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wife says she isnt physically or sexually attracted to me


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Hello all, I stumbled onto this site when searching Google for “wife isn’t sexually attracted to me...” I had to register to put my situation out there and see what advice any of you may have.

 

I am 35, and she just turned 32. Our situation is unique. Started dating when she was 15 (1996), she cheated on my while dating a few times, like prior to her graduating high school, but never after that or when married. We got married in 2001 and I moved us to North Dakota since I had just got out of Basic Training for the USAF and this was my first duty station. It was 18 hours from home and she was only 19 at the time. We had a girl in 2002, and we separated at the end 2004 because I was always overseas since the war broke out. I didn’t blame her, but could not do anything but sign the papers. We didn’t know it, but she was pregnant with my son at the time, and he was born in Aug 2005, and then we officially were divorced. Between 2005 and 2007, a guy got her pregnant and she had a son in January of 2007. He didn’t want anything to do with the kid so needless to say they parted ways quickly after he was born. I came home during the summer of 2007 after my 6 year enlistment was up because I wanted to be a Dad. I have a big heart and would include this baby because I knew my kids would not understand why he was treated differently, and honestly, I didn’t want them to experience that. As time went on, we fell back in love, and I bought a house for all of us. We lived together for a few years and re-married in November of 2011. We both wanted to be sure it would work. I am now in the process of adopting the littlest boy who will be 6 years old this January. So, there is our brief history in a nut shell..so now for the reason for my Google search...

 

When we first got back together, sex was almost daily. But now, not so much, maybe once a month if I am lucky. Of course, we had our ups and downs. I got depressed and got help, but during that time, I became addicted to an internet game which shall remain nameless. I would spend a lot of time on this game, but it never interfered with the important aspects of life, such as kids games, school plays, holidays, etc. In turn, she went out on the weekends with my sister and started drinking a little more. (Usually she only drank beer on weekends, but now it was daily) It did however affect my responsibilities around the house. I simply did not help her out hardly at all. Even during this time, we had sex at least twice a month or more. She never really wanted to, but did so to appease me. The last week of October 2012, I realized that what I was doing was going to cause me to lose my family. So I manned up, told her I realized that I wasn’t pulling my weight and I wanted to change that. I gave up the game cold turkey and started helping her around the house. I did not expect the respect to come from her immediately. I expected her to wonder “when is he going to go back to sitting his ass in front of the computer again...” I can confidently say that I pull my weight and then some, and she would agree.

 

It has now been a few months since my 180 degree change and things are soooo much better. Our relationship is better, the relationship I have with my kids is better, I am more social, I have taken my wife out several times. The thing I noticed is that I have an intense need for intimacy from her. So I approach her after the kids were in bed one night and laid my feelings out for her. Now she is not a big talker of her feelings, I mean, she absolutely does not talk about them hardly at all. Most times, I have to get her mad so that I know how she feels about something. She also hates to talk about sex. She has endometriosis, but it didn’t affect her very much, and painful sex hadn’t been a part of our relationship except when she was like 17. She had a laparoscopy and that seem to do the trick then. She may need it again, but I felt that it was necessary to disclose this medical info about her. I told her that I would like to be more intimate with her, but that I understood that the emotional disconnect would have to be rebuilt for her to “want” that too. I explained that I was in no hurry for sex, because I wanted us to both want it, and enjoy it, instead of this “hurry up lick here, now get on top and get yours and let’s get it done...” The two times we have had sex since my switch were great, I can make her orgasm every time clitorally no matter how much she drinks, but that was November 9th, and November 30th. The thing for me is that we have not had sober sex since we got back together in 2007. (I’m mostly always am sober, but she never is) Most of my efforts at intimacy all ended with rejection. I was not discouraged because I understood that I likely created this monster and I was going to have to turn it around. So I started paying more attention to what she was doing to see what I could do, and adjust my timing or you know, whatever I could change without creating a negative emotion from her.

 

I began to notice that she never put her Iphone down. I thought the worst at first, maybe she was cheating. She always left her phone laying out while she was doing chores, or taking a shower, and although I know it may be wrong, I went through her call log and messages, but found nothing. I chalked it up to her compensating the time that I should have been having with her phone. She is always on facebook, pintrest, or playing games from facebook. (I mean, always, still to this very day) Anyway, one night I waited until the kids were in bed and we sat down and I asked her about the intimacy and the rejection. I told her that I felt like she wasn’t physically or sexually attracted to me and her response was (and I quote) “no I am not, but I also am not physically or sexually attracted to anyone..” I basically got upset because I knew this was bulls**t. I followed up with her favorite baseball player Matt Holiday, or Brad Pitt, and I explained the comments that I had heard her say regarding their looks, therefore her statement was false. She just shrugged her shoulders. I began to ask her about what turns her on, and she said “I don’t know.” I raised my eyebrows and asked the question again, and she gave the same response. I gave up, but I do NOT believe that s**t at all. I am more concerned with the not being physically or sexually attracted to me part, but am really upset that she will not tell me what does it for her.

 

I myself am 5’9” and 190lbs, down from 203lbs before my 180 degree switch. I have a slight beer gut and man boobs from sitting on my ass all day at work, then sitting on my ass at home in front of the computer playing the game and drinking dark beer. I have been losing weight steadily though, I have reduced my drinking to maybe every two or three days. She is very attractive 5’8” tall and was 163lbs and after my switch she started Thinogenics and is now down to 151lbs, and still losing too. She usually keeps her hair short, but admitted to me that she knows that I like it long so she hasn’t went and got a haircut for that reason. This made me feel good. I just cannot get off of that physical/sexually attractive thing though. I told her that I would like sex at least once per week and she acted like it was the end of the world and even said that she could care less if she never had sex again. Now, she is on some hormone Norethindrone that keeps her period away, but it should increase her sex drive (according to her gyno), but it doesn’t. She smokes a pack of cigs a day and has about 4-5 beers everyday and around 8-10 on weekend nights. This depends on the day she has had and how late my sister stays each night. (my sister was engaged, guy had a drinking problem, she kicked his ass out, now she is at my house drinking every night too)

 

I have talked with her regarding her smoking and drinking, but she goes on the defensive and says things like “just something else that’s wrong with ME huh?” I have tried so hard to make her understand that I care about her health, but that I also care about her image she portrays to our kids, but she continues with the previous statement. She told me that she was tired of hearing every week what I think is “wrong” with her or what she isn’t doing enough of (intimacy). Only recently I put my foot down and demanded that when we are talking about important parts of our lives, like relationship, or kids, that she put her Iphone down. She would be looking around, texting, writing a post or pinning even while we were talking about our sex life or whatever it may have been. I got furious and told her that was bulls**t and even though I haven’t been perfect, I do not deserve that kind of treatment. I explained to her that I was trying to get our life back to the good and it was a slap in the face to be talking to her and her not even so much as looking up at me.

 

If its relevant, she is a 1st and 2nd grade school teacher at a private school ($25k), and I am in maintenance at a factory ($65k) so we don’t make a lot, but we have everything we want, and her parents are wealthy.

 

So, I don’t know what else could be relevant but I would appreciate any comments or suggestions no matter how bad they may be.....

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Your wife is an alcoholic. I would ask her to either enter treatment or you'll divorce her. If she gets sober, then worry about this, but she'll be a completely different person by that time, so it's completely possible this won't be a problem with the sober her. Can't believe she's taking care of kids. Scary.

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I told her as nicely as I could that I thought she was a functioning alcoholic, to which she said no way and shrugged it off.... I am increasingly starting to care less about pissing her off and more about expressing my feelings even if I know it will piss her off. she doesnt get drunk everyday, I may even say, not even buzzed everyday, but yes I know there is an issue there.

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I told her as nicely as I could that I thought she was a functioning alcoholic, to which she said no way and shrugged it off.... I am increasingly starting to care less about pissing her off and more about expressing my feelings even if I know it will piss her off. she doesnt get drunk everyday, I may even say, not even buzzed everyday, but yes I know there is an issue there.

 

But she drinks 4-5 beers every day and 8-10 each night on the weekend? That's an alcoholic. If she stopped cold turkey, she'd experience physical withdrawal. Only a matter of time until things get worse. Your kids will be in danger. She shouldn't be left alone with them. Time to stop being nice for your kids sake.

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Agree that your wife is drinking too much. Have you done much research on alcoholism? It sounds like she got into the alcohol while hanging with your sister when you were playing video games - if this is correct, then pulling her away slowly from your sister might help. You said it's only been several months since you gave up the video games and started helping around the house, but sometimes it takes couples awhile to recalibrate.

 

When did the disinterest in sex begin with your wife? What do you think caused it? Your post implies that she does not communicate with you about what she's thinking or how she's feeling - maybe she lost sexual interest awhile ago but didn't say anything to you because that's not her style.

 

Also, her lack of communication skills worries me. I believe that if you can't tell each other what pisses you off, scares you, and hurts your feelings, it's hard to have a healthy marriage.

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I would say the disinterest came about before I started the video game. I think that he inability to properly manage stress is what caused it. She deals with 7-8 year olds daily, then comes home to our bunch that is 5, 7, and 10. So it was quite a bit for her. Talking about the way she feels in a peaceful manner is not her style, I have to pry. And yes it worries me, but part of me thinks that she does this so that I wont see her as a weak woman. It definitely isnt the way to be.

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More than four drinks every day, while looking after kids...I'd say that is a slippery slope. Are those drinks back to back? I can'[t have more than two before feeling the effects, and I weigh a lot more than your wife.

 

I would say that she cracks open her first beer at 5:30-6pm unless something is going on like a basketball game, or our daughter needs to go to dance. And no, not back to back she will spread those beers from this time to roughly 10:30-11pm. I say that because my sister is hanging out at our house because she has no where else to go. And my sister has been drinking daily for years. I directy contribute my wife's increase in alcoholic drinks to my sister. But, she is a big girl and can decide to slow it down or stop it. I have pondered speaking to my sister about this, I just do not want to ruin two relationships, does that make sense?

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I would say that she cracks open her first beer at 5:30-6pm unless something is going on like a basketball game, or our daughter needs to go to dance. And no, not back to back she will spread those beers from this time to roughly 10:30-11pm. I say that because my sister is hanging out at our house because she has no where else to go. And my sister has been drinking daily for years. I directy contribute my wife's increase in alcoholic drinks to my sister. But, she is a big girl and can decide to slow it down or stop it. I have pondered speaking to my sister about this, I just do not want to ruin two relationships, does that make sense?

 

It makes sense from the perspective that you don't understand how to handle loved ones with alcoholism. They are ruining their relationships, not you. You are enabling their behavior and contributing to their demise by allowing this to go on in your house.

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It makes sense from the perspective that you don't understand how to handle loved ones with alcoholism. They are ruining their relationships, not you. You are enabling their behavior and contributing to their demise by allowing this to go on in your house.

 

I can see that now, and how does one go about resolving this? I do not feel like an ultimatum is the correct way to initiate this sort of conversation though. And when I do actually ease into this conversation, she will become defensive and pawn my intentions off on "something else that I dont like about her.." or "something else I want her to change about her..." or "something else that is wrong with her.." She simply will not see this as my approach to remedy a potentially serious situation impacting me and the kids.

 

I do watch after the kids when I get home. She no longer goes anywhere with my sister, not even to the liquor store. She is aware that when my sister is at our house unloading her drama about her ex fiance doin this and that, that my wife will drink more. But, the fact remains that my wife doesn't think it is a problem.

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With so much dysfunction, it’s hard to know where to start. If something doesn't change, I would advise you to expect the absolute worst!

 

She’s obviously very unhappy and your "same old" isn’t working.

If you want to save the marriage you must stop treating her like a child. This means throwing all your old approaches into the waste can.

 

You have to set her free...

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An ultimatum is the ONLY way. Sure, ultimatums have a bad name, particularly in relationships, but this is different. If you don't believe me, and I don't blame you if you have no experience with addicts, do some research on your own or go to an al-anon meeting. Addicts are rabidly defensive, as you're observing. And usually in denial.

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An ultimatum is the ONLY way. Sure, ultimatums have a bad name, particularly in relationships, but this is different. If you don't believe me, and I don't blame you if you have no experience with addicts, do some research on your own or go to an al-anon meeting. Addicts are rabidly defensive, as you're observing. And usually in denial.

 

I have no experience with this sort of thing. My parents dont drink, neither do hers. Her two sisters do not drink much at all. I have always thought that my sister has had a drinking problem. I just didnt realize how bad it was until she booted her fiance out of her house for having a drinking problem. I guess the fact that he was hiding the hard liquor from her, and coming home completely hammered unable to talk is her idea of a problem.

 

I do not want to give up on my wife, so I suppose the next best thing to do is talk to my sister and demand that she no longer bring beer to my house and make sure she leaves by 9:30pm everynight. I suppose I will no longer stop by the liquor store on my way home from work either.

 

Damn, I didn't realize that this could be the root of our sexual problems.

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An ultimatum can come in many forms. I personally think the "in your face" type is weak and a waste of time. She knows she has to be part of it for it to work.

 

Consider soft/non-binding/hidden ultimatums:

You – Hi honey how was you day?

Wife - Okay, where were you? You're late!

You – Oh, I had things to do.

Wife – Such as?

You – It’s okay, you don’t want to know.

Wife – Yes I do?

You – Well I was talking to my attorney/looking for a kid friendly apartment/talking to my Mom. Etc.

Wife – Huh?

You – Good night dear…

 

Make sure you looked for an apartment/attorney or talked to your Mom!

 

The ball is now in her court. If she can’t understand it… too bad. She’s not a kid.

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An ultimatum can come in many forms. I personally think the "in your face" type is weak and a waste of time. She knows she has to be part of it for it to work.

 

Consider soft/non-binding/hidden ultimatums:

You – Hi honey how was you day?

Wife - Okay, where were you? You're late!

You – Oh, I had things to do.

Wife – Such as?

You – It’s okay, you don’t want to know.

Wife – Yes I do?

You – Well I was talking to my attorney/looking for a kid friendly apartment/talking to my Mom. Etc.

Wife – Huh?

You – Good night dear…

 

Make sure you looked for an apartment/attorney or talked to your Mom!

 

The ball is now in her court. If she can’t understand it… too bad. She’s not a kid.

 

That's a much better approach than what I was thinking. And I will keep this in mind for sure, I really hope it doesn't come down to this, but nevertheless, thank you for your advice, all of you.

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I do not want to give up on my wife, so I suppose the next best thing to do is talk to my sister and demand that she no longer bring beer to my house and make sure she leaves by 9:30pm everynight. I suppose I will no longer stop by the liquor store on my way home from work either.

 

Damn, I didn't realize that this could be the root of our sexual problems.

 

I'm actually more worried about your kids, watching them drink every night and all weekend. My late husband drank himself to death, and because of his drinking, our sex life was non-existamt for the last year he was alive. He used to drink a few beers every night until it got out of hand.

 

It's important for the kids to know that this ISN'T normal or acceptable.

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That's a much better approach than what I was thinking. And I will keep this in mind for sure, I really hope it doesn't come down to this, but nevertheless, thank you for your advice, all of you.

 

I don't think this is a good idea at all. You want to stay married, right? You want her to get better, right? So you need to give her a chance. She needs to know you're giving her an opportunity to make some changes. You definitely have to be very clear about what will happen if she doesn't change, but if you follow this other approach, it's going to sound to her like you've already decided you're leaving her regardless of what she does. If her parents didn't/don't drink, she may not be aware how deep in it she is - just like you didn't. She'll need support from you, but the support is conditional on her going to rehab - you have to be firm and clear on that. Not the time to be passive aggressive.

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I'm curious, besides sex, how is the rest of your relationship?

 

It's actually not bad. After I made my change, she has been a lot better toward me and I know she loves me. We do things with our kids together, we laugh and have a good time. We make decisions together now, its just the intimacy that is lacking.

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I'm actually more worried about your kids, watching them drink every night and all weekend. My late husband drank himself to death, and because of his drinking, our sex life was non-existamt for the last year he was alive. He used to drink a few beers every night until it got out of hand.

 

It's important for the kids to know that this ISN'T normal or acceptable.

 

I know this too and I convey that to the kids. She doesnt like it when I do it in front of her, but she knows its the truth.

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Honestly I think you have much bigger problems than sexual intimacy in this relationship (Although her drinking may be a contributing factor)

 

Your wife is an alcoholic - no ifs ands or buts. She may be "functioning" as you put it (ie. not flat out drunk all the time) but a habit of 4-5 beers every night and 8-10 on weekends is definitely NOT normal, and WILL cause her huge amounts of health risks (such as problems with the liver, etc.)

 

I have lived with two "types" of alcoholic. My sister when she was drinking, was drunk almost all the time. Couldn't hold down a job, stole from us and/or manipulated others to get booze for her. My brother is a "functioning" alcoholic. Has two kids and drinks every single night to the point where he passes out. He is sober during the day (when he isn't sleeping.)

 

My sister eventually recognized she had a problem, sought help and got her life back on track. My brother has yet to do so because he believes (like many others seem to do) that if he is not drunk "all the time" he is not an alcoholic.

 

An alcoholic is ANYBODY who is dependent on alcohol. Period.

 

The fact that she CAN drink 4-5 drinks without getting any kind of buzz is an indication in and of itself that she has a problem. My brother is to the point where he can drink an entire case now before it really starts to hit him.

 

This is behavior that you NEED to deal with. You cannot ignore it because you have children. They are going to grow up with the impression that this behavior is normal. They could develop alcohol dependencies as well.

 

I think there is a difference between a condition and an ultimatum. An ultimatum is where you tell someone "do this, or else". A condition is when you tell them what YOU are willing to do for a person, but set boundaries around it.

 

I think you need to sit down with your wife (preferably at a time when you are both alone/away from the kids), take the Iphone from her so she HAS to pay attention (and her lack of doing so could be because deep down she knows what you are saying has merit) and talk to her without blame, but with honesty. Tell her you are worried about her health and hte fact that she refuses to admit she has a problem. Back yourself up by facts/statistics/research if you have to (including numbers for AA and Al-Anon)

 

Tell her you WANT to work on your relationship, but will only do so under the following conditions:

 

She recognizes/admits her problem and seeks help (genuinely)

 

I would give a time limit for her to do this - you decide what you think is fair, but let her know that if she is not willing to meet your conditions, you are prepared to leave. Don't back down on that - you will need to do so if necessary to show you are serious. Sometimes it's only after hitting rock bottom can people realize what they have lost and start to change. I hope it goes well for you. Good luck.

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Tvnerdgirl, thanks for your response. I do understand now that the effects of the alcohol is what is hindering our relationship. She does well at her job, she is active with her church functions, and we do a fundraiser for a childrens therapy center every year. She does not get drunk everynight, but at least one night on the weekend, she does. She used to want sex when she was drunk, and back then, since I rarely got it, I took it. But now, its like she is too drunk to do it. Her conditions on sex are that it must be night and the kids must be asleep. I have now turned my focus to dealing with her addiction first before proceeding with sober intimacy.

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  • 1 month later...

People love to blame alcohol for all the issues of the world. 3-4 beers a night does not make a poor communicator with no sexual interest. Otherwise the German population would be in trouble (and the Scots, and the Irish, and..).

 

Some people do in fact behave totally differently when they're under the influence of a moderate degree of alcohol, but the vast majority lose their inhibitions and expose an exaggerated version of their true feelings (sometimes in an unhelpful manner surrounded by b.s., but the fact is there's truth at the root of it).

 

So while it may be an issue that she would struggle to go a night without an alcoholic drink, if she is drunk and is not interested in sex, then I'd like to bet that when she's sober, she also isn't.

 

It would be good if she would hold off on the drinking until after the kids are in bed. Maybe on Friday and Saturday night they can see her drinking a beer. If they see her drink every day, they will drink every day. If they see her drinking in moderation, they will drink in moderation. If they never see any drinking, that'll be the first thing they do when they leave home.

 

Apologies I don't have any further advice

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