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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Can a marriage survive without physical attraction?

I married my husband right out of high school. We've been married for over ten years now. I married him so young mainly to escape an abusive household. I enjoy his company and think of him as as a close friend, but I've never viewed him as a sexual partner in all the years that we've been married.

I can honestly say that I've never been sexually attracted to him. I do have sex when he wants, but do not enjoy it. I've discussed with him before about my lack of sexual attraction, he told me that it's a mental block that I need to overcome. I have yet to overcome my mental block.

I'm envious of the couples here with active sex life and mutual sexual attraction for each other. I often wonder what that would feel like. Maybe I'm simply having a bad case of grass is green on the other side. Maybe I just need someone to tell me that there's nothing wrong with being married to my best friend even if I'm not attracted to him. Maybe I need someone to tell me that when we grow old, I'll at least grow old with my dear friend.
 

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What is so unattractive about him? And have you ever told him you find him unattractive, or just that you don't like sex? There's a big difference.
 

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Rose Petal, is he just a generally unattractive guy?
The type that most others would probably also find unattractive if he were to walk into a room
like a 3 out of 10.... or worse :(

Or are there specific unattractive things about him?
bad skin or teeth, weight issues, dresses poorly, childish personality etc
that could be altered with relative ease?

As a lover, how is he?
Clumsy, unsatisfying, "dopey" etc...
would you consider him an unskilled lover?
That would make a huge difference in why you don't see him as a sexual person.

There is nothing wrong with considering him to be your best friend. My husband is mine. But if you're not physically/sexually attracted to him, it may be difficult for you to stay faithful to your marriage over the long term.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I don't know what is it that I find him unattractive. He's not drop dead gorgeous looking, but he's not ugly either. When I first met him, I never once thought that yes I'm so attracted to him.

He doesn't have bad skin or teeth. He's gained weight over the years. I honestly don't have a problem with weight gain. I've never found him attractive when he weighed less. As a lover, I can't get completion with intercourse.

Aribabe, I see what you mean about difficult to stay faithful if I'm not physically/sexually attracted to him. I am a very quiet person, not very outgoing. I don't draw unnecessarily attention to myself and never seek inappropriate attention from the opposite sex.

I'm content in almost all aspects of my marriage. The only other issue that bugs me from time to time is that I'm the main bread winner in this family. I make a very decent income whereas he makes minimum wage. I do envy other couples who share the financial burden equally. Honestly this is not the main issue, it's not something I can't deal with for the rest of my life if I have to.

The only thing that really bothers me is this strong desire to experience the sexual attraction that other happily married couples are experiencing. This issue has been bothering me for years now. I have to continuously tell myself that the grass is not greener on the other side. At least I have a faithful, understanding husband who's not abusive to me.
 

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Can a marriage survive without physical attraction?

I married my husband right out of high school. We've been married for over ten years now. I married him so young mainly to escape an abusive household. I enjoy his company and think of him as as a close friend, but I've never viewed him as a sexual partner in all the years that we've been married.

I can honestly say that I've never been sexually attracted to him. I do have sex when he wants, but do not enjoy it. I've discussed with him before about my lack of sexual attraction, he told me that it's a mental block that I need to overcome. I have yet to overcome my mental block.

I'm envious of the couples here with active sex life and mutual sexual attraction for each other. I often wonder what that would feel like. Maybe I'm simply having a bad case of grass is green on the other side. Maybe I just need someone to tell me that there's nothing wrong with being married to my best friend even if I'm not attracted to him. Maybe I need someone to tell me that when we grow old, I'll at least grow old with my dear friend.
I'm interested to hear the responses here.

I am the husband who is not attracted to his wife. Specifically, it is her weight. Our situation is different in that I was attracted to her when we were married but over the years she has ballooned to 330+lbs. She believes I should be sexually attracted to her if I love her but I am unable to get over that mental block. I can have sex with her in the right moment, but instead of looking at her and feeling aroused, I have the opposite reaction most of the time. She surprised me with wanting a morning quickie the other day, showing up naked as I was getting ready to go to work ... my (internal) reaction was "you have to be kidding me ... that is just gross (as I was looking at the folds of fat and her enormous belly)." I am just not attracted to morbid obesity and no jedi mind trick I can employ will change that. I'm not even picky, I'm attracted to all sorts of body types ... just not that one. People complain that their spouse has gained 20,30,40 pounds. If my wife was only that overweight, she would have to push me away. How shallow is that?

I feel horrible about that in so many ways. Like you, she is my friend. She is a good person and mother. Nobody could be a better mother to my children than her. How do I reconcile that? Like you, I am extremely jealous of those here who have active sex lives and mutual attraction. It is how I always imagined marriage. It feels entirely unfair. On the other hand, it isn't fair to her either that she is married to someone who isn't attracted to her. While she has a lower sex drive than I do, I know she would prefer an active sex life with mutual attraction. I know I don't want to go through the rest of my life in a sexless marriage but I also know that it is entirely my perspective that is causing the problem ... a problem that causes her to go through a sexless marriage. Complicating the situation is that we have children. How could I possibly justify a divorce based on a sexless marriage when that could have serious negative implications for my children ... my beautiful girls mean everything to both of us.

It's a dilemna for sure.
 

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Rose Petal, is he just a generally unattractive guy?
The type that most others would probably also find unattractive if he were to walk into a room
like a 3 out of 10.... or worse :(

Or are there specific unattractive things about him?
bad skin or teeth, weight issues, dresses poorly, childish personality etc
that could be altered with relative ease?

As a lover, how is he?
Clumsy, unsatisfying, "dopey" etc...
would you consider him an unskilled lover?
That would make a huge difference in why you don't see him as a sexual person.

There is nothing wrong with considering him to be your best friend. My husband is mine. But if you're not physically/sexually attracted to him, it may be difficult for you to stay faithful to your marriage over the long term.
Whatever you do, divorce before going the affair route. If he is your friend then surely you don't want to cause him that much pain. It's not his fault and he doesn't deserve it.
 

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Rose Petals,

There is nothing wrong with not being attracted to your husband. Ultimately you have no control over that. However, it was unfair for you to marry him knowing that you weren't attracted him. Nothing you can really do about that at this point, and i don't think it's an issue worthy of ending your marriage.

With that in mind...

Many women cant orgasm through intercourse alone, there's nothing abnormal about that BUT what i'm asking is do you generally consider him to be sexually satisfying? Are you sexually satisfied?

I think one of your main issues, even if you don't realize it, is that he's both overweight AND he's broke.

Being the bread winner is not the normal position women expect to find themselves in, especially with a fat husband who's only making minimum wage. That's a total sexual turn off.

How often are you two having sex? Do you feel like he "hassles" you for sex?

Even if you don't find him sexy, are there days when you see him and think he looks "cute" or "handsome"
 

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You married him for the wrong reasons and this is the outcome. If physical attraction is not present, then he is your friend, your confidant, your roomate, anything but not a H. Sexual attraction is not something to be won in time like trust and respect- either it is there from the begining or not...and if it's not, romantic love is missing from the relationship. I think you should divorce. He deserve better and so do you.
 

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Is it also a possibility that you have some emotional issues about relationships in general because of the abuse you mentioned was the reason you married him - to escape? Perhaps you have intimacy issues that are holding you back from being attracted.
 

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If I wasn't attracted to my wife, DIVORCED!!!!

Seriously, more a friend and room mate marriage, if you want to call it a marriage at that point. Not good.

My wifee only orgasms when I give her oral.

She does like doggie with her legs together and missionary with my legs on the outside and hers tight together, but oral is orgasms for her.

When we had sex once every 2 or more weeks, our marriage was like a friendship and room mates arrangement. But now we have sex 3x or more each week and the difference is night and day.
 

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You married him for the wrong reasons and this is the outcome. If physical attraction is not present, then he is your friend, your confidant, your roomate, anything but not a H. Sexual attraction is not something to be won in time like trust and respect- either it is there from the begining or not...and if it's not, romantic love is missing from the relationship. I think you should divorce. He deserve better and so do you.
Attraction can be developed over time often because of trust and respect. It happens all the time. I have heard many people say they were not attracted to their signigicant other at first - but the attraction came later. I agree she married him for the wrong reasons, and it has been long enough that the attraction should be there now. I just think they both owe it to each other to seek professional help before calling it off - just to make sure there are not some underlying issues keeping her closed off in this area.
 

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Agree about seeking professional help first. If the marriage can be saved, it would be great. But it's not very likely that she will develop attraction for him, after so long. I think he deserves to be with someone who finds him attractive and can fall in love with him. And she deserves to find that spark too.
 

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Yep, sounds time for counseling for both or just you if he won't go and if that doesn't resolve things or you don't go for counseling then you have to decide if a friendship marriage will be enough for you. Sounds like you married young to escape a situation and sooner or later that decision would come to haunt you and that time has come.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thank you all for the helpful comments. You've given me a lot to think about.

Won't sexual/physical attraction fade over time in a lot of marriages? Marriage to my best friend isn't so bad. I've read so much worse on this forum.

I'm very envious of other couples, but it could also be just another life phase that I have to get through.

I'm also scared to simply end it. I worry about how he's going to support himself. We've had our whole life planned with us being together. I also worry about having children. We don't have any children yet because we've held off so I can become better educated. I'm in my 30s, my biological clock is ticking away. Now is not the time to drop everything and jump ship so that maybe I'll be able to find a mutual marriage partner that I can be best friends with and have sexual attraction.
 

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Won't sexual/physical attraction fade over time in a lot of marriages?
Not in most healthy marriages. Some people are still having hots for their spouses and still bonking their spouses to their 60s and 70s, you could find examples in this forum alone.

I'm also scared to simply end it. I worry about how he's going to support himself.
you said he had minimum wages. So he has income. he's an adult and he has a job (even though it's minimum wages), surely he can take care of himself.

I'm in my 30s, my biological clock is ticking away. Now is not the time to drop everything and jump ship so that maybe I'll be able to find a mutual marriage partner that I can be best friends with and have sexual attraction.
Not if you want to have a fully satisfying life. The fact that you posted here for advice, is the proof that life is not satisfactory to you right now.

Ask yourself this question. If your husband suddenly decided by himself, that he needs to lose weight and get a better job. Would he be more attractive to you? Be honest. To yourself, you don't have to be honest to us, but to yourself. Imagine him back to his shape before he gets fat. Imagine him earning not minimum wages but 2x that amount. Would he become more PHYSICALLY attractive to you?

If the answer is no, then you know what to do. The RIGHT thing, fair for both of you.

Sorry for being a pessimist. I hope optimists people here will chime in to counterbalance my pessimism.
 

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I'm currently in a similar situation. I'm trying to find romantic love for my husband. We have a child together so divorce is a more complicated option. We have started trying to get more creative with sex and that has helped me start to see him as more of a man. We still have a ways to go but I'm hoping with enough patience and effort, I will have what some others seem to enjoy as a healthy marriage.
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Wow Rose. I feel sorry for your husband. You may not intend for it to come across like this, but it definitely sounds like you see him just as a ticket to a decent life where your material needs are met. I hope that your intentions are not to use him to improve your education and to later dump him. I assume you are looking for a way to find love for him, so I assume you are here with the best of intentions.

Maybe you should start with what about him really bothers you. Don't say nothing, because if that was the truth you would have already developed strong feelings for him over these past 10 years. So, what do you dislike most about him?
 

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Plan 9 obviously she's not using him. She's the breadwinner and he makes minimum wage. One of the reasons she doesn't want to leave is because she's afraid he won't be able to support himself. That was a bit sexist of you to assume.

Rose, I somewhat know where you're coming from. I do imagine though that your husband losing weight or getting a better job wouldn't do much in the way of increasing your attraction for him since you weren't even attracted to him back in highschool. At your age, you're going to have to make a decision soon on how important experiencing romantic love and satisfying sex is to you if you want to have children. I know exactly how hard it is to think of leaving since he is your best friend. I've tried to leave so many times myself and couldn't because I would start to think of how much I'd miss him if I did. Sometimes in life you just have to do what's right for you though.
 

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I'm going to go against the grain here and say I'm not so sure about counseling. I mean really... What can they actually tell her?

This one is cut and dry. Personally, I don't think that everyone is wired to "grow" into attraction. Look at the posters who have had a spouse become super overweight and found their attraction totally gone... You can't really counsel someone through that.

The first response to the OP asked "well is he a 3?" But even people that are 500 lbs or as ugly as a troglodyte deserve to be able to find someone who, for whatever reason (even if its a fetish) *want* to have sex with them OR are able to feel genuine attraction that is more than flesh deep. Someone wired to be attracted to the physical cant do that.

If you are wired to have surface appearance based attraction primarily I really don't think you can change that.

OP's reasons for staying were mainly guilt. No good. I think leaving is absolutely the right thing to consider. Especially since there are no kids. Imagine they stay and have a kid? Then in ten years people will be lambasting her for having an affair (maybe an EA) and guys will be advising her "BH" to hit the gym, install VARs, man up, 180, etc

This is a train wreck that could actually be potentially averted IMO.
 
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