Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage - Page 10 - 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 #136 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 05:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Diana7 View Post
I think you are seeing what you want to see because its what YOU want. You can't bring yourself to think that just maybe you are merely making your wife feel inadequate and not good enough.


How would you know how he’s making his wife feel since you are NOT his wife?

Do you read minds?

I don’t get why OP is being attacked. People are projecting too much.

Op, my advice would be to find a MC who can help you and your wife. You guys need to communicate and compromise. I’m a woman, and I don’t think you’re asking for porn star style sex.

Ps. Don’t take some of the criticism to heart. Assess whether it’s useful or not and just forget about those that YOU deem are disrespectful or far out.

Good luck!!!

(Btw the idea of listing his preferences as “porn star sex” makes some of you come off as insecure.... just sayin).
One of the few posts that is talking any sense!
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post #137 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 05:22 PM
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

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Or he's sensing that she's not "present" or willing to be "in the moment" with her husband during sex. Do not underestimate the effect of earlier religious conditioning and how thoughts about what someone used to do, and "escaped from", can mess things up forever. Basically not recover from without deliberate effort, and even then, perhaps not. Not that I have any experience at all with this.

Or, of course, he may simply be looking for an excuse for her not meeting his "needs." But I don't think we need to pile on. I think we should be considering both sides of the equation, and frankly, I think we need to see a lot less of this "Well he/she's just not into sex at all and you can't change that" stuff. I think that's lead to far too many divorces of people who otherwise have been highly compatible and could have had a happy marriage except that nobody knew how to deal with sex issues and the polarization of the sex issue created a chasm too wide to cross. The goal should be to narrow that chasm, and that doesn't mean minimizing the issue by saying one person is simply expecting the unreasonable or impossible.

I pray, I literally pray, that 3 or 4 years down the road I'm posting here as a success story and not a work in progress. This guy is in his 50s; he may have 10 years more to play with than I do. If I'm going to be crazy enough to think things can get better, much better, for my wife and I, I'd like to see the OP granted a bit of slack too.
Unless I missed it I am not sure he has mentioned that she is religious at all?

I have learnt in life that you can be content and happy and thankful without having to have absolutely everything that you think you must have. His discontentment may just kill that marriage unless he starts dealing with it.
He claims that he wants to do this for her, for their marriage, but its for him, he is the only one who is discontent.
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post #138 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 05:25 PM
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

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Or he's sensing that she's not "present" or willing to be "in the moment" with her husband during sex. Do not underestimate the effect of earlier religious conditioning and how thoughts about what someone used to do, and "escaped from", can mess things up forever. Basically not recover from without deliberate effort, and even then, perhaps not. Not that I have any experience at all with this.

Or, of course, he may simply be looking for an excuse for her not meeting his "needs." But I don't think we need to pile on. I think we should be considering both sides of the equation, and frankly, I think we need to see a lot less of this "Well he/she's just not into sex at all and you can't change that" stuff. I think that's lead to far too many divorces of people who otherwise have been highly compatible and could have had a happy marriage except that nobody knew how to deal with sex issues and the polarization of the sex issue created a chasm too wide to cross. The goal should be to narrow that chasm, and that doesn't mean minimizing the issue by saying one person is simply expecting the unreasonable or impossible.

I pray, I literally pray, that 3 or 4 years down the road I'm posting here as a success story and not a work in progress. This guy is in his 50s; he may have 10 years more to play with than I do. If I'm going to be crazy enough to think things can get better, much better, for my wife and I, I'd like to see the OP granted a bit of slack too.
I think she is perfectly happy to have sex with him, they have sex 3 times a week. Just not what HE wants to do. If he isn't careful he will loose that as well.
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post #139 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 05:37 PM
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

95% good life 5% sucky life is a lot like this quote from one of my favorite artists:

"Well, anyway, back then life was going swell and everything was just peachy!
Except, of course, for the undeniable fact that every single morning
My mother would make me a big ol' bowl of sauerkraut for breakfast"

Just how much "sauerkraut" is a guy expected to eat?
Is "sauerkraut" really good enough?
Will she feel better about herself when he stops eating "sauerkraut"?
I agree that every bowl is just one step closer to the day he stops.
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post #140 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 05:44 PM
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95% good life 5% sucky life is a lot like this quote from one of my favorite artists:

"Well, anyway, back then life was going swell and everything was just peachy!
Except, of course, for the undeniable fact that every single morning
My mother would make me a big ol' bowl of sauerkraut for breakfast"

Just how much "sauerkraut" is a guy expected to eat?
Is "sauerkraut" really good enough?
Will she feel better about herself when he stops eating "sauerkraut"?
I agree that every bowl is just one step closer to the day he stops.
And he is supposed to be happy about that bowl of "sauerkraut" and eat it with a smile on his face.
Some people can be happy settling for what they are given. Others strive for more. Either way, it's their choice with what they can live with.
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post #141 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 05:49 PM
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

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Originally Posted by Diana7 View Post
Unless I missed it I am not sure he has mentioned that she is religious at all?

I have learnt in life that you can be content and happy and thankful without having to have absolutely everything that you think you must have. His discontentment may just kill that marriage unless he starts dealing with it.
He claims that he wants to do this for her, for their marriage, but its for him, he is the only one who is discontent.
He did previously mention, in passing, that it might be a "religious hangup" if I recall correctly.

I think you're making an assumption without evidence that his wife is actually happy with how things presently are. We don't know what makes her tick. Or tock. We only know that her husband doesn't know. She may be like my wife, believing that, if they've been married x number of years, they're a success story, no need to change anything. That seems to be the type of thinking we often see here, as well. If you've been married for a long time, and the situation has been on-going, why rock the boat? And the focus in such thinking is nearly 100% along the lines of geez guy (or girl), you're getting sex x number of times per week, why are you complaining??? What's your problem? Look at all the people here who have a literally sexless marriage?
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post #142 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 05:53 PM
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It does sound a little like porn derangement..

Respectfully OP, how much porn are you consuming?

I think it’s probably pretty common for men to fall into this trap. I think it is unrealistic to expect long term marital sex to be continually breaking new boundaries... shouldn’t we expect peaks and valleys?
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post #143 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 06:01 PM
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

@emcsquared, I am going to give you an assignment. Read my extract from your post as if you were someone other than yourself.

And please tell me if you can see any flaws in it, any potential problems?

Quote:
What disappoints me most is the low value she ascribes to our sexuality, beyond having some kind of sexual relationship. Specifically, she simply doesn't think our sex life is worthy of much (any?) of her mindspace. Example: for our 20th anniversary, I took her on an extremely nice trip. Weeks ahead of time I gave her a very simple and fun assignment: with a smile, I asked her to think of one sexual act we had never done (there are many easy things in this category) and then on our anniversary trip I'd ask her what she'd come up with and then we'd do it. That way there'd be no pressure and she'd be in full control. When the time came, we're in this beautiful place, I asked her what she had thought of. Answer? Nothing. She hadn't given my request a minute of thought. I'll never forget that moment for the rest of my life. I was crushed on the inside, tho I did my best at hiding my profound disappointment, not wanting to ruin the trip over this. Only recently (years later) did I ask her about this, and she had no answer why she didn't think my request was worth any of her time. This still stings.


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post #144 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 06:12 PM
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

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It does sound a little like porn derangement..

Respectfully OP, how much porn are you consuming?

I think it’s probably pretty common for men to fall into this trap. I think it is unrealistic to expect long term marital sex to be continually breaking new boundaries... shouldn’t we expect peaks and valleys?
But you're falling into the same expectations as OP when you bring up "peaks and valleys." Because that defines a sexual dynamic that is likely somewhat adventurous or at the very least changing and not monotonous.

The porn thing may or may not be an issue. Some become addicted; many do not. My "consumption" was based 100% on the amount of time since that last time. If it had been 4 or 5 days, porn "filled in" until my wife was in the mood. It never, ever, decreased desire for my wife. Funny thing, after our "crisis" when it was discovered my wife's narrative wasn't what she had portrayed, I have not viewed porn even once, and that was almost 9 months ago. There's a curiosity, but no desire. My wife, on the other hand, would rather spend time playing on-line card games than read a book dealing with biblically-inspired marriage principles. She seems unshakably addicted and there's no question that I feel it's robbing and energy from our marriage.
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post #145 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 06:28 PM
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

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Please read my post on this I just made where I address this. Also, I NEVER pressure her in bed. EVER. That very idea makes me nauseous.



Wow. Just wow. I took her on a fabulous trip to celebrate OUR MARRIAGE. Not to pressure her into anything. I treat her like a queen and she’d tell you that to your face. When I asked her to think of some sexual “thing” we hadn’t done before, she reacted with a smile and said “OK!” ENTHUSIASTICALLY. As I said, when the time came, she hadn’t given it another thought. Is that hard-core PRESSURE? Another thing I’m very thankful for - that I’m not married to someone who thinks like you.
Again, just wow. ANY kind of sexual pressure LITERALLY turns me off more than.... I was about to be very crude here but I won’t be. Let’s just say THAT would be my ED.



Absolute B.S. I took her on a great trip to celebrate US and all that we’ve been thru. When she broke my heart with her response I completely hid my reaction and buried it. Why? Because I’m a selfish boor (as some of you have accused me of)? No, because she’d previously stated that she feels more sexually open & adventurous on trips away from the kids and she liked my idea. Obviously not enough to give it another moment’s thought but at the time it was an enthusiastic ok.[/quote]

You asked for opinions. You have had many. You choose to attack and defend rather than open your mind to the possibility that WHAT you have communicated to us is being examined and commented on. I'm sorry that you feel that others don't have a right to their opinion. Perhaps that's part of your issue

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post #146 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 06:33 PM
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

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I'm a guy, early 50's, who many would describe as "having it all": good wife, healthy kids, big income, successful business owner, etc. I should be the happiest guy on the planet but one issue continues to haunt me: our sex life.

Even there, I have no big reason to complain. While she used to be a refuser/gatekeeper when the kids were younger she's come to understand that sex for me is far more than a simple physical release (which she used to think). For me, sex is the primary means of my emotional connection with her. Perhaps it's a personality defect in me but if our sex life ain't great then my emotional connection to her begins to fade. Happy to report she almost never says no anymore.

My challenge is our level of sexual compatibility and eagerness. I'm the far more "sexual" person who almost always has something bouncing around my head. It's just how I'm wired. Thing is, after being married 25 years I wonder if I'm losing my sexual attraction to her. I have no ED issues but during most sexual encounters with her, I have to fantasize HER having a loud orgasm (which isn't her, normally) in order for me to climax. There are times even that doesn't work and things go south quickly as she takes it personally if I fail to finish and she closes herself off for a day or two. I've seriously considered faking it to avoid that. I am on TRT if anyone's curious.

Imagine you could plot sexual desires and adventurousness on a linear scale. Mine would be very wide while hers would be much more narrow. I think there is some overlap between our two "scales" but not a ton. In her own words, she has no sexual fantasies. If gently pressed, the best she could come up with would be some unusual location, like on a deserted island. She's very satisfied with our status quo. Outside of the bedroom I've communicated a number of things I'd like her to think about and, when ready, come to me and say "let's do this". At the time she says sure! It never happens. It just has no significance to her at all.

It's important to say I know there's absolutely nothing wrong with her. She is who she is and I know I can't change that. When we married, I had only been with a few other women, one of whom was a sexual assault survivor, and understandably had ongoing major issues with sexual intimacy. Idiot that I was, I had a major KISA complex so we only had sex a handful of times over the course of several years, as I tried to help her heal. That relationship profoundly changed me. To this day I can't stomach any kind of rape scene in media and I'm also extremely sensitive to my wife's consent in whatever we do sexually, perhaps to an unhealthy degree. For example, if I suggest something sexually to my wife, and she responds with anything short of eagerness, I write it off, even tho I'd really like to try that (the thought of "pressing" myself sexually on a woman makes me physically ill). The frequent result is frustration on my part (mostly hidden to her).

What disappoints me most is the low value she ascribes to our sexuality, beyond having some kind of sexual relationship. Specifically, she simply doesn't think our sex life is worthy of much (any?) of her mindspace. Example: for our 20th anniversary, I took her on an extremely nice trip. Weeks ahead of time I gave her a very simple and fun assignment: with a smile, I asked her to think of one sexual act we had never done (there are many easy things in this category) and then on our anniversary trip I'd ask her what she'd come up with and then we'd do it. That way there'd be no pressure and she'd be in full control. When the time came, we're in this beautiful place, I asked her what she had thought of. Answer? Nothing. She hadn't given my request a minute of thought. I'll never forget that moment for the rest of my life. I was crushed on the inside, tho I did my best at hiding my profound disappointment, not wanting to ruin the trip over this. Only recently (years later) did I ask her about this, and she had no answer why she didn't think my request was worth any of her time. This still stings.

My wife is in every way a good person. She's faithful, a great mom, and almost never complains about anything. She does a magnificent job running our household. She works part-time just for fun and as a way to get out of the house. I take her out on "dinner dates" about 3 times per week.

Another wrinkle: she had never tried marijuana before but was willing to try with me now that it's legal (I hadn't smoked anything since college many years ago). We had the perfect opportunity not long ago and so we did. After a few hits I suddenly remembered the cautions how today's weed is stronger than decades ago, and we were both seriously baked. Thing is, we then had the most intense sexual encounter of my life, by orders of magnitude! The wife who's almost always been a "one and done" orgasm girl, must have orgasmed strongly at least 20 times. After I did (mind-blowing) she pulled my hands in with a toy because she simply wasn't finished yet (me absolutely loving every second of that!!). When we (she!) finally were done, I started this joyous laughter - laughingly saying "WTF just happened??". It was the stuff of dreams. I was thinking - I KNEW it!! I knew there was a sexual beast in her and we just unleashed it! Alas, the next day, the first words out of her mouth were, "I don't remember much, but I definitely NEVER want to do that again". Again, crushed. I had just had the best experience of my life, and it sure as HELL seemed like she did as well, and then the balloon popped with those words.

I can almost hear some of you saying: dude, either accept that's who she is and deal with it or leave her and move on. Leaving her would absolutely devastate the kids and devastate me financially. I do love her and do want us both to be happy together. The thing is, I am hung up with the possibility there's so much more in her sexual being if only I could coax it out. I've always envisioned marriage as a growth in getting to know your spouse on a deeper level continually, and that includes an ever-deepening sexual connection with a sense of adventurous exploration. For her, she knows that sex is important in a marriage but still doesn't think it warrants more thought than doing the same old routine. Again and again. Some might say if I'm bored then she sure is as well. I truly don't think so in our case. I know exactly how to push her buttons because what so stimulates me is seeing her pleasure.

90+% of our fights over the course of our marriage have to do with sex. My conclusion is that we must really suck at communicating on this topic and now there's so many past hurts that it's almost as if the well has been poisoned. Any convo now is laced with mines and she inevitably brings stuff up from 15+ years ago. I can't/won't change her, but is it wrong of me to want her to increase the value of our sexual relationship because it means so much to me? Is there any way to encourage her to expand her horizons, actually give some mental time to sex? I haven't figured out if having a more sexually enthusiastic wife is a need or only a desire but I fear for our long term future if we can't at least get on a positive track. I've noticed my own attitude towards sex staring to deteriorate and left untreated I know that will have a destructive impact on the relationship.

Thank you for reading this tome and in advance for your helpful ideas.
Read YOUR words again. Nowhere did you say that she enthusiastically said yes. Your disappointment was palpable. I agree with you that your communication skills need work. Both with her and with the group as a whole
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post #147 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 08:14 PM
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

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He did previously mention, in passing, that it might be a "religious hangup" if I recall correctly.

I think you're making an assumption without evidence that his wife is actually happy with how things presently are. We don't know what makes her tick. Or tock. We only know that her husband doesn't know. She may be like my wife, believing that, if they've been married x number of years, they're a success story, no need to change anything. That seems to be the type of thinking we often see here, as well. If you've been married for a long time, and the situation has been on-going, why rock the boat? And the focus in such thinking is nearly 100% along the lines of geez guy (or girl), you're getting sex x number of times per week, why are you complaining??? What's your problem? Look at all the people here who have a literally sexless marriage?
We have had no indication from him that she isn't happy with how things are, however she must be able to tell that he isn't happy with her and that must hurt. Having a spouse who is discontent with them, in whatever way it is, must be pretty depressing. A bit like a wife who is always discontent over their money and possessions because her husband doesn't earn enough. That must hurt as well.
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post #148 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 08:38 PM
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

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It does sound a little like porn derangement..

Respectfully OP, how much porn are you consuming?

I think it’s probably pretty common for men to fall into this trap. I think it is unrealistic to expect long term marital sex to be continually breaking new boundaries... shouldn’t we expect peaks and valleys?
Porn use does cause a LOT of discontentment and unrealistic expectations for many. That's one reason why I wouldn't use it.
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post #149 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019, 09:10 PM
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

Moderator message:-

Folks, the moderators have had to clean up a threadjack.

Please, don't insult the OP by doing this any more, OK?


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post #150 of 185 (permalink) Old 12-05-2019, 03:32 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Encouraging Growth & Save a Marriage

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@emcsquared, I am going to give you an assignment. Read my extract from your post as if you were someone other than yourself.

And please tell me if you can see any flaws in it, any potential problems?
I feel like you want me to say something like, “wow the nerve of this guy to feel disappointed that his wife doesn’t love sexuality like he does”...
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