15 Devastating Signs A Man Is Unhappy In His Marriage

In an ideal world, every marriage would stand the test of life.

But in reality, about 50% of couples opt to go their separate ways.

Sometimes, people grow apart, and the split is mutual and amicable.

Other times, only one person becomes disillusioned with the partnership.

Interestingly, women are more likely to file for divorce.

But today, we're looking at things from the other side and discussing how to tell when a husband is not happy in a relationship.

15 Devastating Signs A Man Is Unhappy In His Marriage 

Are you frequently wondering: Is my husband unhappy? 

man is turned away from woman signs a man is unhappy in his marriage

Every relationship is different, but several clues commonly pop up when a man is disenchanted with a marriage. 

Let's take a look. 

1. He No Longer Wants To Make Long-Term Plans

Planning doesn't stop once you say, “I do.” If anything, it becomes more intense. Healthy couples set mutual goals and work toward them together. Will you have kids? If so, how will you raise them? What about professional goals? Health aims? Retirement plans?

In a way, marriage is a never-ending exercise of planning. 

So if your husband no longer seems interested in thinking or talking about the future, he may be “checked out” of the relationship.

2. Your Conversations Have Become Rote and Unemotional

You and your husband shared a strong emotional bond when the relationship was in its prime. You spent nights talking into the wee hours of the morning, supported each other's aspirations, and loved sharing your opinions with one another freely.

But lately, the conversations have waned. These days, your discussions are shallow and often contentious. It's been months since you sat down and had a fulfilling chat. 

While it's true that relationships change and not every day must be filled with intense expressions of affection, it's not a good sign if all deep conversations have stopped. 

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3. You Don't Hang Out Much Anymore

In addition to your conversations slowing to a snail's pace, you've also stopped hanging out together. Forget about “date nights.” The two of you no longer even spend time together at night. After work, you retreat to different rooms and don't even enjoy watching shows or movies together anymore. 

The sizzle may indeed fade the longer you're with someone. It's normal for familiarity and mutual respect to replace lust as you grow closer, which is good! Mature partnerships are about more than just sex. But if the situation reaches a point where you feel like you're antagonistic roommates, something is likely off.

4. Your Sex Life Has Plummeted

Although sex isn't the end-all-be-all of a solid and mature romantic relationship, it is a factor. When one party is dissatisfied with the amount of intimacy, the situation can quickly grow fraught. In worst-case scenarios, the wanting party may begin to feel like the other doesn't love them anymore — and to be honest, that may be the case. 

Don't worry too much about this clue, however, if both you and your spouse are fine with the amount of sex you're having. Hey, not everyone has a high libido. Moreover, the older we get, the less sex we tend to have. That's not to say seniors don't engage in intimacy. The opposite is often true. All we're saying is that some people aren't as focused on it as others.   


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5. He's Newly Obsessed With Social Media

For years, your husband couldn't be bothered with Facebook, Instagram, and other social media accounts. But these days, he's behaving like a 14-year-old. When he's not working, he's glued to his phone, computer, or tablet.

He may even become secretive about it — or set up secondary accounts you know nothing about. So search for his name on various platforms if you feel like something is off. 

6. He Becomes Obsessed With a New Hobby

Suddenly, your husband has a new hobby that he's thrown himself into. More than that, he doesn't seem at all interested in sharing it with you on any level.

Of course it's fine for people to develop new passions. That's part of growth! But it's perfectly normal to raise an eyebrow when they aren't interested in talking to you about it or including you in any way. 

7. His Hygiene Takes a Hit

In the good old days, your man cared about his appearance, and his hygiene was “on point.” But lately, he dresses like a slob and doesn't seem concerned about staying neat and tidy.

Note, however, that a decline in grooming can also be a sign of depression that may not be related to wanting out of a marriage. So if this is the only sign, you and your husband may want to pursue counseling for him alone. 

8. He's Never Home Anymore

Lately, you feel like you're living with a platonic roommate because your husband is never home. Does that sound familiar? 

Men who are unhappy in their marriage tend to spend a lot of time outside the home. Maybe they go out for drinks with friends every day after work and don't come home until well after dinner. Or perhaps they start to stay at work for hours when there's no need. When things get terrible, he may even begin spending nights at the homes of family members and friends.

9. He's Constantly Irritated and Aggressive

When things were going well, your husband let the small stuff slide. You both accepted each other's faults and acknowledged your own. 

woman sad sitting on sofa man leaving with suitcase signs a man is unhappy in his marriage

But these days, he's constantly nitpicking everything you do. He throws negativity in your face when you don't behave exactly like he wants. At times, he makes you feel like you cannot do anything right! His behavior is negatively impacting your mental health. More than that, he doesn't seem to think he's doing anything wrong. 

10. He's Increasingly Illogical

Is your husband becoming increasingly illogical? Is he making irrational financial decisions that have harmful effects on your livelihood? Or maybe he's opting to behave recklessly and putting his life in danger, regardless of how it may affect you or any children.

When men are unhappy in a marriage, they want to break free, and behaving without concern about how their actions impact their families is a common tactic used to express dissatisfaction. Instead of openly talking about their feelings, they act out like teenagers testing boundaries.  

11. You Rarely Eat Together Anymore

When both you and your husband were happily married, you tended to have as many meals together as possible. But now, you mostly eat alone — even when you're both home. He may grab something and take it into his den, or you eat in front of the television while he chows down in the kitchen.

Sure, sometimes couples need some alone time and may opt to have the occasional meal alone. And, of course, people sometimes go out to eat with friends and family without their spouses. But if it's become the norm, there's a good chance your union isn't in a healthy place.

12. He Changes His Look Drastically

There's nothing inherently wrong with giving oneself a “glow-up” — at any age. But it may be a red flag that your husband is unhappy in the marriage if he doesn't include you in the process and the change has come apropos of nothing else. 

Try not to jump to conclusions, though. If your husband has started working out for physical or mental health reasons, you probably have nothing to worry about. But if the aesthetic change is coupled with other red flags, it may be time to have a serious talk. 

13. His Body Language Screams, “Give Me Space!”

You go to cuddle, and he pushes you away. When you try to hold his hand, he yanks it. In the past, he was openly affectionate. But lately, he's behaving like you're in kindergarten, and you have the cooties!

Granted, few people want their partners hanging on them 24-7. Everyone needs their personal space at times. But something may be amiss if your husband has been treating you like you have leprosy.  

14. He's Constantly Talking About Friends Who Are Separating

Let's be honest: Couples gossip about other couples from time to time. While it's probably not the best thing, it's a way to bond and check in on your relationship. 

But talking about other couples becomes something different when a) you're not doing it together, and b) one of you constantly brings up people getting divorced and seems envious about it. 

So if your husband constantly chats about friends who are opting to end their marriages in a longing way, it may be a sign that he wants to do the same. 

15. He Mopes Around

Few things are more irritating than a spouse who perpetually mopes around the house, and the behavior could signal that they want out. 

Again, everyone has their days, and sometimes, people go through bouts of depression that cause morose behavior. But if it has been going on for months, and nothing else has changed, it may be a red flag. 

Why Do Guys Stay in Unhappy Relationships?

Why do men stay in unfulfilling marriages? Reasons abound, and it's much more common than many people realize. According to statistics, only 17% of married people are genuinely happy.

So why do people stay? There is a cluster of standard reasons. Let's take a look.

couple sitting on sofa in therapy Signs A Man Is Unhappy In His Marriage
  • Children: Many people opt to withstand unhappy unions for the kids' sake. 
  • Fear of Being Alone: The longer people have been together, the harder it may become to break up because people get used to being in a couple, even if it's not ideal. Moreover, the thought of being alone feels too crushing to break up.
  • Fear of Conflict: Even though a relationship may not be satisfying, many men stay put because the specter of conflict feels more ominous. 
  • Lack of Desire To Rejoin the Dating Pool: Dating is difficult! Many people trudge their way through a challenging relationship instead of getting back out there. 
  • Financial Reasons: Money is one of the main reasons people opt to stay coupled up, especially if children are involved.

What to Do if Your Husband Is Unhappy in Your Marriage 

Unfortunately, your husband fits several of the red flags above, and you're fairly certain he's unhappy in the marriage. So now what? How can you rectify the situation and get things back on track? Here are a few ideas.

1. Confront the Issue Head-On

The first thing to do is confront the issue directly. Don't spring it on him out of the blue, though. Let your husband know that you want to have a serious talk, and then set a time that works well for both of you. 

If there's no chance of abuse, do it at home. Strangers don't need to witness your discussion, as there's a solid chance things may get emotional. 

Encouragingly, however, sometimes all it takes to right the ship is a challenging but productive conversation.

2. Try Couples Therapy

Couples counseling can be exceptionally helpful if both parties are willing to take it seriously. A therapist is objective and can help you pinpoint problematic patterns and give you tools to find your way back to each other. Typically, the therapist will suggest coming together and separately to better understand the situation.

3. Work on Yourselves

It may sound counterproductive, but working on yourselves instead of hyper-focusing on the relationship may be exactly what the doctor ordered. As they say: It's difficult to love someone else if you don't love yourself. And a huge part of self-love is knowing who you are — faults and weaknesses — and having hobbies and interests you're passionate about.

4. Decide if the Marriage Is Worth Salvaging

If the situation has reached dire straits, it may be time to consider whether the marriage is worth saving. Sometimes, it's best to cut your losses, remember the good times, and part ways while wishing each other well. 

5. Do a Trial Separation

Trial separations may seem scary and final at first. But for many couples, it's the thing that makes them realize what they have and, therefore, more willing to fight for it. So do a trial separation.

If you go this route, ensure you set the ground rules beforehand. How long will it be? Will you be allowed to date other people? What about intimacy with others? Is it off-limits or allowed? Will you remain in the same house, or will one of you move out? Finances? Review every last detail so there's no confusion.

Final Thoughts

Happily ever after is a fairy tale. Marriage is hard work that requires compromise and effort. Sometimes, problems will seem insurmountable, but you can find your way back if you both genuinely want it. Other times, relationships don't work out — and that's okay. 

When working through issues, aim to be objective, honest, and authentic, and let compassion guide your path. If you do all that, things will work out exactly as they're meant to.