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Do you think I should give my marriage another shot? [Please read post before voting]

  • Yes

    Votes: 10 41.7%
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    Votes: 14 58.3%
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
[Hi, I'm considering separation leading to divorce and my mind is a minefield right now. Could you please read on and share your feedback? Sorry it's a long post, but 5 mins of your time could really save my life! Update: Italicizing 'key points' here and in responses since I can't cover everything in one post, hope you don't mind.]

We're both from India (now living in Vancouver). My wife of 4 yrs and I are a celibate couple, although not officially so and not by mutual choice. In other words, she's clearly not sexually interested in me. On top, she clearly displays alienating behavior - for instance, she's never interested in calling up anybody from my family or her own, even on festivals and special occasions. If you're anybody leaving a message on her phone, nine out of ten times she won't bother calling you back (unless you're from her workplace). And once on her birthday, I traveled all across the city to get her a cake, which she didn't even touch in the end because perhaps one-twelfth of it got squashed on the way.

By default family is important and at least not disposable in our culture. Yet when my parents (I'm their only surviving child) were visiting us after three years, her coldness towards them was way too apparent. When I confronted her about it, she argued that she "couldn't generate feelings for people" she didn't care about. (Sub-question: correct me if I'm wrong here, but shouldn't one be polite and warm towards one's in-laws in any culture?)

I almost left her quite a few times recently, citing all the things that are wrong about our marriage. We ended up having sex for the first when I told her I wanted a divorce.

To make matters worse, she's really loving and caring towards me, while still retaining said emotionally and sexually alienating behavior. She's also never cheated on me or anything similar. Which is why I can't really bring myself to break up with her.

Before, I had tried cuddling, buying her lingerie, discussing fantasies, doing pretty much anything I could to woo her in bed. But she was always tired or stressed out over work, had a headache, needed space or was having her period. On the rare random nights when she was a little horny and was making advances herself, the best I could get was some kissing and fondling-licking. The last BJ I got from her (after lots of begging) was in 2009.

In the past I had also tried to discuss our sexual miscommunication several times, even wanting to get into therapy, but she just didn't want to talk about it. Even bringing up our lack of physical chemistry was taboo and created nasty fights. Now that our marriage is on the rocks, she's at least accommodating towards such discussions. She points out that I can't seem to create the mood she needs for sex. She's open to therapy.

But I seem to be the one who has to take the initiative in every case. And I've lost my patience.

Frankly I'm unable and unwilling to reciprocate her advances. I've been disappointed on way too many occasions that started off great and then ended in me feeling ignored and lonely while I jerked off in the bathroom. I've lived too long with a smoking hot wife who turns heads everywhere but didn't give a damn about my male organ for nearly four years. Most of all, I feel cheap and disgusted living with the fact that the only time she's had sex with me was on the night I threatened to break up with her.

My question is, do you think it's right of me to feel that way? Am I being selfish when she's finally at least open to communication? Or are we really incompatible and wasting each other's time in life?

Please consider both aspects of my problem - emotional/value-centric and sexual - while responding. Thank you.
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
First of all, thanks for responding. I have tried all that, and I always buy her gifts and take her out for dinner. I make mental notes about things she says she'd like to have, and later surprise her by buying them for her. Even now.

I am confident I know her well as a person; in bed she never gave me a chance to know her. Look, what hurts more than her not having sex with me is that she never showed any signs of wanting to. I'm no ugly person, and I was always fantasizing about her! Now when she wants to, it feels like a compromise on her part. I feel cheated.

If sex without trust and love is violence, then not having sex in the presence of trust and love must be too.

I don't think she knows me at all; neither does she try hard enough to. I hate horror movies, but watched so many of them with her just to keep her company. For four years, she couldn't even stand the thought of sharing the remote. She's never sat through anything I like watching..

Her favorite color is yellow. She's not much of a reader, but likes cooking magazines. I get them for her regularly.

if she is open to finally talking about sex, keep trying to talk. what does she like?? do you make her happy?? do you know how??

do you even know her?? does she even know you?? start dateing. if she dosent know you well enough, she will not have trust in you. without trust there can be no love. without trust and love sex is violence.

what are her fav foods? books?? movies??
dont post another reply telling me what she does [work] that is not who she is

just date. open up to her. no pressure. encourage her to open up, and talk about her life and childhood, as you will. give gifts. ones to show you listened to what she said she would like to have, or take her places she woulld like to go. [i mean like that new restraunt]

but talk kindly, and honestly to your wife. be patient and loving.
find books at a local book store [i dont know whats in CA]maybe barnes and noble??] go together, learn and grow together. there can not be a realtionship if its one sided, the both of you must want the same out come...
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Hi, I'm considering separation leading to divorce and my mind is a minefield right now. Could you please read on and share your feedback? Also, I just joined this forum (thank God I found it), so sorry if I've got the etiquette wrong or have used objectionable language. Sorry it's a long post...

We're both from India (now living in Vancouver). My wife of 4 yrs and I are a celibate couple, although not officially so and not by mutual choice. In other words, she's clearly not sexually interested in me. On top, she clearly displays alienating behavior - for instance, she's never interested in calling up anybody from my family or her own, even on festivals and special occasions. If you're anybody leaving a message on her phone, nine out of ten times she won't bother calling you back (unless you're from her workplace). And once on her birthday, I traveled all across the city to get her a cake, which she didn't even touch in the end because perhaps one-twelfth of it got squashed on the way.

By default family is important and at least not disposable in our culture. Yet when my parents (I'm their only surviving child) were visiting us after three years, her coldness towards them was way too apparent. When I confronted her about it, she argued that she "couldn't generate feelings for people" she didn't care about. (Sub-question: correct me if I'm wrong here, but shouldn't one be polite and warm towards one's in-laws in any culture?)

I almost left her quite a few times recently, citing all the things that are wrong about our marriage. We ended up having sex for the first when I told her I wanted a divorce.

To make matters worse, she's really loving and caring towards me, albeit excluding said emotional and sexual issues. She's also never cheated on me or anything similar. Which is why I can't really bring myself to break up with her.

Before, I had tried cuddling, buying her lingerie, discussing fantasies, doing pretty much anything I could to woo her in bed. But she was always tired or stressed out over work, had a headache, needed space or was having her period. On the rare random nights when she was a little horny and was making advances herself, the best I could get was some kissing and fondling-licking. The last BJ I got from her (after lots of begging) was in 2009.

In the past I had also tried to discuss our sexual miscommunication several times, even wanting to get into therapy, but she just didn't want to talk about it. Even bringing up our lack of physical chemistry was taboo and created nasty fights. Now that our marriage is on the rocks, she's at least accommodating towards such discussions. She points out that I can't seem to create the mood she needs for sex. She's open to therapy.

But I seem to be the one who has to take the initiative in every case. And I've lost my patience. Frankly I'm unable and unwilling to reciprocate her advances. I've been disappointed on way too many occasions that started off great and then ended in me feeling ignored and lonely while I jerked off in the bathroom. I've lived too long with a smoking hot wife who turns heads everywhere but didn't give a damn about my male organ for nearly four years. Most of all, I feel cheap and disgusted living with the fact that the only time she's had sex with me was on the night I threatened to break up with her.

My question is, do you think it's right of me to feel that way? Am I being selfish when she's finally at least open to communication? Or are we really incompatible and wasting each other's time in life?
Women need connection to have sex and to feel horny.
If you already judged her as a cold person to your entire family, how can she feel she's wanted? You will need to communicate with her without making her feel insecure. Ask her also to show you love. Tell her you need to feel loved as well.
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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Thanks for responding. Isn't a connection a two-sided thing? I might have given you the impression that she's a pariah in my family due to her coldness - that is absolutely not the case. It breaks my heart to see that despite her not even trying to conceal her lack of caring for them, they regularly inquire about her, are concerned about her and secretly hope she'll pay them some attention.

In my defense, I have always defended her from any social awkwardness as best as possible. And her ignoring me sexually started long before any real family issues had surfaced. Never made her feel insecure, have always been positive and optimistic.

You're also ignoring my feelings here - after four years of being ignored, I feel pretty lousy and expect her to at least try a bit more to normalize our relationship.
 

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Hi,

I asked my husband about your predicament. He is of Indian origin, from the US, currently living in Europe.

He has some experience about it. He says he knew four couples in situations similar to yours. Three of them had arranged marriages. None of them survived in the long term. He is rather surprised you lasted 4 years. Most guys in your situation would not have lasted 2 years.

You talk about culture - however I do not see your wife adhering to any cultural norms when she mistreats your family.

What I would be curious about is - if you had an arranged marriage is it at all possible that she had a love interest prior to marriage?

Right now what my husband would do, but it might be already too late for that, is threaten her with a divorce once a week, at least LOL Make sure you use protection, because the last thing you need is a child to complicate matters.

Seriously though, do you really want to be with someone who might not want to be with you?
 

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Thanks for responding. Isn't a connection a two-sided thing? I might have given you the impression that she's a pariah in my family due to her coldness - that is absolutely not the case. It breaks my heart to see that despite her not even trying to conceal her lack of caring for them, they regularly inquire about her, are concerned about her and secretly hope she'll pay them some attention.

In my defense, I have always defended her from any social awkwardness as best as possible. And her ignoring me sexually started long before any real family issues had surfaced. Never made her feel insecure, have always been positive and optimistic.

You're also ignoring my feelings here - after four years of being ignored, I feel pretty lousy and expect her to at least try a bit more to normalize our relationship.
Women tend to ignore men's feelings, when discussing sexual problems in a marriage. It goes both ways and you have clearly made a valiant effort. If a husband is willing to romance his wife AND stay when she refuses to have sex, he's entitled to some sex! Women who don't want to have sex should not marry. Every spouse has the right to enjoy a sexual relationship.
You mentioned the fact that you are both Indian. I'm well aware that divorce is frowned upon in your culture, as well as not respecting elders. This is making a modern shift with the younger generation. I've seen many young indian women have love marriages and premarital sex.
In the end, you have to decide if your culture is worth your happiness. I was raised like most women with Jamaican parents: sexist and abusive parents are to be obeyed at all costs. I have been disowned because I'm independent and I refuse to take abuse. I miss my family of origin, but I don't need to be abused when I have created a family of two adults, with my husband.
There are MANY indian women that uphold the family inclusiveness, yet are tigers in bed. Life is too short.
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MsLonely,
This is an off the charts ludicrous post. She WAS cold to his family. She even ADMITTED it. Of COURSE he was upset about that. Why are you putting this on him. She is a cold head case who simply is not attracted to him and doesn't care about him.


Women need connection to have sex and to feel horny.
If you already judged her as a cold person to your entire family, how can she feel she's wanted? You will need to communicate with her without making her feel insecure. Ask her also to show you love. Tell her you need to feel loved as well.
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Akcroy,
You cannot expect to be happy in a marriage where the W is SO strongly averse to sex that only the threat of imminent divorce gets her to accommodate you.

But I also have some general observations:
- First of all please ignore the comments from people telling you what you need to do in order to earn sex. They are ignoring the fact that you are MARRIED. They are speaking to you as if you are dating. When married, the "default" is you ARE having sex. It typically stops only if you are doing something WRONG.
- If you are in a healthy marriage, sex happens with reasonable frequency UNLESS:
a. you are being an unsupportive husband/not nice/not loving OR
b. you are being TOO NICE in which case many/most women will eventually stop having sex with you

But the key word there is "eventually" - they would at least sleep with you for a few years until they bored of your overly nice/weak/conflict avoidant behavior.

Go read "married man sex life"

In the meantime end your marriage. It is not a valid marriage when it takes 4 years and the threat of divorce to have sex.





Thanks for responding. Isn't a connection a two-sided thing? I might have given you the impression that she's a pariah in my family due to her coldness - that is absolutely not the case. It breaks my heart to see that despite her not even trying to conceal her lack of caring for them, they regularly inquire about her, are concerned about her and secretly hope she'll pay them some attention.

In my defense, I have always defended her from any social awkwardness as best as possible. And her ignoring me sexually started long before any real family issues had surfaced. Never made her feel insecure, have always been positive and optimistic.

You're also ignoring my feelings here - after four years of being ignored, I feel pretty lousy and expect her to at least try a bit more to normalize our relationship.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Hi everybody, thanks for your feedback, sincerely appreciated. I decided to have one last talk/fight with my wife over these issues. She begged me not to leave her, so I didn't. Couldn't, rather.

She seems to be genuinely trying to make things work now. She's clearly interested in having sex, as well as addressing my emotional needs. She even has expressed the desire to at least reciprocate family nicenesses... yet to be seen in action, though.

Now I'm getting cold feet. It feels like I can't forgive her for the past 3 yrs of my life... I keep thinking, what kind of person am I living with? Why did we have to go through all that muck just for me to get some sexual/emotional attention? I'm almost paranoid over this and don't want to have sex with her.

Moreover, there's always a glance, a wince, a forced smile from her that gives away the 'constructed' nature of her efforts.

Am I being micro-conscious? Am I even being fair? What do you think I should do?

Sincerely,
a.
 

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She sounds quite passive and expects little or nothing of herself. It's not her fault she's unsociable toward her in-laws. It's their fault because they don't generate some spontaeous magical feelings within her. It's not her fault she's a-sexual, it's you fault because you don't generate magical feelings. She's a slave to her emotions. She responds to what she feels like responding to, when she feels like responding. Sounds narcissistic to me but I'm no shrink. I don't understand the concept of not doing what is expected of me just because I don't feel like it.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Once again thanks to everyone who responded. You have no idea what a difference you're making to my life...

@Pandakiss No offense taken. You know the problem is I'm not sure whether I can forgive her 100%. Can I? Should I? Would she have? I don't know.

Happy new year to everybody!
 

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Here is how "this story" typically goes.

W freezes husband out mostly/totally in the bedroom because she is not attracted to him or just does not like sex.

H threatens a divorce. Wife quickly comes to bed hoping to get pregnant and "lock" the H into the marriage.

Do not let that happen. If you have sex - where a condom. Do NOT let her convince you she is on birth control.

Since you can already tell how much effort (the wincing is a dead giveaway) for her there is no chance this is sustainable.

You are dealing with WAY more than sexual aversion. Her social behavior towards you/your family shows a level of self focus that is incredibly dysfunctional.

Think about it - you do not have kids - you made a mistake. Go start over. Your odds of a much much better match are good. Your odds of a worse match are almost zero.


Once again thanks to everyone who responded. You have no idea what a difference you're making to my life...

@Pandakiss No offense taken. You know the problem is I'm not sure whether I can forgive her 100%. Can I? Should I? Would she have? I don't know.

Happy new year to everybody!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Update: no, I think she's genuine in her efforts to make our marriage work. She doesn't have a grand scheme of getting pregnant and hence trapping me or anything similar. I know for sure that she didn't have any serious affairs before we got married, and that she wasn't abused or anything like that as a kid.

I feel the sexual chemistry isn't there - when she's trying to get into the mood I'm just not falling for it, and vice versa. Speaking of myself, I'm just not sure whether I've forgiven her for my four years of celibacy.

She's trying, that much I have to give her. But we still haven't had sex since that one divorce-threatened time. (Shouldn't she have had tried harder? I mean come on, this is a big deal and enough to dissolve any marriage. Not to mention that it's she who never was interested in sex.)

Right now things are sour again - she refused to talk to my parents online in the evening because she was watching Real Housewives reruns.. a show which, at other times, she claims she doesn't care for. When I ask her to talk to them, she tells me she's busy, she'll talk later, etc. But she has time to chat up her own mom. She doesn't mind me not talking to her mom, but I don't really like this picture.

She's never, ever called up my parents on her own, or even talked to them online or over the phone without my asking her to do so. Even now, when she knows our marriage is troubled, she doesn't take that extra step - calling my parents, for example, at least on special occasions such as New Year's Eve. Should I be pissed?

The kind of household where I come from, my maternal and paternal grandparents were treated equally. As I've mentioned previously, in my culture families grow with marriage; my in-laws are as respectable and important to me as my parents.. but in practice, thanks to my wife's doings, I no longer care for my in-laws. How can I maintain respecting and caring for them when my wife cares naught for hers? Besides, my in-laws have never seemed to be very interested in me when I used to call them.

I'm so frustrated right now.
 

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What about that emotionally alienating behavior towards you? Has that improved at least?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
@reachingshore Yes, it has; although how much, I don't know, since she's still quite adamant about her stand on things such as corresponding with my parents. And her set time and mood for sex.

I forgot to respond to a question you asked me previously - we actually didn't have an arranged marriage. We fell in love and convinced our families to accept our relationship.

I know she wants to live the rest of her life with me. But seems like it's going to be largely on her terms.
 

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we actually didn't have an arranged marriage
A... OK. I wasn't expecting this to be honest.

What I meant: if that's one of your problems with her, has she improved on showing you affection? Non-sexually related affection?
Did she talk to your parents on New Years Eve? Did she show that effort/willingness to improve in that regard, as she promised 2-3 days ago?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
She shows me more affection, and yes she did talk to my parents on New Year's Eve. But not voluntarily, I had to ask her to. It was still quite a formal affair.

She's made an overall effort, but I still have to ask her to do every little thing. Well the change is perhaps that she now at least does something - most of the time - if I ask her to.

And she still occasionally posts pretty self-pitiful status updates on Facebook.
 

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Ackroy,
Why would you want to stay with someone with whom you can only negotiate at gunpoint?

By the way - after 21 years this is my definition of "true love": A genuine desire and ability to be pleasing to your partner. Full stop. Thats it. Clearly she lacks the desire - and only makes minimal effort now and only at the brink of divorce. What kind of life will that be for you?

This whole - wants to stay married but only on her terms will only work if you are willing to be a doormat.


She shows me more affection, and yes she did talk to my parents on New Year's Eve. But not voluntarily, I had to ask her to. It was still quite a formal affair.

She's made an overall effort, but I still have to ask her to do every little thing. Well the change is perhaps that she now at least does something - most of the time - if I ask her to.

And she still occasionally posts pretty self-pitiful status updates on Facebook.
 

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body we are coming from the same culture, your marriage will never last therefore leave before things get more complicated.
May be the reason she does not want divorce is she is scared from culture judgment nothing else.
to me what is worse the carelessness that is coming toward your family and anyone else. if my wife does not show caring toward them and communicate regularly how can i trust her with our kids.
that who she is, dont force to change her.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Ackroy,
Why would you want to stay with someone with whom you can only negotiate at gunpoint?

This whole - wants to stay married but only on her terms will only work if you are willing to be a doormat.
Why I still want to stay with her? Because despite everything, I still love her, and she loves me. I keep on hoping in my heart that everything will work out for us.

So far, yes, any negotiations have been managed by putting her at "gunpoint", but I hope that will change too. She doesn't treat me like a doormat, and neither do I to her.

This is just a really tough marital crisis, and call me whatever you want, I just can't let go. Since that part's true, I keep on hoping.

Thanks for your feedback, once again. I'll let you guys know if there are any recent developments.
 
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