I Live In a Somewhat Sexless Marriage.

Quantity...A LOT! Quality,...not so much. I love mu hubby very much, but I have had some really nasty things done to me in the past. Not only has it led to my inability to completely enjoy sexual experiences, but it has made me have trust issues with people (especially when it comes to my relationships with men).

I can't offer any advice to you, as this is a devastating issue. I just wanted to let you know that sexual abuse really is a hard thing to get over (and even then, you never really get over it). Your wife really needs love and human touch...spend a lot of time with cuddling and hugs, and don't expect anything in return. Believe me, it helps.

missunderstood missunderstood
22-25, F
37 Responses Oct 28, 2006

Something snapped in me..
I was sexually abused too, had trust issue, etc etc, you name it.
But gosh I'm so sexual.

The other day, I didn't even ask, I just gave him the look, and he responded by saying
"Oh, come here. let's just snuggle." It was the first time he was so tender to me in a long time, but it would have been a torture to be held without being held, so I left the room without saying anything.

You have to understand, spending a lot of time cuddling and hugging without sex can be a torture.

It's not fair to expect a spouse to refrain forever from sex and only to cuddle due to their partner's history of sexual abuse. It is fair for the partner who was abused to do everything possible -- including therapy-- to get over their dislike of sex. An explanation for their behavior is not an excuse. A history of being sexually abused doesn't give one the right to not get help for their sexual dysfunction.

Quality is almost always due to lack of open and honest communication about how your sexuality works. Don't be afraid to talk about what you want and like during sex.

Why do you say the quality is lacking? What do you wish your hubby would do differently?

My wife doesn't have any interest in sex at all, so I'm totally jealous of anyone who says they have "alot."

Ditto :(

I'm so sry for wut you've been through missunderstood. Thank u for ur story. Although I haven't been through the hardship that you have, ur story will help others that have. Stay strong. Ur a survivor.

I am with a man who does not want to have sex with me and I often wonder if he was sexually abused. Are there any ways to tell if that is what it might be?


We are going to therapy Wed so maybe I will ask. I am afraid he will flip out because I asked.

Give the love you feel in your own time. Sex with my husband is awful. No matter how badly he treats me, he expects sex. He actually filed for divorce, when I declined to have sex with him. I'm done caring about his obsessive urges. They are not because of me so I no longer feel like complying. When you feel nurtured, the experience will feel complete and satisfying. Someone who gets you, will give you this feeling as long as you accept where you are in life. I think I learned to enjoy sex, when I knew it was also for me. I needed that circle of sharing positive energy. Just allow it.

you sound just like me, married 34 years my husband is very abusive in all ways
thinkable, i put up with it to keep a roof over my family's heads, every night he demanded " sex " its NOT making love, when he's been treating you like a dog all-day, it just feels like abuse, im NOT doing it anymore, kids have left home
ive mooved into the spare room 3 mths ago, and its GREAT.

I think having been sexually abused a lot as a kid may have made my wife's tepid-at-best sex drive feel safe...Plus I didn't want to admit that...yeah, I really wanted a reasonable amount of sex in my relationship. <br />
Sounds odd, right?<br />
It's because...well...when mom went to work night shift, my dad decided his "need" for sex was important enough to start having it with me. <br />
Admitting I actually need a modicum of sex to be at my optimum level of happy...that makes me...feel like I'm turning into him. Gross...it's bad enough that on really bad days I look in the mirror and think "UCK!" because I look soo freaking much like my chronic rapist.<br />
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But he (and the other two guys) should not get to ruin my body's responses for me. That was never theirs to mess with.

I too was sexually abused as a young child by an uncle when my mother was in the hospital due to a car accident. He lived with us and I remember a burning between my legs and crying out in pain. I was always sore there and remember my pink panties laying on the floor while he sat in the kitchen reading that paper. I hid as far as I could from him on the pantry floor. I did not have the words to tell anyone. I would have flashbacks when my ex forcefully inserted his fingers inside of me. The smells and sounds were suffocating and I begged him to stop but I was (always too sensitive). I told my ex what I remembered but it made no difference to him. <br />
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Therapy helped me understand this but my words never made a difference to my ex. He took and demanded and hurt me so many times. Never once did I feel a joy in that taking. Now life with my dear husband is tender and also very intense. He gives to me and I trust him and love him totally so sex is a joining and not a contest of domination. Peace.D

Your ex sounds abusive. I'm glad you are now with a much better person.

I never knew that so many men are abused as children. I just opened up to my counselor and told him about my abuse by my step sister. At the time I had not even shared that knowledge with my wife. However, even being abused as a child I now find that I have a high sex drive, but my wife and I rarely have sex. Usually about once every 18 months of so. I finally confided and told my wife and her reply was oh, so was I big deal, get over it. We have tried counseling but are 12 months our counselor came out and told my wife what she was doing was wrong and that she was going to loose me. She just replied, oh, no I won't because we are married and he won't leave me. The sad part is that she is right. We have 3 kids and I could not imagine putting them through that. Besides our marriage being pretty much sexless, almost everything else is pretty goodall now I have found that the longer I go without sex the easier it is. The one problem that is happening now is that I am beginning to wonder if my wife is having an affair. She now makes excess to avoid sex rather than just saying no, she goes to work 3 hours early and comes home 2 hours late and now she just took a new position where she is gone 7 to 14 days at a time. She insists she misses us and that this is just a step to help her move up in the company, but why then did she take a demotion and a pay cut to be gone most of the time?

I agree the abusers should be tortured! I was sexually abused by a man (I'm male) when I was 15 years old. He was a camp counselor and abused every boy in our cabin. I think I was old enough to get over most of the effects, however not all. I now have a very low libido when it comes to the act of sex, but I really love women a lot and I'm a romantic at heart. I can cuddle and kiss till the cows come home, but the sex act can be tricky. If I'm in the right mood and feeling physically fit it works, so I have to take advantage of that. Exercise is a big factor. Low libido can be semi-cured with a lot of exercise and better diet, and of course some herbs help too. Good luck with love all you that posted here.

Any time you are victimized by anyone, your loss of control to the other person will affect you for the rest of your life. Even as very young children, they feel responsible for having been abused. Many people become very controlling because they have a need to never give up control of themselves to anyone again. It's a trust issue of enormous proportion. If a person becomes promiscious, they become that way because they want to show the world, they are in control and many women learn to manipulate by using sex. <br />
After getting married, many people think they can control their way into a long, lasting, and happy & healthy relationship. They might be able to maintain this status quo for awhile, but eventually the relationship falls apart mainly due to too many external factors that are "uncontrollable". Like everything in nature, stress can make us stronger but too much stress for long periods of time leads to failure. No on likes to feel like they have failed and this becomes a vicious circle starting when a poor helpless child is 1st abused.<br />
This whole subject just brings out the warrior in me and I REALLY think abusers should be taken out & tortured to death. I am sorry I have no forgiveness for evil.

I was not abused, but I have discovered a lot over past years, having had friends who were abused, a sister in law that was abused, and a lover who was abused. Abuse - emotional, physical and sexual, have a broad range of possible impacts. Some people become hyper-sexual, some can't bare to be touched. Many are abused when very young, and brain chemistry is changing from birth until after puberty, and it appears the possible impacts of abuse in children is different than abuse of someone who is grown, not to mention that it is easier to understand abuse when you are older.<br />
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I had a friend who is bi-polar. He had 2 brothers kill themselves, a gay brother, a sister who is a functional alcoholic, a sister who was into drugs and abusive relationships and sometimes women. The father was a sadist, who tortured his wife, until she ended up in a mental hospital. There, I am sure there was emotional, physical and sexual abuse.<br />
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Children who are sexually abused, are stimulated, and usually experience some pleasure, no matter how wrong the abuse is. Children are not supposed to be sexually stimulated. Sex causes chemical changes to the brain, a brain what is still developing. I s/w a shrink, and asked if this could have permanent affects on the brain... He said it made sense that it could, but there are no studies on that (how would you conduct a study like that!?!?!?) I believe this can lead to hyper-sexual children. Too much or too little of anything is not good. Hyper anything w/kids is sure as hell not good. <br />
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I dated a woman who was abused. It would take a LONG time to cover 1/2 the history on her, but the sex was amazing, so amazing, I figured that no matter how good I was, no one was that good! I knew she was seeing a psychologist - turns out it was a psychiatrist, and she said the shrink said she may not be "dissociative"... I asked if she had multiple personality disorder & she freaked. I never believed that stuff - until I got to know her. I thought about it, s/w her shrink, and came up with 7 "personalities." Turns out, there were 9, 2 so damaged, they were like catatonic children. She was abused by her grandfather, her father, uncle, and who knows who else.<br />
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From my reading and my experience with her and 1 other woman, I'd say those who were sexually abused early in life are above average in the sexual libido department, but sex is wonderful for you, so if they are in a good relationship, that is a positive thing. I W-I-S-H my wife had a damn libido!

I just want to scream!!!!! I was abused as a teen and a young adult in a marriage for ten years. I still have a strong sex drive and now am in a lesbian relationship with a woman that has been abused and has very little or no desire for sex ( which I internalized as not wanting me) it is so strange to think that a person gives you all of this passion in the beginning and then it just goes away... I love her dearly. <br />
we have been through so many things and come a long way. Mnay things have changed and gottten so much better. We planned to get married this past April- she postponed it ( for other reasons) I was pissed, because I thought of myself, at the time, as J the great and she so wrong (especially in the patience waiting on sex area)... Now that we waited and have gone through some counseling ( Break up or Break through by Dr Dina Evan- our study guide for counseling ) we have learned many things and shared much about our dysfunctions. We set a new date for Nov. However the lack of sex is making me think prehaps this is always going to be this way.... (she admited it tonight. that she did not think it was going to change and did not expect me to contiune in the realaitonship, but that she did not know if she wanted to do anyhting about it. she further stated.If I want her to be with me she would give me sex , but she does not want to be touch or physically bothered. This makes me totally not want her then, it feels robotic and forced.<br />
I just dont know what to do...I have decided to postpone the wedding this time.<br />
Iam really committed to her. I only want her to be there for me as well.<br />
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Im angry, as the above post says ,at the thief that stole my lovers safety, trust and desire!

I'm in a lesbian relationship and she's been abused who hasn't most have I choose not to let it effect me why does she my gf doesn't ever come to me for sex always I to her :( it's wack and there is love and cuddling and flirting its all pg though I want passion and desire our stories are so similar :( I'm sorry I know how you feel

Any experience of abuse is sad to hear and I'm sorry for everyone here that has had to live with this kind of experience in their lives. I want to share something hopefully it will help those of you ready to hear it.<br />
Understanding can set you free from the behaviour you've 'become'...... for everything that confronts us and over 'powers' us when we are young, we enter a cycle of finding ways to feel like we are now the ones in 'power'. Some find this power in avoiding the behaviour completely, others will take on the behaviour in hopes of understanding how a person could do that to them, and to prove to themselves that now they understand how it can happen, they will never be hurt like that again. You don't have to become an abuser yourself although many will at least role play this act with a willing partner, but behaving in a way that is sexually powerful, is sometimes how those who have been over powered themselves, can feel strong in the face of an experience that frightened them. Either way, if its causing problems in your life, you need to re-asess the behaviour and seek out alternative ways of connecting with that feeling of power.

I too was abused as a child, and sometimes I feel guilty because I want sex. but I still have a great libido.

I was too. Molested once by my older step-brother when I was younger. I\'ve always felt like the high sex drive I developed was a direct result of that, n feel guilty whenever I think of n have sex cuz I\'m not married yet. I want it as much as I can get it, tellin myself im in control here, doin wutever I want with who I want- no one is controlling me. I\'m controllin me.

No matter what the abuse, there comes a time when you have no move on with. Playing the abuse card on another person, especially one you took an oath in the wedding vows is not only selfish, but abuse in itself. There comes a time in life where you have to stop playing the victim, grow up, and live life to the fullest.

I tried that but as soon as I go near her, I have an erection and I end up going the full way and earning her wrath. any solution for me to get my wife interested in love? Any help will be greatly appreciated.

I too can claim the childhood story of abuse. Happened for 6 yrs and have had manyyyyyy therapy sessions throughout the years. I must say though, I am on the overactive side of life. I want sex so much I don't often think of much else. Been married for the second time now for 6yrs. Huuby was abused as a child as well and has taken the low libido side. What a match huh? I admit I find myself thinking this may never really work no matter the love we have for each other. I do find though it is hard for both of us to be loving and caring in the sex dept. I find resentment of his past that makes him sexless and he finds it oddly weird that I want it so much after knowing how much I went through.

Recurring theme....childhood sexual abuse. It happened to me also. I know that is one of the reasons I have a strong sex drive. I know it sounds very odd but the fact that I was awakened to my sexuality early has made me into a sexually aware woman. Many children who were abused become sexually promiscuous as teens and adults. Others withdraw from the the intimacy of sex. It takes love and understanding to be in a relationship with someone who was abused as a child.

It is good to hear that people who were sexually abused, it did not affect their sexual desire....so that means it does not necessarily affect their outcome of who and what they are capable to feel....<br />
So how does one explain it for those who have always had a shut down libido and have never been abused with a normal upbringing? I wonder....

SnoweInn wrote:<br />
"Each individual has to make the conscious decision to move on - to want the intimacy and human contact from someone they Trust Love and Value."<br />
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Yup. High five on that.<br />
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Abuse in any form is never "gotten over". It's either learning how to deal with it or pushing it so far out of your mental here and now that you are able to move forward. <br />
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I think one of the hardest things to do is to forgive ourselves when abuse happens. I can just say for myself that I felt, and still do at times, feel responsible for a situation that wasn't of my own making or understanding.

i was also abused when i was 8.the abused stop when i was 12 and it was my owen father! I promised no matter what happen in the past it wil not affecht my futuer. for a wayel it was good.ihave 2 chilldren . was happy with my man. than something hit me i totaly change. i heat sex or any touch of my man i try to tel him but he juist dont listen. i am not happy withe him i told him ,but he would not taalk. i am sinkking and i dont know what toe do?

I was also raped when I was 12, it seems like i have a higher stronger sex drive than most bc of it. also, my current boyfriend doesnt understand why i like it so offen, he says it feels better when u wait a while before doing it again... >:/ VANILLA!!!!!!!!!!! lol well, thats my 2 cents :)

I'm with missunderstood on this. I just wish I could convey the sense as eloquently as she.<br />
I have the sense that if I am not being abused then I must be abusing and yes ...I know all that crap about going to see a counsellor..........I've done it for years...told the same story a thousand different ways....gained insight and perspective,,,,but....here I am........

I was raped as a teen and th first 3 years after I was afraid of men and didnt trust them. sexually I hve had only three partners since then but once i decided that iwasnt going to let what happened to me stop me i was able to let go and take the chance. its a hard long process and I think that its up to the prson to deal with it and stand up to or it will haunt them forever. I have been married for going on 5 years now and my hubby is the one who refuses my sex drive is somewhat high but his is not but my marriage is not all the way sexless but i truly know and understand how you all feel

Then again, a lot of sexual abused women have a sex-drive that's gone wild, over the top. That happens too! And some of them end up as prostitutes, that might seem free will, but it certainly is not!

I do not envy any of you who have been sexually abused. What an awful thing to do to a child. I know it happens to a lot of people! I feel, though, that I'm a victim of it, every week, as my wife was abused as a teen. I am sad for her. And, I try to be so very patient always. But, I must admit that I can't help but be angry, sometimes - not at her, but at the situation caused by someone else. I know I must do my best to understand her situation very consistently and show consistent patience and personal care. <br />
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I don't find justice or equilibrium in the fact that not much care seems to be given to the fact that the spouse didn't do anything to deserve the situation either. And he/she has to learn, at an older age, how to build coping mechanisms that don't hurt the abused spouse or cause her to feel guilty. It's a very tough prospect - a labor of deep true love. She's worth it. But, man, is it difficult.<br />
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She has worked through a lot of issues, and we are starting to go to counseling again. But, when her father was alive, I found myself angry with him, a lot.<br />
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I never want to have an affair. I just want someone to truly want my love. I DO appreciate that she tries to give to me. But, just to hear her be affected by my touch would be like spring water in the desert.

I can relate to the sexual abuse as a child. It effects every person individually. some may shut down their sexuality, while others libido may rate high off the richter scale.<br />
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Each individual has to make the conscious decision to move on - to want the intimacy and human contact from someone they Trust Love and Value.<br />
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Going from the extreme: not letting anyone touch me, to the other: having a highly sexual relationship with my husband, was a long journey. not everyone can make that journey, or even part way through because of the the emotional and psychological damage that the predators have done to us.<br />
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To the spouses of the victims. You also have a choice to make: You can stick around and be patient and want your loved one to get over thier trauma. You can gently prod them in the right direction.<br />
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Or, you can cut your losses, and your broken heart and leave. Sometimes, if the victim chooses not to get over their trauma, its not going to get any better.<br />
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oh and like someone else here said, lots of cuddling, kissing and just plain old hand holding helps alot, but on the victim's terms. force the issue too much and you become just like the predator in thier eyes.<br />
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I hope this gives you insight.

Everyone will not react to one thing the same way. Your answer is with in you. Just never give up on effort. The day you stop fighting is the day you lost. Your still in the fight, dont let your past hold you back from a beautiful future.

I am curious about this as well. I was raped as a child, but that has not affected my libido in the least. I have a strong sex drive. My 1st husband had a strong sex drive(we divorced for other reasons), but my husband now seemed to have a strong sex drive prior to marriage, but it has slowly gone over the years.<br />
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It is interesting to see that there are quite a few of us who had been abused as children, but still have strong sex drives.

I was sexually abused also and have a strong sex drive.

I was abused as a teen. Abuse does not concrete your lack of desire. Being a manipulative woman does thought. I have a very strong sex drive. My husband does not! I think that's why I married him, he's not sexually threatening. I just wish he would just throw me down and have at it!

I could have written this!

I too was sexually abused, and my sex drive is fine. I think society imposes the stigma that an abused child can not sexually function, as opposed to there counter parts that have not been. I have never forgotten the horrible things done to me, and i probably never will.

Marriedwoman: <br />
Your contribution to the discussion is very interesting, and very important. Prior to your post, the assumption was that sexual abuse during childhood automatically meant a dysfunctional libido. I'm glad to hear it ain't necessarily so.

I am curious by this. I was abused as a child, yet I have a very strong sex drive. I find that I have a hard time staying in a relationship. Now that I am married, I find it difficult to think of this as a long-term plan, but live more day by day, which I am sure is a result of my abuse, but it has not had an affect on my sex drive or ability to enjoy sex.

I am a counselor and have met many couples with these type of issues. It is important to say that everyone is different. i had a woman who was desperate to change, but kept bringing up old abuse by her 1st husband and now what she calls abuse by her second. It is not abuse but she interprets it that way. She had many therapists and they all failed. She was very open with me, and told me all of her feelings, everything. After several sessions I suggested that she was letting her 1st husband win. She was letting the abuse continue. I yelled at her to fight him, to not let him ruin this marriage. She started to yell with me and we called him terrible names. Then I told her that her current husband had not abused her, it was the thoughts put in her head by the first ******. She admitted that she wanted *******, and to be able to love her husband. I suggested we meet together and i convinced them that he needed to learn massage, because massage can be very relaxing and can be a real turn on if done right. There are books out there on this kind of massage. then I told him in private to not try sex the first few times, build up to it. They called back and 3 weeks later everything is getting better. After sex one night she called to her ex and told him what great sex she is having and their problems with sex was all his fault, teh she said, excuse me, time for round 2.

I will!<br />
I'd love to screw you....any day!<br />
As a man myself, the thought of you as a man spreading your legs open in front of me makes me want to screw you even more.<br />
Oh Wallbyedward, if that is the name you go by. you are so driven by your **** that my **** wants to get into you. <br />
A man's tongue certainly knows how to seduce man in between his legs, don't you think!<br />
But of course, since you are so driven by sex in your mind, twenty four seven, forget your childhood sex abuse problems, forget about your wife's problems and forget about the innocent littles that you fantasize having sex with whilst in church, worry about me. I'm the man you're looking for, let me screw you nice and hard in between your legs! And who knows, you'll even have a little lovely babe coming out of them!<br />
The truth of the matter is for you, wallabyedward, is that man has not only evolved to have sex with women, but also with men and you are the one I am very tempered to screw!<br />
Open wide baby!

Patience and Love will help, hang in there...