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Counseling Center of Cherry Creek

“I think I married the wrong person. Now what?”

April 28, 2014
Posted By: Margie Kaems, MSW, LCSW

Woman in Red Shirt | Therapist in Denver COIt is pretty common in my line of work to run across folks who simply think that they have married the wrong person. These people often describe themselves as being chosen rather than choosing.

  • Symptoms of being chosen rather than choosing include:
  • lack of desire
  • boredom
  • a feeling of being mismatched from the beginning with your spouse
  • memories on your wedding day of thinking, “Why am I doing this?”
  • tendencies to people please or do what is expected of you
  • feeling more like friends than lovers…and not really wanting to be lovers

What do you do when you find yourself in this situation and you have children, a mortgage, and lives fully entwined? 

Start by asking yourself a few tough questions:

1) What do you get from believing that you married the wrong person? 

Do you get to feel disempowered? Sorry for yourself? Do you get to pine for the one who got away? Do you get to remain emotionally distant from your spouse and make him/her the bad guy? Do you get to feel bad or wrong about who you are? Do you get to feel like the victim?

These may seem like insensitive questions but sometimes the tough questions are the ones that will bring you to your knees to find real answers. And yes, I do mean that you “get to feel like a victim”. Many people prefer to feel like a victim than realize the power that they have in their lives, take accountability, and make tough decisions. Paying attention to what you “get” out of your actions will teach you a lot about yourself.

2) Are there other times in your life when you have felt these or similar feelings?

It is common to find themes that can run through many years or decades of your life. Did you “just fall in” to a career, college, or group of friends? Are there other places in your life where you feel disempowered, trapped, or like you are not living authentically? These themes can teach you about parts of yourself so becoming aware of your patterns can be tremendously empowering in order to change the course of your future. 

3) How do you hold back in your marriage because you believe your spouse is not the “right” person?

Do you find yourself thinking, “I could be a much better spouse with someone else”? Sure if you were married to someone else, it would be a different relationship but different does not always mean better.

People often don’t want to work on changing until or unless their partner changes. Holding back who you really are in your marriage does not serve yourself or your partner. Even if you decide to leave your relationship, practicing being your authentic self during the process strengthens parts of who you are and creates new patterns of change and grow.

4) Are you ready, right now, to show up fully?

If, in fact, you feel that you have “chosen the wrong person”, how does that impact how you behave in the relationship. Where might you show up more authentically in this moment, right now, in order to experience choosing your life now. This does not necessarily mean showing up by going home and asking for a divorce…it means taking the steps that are close into yourself first:

  • Speaking your thoughts and feelings in a compassionate and connecting way. 
  • Listening to your spouse and hearing her feelings or thoughts. 
  • Being in connection with one another even if you decide that this relationship is over.

If you want to be in your relationship in a radically different way, call today and one of our therapists will help guide you to that new relationship vision. 720.457.3342 or book online here.

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