Ask Asad: After 8 years of marriage, I no longer like my husband. What should I do?

Published: September 5, 2017

Dear Asad,

I am a 37-year-old married woman with two kids. Eight years ago, I was married to a man of my choice. Since then, I have been living a very happy life until recently, when I realised that something inside me has changed.

My problem is weird. For the past few weeks, I have started disliking very own my husband. 

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I feel like negative thoughts, like my husband is not good enough for me anymore, have shackled me. He is a simple graduate whereas I have done an MBA. I earn more than him and professionally have grown more as compared to him, over the years.

He has not been able to buy his own house and therefore, we are still living with his parents. This is why I have started believing that he is a loser and in the process; I have also started thinking of myself as someone with a bigger heart because I married him willingly. I have never ever shared these feelings with him because I fear they will ruin our relationship but it is becoming more and more difficult for me to suppress them at the same time.

I have been working even before I got married. But, now I need a break. I want to stop working and spend more quality time with my kids. But this is not possible because my husband doesn’t earn enough money. I have asked him several times to focus on his career more but he does not take it seriously. I know that he does not even have the capabilities to have an above-average career  — ever.

At times, I also think about leaving him but he is a good, loving father to our children. Both my husband and my kids love each other a lot.

I am in a bad mood most of the times due to my thoughts. This, in turn, spoiling my relationship with my husband and my kids. 

I do not want to ruin my relationship because of these negative thoughts. I want to be compromising and grateful for what I have and be happy about it. I have started praying regularly to help myself get rid of these negative thoughts. What else should I do?

A helpless wife

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Dear helpless wife,

First, let me commend you for being sensible enough to realise and admit that what you are thinking is negative and your thoughts are perhaps a bit ungrateful and unjust. Not all people are honest enough to understand this and even fewer are willing to work on it. It takes a person of character to do this and I really respect you for this.

Having said that, what you are feeling is completely justified and fair in the sense that your reasons for your husband to be more responsible and ambitious towards his work are because, as a wife, you want to have a home of your own and as a mother you want to spend more time with your children. Your hopes and wants are not wrong at all.

However, you are also pointing out that your husband is not capable of doing more or better than what he is currently doing. Thus, when you have understood his limitations as an individual, expecting him to perform miracles or more is only going to push you into a frustrated and stressful situation. This ultimately will cause rifts in your relationship with your husband, especially if you try to pressurise him.

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Lower your expectations and know that your husband might never be as ambitious or motivated as you are. He simply does not have the drive you have at all. So, you may as well learn to appreciate him for his strengths. Also, remember that these days it is not unusual for a woman to be the primary breadwinner of the family or to have a more prominent career than her husband.

You have mentioned that you picked your husband to be your spouse and until a few weeks back, you were quite content with him. This means that your husband has not changed, rather your views about him have changed.

Appreciate the fact that he is a good father because not all unambitious men are like that. There are many unambitious men out there whose lack of motivation and interest is not just limited to their work but towards their personal lives and familial responsibilities.

In my column, women reach out to me every week, complaining how they suffer, living with men who were womanisers or addicted to alcohol, drugs and gambling. Their husbands even verbally and physically abuse them besides being emotionally and physically aloof, uninterested in their spouses and children, stingy with money, etc. Thankfully, you are not with a husband who has any of these vices.

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If your husband is caring, loving, respectful and loyal to you and your children and gives you no reasons to suspect, I would advise you not to think of him as a loser just because he earns less money as compared to you.

As for your question about what you should do other than praying, I would suggest you get help from a life coach for a few months. This will surely help in making adjustments in your thoughts and mind about your husband.

In the end, remember one thing, a successful relationship is not about finding or being with someone who is flawless, (that is not possible) but is about being with someone whose flaws we choose to accept and live with because we want to see them around us.

I hope you are able to find contentment in your current situation.

All the best,



Asad is a counsellor, life coach, inspirational speaker and a personal-development expert. He advises on social, personal and emotional issues. You can send him your questions for this weekly column at [email protected] with “Ask Asad” mentioned in the subject line and provide as many details as possible.

Note: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Express Tribune.

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Reader Comments (10)

  • Bunny Rabbit
    Sep 5, 2017 - 3:04PM

    Its just a 7 year itch … rest . take a few steps back for a few days / months .. all will be fine . please dont think of divorce / seperation . its only for extreme circumstances. Recommend

  • Hasan
    Sep 5, 2017 - 3:07PM

    Marriage is about love, more than sex, money etc.

    Beyond this the lady can seek to do a job thereby increasing the financial worth of the family, jointly. Perhaps that would give her the freedom to do what she desires.Recommend

  • Karim Patel
    Sep 5, 2017 - 4:22PM

    Dear Asad,
    Good advice. Marriage is always about accepting minor flaws in your partner and becoming his/her better-half by correcting those flaws so that over-all life of yours and your family becomes happy.Recommend

  • Xak
    Sep 5, 2017 - 5:39PM

    and that is why folks, woman are not required to earn a livelihood for the family. I wonder how many faithful husbands have ever thought “Oh, i have grown in my career, given so many sacrifices to be what I am, earned so much, spent so much, that I think i dont deserve this fat old woman. I should marry a young 18 year old”. And one more thing, she constantly says that her husband earns lesser amount then hers, she manages to not state how much she actually “SPENDS” on her children or husband. Recommend

  • Logitech
    Sep 5, 2017 - 6:54PM

    I know my wife will read this article and then she will scroll down to the comments section. I hope she reads this post too. She will draw similarities between the “loser husband” mentioned in the article and me. The fact is that some women are “players” just like men. They get bored of their husband just like some men get bored of their wives. Once they’ve conquered a man, they wanna move on to their next conquest.

    Sadly, this lady too has become bored of her current conquest and wants something exciting: a younger and richer man. And that is what my wife wants too; a man with the wealth of Bill Gates and the body of Brad Pit. Recommend

  • Raza
    Sep 5, 2017 - 8:06PM

    Good Advice,

    These are not such serious issues, married couples should always think about their children and their children’s future before they make any irrational decision. Deciding to leave someone is easy and I would say selfish too if there are children involved.Recommend

  • Addie Khan
    Sep 5, 2017 - 8:42PM

    In my personal opinion, it is always better to sit down with your loved one & talk to them in peace. Don’t get angry during the conversation. Though it is in human nature that when you get into such kind of conversation, you outburst & then the relationship is affected. You may however reconcile later on but remember that once the words are delivered, you can’t take them back. Nobody is perfect. It is about caring each other’s feelings & letting go to the flaws of the person you love. After all you love them & choose to be your life partner at one point of time. Don’t think that you made the wrong decision of marrying the wrong person but instead just remember the good times spent with each other & the love of the person towards you.Recommend

  • gp65
    Sep 6, 2017 - 12:51AM

    @Hasan: “Beyond this the lady can seek to do a job thereby increasing the financial worth of the family, jointly. Perhaps that would give her the freedom to do what she desires.”

    The lady does do a job and apparently earns more than her husband. She however wants to quit her job and spend time with her kids and given the income of the husband is apparently not free to do so.Recommend

  • Benish
    Sep 6, 2017 - 8:54AM

    Dear friend
    This is not uncommon these days that women are earning more than their spouses. However, I know my colleagues who do not have control over their own money because there husband state that wife gives HIS time to the office, HE has the right over her money. Not only this, in-laws too demand right over her money. In our culture financial independence does not promise strong position of woman in household. These are some real facts and if our husbands acknowledge the fact that we are contributing towards home, it is a blessing. Recommend

  • Naila
    Sep 6, 2017 - 1:35PM

    Now folks, that is one good reason a women should be able to have 4 husbands at the same time as men do.Recommend

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