Odd Side Effects Of Sexless Marriage

So, in case you don't know my story, I am out of my sexless marriage. There were no kids, but I was in love with her like *crazy* in love. We had a good relationship for some years, but then there were some major hiccups that were no one's fault, and following that things got bad, blah blah blah, eventually sexless, etc...

I've been out since Late May. Separated since Feb.

Been noticeing some odd side effects.

The most bizarre, is that I have become VERY uncomfortable with people expressing affection to me. A friends put his hands on my shoulders, I jumped. A lady hugs me at church, I feel awkward in the extreme. Friends and family tell me they love me, and I don't know how to react. So odd. Anyone else out there have this?

FilteringMachine FilteringMachine
31-35, M
8 Responses Aug 12, 2012

Sounds somewhat familiar. Before dating and marriage I was not a very hugging or cuddling kind of guy. I tried these out and liked being physical a lot, once I started dating. As my sex life tanked, I lost interest being physical again. Now I do not have occasion to come in physical contact with anyone except my son. I don't miss anything. I never offer to hug anyone. In case of bereavement etc. I just hold hands briefly.

Wouldn't surprise me if you have become needy in the extreme. So when you are offered something close to what you ached for in your marriage you clamp down so as to not to devour it, publicly expressing how deprived you are.<br />
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As Mr. 1978 said you may want to consider some counselling for you.

It's funny, it started a couple of weeks ago. I think what I'm noticing is that I am so concerned over rejection that I don't really want to put myself out there.

I am only bothered when she touches me - which is rare.<br />
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All other human contact - especially from one certain lady - are not only welcome but cherished like a cool drink after long hot day.<br />
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Maybe you have replaced the anger and frustration that drove you out with fear of it happening with someone else. I think perhaps those suggesting counseling are correct. I am not an expert.... but PTSD kinda sound like it fits....there is no enemy to fight but you have perhaps fought long enough that you are now shadow boxing.

Well, I do have some enemies to fight right now that are frankly much, larger than a sexless marriage (not to diminish the gravity of a sexless marriage). I'm hoping to slay one of those dragons today so that I can slay the others in the coming weeks. So, I may simply be experiencing traumatic stress disorder, and haven't gotten to the 'post' part of it yet.

I don't know if I'd say this uncomfortableness is odd. You've been going through some pretty heavy stuff, and even though it has been a few months, you're still obviously dealing. You'll get there -- just going to take you some more time. I imagine being guarded when experiencing human touch or even day to day communication is pretty common for a lot of people after a divorce/separation.

I find I'm really good around people who I know respect me, and strangers. But once I get the hint of disrespect owing to my situation, it is like a manic dash to escape.

I think what is really happening is that I have a hard time respecting myself when I'm not earning money.

It IS hard to respect oneself after losing a job, or quitting for whatever reason. Just keep reminding yourself - this too shall pass - and some day - hopefully soon you'll look back through wiser stronger eyes at this time in your life, and pat yourself on the back for doing the right thing. You'll be able to have some pride in being courageous starting fresh (even though it's hard and scary). WAY too many of us will still be sitting back still bitching and moaning about our horrible situation we're unable/unwilling to do anything about. Take solace in the fact your actions likely will affect at least one person here, and inspire them to take that big scary leap too. The money will come some day - and the fact that you are down on yourself about not earning any currently defines you as a person who does care - not one that is going to willingly/purposely mooch off others their whole life with no respect to themselves OR the people they are using.

I think you are right. Thanks!

Maybe you have had to shut yourself off emotionally completely to deal with the breakup of your marriage, it's not been very long after all. It sounds like your friendships are suffering as well. I recognise what you are describing from when my first husband and I split up, I was just blocking every emotional avenue as it was too much to deal with. It's easier to just be numb to everything but then someone reaches through that barrier and its like wth and feels quite weird.

I think that is true. The strange thing is I felt fine until my divorce was finalized. Well, not fine, but I had a purpose - to get away! I felt comfortable in that purpose. I'm a little less comfortable with my purpose now - grad school. Looks like I can get in to one place (it is an online degree), but there is another where I REALLY want to go. So, I've moved myself up to the place I really want to go, will find an apartment (not easy when unemployed), get a part time job, and, after my first semester, try to transfer to the place I really want to go.

You have a plan, it sounds like a great plan. Onwards and upwards! There are often people looking for mature people to house share with, particularly where there is a high student population, they don't want the all night party people! Another option you could look at is house sitting, there might just be something available in your area. Best of luck!

No would not bother me. In fact i'd cherish it. <br />
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Filter have you thought of some personal counselling? Obviously this break up has affected you very hard.<br />
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Stay Strong & Good Luck

Oh yes I have. Just can't afford it right now. I'll say this - while I was still married I did not feel like this at all. All I wanted was touch, more and more of it. I think I based too much of my personal value on my marriage and my work. I feel like my big goal is to re-orient my values and have conviction in myself. Just having a hard time with that, mainly because I made such a big mistake with my marriage and job. So suddenly the opinion of others is very important to me, and yet I fear it all the same time.

You may be able to find free/low cost counseling in your area for low income patients.

There is free counseling available (with qualified therapists) at our local hospital, perhaps try yours?

Filter what doesn't kill you will only make you stronger. Keep soldering on buddy. Things will get better.

1 More Response

Nnnope. None of that would bother me in the least.

Well, I'd freak out at all that...but I've got hunka-hunka flamin' PTSD goodness going on.<br />
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My guess is you got so unused to being touched and getting affection that now it feels freaky, but that's pretty obvious.

I'm not sure if I am unused to it. Part of it is I get this feeling like I want to say "don't ******* TOUCH me!" Like it is a control thing.