Why The Male Refuser Cuts So Deep

I in no way want to diminish the very real pain and frustration of the many men who have shared their stories but want to share something only another female can really identify with - the way the male refuser cuts so deep into the heart and soul of a woman.
Males are programmed by nature and evolution to be the sexual aggressor, to conquer, to possess. The female has evolved to respond and surrender...or not. I am only pointing out that the male in general has more experience of sexual rejection and is perhaps better prepared to deal with it. In the animal kingdom the male is the predator - can you imagine a male dog refuser who opts not to follow the scent of the *****, or the lion with an aversion to the females in his pride?
As for fairy tales - well they are often deep and dark with sexual symbolism so where would Snow White, Cinders and the Sleeping Beauty be if their princes had been inclined to refuse?
We are programmed, perhaps wrongly, to believe that most men are keen to have sex so when our partner withdraws all interest it seems to go against nature and it cuts us to our core.
wracy wracy 46-50, F 30 Responses May 30, 2011

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LaoTzu and ulae both make very good points. Another point I will make in addition-I was NOT raised as a man to expect rejection from females. I stupidly, nievely, believed that because sex is so wonderful and feels so great that people of ALL sexes want it, at least most of the time. Then I began trying to have sex in high school, actually began to try and date women (girls), which I hoped would lead to some physical intimacy which THEN might lead to sex, and that was a struggle in and of itself. Just trying to date was far more difficult than anything I had been led to expect. I ended up having one girlfriend during high school, but she lived in a different state, and although we lost our virginity to one another it happened all of once. She ended up going to college when I was a senior, and my grades were so bad I failed to graduate, which led to the end of my first relationship. During my late teens and 20's I was able to get 3 long-term girlfriends, and had a decent amount of sex, but by the time I turned 30 all of a sudden I had trouble finding a woman to date, let alone have sex with, and believe me when I say striking out 8 YEARS in a row did nothing but destroy my ego. I finally broke out of my horrendous slump, and actually had a couple of girlfriends before I met my wife and got married in my early 40's, but by then I had heard enough talk of the lack of sex in marriage. Sorry, already HAD enough of a lack of sex in my life, so I made absolutely certain my wife and I had a talk about sex before we tied the knot, and we compromised on how much sex we were going to have. She, my wife, agreed to all of this with no pressure from me. So tell me, how is it better for me to find out my wife flat out lied to me about sex before we got married? I feel I got played, used, manipulated, etc. And once again my ego took a nosedive. Before, when I went years without sex, I could at least rationalize that away by saying "Well, if I could just get a girlfriend I could have sex". Now that I was married, how could I rationalize not being able to have sex? Because my wife was so repulsed by me? Doesn't do much for the male ego, now does it? A man gets married, and for the most part that man has now agreed to forsake all others for his wife. But now his wife forsakes him? Wtf?

lovemeback --- spot on. I was brought up to make no political distinction between genders (and many other attributes) so I was never taught that lesson (ok for men to be rejected).

Let me repeat: "men are more used to rejection" and "women are more used to getting raped" are homologous claims. They may be true, but that makes no one feel any better.

See, I have to chime in again. You are comparing apples with pears here. When you say men are conditioned to be used to refusal - you neglect mentioning that in a marriage its by the same woman, over and over again. Rejection from time to time by different women...whole different thing. Then you mention that women being refused by the same man is so demoralizing and confidence shattering - uh, anyone forget that the men here are being refused by the same woman over and over again - the woman who supposedly loves him - all of him. How are the generic social conditioning variables comparable to the exclusive aspects of a monogamous relationship? If you want to say by and large, when out and dating, men take more chances and are more okay with getting knocked back by strangers they don't yet know - fine. But societal norms are changing there too. If you want to say that in a marriage or exclusive relationship, men are more okay with being rejected by the woman they love as opposed to women in an exclusive relationship by the man they love.....lets think about that some more please. Do we really want to get into a ******* contest about who hurts more when the person they love consistently rejects them and they are loyal and faithful and keep trying? Really?

lovemeback, I understand what you are saying, maybe I said it too harshly. I have taught both my boys that women will reject them but it doesn't hurt to try. I guess that's what I was trying to say. And I agree, it does hurt no matter who you are. But, I still believe a man is more prepared for it.

Invisible2unow "Men are taught that thay will be rejected". I kinda missed that day at life school I suppose. Whjere did I go wrong dang! I wish I could have know that I could have been ok all along. Are you serious! Rejection hurts no matter you sex or lack there of...

Wracy, Thank you so much for taking a risk and putting that out there. It is 100% true. If we are refused, we automatically feel we are lacking in some way, or that our Lion has found another ***** to chase around that is younger, prettier, smarter, etc.

I agree, Men are taught that they will be rejected, and to not let it get them down. We are never told that!

So, Kudos to you for having the courage to share this, and Thanks again, I needed to hear that!

wracy-----" when you are in your heels and wonderbra and HE opts not to notice and makes excuses to avoid any sort of intimacy?"

Speaking from a macroview here - If this happens more than a very few times, and he is not in a coma - then one should cease all seductive attempts. He has lost his chance. She is wasting her precious sexuality on someone not worthy.

He who snoozes, loses.

Because going down that road, whereas she is continually pursuing him, will end in failure.

He will, ultimately, lose respect for the woman. He will take his guilt and failure to sexually respond and please his woman out on that very same woman.

Interesting thread wracy!!!!

I don't think the rejection hurts less from either side...

However, let's be honest here people. How many times have you read men write in this forum about being absolutely shocked that women experience this situation? Almost every new male poster makes this observation. Why? Because as a evolutionary and societal pattern, men do GENERALLY want sex more often then women, it is a biological fact. Yes, there are some situations where the woman has the higher sex drive. Absolutely. But, it is not the general norm.

So, when a woman gets rejected in a world where it seems that all around her are men begging their wives to **** and they can't get their husband to touch them wearing their sexiest lingerie and offering everything up to them, OF COURSE a woman is going to feel something is wrong with it looks, weight, personality, whatever. I know that I felt this way. It drove me crazy to listen to my women friends complain about their husbands high sex drives and having to beat them back.

Such problems!

I felt like screaming, 'at least your husband WANTS you'.....and inside I would be thinking...what the hell is so wrong with me???

Rejection by a woman while horrible and individually heart wrenching for the man in such a situation, it is considered the expected norm. Right or wrong. Men chase women and try to have sex with them. Women are conditioned to just believe that men want sex, so when they are rejected, it speaks to their deepest fears of desirability and worth as a woman. My husband doesn't want the most basic thing that men desire from women. What's wrong with me?

I get what the original poster is saying. Totally.

I love LaoTzu's comment. Back to the OP: "the male in general has more experience of sexual rejection" --- right, like "the female in general has more experience of getting raped" --- feel better now? "and is perhaps better prepared to deal with it" --- like "the female is better prepared to be raped". Look, we are human. We are all somewhat different. We are all sad, between "a little" and "wake up screaming in the night" sad. Let's just leave it at that, shall we?


How right you are - women can be very skilled at seduction and flirting but what happens when you are in your heels and wonderbra and HE opts not to notice and makes excuses to avoid any sort of intimacy? If he does not pursue and we start to take on the role of predator then it is the beginning of the end in my view. The more pressure we put on him the less interest he feels - its a vicious circle of talks, tears, broken promises and heartache.

Talking of elephants there is the elephant in the drawing room aspect to all this - if a man feels no interest or arousal then the prospect of sex is dead in the water as his body is going to have the final vote.

I think I get what you were trying to say. I know that initiating is *not* a favorite of mine. I hate it, hate it, hate it. If I'm doing so in the first place, I'm already sexually frustrated. To then be turned down by the man that *should* (in my mind) be pursuing me is like being slapped in the face twice.

As I told my wife she has never experenced sexual rejection from me, There for I think she never knew or just did not care. Letting her read my post here was the best move I ever made. It opened her eyes and helped for now, I really hope that it keeps us closer. It was the last straw though. If it goes back to the way it was I will bounce. Life is to short to be un happy at the expence of another.

I am not a sex crazy man. I am crazy about sex lol. I dont demand sex ever day. If your man does not want sex let him see your post let him see what he is doing to you. May help, cant hurt! I feel your pain and hope he gets his grove back for both of your sake.

Thanks for all the feedback whatever sex you are! Seriously, I am NOT saying we suffer more - just differently to a certain extent. When a woman pursues a man for sex it goes against the natural order of things and, as some of you have mentioned, other females are telling us what a chore sex is and how they wish their husband would back off. How many men here can say they have had a male friend or co-worker say that about their wives? Which brings us to to another myth, stereotype, call it what you will - men are supposed to want sex so would probably not make that admission but CAN complain about not getting enough.

Anyway this is not a competition and the great thing about this site is that we can all let down our defences and give and receive support from others who understand.

I am also interested in another unfair sex bias - this time for the male - men often do not have the same support system when in deep emotional pain as they are subject to the good old "big boys dont cry" myth. They do.

Thanks for all the feedback whatever sex you are! Seriously, I am NOT saying we suffer more - just differently to a certain extent. When a woman pursues a man for sex it goes against the natural order of things and, as some of you have mentioned, other females are telling us what a chore sex is and how they wish their husband would back off. How many men here can say they have had a male friend or co-worker say that about their wives? Which brings us to to another myth, stereotype, call it what you will - men are supposed to want sex so would probably not make that admission but CAN complain about not getting enough.

Anyway this is not a competition and the great thing about this site is that we can all let down our defences and give and receive support from others who understand.

I am also interested in another unfair sex bias - this time for the male - men often do not have the same support system when in deep emotional pain as they are subject to the good old "big boys dont cry" myth. They do.

I disagree with the statement that it is harder for a woman in a sexless marriage than it is for a man. Why? Although this might not be well known to women, the truth is men that have lots of sex not only usually build up a strong ego, they are also looked up to by other men. A very sexually active man is idolized and envied by men who have little to no sex. I am a good example of this truth. I struggled finding women to have sex with for most of my life. I guess I am not tall enough, I didn't make enough money, I am not hung like a **** star, whatever. Then I finally meet a woman I fall in love with, that I thought I could trust, and before we get married we even decide approximately how many times a WEEK we are going to have sex. Starting right after our honeymoon the number of times we had sex dropped to how many times a MONTH. Once we got past the 1/2 year mark in our union it was are we even going to have sex THIS MONTH? After a year and a half of marriage my wife said out loud, in front of me and her gay friend, "I just have NO sex drive at all anymore." Well, just great. I had so much trouble having sex with women BEFORE I got married, and now I am having so much trouble having sex with one woman AFTER I got married. At this point in my life I feel I, for some reason I shall NEVER understand, was just not meant to have sex. Yet I was cursed with a good, healthy sex drive. All of this has totally crushed me, I am junk. Don't tell me it hurts less because I am a man, because it is NOT true

It works for me.

Even if it did not work for me, what is the big deal? Is this the hill you want to die on, guys?

****, if I had to die on an unconsecrated land, my first choice would be on a hill that put the suffering of refused women on a pedestal higher than that of refused men. It is ILIASM chivalry, for goodness' sake.

The humiliation that comes from these sexless marriages is very soul sucking. I think that the brains of refusers both male and female might end up looking very much alike. Some parts of them have abscessed and died LOL. Well most of us in sexless marriages did not start out that way but something changed. For a woman it is devastating to be rejected by the male that chased her and desired her. I think one thing stands out in my mind---the day he accused me of trying to rape him in a hotel bed. He refused me big time. Just can't get that picture out of my mind.

I could debate this topic with you, but to what end ?

It would not do anything to help you move forward.

It is a side bar to the main trial. A distraction.

Let's just say that you are absolutely right.

Now what ?

Tread your own path.

I love this post, Wracy! I have contemplated these exact ideas myself. My husband is the refuser and, in all of my life experience, I have no tools on how to deal with this. I have never been in this situation before and I know very few women that have (they have all been friend of a friend). My girlfriends all make jokes about how to get their husbands to stop pestering them for sex all of the time. It makes me feel even worse and like there is really something wrong with me. As women, we are trained to believe that men have an unstoppable sex drive and we have no idea what to do when they don't.

My wife in the early days, would punch me in the gut at times out of the blue - she said it was in play. When I told her it hurt - she said "you're a man, it shouldn't hurt so much". Are we comparing how much we hurt, how deeply we are wounded and how many scars we carry? Do we want to compare the quantum of suffering? Does it make one feel better to believe that one gender suffers more and the other less? I remember one of Rambo movies - Rambo has just been tortured and he's wounded, but he rescues his commanding officer - he says - Sir, remember that training you gave on how to ignore the pain - well, it doesn't work. Just because we say it and draw up social conventions around something, doesn't make it so. Please consider.

The pain of rejection is felt by both sexes.

The only thing I would add is this:

When the male is the refuser then the overall level of intimate interaction is lower in the relationship relative to relationships where the female is the refuser.

In general it appears that once the male loses sexual desire for his partner then most intimate bonding behaviors eventually go extinct.

When the refuser is the female the overall level of intimate interaction, relatively speaking, remains a bit higher. This is because even if the female does not wish sexual intercourse she will generally still be receptive to some bonding behaviors such as hugging and kissing.

Of course not true in all cases, but in general.

Jelly, I suggest you re-post your comment as a Forum Topic. That will allow people to respond to you without hi-jacking Wracy's thread.

Wracy, I agree with you that there ARE differences to the responses of the two genders. But I agree with other posters about the feelings of rejection being equally devastating for both sides.

I think one thing women contend with is the myth that "all men want sex all of the time" - therefore if YOUR man doesn't want sex with you, it MUST be your fault. . . .

OTOH, men do have a different myth which says that "women don't want sex, they just want affection". So if a man is NOT getting sex from his wife, he is possibly less likely to see it as his very own personal shame . . . .

But in terms of the pain of rejection, it is equivalent IMO. Because, as Auspicious wisely points out, the issue of actually being married changes the dynamic.

In marriage both people are (supposedly) selecting a life partner who will be the only person they have sex with. Cutting the spouse off unilaterally from this is an expression of hostility at worst or lack of caring at best.

Both feel very painful and both result in feelings of inadequacy, failure, resentment, etc. etc. etc. - in both genders.

I ask all of you this: I wonder, like maybe many of you, in today's society in where both men and women are equals (I don't mean this in a bad way) I wonder if our ability to be in long term relationships for many of us, is even possible (I mean romantic relationships). Is sex, and the intimacy and closeness it brings something that NATURALLY wanes over time with the same partner? Is the human condition such that we are all meant for a romantic relationship with just one partner all our life? I think not. If so, there would be no affairs-ever. And yet half of marriages end up in divorce because of infidelity. What is the genesis of these affairs? A man who just thinks about sex all the time (is that not natural for men). A woman, who once giving childbirth, has body changes and chemical changes that in essence makes her less sexually active in many cases? A combination of these and other factors? My point is SOMETHING changes and we grow apart. No one WANTS to grow apart, it happens.

Yes, there are countries and cultures where divorce rate is near or at 0. These cultures are different family structures in which case many times the women can't escape their marriages even if they wanted to.

Any thoughts?

I really don't think gender matters that much in this situation and the reason is because you are tied to one partner. There are no other acceptable opportunities or outlets if you are refused. Male or female it's just as destructive to be continuously rejected. The effects may vary from individual to individual but essentially it evokes the same kind of pain. The alternatives are the same but the solutions aren't always equitable due to bias in some court systems. We are all people and we all have the same basic needs the social conditioning we receive may make men more reluctant to talk about how they feel but if you read the stories here there really doesn't seem to be a great deal of difference in the amounts of anger, confusion, hopelessness, and just about any other emotion you would care to look at. The expressions may be different but it is still there.

The hurt of rejection is just as bad for men as for women that's very true ... but I do agree with wracy that societal norms dictate that men are always up for it and it's women who are coy and inclined to be reluctant. We all know this isn't the case but as Bemyself says it is still not mainstream for a woman to be the driving force sexually. My husband, although very sexually dominant initially, withdrew from me totally after I was pregnant with our only child, leaving me with a very difficult decision. I chose to stay. With hindsight, which is always clear of course, I shouldn't have ... but at the time I thought I was doing the right thing. And I thought he would change. Which he didn't.

Couldn't have said it any better..... wracy

Rejection HURTS!!!!

It hurts both ways. As a man being rejected by a woman is common in the dateing years. We get used to that, because of the way our brains work. But once you wed, then it is a different story. It is the wasted years of no sex. Men if not tied to a woman by marriage can usually find sex. Unless they are just not trying hard enough. But when you promise something years in the past, and suddenly the woman refuses, then you are stuck with a terrible choice of what to do. It happens a lot, and is very sad, because there is no easy solution and men like to solve problems one way or the other. But the institution of marriage is a strong force and when it goes bad, sometimes there just are no solutions, except very sticky ones that hurt people.

Wracy - yes, rejection is a hurt to everyone. Women are brought up to be good and for a woman to love sex is still a mainstream taboo. I spent my whole growing-up hearing and hoping that that all men were driven by their testosterone and end up with a refuser! Men may hope that they won't get a "not tonight dear......." wife and many wives long for a "I am too tired tonight..." husband but the cruellest joke played by the gods is for a "I never have a headache and am never too tired" wife whose husband slowly turns into one who won't be alone with her, go to bed with her or even look at her.

Stay strong, stay sexy x

I agree that it is as difficult for a man in a sexless marriage as a one wants to feel rejected by their spouse.

However, as a woman who was rejected by her spouse, until I found this site, I felt very ashamed...ashamed because of the stereotype of men always wanting "it" and women being the one in the relationship who were "frigid". I thought that I had to be the only woman in the world whose husband would not have sex with her. Finding this site was a great relief to helped me realize that it really was not me, it was him.

I think that as difficult as it is for men to be rejected by their wives, the one thing they have is this stereotype that says that women don't always "put out." So at least they have that one little thing to hang on to if nothing else. Not that that's much consolation.