After a while, you stop asking him for dates altogether.You start to feel resentful, and think to yourself, Sound familiar?Use the classic “I feel/when you/and I need” couples-counseling construct, advises Bertolucci: “I feel [unappreciated, mad] when you [complain about dinner] and I need [you to acknowledge my effort].” If you tend to be more optimistic than your partner, it’s up to you to nurture that attitude.
If the role-modeling seems to go unnoticed, you need a frank talk with your partner.
Let her know how her negative comments make you feel, without blaming.
You remind her that you are super-stressed at work, too, that you arranged all of the kids’ extracurricular activities on top of it.
It’s common for couples to compete over who is more deserving of sympathy and support, says Kim Leatherdale, a couples counselor in Allenhurst, N. But this reverse one-upmanship causes a damaging negative cycle.
“Some families come together talking about ‘what is wrong’ and find connection and sympathy this way.” You can begin to change that habit by finding connection through good news.