Originally Posted by BALANCE
I appreciate the encouragement.
What you described there is what I am trying to work towards. That has been my strategy. We are both good people, we both love each other we are just missing opportunities to meet each others needs. We both used control and manipulation to try and get our needs met but now I want us just to be open about them.
The struggle for me is when I lay out my needs clearly, i.e. sex. And she flat out refuses. And I have done it almost exactly like your wife described. I said, "for me to feel emotionally connected and loved I need to have sex." She said it wasn't a real need and she couldn't do it. So then what do I do? Just try and meet her needs as best I can and hope for change (basically what I have been trying to do the last year)? What would have happened in your marriage if you had flat out refused to do the dishes?
How I described it to her was we were missing something important and now we can finally see clearly. Our mindset should be, "Oh my gosh I had no idea you needed me to do xyz." There should be an urgency, there should be running. Running to meet the neglected need. But she seems apathetic and resistant. It just hurts me more and I end up feeling even more rejected.
I think you need to call her on this statement. Ask her why she gets to define what your needs are. Ask how she would feel if she told you about a need and you said it was not a real need. She gets to chose whether she wants to try and meet one of your needs or not, but she does not get to define what your needs are.
In addition, saying this allows her to ignore her responsibility in the marriage. Since sex isn't a need, she does not need to address this area of the marriage and does not have to focus at least on that choice she has made.