Considering allowing my husband to have sex outside the marriage
[B]My husband and I have been married for 10 years. We're both in our early 30's and have 4 kids; the oldest is 5 and the youngest is 18 months. My husband has always had a very high sex drive. He wants sex at least twice a day. Before we had kids, I was happy to oblige, but now it's become extremely difficult for me to meet his needs. Not only is it hard to have frequent sex because of the kids, but my libido has plunged while his seems to be growing even stronger. Right now, we're averaging about twice a week, and I do it mostly just to please him. It's not that he's not good in bed or doesn't care about pleasing me; he really tries to make it good for me, but I just don't really feel much desire to have sex. Every now and then I'll be aroused, but that's becoming increasingly rare. Naturally, that has affected the quality of the sex that we do have. We do it mostly in one position, and I can't even begin to entertain his kinky fantasies. I give him blowjobs but that doesn't really help, it just makes him want to have intercourse even more.
My husband has made it clear that he needs more and/or better sex, and we seem to be at an impasse because i'm not willing (or able) to give him more than I'm already giving him. I've been to my doctor and a sex therapist and they've told me that there's nothing abnormal about me; my libido seems to have just naturally settled at its current low point. The kids keep me busy but i don't work so i don't feel like I'm under a crazy amount of stress or anything. I've just lost interest in sex.
My husband has asked my permission to go outside the marriage to have his needs met. He's suggested a number of ground rules, e.g., he must be discreet, no overnight stays with other women unless he's traveling on business, no dates or social outings with other women, he must use protection, he can't bring other women into our house, no sex with anyone that I know personally, no street-level prostitutes, etc. The only rule I would be subject to is that I can't ask about his extramarital sex life (sort of like a "don't ask, don't tell" policy). This kind of thing is apparently not unusual in his family, since his father and uncles had mistresses that their wives knew about but put up with.
He's a wonderful man and we have a great relationship in every other respect. He helps out around the house and with the kids, he's affectionate, he's a great father, he works very hard (60+ hours/week) to support us and our lifestyle (I have some expensive tastes), and he's good to my family. I can't think of a single thing I've ever asked him to do that he hasn't done. He's good looking and very active (he still finds time to work out regularly and maintain a great body despite his hectic schedule), which is why I think he'd have no trouble meeting women for NSA sex if I were to greenlight this arrangement.
Obviously I'm not thrilled about the idea of my husband having sex with other women. On the other hand, our sex life has declined to the point where sex is like just another chore for me. Perhaps it would be a relief for both of us if he could have his needs met elsewhere. We love each other and our children very much, so divorce is not really an option.
Any advice would be appreciated.
EDIT 1: A lot of people have said this indicates that my husband is selfish. I think I should clarify why I disagree, and maybe shed some more light on why I'm actually considering this.
When I said my husband is good to my family, I don't just mean that he's courteous and gets along with them. Four years ago, our family was hit with dual tragedies in the span of two weeks: my sister's husband died in a car accident and my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. My sister was left penniless and uneducated with a 4 year old son to support. My husband helped her get back on her feet, paid for her to go to nursing school, and has acted as a father figure to my nephew. As for my mother, my husband insisted that she move in with us so that he could help with her care (my father died a while ago and I have no other siblings). Because I was pregnant with my third child and nursing my second, I couldn't attend to my mother as much as I wanted. My husband was there for her more than I was; he tended to her, took her to her doctor's appointments, and even stayed with her in the hospital as she recovered from her surgery. My mom credits him with having saved her life (she's now in remission).
The other aspect of it is that my husband didn't want to have this many kids, he only wanted two at the most. I'm the one who wanted four kids and I still want more, and he has completely deferred to my wishes (though he now says he couldn't imagine a life without our 4 children). He had wanted me to be a working woman but I told him I just wanted to be a stay at home mom and raise my kids, and he acquiesced to my wishes and has never put pressure on me to work, instead working more hours himself to provide me with the lifestyle I want.
So I guess I kind of feel guilty that he's sacrificed way more in this marriage than I have. Because of what he's done for my mom, sister and nephew, I would never even think of leaving him even if I caught him cheating on me. So what's the harm if I allow him this vice? Coupled with the fact that my wish to have a lot of kids is partly the reason why we don't have sex as often, I guess I'm seeing this as a way to even things out and make me feel like this isn't such a one-sided relationship. My husband didn't put it that way when he brought this up, but that's how I'm spinning it to myself. It may sound weird, but that's how I feel.
EDIT 2: See my post on page 8 for an update on how things turned out.
Last edited by Maya627; 08-23-2011 at 09:21 PM.