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 am not sure this is the right forum for this overall issue, however, sex and intimacy is a huge problem for us so it seems to be the best fit out of all the choices.
I am a 33 yr old federal government IT worker. I work about 12-18 hours a week in the office, the rest I work out of the house.
My wife is a 31 yr old nurse. She works two 12 hour, night shifts a week on average.
Living with us is her 11 yr old son and our 1 year old son. The past year or so has been extremely rough for us. We have dealt with a new baby, her having some health issues, and marriage issues.
Her problem with me has been that she feels that I am unreliable as a partner and passive-aggressive with her. Now the unreliableness doesn't stem from me being lazy around the home. I handle 95% of the finances, I do ALL of the house work (this includes dishes, trash, vacuum, dusting, all laundry except hers, etc). On the days I go into the office, I often don't get to relax at all until the kids are asleep, which often is about 900pm. On the days I work from home, I rarely get much work done because I am watching our son while she sleeps all day from working over night.
What I do screw up on is she will ask me to do something, wash something a certain way, put something away a certain way, anything like that. Then I agree to it and don't do it how she wants or don't do it at all. This leads to her smarting off to me or nagging me about stuff. I then in turn respond in a passive manner. I feel like I do this because I have grown to resent her, what I see as laziness. Just this morning she told her son (my stepson) she would take him to school. I went up there 2x to wake her up and come time to go to school, she's still in bed sleeping.
All of this has led to a completely horrible sex life, which used to be a completely amazing sex life. I think we've had sex maybe 7 or 8 times in the last year, sometimes going 3 months in between. But it gets worse.
Our son, who is 1, still sleeps in our bed. This is something I agreed to initially to assist with her breast feeding. However she hasn't breast fed him since he was 8 mos old. As a result, he hates his crib, and he still doesn't sleep through the night, often waking up 2-4 times, sometimes all the way where he his up for 2-4 hours.
As a result of all of this I get little to no affection from my wife unless I initiate. When I go to kiss or hug her she kisses or hugs back, but it's quick and she's ready to move on to whatever it was she was doing when I went to kiss her. She won't just stop and enjoy the moment.
When we do spend alone time together it's always doing the things she likes. We go to the casino so she can gamble (I hate the casino but go and sit with her, often for 4-6 hours while she plays). When we are at the casino she is a completely different person. She flirts hard with me, initiates affection, and even talks about sex. Then we get home and there is a restless baby in our bed and all the promises of what she's going to do to me go right out the window. We watch tv shows together several nights a week, but they are only the things she likes (reality shows, cooking shows, etc). Sure I have grown to enjoy them but she will never do anything I suggest.
I am really lost here. I know I am not a perfect husband. I know I can be passive which combined with her personality, brings out the worst in her. But I have grown lonely. I long for her affection, for her to show me she loves me and is attracted to me, instead of just saying the words. I have become extremely depressed. Each day I find myself thinking about how much I desire my wife, how much I want her and need her in my life and how I just want her to show me she feels the same way.
I feel like our relationship is headed for the trash though and I really don't know how much longer I can take being made to feel like I am never a priority. I don't expect to always be the priority as we are a family, we have children and a house to take care of. But I need more than what I am getting now.
Buddy, I really sympathize with you on this one. Your description is uncannily similar to mine. I have grown to resent the nitpicking and nagging not because I don't do anything but because it wasn't done the way she wants it. It chips away at the love you feel.
I don't think that is your issue, though it should be discussed. No doubt though, the child in the bed is problematic. Your bedroom is the one place the two of should be able to connect and be yourselves, and not just sexually. That really should stop, especially if your wife is now using that as a comfort more than the practical reason it started for. I went through this and there are techniques to getting the child to accept sleeping alone. It takes time and willpower (you have to leave them crying for certain durations, which get longer as go).
I do see some hope for you here though, and I wish I had this. When you go to the casino she changes. Seems to me that she is being taken out of her day to day drudgery and comes alive because of it. Perhaps this is what you need. Not a casino trip of course, but periodically change your pace. Surprise her with a weekend break (with the family), or meet her for lunch, or at her workplace with flowers. Just do something to break the routine.
The sex will come back, and it may have to be talked through, but first I think you need to make a conscious decision to break through the routine periodically and show that she is still important to you. More importantly tell her how important she is. Give this time, and at some point she will at the very least be receptive to talking about the intimacy issue, or perhaps it will come back simply because of these changes.
I'm in the middle of this process myself. It's a challenge. You can't change yourself, you can only try your hardest. You will likely continue to let her down on the details, I know I still do. But I believe she will not focus on those negatives so much if she is a happier person. If you slip up, apologize and say you'll try harder. That's all you can do.
Have you tried marriage counciling? We went this route when our situation caused depression in me too. If it gets that bad you really should look into talking with a professional.
Stop following her leading, instead stand up to be the man.
A man that follows his woman is withering any sexual attraction she would have for you.
The nagging, the criticizing, all these things, are just this one thing.
Stop trying to be a "perfect husband". Stop this now. This only grows resentment and withers sexual attraction between the good man and his woman.
Instead go back to the things that you yourself enjoy, and invite your woman to share these things in your happiness. This kills resentment and increases sexual attraction between the good man and his woman.
Search these forums, understand what kind of sexual attraction a woman has for a "nice guy". None.
And unerstand what kind of sexual attraction a woman has to the "dominant man". Irresistible.
Understand the difference from the "nice guy" and the "dominant man" in control of himself and his environment. Realize where you are and where you are wishing to be, and be the man to make the difference.
This will not get any better until you are willing to step up and have honest - direct conflict with her about the way she is treating you. So first thing:
- Your child gets ferberized - google it - it works - if you let your child stay in your bed nothing else matters. Allowing a 1 year old to take over your bed is not something a MAN allows
- Make up a more evenly balanced list of chores and tell her that she needs to do her share - and that not doing so is NOT acceptable to you
Now not acceptable needs to mean something. For me - if we get THERE - which is very rare I stop talking/helping with anything optional etc.
Sounds like she has totally bullied you.
By the way she WANTS you to be aggressive - she likes the excitement of conflict - that is why she likes to gamble so much and she finds it such a turn on.
Originally Posted by BuddyL33
I've suggested it on several occasions but she has declined stating that talking to someone helps me, not her.
So **** has really taken a turn for the worse. Yesterday my wife left the house on an errand to help a friend. I was on her computer and her email was open. I saw a message in there from an old boyfriend of hers, now friend ( this guy even helped get me the job I have now). She's told me he's going through a rough patch with his girl leaving him. He also lives in Texas while we live in Kansas.
So the message reads that he wishes she (my wife) would give him one of those full body massages like she used to.
I felt this was completely inappropriate for him to be talking to my wife like this. This message was a Facebook message so I couldn't see what she wrote back if anything. However there were a slew of messages below it from him. My emotional anxiety got the best of me and I started looking. Each message was filled with request for naked pictures of her and talk of what he would do to her, and how he could even fly into town and do those things to her in our bed. Again I could only see what he was writing not her.
I clearly had a problem with this. I could tell by his responses that she was writing him back and it wasn't please stop. So I changed her Facebook password so I could go in and look at what she had been writing. What I found shocked me. I found that while she wasn't telling him she'd be glad to do those things or making arrangements, she was flirting back some, feeding the issue. I was very very hurt by this. Now I will say this guy is a d-bag. He's a guy that likes to be with multiple women at once. He has open relationships with multiple women and doesn't care about how he is. So his comments weren't so much of a shock considering the source, but I still feel he crossed a line as did my wife.
So I confronted my wife telling her exactly what I did and how I came across everything. I didn't hide that I looked in her email, or changed her facebook. She was upset at the fact that I did this but also admitted that she used poor judgment in how she chose to talk to him, but that how he was talking to her got uncomfortable so she didn't respond to everything. This opened up a dialogue that I wasn't ready to hear. She told me she didn't consider my feelings because she is so checked out emotionally right now with us and herself.
I also called the guy and told him he needed to stay away. He of course immediately texted her and asked her to call him which she did for 37 minutes, according to our cell bill.
we talked and talked and I asked why she was still with me and she said for stability for her, her son, and our son. That having them grow up in a stable environment was the most important thing to her and I provide that. I asked her why when we go out on occasion to the casino or what not why she is so flirty and loving and all of that and she said she thinks it's just wishful thinking on her part in the moment that everything is ok.
She went on to tell me she isn't happy with the person she's become, both physically and emotionally and until she can fix that, she can't even begin to attempt to work on us. I begged her to go to marriage counseling together and she just kept going back to it being pointless when she isn't even happy with herself.
At this point I really had to do some thinking. I don't want to turn out like my parents and just be married for the sake of stability. I want and deserve more. I also know that I don't want to be without my wife. I love her so much and believe that there is a solution. I feel like I took a vow that included for better or for worse and this is definitely for worse.
It gets worse though. So I was laying down on the floor playing with our son and noticed her blackberry under the couch and it was on a texting screen where I could tell she was talking to her best friend and I could tell it was about me. Once again my emotional anxiety got the best of me along with some major insecurity I now have and I read the conversation.
Within it were comments about, "how f-ing annoying I am", and what if I find out that she talked to another ex and even met up with him while her and her gf were out the other night. Her friend acknowledged in the text that even though nothing happened I'd probably worry and question my wife about it. My wife agreed and said she should just get another cell phone I don't know about so she didn't have to answer to me about stupid stuff. He friend told my wife that. Her friend also told my wife that she should give me sex so I'd back off. My wife told her that she already did the other night and that it sucked.
It was just more of this and it really hurt to see my wife talking about me like this to a friend. I had no idea she harbored such anger.
At this point my heart was racing and my mouth was dry. I was flipping out. So I called her father and asked him to come watch the children so my wife and I could go out for a bit.
He came over and my wife and I left. I told her what I did and what I read in her vent session with her friend. She totally called me out on how dare I invade that privacy. In the conversation she has admitted that she didn't tell me about meeting up with him, because she didn't want to deal with me being insecure about the whole situation. I explained to her that I was insecure because she didn't tell me and never would have been if she had told me. I trusted and do trust my wife but when she withholds information like that, it makes it look like she has something to hide and then my imagination becomes my own worst enemy.
We talked for about 2 hours and she said she doesn't believe that I can change who I am. That I am emotionally needy, that I am insecure, and that I am emotionally wreckless and unchecked. I literally get all anxious and sick when I worry about things and hastily make irrational decisions so I agree with the emotionally unchecked. I am insecure because of how withdrawn I know she is, so I find myself trying to fix things on my own. I stew and stew over what she's thinking and how maybe I can make things better somehow.
At this point she's mad at me, she actually just called me and wanted to know some more about what I had done, which led to an hour long conversation. I felt like she listened some, but ultimately I really don't know what she believes or doesn't believe about what I had to say.
I also just don't know where to go from here and if our marriage can be saved. I am scared and lost and feel like I am going to throw up. I've stopped eating, and I just feel like I am crashing.
I do have an appointment with a councilor I have gone to in the past tomorrow, but right now that can't come soon enough.
The time is now to start being in control of yourself and your environment, to become the dominant man.
The time is now to stop the negotiating, begging, pleading, etc with your woman. That is going to do only one thing, make her continue to see you as the "weak man" and drive her more and more into the arms of some affair man.
Buddy let me start off by saying that I am really sorry that your are going through this. I have had some issues with my wife in the past but nothing like this. From what I make of it and sorry to say, you need to man up and quit being her b1tch! I don't know how long you were dating or have been married, but has it always been like this? One thing that I have learned from many people is you can't change someone unless they want to change. If this has been going on since day one, and she doesn't want to talk to someone to help, you may want to consider different options. It sounds to me like you are a provider and live in house maid. It shouldn't work like that, it's a two way street. I am unemployed while my wife works. Yes I do most of the house chores, but she also does her fair share of the work. That goes along with raising our 5 and 6 year old. As for the one year old, the baby has to go. No matter how tough it is that baby needs to be in his own crib in his own room. He will whine and cry for a while but he will get used to it. If your wife resists it may just be a reason for the two of you to not have sex.
The curiosity thing really gets to me sometimes too, I don't blame you for what you did. Had I been in your shoes I would have done the same thing.
I really hope things pan out for you. I just think you need to be much more assertive and your wife needs to realize that she needs help if the marriage is going to last. Do not be afraid to say "No, I want to do this!" Good luck
So each day my paranoia is eating away at me. My wife has always been a straight shooter with me. So I don't know why suddenly there is this complete lack of trust. I know she is texting an ex boyfriend but she showed me messages once and the conversations are pretty everyday stuff. I talked to the guy as I mentioned in my original post where I had gone through her phone and he was adamant that nothing was going on and that he loved his gf and son very much. I know that my wife would not throw away the stability I provide her and even more importantly her son and our son to fulfill something she is lacking at home.
But **** if I still let my imagination get to me. I find myself actually looking for things that aren't right so I can catch her. I check the cell phone bill several times a day because it shows near real time calling and texting info. I see that as soon as she leaves for work or for a friends she's texting the ex (mentioned above), usually 30 or so messages.
My paranoia is tearing our relationship apart. My wife knows I am paranoid and as a result thinks I've lost it. She was in tears the other morning because of my actions (another reason I think I am mistaken). But my god it's like I can't stop! I hate how I feel and how my mind and more importantly my emotions are controlling me.
I have an appt with a therapist on Tuesday who specializes in anxiety. I am starting to strongly feel like I want to be medicated for this. I want to beat this and begin taking back my marriage. I am insecure, lack confidence, I feel needy, etc. My wife doesn't deserve this from me.
I also want to add that I finally realized what it is that I am doing to make her feel like I am not a partner. I finally understand what she means when she says that there isn't any room in the relationship for both of our emotions.
I will do anything for my wife. She knows this, I know this. There are several things I have agreed to with her simply because I want to see her happy, etc.
However, whenever I become really emotional about something my emotions become priority. I do whatever it takes to get them acknowledged and if there is a problem, see to it that it's fixed. I do this at any cost. It doesn't matter if she doesn't want to talk. It doesn't matter if I promised not to do something. Nothing matters to me except my emotions in the moment.
I finally understand why she is so detached and why she describes me as wearing her out. Clearly I have what I think are emotional anxiety issues. I only hope I can get them taken care of before they do any more damage to our relationship.
Sorry if this thread has become less and less about sexuality which I know is purpose of this subforum. I originally started it because it was about my own sexual and affection needs and it's simply growing into so much more.