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StillBreathing

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  1. My fiance (32) and I (33) have been together for 3 years (engaged for a few months now) and live together. We love each other and get along very well, but infrequent sex is making me feel awful. I will admit I'm not the best at asking for it, because I don't know how to do it without feeling/acting awkward, and because I take it very personally if I get turned down. My fiance is not the greatest in asking for it either, as we average about once every 1 - 1 1/2 weeks. It's always been this way for the most part. He is out of town often and frequently only home on the weekends. So if we don't have sex on Fri or Sat night, generally speaking it isn't happening at all that week. I trust him, I just don't understand why he is isn't more interested. We don't ever sext, as he says it's because his phone is his work phone ( it's the only one he has and he uses it for everything personal). I have tried a few times but I don't ever get any feedback/participation other than an emoji or a "me too". We don't talk dirty to one another other than while we're having sex, and usually it's only me doing it. I have asked him many times if he wants to do anything different or specifically what he likes, but I always get "I like everything" and "I like this (i.e. what we are already doing). He doesn't seem to care too much about me dressing up in nice lingerie (though he says "If you like doing it, then go ahead!") so I don't bother anymore because I feel silly. He does always tell me I'm beautiful in/out of the bedroom and will tell me I'm sexy, in the bedroom. Otherwise we are very loving towards one another and we hold hands, cuddle on the couch, touch, etc. all the time. It hurts me because we were friends before we were together and I can remember him chatting back then about how he didn't really like XYZ girl too much but that they dated anyway "because sex", or that he and his ex stayed together longer than they should have "because sex". And then there's me, engaged to him and living with him, and this latest stretch has been 3 1/2 weeks without anything. We went without sex for a month once before and when I tearfully mentioned it to him, he said he had been so busy with work that he hadn't noticed. Ouch. I've tried to talk to him about it (without mentioning stuff in the second paragraph above, as that would likely just piss him off) but he gets defensive. I have turned him down maybe 3 times ever, so I don't think he's worried about that. When I bring it up, he says I can ask for sex too, but the few times I work up the nerve, he is often too tired. Sometimes we try anyway and he will be too tired to finish. I don't really know how to ask without feeling like an idiot, honestly. It's hard for me to work up the nerve to be assertive when I don't feel all that desired in the first place. I feel like I'm bothering him. It hurts me that the lack of frequency doesn't seem to bother him. I reiterate that I don't believe this is a cheating or trust issue - it's a communication problem and I don't know how to fix it. Help, please, and I beg you to please be kind, as it's a sore subject EDIT: I should probably add that in a previous relationship I was in, my ex was always asking me for sex and I was always turning him down. I turned him down because I wasn't attracted to him and didn't want to sleep with him. (Long story, but I fully realize that was a bad situation). Basically I'm afraid of this situation happening again, except with me being the needy nag this time and with my fiance being the one who isn't really attracted to me.
  2. My previous therapist said (to paraphrase) that they are just friends and that it's okay for him to have friends that he vents to; that it doesn't make sense that he would vent to me so of course he needs someone else to vent; that he didn't leave after the fight initially happened so it doesn't make sense that he would leave later on when we have worked through the worst of it. I no longer see that counselor as I didnt feel she was helpful (we just sat there and chatted, it wasn't really useful therapy). I only broached this topic with my current counselor once so far (that's why I'm freaking out about all of this and posting this question - the emotions and panic are overwhelming after having discussed this yesterday). She helped me break down my anxiety about it and said that it really sounds like this fear is rooted in me not believing that I'm good enough and me fearing abandonment and loss of my support system (i.e. "He doesn't love me" and "He's going to leave and I'll be alone and I won't know what to do"). She is beginning CBT and EDMR therapy with me to address these negative beliefs. I did tell him that talking about relationship problems to her or our mutual friends was not okay with me ever, and to please not do it. I also asked him to never lie to me about anything ever again, and he said he would not. I don't think he understood how devastating all of this was for me until I said those things to him. I have trouble making myself clear and speaking my mind sometimes as I GREATLY fear negative fallout and fighting.
  3. Just that he's using her as a shoulder to cry on when he's mad at me. Maybe I'm just blowing this out of proportion. I'm sorry if I sound like an idiot, this stuff is just so damned hard for me to process clearly.
  4. Because we had a fight earlier in the month (unrelated) and he reached out to her on that day by text. (I found out via social media as a comment was made about their conversation). I was not mentioned, and I don't know if it was a coincidence or not, but it made me worry that "it's happening again".
  5. I'm terrified of doing the wrong thing here. I want this to work so badly. It's been a year since this fight and things have gotten better but I still don't have closure. I'm so afraid of sparking another huge fight by bringing it up yet again. I don't know if I can handle the stress of that again. I don't want to, I just want things to be wonderful like they normally are. I'm sorry for venting and losing it, I just don't know what to do and I don't have a real-life support system.
  6. I just started recently, so it's early stages but it's going. It's incredibly hard work, to the point where it's devastating some days (kiiiinda like today). It's so hard to tell what is a real problem (this?) and what is fallout from the trauma. That's why I came here to ask other people. My body and mind are so constantly in panic mode that it's very hard to tell. Everyone says "trust your gut feeling" but I think that is precisely my problem - my gut tells me that EVERYthing is out to get me and that EVERYthing is wrong.
  7. Thank you. We are both trying really hard. I have PTSD and severe anxiety issues and this situation (looking for evidence that I am indeed unloveable, not good enough and that no one wants me) is unfortunately the main way these anxiety problems manifest themselves. I'm working with a trauma counselor. It's effing hard but I'm not going to stop trying to get better.
  8. Nah I was kind of vague, sorry. She and I were friends, or friendly anyway - we're all in the same group of friends. Then this all hit the fan. I took her out to lunch to apologize face to face and that seemed to go okay. She showed up for my birthday (when my BF invited her anyway, along with the rest of the group). Sometimes she seems okay with me and other times chilly. I don't know what to make of it but it (i.e. her likely distaste for me and all the trouble this fight that I started caused) causes me such distress that I'd rather keep my distance to keep the panic at bay. Before this relationship, I was in an abusive relationship for years. So, now I have PTSD and severe anxiety that basically stem from "I'm an idiot"/"I'm worthless"/"No one wants you"/"You're going to be abandoned and left without a support system" fears. I am working with a trauma counselor on all of it, but sadly addressing these problems makes the wounds fresh again, hence my post here I guess. Boyfriend and Female Friend know I am working through these issues. I dont know why he stays with someone like me.
  9. I am the girlfriend in this situation, yet I agree with everything you said. Thank you for weighing in on this, I appreciate it. Yours is a perspective I need to gain a much better understanding of.
  10. Haha no. That was before any fights, and I think that was just general politeness as she knows both of us. I don't think either one of them mention me anymore.
  11. I didn't think about it like that - thank you. That makes a lot of sense.
  12. I came up once or twice when Boyfriend was worried I was stressed out about his stressful job, and Female Friend assured him I'd be fine. Other than general "How are you and Girlfriend doing", I don't seem to be discussed much.
  13. I should have clarified - Boyfriend and Female Friend grew up together. They were friends, somehow hooked up a few times in early college years, and then went back to being friends. It's like a 15+ year friendship.
  14. Here is a situation between a Girlfriend, a Boyfriend, and a Female Friend. The bold portions indicate reasons why this could simply be considered a close friendship and not emotional infidelity: 1. Girlfriend, who is very insecure, expressed discomfort about a longstanding friendship that Boyfriend has with his Female Friend. This was not the first time Girlfriend felt threatened by another female simply being in contact with Boyfriend. (Boyfriend and Female Friend did sleep together a few times years before Girlfriend was in the picture, but they never dated or had a relationship. Boyfriend said he never wanted to date her - he had many opportunities to do so over the years). 2. Boyfriend stopped by Female Friend's house to help her with something, but does not mention this detour to Girlfriend. Girlfriend snoops through Boyfriend's phone, says something along the lines of "Are you SURE that's all you did that day?" and Boyfriend fails to admit his visit to Female Friend in order to avoid getting hassled by Girlfriend. 3. Boyfriend invites Female Friend out for a bike ride (mutual interest that Girlfriend doesn't share), but Female Friend is injured and cannot. Boyfriend then then invites Girlfriend out for a run (a mutual interest they share), possibly out of guilt. 4. Girlfriend goes through Boyfriend's texts again and sees many "reminiscing" texts about fun things Boyfriend and Female Friend did years ago. Female Friend goes so far as to say "Who sleeps with their best friend and lives to tell about it? We do!" 5. Boyfriend tells Girlfriend that he finds Female Friend's constant talking annoying much of the time and on occasion says he "can't really stand her". Boyfriend, however, tells Female Friend that he is one of her best friends and that he loves her and misses her (in a "friend" way, not romantic way). 6. Girlfriend blows up about #2 and asks Boyfriend to not see Female Friend alone anymore. Boyfriend is furious, says he never wants to see Female Friend again. 7. Girlfriend repents and takes it all back, and begs a fuming Boyfriend not to tell Female Friend about this fight. Boyfriend says he won't, but in fact gets together with Female Friend the next day to tell her about it. 8. Girlfriend repeatedly asks if Boyfriend has told Female Friend about this fight and he denies it. However, he continues to discuss the fight and the state of relationship with Female Friend over the course of several months. However, nothing bad was ever said about Girlfriend by either party. Boyfriend did go so far as to say "We are having some trouble right now but we will be 100% okay once we work through this." 9. Girlfriend finally confronts Boyfriend about how she knows Boyfriend told Female Friend about the fight, and Boyfriend denies knowing how Female Friend found out. Female Friend privately acknowledged to Boyfriend that he should not have lied to Girlfriend about this. 10. Boyfriend finally acknowledges that lying was wrong and that discussing relationship problems with Female Friend was wrong. 11. Boyfriend still reaches out via text to Female Friend (possibly on the very rare occasions that he and Girlfriend are fighting); however, discussion of any relationship problems have ceased. Only reminiscing and run of the mill catching up occur. Boyfriend did inform Girlfriend about having made plans with Female Friend and a third person, but ended up cancelling these plans later. 12. Boyfriend has always been supportive, devoted and loving to Girlfriend, both publicly and privately. Large commitments have been made (house purchase, marriage proposal plans). Boyfriend is as affectionate and loving towards Girlfriend in Female Friend's presence as he is when not in her presence. Again, neither Boyfriend nor Female Friend discussed Girlfriend in a negative way (aside from expressing shock and disappointment at her suspicions). My feelings: Boyfriend and Female Friend didn't appropriately change their friendship once Girlfriend entered the picture. They don't understand how or why their friendship was hurtful to Girlfriend and instead were simply confused by her reaction. Boyfriend was wrong for lying to Girlfriend. Girlfriend is overly insecure and possessive. Girlfriend is wrong for snooping through text messages and for attempting to control Boyfriend's social life. Both parties reacted inappropriately but are now behaving more appropriately. At least, that's MY view. Any agree/disagree or thoughts on this situation would be greatly appreciated! Thanks.
  15. DancingFool, Thank you so much for your response. You explained it perfectly, and the rules you outlined are an excellent idea too. While they may not apply to everyone, I think they are a must for people who have been abused. I'm afraid of ending up in the same situation someday and I am more than happy to take every precaution against that happening! Thanks again for your help.
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