A Man’s Perspective of Dealing With Childlessness and Relationship Struggles

Sad couple mad at each other in their living room

The protagonist of this story is a man whose wife is struggling with infertility.

The post was published on Reddit anonymously to avoid having friends or family find out about the couple’s personal situation. For the purposes of reporting their story here, let’s call the husband, John, and his wife, Kelly.

John starts by sharing that Kelly is an only child and had a lonely childhood. To her, having children and watching them grow up together is critical in life. Seven months ago, the couple learned that Kelly is unable to have children, and since then, she has been struggling to cope.

Initially, John supported his wife by bringing her meals in bed and working from home. However, seven months later, she is still crying and spending all day watching Netflix in bed. John does all the cooking, cleaning, and laundry, but Kelly only leaves the bed to make a snack, use the bathroom, or shower.

John has suggested various options to help Kelly recover, such as therapy, adoption, moving to her parents’ city, buying a corgi puppy, or taking her on a weeklong trip, but she has rejected them all. She claims therapy is unhelpful and that the other options do not feel right for her as a replacement for having her own child.

Feeling frustrated and helpless, John had a conversation with his wife, explaining that their relationship is not sustainable if she continued to act this way and that she needed help. However, Kelly refused his suggestion and called him an a**h*le for bringing it up.

John loves his wife dearly and wants to help her, but he feels like he is running out of options. He is aware that divorce would devastate his wife, but he cannot continue living like this for much longer.

As you can expect, comments poured in from hundreds of Reddit users offering their advice.

Witchy_Woman420 provided a simple yet effective suggestion for discussing this sensitive topic as a couple. She says,

“This is a very hard situation, and I’m so sorry you’re going through this. Being an aspiring parent myself, I absolutely sympathize for you and your wife. But at the same time, she sounds severely depressed, and the fact that she refuses to seek help and snaps at you for trying to help her is unacceptable, and after so long of this, I can totally understand where you’re coming from.

“You have listed some great suggestions, and you’re doing a great job. May I suggest writing her a letter? Sometimes writing a letter is a much better option when the subject is difficult or you don’t get a positive response during a conversation. I would be 100% honest, letting her know you love and support her, but you feel the distance, and it’s taking a toll on your marriage. Let her know that your marriage will be in jeopardy if she doesn’t put in the effort to get better. I would add that you would rather get through this together and not be forced to separate, leave the ball in her court.”

So John did just that; he wrote a short letter to Kelly and opened his heart. The letter said,

“I love you more than you can imagine, and the most I want in this world is for you to be happy. I understand that, as a man, I probably have no idea how intense the pain that you are feeling is. I’m doing my best to help you, but the fact that you won’t help yourself is taking a toll on our marriage. I honestly cannot continue living like this for much longer, and our marriage is in jeopardy if you don’t make an effort to get better. However, I want to get over this bump together and start working in the right direction together. I’m ready to talk whenever you are.”

John placed the letter on top of Kelly’s laptop and went to bed, hoping that his words would somehow get through to her.

The next morning, he woke up early and made his wife her favorite breakfast. When he walked into the bedroom, he saw that she was reading the letter.

Kelly put the letter down, got out of bed, and threw herself into his arms, crying uncontrollably. John held her tight and comforted her until she calmed down. She then promised him that she would seek therapy and even suggested that they take a trip to Japan to get some fresh air.

This trip to Japan proved to be a turning point in their relationship. Kelly took the initiative in planning the trip, showing the same spark and passion that had initially drawn John to her. As they packed their bags, they both felt hopeful and excited about the future.

Relationships are not always rainbows and butterflies. They can be tough, challenging, and sometimes downright devastating. However, it’s how you navigate these rough patches that determine the strength and longevity of your relationship.

John & Kelly’s story is a reminder that even in the darkest of times, there is always hope. By communicating openly and honestly with your partner, you can overcome any obstacle and emerge stronger than ever. It’s not always easy, but it’s always worth it!

You can read the original Reddit thread here and the follow-up happy update here.

Featured Image Credit: Wavebreakmedia /Depositphotos.com.

This article originally appeared on Ash & Pri.

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Pri Kingston

Ash & Pri are the Founders of AshandPri.com and have spent the last decade building their way towards financial freedom and a lifetime of memories. Having successfully achieved their early retirement goal in under 10 years, they look forward to sharing their financial sense with like-minded people. Read more about Ash & Pri in the 'About Us' section.