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.