Sexless With My Best Friend

Many years ago, I dated off and on "D". We were a fireball of a relationship - always arguing, always loving, nothing was ever half done with us. There was an age gap (7 years) so when I was in college, he was nearing 30. He pushed me to choose to marry then or not at all. I chose to not get married and finish college. I was living off campus in a house with 3 girls so we were a really popular house :-) and B became one of the guys who hung out there. We realized we had alot in common and quickly became friends. A few months later we started hooking up. I can't say we dated..we just started having sex one night. The first couple of weeks were GOOD sex. A month later he asked me to marry him. We were so well connected - didn't argue, didn't have big fights - I thought oh wow, this is how relationships are supposed to be. So I agreed. We didn't marry for 2 years as I still wanted to finish my degree before getting married. Do things right, you know. He also needed to finish school - art major. Should have been my first warning sign. So we get married - let me say first off I never wanted a big wedding but as he was an only child, he felt he owed his mom a traditional wedding. So the wedding turned out to be over 300 people. The night of our wedding he was so drunk, he just sat out on the balcony. No sex my wedding night.  Years went by, we changed careers, moved a lot. Through it all we were best friends. I realize now he was separating me from my family and friends - he didn't want to go anywhere without me, didn't want me to go places without him. I was in the early years of my marriage so I thought it was sweet and loving. We both went back to college for 2nd degrees. After finishing he ended up accepting a teaching job near where his parents lived. I wasn't thrilled - I'm not their favorite person which they have made known - but it's what he wanted so I agreed only on the assurance that when we retired, we retired to the coast where my family is from and where I love. So at this point we've both been teaching a few years, the sex was there but it was routine and boring, usually with him asking me as I was cooking dinner if we would be having sex tonight. After being married for eight years we had a son (who's 8 now) and things change as they do for new parents. We went from having sex 1-2x a week to 1-2x a month. At this point, B had found us a house down the road from his parents. Again, not my first choice but I went along with. We were renting but there was alot of space and some woods that went with the house so it was nice. Sex at this point dropped to 1-2x every 2 months. 3 years later B's parents "gave" us some land for our wedding anniversary - right next door to them. Well we built a house that his father felt he had every say so and many arguments errupted from that. Again let me stress that B and I never argued. We from the beginning act so cautiously around each other. So the house was built and we moved in. Sex was still in the 1-2x every 2 months range. Our sex life, when it happened was extremely unremarkable and had been since the first few years. It would take him forever to get hard and then only lasted a few minutes. I spent many nights unsatisfied, crying myself to sleep. He was completely unaware things were wrong on my end. I realize I should have spoken up but having seen the flip side, I wanted to keep things on the status quo. So the November after moving in that January to the new place, we had sex. I remember it specifically because I was ovulating and I prayed I wouldn't get pregnant from that sex encounter as it was so sad and empty. But I did. I had a beautiful little girl (who's now almost 4) but the pregnancy went bad and the delivery was a nightmare - they almost lost both of us 3 times.  Since my daughter I can count on my hands how many times we've had sex and during the past 18 months, none at all.

I have now been married to B for 16 years. We have 2 beautiful children and he is a perfect dad. He is a great best friend and everyone is always telling me how lucky I am to have this man as he's so wonderful. But they don't see me going to sleep every night crying because there is no intimacy between us.  My family wants me to leave and move back home so that I can surround myself with people who love me, so that I can learn again that I am lovable. I don't want another relationship with someone else but I don't want to be in this one either. He's in therapy now. We've finally had A LOT of long talks. He says he can't live without me but my saddest thing is I know I can live without him. I feel so tired after 16 years. 40 is too young to be this tired. I know you have to work at marriage but should you have to work at loving one another if the other claims that you are all they want?
BethKWright BethKWright
36-40, F
7 Responses May 30, 2012

This is a little similar to my experience, except that we mutually agreed to move away from both of our families early on. Passive-aggressive behavior is toxic to a relationship, but it is not personal - it will sabotage work and social friendships as well. If you have passive-aggressive tendencies too, that can magnify the conflict and lead to mutually assured destruction. More importantly, if you personally are not clear and assertive, you could carry the same pattern forward into another relationship.

Physically, he may have other things going on too. Has he ever had his testosterone levels checked? A sense of failure or low self-esteem, age, weight, metabolic-syndrome/diabetes, and autoimmune conditions can make a persistent drop in T and blood nitrogen levels (which is what gets the penis hard). So can depression and some medications. It won't correct passive aggressive behavior to get a diagnosis, but neither will dealing with assertiveness fix a plethora of physiological issues.

I don't understand why you feel unloved. I don't understand what the problem is.

I hope you're being facious. Let's see... she's got a guy who doesn't really pay attention to what she wants or needs in general, but rather does things his parents' way. He moved her in next door to his parents who really don't like her. He's promising that they'll move back to where she is from "when they retire", and from her age, I'd say that's about 25 years off. The intimate part of their relationship has been almost denied her since that first 2 weeks, when he proved that he can have amazing sex, but he just doesn't want to. What kind of a man is it who doesn't want to make love with the woman he married - even on their wedding night they didn't have sex. It was his choice to get "too drunk" for it. Being able to pinpoint the conception of her children is telling.

Perhaps you haven't been here long enough to realize that for the refused - who want to have a sex life - that it hurts BADLY to be refused and denied over and over again - until we don't want it. Sex is one major way that we feel loved, and they are refusing to give it.

Really - can't you understand that a bride, a young wife, then a long-term wife would want to make love to her own husband? Or, the feeling that she's somehow not good enough for even her own husband to want her? I dealt with that for years myself, and the way one reacts to that qualifies it as a form of emotional abuse. It would be moreso when the husband like in this case seems to not care otherwise for his wife's emotional well being - preferring to surround her with people who actively dislike her rather than strangers - some of whom would eventually like her - or her family who do love her.

I think if he is making an effort is worth a chance

It's your life and your choice, many of us have opted for divorce - but I think everyone's journey is different. I'm in my forties, almost all my kids are grown (two at home, but only for a few more years) took me forever to grow a spine and our relationship is a sorry excuse for a marriage. The sexless part for me, was the icing on the cake. I think it may be possible if many of the other components are present and accounted for.

Obviously you have been going along with his ideas your whole marriage. Perhaps it is now time to start looking after number 1.<br />
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Seek Legal advice and start to plan your exit. I also like the idea of moving closer to your parents.<br />
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Stay Strong & Good Luck

Some marriages you could "work at" until the hole in your arse heals over, and it will make no difference.<br />
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Seeing a lawyer in your jurisdiction may be very wise. The idea of moving back near your folks could be a brilliant move for you, but it might be a minefield of traps dependent on the access laws where you presently live.<br />
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This marriage does indeed look done as far as being a going concern, but there are likely to be some real difficulties in putting the full stop to it. Relevant information appears to be what you need. From that context, you can knock a plan together ba<x>sed on what is possible and what is not.<br />
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It'll be challenging. It'll be difficult. There will be a price to pay. <br />
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But you are already paying a HUGE price by staying in the dysfunctional situation.<br />
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Information and choice. Those are the only two things that are going to resolve this for you.<br />
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Tread your own path.

I want to thank you for your honest reply. I think realizing that I am in a passive-aggressive relationship where I am made to feel guilty for not thinking about others first has been the biggest windfall for me. Your words also helped me in knowing that yes it WILL be painful, yes it WILL be difficult and yes, there WILL be a price to pay.

call "D"!!! Now!

He's actually been contacting me!! We're not looking to start back as he's aware of what I'm going through emotionally but he's there reminding me I'm beautiful and sexy.