By James Michael Sama

Are you not being appreciated in your marriage? My video feature with Your Tango explains how to fix that.


James writes, “I’ve been speaking to a lot of you lately who left long-term relationships because your significant other wasn’t giving you what you needed — mentally and emotionally.

They weren’t putting in the effort, listening, or paying attention; they were basically just coasting along because they’d already “gotten” you, and for some reason didn’t understand that they’d need the same effort to keep you.

Perhaps you can relate to the feeling of being anchored down by someone who isn’t willing to put the same effort into a relationship or themselves as you are.

This is the “ball and chain” feeling of pulling someone along, who either flat-out refuses to learn and grow or simply doesn’t have any interest in it when you do.

If you’re not being appreciated in your marriage, ask yourself this question: Why? If you’ve felt this, I’m sorry. I’m sorry you committed your time, energy, and effort to someone who wouldn’t give you the same in return.

I’m sorry you had to learn the hard way that being in the wrong relationship will make you feel more alone than being single does. I’m sorry you gave that person a piece of your life that you can never get back.

But don’t get too down on yourself, because in reality, you did get something in return. You got perspective. You gained a greater ability to recognize the qualities you do and don’t want in a future teammate. You gained the ability to draw your line and say, “I will no longer accept this in my life.” Only the person who didn’t give you what you needed can provide you with that ability. It’s a silver lining.

Of course, nobody is perfect and we can’t expect anyone to know our wants and needs without us communicating with them. But that’s what relationships are about: communication. The ability not only to speak, but to listen, absorb, and most of all, act on what we have learned.

Even worse than passive apathy is someone who actually makes you feel bad about yourself.”

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