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I Am Mean to My Children’s Mother, But Don’t Know Why

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I don’t know why. We live together and have two beautiful sons,but I’m just get so angry and irritated when she’s around me. We have had a very rocky 4 years together, but lately I just can’t understand why I am so mean to her. I don’t like spending time with her, hearing her voice, etc. I love her and I see her definitely see her trying to get better, but I just can not bear it. I thought that with the constant bickering that I just lost interest, but I think its deeper than that. I don’t hate her, after yesterday and I sat and thought about her crying I just felt bad. She’s not an angel either, but I do realize that I tend to be a little cold to her. We’ve had so much fighting in the past that everything thing she does or says to me, I take as an attack and its not necessarily so. Somedays I want to be with her, some days I want her out of my life. I’ve never been professionally diagnosed with depression, but I think with me being in the Navy and always gone; I tend to take it out her whether she deserves it or not. Please help, I want to be better for our kids, but can you help identify what it is about her that just grinds my gears? or is it just me being plain old mean me?

I Am Mean to My Children’s Mother, But Don’t Know Why

Answered by on -


The relationship is not that old — 4 years — and your insight about your patterns and reactions sounds clear. This is a perfect opportunity to do some couples work and get to the bottom of it all. A couple’s therapist will help you sort through the cause of the friction and help you obtain tools to improve the connection between the two of you. The find help tab at the top of the page will point you to people in your area. Find someone who sees couples and let them help you feel better about each other.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral

I Am Mean to My Children’s Mother, But Don’t Know Why

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2018). I Am Mean to My Children’s Mother, But Don’t Know Why. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 6, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 3 Mar 2017)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
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