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Is it me? A frustrated husband/father.


Gage
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Hello all..My first original post is somewhat similar to this..so please bare with me and hope to get some needed input..I along with many others from what I read were VERY skeptical about getting online advice. My wife and I have plans to go to a counselor, but that too has me worried. Ive heard horror stories. Anyway, here I go....

 

After a decade of marriage, kids, my wife and I still have what I consider a good solid relationship that is except for sex. I dont know if this topic will get moved, but I really wanted opinions from married or at least previousely married people. After several years of MINIMAL( almost non-existant) sex my wife and I have begun rekindling our romance. For a variety of reasons..kids, work, new home..we both let our sex life become second fiddle to almost everything. The thing is I dont really know if its the sex, or the emotional aspect of it which Im craving. When we both decided we needed to work on "OUR" lives it was awkward. I felt like a kid not knowing what to do. I was always pretty "fun" in bed..I like foreplay a lot and sometimes really could do without "sex" per se and just enjoy some other forms of fooling around. My wife on the other hand will have nothing to do with me pleasing her other than intercourse. This was never the case when we first met and several years after our initial getting together. Whats troubling to me is that I feel absolutely zero "DESIRE" on her part. This has caused me to feel somewhat insecure and is beginning to effect me sexually..ie..performance anxiety. My wife treats our sex life now as a job. There have been instances where I was unable to perform and I realize now, that what always went through my mind is "she really doesnt want to be doing this".My wife has no trouble having orgasms, but its only one way and its becoming mundane. I really dont know what to do. I mean I could write 50 pages on more detail.

 

I am more jealous than I have ever been and I never was. My wife recently had breast augmentation...she looks fantastic, I am very fit, we are both a very good looking couple. It seems that much of this started when my wife decided to get her boobs done. Only 3 months prior to her procedure is when we began having sex again. Whats wrong with me? Us? I know my wife loves me and I love her 100% unconditionally. But it seems like soooo much work to be intimate and it shouldnt be.. I really dont know what to do. I have bad thoughts going through my head all the time, like shes having an affair and thats why shes not showing me that she desires me. Probably doesnt help that almost all of her friends have recently gone through divorce and a few of those blowups were due to the wives having SO on the side. I'm rambling...I need this stress to stop...its consuming me.

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I think every marriage goes through a time when the sex cools off. You are not unique. What about giving your wife what she wants for a period of time. What about mixing things up and having a quickie, rather than having longer foreplay, and then you can get back to the foreplay. or go away for a weekend together without kids and find a nice hotel...

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We actually did do the hotel thing and we had a GREAT time. I suppose you have a point that every marriage at some point will go through highs and lows. Its just odd that these feelings have surfaced now, at my age( late 30's). Its kind of a double edged sword...harping on sex constantly can have negative consequences as well...Perhaps after such a dry spell its going to take more than a few months to get "IT" back.

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  • 4 months later...

Thank-you so much for posting this - I hope things are going well for you. I am going through almost the exact same thing and it's nice to hear that I am not a total wingnut (or at least that there are other wingnuts out there too). My wife and I have sex on a semi-regular basis but it just seems that her heart really isn't in it and she's doing it out of a sense of obligation. I don't know if it's worse having sex with someone who could seemingly care less or to just not have it at all and take things into my own hands. While she hasn't had implants, she has been working very hard at getting in shape, buying new sexy clothes, new haircut, tanning and she looks great. I crave her right now more than I ever have and it seems that she desires me less than she ever has. I want to talk to her about it - as I have in the past - but am afraid of pushing her away and making things awkward and uncomfortable for us. We are taking a weekend away without the kids, work, etc... this Friday and I am hoping we can really connect. What I am afraid is going to happen though is that I am going to want intimacy and passion and she is not, and things are going to go downhill. I feel that I need to talk to her before we leave but don't want to ruin the weekend before it starts.

 

Like Gage, I am a bit uncomfortable with her relationship with her friends. While there are not many divorces happening in our circles, her two best friends have somewhat contrived relationships with their husbands. I know that they don't get a ton of attention from their husbands and I think they sometimes have a sense of entitlement in terms of getting attention from the opposite sex. Add to that a bit of alcohol and that my wife's natural disposition may come accross as a little flirty and I get a little concerned when they are out. I don't think my wife would ever let things get out of hand but I can't help but to worry about it. She has displayed a few instances of not using her head when she was out with them but I won't get into that here. Nothing serious ever happened but she did put herself into a bad position once or twice. During the conversations I've had with my wife about sex, she always points out that we have sex way more than any of her friends, though she never mentions that her friends are always complaining about the lack of desire they get from their spouses and how it makes them feel unnatractive and unwanted. But I digress, this isn't about her relationship with her friends...

 

I don't think my wife finds anything wrong with our relationship the way it is, and I am pretty sure she feels that whatever I am feeling is all about me and not us. I should add that I am fairly attractive and while I could lose 10-15 pounds I am in pretty decent shape. The bottom line is that I can feel myself falling into that downward sprial of jealousy, despair, suspispicion and depression. I am having trouble sleeping because I just dwell about this at night. I know that these are self-destructive feeling and emotions that will ultimately cause her to pull away even more. My self-esteem is going downhill fast and I really need to get myself pointed in the right direction. Right now I honestly feel like she could do better than me if she wanted and my biggest fear is that she'll eventually realize it. I think that would be a long ways off but once the ball is set in motion it can be difficult to stop. I don't know what I am looking for here, I really just wanted to be able to get my feelings out there and see if it helps offer some clarity and resolve on my part. If anyone wants to comment, please do. And in particular, do you think I should talk with her before our weekend getaway or just wait and see how it plays out?

 

Thanks for listening.

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Thank-you so much for posting this - I hope things are going well for you. I am going through almost the exact same thing and it's nice to hear that I am not a total wingnut (or at least that there are other wingnuts out there too). My wife and I have sex on a semi-regular basis but it just seems that her heart really isn't in it and she's doing it out of a sense of obligation. I don't know if it's worse having sex with someone who could seemingly care less or to just not have it at all and take things into my own hands. While she hasn't had implants, she has been working very hard at getting in shape, buying new sexy clothes, new haircut, tanning and she looks great. I crave her right now more than I ever have and it seems that she desires me less than she ever has. I want to talk to her about it - as I have in the past - but am afraid of pushing her away and making things awkward and uncomfortable for us. We are taking a weekend away without the kids, work, etc... this Friday and I am hoping we can really connect. What I am afraid is going to happen though is that I am going to want intimacy and passion and she is not, and things are going to go downhill. I feel that I need to talk to her before we leave but don't want to ruin the weekend before it starts.

 

Like Gage, I am a bit uncomfortable with her relationship with her friends. While there are not many divorces happening in our circles, her two best friends have somewhat contrived relationships with their husbands. I know that they don't get a ton of attention from their husbands and I think they sometimes have a sense of entitlement in terms of getting attention from the opposite sex. Add to that a bit of alcohol and that my wife's natural disposition may come accross as a little flirty and I get a little concerned when they are out. I don't think my wife would ever let things get out of hand but I can't help but to worry about it. She has displayed a few instances of not using her head when she was out with them but I won't get into that here. Nothing serious ever happened but she did put herself into a bad position once or twice. During the conversations I've had with my wife about sex, she always points out that we have sex way more than any of her friends, though she never mentions that her friends are always complaining about the lack of desire they get from their spouses and how it makes them feel unnatractive and unwanted. But I digress, this isn't about her relationship with her friends...

 

I don't think my wife finds anything wrong with our relationship the way it is, and I am pretty sure she feels that whatever I am feeling is all about me and not us. I should add that I am fairly attractive and while I could lose 10-15 pounds I am in pretty decent shape. The bottom line is that I can feel myself falling into that downward sprial of jealousy, despair, suspispicion and depression. I am having trouble sleeping because I just dwell about this at night. I know that these are self-destructive feeling and emotions that will ultimately cause her to pull away even more. My self-esteem is going downhill fast and I really need to get myself pointed in the right direction. Right now I honestly feel like she could do better than me if she wanted and my biggest fear is that she'll eventually realize it. I think that would be a long ways off but once the ball is set in motion it can be difficult to stop. I don't know what I am looking for here, I really just wanted to be able to get my feelings out there and see if it helps offer some clarity and resolve on my part. If anyone wants to comment, please do. And in particular, do you think I should talk with her before our weekend getaway or just wait and see how it plays out?

 

Thanks for listening.

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Good luck this weekend. I've been down your road before, and I don't really have a crystal ball. Some women just lose interest in sex - especially around middle age and in the midst of raising kids. But likewise, some women get bored and emotionally walk away from their marriage. They want attention they aren't getting at home. Especially if she's going out with the girls more frequently, and starting to get herself in shape and wearing sexier clothes - these are both warning signs that she may be looking outside of your marriage. Hopefully she's just looking for harmless flirtations (so far).

 

I wouldn't talk to her before you leave. I'd be optimistic, pleasant and attentive - see where her attitude goes. If she isn't returning your affection, I'd make it one of your first conversations after you get there and get settled in. Just her agreeing to go away for the weekend is a good sign. It sounds like you two need the time alone. It sounds like you have quite a bit to talk about. Use your weekend wisely. Try to "reconnect," and talk to each other about how to get out of your rut once you get home. Good luck.

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In an LTR myself, and want to look great for my husband. We definitely have had our "seasons" when we are not as frequent as I'd like, and some times my mind is on other things as well. But no matter what I love him and want to go the distance in this marriage. Maybe she's testing the waters to see how much you want to keep her?

 

I've even been thinking about a "lift" myself to improve upon what nature gave me, which is starting to look less attractive no matter what exercises I do. I would expect a lot of compliments and attention from my husband for the lengths I (would) go to to be attractive for him, as it is a lot more important to him than to me.

 

I think men really like it when their wife is hot and is desired by other men, as long as the line isn't crossed into infidelity. After all, if no one ever gave her a second look you might not think she was attractive, either.

 

Good luck this weekend... maybe you can call back some of the things you used to do/say to make her feel like the ONLY, the SEXIEST, the most AWESOME woman in the world.

 

(Throw a couple candles and some body lotion in the bag too)

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Thanks for the replies. I'll try to leave the issue alone with her until during or after the trip, although I don't know if I'll be able to. I've got a pit in my stomach kind of like when you break up with a girlfriend, only it is ten times worse. I went and worked out last night to try to feel better about myself. It helped a little until I got home at 9:30 and everyone was asleep, including my son who was next to her in bed. After I took my son to his bed and came back to change my clothes she half woke up and complained about me making too much noise and then went back to sleep. I blew some time by browsing this site and finally tried to go to bed around 11:00. I had a tough time getting to sleep and didn't go down until about 2:00. I have to say that 1/2 the time I feel like a whack job. That I'm making a mountain out of a molehill and that I am actually perpetuating the situation by my mood and behavior. The other half of the time I feel convinced that my wife has lost interest in me and is just going through the motions - that our relationship has become an empty shell and lacks any real emotion and intamacy (at least on her part).

 

I do need to clarify a couple of things. First, I really doubt that she is actively or consciously looking for anything outside of our marriage. She is not that type of person and I would be very surprised if that was the case. She actually is not going out with her friends much either lately. However, her behaivor with her friends has been the source of similar feelings and emotions in the past. Also, I don't think she would leave me unless things got really bad - much worse than they are right now. And as I said before, I don't think she sees anything wrong with our relationship right now, although I am pretty sure she knows something is up with me. Rather, I think she would simply accept the situation and deal with it by filling her emotional needs with our kids and her friends. I, on the other hand, really need to have that connection with her and I am miserable without it. Of course I could be ignorant and be wrong on all those accounts but I am going to give her the benefit of the doubt. I am certain that she would have a serious talk with me and take up counceling with me before things went that far. She really is a great person, mother and (in most regards) wife. I hope I am not making her sound like a b**** because that is far from the truth.

 

There are a few other things that I should disclose. First, she is very successful in her career and makes many times what I make in income. I stayed home for a few years with our first child and went back to work after the second a couple of years ago. I have been mildly successful in my new career but not enough yet to even support a family. At times that can make me feel a bit inferior to her and I am sure it doesn't help her in terms of being attracted to me. I am doing what I've always wanted to do though and there is alot of potential if it works out. Plus, I do contribute a significant amount to her business but don't really get paid for it and I do my share around the house. Second, this isn't the first time I have dealt with this. It usually coincides with her getting in shape and feeling good about herself. Whether that puts her on a higher plane than me in her eyes, or causes me to take up irrational thoughts and emotions because I feel inadequate is tough to say. Maybe it's a combination of the two, which would be a bad combination. I can say that if I was in great shape (I'm really not in bad shape now) and more successful in my career I would feel better about myself and that certainly couldn't hurt our relationship. It is tough though. The better my relationship is with my wife, the better I feel about myself and the more confident and successful I am in my life in general. Unfortunately, the opposite is true as well. If things aren't going well with my wife, I have a tough time in the rest of the departments in my life. I know that isn't very healthy and can be a potential drag on her. But isn't that a huge part of being married? Supporting your spouse and being their partner through the good and the bad? It's not like she never felt insecure about my feelings towards her and suspiscous about my actions.

 

Sorry to go on and on but it does help me straighten things out a bit in my head. Kind of like when you go see a therapist and they just listen while you talk. Of course I also really appreciate and look forward to receiving any feedback and truly value your opinions.

 

Thanks again.

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Thanks for the replies. I'll try to leave the issue alone with her until during or after the trip, although I don't know if I'll be able to. I've got a pit in my stomach kind of like when you break up with a girlfriend, only it is ten times worse. I went and worked out last night to try to feel better about myself. It helped a little until I got home at 9:30 and everyone was asleep, including my son who was next to her in bed. After I took my son to his bed and came back to change my clothes she half woke up and complained about me making too much noise and then went back to sleep. I blew some time by browsing this site and finally tried to go to bed around 11:00. I had a tough time getting to sleep and didn't go down until about 2:00. I have to say that 1/2 the time I feel like a whack job. That I'm making a mountain out of a molehill and that I am actually perpetuating the situation by my mood and behavior. The other half of the time I feel convinced that my wife has lost interest in me and is just going through the motions - that our relationship has become an empty shell and lacks any real emotion and intamacy (at least on her part).

 

I do need to clarify a couple of things. First, I really doubt that she is actively or consciously looking for anything outside of our marriage. She is not that type of person and I would be very surprised if that was the case. She actually is not going out with her friends much either lately. However, her behaivor with her friends has been the source of similar feelings and emotions in the past. Also, I don't think she would leave me unless things got really bad - much worse than they are right now. And as I said before, I don't think she sees anything wrong with our relationship right now, although I am pretty sure she knows something is up with me. Rather, I think she would simply accept the situation and deal with it by filling her emotional needs with our kids and her friends. I, on the other hand, really need to have that connection with her and I am miserable without it. Of course I could be ignorant and be wrong on all those accounts but I am going to give her the benefit of the doubt. I am certain that she would have a serious talk with me and take up counceling with me before things went that far. She really is a great person, mother and (in most regards) wife. I hope I am not making her sound like a b**** because that is far from the truth.

 

There are a few other things that I should disclose. First, she is very successful in her career and makes many times what I make in income. I stayed home for a few years with our first child and went back to work after the second a couple of years ago. I have been mildly successful in my new career but not enough yet to even support a family. At times that can make me feel a bit inferior to her and I am sure it doesn't help her in terms of being attracted to me. I am doing what I've always wanted to do though and there is alot of potential if it works out. Plus, I do contribute a significant amount to her business but don't really get paid for it and I do my share around the house. Second, this isn't the first time I have dealt with this. It usually coincides with her getting in shape and feeling good about herself. Whether that puts her on a higher plane than me in her eyes, or causes me to take up irrational thoughts and emotions because I feel inadequate is tough to say. Maybe it's a combination of the two, which would be a bad combination. I can say that if I was in great shape (I'm really not in bad shape now) and more successful in my career I would feel better about myself and that certainly couldn't hurt our relationship. It is tough though. The better my relationship is with my wife, the better I feel about myself and the more confident and successful I am in my life in general. Unfortunately, the opposite is true as well. If things aren't going well with my wife, I have a tough time in the rest of the departments in my life. I know that isn't very healthy and can be a potential drag on her. But isn't that a huge part of being married? Supporting your spouse and being their partner through the good and the bad? It's not like she never felt insecure about my feelings towards her and suspiscous about my actions.

 

Sorry to go on and on but it does help me straighten things out a bit in my head. Kind of like when you go see a therapist and they just listen while you talk. Of course I also really appreciate and look forward to receiving any feedback and truly value your opinions.

 

Thanks again.

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Hello again. I cannot remember where I heard it, but someone once said, "Have you ever met a woman who DIDN'T want a better relationship?"

 

I think it's how we (women) are wired. If I saw a (mutually acceptable) way to improve my relationship with my husband I would go for it without hesitation.

 

As for the income issue, for most of our relationship I've made more money than him, I don't think that is a respect-killer. But for some reason you are feeling "less-than" and that might be seeping through into your relationship with her. Please look at that more closely - she might be tapping into your subconscious signals that you are not feeling up to par, and then she is treating you not up to par. Does that make sense?

 

At any rate it seems like you do have a lot going for you both in the relationship, and I'm so happy for you to be reaching out to people here. You will get a lot of input and from a lot of different points of view! Good luck...

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I'm curious....

 

Was it your idea or hers to get the breast job?

 

 

Is it possible that she felt like she needed to go through this discomfort to keep you interested in her and now feels a tinge of resentment towards you. Maybe she feels she's done this for you and you haven't kept up your end of the bargain.

 

Maybe focus on making sure you compliment her on her inner beauty; like she's a great mother.

 

Just a couple of thoughts. I hope things get better for you.

 

Peace

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I am on a slow connection, so couldn't read every word of all the responses, but what I suggest is that you think back on how you first met. What attracted you to her? What little things did you do to charm her? Did you write little love notes to eachother...the proverbial sticky note in someone's lunch? Do you compliment her on her taste in something or other? Do you tell her not just "i love you" but something you love about her that is small and subtle. I am uncomfortable when people tell me I am beautiful, or am a great (something big), but little things that show that it is not just making a token statement, but you are noticing stuff she does.

 

You want a well rounded woman who feels confident, confident in herself, has outside relationships with girlfriends (when you have different interests, you have more stuff to talk about), as a mother, and as a wife. Maybe the role before had been different.

 

My ex husband didn't like it that I became confident. When i started having friends of my own (i didn't abandon him, but had one afternoon i went out and ran errands with a girlfriend, etc), when people started thinking that my brain had value and they wanted my opinions, he could not take it

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I am happy to hear these responses and that im not alone. My wife and I are seeing a counselor currently and has brought up the possibility of me being slightly depressed. I accepted that as a possibility but am still not getting the emotional connection from my wife. My wife feels completely obligated to have sex and told the counselor that my constant wanting is pushing her away. Truthfully i have become more and more resentful towards her when she doesnt want to fool around and it essentially becomes a viscious circle. I have agreed to spend more time at home away from work, luckily I have the ability to do this. Perhaps more time together will help but I dont feel that is the real fix. I explained to the counselor that it feels as if Im having sex with someone against there will and it has and is effecting my performance as well.

 

My wife is going away this weekend with friends for a work clinic. Shes asking me for places where they can go to eat and have some drinks. Im trying to be ok with it but honestly the thought of her going out without me there is driving me insane. Why do I mistrust her so much? I never used to. One thing is for certain and I told the counselor this...once she stopped initiating sex after the birth of our second daughter things began changing. In hindsight the biggest mistake I made was letting our sex lives drift apart for so long. I am nowquestioning her about previous relationships, how the sex was, frequency etc...and my wife wont talk about it in fear of giving me any possible other reason to feel insecure. Whats my problem. It feels sometimes that I wish I would catch her doing something that would confirm my insescurities...it sounds sick in a way. Im hoping that the counselor will break down some barriers, but for now Im sad and scared for us.

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Hi Gage,

 

Nice to hear you're still around and still making the effort to improve your marriage. I can relate to all that you are saying - even though my details are slightly different. Anyway, 3:00 am and I have been awake for an hour and can't get back to sleep. My wife and I went on our trip about a week ago and had a great time. It was nice having quality time with her and was a bit depressing when we had to come back home to the real world. I kind of talked with her on the drive back from the airport but I didn't really feel like I was able to express myself very well. The conversation seemed to revolve around sex even though what I am feeling goes much deeper than that. In any case, I felt better for most of the last week but now the same feelings are creeping back in. Oh, I also had a deeper conversation with her a few days ago where I told her that I don't feel like we ever make quality time for each other anymore (our weekend away was definitely not a routine thing) and how I felt that we were growing more distant. She assured me she loves me and that she wants to be with me and also told me that what I am feeling has to do with me, not us. So obviously, she feels she is doing her part in our relationship.

 

Nevertheless, I still feel that there is a component of our relationship that is lacking. She has always said how she loves to cuddle and kiss and actually often prefers it to sex. However, for quite a while now I have been the only person who has been reaching out - she never seems to make the effort. Each time I try to hold her or kiss her, she is always the person who stops it. As soon as it gets too intimate for her (not necissarily in a sexual way) she pulls away. And sex is so routine now. No foreplay, her shirt on, under the covers, she usually wants to fit it in during a commercial break, neither of us are "ready" when she decides it's time to go, she has no interest in me pleasing her, she gives me absolutely no feedback and she doesn't seem interested in being close afterwards. I am always so hopeful before we have sex that maybe this time will be that romantic and passionate time but it's always the same. Is it possible that she is having sex for any other reason than out of a sense of obligation? We have actually been having sex quite often but I think she is just appeasing me and trying to make me happy so that I don't bother her. In reality, I would often rather have more quality time with her than sex (ideally I would like both), but am settling for sex because at least it is something to make me feel kind of close to her. I know I should stop having sex with her so much and make myself less available, but it seems like the only way I can feel close at all to her.

 

I don't know what to do. I feel incredibly defeated and am finally wondering if this is how it is going to be from here on out. I truly love her and would rather have this contrived relationship than nothing at all with her, but the thought of 40 more years of this is extremely depressing. I am very hesitant to talk to her about it again as I think it just makes her more aprehensive about being with me in an intimate or emotional way. I would be happy to go to counseling or therapy with her but don't dare bring it up. As I said, she definitely feels that these issues are my issues alone and I almost think she would take it as an insult if I told her that I think that WE need counseling. I'm at a loss as I don't really see things miraculously improving between us any time soon. I mean, how can I expect her to make an effort when she doesn't feel that she is responsible for any of this? And finally, there is that small part of me that wonders if I am just being a nut here. If she maybe is being everything she should be to me and I am being greedy by wanting more. It's hard for me to fathom but in all fairness I need to consider it. Well, I think I've written enough for now. It maybe helped me feel a little better but more than anything passed the time so now I only have a couple of hours until the kids start waking up.

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Thanks for the reply MWC and I do truly understand what your going through..Its amazing not more people have chimed into this. From many male friends I speak with this seems to be a hidden problem in several marriages that seem to never surface.

 

My wife and I are now going to counseling. From the stand point that there is someone unbiased to speak with, it has helped me at least get things off my chest. I had some days where I asked myself "what the hell am I doing here" Im in my 30's, very good looking, body good enough to compete in bodybuilding and I make a lot of money" . But, its the old adage, "we all want what we cant seem to have" right? So, the counselor during the first sessions thought I maybe suffering from mild depression( work related ). She also went on to give the speech that a womans hormone level flip flops as they get older..blah, blah, blah. I agreed that I would begin spending an extra 2 weeks at home from work, essentially working from the house. The counselor suggested that the time away from the family was too much and that it was puttingtoo much pressure on my wife( operating her own biz and taking care of our kids). I agreed. You see my wifes biggest gripe is that after I have been gone for several days, all I want to do is have sex. This is somewhat true, but as you have said many times...its not really the act itself. I'll explain...I told the counselor that for years when we first got married my wife would initiate a lot!. But more so I felt that "desire" from her. Ladies, in case your reading this..ALL and I mean ALL men know when your "there" for the moment or just obliging your man. My wife went on and explained to the counselor that she could not understand why I was complaining when we have been having sex every weekend for the past year. Now, although this is true, honestly the sex has been pretty bad and there is a simple reason...she is not into it. I mean, she will get aroused, have an orgasm( she never had a problem with that) but mentally it sucks. Her rolling over and doing the act without me feeling that"desire" has had all sorts of ancillary effects...I have a hard time keeping it up, being too fast etc..that of course is playing havoc on my ego etc..so we are now in the midst of a test I proposed to my wife. I cant believe I did this, and the counselor went with it. The counselor asked my wife.."why do you feel a lack of desire" my wife explained" because my husband gets angry when I dont perform, and it feels like thats all he wants"...hearing this I jump in. I said " I dont believe that for a second" and I'll prove my theory. I went on.." For one month, I will not bring up, initiate, or hint anything sexually, I promise to not get upset or show anomosity to my wife if we dont fool around" ..the counselor said " what will this show ?" I said " It will show that even if I back off and dont put any pressure or emphasis on sex, it wont change my wifes desire one bit!" my wife was shocked and I think I know why. Now if all goes as planned, she may have to confront an issue(s) which she wouldnt bring up before. I eliminated the one and only reason she has ever said has diminished her desire and thats pressure from me. On the flip side, this may have put even more pressure on her to put her best "game face on" its so foolish really.

 

So, does counseling help? Time will tell. My concern now is me. Im not into head games and truth be told, this is becoming more work than fun. I am a loyal and devoted family man to the "EXTREME". Its so odd how when we are young its all about sex..guys would care less if a girl was into it or not. Now at my age, the emotional aspect is more key in every way. I love my wife soooo much and I have spent countless nights in tears without her knowing, wondering why my own wife doesnt seem to want me. Hang in there MWC!! Guys like us are a rare breed.. The majority of guys wouldnt stick around to work things like this out and woman know this, I promise you that. You read the stories on this site of what some of these ladies go through in there relationships and its easy to see our ladies are VERY lucky to have us. Keep posting.

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MWC was commenting on my post today and I wanted to see where he was coming from and I found this. Gage and MWC be careful, I WAS your wife 7 years ago before my emotional affair and before my husband's physical one. For women, sexual desire is completely emotional. My desire starting waning when my husband began being controling of me and the kids, ignored our feelings, and thinking his was the only opinion that counted. I lost respect for him, and desire went out the window. I soon found myself in love with someone else. TELL her you love her, ASK her to tell you anything, and really LISTEN when she does. It's all we want. Then the desire will come back on its own.

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MWC was commenting on my post today and I wanted to see where he was coming from and I found this. Gage and MWC be careful, I WAS your wife 7 years ago before my emotional affair and before my husband's physical one. For women, sexual desire is completely emotional. My desire starting waning when my husband began being controling of me and the kids, ignored our feelings, and thinking his was the only opinion that counted. I lost respect for him, and desire went out the window. I soon found myself in love with someone else. TELL her you love her, ASK her to tell you anything, and really LISTEN when she does. It's all we want. Then the desire will come back on its own.

 

Aw man, I was just starting to feel pretty good about my wife and I again...

 

Seriously, thanks for the input. Some replies are tough to hear but I always appreciate the advice. In reality, it's probably the posts that are the hardest for me to accept that are the most important to pay attention to. Sure, it feels great to have someone agree with my point of view and to make a connection with someone who is in a similar position as I am, but it is very useful to receive some constructive critisism that makes me think outside of my box.

 

I have been guilty of being a bit overbearing at times. I grew up with very controlling parents and for a long time that was the norm for me. Over time I have become quite aware of when I start acting that way and for quite a while now I have been making a significant effort to counter that behaivor. One of my bigger fears in life is that my kids will lack the same confidence that I lack from not being alowed to succeed and fail on my own accord, and not being allowed to go beyond my parents comfort level. Another big fear I have is of my relationship with my wife turning into my parents relationship - which worked for them but isn't what my wife or I want. I would classify their relationship as old fashioned with my dad being the one in charge and my mom being the "good wife" who relied on him to decide what was acceptable. I have discussed this issue (over-bearingness) with my wife several times, often with me being the person that brings it up, and she is very understanding and supportive of my goal to not fall into that trap. With that said, I do have to say that my wife is fortunately a very smart and strong person who seems to understand me and does not let me walk all over her.

 

I will also add that I have slowly come to the realization over the last few weeks that this issue is more about me and my emotions and my lack of confidence in myself, than it is about my relationship with my wife. I have been taking every action and behaivor of hers and turning it into something negative about me and our relationship. I am seeing the pressure this puts on her and have been trying to ease off a bit. It's a tough line to walk because in my heart I almost always want to be with her and want her approval, but in reality I need to understand that we each need our space and I need my confidence to come from within myself.

 

In the end, when I initially posted to this board I was glad to have the "companionship" that went along with it. It made me feel better to see that I wasn't alone in what I was feeling. While I still really do appreciate that compassion and empathy, I am starting to look at other people in similar situations to myself and see the parallels between them and myself. It is so much easier to identify self-defeating behaivor in others than it is in myself. (BTW, that statement isn't directed to anyone in particular) Rather than looking for an external reason of why I am feeling this way I have become more introspective and better at first looking within myself. I have no doubt that I will go through tough times in the future and I hope I will just get stronger and better at coping with them.

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Thats good input MWC. Often I find it easier to get angrey than simply listen to subtle hints from my wife. Much of it has to do with having a type "A" personality. The counselor we are seeing is helping for sure. She is bringing up issues of my wifes past...family, past relationships etc...and from that I am now able to see how much of her personality today is a reflection of past events. Likewise, I found this to be true of myself. I think what it all boils down to is having the desire to work through it. If thats not there, then its simply time to part ways. You are spot on in regards to what happened to you. Emotional availability to your wife is HUGE. If shes getting it from somewhere other than you, the sex aspect wil dwindle to nothing. When that happens men start looking and it becomes a nasty cycle. Good news is that we recognize that there is a situation and more importantly are more than willing to go the length to make things work. All the best.

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