Filling my own love tank
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Old 03-29-2011, 03:12 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Filling my own love tank

Has this ever happened to you ...

You pull up to the 'Full Serve' line at the gas station. You wait and look for an attendant, they aren't there, so you get out and start filling your own tank. Still no one, so you do your windshield and check your oil. Eventually they show up and you exchange a couple of words and then go inside and pay.

How long would you keep going to this gas station?

This is the way my relationship is with my wife and I have been going for 27 years. Sure it wasn't always that way. At first, the service was great. Every time I drove up, there was no waiting. Excellent service right down to rotating the tires and changing the oil. She even advertised ... open 24 hours ... gave me coupons to come back. Felt like this was the best place in the world. That was for 5 years or so, then the gradual decline to where we are now.

Now the service station is hardly ever open. Lately I have been driving by and not stopping at all. I have been running on fumes. Soon there will be a breakdown.

Seriously, she has never taken any action in regards to my need for affection/sex. Even when we were dating, if we held hands it was because I reached out to her. If we hugged, I reached out to hug her. If we had sex, I initiated. Now, even if we are getting along, if we cuddle on the couch at night it is because either I ask her to join me or because I snuggle in beside her.

We have just been in a month long fight. It started due to constant rejection. Things I would do are:

1) After the alarm goes off in the morning, I would wait a minute or two and then roll over to hug her. She told me she hates that I do this.
2) I would come home from work and hug her while she is in the kitchen. She told me she hates that I do this.
3) I would send her flirty loving text messages during the day, like "you looked great in your work out clothes this morning". She has told me it makes her uncomfortable.
4) I would reach out to hug her at night in bed and she told me to quit doing this because it puts pressure on her to have sex.

So I quit doing all these things. This has been going on for a month. I woke up at 4:33am this morning and realized that I have been filling my own love tank. I realized that I have been the one doing these things that I think of as loving, that she thinks are annoying. Now that I have stopped doing these things, I feel empty and alone. I didn't realize these things before because I always initiated. I could maybe go a week or so without initiating any affection, but never a month. Sure I got rejected most of the time, but every once in a while, she would accept my affection and my love tank would fill.

When thinking about it, I am guessing that the number of times she actually initiated any affection/sex is probably less than 10 times in the 27 years we have been together. I remember walking at Disneyland about 11 years ago and she reached out and took my hand. I remember being in Las Vegas when she came out of the bathroom wearing some sexy lingerie.

The strange thing is that if I reach out to her and she doesn't reject me, we both feel the connection. She holds me so tight and tells me how much she has missed me and I feel her love for me.

Is she just acting when I say I 'feel her love for me'?

Does it makes sense that she could enjoy being close (at times) yet never initiate?

What a pathetic relationship!!!
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Old 03-29-2011, 03:23 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Filling my own love tank

What is her love language? It is possible that she has been running on empty.
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Old 03-29-2011, 03:26 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Filling my own love tank

I agree. What is HER love language? Yours is obviously physical touch. I would look into it. She might seem connected because she knows she's making you happy when she goes along with those affection things.
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Old 03-29-2011, 03:39 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Filling my own love tank

I really hate to say this because I think it's BS but is your wife autistic?
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Old 03-29-2011, 04:00 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Filling my own love tank

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Originally Posted by Runs like Dog View Post
I really hate to say this because I think it's BS but is your wife autistic?
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When I read the definition of Autistic, some things fit.

She has problems with Social Interaction in that she doesn't take any initiative with any of her relationships.

An example would be Christmas. She will say, we should have Christmas at our house. But she won't phone her family to invite them. Until the last minute. She will complain that they never call ... but she doesn't call them either. She has never set up a date for us. We will talk about going on holidays, but it would never happen if I didn't plan it.

We have very good friends that have emailed to 'get together' and she never replies or does anything to actually 'get together'. She has friends that call and leave messages to do things with her, and she will often not return the calls.

The friends she has are 'pushy' people. They call her and set up 'dates' to go shopping together, etc. She doesn't have to call them. She has a routine where she goes to exercise classes with the same group of people all the time. She likes this because it is pre-arranged. She doesn't have to 'ask' someone to go. Same with a team she is part of.

Again, the weird thing, is that once she is in a social atmosphere, she is very likable. People are attracted to her, because she is a very good listener. She is very kind and patient with everyone. But she will often come home after being out and complain how the other person only talked about themselves and never asked her anything about our family.

Same as with affection and sex, she doesn't initiate any social interaction, but she enjoys it when it happens. But also, when it is set up, to go do something, she gets very uptight. Often she is very grumpy before going out. We are usually late, because she spends a great amount of time making sure her hair is perfect and her clothes look right.
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Old 03-29-2011, 04:04 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by LonelyNLost View Post
I agree. What is HER love language? Yours is obviously physical touch. I would look into it. She might seem connected because she knows she's making you happy when she goes along with those affection things.
I believe her primary love language is 'acts of service'. I have read all kinds of relationship books and over the years, I have tried many things to make her happy. I can tell that somethings I do make her happy. She likes it when I help clean up supper, when I help with laundry, etc. But sometimes it also makes her uptight because she thinks I am doing it for sex. Which I have to admit is sometimes the reason I am helping.

No matter what I do, it doesn't make her want to attend to my need for 'physical touch'.
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Old 03-29-2011, 04:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Filling my own love tank

That whole recoiling from touch thing sets off bells in my head. Neglected Romanian orphans have that oppositional behavior as well. But none of this is here nor there. Just my one-off clumsy guess.
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Old 03-29-2011, 04:28 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by SadSamIAm View Post
1) After the alarm goes off in the morning, I would wait a minute or two and then roll over to hug her. She told me she hates that I do this.
2) I would come home from work and hug her while she is in the kitchen. She told me she hates that I do this.
3) I would send her flirty loving text messages during the day, like "you looked great in your work out clothes this morning". She has told me it makes her uncomfortable.
4) I would reach out to hug her at night in bed and she told me to quit doing this because it puts pressure on her to have sex.
All I originally thought when I read these was "I would be pi**ed off If my husband didn't do these things"! God that has to be hard on you as a Physical touch kind of guy!

Some women are just NOT comfortable initiating , It is the ESTROGREN swimming in their systems, gives them the more "RECEPTIVE" sex drive.

Given the way she is with her friends & relatives with no initiating anything, at least she is consistent, it is not just you! Sounds like if her friends weren't a little pushy, she may not have any. I guess that is a blessing.

BUt this has got to be hell to live with. Touching & being touched is healing, I feel for your situation. I would not survive with a spouse like that. 27 yrs is a long time.
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Old 03-29-2011, 04:52 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Filling my own love tank

It is hell to live with. I am always walking on egg shells, because I know:

1) If I want to be affectionate, I have to initiate.
2) If I initiate, I have a 90% chance of being rejected.

It actually helps to write this stuff out. Although I have been living with this for many years, I never really equated the way she is with her friends and family as being the same as her being cold with me until just today. I have always taken it so personally, and now I am thinking it is more about her, than it is about me.
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Old 03-29-2011, 06:35 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by SadSamIAm View Post
It actually helps to write this stuff out. Although I have been living with this for many years, I never really equated the way she is with her friends and family as being the same as her being cold with me until just today. I have always taken it so personally, and now I am thinking it is more about her, than it is about me.
I have always found -writing things out, dissecting our thoughts, whether in a letter (whether we send or not), an email, online, has always brought ME much clarity, sometimes direction, then healing. Always great to get some feedback too! Love forums!

Yeah, I would also think this is more about HER. Even if she was married to another, given her actions in everyday life with others, the next man likely faring similar treatment. For being an acts of service woman, I wonder what acts she is doing for you -her friends/relatives?

One of the most important things I plan to teach all of my children is to be sure to marry someone with as closely matched Love Languages as their own - in a similar order. I feel this makes marraige flow so much easier as we tend to GIVE what you want in return. It is supposed to work that way anyway!
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Old 03-29-2011, 06:55 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Filling my own love tank

she's mad at you for something and has been for a long time. When you touch her it pisses her off because she is so mad at you and you don't even know it!

Find out what is wrong. Something is wrong with the relationship in her mind....figure out what it is and things will change!
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Old 03-29-2011, 07:09 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Filling my own love tank

My wife has been a stay at home mom for almost 18 years. Since our first child was born.

Her acts of service are domestic chores. She gets up every morning and makes the kids their lunches (even though they are all in high school). She takes pride in making a very good, healthy meal at night for her family. She keeps the house cleaner than any house I have ever seen. Laundry is always done and groceries are always there.

Our problem is that we don't feel love from what each other are doing.

I have tried to help with cleaning the house and preparing supper, etc. It is tough, because I feel like I am cleaning an already 'clean' house. It is tough, because supper is prepared when I get home the majority of the time. I need to do more in this area. Maybe I should take over all cooking on weekends.

I make quite a fair amount of money and we have a fairly large house. I thought that offering to pay for a maid, would be viewed as an 'act of service'. But it offended my wife. I think she would feel loved if I cleaned the toilets, but not if I paid someone else to clean our toilets.

That is one thing that frustrates me. I work a fair number of hours a week running a company. My efforts pay for everything we have (large home, cars, vacation property, vacations, etc.) Virtually anything my wife wants, she can have and she knows it. But my running the company does nothing in regards to an 'act of service'.

Does that make sense?
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Old 03-30-2011, 12:11 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Filling my own love tank

I started to read some of your other threads, sounds like your wife is ULTRA sensitive and can not forgive things from ages ago, blaming you for something you said -causing her to have an eating disorder . Your goofing around with your daughters offended her. Your trying to help her -offering a maid and this offends her! You must walk on egg shells daily. How in the world do you deal with this?

You sound like a very caring husband to me. And she is taking you for granted. Doesn't really realize how good she has it.
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Old 03-30-2011, 07:54 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Filling my own love tank

Have you ever considered taking a complete boycott of sex with her for say 2-3 months, and seeing if she comes to you? Make your own plans, do your own thing, make yourself busy with other things, but as far as initiating, or any of that, simply take care of your own needs yourself, and see what happens?
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Old 03-30-2011, 10:32 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Filling my own love tank

I made it through a month of not initiating. That is the longest I have been able to stay away.

I believe that if I was to stay away for 2-3 months, that she might initiate. But I don't see it fixing the issue. The effect would be that we would be very cold to each other for 2-3 months. Have sex once every two or three months. Not fight about me being too affectionate. It might be better for her, but not for me. Actually, it wouldn't be better for her either.

I am going to work on me. Not be quite so available. I have been working out regularly for the past two or three months. I am going to get into a group of guys and golf a couple of times a week. But I will be initiating affection and sex every few days. Life is too short to wait for it and after this many years, I know what to expect.

My choices are to live in a virtually sexless marriage, leave the marriage, or keep working for her affection.

Life goes by so fast. I am 47 and feel like only yesterday I was 25. I love my wife and will continue to work for us to be close. I don't believe the feelings we have every couple of weeks when we make love and are close are fake. I think she truly loves me, just has some issue preventing her to show it the way I need.
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