What to do when your husband doesn’t come home: Ways to wrap your mind around what’s going on, and the action steps that can help during a tough situation!
What to do When Your Husband Doesn’t Come Home
After writing my post 5 Simple Ways to Make Your Husband Want to Come Home, I’ve found so many readers stumbling upon it, looking for ways to encourage their husbands to come back home when they’ve left… after an argument.
Now, since that post is really geared towards ways to show your husband “love,” to make them excited to come back home at the end of the day, I’ve wanted to create this post for those looking for help that may be going through a tough situation with their husband at this very moment.
DISCLAIMER: Although I’m no expert, and not a therapist or marriage counselor, I do love to share what I’ve learned through experience within my own marriage, and through individual AND marriage counseling. As I always recommend to those in our Creating Your Happy group, seeking counsel with a professional can be one of the most beneficial things you can do in your life. Especially when you’re going through a tough time. It can not only help YOU with YOUR feelings and emotions, it can help you gain a new perspective on what may be going on with those around you who you love.
What to do When Your Husband Doesn’t Come Home
Now when I say “What to do when your husband doesn’t come home,” I’m not talking about if he said he was on his way home from work, and it’s been an hour and still hasn’t arrived. I’m talking about the times that he is temporarily staying somewhere else, expressing that he just needs some time away, and/or you’ve noticed that he’s been avoiding coming/staying at home with you and perhaps your family.
Confront the Issue
In times of struggle, or in states of confusion, confronting the actual issue can be a hard task. Letting the emotions and feelings that we are currently experiencing, can quickly overrule any logical thinking that SHOULD be taking place. But I really, really, encourage you to tell your emotions to shut the heck up, so you can think for a minute. What could be the actual issue at hand? Was there an argument that took place? Was there a traumatic circumstance in his life lately? Has there been something “off” between you two for the last few months that has been ignored, overlooked, or avoided?
Start with confronting the issue, so action steps and discussion can start with the right foundation. Sometimes we can let our emotions get to us, and we just start spit firing what we think at each other, rather than dealing with the real issue at hand. The real issue then, may never come up, or other damage will be done before even getting to the current issue.
Give Him Time. Don’t Force Him.
Could he not want to come home because he just needs some time? Maybe he has no intention of leaving for good. It’s quite possible that he’s the type of guy that never makes time for himself, rarely hangs out with buddies, and always puts his needs on the back burner.
I know good and well the kind of mental state that I’m in if I don’t make time for myself, or have been ignoring needs that I have. So it could be possible that he just needs some time, and if that’s the case, forcing him to give up that time can just make the problem snowball for an even bigger disaster. Giving him much needed time may be something that he’s longing for.
Ego Can be a Nasty Thing
Whew. This one has been a tough one on me. Perhaps it’s because I struggled with this one so much. I don’t know about you, but I always had to “Be right.” I had to “be right” in every argument we ever had in our marriage, and I had to do/say what I could to make him realize that I was right.
It even went so deep that I wasn’t even aware of the fact that I always had to be right. It was as if he was automatically wrong with everything he said/did, and it was a challenge to make him apologize for it. The thought of “Well maybe we’re both in the wrong” never came up. It was always, “He’s wrong. I’m right. And even if he IS right, I won’t admit it, because that would be weak. It would mean losing the argument, and losing my upper hand at any future argument.” (I told you ego could be nasty. I lived it.)
When it comes to your husband being gone, and not wanting to come home, don’t let the ego win. Confront the issue at hand (Step #1), and tell your ego to shut up. If that ego blocks anything that he has to tell you, it will take THAT much longer to get where you really want to be. (Where your preferred outcome rests.)
Pick up the Phone. Don’t Text
Look, I totally get it. I’m a texter, and it’s how my husband and I communicate by phone 95% of the time. But when we’ve been in the middle of an argument, or have been through a rough patch, and have tried to have conversation… texting has caused more damage than good.
The emotion and tone are completely gone from the text. Words can be turned around in ways that you or he, never intended. (i.e. Making the existing problem an even bigger one.)
Pick up the phone and talk. If he refuses to talk, and you have time sensitive questions that need answers, keep your text short, clear as can be, and to the point. But the “blame game,” explanation, and detailed conversations are best heard instead of seen.
Tip: Before you talk on the phone, make notes of what you’d like to talk about. Usually when the conversation gets going, the emotion can be so strong that you forget important details you may want to discuss.
Don’t Assume it’s You
After reading those first few tips, I can hear some of you saying, “Crap. It was my fault. It was all me. I shouldn’t have jumped past the issue at hand. The ego stood in front of my rational thinking. I shouldn’t have texted him.” Please, please don’t take it this way.
Did you know that whatever may be keeping him away from home may be something HE’s going through? Don’t assume that it is your fault. Don’t assume that he’s not coming home because of the wife you’ve been. There may be something going on in him that he doesn’t even know how to communicate or explain to you.
Ready for this, and to think even deeper??? HE may not even be aware of what’s going on with himself, and what’s keeping him away from home. We all know the saying of what “assume” means. So assuming that it’s you can cause unnecessary wear and tear on yourself.
Look Around. What’s Not Right?
After moving past assuming that it’s you, take a look through his eyes. Is there something that’s not right at home? Has work been stressful for him? Is there something that he’s briefly mentioned that could be the cause of him not wanting to come home?
Sit down, and grab a clear picture of what’s not right. Make notes of behaviors and actions that you’ve noticed lately. Is he complacent/displaced? Is he in a crisis? Could these items have been a result of a certain activity that took place? Look at the big picture and make note of anything that sparks a question, so you can be aware of what’s actually happening.
I don’t mean question him with everything. Question everything that you’ve noticed and made note of. Look, if you’ve found your way to this article because you Googled “What to do When Your Husband Doesn’t Come Home,” I can almost bet that you love him, dearly. Right? Or you may not mind that he’s not coming home right now.
Questioning everything can that’s going on can help you have a better understanding of what may be going on. Questioning everything may even help protect him/you/your marriage early before it gets too carried away. It may help make you aware of what’s really going on, and how to move forward in the right direction.
What to Fix
I don’t think there have been truer words spoken to me that have given me a “Woah” moment like this one…
You can’t make anyone do anything, and you can’t keep them from themselves. But you can fix YOU.
Read that a couple of times to really let that sink in. I’ll admit, the first 20 times I heard my husband and therapist say this, I let it roll right off of my shoulder. It just wouldn’t “click,” for me. Then one day, it did. For YEARS, I’ve wanted to “fix” him. I wanted to prove that I was right. So I spent so much energy and emotion thinking, “If he would just ‘X,’ this would be so much better.” If ‘X’ would just happen for us, life would be so much easier.”
But the moment that I realized working on myself would produce WAY better results (and faster results), I started down that path. Why is it better and faster? Because again, you can’t make anyone do anything, and you can’t keep them from themselves.
But you can fix YOU. You can seek counsel. You can train your brain to focus on the reality of a situation, instead of letting the emotions and feelings overrule.
Were you looking for a list of physical action items that would miraculously make your husband come home? Things like: Dress sexy and make his favorite cookies?
Well I’m not saying you shouldn’t do those things. But I did want to touch on an even deeper level that may last a lot longer than cookies and a sexy outfit.
Again, I’m no therapist, but rather someone that’s learning through life as I go. After marrying my high school sweetheart, we’ve had the privilege of “growing up together,” and experiencing life’s ups and downs. With the blessing of someone telling us early on that seeking counsel can make a major impact on our lives, we’ve been able to take tough times by the reins (with guidance) and take one step at a time. We’re still learning, and will continue to learn. But I hope from our experiences, you can find a bit of encouragement in whatever it may be that you’re going through right now.