I have been in a sexless relationship/marriage for 16 years.

The morning after our wedding, I woke up sobbing. Did I know then that it was a mistake? Perhaps. Though I've never really thought of it as a "mistake." He is a good man; I am a better person for having grown up with him.

There has never been any predictable frequency to our sex life. Except, I suppose, when we tried 28 times/months just to get pregnant. Oddly enough, that experience didn't break us. Nor was it much fun.

Other than that, we go, on average, 1.5 - 2 years without sex/intimacy. WTF? I don't get it. And I want it. I want that feeling of skin on skin, sweaty, breathless £>#%ing.

We had a difficult, yet calm conversation about this "topic" a few weeks ago. A few days later, broke the sexless streak of more than a year and a half.

And now here I am, I find myself angry, hurt, hopeless. I don't expect anything to change.

A week ago, I slept with another man. ((It was amazing. Left me wanting more. All the time. Everyday. Now.)) And, no, no guilt on my part. And no expectations for more. If it happens, it happens.

I'm not prepared to leave. Though I worry that I am squandering the best years of my life. I worry what menopause will bring. I don't want to regret not loving-living more; truly, madly, deeply, and passionately.

WTF?! Now what?
TrulyMadlyDeeply38 TrulyMadlyDeeply38
41-45, F
4 Responses Dec 29, 2012

Totally agree with the no guilt part!!!

It's an odd feeling. I'm not an unkind person; I generally put myself in the shoes of others... but I can't feel bad about something that feels so good.

I can only imagine of what H's reaction would be if he knew. I can imagine it's about as bad as I felt late last year. I was rather despondent, had no hope whatsoever.

Never what to feel like that again.

I have told myself if I cheated I would probably feel guiltless like that....

"He is a good man; I am a better person for having grown up with him." --- I say the same thing about my wife, and it is the #1 reason I am still in the marriage. And not just in the past, but I see scope for even further self-improvement in future. Of someone that has diminished or denied perhaps the most intense male pleasure of life, this is a somewhat remarkable thing to say, and it does make life more challenging.

I read some of your posts. To be honest, I see a bit of myself in your spouse. I am challenging, have high expectations, and have, in the past, been incredibly inconsiderate to my husband. In recent years, I have come to value him as my best friend, and rely on him in ways I never thought I would -- and I don't think that's a bad thing. I have tried hard to respect him and be kind, to hold my tongue. And even more truth: I was the refuser for many years. I feel that I bear the responsibility for where we are today. A few years ago, I made a huge effort to turn things around. And when I stopped initiating, so did our intimacy. Sigh. Such a tangled web. (At least that's what it feels like.)

Well, yeah, some things match, some don't, business as usual. I guess people do fall in love, or think they do, with the coach that leads them to Olympic medals. On the wrong side of 40, I don't find "mutual self-improvement" a suitable foundation of marriage. Sometimes (most of the time?) when you come home you want shelter from the world and comfort in one person, not a trigger for introspection into what you could do better.

What are your reasons for staying in your marriage? I don't know what I expected to find when I joined this site/board, but it's a wee bit depressing... Seems like for most, divorce is the only/best option. But until recently, leaving just didn't come to mind. Perhaps because a SM is my normal? Even though that veneer is wearing thin. I crave "connection" deeply.

You know that your life is going to remain the same as it is now. There is no evidence (from this story) that your husband has any genuine desire to increase the frequency of your sex life despite having taken part in your recent serious talk.

You also know that you are VERY much happier when you can have sexual contact with a man who desires you.

What you say ("I'm not prepared to leave") does not reflect the content of the rest of your story - so WHY are you so sure that you won't leave? You are "angry, hurt, hopeless" and you "worry that I am squandering the best years of my life . . . worry what menopause will bring. I don't want to regret not loving-living more; truly, madly, deeply, and passionately." All of these statements suggest that you are increasingly unhappy in your current existence and aware that your tolerance for the existing situation is wearing very thin . . . .

Seriously challenge that statement about not leaving. You may find it is not the wisest choice for you.

Just to add: Menopause increased my desire for regular sex - and others on this forum have had a similar experience. Don't count on menopause to reduce your level of desire - it may not happen!!

"Prepared" is the key word. I haven't thought of leaving in about 10 years (which was before kids, and given that we are still in the same place, for the most part, I do think I should have done it then; would have been much less complicated).

I'm not sure that I *won't* leave. But it would be impulsive of me to do it right now. I am still formulating my thoughts and how to discuss it with him. In fairness, he did initiate the other night. I "refused." I'm feeling rather raw and angry. And I want to talk about things first because I cannot handle a brief reprieve (yay, we have sex for a bit and then another dry spell for a year or more), only to find ourselves back where we always seem to be.

Thank you for a bit of reassurance re: menopause! I plan to gather more information as to what is ahead, physically/biologically. :)

Well, you ARE squandering 'some' years (tho not necessarily "the best of your life" - except in 'potential' - which isn't worth jack ****).

Real question seems to be how many more years (generally) you are going to squander with the dude before moving on to an enhanced life. THESE enhanced living years WILL be the "best of your life", whenever they occur. They are there, waiting for you.

Tread your own path.