No you are not being greedy and your sadness is your indicator that needs to be listened to. God has made us multi-dimensional as human beings, made in his image. We are designed to operate not only in the physical realm but also the emotional, spiritual and social. When any of these aspects of who we are become neglected individually or in a relationship, the fullness of who we were designed to be shows signs of dis-ease. When any relationship is not holistic it creates an inner sadness as we long to be whole and complete the picture.

It is wonderful that you can enjoy your family life together and this is a great thing to share. Don’t discount this, rather make the most of what it gives you together. Shared history, shared angst, shared laughs are all the gifts of family life that deepen the bond between all those involved. I wonder if you can actually explore more things that you enjoy together with your family, in a way that adds to your friendship as a married couple too?

But you must also take a step back from your family for your own relational health, and maybe also for theirs. You may have over invested in family as your only mutual focus and given up on things that are just about the two of you. This is so easy to do as family life is so demanding and we learn to sacrifice ourselves as parents, thinking this is the right thing to do. Years of disinvestment can leave us in the same physical space but relationally isolated from each other. The exciting thing is that at this later stage of your life you now have plenty to learn and discover about each other! It is easy to become over familiar in marriage and presume we know the other person just because we know all their outward habits, but these disguise the soul. The adventure of dating is to discover a new soul without the presumptions of familiarity. In facing up to your loss of shared areas of enjoyment, maybe you could come to this old friendship afresh and seek to find joy in the other person again.

You may need to choose to change some of the lenses through which you judge each other in order to do this! This will involve letting go of some of your individual entrenchments in your own ways and opening them up to a mutual space rather than an individualistic one. Try taking it in turns to book once a week something that you can do together, be that going to a show, for a walk, sharing a meal, doing an evening class together: step out into some new ideas.

Making time for shared interests may involve both of you letting go of some of the things you have filled your time with to date in order to make space for each other. You are not going to get the rewards without the investment, so be prepared to pay the price for this.

At the same time it will be a key to share from the heart what your hopes and expectations are at this stage in marriage, as well as what your longings and disappointments revolve around. Building life into this lost area of your marriage is going to take mutual effort and understanding as to the importance and meaning of this.

Take some time to reflect together on what has happened over the years to create the dynamics that you are now facing. You may well find that your partner has an entirely different take on your relationship and hearing both of your perceptions will give you important insights as to what needs to be given attention. You may find it would help to refresh your marriage to go on a marriage enrichment course such as The Marriage Course by HTB which is run in many locations all over the UK - or courses run by Care for the Family or Christian Marriage Ministries.

A marriage is never too old to be refreshed. Don’t give up and disinvest as you will reap what you sow. Be courageous in your conversations, be committed in your openness to change and you will gradually reap your reward.