Wake up and start watering your own grass. Her emotional bank account is bankrupt. I suggest that you start making emotional deposits in her bank account. Yes, it's hard and yes it's not going to be fun, but I guarantee it's going to pay much bigger dividends than anything else you could ever possibly do or imagine. And let me tell you - because you have kids you are never going to be divorced from this woman. You will simply live apart and enter into a new relationship with this woman called Co-parenting - yeah, it's as fun as it sounds. You will still need to deal with and communicate with her - alot.
I applaud you for thinking about this stuff and for reaching out. That says a hell of a lot about you, so kudos to you!
You've got a lot of work to do and I suggest you get to it. I'm not saying you're responsible for her happiness but you are responsible for making deposits in her emotional bank account and for letting her know that you want to be with her. There's something called a 30-day love challenge, I'm not even sure if that's what it's called, but basically it's where you buckle down and start investing in your spouse and rediscover who they are.
I believe it was James Dobson that said:
Feelings Follow Behaviors.I couldn't agree more. I would add to that the following:
Behaviors Follow Choices.
Choices Follow Thoughts.
Feelings are the caboose of the train of your life - NOT the engine - yet so many people today think that feelings are the engine and expect feelings to pull them through everything - but they couldn't be more wrong. A train will operate with or without a caboose. Your train will operate with or without feelings - as you can already attest - so feelings are not necessary to drive your train. I'm not saying that they're not important - I'm saying that they shouldn't be the driving force behind your decisions. Most people would attest to the fact that some of the dumbest decisions have been made based on a feeling - but the consequences of those stupid decisions have been terrible.
There's never been anything that has been accomplished soley driven by feelings. I'm not saying feelings were not a part of it, but rather, that it was the choice to commit to a certain course that accomplished the goal. Your goal, any goal, can be achieved with or without feeling. I can almost guarantee you, however, that somewhere along the route you will find and link up with your caboose and your complete train will all arrive at the destination together.
What you're feeling (or not feeling) is a product of your behavior and choices up to this point. Make better choices and choose different behaviors and your feelings will follow.
I guaran-damn-tee you that she's feeling the same way. You might think "then why didn't she reach out to me?" My answer to that would be: I agree, but it's got to start somewhere and you're the one that is recognizing the problem and you're the shepherd of the home, the leader - so lead already.
There's a whole lot of pain and agony down the route of which you are inquiring - not just for you but for everyone involved - especially your children.
I'm not here to point fingers and it doesn't really matter how you got here. What matters more is what you're going to do now that you're here. What kind of man are you going to be? What kind of legacy do you want to leave?
If you need help then by all means get it. Go find a counselor for yourself. Communicate with her for God's sake. Tell her that you want to be a better you, and you want a better marriage with her, and ask her to join you in marriage counseling - not so that you can beat her up and tell her everything she's not doing, but because you want to know how you can be a better person and husband and father. If you don't think that she's got her own irritations and complaints about you than you're dead wrong. Go to marriage counseling with the idea that you want a better marriage than you have currently, AND you want it with the person that you married to AND that the change has to start with you. You go into it with this attitude you will be amazed at the changes that'll happen. It won't be overnight because change takes time and she doesn't trust you as much as you don't trust her - but it'll happen if you stay the course.
It is completely possible that this second half of your marriage can be better than the first - way better - but it won't happen through osmosis - you will have to earn it.
Surely you realize that you can't change her and that you can only change yourself. If you go into this focused on a better you and if you commit to changing yourself and investing in your marriage then I guarantee that you will be much better off and living in high cotton. Chances are she'll wake up and follow suit.
Blessings to you friend.