Q: I married my husband purely for pragmatic reasons. As a single mom, I believed he’d make a great father to my child. Now I realize that I never really had romantic feelings for him. Is there hope for our relationship?
Jim: The short answer to your question is yes. Why?
Two reasons: First, in cultures where marriages are arranged, we know that couples often learn to love one another deeply, even though their relationships weren’t originally based on romantic feelings.
This isn’t to say that feelings have no place in marriage.
They absolutely do. But in this case, the feelings generally follow in the wake of intentional, deliberate actions, growing out of commitment, perseverance and hard work. In your situation, there’s even more reason for hope.
Though you’re not sure how to make it happen, you want to fall in love with your husband — otherwise, you wouldn’t have asked your question. To put it another way, you’re dissatisfied with the status quo and willing to make a change. In a very real sense, then, you’ve already taken an important step in the right direction. You can build on this foundation by asking yourself what it was that first attracted you to your husband.
At some level, the two of you felt an emotional connection and there was something that led you to believe that life with him would be better than life without him.
That spark may have diminished over time, but it can still be found and fanned into a flame if you’re willing to put forth the effort.
A resource that may help is Emerson Eggerichs’ book and CD series Love and Respect.
Our Focus counselors are also available for a free consultation and would love to speak with you. They can be reached at 855-771-HELP (4357).
Jim Daly is a husband and father, an author, and president of Focus on the Family and host of the Focus on the Family radio program. Catch up with him at www.jimdalyblog.com or at www.facebook.com/DalyFocus.