I am 7 months pregnant and my husband and I have both been excited over the upcoming addition to our family. In the past couple of weeks, my husband has been very distant and claims that he is just worried about the baby coming and how it will change ‘his ‘life.After a heated conversation, he also told me that he is questioning our relationship and future, but says that there is no way that he could make it on his own without me because of all his debts.After more conversation, he tells me that this has nothing to do with me. Obviousily it does, but I don’t know the right way to approach it and handle it. He says he just needs some time to work through his feelings.Meanwhile, I am suffering emotionally and physically. I can’t afford to put my baby’s health in jeopardy because I am worried over my marriage.Please help me make him understand and open the lines of communication.
I am sorry that your husband has thrown you this curve ball. How painful.t’s not clear what you want him to understand. The effect that he is having on you? I assume that you have already told him how you feel. What ever else you want him to understand, you need to identify what that is and then tell him directly.You also said that you want to help him to communicate openly with you. The only problem is that when he speaks about his mixed feelings, you feel ripped up. Are you sure that you want him to talk openly with you? Even if you hear that he has mixed feelings about remaining in the relationship?If you truly want to open the lines of communication, then you could say to him, ‘I am hearing a lot of mixed messages from you. On the one hand you are saying that you are staying because the debts prevent you from leaving. Then, on the other hand you are saying that this crisis isn’t about me. . . I think we need to understand more about how the upcoming birth of our child has set you off. Can you put into words what you are worried about?’In future talks you might explain to him that wanting to exit the relationship is a sign that he wants to escape feelings that he can’t stand. The impulse to run and escape is a classic defense mechanism. Get him to talk about what feelings he wants to escape. Is he feeling worried about his ability to be a good father? Is he worried that he is going to lose you?If he has abandonment issues, for example if he felt that his mother abandoned him when another sibling was born, then these fears could be surfacing now. If he was left by his mother or father, again, he could be afraid of losing you and your attention when the baby comes. Just keep reminding him that the birth of a child often triggers unfinished childhood business in the parents.Get him to reflect back on his past and discuss how the impending birth could be setting off old wounds. So long as he’s exploring and talking, you should be able to work this out. Remind him that he cannot go into action (leave, separate) until he has clarified all the issues.you need, help, then go to couples therapy together. Please let me know how you both make out.