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Feeling So Alone With You

(I apologize for the stream of thought writing, but with my poor writing skills and the emotions this topic push to the surface, this is the best I could do.)

I am currently sitting 10 feet away from my wife, watching her knit and hold my daughter, two of the most beautiful people I have ever known.It used to be me over there, cuddling her, loving her. But that seems to be over. Just like the dog went to the back yard when I met her, so it seems I ended up on the recliner when my baby was born.Don't get me wrong, I don't have any problems with my daughter and wife's relationship. My wife is quite possibly one of the most loving parent's I have ever seen and my daughter is the most beautiful and special contribution I have ever given this world. I just can't understand how there isn't enough room for me on that couch, philosophically speaking.

The first few months after she was born I thought it was something I wasn't providing, and I suppose deep down I do still. I thought it was the sympathy weight I gained during pregnancy, so I lost all of that and a bit more for good measure. Maybe I haven't been giving her enough attention, having been loving enough, so I make a point of telling her how much I love her, how much she means to me, taking her out for a nice meal when we could afford it, more attempts at a hug and a kiss. All that happened was more rejection, including the dreaded "I'm over this hug" pat on the back.

Then summer came, requiring me to go out into the field for work. I did as I have a tendency to do and buried my head in my work, telling myself that it was all for the family. I spent nearly a solid three months in the field, working untold hours (usually a minimum 14 hour day) seeing my wife and daughter sporadically throughout. When I would see my wife I would feel missed, but rarely would I even receive an uninhibited hug. I missed them both dearly, especially my daughter, but the pain of rejection numbed my yearning to be home.

My wife has started to warm up to me a bit since I have been home. I had a fairly serious melt down about the situation, explaining to her that no sex and no intimacy just isn't sustainable for a long term relationship and that we need to figure something out if we are going to last as husband and wife. I explained to her that I love her and my daughter dearly, that the last thing I would ever want is to be away from them, but the feeling of being with her and alone was more depressing to me than the thought of being alone by myself. She told me that this is all very normal, that she has been talking to friends on one of her internet chat groups of women who recently had children and that many of them were having many of the same issues. I explained to her that I can understand that but it just will not work for the long term. A few days later she had sex with me. I was happy to have the affection, but a big part of me feels like it was done out of necessity, not desire. Is that just resentment talking?

So here I am, still sitting in this chair, hating the coldness I receive when I'm on the couch. Sometimes I fantasize about what it would be like to be free from this loneliness, but the fear of not being able to be a regular father to my daughter and knowing that I really do love my wife and she loves me keep me here. Whats a guy to do?
freeinternetcounselling freeinternetcounselling 26-30, M 9 Responses Dec 24, 2012

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If her internet chat group happens to be babycenter (it is the most popular one), tell her to check out the marriage & relationships board there. They will most certainly tell her that this is a problem. In fact, it was someone there who referred me to this group.

Did your wife have a higher libido before the baby was born? What is the age of your baby? Is your wife breastfeeding? I breastfed both of my children for one year each, and it destroyed my libido! It's nature's way of preventing another pregnancy until the baby is weaned.

Many parents have their babies sleep with them in the same bed or have the baby in a bassinet next to the bed. Whatever works for them. I could not sleep unless my baby was in another room, because I'm a very light sleeper and every whimper or movement would wake me up. It sounds like your wife is a firm believer in "attachment parenting" which means that she may want your daughter sleeping with with her for a couple years! (sorry)

My husband could have written the same thing as you about 20 years ago, except that he has never wanted affection/cuddling, just sex. He was pretty unhappy with our infrequent sex during the kid's early years, but I'm glad that he was patient during that time and other low-libido times. (peri-menopause, pms days, etc) Now that I'm in menopause, I have a higher sex drive than him!

My point (finally!) is that a woman's sex drive changes over the course of her life depending on hormone levels, and as long as your wife still loves you, patience and open-communication is needed at this time.

Yes, she did. 15 months. Yes. When is weaning normal?

My daughter does sleep in the same bed with us, she has her own bed next to ours that my wife says she puts her in when I'm sleeping, so I wouldn't know it. I honestly don't think she really does, save the first two or three nights after we had a serious talk about it, I have not once woken up in the middle of the night to find my daughter anywhere but in the grips of my wife. I don't know if I can deal with another couple of years of this.

My wife throws her leg over my leg sometimes, and while it is nice to have her their sometimes I just makes me resent the fact that I feel like she uses our daughter as a human sex shield. I'm still really hopeful that this will end. I get seasonal depression as well, so when winter comes I feel like I'm choking in a cocoon of sadness/loneliness. I shouldn't expect her to help lift my spirits, but at times, isn't that what she should at least try to do?

I'm trying to be patient, but I feel like it's fading fast. I just have to keep reminding myself that I love her and she loves me, and the sun will come out, the depression will go away and hopefully when she weans she will turn back into the loving, emotionally and sexually expressive woman I married.

"15 months. Yes. When is weaning normal?"

There is no "normal" weaning age, it depends on many factors. Have you read information about "attachment parenting" since it appears that that is your wife's parenting style?

My kids were born at a time when the attachment parenting stuff was just becoming popular. I wasn't a fan. I truly believe that the parent's marriage is number one priority in a family. Of course this is after the baby's basic needs are met. I didn't neglect my kids by weaning them at 12 months or by making them sleep in their own rooms; I believed that our already negatively affected sex-life would take a bigger hit if a child was sleeping with us. I would let my daughter climb into bed with us after a bad dream or in the morning, but she knew that she was to start off in her own bedroom.

Your wife's extreme mommy/ parenting style is making you feel left out, and I honestly don't know how you two can meet half-way. Wish I could help in some way.

Best of luck and good wishes to you!

My best friend, a woman, had a husband like this and after 22 years, when the kids were raised, she finally left, broken hearted, and she's been happier since she found affection elsewhere. I am so sorry you are going through this. I'm single and I dated a recently divorced guy a while ago - everything about him was great, we got on really well, I couldn't understand why his wife let him go. Then he kissed me. He came at me with the most awful technique you could ever imagine - I'd never been kissed tongue-first before. I broke up with him that night. His wife of 25 years had never told him his kisses were awful. I'm sure it's not the same with you, but I think you might have a conversation about how things are for her. You might find there's a simple thing you can correct and make things better. But if not, if it's nothing to do with you and she's just a low-libido person, you have one question to ask yourself, as my friend did. Can I live like this for the rest of my life? Tough decisions with no easy answer.

It's an awful cliché but you never know what you miss until it is gone and too many people find themselves in that position without realising it. Life, it's very self, cannot be taken for granted or anything else associated with it. That is a mistake that too many of us make.

I too join the same band wagon of Lonely Lots may be you term them right As "Virgin Hubby"
I have 2 kids with the second joining an year back and the fight the loneliness has been immense just missing getting into an emotional affair around with someone who spares the time for me to avoid the loneliness. I have struggled 7 long years of marriage almost 3 yrs maternity & care included and the rest 4 yrs struggling to build an intimate relationship which just remains a shooting star far off..... I sit and ponder today and everyday does a marriage be so painful of being lonely and a fear that this will push me into an extramarital fling... I have been a dad of kids who just miss me every moment they are away and long to find me with them playing around... but i cant interpret whats been my wife's mind... is it just a momentary relationship or a long lived... ?????

I know that feeling of rejection, the 'I'm through with this hug' and the resentment. It is no small feeling, I think, must be a reaction in the old, reptilian, brain because sometimes it brings an an immediate, colossal, hurt and anger like Conan the Barbarian pulling his sword, ready to fight. Unfortunately, there seems to be no safe way to react without causing a major argument, which is the opposite of what you wanted to happen, so it usually just gets buried. So I am always aware of the need to honestly drop the resentment so I don't add another obstacle between me and the woman I really love. Good luck

How do you drop the resentment? I've been trying, but then I find myself lashing out like a neglected child looking for some sort of emotional stimuli. I feel guilty for doing it, I am trying to drop the rather be hated than ignored mentality. I think it is the biggest obstacle to us from my side

I agree it is adding another obstacle. I think that is the only reason I keep from resenting her. Maybe that is one difference, at least keep the resentment from being personal, resenting 'her' non-action while still resenting the fact that you are somehow supposed to live in this painful situation. I do know that, as I have read others stories and research myy own situation , I have found that some of my reactions did just complicate things. There are so many variations of this problem on this forum that it seems a wonder that any of us succeed in untangling the situation. Many times, I think it really takes an outside mediator.

A difficult situation indeed. It has been proposed by behavioral scientist that it is quite common for women to have a dramatic change of relationship focus following the arrival of children on the scene. (Perhaps this is the case in your relationship.) That is to say women frequently identify with their role as nurturer, and caretaker far more than the role of spouse and lover. If that is the case then the noise is in your head and may well be resolved with a little counseling and dating. If however, your situation is one where she just has zero libido, and is refusing all approaches my heart goes out to you. I am 58 and in a sexless marriage. and it beyond sucks! As you mention the loneliness, isolation and disrepair of being an object as opposed to an object of desire vexes the spirit and soul. I find myself slipping (daily) ever more close to leaving. This is in some ways easier for me as we don't have children in the house and there will be no custody issues or fears a separation will damage the children. We are here for you and many, many of us are living a similar reality.

I recommend you do not consider bringing another child into this mix.

I wish I had an answer for you. I can't tell you that it's going to get better. It's been over 5 years since my daughter was born and I am still off the bottom of my wife's priority list. I know what you mean when you say it would be easier to be alone and lonely than lying right next to her and still be lonely and rejected. I'm still struggling with the decision to stay and be miserable or leave and break up my kids' home.

I still hold hope for more emotional availability once my daughter moves into her own bed full time. That will be the real test of our marriage. I still feel like she fights tooth and nail to keep my daughter from being more independent, but I don't fully trust that it isn't me pushing my own insecurities about our relationship. When do kids tend to start sleeping in their own beds normally? Is their even a "normal"?

Most parents I know (my x-wife and I included) have their babies sleeping in their own bed pretty much right out of the starting gate. Yes, sleep gets interrupted because they need attention a few times through the night but as long as they get held and not ignored all day, they do fine.

I'm not picking up on how old she is. And I think it matters. But you're right to talk about it. This isn't about the baby sleeping in the bed either. That's a parenting choice that you can find a work around to if you want to.

She is in her mid 20's, I'm in my late 20's. First marriage and child for both of us. I know it isn't about that, but that is the current excuse.

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