I need help with sustaining my marriage - Page 4 - Talk About Marriage
Sex in Marriage Sexual 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.

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post #46 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 12:12 PM
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

What a horrible, heartbreaking story. My heart bleeds for you. I wish there was something profound and earth-moving that would make all the difference and would help.

I will echo what the others have said and do not give up on therapy and counseling and such.

Please understand that neither I nor any of the other posters are counselors or therapists or any other kind of professional. We are just regular people that offer our thoughts and perspectives to others over the anonymous medium of the internet.

Some of us have been around the block a few times and have seen many things over the years. I am 53 years old and have worked in a professional where I encounter various assault victims (again, I am not any kind of therapist or counselor)

Please bear with me here for what I am about to say is something that I have witnessed over the years, but it is likely not what you are going to want to hear.

Many marriages and relationships crumble following a sexual assault (or other major trauma for that matter). Both you and he are different people now than you were the day before the attack. Following the attack, you changed drastically. He changed drastically. Both of your worlds were shaken to their foundations.

God bless you for surviving and getting through it and coming out the other side. God bless him for being there for you and standing beside you and working with you all these years. You both are amazing people deserving of credit and praise.

But here we are none the less........

Where I am going with this is you have both been profoundly changed by this event. The dynamics of what your relationship was at the start of your engagement has been dramatically changed and upended. You're both different people now and that change in your relationship dynamics is not working for either one of you. Your current state of the relationship sounds toxic and heartbreaking for both of you.

I understand you wanting to save and salvage your marriage, but it may not be in either one of your best interests. You are both suffering and it doesn't sound like it's gotten any better over the years and if it is coming close to violence, I'd say it's getting worse.

You may both be better off dissolving this amicably and with professional guidance to help you both dissolve the marriage with as much mutual compassion and respect and with as little bad blood and hard feelings as possible.

That is the bad news.

Please please please read my next post for the possible silver lining in all of this -
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post #47 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 12:32 PM
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

As bad as my first post sounds, there is hope here.

Remember I said that the people you both were and the relationship you had prior to the attack were profoundly changed forever.

HOWEVER, that does not mean that you have been left incapable of having a good, warm, close, intimate and even sexual relationship with someone else in the future.

Remember you had a preexisting relationship with him that was profoundly changed.

That doesn't mean that you are tainted or that you are forever incapable of an intimate and sexual relationship with someone else going into the future.

If you and he were to divorce, the next person you meet will be meeting you as you are today and you will be meeting the person that the new guy is today. It would be hitting the "reset" button and would be a fresh start. You would both be starting fresh and both starting from Square One and not having the rug pulled out from under you by a profoundly life-changing event.

To put it bluntly, you wouldn't be having the baggage and disruption of that event changing everything.

You may not necessarily have the same sexual hangups and inhibitions and such with someone else that you do with your current H.

And a different person may not necessarily have the frustrations and exasperations that your current H does.

I know if may seem counterintuitive and you may feel like you will always feel the way you do now and will always have the same issues and such, but I guarantee you, any time you're with someone new, you hit the 'reset' button and many of your pasts sexual nuances are in fact different.

It's heartbreakingly unfair and too bad that it is like this, but it is a realty.

As I said in my first post above, many marriages and relationships fail following a sexual assault. .....but that doesn't mean that subsequent marriages and relationships are necessarily doomed to fail as well. Sometimes the next relationship starts with a clean slate and goes fine.

Now it will always be incumbent on you to continue with your therapies and treatments of course and yes you will still carry your physical and emotional scars. But here's the thing - WE ALL HAVE OUR OWN PHYSICAL AND EMOTIONAL SCARS. None of us get through life completely unscathed. Some just get more and some get less, but we all have scars and baggage.

You and your current H are floundering at handling the physical and emotional scars and baggage that were placed upon you during your relationship.

There is a chance that when you meet someone new while already carrying your baggage, it may not have such a big and negative impact as when it fell onto you in the middle of your current relationship.

Again, I'm not a professional and I am certainly not a fortune teller or clairvoyant that can read the future. But I have seen exactly this happen time and time again where a terrible trauma cripples the current relationship - but the next one does fine.

Neither you nor your H are lost causes by any means here. You just may not be right for each other following this terrible trauma any more.
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post #48 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 12:56 PM
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

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Originally Posted by picpea View Post
....I wish I could relax with my husband, and not constantly be worried about how my body is positioned, what part he can see or what he might accidentally touch. Your comment is right though... He isn't helping. He doesn't seem interested in trying to fix it, so my posting all of this may have been a waste... He won't talk to me about it and gets more distant by the day. He hasn't even bothered to come home yet tonight (midnight).
For someone like yourself most Sex Therapists would provide you with instructions on Sensate Focus exercises and forms of self-hypnosis or affirmations on helping you relax to the touch of your husband and to improve your self image enough to allow you to expose your body to your H.

A good sex therapist would also give your H exercises and instruction on what he can do to become committed to rebuilding the physical connection in your marriage.

Good luck.
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post #49 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 02:31 PM
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

Usually I just lurk here, however your thread made me want to create an account. I have gone back and forth about posting this for a couple days.

I think I have a pretty good idea of what your trauma entailed by reading between the lines. Years ago, there was a string of women being forced into human trafficking (many still are, hundreds in the last few years). I remember it because the method of obtaining the women was different than a classic player-pimp. These women were stalked, attacked in their home while alone, raped, deemed “worthy” to be sold, taken to a house or hotel and beat with heated up metal, whipped, chocked and forced to perform, then branded (burned with hot metal or cut with knifes or razor blades) with a number or pimps ID. Then locked in a room day in and day out and forced to have sex with dozens of men who came in, not being allowed to eat until they had serviced enough men. After that some where sold off and some were so broken they remained prostitutes under the pimp that abducted them in the first place. Some didn’t make “the cut” and suffered genital mutilation, threats on them and their family, and released, other’s ran away or were found.

Related or not, reading your thread and the small details that are sort of hidden throughout reminded my of this, and I haven’t thought about it in years.

I say this because years ago, a young woman came to my university and gave a presentation. She was one of the women who was involved in this and wanted to share her story, to save other women, spread the word and help people understand the reality of it. If I can find a video of it I will link in, in case you would like to see it. It may be too difficult and very trigger heavy. I remember no phones or cameras were allowed, so I may not be able to find it.

The point I was trying to make is, this woman turned her nightmare into something that she could use to help other people. She could talk to other women who were going through the same thing. She could help people understand the reality of “modern day slavery” and that it IS going on here. She helped people learn how to help friends and family who were suffering. Not only did this help other people, but being an advocate also helped her. Maybe, it is something that you would benefit from.

One thing that she said stood out to me and your words let my mind recall it. The woman revealed some of her scars, what I remember is her back that was covered in thin, long scars that were caused by heated up wire, and initials that had been branded with a cattle brander into her arm or shoulder. She said (may be a little bit off):

“These scars are a story of where I have been, not where I am nor who I am, but where I am going and what I have overcome. They are a story of my courage and my strength to fight back and regain control of my life. Strength, courage and life are never something to be ashamed of. The longer I hid the more power my abusers had. Silence gives them strength. Silence feeds them. Do not be silent. Do not hide. Be proud that you beat them. YOU won.”

The presentation was not mandatory, but so many people wanted to see it that the theatre that held 1,200 people was full and people were standing at the back of the room and sitting on the stairs and floor. I have never been in a room with 1,200+ people that was so silent. You could have heard a paperclip drop. After the presentation was done the silence remained and the halls felt differently that day. The impact was immense. Of the hundreds of lectures and presentations I watched, that one stands out the most.
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post #50 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 02:33 PM
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

Also, if some form of genital mutilation was done to you (I cannot quite tell from your posts but pretty sure) there may now be reconstructive options that were not previously available. If I recall correctly you said they could not fix the function, which may be true, but go for second, third, tenth opinions IF you want to. Reconstructive genital surgery, especially for women, has come a LONG way recently. Let’s just say, I have a friend who was assigned male at birth but identified female. She had “bottom surgery” last year and starting from scratch doctors made a perfect specimen that is indistinguishable from any other woman. For the record, she does have feeling throughout every part. If you have not discussed it with a doctor in recent years and if you WANT to, it may be worth it to you. Again, only if that is something that you want to do. You are beautiful regardless.
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post #51 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 10:16 PM Thread Starter
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

@Anon Pink
I don't like to say that my trauma was worse than someone else's, they are all bad. Sometimes I find myself sinking into a pity party when I let myself think that my experience was worse than other people who try to help me. I get into a no one understands, no one has been there, no one can help mindset. It also makes me feel like I'm downplaying other people's experiences and interpretations.

I want to have sex for me, for us. I enjoyed sex once upon a time. I guess I could call it a benefit that I did have sex before and did enjoy it. I can barely remember it, but I know I enjoyed it and I know it can be fun and connecting. I want to feel like a woman again. I want to connect with my husband. If my husband would be fully content either way, I would still want it.

I don't get turned on and feel like I need him right then and there. It physically hurts to get the physical feelings associated with being turned on so my body doesn't go there or all bets are off. I want him because I want to be close to him and no amount of cuddling or kissing satisfies that need. There is no pleasure from it so it isn't a physical pleasure seeking thing anymore, more emotional...

My husband... he is a good man. He is very sensitive. There was a period after my trauma that all I felt was pain and fear. I didn't cry, unless it was from pain. I didn't get upset, I didn't laugh or smile. I didn't talk. I was essentially emotionless. I didn't feel human. My husband was an emotional wreck during that time, which was to be expected. I don't know where I was going with that, I guess that sometimes my husband has seemed to be more affected than me. I love my husband, and he has done his best to support me. He doesn't know every detail (not that he needs to) because he couldn't handle it (he made that decision not me). When I had to testify in court he left the room part way through.

His biggest problem is "mind movies". From what he does know he replays it over and over in his head and his imagination gets the best of filling in the blanks. Unfortunately the reality isn't any better. He does NOT look at my body or touch my body and think it is disgusting. What he DOES do is look at a scar or touch a scar and think about what happened to cause that. And can't get that out of his mind. Hearing the words "when I touch you there I imagine you being ______" was not easy to hear.

My husband had a great life before this. He was raised by amazing parents, no one in his family had problems or even divorced, no one had kids out of wedlock, drank, did drugs, no one was hurt, he had never known anyone who had been assaulted. If you would ask him what his worst experience was he wouldn't know what to say (I had asked him). So when my assault happened he was experiencing something he had never come close to experiencing. He didn't and doesn't know how to handle it. He went to therapy with me and alone in the beginning but doesn't go now.

It has resulted in him avoiding parts of my body and me making sure he avoids those parts of my body. I feel more comfortable showing those areas to my doctors than my husband. Sometimes I feel comfortable enough to go out in a tank top or similar that shows some back, but if I were like that at home and my husband comes home, I cover up immediately. I don't want to upset him.

Control is really hard for me. Not being able to control what goes on in his head, or how he reacts or feels. I have a hard time being in situations that I can't control or predict.

I was upset last night when I was writing so some of my words might have come out the wrong way.

"Sometimes I wish I had died instead. It feels like it would have been easier for everyone." - That is still pretty correct. That desire isn't high enough that I'm not longer walking the planet. There has been a lot (maybe once a month nowadays) of contemplation but no attempts. I say "wish" because I never wanted to live. When I was taken to the hospital it was by ambulance and I remember thinking that I hoped I'd die. I had a surgery and afterwards was in and out of sleep for a few days, every time I work up I wondered why because I did not want to be alive. I remember a doctor saying something about me and that I was fighting to be alive, all I could think was... no, no I'm not.

"My husband has the option to hold me, but he doesn't really want to." - That was written incorrectly. He does want to, he's a very cuddly, physical guy (or was). The way we can cuddle or be close feels limited because I feel the need to keep certain body parts away from him. Lately he has been very distant. Sleeping on the couch, not wanting to touch me at all, not wanting to spend time together, not coming home until very late. So lately he "has the option to hold me, but he doesn't really want to".

"He doesn't want to work on it, and I don't think I'm worth it to him." - I mean, he stopped going to therapy alone and as a couple. He doesn't want to work on it anymore, at least with doctors and therapists. He has essentially given up and in his own words said it wasn't going to get any better. If I wasn't worth it he wouldn't have stuck around this long, that was emotions talking. Worth has nothing to do with it, he just seems to have given up.

I'm sorry, that was way longer than I intended it to be.
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post #52 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 10:45 PM
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

Picpea

You can say anything you want, and change anything you want. And type as long as you want. Nothing is too long.

This medium is distant, impersonal, but the least we can do is offer to listen to all you wish to say, and any way you wish to say it.
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post #53 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 10:54 PM Thread Starter
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

@mary35

What you wrote felt very familiar. It hurt, to read, but it wasn't surprising to read I suppose.

I know that my husband suffered and is suffering as well. I don't ever want to downplay how he feels so if I have, I haven't meant to. I feel terrible that he hurts "because of me" so I can sort of understand how he feels.

I didn't remember it until you mentioned it but in the first year after my assault my husband did say things like he could make it better, love conquers all and that he wanted to "fix" me. He had never gone through anything even remotely bad in his life, he didn't know that he couldn't fix this. So you are probably right that now he is realizing he can't fix it and is lost and overwhelmed. He still holds a lot of anger towards the men who did it. He has always had more anger towards them than me, I think.

I don't want to feel like I'm causing my husband pain. I have always felt that if he had walked away, yes he would still hurt but not this much. He wouldn't have the reminders, he could have moved on at least to some degree. He could have found someone else by now, had the life he wanted. Which kills me to think about.

I feel like, if I give up my husband then I have nothing left. They won, they got everything. Everything in my life changed, he has been my only constant and I hold onto him for dear life.

He is a good man and I feel like I am destroying him. I feel like I shouldn't have had him in the first place and now I've ruined his life. I know it's not my fault, but I still go there. Turning him into a man who "cheats" or almost hits a woman, those are the type of people he has gotten into physical fights with for disrespecting women. Now he (probably) feels like he is one of them. Some of that is on me, like giving him a free pass for outside sex. Which I honestly thought would or could help us. I never in a million years actually wanted that.

He has said, words from his own mouth, that he would feel worse leaving me because of the type of person that would make him and because it wouldn't be fair to me that he could move on and I couldn't. He goes on a PTSD forum sometimes, I'm not sure if he still does but he did a lot years ago. He read a lot of stories about a couple splitting up and the other party killing themselves or going very deep into a dark hole. He fears that. I may wonder why I'm still here, or sometimes when I take medication for a moment I think I could just take the whole bottle and be done with it, but I would never actually go there. I haven't yet.

I feel like if we call it quits, even just for a break, that's the end of us. That he will see that life can be better and not want this life again. Or that he won't feel bad because he didn't end it and won't have any desire to come back, maybe he just needs me to cut the cord. I can see him being happy with someone else, he could have everything that he wanted. I can't see myself ever being with someone else... Because if I can't do it with my husband who I love and loved before this happened, I won't be able to do it with someone else, a stranger. He's the only one that I want to be with... Letting go of him is terrifying, upsetting and feelings lonely before it's even happened. In my heart, I know if I let him go then he isn't coming back...
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post #54 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 10:56 PM
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

Quote:
Originally Posted by picpea View Post
It has resulted in him avoiding parts of my body and me making sure he avoids those parts of my body. I feel more comfortable showing those areas to my doctors than my husband. Sometimes I feel comfortable enough to go out in a tank top or similar that shows some back, but if I were like that at home and my husband comes home, I cover up immediately. I don't want to upset him.
I think you sound really defeated from what I've read so far. I feel that way sometimes when my depression gets into full gear. It can be difficult to snap out of. But you need to mentally tell the world to 'feck off, this is my body now, either deal with it or piss off.' And that goes for your husband. We don't get stronger by hiding our demons. We need slap them around a bit. So go outside, wearing whatever you want and wear the same around your husband. Hiding yourself from him and others is just giving power to your scars and your negative body image.
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post #55 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 11:01 PM
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

I think letting him go . . . could open the door to eventually bring the right person into your life, someone who could love and nurture you exactly as you are, trauma and all.

So, so, so sorry for the injustice that was done to you, picpea.

One of the deepest feminine pleasures is when a man stands full, present, and unreactive in the midst of his woman's emotional storms. When he stays present with her, and loves her through the layers of wildness and closure, then she feels his trustability, and she can relax. -- David Deida, The Way of the Superior Man
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post #56 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 11:26 PM
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

Stop apologizing. Write, write and write and keep writing, but apologizing...that you should stop doing.


Quote:
Originally Posted by picpea View Post
@Anon Pink
I don't like to say that my trauma was worse than someone else's, they are all bad. Sometimes I find myself sinking into a pity party when I let myself think that my experience was worse than other people who try to help me. I get into a no one understands, no one has been there, no one can help mindset. It also makes me feel like I'm downplaying other people's experiences and interpretations.

I want to have sex for me, for us. I enjoyed sex once upon a time. I guess I could call it a benefit that I did have sex before and did enjoy it. I can barely remember it, but I know I enjoyed it and I know it can be fun and connecting. I want to feel like a woman again. I want to connect with my husband. If my husband would be fully content either way, I would still want it.
So sex is a goal post for you. It means the old you is still there. The woman who lead a full and carefree life is alive. She IS still there and alive but she is different. Different happens because life happens, if it wasn't one thing it could have been another thing. This woman today, having difficulty feeling all that she wants to feel is a woman in transition, not the end result.




Quote:
I don't get turned on and feel like I need him right then and there. It physically hurts to get the physical feelings associated with being turned on so my body doesn't go there or all bets are off. I want him because I want to be close to him and no amount of cuddling or kissing satisfies that need. There is no pleasure from it so it isn't a physical pleasure seeking thing anymore, more emotional...
If I understand this correctly, being aroused caused physical pain? The pain prevents your body from remaining aroused or building arousal. I assume the pain is due to the genital swelling associated with arousal and this swelling pulls on scar tissue. You've mentioned your body builds scar tissue abundantly and this is problematic because an over-produced scar not only causes pain, but it prevents positive sensation as well.

Physically, arousal is something you probably should avoid until you've seen enough specialists and had the scar removal surgeries. I don't know if you live in the US, it doesn't sound like though. There are various victims foundations that will help fund corrective surgeries. If that's not an avenue, I highly encourage you to place corrective surgery on the priority list. Above almost everything else.

Your husband probably can't bring himself to seek sex with you because he knows it would cause you pain. You must know that about your husband, right? The thought that sex means you're in pain and there is nothing he can do to prevent that pain would make him averse to having sex with you. He would avoid it stronger than you might avoid it.

Quote:
My husband... he is a good man. He is very sensitive. There was a period after my trauma that all I felt was pain and fear. I didn't cry, unless it was from pain. I didn't get upset, I didn't laugh or smile. I didn't talk. I was essentially emotionless. I didn't feel human. My husband was an emotional wreck during that time, which was to be expected. I don't know where I was going with that, I guess that sometimes my husband has seemed to be more affected than me. I love my husband, and he has done his best to support me. He doesn't know every detail (not that he needs to) because he couldn't handle it (he made that decision not me). When I had to testify in court he left the room part way through.

His biggest problem is "mind movies". From what he does know he replays it over and over in his head and his imagination gets the best of filling in the blanks. Unfortunately the reality isn't any better. He does NOT look at my body or touch my body and think it is disgusting. What he DOES do is look at a scar or touch a scar and think about what happened to cause that. And can't get that out of his mind. Hearing the words "when I touch you there I imagine you being ______" was not easy to hear.

My husband had a great life before this. He was raised by amazing parents, no one in his family had problems or even divorced, no one had kids out of wedlock, drank, did drugs, no one was hurt, he had never known anyone who had been assaulted. If you would ask him what his worst experience was he wouldn't know what to say (I had asked him). So when my assault happened he was experiencing something he had never come close to experiencing. He didn't and doesn't know how to handle it. He went to therapy with me and alone in the beginning but doesn't go now.

It has resulted in him avoiding parts of my body and me making sure he avoids those parts of my body.

Now see, here is where I'm going to totally disagree with you. He's not a good man if you have to hide the truth of what you went through to save his sensitive disposition. If you could survive having it don't to you, he can damn well survive knowing exactly what the **** was done!!!!

God this pisses me off! You lived it! You were there! It ****ing happened to you! And he can't even know too many details? Sit his ass down and give him a play by play because if your marriage has any hope, and frankly I'm doubting it right now, you have to stop protecting him and start relying on his strength. Do you realize you are HIS strength instead of him being yours?

Mr. Picpea needs to man the **** up!


Quote:
I feel more comfortable showing those areas to my doctors than my husband. Sometimes I feel comfortable enough to go out in a tank top or similar that shows some back, but if I were like that at home and my husband comes home, I cover up immediately. I don't want to upset him.
Too damn bad! Because you survived you have scars. If you had died, there would be no scars and your body would be decomposing. Morbid, right? But true none the less. You survived. If he can't bear to look upon the evidence that you didn't die he is missing the fact that...you didn't die. You survived.

Stop hiding your scars.
Stop protecting your husband.
You survived something horrific. He can survive knowing it.



Quote:
Control is really hard for me. Not being able to control what goes on in his head, or how he reacts or feels. I have a hard time being in situations that I can't control or predict.
Do you feel this need to control the thoughts and feelings of everyone around you? Are you familiar with the terms "co-dependent" and "enabling?"

I get that you need to feel safe and not being able to predict how he reacts might trigger you to feel unsafe, but there is a difference between needing to feel safe even though he may be upset and needing to feel that he won't ever be upset. Live happens and people get upset. Traffic, crappy bosses, dogs pooping on lawns...upsetting but not unsafe.

Unsafe, meaning you feel endangered physically or emotionally. You have always felt unsafe, emotionally, with your husband because you filter what details he knows about your trauma. Because you filter for him, because you edit for him, because you smooth out as many things as you can for him so he doesn't get upset, it means you don't trust him. You don't trust that him being upset, angry, raging, about what happened to you won't harm you in some way. And that doesn't make sense does it?

Do you really think if he knew the details his reaction would endanger you in any way?



Quote:
I was upset last night when I was writing so some of my words might have come out the wrong way.

"Sometimes I wish I had died instead. It feels like it would have been easier for everyone." - That is still pretty correct. That desire isn't high enough that I'm not longer walking the planet. There has been a lot (maybe once a month nowadays) of contemplation but no attempts. I say "wish" because I never wanted to live. When I was taken to the hospital it was by ambulance and I remember thinking that I hoped I'd die. I had a surgery and afterwards was in and out of sleep for a few days, every time I work up I wondered why because I did not want to be alive. I remember a doctor saying something about me and that I was fighting to be alive, all I could think was... no, no I'm not.

But you didn't die. You survived and now you need to live.

Surviving means you didn't die. Living means your life has meaning.


Quote:
"My husband has the option to hold me, but he doesn't really want to." - That was written incorrectly. He does want to, he's a very cuddly, physical guy (or was). The way we can cuddle or be close feels limited because I feel the need to keep certain body parts away from him. Lately he has been very distant. Sleeping on the couch, not wanting to touch me at all, not wanting to spend time together, not coming home until very late. So lately he "has the option to hold me, but he doesn't really want to".

"He doesn't want to work on it, and I don't think I'm worth it to him." - I mean, he stopped going to therapy alone and as a couple. He doesn't want to work on it anymore, at least with doctors and therapists. He has essentially given up and in his own words said it wasn't going to get any better. If I wasn't worth it he wouldn't have stuck around this long, that was emotions talking. Worth has nothing to do with it, he just seems to have given up.

I'm sorry, that was way longer than I intended it to be.


What would you say if I insisted you tell your husband every detail and start showering with him?

Everytime you hide yourself, you stop living. Every time you buy into this absurd idea that your husband needs your protection, you stop living.



You came here to try to save your marriage and like almost everyone here, myself included, are discovering that to save your marriage you must first save yourself. To heal your marriage you must first heal yourself.

Don't hide
Don't protect
Don't pretend

"Some women are blessed with multi-orgasmic ability for a reason and I'm damn sure not going to waste a blessing" ~FrenchFry

"Vaginas are tricky creatures." ~Lucy999
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post #57 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 11:34 PM Thread Starter
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

@WilliamM

I haven't read into or done any type of looking at FGM. It is a massive trigger for me, even just reading FGM spelled out fully. As soon as I saw it in what you wrote I debated reading it at all. Nothing bad towards you, it's just extremely difficult for me. I saw it soon after you posted it but just couldn't fully read it or respond. Again, nothing bad against you and I know there is another reply written closer to the end that mentions it as well so I need to prepare myself before I go down there.

That is an interesting note about counsellors, though it does make sense. Finding the right one is hard... I need to keep trying.

Every time I write something I think that I'm just going to write a little snippet, then I'm done and it's a long, blabbering, rambling, mess. It does help a bit, though.

@oldshirt

You are right that we are not the same people that we were before. If I were to describe him and myself before and after, without using physical traits it probably wouldn't look like the same people. I don't want to sound like a broken record from my last post so I won't repeat my sob story on not wanting to let him go...

I can't imagine myself ever being with another man or being intimate with another man. It scares me to think about. I don't know how I could start over with someone else and go through this over again. I've got to a point where everyone in my bubble knows to some degree what happened. I hated having to explain myself to people, even a little.

I can't help but think that if my husband didn't want to be with me or couldn't then no one could. If I was with someone else I for some reason that man was easier to be with, especially sexually, I would feel absolutely terrible.
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post #58 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-19-2017, 11:42 PM
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

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Originally Posted by picpea View Post
@mary35

What you wrote felt very familiar. It hurt, to read, but it wasn't surprising to read I suppose.

I know that my husband suffered and is suffering as well. I don't ever want to downplay how he feels so if I have, I haven't meant to. I feel terrible that he hurts "because of me" so I can sort of understand how he feels.

I didn't remember it until you mentioned it but in the first year after my assault my husband did say things like he could make it better, love conquers all and that he wanted to "fix" me. He had never gone through anything even remotely bad in his life, he didn't know that he couldn't fix this. So you are probably right that now he is realizing he can't fix it and is lost and overwhelmed. He still holds a lot of anger towards the men who did it. He has always had more anger towards them than me, I think.

I don't want to feel like I'm causing my husband pain. I have always felt that if he had walked away, yes he would still hurt but not this much. He wouldn't have the reminders, he could have moved on at least to some degree. He could have found someone else by now, had the life he wanted. Which kills me to think about.

I feel like, if I give up my husband then I have nothing left. They won, they got everything. Everything in my life changed, he has been my only constant and I hold onto him for dear life.

He is a good man and I feel like I am destroying him. I feel like I shouldn't have had him in the first place and now I've ruined his life. I know it's not my fault, but I still go there. Turning him into a man who "cheats" or almost hits a woman, those are the type of people he has gotten into physical fights with for disrespecting women. Now he (probably) feels like he is one of them. Some of that is on me, like giving him a free pass for outside sex. Which I honestly thought would or could help us. I never in a million years actually wanted that.

He has said, words from his own mouth, that he would feel worse leaving me because of the type of person that would make him and because it wouldn't be fair to me that he could move on and I couldn't. He goes on a PTSD forum sometimes, I'm not sure if he still does but he did a lot years ago. He read a lot of stories about a couple splitting up and the other party killing themselves or going very deep into a dark hole. He fears that. I may wonder why I'm still here, or sometimes when I take medication for a moment I think I could just take the whole bottle and be done with it, but I would never actually go there. I haven't yet.

I feel like if we call it quits, even just for a break, that's the end of us. That he will see that life can be better and not want this life again. Or that he won't feel bad because he didn't end it and won't have any desire to come back, maybe he just needs me to cut the cord. I can see him being happy with someone else, he could have everything that he wanted. I can't see myself ever being with someone else... Because if I can't do it with my husband who I love and loved before this happened, I won't be able to do it with someone else, a stranger. He's the only one that I want to be with... Letting go of him is terrifying, upsetting and feelings lonely before it's even happened. In my heart, I know if I let him go then he isn't coming back...

This is heart breaking. You are carrying everything on your shoulders and it doesn't belong on your shoulders.

Can you show this to your husband? Can he know the very intimate details of how worthless you feel because he can't handle what happened to you?

You're in a really bad place right now, but it won't last. I promise it won't stay bad.

"Some women are blessed with multi-orgasmic ability for a reason and I'm damn sure not going to waste a blessing" ~FrenchFry

"Vaginas are tricky creatures." ~Lucy999
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post #59 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 12:48 AM
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I need help with sustaining my marriage

Hi @picpea

I'm not sure I can offer much to you but I just wanted to say that I truly admire your courage. You have been through such a trauma and yet you are still here... still fighting to get better. You are a warrior.

I am a CSA survivor ... nothing as brutal as what you must have endured but I am truly touched by your story and I do hope that you can find a way to a happier path.

My dad had a drinking buddy that would come over once a week. I was sent to give them fresh beers when dad hollered up the stairs for another round. Inevitably dad would pass out, and his buddy would make his move on me. He'd sit me on his lap... call me his little girlfriend, touch me and eventually force me to perform oral for him.

He threatened me if I were to tell... made me fear waking my father if I made too much fuss or cried too loudly. I was 7-9 years old and crying while feeling suffocated by a drunk smelly adult was terrifying. To this day that smell of beer and sweat and cigarettes makes me want to vomit.

My scars were only emotional, but they were awful.

When I finally dated, my first 2 relationships ended because I would not give BJs... I just couldn't do it. One BF used it to humiliate me by announcing loudly to friends how great I was at it (knowing I wouldn't) ... he ended up dumping me over it. The other BF cheated on me to get his BJs from other girls that were willing.

When I left for college my anxiety got the better of me and I started having awful flashbacks and nightmares. I would wake up in the middle of the night gasping for air reliving that suffocating feeling.

Through all of that time, even though I had tried to pleasure myself I could not reach orgasm. The build up sensations reminded me of that uncomfortable stomach drop feeling I would get when my abuser would grope me and I would just shut down completely. I felt so broken... I just wanted to be normal.

Since my sleep disturbances were getting so bad I had to leave school on a medical leave... I just could not function. I finally sought help with a great therapist who specialized in CSA and rape survivors.

She helped me work through the abuse first... what happened, the shame, the fear, the anger, the triggers. After I was strong enough then she moved into the sex therapy to help me learn to love myself.

It was really hard but I did get there after a lot of work. I can now not only climax but multiples. I could give a loving BJ under the right conditions (I still prefer it to be my idea, and I cannot handle it being rough or firm pressure on my head) but a light caressing touch I enjoy.

But the biggest thing is I actually like giving that pleasure now. And a huge part of that was from when I met Mr HB after all that therapy I told him everything. He knew every detail. I needed him to accept what had happened since there were still triggers occasionally and how could he be sensitive to them if he didn't know?

Anyway, I just wanted to share that I understand a little of what you're going through... and please don't give up. You are still you and you are not ruining your H. He has choices too.

He needs to accept what happened to you and come to terms one way or another. But you cannot protect him anymore than he could protect you. It is possible, if he is weak, that he may not be able to handle it all once he knows everything. And that's ok, because you deserve someone who can and will.

You are a survivor... a warrior battling her way out of hell. Don't give up now.

Gentle (((hugs))) to you @picpea.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Last edited by heartbroken50; 04-20-2017 at 12:55 AM.
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post #60 of 78 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 06:25 AM
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Re: I need help with sustaining my marriage

Quote:
Originally Posted by picpea View Post
@mary35

What you wrote felt very familiar. It hurt, to read, but it wasn't surprising to read I suppose.

I know that my husband suffered and is suffering as well. I don't ever want to downplay how he feels so if I have, I haven't meant to. I feel terrible that he hurts "because of me" so I can sort of understand how he feels.

I didn't remember it until you mentioned it but in the first year after my assault my husband did say things like he could make it better, love conquers all and that he wanted to "fix" me. He had never gone through anything even remotely bad in his life, he didn't know that he couldn't fix this. So you are probably right that now he is realizing he can't fix it and is lost and overwhelmed. He still holds a lot of anger towards the men who did it. He has always had more anger towards them than me, I think.

I don't want to feel like I'm causing my husband pain. I have always felt that if he had walked away, yes he would still hurt but not this much. He wouldn't have the reminders, he could have moved on at least to some degree. He could have found someone else by now, had the life he wanted. Which kills me to think about.

I feel like, if I give up my husband then I have nothing left. They won, they got everything. Everything in my life changed, he has been my only constant and I hold onto him for dear life.

He is a good man and I feel like I am destroying him. I feel like I shouldn't have had him in the first place and now I've ruined his life. I know it's not my fault, but I still go there. Turning him into a man who "cheats" or almost hits a woman, those are the type of people he has gotten into physical fights with for disrespecting women. Now he (probably) feels like he is one of them. Some of that is on me, like giving him a free pass for outside sex. Which I honestly thought would or could help us. I never in a million years actually wanted that.

He has said, words from his own mouth, that he would feel worse leaving me because of the type of person that would make him and because it wouldn't be fair to me that he could move on and I couldn't. He goes on a PTSD forum sometimes, I'm not sure if he still does but he did a lot years ago. He read a lot of stories about a couple splitting up and the other party killing themselves or going very deep into a dark hole. He fears that. I may wonder why I'm still here, or sometimes when I take medication for a moment I think I could just take the whole bottle and be done with it, but I would never actually go there. I haven't yet.

I feel like if we call it quits, even just for a break, that's the end of us. That he will see that life can be better and not want this life again. Or that he won't feel bad because he didn't end it and won't have any desire to come back, maybe he just needs me to cut the cord. I can see him being happy with someone else, he could have everything that he wanted. I can't see myself ever being with someone else... Because if I can't do it with my husband who I love and loved before this happened, I won't be able to do it with someone else, a stranger. He's the only one that I want to be with... Letting go of him is terrifying, upsetting and feelings lonely before it's even happened. In my heart, I know if I let him go then he isn't coming back...
I understand! You are not in a place to let go right now! I wish the best for you and your husband and hope you can find the answers you need to make your relationship work for the both of you! Cyber HUG!
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