Sexless Marriage 11years, Husband Loves Me Dearly, Makes It Impossible For Me To Leave..

I am married to my husband for last 11years. He is the kindest, most loving caring, affectionate husband in the world. But we just dont have sex. He doesnt have the desire. He doesnt refuse me anymore, but I have to initiate all that. makes me crazy because I have always been an attractive woman, and never imagined myself ever having to beg for sex, and there is no dearth of potential sex partners. Yet, I am holding on to the moral high ground, and I dont cheat or have any affairs. I cant leave him because if I threaten to leave him he begs, pleads and tries to bribe me. He is the best husband otherwise, in that he works 6days a week 10hrs a day, and comes back home cooks, cleans does dishes, takes care of our baby, gives me backrubs if I need, just bring me tea in the bed, lunch on the couch, and cooks delicious dinners. All his money is deposited in our joint account and I can shop do anything I want. I am in total control of the finances. He has even told me to have sex with whomever I feel like, until he fixes himself.
He finds me very attractive, and cant do enough for me. he loves to snuggle cuddle touch be playful. He loves me a lot and I love him a lot in an affectionate way.But without that passion and attraction and his lack of libido and my lack of attraction towards him has made it very awkward to have sex. I just imagine myself being very sad in the future. I have thought of leaving him, and marrying a real guy who I can have sex with. We have a child together, and I cant imagine a better father than him. I am stuck between choosing a comfortable life for me and my child marrying a man with who I can have sex with.
But there is too much to lose, I have my husband's trust, all the freedom in the world, he dotes over me. I have refused to be the lesser person and be dishonest with him or cheat him.( which wont be necessary because I have his permission anyway). The easiest thing probably would be to have a friend with benefits. But I really dont want to be emotionally attached somewhere else, and take away from my marriage. Does anyone think that me actually having sex outside would take the pressure off my marriage, and it will be easier for me to just accept that? Even if I have 1 ****** a year with terrific sex (I dont care if i can have real terrific mindblowing sex just one time a year), I will call myself happy!! Does anyone think it is immoral for me to do so? I havent done it since I got married.
Thanks.
uma1980 uma1980
31-35, F
16 Responses Nov 28, 2012

YOU already mention that you don't want to be "emotionally attached somewhere else" and this is precisely what will develop into from a single sexual encounter with another. You may say now, no one can take me away from son and hubby, what is there not to drop the hubby and take the son away. It is possible for you to be "taken away from your marriage".

"You actually having sex outside would not take the pressure off your marriage", but only icrease pressure, increase the degree of comparisons between the new sex provider ( who will be extra nice for the free sex, he is getting) and your hubby. Sex (axe) would be the wedge that will split and separate.

You believe that all of your sexual deprivation is accomplished with "1 ****** a year with terrific sex".? It is as good as fooling self that "real terrific mind blowing sex just one time" will solve........... but it will not.

Your solution is in your hubby's hands. Your efforts in drawing him into the moods of your early marriage years, setting the moods and bringing back joy of sex amongst the two will be better than the single annual ****** got elsewhere. Work out of this "troubling" scenario than inviting additional trouble.

Thanks a lot for that advice. I already do realize that. I am learning a lot about what I want, to do, all my stories are ,the next step of my thought process.

Please could you read my last story http://www.experienceproject.com/stories/Live-In-A-Sexless-Marriage/2764755
Its about where I am now. I have tried to help hubby a lot and am committed to helping him but with a time limit.
We did not have sex from the beginning of the marriage. So there was really no falling back on any moods. Its a weird story but its all out there, in the rest of the stories.
I want to be happy and I have in a way decided to be proactive in seeking real happiness.

<p>&nbsp;<p>3)I now kind of see that my current relationship isnt going to get any better, and 10-20yrs down the line I am going to end up being a very sad soul.. I just now see the inevitability of that..<br />
<br />
4) I am willing to start new friendships, test waters, smile a little and laugh a little..<br />
<br />
5) I am going to be discrete because it would only be kind..<br />
<br />
6)I am willing to take it to the next step make the plunge if it gets there..<br />
<br />
7) I want to come to a new relationship happy, not sad from the past and current..</p><p>I want to be able to come into a new relationship with all the positives I have to offer..not the sadness that I need to fill.. Can somebody Please shed some light on how I can do that?<br />
<br />
8). I cannot really see myself divorcing my husband yet, I am not there yet. I have to take it one step at a time and my actions need to be compassionate towards him and myself..</p><p></p>

STOP trying to rush! You need top process this - no-one can give you an answer to these things. You need to work through it all, process it, understand that this is NOT something where you can simply jump to right answers.

Personally I think your FWB strategy is very unlikely to be successful - please consider carefully before taking that route.

I can only say how I did this. For me, I couldn't go the 'outsource' route. I had to finish before starting again.

The reality is that people often have casual sex and move on. There's nothing wrong with this, but if you're fresh out of a sexless marriage and searching for intimacy, this can cause pain - the people you have sex with don't mean to hurt you, what they're doing is just normal. If you come from a sexless marriage though, sex means more to you than to most others.

In general, having sex is how you find a sexual partner. If all goes well, you also begin to get to know your partner. You talk more and more about personal things. If you're on this board, it's likely you'll be very open to talking about your feelings, intimacy, desires, love even... There's a lot of people also looking for the same kind of things, probably not the majority, but a significant minority. However, you shouldn't feel that sexual relationships that don't always automtically lead to potential life partnerships are always empty, assymmetric or abusive. They are what they are. They're normal. They're how you get to where you want to go.

The reality is that you're dating again, with all the heartbreak, hope and possibilities that this entails. It won't be perfect, it'll probably hurt at times, but you're alive again. And if you're lucky, this time you'll find someone to love and be loved by. For me, it was worth trying again.

My FWB strategy is not necessarily going to get me a life partner/soul mate. But it will get the ball of happiness rolling, I will start feeling like a woman again, It will take the pressure off my marriage, It will atleast temporarily make me more happy.
If I am hurt I can go to my husband and he will be there to support me, since he is my best friend. I can tell him everything and he will still not judge me, in his books he will take care of me forever whether I am married to him or not. I can't in my case first leave my husband because he would never let that happen. Unless I have somebody that I can say really loves me and would take care of me my husband isnt going to just leave me or divorce me like that. He has the outmost concern for him. Thats why I am in this jam. Because he values me too much, he cares for me too much, he loves me too much, if I were to ever get in an accident and get disfigured or were to go in a coma or whatever my husband will be there on my side taking care of me. He wouldnt think twice if he had to change my diapers..So I cant just kick him to the curb like that..I do have too much to lose that way..Plus my daughter, she needs a stable home, a two parent family..I cannot imagine a better father then him...
But I need to have a little happiness too..Maybe a kiss by a trusted friend, maybe more..I am not ready to just leave my husband like that because I love him in a certain way too..If I were to leave I would want to make sure that my husband has all the support maybe another spouse or whatever lined up..But he has already said that if I left him he would never marry again, and I believe him.. His world is just me and his daughter. thats it. he doesnt have much of a social life..I have way too much compassion for him..

I'm torn here, I have no idea about your life or your position...

But believe me when I say that 14 months ago I could well have written something similar to what you have just written. However, draw no conclusions from that, it's just a flat statement - no more.

1 More Response

Please somebody tell me how do I make peace with my reality.. To be in constant hope and struggle that things will change, to keep trying all the time is tiring, exhausting..what do I need to know to say Yes this is my truth, make peace with it.. I dont want to make life changes because I am angry or hurt.. I want to make life changes because I have adequately come to term with my truth and made peace with it before I move on..
I really need somebody to shake me up...

You're still fairly young. If there are sexual issues now, chances are, those issues will only worsen as time goes on.

I agree with you wanting to make peace with your life changes. There's no good reason to make a radical decision without having made peace with the path you've chosen to take.

Thanks for backing me up on this..I really need to meet my own nirvana first before I find it in another relationship..

You may not wish to hear this but your story is a CLASSIC first time story. You protest that "All is wonderful bar the sex" - a saying which we ILIASMers recognise as understandable, but actually INaccurate.

You have "told" yourself this for a long time, with the urgent need to convince yourself of its truth. This has been done unconsciously, so when it is queried, you will feel indignant that you are not being believed.

But as you read more here (and I encourage you to read, read, read here!) and discuss your story with others, you will uncover the sad truth. A "wonderful" man does not treat his spouse as your's treats you. Real genuine love of the highest sort would say something like: "I love you so much and therefore I want you to be truly happy. If you cannot be truly happy with what we have, then I must let you go to find that elsewhere."

The main problem you have is a very common one - he sees "sex" as the "sex act" and is not very interested in that. You see "sex" as the "sex act" PLUS intimacy, connection, passion, etc. etc. etc. So even if you DO get to have more sex with him, it is unlikely to prove very satisfying.

If you are considering the FWB route, I encourage you to read my story "Outsourcing Your Needs".

I will be reading more stories as I go along.
I really do need to emphasize that my husband is a Very Good Man.
He does not have the confidence to please a partner sexually.
He never had a girlfriend in his life.
I am the first woman in his life.
His parents were always the dominant force.
It doesnt help either that he was sexually abused as a child.
He was rejected by many many girls before me.
He tries to do everything in his ability to please me.
It doesnt help that he has low self esteem, and even lower self image.
One of the reasons we could never really enjoy it was one that I was never really attracted to him.
He doesnt know how to perform a sex act with confidence and he also probably feels it is ikky in some way.
The reason I have to emphasize this because my husband is the kindest man I have met.
He is somewhat of an asexual, but not a bad person.
And thats why I have stayed so long.

My dear Ex is a very similar sort of person. A truly GOOD man. And they have many aspects in common - from reading your list. I of all people understand why you have stayed. I stayed twenty two years.

Has your husband looked into counseling to overcome his self esteem issues? It will take a few years, but, it will help out a lot. A good bunch of what you just wrote also would have applied to me quite a few years ago. I've been in counseling to resolve those issue, which has been a tremendous help for me.

The issue regarding the lack of attraction on your part likely will not go away. As he ages, that attraction likely will diminish. There is no easy answer to this one.

Thanks for offering advice that really does fit with where I am right now. I think at this point DH is ready to do whatever it takes including counselling , testosterone therapy, or whatever it takes. He knows I will be with him for at the most 4 weeks and he wants to make a change. I hope that happens..
I am never really going to be attracted to him but atleast the hole in my heart will be greatly diminished, and I may be able to manage my life, without all that anguish, just with a little dose or happiness here and there..

I can relate to your attraction issues with your husband. I have similar issues with my wife. Might I ask if the attraction issue is caused by his lack of self confidence? Or is it more of a lack of physical attraction?

2 More Responses

3)I have decided to open myself to friendship first, just be open to meet a lot of people.
I will be gone for an extended overseas trip for more then 6months. That could be the start of my new life, new air to breathe, newer opportunities to smile..

After reading a lot of insightful stories and comments and questions posed by the most thoughtful people on here, I think I know 2 things:

1) No casual sex.
2) Dont try to confine myself in too much 'morality' because it is not helping anybody.
Its better to be Kind than Honest.. Its better to be Happy first.. before you can give it to someone else.

You are being paid not to have sex, h tries hard to compensate you for this lack of intimacy. Tea and back rubs are not close substitutes for sex, as you are finding out. Let him know that and perhaps he can try and fix the actual problem rather than bribe you with short-term solutions.

Yes. I am giving him the next 4 weeks he wants to fix it, putting the ball in his court. After that I am going on an extended business overseas trip. If he cant fix anything in the next 4 weeks, I am personally off the moral hook to try to fix it.
I am looking forward to be physically in a different spot, so I can leave all the hurt behind and just open myself up for new opportunities, new friendships, and who know possibly new love..

Whatever your decision, even if its doing nothing, you are making a choice. No one gets to pass on choice and each choice carries its consequences and pain.

I think after reading so many insightful and authentic comments,
1)I realize that casual sex would not be the right option for me. It would make me feel too empty at the end.

Yesterday, after a big explosion on my part, all of a sudden he started to cry and act all crazy (wait I am the one who is sad and upset, what are you crying about?)
Anyway after a major back and forth (meaning I was angry and he was crying and pleading --the usual)

He wrote and signed a piece of paper that said,
1)I can have sex with whoever I want to until he can fix himself.
2)He promised to do something major that would make him have sex with me everyday! (I am not holding my breathe on that one).
3)If he didnt go through with that, and we were to go through divorce then he will give me 65% of his income in alimony and child support.
4)In addition to that, he will transfer profits/income on his part of the business(with his dad) to the 1st $5 Mil asap to me if a divorce were to happen.
I was like "what the heck DH?"
Oh yeah and right after that, my husband says, "My dear why dont you get yourself the EXPENSIVE handbag, will make you feel better. Oh yeah and all the tummy tucks and mommy makeovers you wanted to do.."

And I go thats not the same thing as sex DH!

The answer to that was, "why dont you just call that broker right now and get that waterfront condo that you always wanted to get!!"

I dont even know what to think of this !!

This was so hilarious and sad and funny and weird all at the same time!!

Quite often, the refusers are in pain too, and know full well that there's this enormous elephant. And usually, the refused are in more pain, so take action sooner. My guess is, he does love you in his own way, perhaps a lot, and knows that that is unlikely to be enough for you. His "solutions" are obviously missing the point for you.

Perhaps you could figure what you want a bit more, what's important to you. I've heard of a some people who've managed the complexities involved in an affair, and after all, this is hardly underhand or dishonest. You do not need to be obvious about it, that would be cruel.

Being crass about it, it sounds like you'd get a handsome wedge of cash regardless, so perhaps some reflection on what you have together in other respects, and what you want out of life, would help you. Could you discuss this with a therapist individually?

Now, in Black Jack terms, you have insurance. The ball is definitely in your court. How much of a return on your investment is enough? Its all still in the credits and debits domain.

What you are saying is so real. I am still thinking about your insightful comment.

Well if I cash out right here, what are my future investments going to look like?
Thats the uncertainty. I just dont have other options lined up, because to try to line them up while still being married seemed to me like a moral transgresssion.
Maybe now that I am officially off the moral hook and if i tried to test the waters, see whats out there..?
Would that be too selfish?

Lao has great wisdom (like his name-sake!) and his evaluation of you "ledger" mind-set seems very accurate. I encourage you to recognise that your LIFE is worth much more than figures . . . . .

2 More Responses

You have everything you want from your husband except his desire for you. You know the score and confess you are not attracted to him. He has co-dependency issues and you want the comfort and security that being married to your spouse garners.

You'd outsource to fulfill your need for sex and desire but you don't want attachment in case it shifts your ambivalence towards your spouse towards cognitive dissonance which would put pressure on you to leave, thereby placing your current sweet lifestyle in jeopardy. What I see in you is someone who wants everything while hoping not to pay its measure in pain. All choices have their measure of responsibility and pain.

Yes. Very accurate assessment. But for the record, I didnt always have this lifestyle. I married DH when he was penniless still working on his phd. I used to work my butt off 6am to 11pm ,work work work, to sustain us and to support my mom with her stage 3 cancer. And I had to shell out $40,000 off my own pocket within one year for her treatment.
At that time I all I was thinking was how can I make DH finish his phd , get on his feet and emerge and how can I keep my mom alive and still have food on the table.
I Have paid my dues. I am way too invested into this.

And there you have your answer - you are invested in this. When we use the balanced ledger model to assess our lives, we are more likely to stay because we view everything in terms of credits and debits.

Love, intimacy, trust, lust and passion - ardor is greater than the sum of its parts - it is not an equation, no percentage nor fraction nor decimal points are involved. They are gifts in which the mutual giving and receiving adds to both and facilitates pair bonding. Be well.

Your comments are the single most real in terms to how our brains manage our lives.
I have put my sweat and blood in creating and building our lives together. There is way too much to lose, even the wad of cash after divorce is not justifying it.
Honesty, trust, caring, affection, compassion, being there for each other, encouraging each other, believing in each other, pushing each other for success.. I have each and every positive emotion in the book present in our marriage. except for passion, lust, sex, feeling like a woman, and /or feeling like I am alive...

You are actually right. I really do need to get out of the "credit and debit" "moral" shackles. What you are saying does need a measure of courage though and also a good measure of hard work too..all over again...thats the scary part....

1 More Response

I'm afraid I stopped on the "just" word, which had been preceded by the litany of how wonderful and loving your husband was.

Such a little thing that you don't have, which is why you're posting here. So loving that he is not helping you be satisfied in one of the joys of life to a sex-person. And let's be clear, this ain't to do with sex/*******.

If it helps, you have my permission to do whatever you want.

The world of love and relationships is so full of uncertainty. I dont want to go the casual sex route. I dont want to leave the marriage unless I know that there will be a soul mate. If I find a soul mate, (who I am not looking for right now), but if I did, I will leave everything with the drop of a hat.. i think..

I don't suppose the casual sex route is what you want, from what you've said. It concerns me though, that you're busy constructing yourself a Catch 22 proposition here with this mythical "soul mate". Perhaps you could consider whether your current life is actually nourishing you yourself, or is it harming you. You can be integral and strong in yourself, and that's a much better place to be coming from when entering intimate relationships than relying on them.

Where I am right now is nourishing and it makes me strong, all the challenges that I have faced, all the hard work I have put to create a life and business, with all the trust, belief , and encouragement that my husband put into me, made me a strong empowered woman. I am very stable, there is no drama in my life. I am in control over every aspect of my life except this one and neither has control over it. We are both well meaning. I have a lot to give. Except, I would like to be a little girl, feel the wind in my hair, let go, and love without care, and let somebody else take care of me for once..

You can be integral and strong in yourself, and that's a much better place to be coming from when entering intimate relationships than relying on them.

Really such an awesome thought.

Because of all of you, on the forum it makes it so much easier not to go out there being emotionally "needy". Who I pick as a stronger person will be a much more healthier choice then who I pick as an emotionally "needy" person.

2 More Responses

Try to put some responsibility on him.
he could care less if you put it off on him, don't be surprised he is oblivious to it all.


Let him know how miserable I am.
he doesn't care


Give him an ultimatum.
only give an ultimate, unless you are prepared to use it.

Give him points if he tries to make advances.
points are useless


Give him extra points if he says lets have sex.
he may give you sex but it wont be for points, it will be to
hook you back into his web of deceit.

And a bonus if he can follow through.
and if he cant then he has to keep doing all the housework.
sounds like he was already doing the house work with out you giving out points etc


Take away together vacations.
that wont make him give you the sex life you dream of having.

Go on outings on my own.
he has told you to do so already ... id go for it, you need to start having a life for ur self,
he has the life he wants,

Get permission in writing.
Have fun.

Yes he gave me that permission in writing. As far as having fun, doesnt casual sex make you feel empty afterwards, and if you fall in love with someone doesnt that necessarily take away from the marriage?

Don't do it. I've had sex with 2 men.1 is my husband. I had a boyfriend for 8 months and we both stayed virgins, but I moved on to the one who became my first. I left him after 3 years and called my ex because I didn't want to be alone. We talked it out and had sex 3 times a day for 3 months, several condoms broke so we stopped using them. Something was missing, the physical pleasure was great but I missed the pleasure of love. I felt satisfied and empty all at once. I couldn't make myself love him. I cared for him and that was all. My first called me and I reluctantly went to him, I feared what would happen because I couldn't say no to him (I loved him), but I didn't want to cheat on my lover. He didn't make a move on me. I can't believe that I was the one to make a move, he rejected me, what did he keep calling me for? He changed his mind and made love to me. The physical pleasure wasn't much, but I have love ******* that mean more to me than anything. I never let my lover do anything but kiss my neck and penetrate, very basic. I let my first do everything because he begged for it all. I still don't approve all the time of what he wants to do, but he's allowed. He's my husband now and I can't think of anyone else I want to be with. I miss my ex, but not for the sex. I know 2 beautiful souls and it's hard for me. I must never mention my ex, but I wish we could be friends. We ARE friends, but only in spirit.

You have a wonderful husband. If he doesn't deny you then I don't see why you'd ever want to give him up. You want to feel he's attracted to you and have him aroused by you I understand. My husband is impotent. His erections are too soft for me to feel him, but I love him and would never put him down. This is probably why he begs to perform oral sex on me. He is 22 years older than me . We're currently separated and have been for a year. I haven't been with anyone else, I learned that horrible emptiness already, I don't want that again.

Despite being a classic avoident refuser, he appears to be hopelessly co-dependent on you and intends to stay married to you no matter what.

That is going to be a two edged sword on your way forward. If it turns out that your truth leads you toward the exit, you can bank on a magnificent and sustained exhibition of leg clinging, threats to kill himself and other such nonsense.

If your path lead you to demand an open marriage where you screwed who you like, when you liked, where you liked, I would bet good money that he would wear that humiliation too. Anything, as long as you don't leave.

You, it would seem, are free to do what you like. The morality of what you end up choosing to do YOU supply - no-one else, YOU.

Tread your own path.

What you are saying is the truth. Thats exactly how it is. Right now I am busy with the rest of my world, but maybe 10-20yrs from now, I fear I am going to be much sad and lonely. The morality is not going to help anybody then...

These are the few things I am willing to try i the future:

1) Try to put some responsibility on him.
Let him know how miserable I am.
Give him an ultimatum.
Give him points if he tries to make advances.
Give him extra points if he says lets have sex.
And a bonus if he can follow through.
and if he cant then he has to keep doing all the housework.
Take away together vacations.
Go on outings on my own.
Stuff like that. i have not done this but I think I am going to give it a try.

What I have tried so far, is to be gentle and nice to him, take responsibility for everything, try to be nice all the time. So he has pretty much got a free pass so far with no responsibilty.

Scrub that idea of an ultimatum - unless you are prepared to go through with it.

Agreed! Ultimatums are just that - ultimatums. YOU have to be prepared to carry out your end if he fails to carry out his. If you are only threatening with no actual intent, you simply damage things further IMO.