What To Do If Your Spouse Doesn’t Put You First

by Daphne GarrettMay 6, 2021

It’s heartbreaking when your spouse doesn’t put you first, whether it’s the wife who seems to show signs of cheating or the husband who doesn’t care about how you feel.

The pain, frustration, and loneliness make it even harder for us.

However, is there any way to fix it? What can you do when you’re kicked to the curb by your partner.

This can create arguments, a variety of trust issues, and other problems that can create a lot of trouble down the line.

Here, we’ll go over the best things to do when your spouse doesn’t put you first and what you can do to help with these feelings that are bothering you.

Recognize Your Feelings

The feeling of inadequacy is oftentimes not easy to handle.

Instead of taking it out on the other person by criticizing them, understand that you’re acting this way because you feel inadequate.

Recognize these feelings of inadequacy. That way, you’re not feeling the anger rumble within you that only serves to feed your insecurity.

If you say that you miss spending time with them or that you’re feeling lonely, it can help you recognize exactly what the problem is.

Sometimes, you might feel like you’re upset simply because you don’t understand what’s going on. For example, maybe you feel lonely every time they go out with their friends.

Or you feel lonely because they don’t seem to care about spending time with you as much as they do with their friends.

Instead of thinking, they don’t immediately care. Take a moment to recognize exactly what the feelings you’re dealing with are.

That way, when it’s time to communicate them, you can, of course, properly understand what’s going on inside.

If you’re worried about voicing this, remember they’re your partner. If you feel you can’t communicate something, perhaps there’s a deeper issue.

Properly communicating with your partner allows for both of you to figure out what’s going on.

Another thing is if you feel unwanted, it might be a sign of a lacking relationship. You may feel like there’s something off, or you’re drifting apart.

If that’s the case, you must identify what’s missing.

Do You Have Similar Hobbies?

Another thing is to look at what you can do together.

Maybe you prefer hiking and your spouse doesn’t.

Perhaps the two of you are drifting apart because of differences and aspirations.

It’s important to look at what both of you want to do together. You should do things that you both enjoy.

Also, look and see if both of you are prioritizing aspects outside of the relationship.

For example, if you’re focusing more on work than spending time with your partner, you need to properly re-align those values so that there is a balance there.

Work on this together.

You may come to realize that the both of you will be happier for it.

And if you notice your spouse is starting to spend time doing things alone that you used to do together? That’s a red flag for different reasons.

It means the two of you are not prioritizing one another, which creates a huge issue down the line.

Again, look at what both of you can do together, align those values, and work on it.

If you’re struggling, consider the following:

  • Sitting down and asking what you can do together.
  • Talk about values and aspirations.
  • If they’re not aligned, you need to figure out what you can do to align them.

If your spouse doesn’t want to discuss this, there’s a deeper issue going on here.

Work On Yourself

If you feel like your partner doesn’t care about you, then you need to start working on yourself. If you aren’t prioritizing yourself first, you’re never going to be happy.

Relationships take two people but also remember you don’t need someone to be happy.

If you’re only focusing on the other person and not yourself, this can negatively impact your happiness in the future. Remember, you don’t have to take on your partner’s identity just because you’re together.

If you have aspirations, work on them.

If you have certain problems that you haven’t worked on yourself, work on them.

Working on yourself builds development and happiness, and by working on yourself, you will feel happiness.

How can you work on yourself?

Try doing the following:

  1. Think of two things you’ve wanted to do. Write them down.
  2. Then think of two faults that you have that are holding you back. Write them down.
  3. From there, you can put together a series of steps to figure out how to accomplish all of this.
  4. Then, make a plan and work on them.

If you want to be the best person you can be, start here.

If your partner doesn’t want to talk about it, you might need to seek couples therapy to discuss the problems in your marriage. But that doesn’t mean you can’t work on being a better person in the meantime.

Many couples realize when they start to do this, things just magically get better, and they’re able to work everything out with their spouse. 

Working on yourself is the first step to improving your relationship. If nothing else gets better, you have yourself to be proud of.

And nobody can take that away from you.

Fix Communication Issues

Communication is a big part of relationships and marriage.

If they’re not putting you first, you need to call them out on it and mention it.

Sometimes people are oblivious to how they’re acting. They might not even realize they’re ignoring you until you bring it up.

But by doing so, you’ll give your marriage a chance to work itself out.

When you do this, give your spouse the full attention they deserve. Remember, the goal is connection and understanding.

Sitting down and asking them what’s wrong helps in many cases.  This can accompany adult conversation and let them know that they’ve heard as well.

Sometimes, the communication issues don’t get resolved until both of you sit down and talk about it. But remember, you need to pay attention to their problems as well.

Some people get distant when there is a personal issue they’re trying to resolve.

If that’s the case, you need to talk to them and give them some reassurance that you care about them by giving them attention and understanding what’s going on.

Sometimes, that reassurance is exactly what they need.

Your spouse has their own battles to face. If they’re putting other priorities before you, that could be upsetting, but understanding what your spouse is feeling is important.

But remember, if none of the above work, you can always resort to therapy.

Therapy may allow you to fix these communication issues productively and healthily.

You can learn more about it here.

If they’re doing this because of the stress of raising kids, then you need to work on putting aside time to be together. If it’s because of work, help them get a better handle on their schedule.

A little bit of communication goes a long way, so remember that when talking to your partner.

If They Don’t Put You First, They Never Will.

Finally, you must understand that if they don’t attempt to put you first, then they never will.

There might be signs of priorities changing. In some cases, you might have thought they cared beforehand, but they didn’t.

If they still don’t care even after discussing this with them, then you need to look at seeing what’s really going on, whether it’s cheating or loss of attraction.

Most partners don’t just ignore you or put you at the bottom of their priority list without reason. However, if you feel neglected, you must speak your mind on this and talk to your partner about what you can do.

Remember, your partner is your rock. They’re supposed to be there for you. So you must understand that if they’re not showing you attention, that’s a problem.

Worst case scenario is you might need to end this and move on.

Both of you are in this together, so you need to give them some attention and respect as well.

If they’re not giving it to you even after you’ve talked to them and tried to work it out, then it might be a sign of a bigger issue. It’s important to consider those possibilities.

Recommended: Can Therapy Help Save Your Relationship?

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