Is Marriage supposed to be like this?? - Talk About Marriage
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-01-2008, 02:45 PM Thread Starter
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Is Marriage supposed to be like this??

Short history....
My husband and I will be married for 1 year this month. This whole first year of marriage has been so hard for me.
I grew up in a family of 6, he grew up with only a dad and was an only child(he had a pretty rough childhood). We dated for 2.5 years and I then moved into his house with him and his roommate and 1 month later he proposed. We got married the following May. When I met my husband I knew he was for me, there was "something special" about him when I looked at him. We had excitment, passion, and lots of great times at first.
So whats the Problem?

He has never had a relationship with anyone longer then 3 months before I met him.He was in his early 30's at the time. He's has never had to really "share" his life with anyone. He travels for work so he's gone at least 4 days out of the week, so when he gets home, I am very ready to see him. However when he walks in the door he's sorting through mail, surf the web, and just doesn't talk much and wants to be alone. I understand needing "alone time" however I don't understand him not missing me for 4 days and not being excited to see me when he gets home. I am a very emotional person, he is not. He never shows much emotion/passion. This has been a topic in many of our fights. Many times I have been so excited and ready to see him, I greet him at the door, and it's like it's just another day and he had just seen me that morning (even though it's been 4 days) So i feel completely rejected and disappointed. He tells me he's glad to see me and he missed me, but I just don't feel it. This happens weekly.

I am also a very sexual person, but when it comes to sex or sexual things, it's almost like he's got this huge wall up and isn't really into it. We'll do the act (not as much as I would like) but most of the time i get the vibe from him that he's just "getting the job done". No foreplay, no excitment, teasing, no nothing. I have asked him before "what really turns you on?" thinking maybe it was me that hasn't found what makes HIM happy, but he seriously said "nothing, I can't think of anything". I suggested dressing up, different locations, etc.....but "nothing" was still his answer. One time I had on a nice little outfit before bedtime (he was at the computer) and I sat on his lap for a min. to let him now i was going to bed and invited him to join........3 hours later he comes up to bed. (After i've fallen asleep) can anyone say rejection? I have never felt so undesired in my life. Because he's not a sexual person i constantly question myself that something is wrong with me, and why doesn't he want me or desire me?? I thought "newly weds" were supposed to be on honeymoon for at least a year. I felt like this ON our honeymoon. We only had sex 2 or 3 times on our honeymoon and we were gone for 10 days! Is it normal for a man to not be into sex?

I have tried to suggest different things I/we can do with the house like paintings on the bare walls, new furniture, etc. but he had the house how he likes it before I moved in and I feel like I have to have "permission" before I can decorate my own house. I brought home a mirror for the dining room wall, and asked him to help me hang it.....after i held it up he said "no this won't work, i don't like it, i don't want to look at a mirror in the dining room for the rest of my life" (?) Is it normal for men to have problems with how their wives decorate the house? I feel the need to make the house my own too, or at least make it OURS. Because right now it seems and feels like it's HIS house. This has been the topic of the latest fights. I don't feel comfortable in my own house.

I have been so frustrated and tired of the whole thing. I'm sick of begging for sexual attention and attention in general. I feel like i've told him what my issues are, but nothing ever changes. I've been willing to make changes but he says he has no problems with me. I'm the one with problems with him, and I'm the one *****ing. Do I have too many expectations for marriage? I don't even feel like he's my best friend, I feel so sad and lonely. I feel like we don't just "talk". Most of our conversations consist of discussing our side busines and work. Any suggestions on might I might be missing??? Sorry it's this post is so long...hope someone can offer some suggestions.

Thanks- I'm new here and look forward to chatting with everyone!

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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-02-2008, 02:38 AM
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Re: Is Marriage supposed to be like this??

Hey Southergirl, welcome!

How old are you? I know you said he is in his 30's, are you as well?

Seems like a couple of things, he seems to be bringing his work stress home with him, alot of people come home and are "burnt out" from a long day at the office and just ned time to relax.

My wife is that way, her outlet is computer games, she needs a few hours on the PC before she talks to the rest of the family.

It is a Ying yang thing, I am the sexual one in our relationship, she is not, I think she could easily go the rest of her life without sex, now that she has three kids...LOL But she gives in to my ways

But I was saying I know alot of couples were one is the sexual one, and the other is not, which is weird.

As for the decorating thing, I am very particular and my wife has "horrible taste" that is why I am conviced I am ugly, because my wife likes ugly things...LOL

But really she has zero taste when it comes to design, I grew up with 5 sisters, So I actually have some sort of taste.

I just think your husband is caught up in a "routine" eat, sleep work, etc. It happens.

I know my self and others on here have "date nigths" with our spouse, where we go out and have dinner, comedy club, etc. Something to break up the "habit" that is life.

Best of luck, sounds like he is stressed out and just caught in a rut.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-02-2008, 08:52 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Is Marriage supposed to be like this??

Thanks for your post GAsoccerman. I am in my mid-20's There is a 9 year difference in our ages. I know we are both in a rut. I hate my job, and he's getting unhappy with his job. We did have a heart to heart talk last night and decided to schedule a "date night" just like you mentioned on your post. We decided to take turns planning the "date" every week. I have always tried to be understanding when he needs to wind down after he comes home from 4 days away working.....but I need my husband after not having him for 4 days. I know it's a give and take thing, I have just felt i've been giving and not getting much back (emotionally).
I don't think my taste in design is bad, I had a nice decorated apartment for 6 years before I ever moved in with him. He's told me I can do whatever I want with the house, but I just don't feel the "liberty" to do things. I am willing to accept that it might just be ME having issues, but I'm not sure how to get past it though. I have really low self esteem and self confidence.....not because of HIM by anymeans....I lost it all before I met him (went through some rough life changing times)
Thanks again for the advice and reply- gotta get back to work!
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-02-2008, 09:30 AM
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Re: Is Marriage supposed to be like this??

"Is it normal for a man to not be into sex?"

I didn't think so until I hung out on relationship forums and heard stories like yours with women who try ANYTHING (costumes, toys, positions, locations...) to get desire from their men, and the men just say "whatever".

While its certainly the exception and not the rule, apparently there are men out there who just don't give a flip about sex. The question is: is that who you want to be with?

I can understand that after 30 years of not having to "share" his life, he is used to doing things his way, and that will probably not change.

I do think that setting up "date night" is a great step forward, especially since you will take turns planning it. Keep us posted on how that goes.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-03-2008, 05:01 PM
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Re: Is Marriage supposed to be like this??

Southerngirl, i think it is just that your husband doesn't really know how to share his life so completely with anyone. An only child with just one parent, never learnt about sharing. He wants to, just doesn't know where to start.

Date night is a good start, and make sure you are enthusiastic about whatever he chooses on his turn, even if it isn't all that exciting to you. Rejection after he makes that first effort might set you back further. You can always let him know in other ways later, if you'd rather not go/do whatever he chose that time...

As for decorating the house... again, it's just a case of him not used to others changing 'his' stuff. I would say, move house! Pick one together and decorate it together. That is probably not too practical though, so start by maybe decorating your bedroom? It's a room that you share, and it's reasonable for you to want to make it nice. Once he sees he could quite like it, then you can gradually work to other parts of the house. Maybe the kitchen next..

I think it's just a question of getting him used to being one of a pair.

The intimacy may well improve once he starts to unwind and peep out from his little singleton shell.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-04-2008, 11:25 AM
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Re: Is Marriage supposed to be like this??

It sounds like there are some territorial issues here.

He comes home to the place where he lived before and behaves as if he is still there, by himself. You cannot decorate because it was his place first.

A change in surroundings may be needed to move him into "married man" mode. It will definitely make room for your nesting instincts to flourish.

Last edited by SageMother; 05-06-2008 at 11:05 AM.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-05-2008, 08:58 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Is Marriage supposed to be like this??

I actually suggested yesterday that we just pick out another house to buy "together" and start fresh, but he wasn't too keen on the idea, especially with the economy right now. He thinks it would be "silly to buy another house and move to just another house with 4 walls and a roof because it's still a house" I like the suggestion from Stav to decorate 1 room at a time. I might try that out, it might be easier for him to accept it little by little.

As more days go by I wonder if we will ever get the "Spark" back. This is tough.......I feel like i'm drowning in a lifeless marriage only 1 year into it!!
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-05-2008, 11:35 AM
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Re: Is Marriage supposed to be like this??

I can see why buying another house right now might be difficult. Another thing Stav suggested was to decorate it together...if you get some ideas of what you want to do, talk to your husband about it. There may be things he doesn't like but if you come to agreement on something you'd both like, it will not only be a room you both enjoy but will also bring you closer together. It sounds like you could use some quiet time together...romantic dinner, etc. with no distractions where you could start some conversations about your hopes/dreams/etc. and hopefully get him to open up and connect with you.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-05-2008, 08:49 PM
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Re: Is Marriage supposed to be like this??

I grew up in a house where the man (my moms second husband) acted exactly like your husband.
Lets get to the heart of the matter. Your man, only child or not, is 30 and acting 4. He married you. He needs to understand that marriage is not about how you will fit into his little fantasy of life. right now you are at the bottom of the pecking order. Accepting his childish behavior and trying like mad to find some little trick to make it all work will only lead you down a road of frustration.
Been there done that. 18 years now. I give this advice because this is advice no one told me.
I got all the mamby pamby talk about "learning to compromise and learning to see things from his point of view. He isnt bothering to do this with you. Dont waste your time and emotion trying to do this with him.
The behaviors you describe are indicative of severe problems. Not with you - with him and it will only get worse.
Go talk to a marriage counselor. He will be threatened. he wil accuse you of looking for a reason to leave him and he will assume, no matter how much you reassure him that you love him, that you are lying. He is not just emotionally unapproachable. He witholds his emotions. In time he may begin to use emotion as a form of punishment and reward. This is abusive behavior. I am not saying is a an abuser. But the need to control his environment with absolution means that you are a "guest" in your home. You are a visitor and he will make sure you do not become permanent.
If you want to save this marriage you need to get some real tools to dealing with this personality. Love is not enough, will and good intentions be damned.
He will NOT "come out of his shell" like some hairy primate butterfly. He is who he is. You can accept it and learn to work with it. But you need help to sort it through.
This is harsh and straight. But no one would tell me these things when they should have. So - curse me and tell me I am wrong. But I would rather be disliked on this board than give you useless advice like "decorate the bedroom"
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-06-2008, 05:06 AM
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Re: Is Marriage supposed to be like this??

pigpen, they've only been married a year.. I understand that after 18 years, you may think you've given enough, and that it's time to stop compromising. That sounds reasonable to me too.

But marriage IS a compromise.. it always takes two willing people to make it work, and one of the two must also be willing to take the first steps towards building the bridges. You don't really think she should give up on a marriage a year old, just over some decorating? Isn't it worth trying the decorating first?

It seems to me that these days Divorce is too easily bandied about as the instant solution to all problems. It takes hard work to make a marriage work, and sometime it doesn't work, but not making any attempt at all is a shame and a waste.

Oh and pigpen, we wouldn't dislike you for giving your opinion dear... we are all here to learn, and your view is as valid as anybody else's.. not saying any of us will agree with you though!

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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-06-2008, 07:12 AM
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Re: Is Marriage supposed to be like this??

Yes marriage is a compromise and hubby isn't compromising.
Instead he is sending out huge warning flags.
The fact that he is so resistant to change in the house is a big one. This is someone who keeps absolute control. He has not married her as much as collected her. It does not have to be that way. I suspect that right now it is a bad habit he has and is not even aware he is doing it. But if one allows this behavior to continue it can escalate and be much worse. Especially if his schedule changes and he is home all week.

I never mentioned divorce. I said marriage counseling.
Marriage counseling is to help couples stay together. Not something you do as part of divorce. If couple wait to see the counselor until they are at the divorcing point it may already be too late. I say go alone at first because in a situation where one partner does not feel they have control they need to learn how to have control before going to counseling with their partner. They need to be strong. Counseling will help them be strong. it will also help to identify areas that ARE important to work on in the marriage and allow one to let the the other stuff go.

Yes do this now at one year. It will save years of heartache later.

I just re-read the posts and realized that southern mentions having low self esteem. This is the very best reason in the world to going to a counselor. Because no matter what hubby does or says she will always feel at the bottom. She needs to raise her self up.

Southern, everyone has made good suggestions of things you can try. But none of them will be effective if you don't have good self esteem. Do not try to make your husband responsible for your self esteem. Go to counseling. YOU ARE Strong or you would not have survived the stuff in the past that pulls you down now. But your husband is a strong personality and it is going to take an equally strong personality to make this work. Seeing a counselor is like taking vitamins before you get sick. Prevention is better than cure.

Last edited by pigpen; 05-06-2008 at 07:22 AM.
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