Saying One Thing...doing Another

So, I've been married for nearly 20 yrs. We both got married young. For the first year our sex life was normal. After that, he went into the military. After that, we went for about 9 yrs. without sex. At 30, I begged for a baby....cut to a couple year later, we finally have the baby. Now our baby's 4 & no sex since we got pregnant. In summary, there has been very little intimacy within our marriage. He holds my hand, always kisses me goodnight & goodbye, calls me sweetheart, but has rarely initiated sex (although I've NEVER turned him down). He was recently diagnosed with a low testosterone, which can decrease libido, but surely that's not been the problem the whole 20 years. I've brought it up in the past, he says he loves me as a wife, wants to have sex, then nothing. For full disclosure, the only time I've ever initiated was during the time we were trying to get pregnant. I take care of everything day-to-day (household, finances, dr. appts, etc.--I usually make the decisions), I told him I was just old fashioned when it comes to intimacy, I want him to initiate...he doesn't. During the time we were trying to get pregnant & I initiated, he complied but moaned & groaned about being tired. It's always been very generic & unemotional, he acts like he's just getting a job done.
So, recently I found pornographic website on his computer as well as an internet sex chat site (where girls set up webcams in their house)...I don't know what all has went on there. He works out of town every week with overnight stays.
In every way (except intimacy) he is a great, attentive husband & wonderful father. He says he loves me & seems to in every way (buys me anything I want, calls several times a day, tells me he loves me, kisses me, holds my hand, etc) except sexual intimacy. He seems to have no desire for me at all.
Any outside perspective would be greatly appreciated. I am getting to the point where I'm resentful & starting to feel like I've wasted 20 years. He gets the intimacy he wants (hand holding, kisses, etc...along with whatever he is doing on the internet), however my intimacy needs don't seem to matter.
Does this sound like he's cheating? I am a christian woman who took my vows seriously & I do have a child who adores her father to consider, however, if this is a no hope marriage I need to start waking up.
Please do not post mean stuff as this was really hard to write.
An Ep User An EP User
7 Responses Jan 17, 2013

<p>He might be cheating, that is one conclusion you could draw from what you write.<br />
He might simply prefer **** and jacking off (as per enna's reply below). That is equally possible.</p><p>I would suggest that you look beyond those things to the main game - he is intimacy averse to you - that seems the key issue.</p><p>Whether that is due to low testosterone, having an affair, preferring ****, being gay or any one of a number of imaginative reasons refusive spouses put up, he is intimacy averse to you. And, that, is a matter over which you have no control whatsoever.</p><p>Whether his 'reasons' are legitimate or bogus, credible or bullshit, truth or lies, medical or not, pyschological or not, it is HIS issue. And HIS issue alone to attempt to do something about, or not. You've been married 20 years, and thus far, he chooses "not".</p><p>It is entirely your call if this is a "no hope marriage". The evidence you provide certainly points that way though. What standard of proof do you require to make that call ?</p><p>If this stays as is, is it a dealbreaker for you ?</p><p>Tread your own path.</p>

Bazzar, Thank you for reading my post. You are right, it is his call. One of the things I need to work through is in his eyes am I the refuser.? Throughout our marriage I have been the more (mentally) dominant one. I make all household decisions (he just works &amp; does the chores I specifically have to tell him to do). Truthfully, I don't ask for sex, as I stated I have always told him I prefer he be the one to initiate (as in ONE area of our life I would like to have the pressure/decision making off of me---but maybe that is also because I have never felt secure enough to initiate with him). When we were trying to conceive, that was the only time I initiated, he complied without argument but without enthusiasm either....that kind of tells me that if I were to initiate at other times he would comply out of a sense of duty rather than enjoyment. I just want to be clear that I'm not on hear telling my story one-sided, surely if I've told him my preference (more than once, he knows &amp; didn't argue the point) of him initiating, &amp; have NEVER turned him down when he initiated but responded with enthusiasm...surely I cannot be perceived as a refuser also.?
Truthfully, I would like proof of an affair (private investigator), I could easily walk away then (although I would be mad that he took so much of my time away from a future partner). Whether it is a dealbreaker as it is right now (no proof of affair, intimacy aversion, ****, etc.), that is still something I am trying to work through. I do have a plan though, I will take the next several months to create a exit plan (talk to attorney, investigator, financial overview, etc.) while reading &amp; posting on here &amp; talking things though with a therapist (I find that helps me to get my head on straight).
I appreciate your response to my story, it is very helpful information &amp; again..things I need to hear to keep me going strong in seeking out the truth &amp; making a permanent decision for me &amp; my daughter. :)

oops, meant to say *here instead of *hear. :)

**** is one person sex. So is ************. Many sexless marriages have a spouse who only wants one person sex. It allows them to enjoy the release and pleasure of sex by themselves, without requiring them to be a connected and intimate PARTNER.

These people have a fear of intimacy. TYour spouse may not be having an affair - he may have a fear of intimacy.

"Sexlessness and Fear of Intimacy" is a story of mine that you may find helpful.

Thank you. It was a really insightful story you posted. There could be some truth in it for my husband. For years he wouldn't argue with me for fear I would leave him!!! I've been with him 20 years, &amp; what I'm considering leaving him because of has nothing to do with arguing with him....quite the's the lack of communication/lack of intimacy within the marriage. I really don't know what else to do. He is in denial about whatever his reasons are &amp; despite numerous conversations (mostly one-sided, he just continues to assert a sexual desire for me...then nothing. I don't know how else to bring it up/approach the subject with someone who is unwilling to communicate or even try to fix it. Feel like I'm just banging my head against the wall. When is the point where you say "I tried, enough is enough."?
Thanks, Enna...on the website that darkwaterlady gave me, it talks about avoidants---I will look into this further. Appreciate your response. :)

Oops, meant redwaterlady. :)

Some wise person once stated here about their spouse

"I can't hear what you're saying, your actions keep drowning out your words!"

Talk is cheap, watch what a man does, not what he says.

Love that!
I wonder how telling it is, that although I love him (as my daughters father/friend/family), if he came to me tomorrow &amp; said he wanted a divorce I would feel....relieved. I don't think I would be upset, except to the point that it took him 20 yrs to get to that conclusion &amp; I would've rather it happened sooner (you know: while I was younger, perkier, thinner, etc. lol). I am more sad about the "dream" I had of us, versus what actually is. I could walk away without any drama, why am I so concerned with his feelings? Both of his parents are deceased, he is alone except for me &amp; his daughter. I know he is dependent on me, according to his co-workers me &amp; his daughter is all he talks about. However, I am getting more convinced that behind closed doors he is leading another life. I am trying to plan &amp; work things out before I decide to leave. But I am a pretty literal person: if I am happy/sad/angry/etc. it is usually written all over my face &amp; actions----it is starting to be repulsive to me to hold hands/kiss him. I am starting to emotionally detach, which I think is a safety mechanism to help me eventually leave. I also find myself on here constantly reading other stories &amp; encouragement, looking @ online resources, etc.---again I think as a safety mechanism to give me knowledge &amp; strength to facilitate leaving.
I am looking forward to talking things through with a therapist, to help get my head on straight &amp; say the words verbally that I am realizing are true.

Thanks to all who are replying. Your posts & resources (websites) given are helping me tremendously. For 20 years I have NEVER admitted this problem to anyone (except my husband)...not friends, therapists, family, etc. To write it on here was scary because I am an intensely private person but liberating as saying the words allowed me to hear 3rd part perspectives who are not emotionally involved & can give me incredible insight into my situation. Admitting my marriage problem wasn't easy, probably because once you admit something you have to start the path of what you are going to do about it. Again, I thank everyone who has read my post & responded. I am very thankful to any feedback given. It helps just to hear the words/thoughts that have lingered in the back of my mind for years finally see the light of day through the members on here.

don't know what to tell you. its hard. although in my marriage I'm the one more likely to watch **** than him haha, alone of course

it could be **** addiction, or maybe he just a madonna/***** complex. sex is for mistresses and family time is for wife and kidz?

Yes, I have thought about the addiction, &amp; even the madonna complex. Especially because outside of the bedroom he will hug &amp; kiss me (peck on the lips) before bed, when he is leaving for work, etc. He holds my hand when we are out. But that's it. Most of our marriage I have felt like a family member or close friend to him. I'm really mad &amp; resentful that he has been so selfish that he's denied me finding someone who could love me fully, as a husband &amp; wife I have chose to believe him when he says he desires me (even though his reactions have never shown that). Thanks so much for replying. I need to hear these revelations from third party people who can see it without the emotional fog I am in.

trust me I know.

Awww, sweetie, he's cheating.... Sounds like he has been for awhile. His reaction is pretty typical--acting like you're the crazy one. As to "how far" he's going with any of the things you've found, ..... the likelihood that he isn't going as far as there is to go is small. Given how manipulative you see him to be, I can only assume there is much more that you are not finding.

Would you be comfortable hiring an investigator?

For your daughter--he can still be a good father to her, even if you divorce him. That's his choice to make.

Yes, he is a great father &amp; adores his daughter. I can't imagine that changing. It does break my heart for her though. I feel bad that within all other areas we are compatible &amp; for one area (intimacy) I am leading down a path to divorce &amp; breaking up her family....However, isn't that what he has essentially did with his hidden extracurricular activities.? Why do I feel sorry for everyone (my daughter/my husband) if I leave, &amp; not feel concerned enough about me to feel better about leaving.? Staying is becoming increasingly difficult though...I find myself raising my voice (which is not who I am), getting mad @ little things, &amp; just wanting to plain slap him....I've literally had to sit on my hands &amp; bite my lip when he's talking (just about mundane argument or anything) to keep from being physically violent with him! I am getting so resentful. Surely that is more harm to my daughter than keeping her family together under one roof?.
Thanks for responding to my post. Yes, I have thought about hiring an investigator. Just because I want to know, have the peace of mind that he really made choices that validates my leaving.

A site I found really good for when my affectionate sexless marriage was about to implode because of **** is

yourbrainonporn dot com

It didnt solve eveything wrong with our marriage, but it helped me understand what was going on for him, and helped him heal from this addiction.

At one point, you have to decide on healthy boundaries in your marriage. And, you cannot make another person change, we are all born with free will. Stand up for your God given right to have sexual relations in your marriage, and realize he has not honored his vows to you, to your community, or to God.

I cannot thank you enough for posting your advice. It is something I need to hear, as I am just starting to really evaluate my situation. It has taken me a long time, I have always gave him the benefit of the doubt &amp; listened to his words &amp; actions outside the bedroom (which are near perfect) instead of looking at his actions outside the bedroom. I posted so I could get feedback (like yours) that tells me I'm not crazy for believing something is missing &amp; wrong in my marriage. He is a master manipulator @ looking @ me like I'm crazy whenever I've brought it up (which I have several times). I have even toyed with the idea that maybe it's my fault for wanting to be approached first (like I said, outside the bedroom I am a very dominant, independent woman...but inside the bedroom I want to be approached)....I have told him this more than once &amp; have never turned him down, but responded with enthusiasm,on the rare occasions when he approached me so I don't know what would/could be his problem with that. Not only the **** site worries me but the webcam site that allows online chat....I wonder how far he goes with this? Especially since he works out of town w/ overnight stays. I probably will never know, unless I catch him red handed I doubt he would fess up (it's not like he has been forthcoming so far). One additional note, he has frequented a ***** club &amp; a "happy ending" massage parlor....where he swears it was all by "accident" &amp; "nothing happened." He told me about these incidents but I wonder if he just did that to cover his bases, unless he was seen by someone he knows. (the massage parlor is well known by everyone I could imagine in the community, it's been shut down numerous times by the government, but a guy who's lived here all his life evidently didn't "know" that &amp; went in for an "innocent massage?" He is also into online gaming where I know he talks to people all over the world. Am I crazy here? Is there writing "all over the wall" &amp; I'm just too blind to see it? Thanks again, I took a minute to look over that website you suggested &amp; plan to look it over does have a lot of good information. Any other advise/information you come upon would be greatly appreciated. Thanks again &amp; God bless. :)

Ooo my. Red flags everywhere. Another good site is outofthefog. Good luck, keep reading posts here.

Thanks so much. I will definitely check it out. I appreciate the internet resources as this just gives me more clarity! :) Thanks again.

Is that outofthefog site from a guy named Barry Rice in Hendersonville,TN? Wanted to make sure cause when I went there it is under construction. If that sounds right to you I will keep checking back on the site. Thx.

Not sure about Barry... But its outofthefog dot net, it is support and info for people that live with someone who has a personality disorder.

Oh thanks. i was doing .com
will try the dot net
Thx, you're a wealth of knowledge! :)

Just passing along what I've learned from the great folks at ILIASM!

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