What Next?

Hi, like many of you I guess, live in a largely sexless marriage. I married about 15 years ago thinking that I had found an amazing partner. It was my second marriage and his first. He was a freelance journalist and my career was just taking off.  Today I find myself more and more resentful that all my financial resources are being used up each month and he doesn't manage to bring home any finances. We went to a therapist who told us that the money wasn't the issue but rather the fact that my husband never takes me anywhere, organizes any evenings out or romantic encounters.  The therapist wanted us to go out once a week on a "date night". I was excited at first as this was a break in the week for me. He organized one evening out and that was it.  But Christmas was a real surprise. For years I had dreamed of going to a special city that means a lot to me. My Christmas present was a wonderful coupon describing the hotel we would be staying at, and promising me an amazing weekend. The therapist told me that he had helped my husband organize this. So for the first time in years I felt excited again at the prospect that there would be more in my life than working and taking care of the kids.  A romantic weekend? Wow! I guess you can imagine the rest of this story.... that was three years ago and the weekend never materialized. The date nights never happened and the therapy stopped.  Sometimes in my mind I pretend we had the romantic weekend and imagine every hour of the day and what we would have done.... When I mention to my husband that it was quite hurtful that he got my expectations up and didn't deliver on it, he just brushes away the comment. 

We ended up going to another therapist and he told us that my husband has a problem with self-absorption. It is some form of a narcisstic personality problem. This means that if the event or activity isn't about him, and we are not focused on him, then he basically isn't interested.  For the past several years my husband has been working on books. They don't earn any money so I am paying most of the bills. I get angry at the lack of emotional intimacy, lack of sex and yet I have to pay for him.  I have a well paid job but really yearn for a romantic evening out.  My fantasy is to be taken away for a weekend by a man who has planned it in advance, knowing what I would enjoy. As it is, I feel pretty exploited now. I can earn the money, but shouldn't expect anything in return.  I spend a lot of time angry with him. But the therapist points out that there isn't a problem in the marriage as far as my husband is concerned. He is happy and doesn't see the problem. He argues that he contributes financially when he can, and basically doesn't have a sex drive so the lack of sex isn't of interest to him. The therapist offered us the name of a sex counselor which my husband agreed to, but in the end, he never mentioned it again so I realized it was just another example of him saying or doing something to get me off his back and he had not intention of following it through. 

Long story short- what next? I suppose the obvious answer is divorce, but here is the problem. We own two properties. One is entirely in my husband's name and the other is half in his name and half in mine. I have paid the mortgage on the second house for 15 years. If we divorce he get the first house entirely (it belonged to his family) and half of our home. I would also undoubtedly have to pay significant alimony to him as I have been the primary wage earner. Basically I would be left with nothing.   I am thinking that I could just wait until my youngest child who is 12 years old is out of school to make a move as clearly I am stuck financially. In any case, I don't want to marry again. I just wish that I could have some sex and a romantic evening out in exchange for funding this person's life!!  It is really lonely, but he just has no worried or concerns and seems really happy with his life. In the meantime, when I see my savings liquidated because he didn't manage to earn any money that month as a freelancer, it makes my blood boil.

Anyhow, enough ranting.  Just feeling a bit exploited....

lori6581 lori6581 46-50, F 13 Responses Jun 16, 2012

Your Response


You know, it cannot hurt to see an attorney. You might not be as screwed as you think you would be. For a long time I was in a similar situation, and we are just now heading to therapy. I hope I get better results, but we will see.

Thanks for all your comments. I know you are right. Wish I had the strength to uproot my life and children. Knowing I deserve more than this... but somehow lacking the fiber to pull the plug.

honey yor being a pushover STOP paying his bills 4 a while & only pay bills that concern the kids, he needs to see how it feels 4 blood 2 boil-like yors. have u tried watching a bit of **** with him at nite or on the weekends maybe with some wine? smell gorgeous act like an animal between the sheets talk dirty in his ear & during sex they like it wen u take initiative in that area hon x give it a go try & make divorce NOT an option, let me know how it goes x

I have honestly never seen anyone on this forum more in need of legal advise than you.

Because if you wait 5-7 years for your child to grow up, you may well end up owing FAR MORE to this dirtbag, first off. You will NOT have child support at that time, and he will have lived in this luxury for that much longer.

Second, you need some serious self-esteem.

And I say this all as someone who is in a similar - although not the same - situation, financially.

I suggest you consider an arrangement with your husband where you keep your home in return for exonerating him from child support. Of course you need legal advice FIRST - because your circumstances are known only to you AND these things are jurisdiction specific.

But as his earning power is uncertain, he may accept your offer to let him off child maintenance in return for the home. It seems you would be unlikely to see anything much in the way of money from him, so this MIGHT be a workable option for you. . . .

Talk to an attorney. See exactly what your rights are and where you stand with things and how you can go about changing things to avoid losing or giving any more to him.

Also, is there a way you can get your name taken off any of the bills/leases/mortgages, etc? If you are paying for anything of his that doesn't have your name on it, stop.

Buy enough food for you and your children.

Cancel his damn health insurance, cell phone, cable, internet, etc.

Do everything you can to force him to get a job and start contributing.

This marriage, IMO , sounds over. Like, irreparably over. He gave up a long time ago and is seemingly content to be a lazy piece of crap, letting you work, make all the money and pay for his lazy *** lifestyle. That is what we call a bum and a leech.

I don't think I would normally be so quick to recommend this, but I think you should almost have an affair. If you are going to "stuck" in this sham of a marriage for a while, you could at least get SOME of your needs met on the side.

" I would also undoubtedly have to pay significant alimony to him as I have been the primary wage earner. Basically I would be left with nothing."

"I am thinking that I could just wait until my youngest child who is 12 years old is out of school to make a move as clearly I am stuck financially."

Will you pay alimony to your husband at the expense of your children? IMHO you need legal advice...

Read even though your the woman - you cant have a relationship with a narc. Literally - you can not, nobody can. You just need to learn it and see it for yourself.

Sorry - its ****.

Good luck

-----" But the therapist points out that there isn't a problem in the marriage as far as my husband is concerned. "

More GOLD on this forum this morning!

No intimacy, paying all the bills and no involvement from the deadwood unless it is directly about HIM.

I strongly recommend you get legal counsel. Every single day that passes HE accrues benefits off of your hard work.

You need to cut out the deadwood, this cancer upon your life, before it entombs you within a financial framework where you will be footing spousal support for years. You MUST practice damage control right now.

Take the financial hit NOW (depending upon legal counsel of course).

This disease just gets worse with each passing day.

I know just how u feel. My wife pays 0 physical or emotional attention to me. Sometimes i feel invisible when she walks by me.

Last year for her birthday i planned a romantic get away ( for 1 nite). I thought of every detail. Made resv at the most beautiful resort and spa we had ever been to. I planned the entire days and eve. Shopping on fri and a late lunch. Romantic dinner and wine and massage by me etc. massage at the spa the next day etc. i even made a customized brochure of the entire weekend with the agenda and everything. I put it in with card for her bday. Oh and i even arranged for her sister to come over and stay with the kids.

Here's what happened. She opened the card took one look at the brochure ( she didnt even open it) and got pissed. I mean really pissed. How dare i think of myself she said. She could not dare leave my 13 year old step daaughter. She was going thru some emotional and mental health stuff. How dare i ask. I was so hurt and let down.

What hurt most was not that she could not go. But not once did she even say i wish i could go or sounds wonderful. The idea of being w me just disgusted her. She has not made love to me in the last year. I too just long for a little love and a little romance for all i do.

But its not coming. Probably ever. Why i stay i have no idea!

Dr Mikey: I hope you won't me saying this too much but you did **** up. A nice idea, but NOT ON HER BIRTHDAY. Maybe on your anniversary? Convention has it, like it or not, that it is HER birthday not yours. Mind you, the way she reacted, and presumably acts at other times suggests she is materialistic, self-centred and quite the over-reacting drama queen which also suggests a touch of the "me", "me", "me", about her. Just making a small point really, otherwise it perhaps shouldn't be that much hard work, like walking a tightrope.

A bit exploited?! He is a wholly self-centred leech, just as the the second therapist has identified. He is incapable of dredging up even the slightest sense of embarrassment or guilt at being a user. He is just indulging himself at your cost.

Have you got the best legal advice on your financial situation? I really think this is so unfair and I am usually fairly phlegmatic when it comes to most marriage break-ups, ie that there is a price to pay and that eventually you just have to get on with it. Not in your case.

I don't know what else to say.

our youngest is 12 also. i considered "waiting" too...but i don't want to go through my kids' high school years clenching my teeth in this relationship and know that i'll eventually need/want to get divorced anyway. want to give the kids a good role model as well..i.e. giving some value to my mental health and happiness. i am sure we will take a $ hit but this sucks...if my husband wasn't earning $ i'd be angry about that too......

You have sought legal opinion have you ? Or are you simply swallowing what this drone has said ? Unless you live in some weird jurisdiction I'd suggest that what the outcome of a divorce would see is a far more equitable split than that which you describe.

However, let's assume that what drone says is right.

If it cost you a less than fair share of the booty to claim your freedom and right to live your authentic life, would that not be a price you'd be prepared to pay ? Your exit price will never get any cheaper than it is today.


No-one gets a pass on it.

Tread your own path.