Sexless But Not Without Affection

I am new here. My husband of 13 years is the most kind, wonderful, AFFECTIONATE person I know. He holds me, cuddles with me, gives me gentle kisses, and is there for me when I need him. He just won't/can't have sex with me. Many people on this forum are refused in all ways including affection. I am not one of those people. I guess that's why it complicates my path a bit. Since this journey has encompassed my entire marriage (but not before we were married), I have been through the motions-feeling it was my fault-not pretty enough, not good enough, not skinny enough. After moving through that we started a family (four years into it) and that was with a lot of begging and forced sex-dates so that I could actually get pregnant. Of course, after the baby....what's sex?? All the new excuses set in. So did my feelings of resentment and hurt. Counseling was next. For almost 2 years, we faithfully went, did our hw....we would have the occasional reunion....I would become hopeful. I would convince myself this time it was a new beginning. Then old patterns set in....he was too tired, too overweight, too stressed....any excuse to not be with me....but he would always assure me..."it's not you, it's me." Just when I was ready to leave....a miraculous reunion took place....and another pregnancy. This time would be different, right? 3 years ago....I was ready to leave....done with feeling this way. He lost his job. I felt could I leave? We went on an intensive couples retreat. It helped some. But didn't cure anything. Recently we found a new counselor. My suffering has continued and the lack of sex has gotten worse. Now his mother is sick with cancer. And the cycle continues. I further find myself in this abyss of loneliness. I don't want sex. I don't want affection. I want the physical and emotional connection all in one....I want the passion reignited. I want my husband to want me in a way that no other is ALLOWED to love me. I want him to be able to make that connection. I am tired of crying. I am tired of feeling alone. I am tired of rejection. I am tired of isolation. I am tired of missing what we once had. I am tired of excuses. I am tired of fantasizing about this magical moment that I fear will never return.
nutmeg99 nutmeg99
36-40, F
5 Responses Nov 27, 2012

Wow, I felt like I am reading my own story. I have the same affection, and love..except no sex. I am tired with trying to make it work. Now this time I am trying an altogether different strategy. I gave him an ultimatum. I told him he is responsible to make it work. If he didnt I am going to leave. He has 4 weeks, and he has promised me to do something that would let him have sex with me everyday. I am not holding my breath on that one.but i think we need to give our spouses some responsibility as well. and let them try to make it work for us, because we are trying to make things work for them.

Oh girl, you have written my story. I get plenty of kisses and cuddles, but that's it. The only difference is it hasn't always been this way. No complaints in the sex dept. for 16 years then......WTH. Good luck.

There will always be "somthing" coming up in life to delay / defer hard choices.

Your story really reads like nothing has essentially changed for 13 years. But assorted life events have stymied you doing what you likely ought have done 13 years ago.

These life events are going to keep coming - that is one of the absolute truths in life. Your choices may well, at times, have to consider these life events, but under NO circumstances ought they be allowed to RULE your choices.

Tread your own path.

You story is much like mine and others here. For years I didnt have the affection either and we worked through things and that changed. Then I had the hugs, cuddles, and affirmation of spoken love but no sex. I have done 30 years of the ups and downs you wrote about. I finally had one last talk a week ago and went BEZERK ON THE H!

Things have turned around and I pray its not just reset sex.

Maybe you should try one last time to clearly and concisely explain to your H how this rejection has made you feel. I know by reading here at EP I was able to find the words that could deeply convey my pain and hurt. H has heard me. Things are better.

Thinking and praying for you.

"Reset Sex"!!! That is the BEST phrase to explain it. I have so much to say....I think I will post another story later this week. I have so many thoughts and I am incredibly grateful to have this safe space to share.

Glad you are here and found us nutmeg. I did not coin the phrase 'reset sex' but learned it from this forum which has been enlightening, inspiring, informing, encouraging and best of all EMPOWERING.

I will be watching for your next story.

Interesting term... "reset sex". My marriage isn't quite sexless... but our sex life is pretty pathetic in most ways. I've been watching my wife's behavior, and it is really interesting to me... She is generally really disinterested in sex... EXCEPT when she feels the emotional distance in our relationship increasing... and then she'll somehow turn on her interest in sex and approach me sexually to get me back closer emotionally. She is using sex to restore the emotional relationship... to "reset" it. Interesting. Thanks for sharing...

you are stuck in not wanting to be the "bad guy" in ending this.

It is like a bandaid that noone wants to quickly remove. Instead picking at the edges, pulling slowly, tugging and hurting at every hair, then reapplying the edges out of fear...

Just pull the damn bandaid off and move on... you are digging yourself an ever deeper hole.

Start by going to the lawyer's - first visit is often free. See how a divorce would shake out for you. Start plannin in your head. Make a new reality for yourself.

You are NOT responsible for your spouse's entire LIFE, particularly as the marriage is OVER..