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Musings On Marriage Counseling - And An Intimacy Averse Spouse Is Born

First, many have commented here before, and now I see it clearly as well, that marriage counselors cannot bring back something in a marriage that was not there in the first place.

When I first started marriage counseling, I wanted to bring back some intimacy, but quickly realized that would not happen.  Then I had hoped to  improve communication and work together as a team.  But see, here is the rub.  He and I never, in our eight years of marriage, communicated together about money, division of responsibility, plans for our future, ....none of that.  Early this morning he tells me we need to start talking to each other.

I told him that it is too late.  I just need to get back to work full time and he needs to accept that I am the breadwinner and head of the household.  Someone has to put food on the table, I told him.  "But I have enough money to get us through March", he said. 

Geez, is that supposed to comfort me?

Then he goes through the tirade of the past, how I spend too much on this that and the other thing.  And I said, "I cannot do anything about the past.  If it makes you feel better, I will leave you alone now in your office to wallow in the past as it seems to be your focus.  I need to do something to get us out of this mess, as I am the only one who really can."

He knows now that I have given up.  I do not want sex from him, but he bothers me for it and I cave.  He talks "up" about his business and nowadays I let his babbling go in one ear and out the other.  I don't want it.  Everything I had hoped for in this marriage, I do not want to bother trying for it any more.  And now, although I am not a refuser, I do what I can to avoid sex with him.  Change clothes in the other room, make sure our daughter is around, be busy with job applications, tell him I am waiting for a headhunter phone call, whatever it takes.  Maybe because in the back of my mind I know that this sudden spike in sexual interest is desperation behavior on his part.

I told him as long as the drinking is under control, I have no intention of leaving him. That I love him like family.  Maybe we can be good friends.  One day.  That is the most I can hope for.

I feel sorry for him.  He continually throws up now, and I told him he has to go to the doctor.  Pretty sure he has an ulcer, like I did in 2011. 
EinEngel EinEngel 46-50, F 6 Responses Dec 5, 2012

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Intresting read. Your situation is a tough one. If you truly dont want sex with him i think you should stop caving in cause you caving in gives him false hope and makes it harder for him to detach from you.

Perhaps you need to get some legal advice on how a divorce will pan out for you. As i read it you are emotionally checked out and it might not be too long before you decide he is no good as a roomate either.

Stay Strong & Good Luck

Dear engel, I have lived what you are going through now. <<<>>> is all I can offer you. Stay strong and know you are worth more than this, and know you cannot lift him up higher than he is willing to lift himself. Your job with him is done. Concentrate on you and your child. I hope you get that job soon. ANother <<>>>>

In between the <<>>> were HUGS that got deleted somehow

So your first paragraph cause me to wonder what was the something that was present in your marriage in the first place, if it wasn't intimacy.

Hun, you're a bigger person than me. I don't think I'd be sticking around to work myself to the bone to financially enable drinking behavior, just to keep the harmony and a father figure for my kid.It's just beyond my personal limits, and the deed is bigger than who I am as person.

He has gotten the drinking under control. But I do not know for how long this will last.

EE, as long as he's not drinking and you are impressed with his parenting of your daughter, sounds like your chosen path is one you're at peace (mostly) with. while this us going on, focus on you, and your daughter. good luck in the job search. and who knows? once employed full time, confidence & esteem levels rising, your choices may evolve. keep a close eye on your little one, listen carefully to what she says & doesn't say--there are clues to how the ongoing atmosphere will be affecting her. best--xo

Appears that you are holding the cards at the moment.

It is only a short step to opening the marriage (really, what alternative does he have) and your ticket to do what you like, with whom, where you like.

OTOH, you cede any "right" to tell him what to do too. If he chooses to get hammered all the time now, that's his choice and it is not down to you to have any say in as a wife. Of course if this drinking starts to impact upon the harmony of the house then, as a room mate your are entitled to room make protestations about this behaviour. If it starts to impact (further) on kinder Engel, then you are entitled to raise hell - as a co-parent.

But the spousal considerations are no more.

You might be able to spin this "open marriage" deal out to March next year (when he runs out of money) but you'd do well to have an exit strategy in the bag by then. By March, it is quite possible that his performance as 'room mate' is not going to be up to par, and just as likely that his perfornmance as 'co-parent' won't be real good either.

Given that you have made him irrelevant as a husband, if he blows any value he has as a room mate, trashes his value as a co-parent, then he has pretty much made himself completely disposable. The ball of choice will be squarely back with you at that point.

Tread your own path.