Post

Would You Stay In A Marriage That Never Had Much Physical Chemistry?

My husband and I have been together for 17 years. We have never had very good physical chemistry (he was attracted to me, but i wasn't to him), but we married because we were compatible in every other way. But from the first year, I knew things were lacking in the bedroom and so did he. He used to point out that I seemed to have no problem with sex with my ex boyfriends, but when it came to him, something wasn't quite right.

Yet...four years later, we still got married because we figured, "it's just a small part of our lives."

Well, over the course of our 17 years together, this lack of chemistry has become a struggle to keep the sex alive in the bedroom. I've always tried to find ways to get out of having sex. And he became increasingly frustrated with me, blocking his advances and such. And he would complain that I rarely initiated sex. We have never had birthday sex or make-up sex (though we've had plenty of fights).

We've tried spicing things up by using toys, role playing, ****, etc. But while those got things going for a little bit, the energy and passion that one is supposed to get from their mate were lacking.

We also developed a lot of walls which we managed to break down after weeks of counseling. So now we're back to being friends again, and maintaining a healthy, open communication. I'm calm again and so is he. We've reached a happy place in our relationship.

But we've stopped having sex because the pressure of the whole thing became too much...i.e. him wanting it, me not feeling the passion. I've always had problems connecting with him physically from day one...over all this time, it's not gotten any better.

But as I have been telling my therapist from the beginning, I have doubts that I can conjure up chemistry when there was so little of it to begin with. When I was 20 something, I didn't know better. Now that I'm 40, I know what it feels like to have gone without much passion in the bedroom...and therefore a lack of spiritual and emotional connection...for 17 years. And despite how we're now in a functional relationship, it's more of a friendship and co-parenting set-up rather than a loving, passionate marriage. And the kids will grow up in one of those households where mom and dad aren't affectionate towards one another and will think that's the way it's supposed to be.

I've seen those couples who have that connection...I wish I had that. I think my husband, who is a loving and all around good person, and I deserve that. But I'm still on the fence about it...neither of us know if we could stand a sexless/passionless marriage. I suspect it will only lead to more pain (infidelity, regret, resentment) in the future.

woohoo2 woohoo2 36-40, F 7 Responses Nov 21, 2009

Your Response

Cancel

Lostbutnotalone: what I found with passionless marriages is that it can be ignored and almost justified in someone's head for a certain amount of time, before it eventually makes a marriage implode. Little by little, the lack of physical chemistry eats away at the delicate emotional fabric of the marriage, weakening what is already a tough task to begin with (making a marriage work).



Physical chemistry can't be conjured up where there was none to begin with. So all the counseling in the world can't make that better, if indeed that is the only thing that's causing it. That said, be sure that there aren't some deep seated issues that are impeding on trust and intimacy in your marriage. A good counselor will be able to help you uncover them.



Some people poo poo the sex thing as not a reason to leave a marriage. But in my mind, it's not that simple. Though it's true that in a mature relationship, you're not craving like a ravenous madman like you did in the beginning of a relationship, still...you want to at least feel loved by and connected to your mate in a way no simple friend could be with you. This is made possible by the only that separates a romantic relationship from a platonic one...physical attraction. Even when you do it less later in life, sex and intimacy are still very important...touch, smell and physical comfort of your mate's presence all make your relationship strong and grow deeper in connection.



I'm pretty clear on this topic now, two years later after I first posted, that this is true. I left my marriage for other reasons not stated here that eroded my trust, but I think that if we were more intimately connected, we would still be together, regardless of what has happened in the past.



These days, I'm with a man who connects with me on all levels of chemistry...physical, emotional and mental. NOW I know what it means to love another adult wholly and with every fiber of my being. There is trust and there is a sense of security that comes with the right connection, to the point where I feel like we can get through anything.



I'm not a proponent of divorce by any means. But unhappy marriages create a lot of damage on their own to the people involved and the children. Try to think with your heart and not your ego and do your best to get to the bottom of the situation. Is it that you are compatible, but that you have issues to settle? Or is it that you two just are incompatible, not connecting and affecting everything and everyone around you with your bad energy? You do owe it to yourself and the marriage to do the hard work to find out the facts, so that you can patch up the marriage or if you end up splitting, that you don't repeat your mistakes.



Good luck, everyone! We all deserve happiness. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

Although it's good to know that I'm not alone, I still don't know if there's a right answer to my predicament. I, too, have been married for 16+ years and after years lacking passion and a “regular” sex life, we went to a counselor and things got "better". I was feeling shut out (again) recently and my wife reiterated that she has never felt any passion toward me and that for her, there was NEVER any chemistry. I love her, and she loves me and has made it clear to me that she only married me because I was good looking, the greatest guy she knew and that I'd make a perfect husband and father, but she was willing to overlook the lack of passion for a good family life. I wish that I was given the same option to make that choice as I now have to live everyday knowing that I can't arouse my wife and there are many men in her life who have. I don't know if I can continue in a passionless marriage where every time we are intimate, I feel as if I'm only getting pity sex, even though she admits that I am very attentive and that she enjoys and is always satisfied when we do have sex(infrequently). I don’t get it and I’m going f*&%#ing crazy; she loves me, says that I’m a fantastic man and a great husband, she enjoys having sex with me but she’s not physically attracted to me, PLEASE, SOMEBODY HELP ME WITH THIS!

Although it's good to know that I'm not alone, I still don't know if there's a right answer to my predicament. I, too, have been married for 16+ years and after years lacking passion and a “regular” sex life, we went to a counselor and things got "better". I was feeling shut out (again) recently and my wife reiterated that she has never felt any passion toward me and that for her, there was NEVER any chemistry. I love her, and she loves me and has made it clear to me that she only married me because I was good looking, the greatest guy she knew and that I'd make a perfect husband and father, but she was willing to overlook the lack of passion for a good family life. I wish that I was given the same option to make that choice as I now have to live everyday knowing that I can't arouse my wife and there are many men in her life who have. I don't know if I can continue in a passionless marriage where every time we are intimate, I feel as if I'm only getting pity sex, even though she admits that I am very attentive and that she enjoys and is always satisfied when we do have sex(infrequently). I don’t get it and I’m going f*&%#ing crazy; she loves me, says that I’m a fantastic man and a great husband, she enjoys having sex with me but she’s not physically attracted to me, PLEASE, SOMEBODY HELP ME WITH THIS!

I have very similar story... I hang in there because honestly he is the best man I have ever known, he is an awesome father to our young children and a trusted and loyal friend... also, I have had boy friends that I felt that passion for and it did subside after awhile.... so who knows?



I am a Christian woman and I feel that marriage is very sacred and I signed up for it knowing that I did not have chemistry with him... though I do find him attractive.... it's so weird.... I don't get it.... I have fought with my feelings over it for 12 years... I give it to God daily.... but I still cringe when he kisses me or initiates sex...... I used to drink too much just to be able to have some sort of relaxation about it all...



I don't know what will become of us..... but I trust him and I love him..... and I do not want to hurt my kids... plus, who's to say I would find someone who fet those other needs? and the ones he does... I think I have to continue to pray and turn it over to God and hope in miracles.... God is supposed to fill us up anyway, right? we aren't supposed to look to each other for that... help ... :)

Hi edwm: Good for you! Thanks for your comment!

Thank you for sharing. I recently reconnected with an old friend, who has always made his feeling for me known. I thought I'd see if I could give us a try, but like you I feel no chemistry. My dilemmna came because I know he is a good man, the kind of man women say they want and Ididn't want to lose out. But I'm just not feeling it. I was thinking I could grow to love him, but know I see that will not happen and only lead to both of us being unhappy. Thanks again.

I'm sorry to hear about your situation. I'm in a relatively new relationship... going on a year and a half. Started out having a passionate spiritual connection in the bedroom. But somethings changed... It's like we don't desire each other in that way anymore. I thought maybe it was because her mother passed away and she just didn't want to be touched... she's grown cold and numb. I get no real emotion or passion from her.... I know we both can be that way.. I just don't think we are able to bring that side out of each other anymore. It's really no way to live. But like you and your husband.... we are compatible in other areas of our relationship.. But the communication has suffered greatly... I don't even feel like we are friends...we can't talk anymore. I wanted so much for it to work.... but I think there is a point where you have to let go.... even if you don't want to. Some things will just never change. Sounds like you and your husband have tried nearly everything. If you both feel you can't go on in a sexless, passionate-less marriage, and if there isn't enough other things that balance it out and keep you together.. You have to do what's best to end the suffering... Your right it's only going to cause you both pain.



Unless you BOTH are comfortable enough with an open marriage? That could be an answer... I don't condone cheating... I think you both have to look at this boldly and say "I'm not going to deprive myself of sex and feeling wanted..." If you can be honest with each other and your wants and desires... You could possibly save your marriage... Good Luck, I know it's easier said than done.