My Spouse Lies Or Comes Home Late

Unfortunately, we get the love we think we deserve. So start by asking yourself why you are putting up with disrespectful behavior from your spouse. It's time for some soul-searching, communicating and setting boundaries. First, identify how you feel when your spouse lies about their whereabouts or is always late. Be specific, pick at least three feelings from the Feeling Wheel. Take time to describe the relationship you would like to have. What is missing from your current relationship that is on your list? Identify steps you could take to improve your relationship and things you would like your spouse to improve in your relationship. What changes might you need to make if your spouse does not change his/her behavior? What are your biggest fears?

Now that you have your feelings and thoughts organized, it is time to talk to your spouse. Pick a time when you are both calm, sober, and not too stressed to talk. A classic go-to of Communication 101 is using the format "when you do X, I feel Y." For example: “When you lie about where you were, I feel betrayed.” Try this on as you begin talking to your spouse about how their actions are affecting you. Use this format in the positive, too. For example: “When you come home at the time you promised, I feel respected.”

Next be ready to discuss your boundaries. Tell your spouse how you would like to be treated in your relationship. Respect, honesty, and time together are all reasonable requests. Be prepared to be specific about how your spouse can show you they respect you, how they can be honest with you, and how you would like to spend time together. You can also set consequences if the lying continues. The suggested format for this communication is: "If you continue doing X, then Y will happen."


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