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Please help... I am so lost on what to do with my marriage. My husband and I have been married for 5 years. I am 27 and he 38. Sex has always been an issue in our relationship. Of course in the beginning, it was more frequent, but still my drive was much higher. About a year after we got married sex became nearly non-existant. We have fought and fought over it. Most recently, I flat out told him I would not stay in a sexless marriage. It broke my heart to see how deeply my saying that hurt him, but his lack of willingness to share intimacy with me is turning me into someone I cant stand. I am self conscious, I feel unattractive, unwanted, undesired. Constantly asking what is wrong with me, when I never did before. I need and crave an intimate connection with him, but no matter how hard I try (sexual and non sexual), it never improves. I love him as a person, our relationship outside of sex is great. I know I would miss him dearly if I divorced him, but at the same time… I am 27. My sex drive and curiosity now is higher than it has ever been. I can’t even discuss sex with him or without him shutting down. The only time we have sex is if I instigate it, and at this point, I am tired of basically begging for sex. He told me that sex has never been important to him and it has always affected his past relationships (granted he told me this after 4 years of fighting about sex). He won't go to counseling, he has said more times than he can count that he will "work on it" but that lasts about a week or two and its right back where we were. I feel cheated and betrayed. I love him and I dont want to hurt him, but I find myself constantly saying to myself, "this isnt what I signed up for". Its not what I wanted or thought it would be and I am so angry at him all the time that this is what our marriage has become. I feel so petty being in so much turmoil over sex, but without intimacy.. I feel like I am just living with a roommate. Or a friend. Not a lover and a partner. :(

I am at a loss. I have no idea what to do. I believe in marriage and my vows but… I dont know how I can continue this way. It makes "forever" seem daunting. Miserable. Please help.
 

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I'm sorry you're in this situation.

Is there any history of abuse in his childhood?

What is his reaction when you initiate sex?
Is he happy or do it out of duty?

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Discussion Starter #3
I'm sorry you're in this situation.

Is there any history of abuse in his childhood?

What is his reaction when you initiate sex?
Is he happy or do it out of duty?

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Yes, he does have a history of abuse. I found out after we got married, but that pretty much sums up all I know about it. He won't about it to me or anyone. When I try to initiate sex he usually denies me. Or he will do it, but definitely out of obligation. There is no... connection with it. I feel like before we got married he was just pretending to keep me happy. I do believe he loves me but.. he just has zero interest in a sexual relationship.
 

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This is a common and really miserable situation. Please read the many threads here on this topic, mostly in the sex-in-marriage forum. There is a lot of useful discussion, or at least commiseration from other people in the same situation.

This seems to divide into 2 basic categories:

1). The lack of sex is a symptom of some other problem. It might be you physically, or your behavior. It might be some other marriage problem.

2). He has an innate low desire for sex. It has nothing to do with anything you are or are not doing. (this includes the possibility that he is gay, but there are many asexual people as well).

For #1: Since he has said that this has been a problem before, I think in your case this is very unlikely. I assume you have already thought about any obvious issues. For men with normal desire, minor issues, and in particular minor physical issues are not a problem.

#2 is unfortunately very difficult to fix. There are some people who just have a very low interest in sex (low desire , LD). They rarely change. Some of us have been married to partners like that for DECADES, hoping, trying everything, and it doesn't get better.

If you have thought carefully, and there is no particular reason he doesn't want sex, then you may be faced with a terrible choice.

Leave, Cheat, Live like a nun.

Its your choice. Just don't expect it to "get better". I can tell you that in my case after 30 years of waiting, often it never does. The longer you wait, the more difficult it becomes to leave.

Don't get pregnant until this is worked out! That will leave you trapped. This is VERY important - there are many stories here of LD people who were happy to have sex for the purpose of having a child.
 

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This is a common and really miserable situation. Please read the many threads here on this topic, mostly in the sex-in-marriage forum. There is a lot of useful discussion, or at least commiseration from other people in the same situation.

This seems to divide into 2 basic categories:

1). The lack of sex is a symptom of some other problem. It might be you physically, or your behavior. It might be some other marriage problem.

2). He has an innate low desire for sex. It has nothing to do with anything you are or are not doing. (this includes the possibility that he is gay, but there are many asexual people as well).

For #1: Since he has said that this has been a problem before, I think in your case this is very unlikely. I assume you have already thought about any obvious issues. For men with normal desire, minor issues, and in particular minor physical issues are not a problem.

#2 is unfortunately very difficult to fix. There are some people who just have a very low interest in sex (low desire , LD). They rarely change. Some of us have been married to partners like that for DECADES, hoping, trying everything, and it doesn't get better.

If you have thought carefully, and there is no particular reason he doesn't want sex, then you may be faced with a terrible choice.

Leave, Cheat, Live like a nun.

Its your choice. Just don't expect it to "get better". I can tell you that in my case after 30 years of waiting, often it never does. The longer you wait, the more difficult it becomes to leave.

Don't get pregnant until this is worked out! That will leave you trapped. This is VERY important - there are many stories here of LD people who were happy to have sex for the purpose of having a child.
Thank you for such a thoughtful reply. I feel like sometimes I know that divorce is inevitable because unless someone has an answer or a "fix" I don't think it will change. I just dont want to hurt him. I do love him so its like choosing "nun life" or causing him pain and neither is something I want lol.

I will try the other thread. Thank you again.
 

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Because of his unwillingness to get help from his past trauma this will not be an easy fix.

But know that you shouldn't feel self conscious or unattractive, because it's not that he doesn't want you but he needs help to overcome his issues.

Does he display any type of affection towards you?

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Because of his unwillingness to get help from his past trauma this will not be an easy fix.

But know that you shouldn't feel self conscious or unattractive, because it's not that he doesn't want you but he needs help to overcome his issues.

Does he display any type of affection towards you?

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He does sometimes, but it's rather rare beyond the peck goodbye when he leaves for work. Most of the time he shows any type of "real" affection is when we are in public. Which only makes me more mad because I feel like it is just for show. He could be super sweet and affectionate when we are out somewhere and I will feel like when we get home we might actually... get it on... but as soon as we are alone again its like something switches off and it's back to the same old thing.
 

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Its a really difficult decision.

I am in this situation with my wife. I spent years trying to figure out what I was doing wrong. I did everything she wanted in bed, found things she had never imagined that physically pleased her. She would tell me things I needed to change, but she didn't understand herself why she wasn't interested. No amount of my becoming everything she wanted in a man helped.

I tried explaining to her how I felt. It never worked, she never understood the importance, would refer to me as a "child who sulks because he can't get dessert". (this after months without intimacy)

Once I was about to divorce her (hadn't actually said it yet but was minutes away from doing so). She promised things would improve - and they did, sex was wonderful - for about 3 months. Then it declined again. Later attempts worked briefly, but then failed. I realized that she was having sex out of fear of my leaving, not because she wanted it. I don't want sex under threat.

All this took so long - literally decades. After 25 years we had been married too long for me to leave her, so I stay. The rest of our marriage is good. I not longer complain or worry about sex, its just not part of my life.

I'm posting this so that you can see how easy it is for this sort of problem to stretch out in time. There are improvements, failures, hopes. The longer it goes on, the more difficult it is to leave because of a lack of sex.


Give yourself a deadline and stick to it. If you are planning to leave, then things improve, if theyt ever decline again, leave.


True LD people (as I expect your husband is) ,don't want sex, don't know why they don't want sex, and dont' care that they don't want sex.


Thank you for such a thoughtful reply. I feel like sometimes I know that divorce is inevitable because unless someone has an answer or a "fix" I don't think it will change. I just dont want to hurt him. I do love him so its like choosing "nun life" or causing him pain and neither is something I want lol.

I will try the other thread. Thank you again.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Its a really difficult decision.

I am in this situation with my wife. I spent years trying to figure out what I was doing wrong. I did everything she wanted in bed, found things she had never imagined that physically pleased her. She would tell me things I needed to change, but she didn't understand herself why she wasn't interested. No amount of my becoming everything she wanted in a man helped.

I tried explaining to her how I felt. It never worked, she never understood the importance, would refer to me as a "child who sulks because he can't get dessert". (this after months without intimacy)

Once I was about to divorce her (hadn't actually said it yet but was minutes away from doing so). She promised things would improve - and they did, sex was wonderful - for about 3 months. Then it declined again. Later attempts worked briefly, but then failed. I realized that she was having sex out of fear of my leaving, not because she wanted it. I don't want sex under threat.

All this took so long - literally decades. After 25 years we had been married too long for me to leave her, so I stay. The rest of our marriage is good. I not longer complain or worry about sex, its just not part of my life.

I'm posting this so that you can see how easy it is for this sort of problem to stretch out in time. There are improvements, failures, hopes. The longer it goes on, the more difficult it is to leave because of a lack of sex.


Give yourself a deadline and stick to it. If you are planning to leave, then things improve, if theyt ever decline again, leave.


True LD people (as I expect your husband is) ,don't want sex, don't know why they don't want sex, and dont care that they don't want sex.
I am sorry you have been in this situation for so long. I can't imagine! You are much more devoted than I am. To be honest, I am afraid I will end up cheating if I doesn't change or I don't leave, which is something I have never done or thought I would do. He just doesn't understand that its not "just sex" to me.

I have done everything I can thing of to entice him.. lingerie, sex toys, other embarrassing things (lol). He just don't want it.

I am kind of rambling now lol. Thank you again.
 

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For better or worse, it honestly sounds like you two are just not compatible sexually, and would probably be better off in the long run with someone more on each of your individual level.

I would of course suggest counseling, getting his t levels, etc... but if he doesn't want to work on it unfortunately there is very little you can do.

On the "bright" side, given your age and it doesn't sound like you have children involved, now may be the best time (as painful as it may be) to move on.
 

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Please help... I am so lost on what to do with my marriage. My husband and I have been married for 5 years. I am 27 and he 38. Sex has always been an issue in our relationship. Of course in the beginning, it was more frequent, but still my drive was much higher. About a year after we got married sex became nearly non-existant. We have fought and fought over it. Most recently, I flat out told him I would not stay in a sexless marriage. It broke my heart to see how deeply my saying that hurt him, but his lack of willingness to share intimacy with me is turning me into someone I cant stand. I am self conscious, I feel unattractive, unwanted, undesired. Constantly asking what is wrong with me, when I never did before. I need and crave an intimate connection with him, but no matter how hard I try (sexual and non sexual), it never improves. I love him as a person, our relationship outside of sex is great. I know I would miss him dearly if I divorced him, but at the same time… I am 27. My sex drive and curiosity now is higher than it has ever been. I can’t even discuss sex with him or without him shutting down. The only time we have sex is if I instigate it, and at this point, I am tired of basically begging for sex. He told me that sex has never been important to him and it has always affected his past relationships (granted he told me this after 4 years of fighting about sex). He won't go to counseling, he has said more times than he can count that he will "work on it" but that lasts about a week or two and its right back where we were. I feel cheated and betrayed. I love him and I dont want to hurt him, but I find myself constantly saying to myself, "this isnt what I signed up for". Its not what I wanted or thought it would be and I am so angry at him all the time that this is what our marriage has become. I feel so petty being in so much turmoil over sex, but without intimacy.. I feel like I am just living with a roommate. Or a friend. Not a lover and a partner. :(

I am at a loss. I have no idea what to do. I believe in marriage and my vows but… I dont know how I can continue this way. It makes "forever" seem daunting. Miserable. Please help.
It wasn't just you that made vows, he made the same vows. They are vows to each other and they only have any meaning when they are made in genuine honesty. Don't think that you need to keep to vows that he doesn't intend to makes you a good person. It makes you a trapped person.

He does sometimes, but it's rather rare beyond the peck goodbye when he leaves for work. Most of the time he shows any type of "real" affection is when we are in public. Which only makes me more mad because I feel like it is just for show. He could be super sweet and affectionate when we are out somewhere and I will feel like when we get home we might actually... get it on... but as soon as we are alone again its like something switches off and it's back to the same old thing.
My XW was exactly the same. If we were out with friends or with family then it was all love and affection, sitting with arms round each other. When it finally dawned on me that this was just a show so that everyone else thought we had a good marriage it just made me more resentful.

Yes, he does have a history of abuse. I found out after we got married, but that pretty much sums up all I know about it. He won't about it to me or anyone. When I try to initiate sex he usually denies me. Or he will do it, but definitely out of obligation. There is no... connection with it. I feel like before we got married he was just pretending to keep me happy. I do believe he loves me but.. he just has zero interest in a sexual relationship.
Again exactly like my XW. She even said in counseling that an intimacy had never been important to her as though it was no big deal and quite normal. It's now that I am out of the situation and see her parents from a distance that I realize where she learned that from.

I am sorry you have been in this situation for so long. I can't imagine! You are much more devoted than I am. To be honest, I am afraid I will end up cheating if I doesn't change or I don't leave, which is something I have never done or thought I would do. He just doesn't understand that its not "just sex" to me.

I have done everything I can thing of to entice him.. lingerie, sex toys, other embarrassing things (lol). He just don't want it.

I am kind of rambling now lol. Thank you again.
There comes a point when you need to protect yourself and your dignity. No one who really loves someone makes them beg for sex and affection.

You need to let him know that you've made the efforts and the ball is in his court now. He has to get help and HE needs to bring intimacy into the relationship as he committed to do during your wedding, he managed to make the effort while you were engaged.

Give him a firm deadline by which you need to see a real difference and if it isn't met you'll take that as his agreement to the divorce. For gods sake make sure that you are on birth control in case it happens. Don't leave it up to him.
 

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In your shoes I would schedule MC without even asking him. Just do it. Then attend and let him know you are going. I would let one visit slide so he can ponder this. He might be very uncomfortable knowing you are sharing details about him without him being there and that might motivate him.

On the second visit, I would start to establish clearer boundaries and consequences. "I'm doing this because I think our marriage is worth saving. If you don't go with me, then I know that you aren't willing to work to save our marriage." Don't fight and let him respond, but don't let his response sway you.

After the second visit, decide if you want to continue if you're the only one working to save the marriage.

In MC bring up the abuse and your suspicion this is why he denies you intimacy. And I would phrase it that way because that's the way I see it.

I've got 30+ years with someone the polar opposite of me and it's a great marriage. But both have to be willing to listen and respond to the needs of the other.



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@JenGel
Sexual abuse is something that can affect a person for years and years if left untreated.

The emotional scars left behind can be something that the person doesn't even realize what they are doing, they don't even realize what rejection they may put their partners through.
It took me around 9 years, lots of therapy, still doing therapy, but I made those decisions on my own to get help.

While your husband is probably the nicest guy in the world, he may not want help, he may think he doesn't need it.
Nothing will change if your husband is in denial.

He may sign up for say sex therapy but not follow through with homework. You could be in for years of frustrations.

Calling to @Holdingontoit for more advice on this.



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Any chance he's gay?

I'm being totally serious. The overly-affectionate-in-public thing has me thinking that you're his "beard".
 

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Any chance he's gay?

I'm being totally serious. The overly-affectionate-in-public thing has me thinking that you're his "beard".
Beard? I am not sure what that means Lol. I suppose it is possible. I have asked before, and of course he said no and got mad that I even asked. He is incredibly homophobic. Honestly, I think if he told me he was gay I might be... relieved. I dont even think I would be angry except for wasted time. At least then it wasnt me. Lol.
 

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Beard? I am not sure what that means Lol. I suppose it is possible. I have asked before, and of course he said no and got mad that I even asked. He is incredibly homophobic. Honestly, I think if he told me he was gay I might be... relieved. I dont even think I would be angry except for wasted time. At least then it wasnt me. Lol.
Beard as in disguise.

As in a cover for homosexuality.

Any kids? If not I'd just pull the plug.

Paging @CatJayBird...
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