Sex in MarriageSexual problems are common in many relationships. This section is for discussions about sexuality. Please limit discussions to those asking for help with a problem and those offering advice. Any other threads may be deleted.
I posted a problem a few days ago explaining my sexual problems with my husband. So to make a long story short and recap for those who didn't read it here goes. Sex has been awful for years now when it even happens. My husband and I have sex literally 4 to 6 times a year, 6 only if I am really lucky. This has been going on for years. Every time I just to have sex with him he always has an excuse not to do it. In all honesty the excuses are just a bunch of BS - for example he has an awful headache and then a few minutes later leaves to go out with friends, or his back hurts so bad and an hour later he is leaving to go trekking up the mountain to go hunting.
He would tell me I was being stupid to think it was about me, that he is not cheating, that he just doesn't have that high a sex drive, and that there are a lot more important things in life.
If you need the whole story read my previous posting. Anyway, I have done my best to work through this although I have failed in different ways, but really I am not perfect and I have needs too. Personally I think that he should make the attempt if he knows how important it is to me. Although I am more of a 4-7 night a week kind of person, I tried to compromise with him for like 2 times a month. Even that isn't a lot, but at least better than once every 3 months or so.
The reason I am writing again now? He talked to me last night and told me clear as day that our sex life is over. He knows I am not happy with the situation (I try not to say anything, and try to be a patient wife) and he decided that he wasn't going to deal with it anymore and that there will be no more sex in our marriage and he would be happier that way. At that point I damn near pleaded with him to see someone with me, a marriage counselor, a sex therapist, a doctor, anyone. He said no. I told him if he didn't want to talk to anyone so many doctors and psychiatrists write books, why don't we try to find some answers or help there. He said no, he would just rather not have sex with me at all. He'd be happier to just not have to deal with anything and it's really no big deal to give up having sex with me.
What do I do? Leave? Stay in totally sexless marriage? Maybe I could if everything else was perfect, but it is so far from it it's just ridiculous. Should I abandon all dignity and beg him to reconsider? He already will not go to counseling, whether marital or sexual, so that suggestion will fall on deaf ears. Is it fair that I am supposed to give up that aspect of life just because he wants to?
Any suggestions would be great. And I can really use both a male and female perspective on this one. I am ready to lose it here.
It almost seems as if he is trying to push you over the edge. Are you sure he's not cheating? How old is he? He knows how important this is to you, and now he is just taking it away. That's not a marriage. I'm so sorry you're going through this, and I can relate. My H also denies me sex, and I am seriously considering divorce since we don't have children yet.
Should I abandon all dignity and beg him to reconsider?
are you financially dependent on him? Could you leave and support yourself? i ask because the only reason i stayed and abandoned all dignity to try and force my H to change was because i had no where else to go. i was financially dependent on my H. i had to make my situation work because the prospect of leaving and making that situation work (getting a job, etc) was scarier.
its totally ok if he wants to have zero sex... but.. if you do of course thats a problem.
I would simply say (based on your post) GET OUT.
Really... he can have "no sex" on his own.
Tell him you found the perfect solution to this problem. He can stay there alone and have no sex... You be out with someone who sees that sex is huge part of relationship.
Since he is not considering your feelings at all and laid it all on the line like that.
I would counter with this....
I understand you dont want to have sex at all but that is not the marriage I agreed on in the begining. How selfesh of you not to consider my needs. I will find a way to fill my sexual needs some place elese since you have no desire to fill them.
Its not an affair if they know about it. Its now their choice. What a selfish act he did. I would really question if life would be better with or without him. The good thing is since he he being very direct with you. You should have no issues with being very direct back at him.
No sex at all. Sounds like living in hell to me. You dont deserve that. No one does.
I lived in a completely sexless marriage for 6 years. He didn't tell me in so many words that's the way it was going to be, so I was always hopeful things would change. I almost wish he would have just come right out and said it from the beginning - might have prevented me from losing so many of my best sexual years. Yeah, I'm a little bitter about that.
Ultimately, I just flat out told him I couldn't live like that anymore despite my strong desire to keep my son from the heartache of divorce. He told me he had some deep resentment and anger toward me (looonng story) and didn't love me anymore despite the fact that he liked me as a roomate, friend and mother of his child Finally, I asked him once and for all to tell me if there was no chance for us because I needed that info to make some decisions for myself and that my options were divorce or a discreet affair. At the very last possible moment, he gave me the barest glimmer of hope.
We've since had sex twice (initiated by me) and we're hanging on by a thread. I'm hopeful that things continue in a positive direction. I think the shock of me leaving him for good was enough to make him make his own decisions - it really could have gone the other way but at least then I wouldn't be in limbo anymore.
Weird as it seems, the time away from each other emotionally may have helped to heal some wounds. I think if I had had these discussions with him six years ago, we'd have divorced.
Anyway, I hope the best for you. I've lived it. If you don't have children, I really don't see the point to staying. If you do, then you have some tough decisions to make. Good luck!
One of the toughest things about this decision is that we do have children. It makes it difficult to decide what to do. Looking at all the advice given by professionals half say that children need an intact nuclear family, no matter what the parents (or one parent) suffering, the other half say that the children would be better off if the parents were happy regardless of if they were married or not.
And the most frustrating of all this is, is that he was faced with the fact of losing me for good. We had separated after an affair I had a little while back (I had warned him multiple times it was only a matter of time, since I was getting no where with him) and he was the one that came to me and said he couldn't live like that, he wanted me back and to work out our marriage. I remember thinking then that this was a bad idea and we were already apart, the hardest part was over and we should stay that way. But I gave it another chance as we are married and do have children. We had also had sex since the affair, so it's not like he cannot stand to touch me after that. I might be more understanding then.
The fact is, I went through (and I knew this going in to it) all the repercussions of the aftermath of affair. I dealt with him taking control of everything (my name is yet to be onto any of our bank accounts), his going through all my mail, phone, computer, etc. The constant mistrust and me bending over backwards to show him I was sorry and show him I can be trusted again. And I did it all with NOT ONE WORD of complaint (and that was HARD).
Maybe it's selfish, but I have to think, when does my suffering end? Or do I not have the right to be happy because it would be better for the children to have an intact family? Do I wait until they are grown and continue like this until then?
I have always been a fighter for everything I thought was right, whether for me, or anyone around me. Usually I am such a strong willed person, but anymore I am just ready to give up and accept that this is my life and maybe it would be easier to just go with it, than trying to keep fighting so I can be happy.
goincrazy - It really does feel like he is trying to push me over the edge. He is only in his mid 30s so to give up sex totally is really odd, especially since he was so active before me and in the beginning of our relationship. I just can't understand why he would try to push me away. If that is the goal, he reached that before. When we were separated it was he, not I, that asked for a reconciliation. He was the one that wanted to work on the marriage and asked for me back. I am baffled as to why do all that just to come to this point?
happyquest & 63Vino - the direct approach is probably the best way to go with this. And happyquest you are right, it is not an affair if they know about it. In all honesty I just dread the confrontation and inevitable fight that will go along with being up front. I am just so tired of fighting )or even talking about sex) with him. Since he has the upper hand in this for me to bring it up at all just makes me feel pathetic. Maybe it won't feel that way if I go with that approach. I did try to suggest an open marriage before (that was a last ditch effort when it looked like I couldn't help fix our life) and he hated the idea. I don't imagine he would take it any better if I told him that I will fulfill my needs elsewhere, but I guess I don't have much of an option other than be completely miserable.
So it could go two ways, he could say fine since that's what I need and he won't give it to me (I doubt this one) or he could tell me that is unacceptable. If he tells me no, I have to choose if I want to break up the family or not. Believe me if we had no kids I would have been gone already, because this is ridiculous. If I decide not to upset the house and put the children through the whole divorce process, at that point would an affair be wrong? Not that I am going to explore that option. It took more than 6 years of this nonsense to drive me to do it last time, and I am really not looking for all that nonsense again now. But if he does say no and still refuses to have sex, I can't decide if an affair would be morally wrong or not. I mean, he is getting what he wants - a wife to cook, clean, be a mother to his kids and all the other endless things that are required of me and he doesn't even have to sleep with me - so should I be able to get what I want even if it isn't from him?
Any opinions on this one would be great!
He has told you he will no longer have sex with you. That's his decision not yours. Ask him what he thinks you should do then.
I'm pretty sure he's got some unresolved resentment and anger towards you that only he can deal with and let go of. Tell him you know that and he needs to seek counceling or something to learn to let go of it but it's not fair to punish you this way. He's backed you into a corner.
Let him know that you'd like to keep the family intact but you have needs. If he refuses to meet them or at least work with you to get there - you will have to seek sex and intimacy somewhere else. But let him know this is what you are doing and why - don't hide it from him. He drew the line in the sand and in your case I don't think a discreet affair would be so horrible.
I can completely understand your dispair and desperation - I've been there.
Male perspective here: Agree with above - been there, done that, have the t-shirt. . .the marriage is essentially over when he declares it sexless for no legitimate reason (like let's say a Christopher Reeve type of situation).
Let me also add a religious perspective (and BTW, I am not a reverent person. . .just find the study of relgious doctrine interesting).
I am not sure how you were brought up with your religious views but I was raised Roman Catholic but now consider myself "intelligent designer."
Anyway, you know how uptight Catholics are about sex. Just about no circumstance can you have sex and even in marriage, it's supposed to be a "marital embrace", not an act of lust.
Anyhoo, knowing how uptight Catholic doctrine is about sex. . .wanna know what I beleive their position is (I am not an apologist)?
For the marriage to be valid, it must be in a state of consummation. Consummation is not a one time act your husband did on your wedding night. IT's a constant, ongoing process. Now. . .of course there are differences - as you note - a 4-7X/weeker vs. a 2x/monther. . .both are states of "consummation." You can change up and leave because of a different libido.
That being said, his choice to not consummate his marriage is effectively annulling or invalidating your marriage. It doesnt' exist. In fact, annulment means it never existed.
It's a "wifely duty" and a "husbandly duty" to the marriage. I use that word "duty" becuase to me, it's a pleasure. My stb-x invalidated our marriage in that regard.
Now. . .as far as children and going through the divorce, let me say this, only speaking as a father of a 3 boys spread apart in ages (youngest is 20 months - long story how that happened in our sexless marriage - can you say I am extremely lucky - 1x/year ??? ). Out of all the parties who have had to handle it, honestly, they handle it the best. Truthfully, I think it's been hardest on us, harder on the grandparents, and easiest on the kids. The kids just want to know that they are safe and their environment secure and they at least get to see the displaced parent a little. Of course, I may not be privvy to some internal suffering but it really is true when they say, "Kids are resilient." It's not just something they tell you to make you feel better.
Feel free to private message me with any more concerns.
All this being said. . .all this being said. . .let me say I wouldn't wish divorce on my worst enemy. It's horrible. I would plead with him first, like I pleaded with my wife to not have to not pull the trigger. Don't make you do it.
Divorce sucks. . .whether you are the leaver or the left. No party gets off easy.