There Are No Easy Answers....

Hello, I have been married for 25 years to a very kind man and a good father. I knew when we married that our sex drives were...well...not exactly compatible...his is very low, mine is very high....but I really did think that there were so many other things we had in common, and thought sex was less important than so many other aspects of a relationship...and I still believe that. However,when there are issues in the bedroom, it permeates the entire marriage, inevitably. Unless both partners are "okay" about no sex, there begins a tension that is so uncomfortable and begins to erode other areas. I have tried over the years to talk to him about it, encourage him gently to seek help--together or separately....and zillions of other things....and nothing happens, nothing changes...We have not had sexual relations since my second son was conceived...and he just turned 12. I went to counseling, finally, because I was feeling crazy...and found out that I am doing okay and that unless he wants to change or seek counseling or help or advice...nothing is going to change. I see this situation as having only three solutions...divorce, an affair, or just gritting my teeth and putting up with no passion or intimacy or sex for the rest of my life. I would love to hear from others....realizing that our individual situations vary of course...but would love to know how you cope...or not.
lucile lucile
51-55, F
24 Responses Aug 12, 2007

Since he is the one who shut the door on sex even though he knew you wanted a sex life, it seems fair to me that he should agree that it would be fine if you outsourced. If he loves you, he would not want you to be deprived of something that normally would be provided by your husband, but that he's not willing to do. If he balks at this idea and also is not interested in satisfying your needs himself, he is not the kind, loving man whom you think he is, and you might want to think over whether it's time to divorce.

lucile, I agree with you about the 3 options.......I don't want a divorce.....an affair is never a good thing and I hate the thought of never having passion or intimacy again. I'm not sure how well I am coping because I think about living in a sexless marriage A LOT. I hate bringing it up because it does no good and he just gets defensive about it.

Lucile what's your update?

Wow you story is somewant close to mine. affair is not the answer I had one 14 years ago.I been married for 17 years. I feel your pain in your story. If he is not going to change you have to think of yourself NOW.I am cheering for you and pray things work out . evon19

It has probably been awhile since you posted this story and I don't know if any resolution has been made in your situation. But to answer your question about how others handled this...well...I coped. And I would probably still be coping if my husband hadn't made the decision to seperate. Because I loved him and was in love with him. But you are so right...it permeates your entire relationship, and sometimes you can barely like each other. Or you get so angry about the issue that anger permeates other areas of your life with him. But I was coping for 9 years...and I was miserable for most of those. It is so hard...and I am so very sorry.

I'm the frustrated guy in this story. Menopause is a life changing deal for most women. Husbands/ significant others need to be sensitive to the hormonal changes a woman's body experiences but my gosh, I really didn't get married to be celibate. Even in the event the woman's plumbing doesn't work any more, there should be consideration for the partner's needs as well. Our lack of sexual intimacy has led to a lack of intimacy PERIOD. After almost 4-years of no sex, I have resorted to ************ which with some creativity, can take the edge off. Nothng however will ever replace the touch of my woman!

I feel for you ,Iam highly sexed ,but my wife of 30 yrs has lost all interest,so i am in the same position,perhaps we could talk?

The last three posters to this group could be channeling me and my married life.... cue the Twilight Zone theme.

The only thing I have to say is that it is just as bad when it is reversed. I have not have intercourse with my wife for over 3 1/2 years and it is killing me. If I beg enough, there will be a one sided intimacy. The problem is that sex is supposed to be mutual, with both partners giving and receiving pleasure and human touch. I really am to the point of finding a woman in a similiar situation and having a mutually fulfilling sex life. I think it is such an integral part of a healthy marriage.

The only thing I have to say is that it is just as bad when it is reversed. I have not have intercourse with my wife for over 3 1/2 years and it is killing me. If I beg enough, there will be a one sided intimacy. The problem is that sex is supposed to be mutual, with both partners giving and receiving pleasure and human touch. I really am to the point of finding a woman in a similiar situation and having a mutually fulfilling sex life. I think it is such an integral part of a healthy marriage.

Only in My Dreams, your husband is so similar to mine, it seems. My husband is unbelievably handsome. He is a gorgeous half Italian, half Irish beautiful man who is constantly hit on by colleagues, students, fellow classmates. Sometimes I just want to say to them..."lust all you want ladies. But this guy is so asexual it would leave you dry and untouched". Sometimes I feel so resentful because I know that people talk behind ou backs and speculate about our sex life, coming up with stories of how good it must be. (I am a Mediterranean mix, so together we look pretty unique and handsome). I just wish I could shout out to the world "NO! He hates sex, never wants it, never gives it, and when he does, it is terrible". Sometimes he makes sexual jokes that are witty in public and it kills me inside because it leads people on that he is sexual. I just want to be like "you have no right to let people believe that you fulfill me sexually". And writing and thinking all this kills me inside because we do love each other. But so much of my love for him is turning into resentment over this issue. <br />
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You write: "If thee were ever a man that would look the part of the verile womanizer, it is my husband". That is my husband exactly! My boyfriend before my husband was not handsome at all. He was actually kind of homely, but we were so attracted sexually. he was fantastic in bed. He ever would have known...<br />
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It is frustrating. Hang in there. I totally feel your pain.

This site is such a comfort. Well...in some ways a comfort...but in other ways it makes me sad that so many other women are going through this. Everything everyone has written has so mirrored my past three years. I have only been married for seven months, but the year and a half we were together before our marriage were pretty much sexless, also. My boyfriend before my husband was very sexual, just like me. We had a wonderful sex life...we made love at least once a day and it was always really good. When I met my now husband, I had to work really hard for him to make out with me. i just thought that maybe he was being a gentleman. As the months went on, everything was SO right between. Everything but the sexual issue. I would have to wait two, three, sometimes four months just for him to MAKE OUT with me...not even do anything further. I spent most nights crying and writing in my journal. It got so bad that I thought I should call off the engagement...but I just couldn't because everything is so perfect between us. So...we got married, and i love him more than anything...but i am just depressed all the time. i try EVERYTHING. i wear sexy clothes...he tells me my shirt is too low. i start kissing him gently all over his body, he gets disgusted and turns away. I try to make out with him in bed, he turns to his side and lifts the covers. We have talked about this problem so many times, he promises to see a doctor...he never does. Things never ever get better. I love him so much, and he loves me...but we are not sexually compatible and I don't believe we ever will be. I can't live in depression though. I can't live thinking that I'm unattractive and worthless...not worth even a French kiss. <br />
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I feel like it's a dark cloud hovering over our entire relationship.

You are far from alone with this problem. I am married 22 years. I know I need some answers too now. It is no way live a happy life.

I haven't considered reaching out because in my business, issues are always settled in house and at the lowest level of management. Well, this isn't business is it? When my wife and I married we couldn't keep our hands off each other. Our love life was hotter than nine kinds of hell. Then came menopause. Nobody could have prepared me for this one. Now she doesn't sleep in my bed, avoids intimate contact of any kind and makes patronizing moves to improve the situation. What is most frustrating is, I still think she is a hottie and would be all over her with a crumb of encouragement! It's crazy that we spent those years worrying about contraception and now when she can't conceive, the water shuts off??? Mother nature sure has a twisted sense of humor. I have not a clue where to go from here. We took some pretty enornous vows in that little church in the midwest and I am a man of ethics. I'm also human and so miss a woman's touch! Pray for me.

sex drive. thats it! i have had this argument before with ppl who says its not true! have had many suggestions as how to improve my sex life, but the basic fact is my wife has a low sex drive, mine is very high. this is something u do not think about much when u first get married as usually u are both still learning, then when u find out, its 2 late.

I can so relate, I am in the SAME situation and now have two babies wondering if I made the WRONG choice. I had been hurt so badly by the guys I had great sex with that I married ol faithful who has been looming in the background all these years. I WANT to have an affair but can't even get out of the house to do it...not to mention the weight gain.<br />
I am SOOO depressed...

Hi Lucile<br />
I can relate to your story, I have the same problems, only in reverse, it's my wife that has gone off sex, but her's is due to her health, which I totally understand and cope with, even though, like yourself, it's frustrating when you have a large sex drive, as I personally always have done. I still love my wife very much, so divorce is out of the question. I decided on having an affair...no strings, just sex and was fortunate to get to know a woman, who was also in the same situation as you are, in need of sex, but her husband is not interested anymore. We've been seeing each other for 2 yrs now and have just began renting a small i bed flat, close to where we work, where we spend hour lunch hours having the most amazing sex every day. Neither of our partners know of our extra marital fun, so we carry on in our marriages as normal. I wish you luck with what ever you decide to do.

In response to KCfizzme -<br />
with respect, if our partners, who love us, don't even want to cuddle - I don't think ramping up the sexual pressure by brining in a third person would work. Problem is our partners don't have the libido - no desire for sex. And let me be clear, in my situation, and in many others I suspect - there really is no desire, including they/he doesn't ********** or even have erections in the morning, when we cuddle it never goes beyond the hug, etc. As an example: I tried suggesting to my hubby we watch ****, talked about toys and such - and nothing from my partner. Then as this issue becomes a bigger and bigger wedge in our relationships - to bring a third party into what is already a very tense and emotional issue I don't think would ever help.

It is so good to read a women perspective on this issue.<br />
my wife and I have been married for 18 years. She has zero sex drive. I am a hopeless romantic I strong believe in unconditional love, respect, and honesty. she and I have spoke a zillion times on the issue. she simply has no interest. so were does that leave me. it is much more of an issue then I ever thought it would be. If any of you ladies have any suggestions, comments, or ideas. Please I am open.

I am going crazy after 4 years, you are at 12 - wow. I guess I am at a place where I am thinking "can I really divorce because he won't 'do' me - and how shallow is that" - that said, a marriage is a marriage when there are Kids (that you have) and when there is intimacy (which neither of us have) -<br />
I was surprised, yet comfortaed to see how many others are coping with this, but I am curious also to hear from people who have 1) grin & bared it 2) divorced 3) fixed it. Frankly, I have not found any comments/stories about this situation getting better - have you?<br />
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Also - as I am new to this group, can you recommend other groups I should see?<br />
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Thanks

How do I cope...<br />
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I cope by reaching out and trying to connect with others who are in the same situation that I am in. 1) because they need the support, and 2) because they understand, and it doesn't seem as if people not in this situation can understand how horrible it is. I have even started a support group for people in this plight. The support group has been around for a few years, needless to say it is hard to get word out about this problem.<br />
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I also cope by keeping hope alive that I might someday experience a healthy sex life again.

Wow, I'm sooo grateful to have found this site. I'm not alone! So much of what you've written mirrors my own life. I've been married nearly seven years and the sex has never been frequent or good and has only gotten more infrequent the longer we're married. Initially, I had hope for the future and believed things would eventually get better. I've been crying for nearly seven years now and am forcing myself to face the fact that this is the best it will ever be. The problem is that we now fight constantly, over things big and small. Yes, we can come to resolutions regarding all the peripheral stuff, but the real issue behind every argument is my incredible sadness at my empty marriage. He thinks we have a great marriage - because he has absolutely no need for sex. He's told me this since the beginning - of course AFTER our wedding. I've been threatening divorce for probably three years now, but this has had no effect on him. Yes, I agree with you that there are lots of things that a man in this situation can do WITHOUT a penis, but I think they are simply incapable of thinking beyond their own needs, or lack thereof. I've suggested to my husband MANY TIMES that we could make those few times that we do have sex meaningful and enjoyable, but it's always the same things. It's really me making all the effort and him making none of the effort. At this point, when he does touch me, I feel NOTHING at all. I have to fantasize about other men most of the time. It's really sad, because I do love him, but I've given up. I've had to give up. By reading others' experiences in different forums, I realize that I am not alone in my despair. I realize that these types of relationships are extremely damaging to your psyche and in the end, you are left feeling unlovable, unattractive and pretty much worthless. I have also decided that I will not spend my life feeling this way and that it's time for me to move on (I have two kids, by the way). I've announced to my family that I intend to file in court on Tuesday, September 4th to begin what I know will be one of the most excruciatingly painful decisions I've ever had to make, but I have no choice anymore. I don't want to live my life as an angry, embittered woman. I want to smile again and feel confident that there's better things on the horizon. What you need to do is to decide if you can spend the rest of your life in the way you're living now. You need to decide if you're staying in your marriage due to fear (for all sorts of reasons), and if you are, you need to forge ahead, pick yourself up by the bootstraps and move on to better things. I've realized that I may always care about my husband, but I can't fix his problems and I certainly won't allow myself to be lost in his issues anymore. I deserve to life too. I wish you luck and I know what you're going through - I'm in hell too. The best of luck in whatever you ultimately choose.

I understand what you are going through, as I am going through it too.<br />
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Others that aren't in this situation don't understand and can't relate to it and aren't any help. <br />
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It is hell.

I just recently found this site and it has made me feel better that I am not the only one with this problem but also very sad that there are so many of us!!! Like you my husband is a great guy, we are best friends, enjoy the same things, have a great family. We were college sweethearts..had great sex, lots of sex!! But we broke up and went our seperate ways. 30 years later we ran into each other and it was love at first site for me. Sex was great but he did have some E.D. issues but had viagra. Once a week was ok with me...then it went to once every 2 weeks..then once a month...we got married and have been married for the last 3 years. We now have sex ..well basically never. He says he just has NO desire for sex. The viagra doesn't even work. I understand he has a medical problem..it just doesn't work, but I don't understand why he doesn't want to touch me, there are things he could do that do not require a penis! He just doesn't get it...we talk, I cry, he says he'll try, then nothing changes. As soon as I drop the subject so does he. I know it must be very hard for a man to accept he is impotant but he avoids all intimate contact because of it. He tells me he loves me, holds my hand, kisses me hello and goodby, calls me often to just say hi, cooks, cleans (sort-of), is a good guy! But nothing passionate or romantic. I feel like a rat for wanting more..I feel so very lonely most of the time, I want to lay in bed and just snuggle or just make out!! I miss the physical contact with him. I think of leaving but I would miss him and our life but this is the only life I have and I get tired of crying!! We're planning a cruise this fall and I really don't even want to go...to me a vacation is a romantic getaway and I know there will be nothing romantic about it. It will be fun but.....I feel like I am missing out on life. I just go through the motions of living. I need romance and passion and touch. I wish I could tell you how I cope.....but I don't know. I just have to not think about it and just consider us to be best friends. But if things don't change and I don't see that happening, I know I can't spend the rest of my life like this. SOmetimes I wish I would just loose my sexual desires..it would make things soooooooo much easier. I have read thru many of the others stories on here and there are people that have gone thru this for 20-30 years, many with spouses that don't even sound very nice....I just don't understand. Love is such a complex thing!! All I can say is your not alone....take care.