July 15th, 2010


When things end...

A friend of mine (who does not read my blog but didn't mind my posting about it) is quite devastated. Things had not been going well with her marriage for a while....but the couple had drifted into a mundane routine of daily life and work, which passed for normalcy.

They both met a few years ago, and married against the wishes of both parents....and things started out very happily indeed.

But over a while, the lack of children was a factor to cope with, and one which she, at least, thought had been dealt with satifactorily. Her work has been taking her travelling frequently; his work has not been going too well, and since they seemed not to come home at the same time, both of them tended to ignore the fact that their lives were getting polarized.

A few days ago, he said he wanted to talk to her. She assumed that they would be having a discussion on how to put the magic back into their lives..and she wanted to say that they could carry on as they were, things were "comfortable" as far as she was concerned.

But what he said was that he no longer loved her. No, there is no one else (I know a fair bit about his professional life and have enough common friends who would know if there was.) It was just, he said, that whatever was between them had just...disappeared. She was forced to agree with him about this, but she said that perhaps they could work it out.

No, he said....there was just not anything to talk about, any more...he did not feel the need to share the happenings of his life with her now.

It was an honest conversation; she cannot blame him for any kind of deception; she has no "other woman" to blame. She, too, feels that the chemistry has gone...but she feels that they should work on it, having committed to marriage.

He has not said an outright "no" to her suggestion, and they are trying to work out a way to see a marriage counsellor. But she still feels that his mind seems to be made up, and nothing is going to come of the effort.

It is the end of the relationship, rather than its gradual deterioration, that has made her so unhappy, somehow. I've spent a lot of time with her, and will be spending a lot more time with her. But I can be of very limited help as she deals with the heartache, the sense of failure, and the awful guilt of "why didn't I do something about it sooner?"

The sad thing is that from talking to him, I feel that he too faces these things, though of course he talks far less about it.

I am less close to the husband than the wife, but yes, he did talk to me....and it's clear that the present scenario is unacceptable to him, and he doesn't want to drift along in this boat of habit and indifference. He wants to cut his losses as well as hers...he says he feels that both of them will be the happier for making a fresh start.

As of now, I'm just listening to her, and listening to him when he does speak to me. I too am trying to find a marriage counsellor for them.

What does a couple do when the marriage is ending, not on paper, but in the real sense, when the emotions no longer are enough to sustain it? When it's not hate or anger, but the deadly indifference, that has to be dealt with, and one partner obviously feels that the marriage cannot be revived, and the other doesn't have much hope either?

Things are further complicated by the families of these two, who are busy saying, "I told you so", with each family highlighting what they don't like about the spouse. Instead of trying to get the couple together, they are helping to pull them apart.

Two really good-hearted people, no one can classify this as "good-vs-bad"....but such sadness....thank goodness, there are no children.

I feel very sad today....when marriages or relationships start with so much happiness, why do they have to end...with this kind of dreary nothingness?