Dear Dr. Donna,
My wife and I have been together for almost 10 years. Lately it seems that she doesn't hear me when I speak, and we just don't seem to connect. Please don't suggest counseling because she is not interested in seeking outside help.
I wish I had a referee, because sometimes she can make statements that are completely absurd, and I'm lost for words to respond.
I realize that I can't even identify my own emotions anymore. What do you do when the person you love with all your heart is making your life miserable?
I am coming to the realization that if I can't save her life, I will have to save my own by walking away. If you have any suggestions for me, please let me know. I really want to make this work.
Your words near the end of your letter are very astute. If your relationship has been built on the notion of your being her savior, it is no wonder that you are feeling so lost. I think it is a wonderful sign to realize that you cannot save someone else's life.
I believe that realization can help you find yourself. You say you don't recognize your own emotions anymore. I say, go to counseling for yourself. Find out who you are, what you feel, and what you need. Then you will know what to say to your wife.
Dr. Donna conducts a Com-passionate Communication Practice group from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. the second and fourth Monday of each month at 107 West Wade, No. 2. For more information, call 474-4654.