex from 2018 till date.
Please let me know what I should do.
ANU: Dear A, it's time to reevaluate your marriage and where it is headed.
Sit down as a couple and if it is with a marriage counsellor, it might help as you can have an independent view of things.
Wouldn’t you want to know if your wife wants to continue in this marriage or not?
It’s like closing your eyes and pretending not to look at the elephant in the room.
Why she keeps away from you and why she doesn’t want intimacy in the marriage and whether she wants to be married to you -- these questions need to be answered, so that both of you as mature adults can prioritise what’s important and either work together for the marriage or move on with your lives going separate.
Whatever that emerges out of it needs communication to begin with right this very moment.
Be at peace!
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