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The Cycle Moves To Another Stage

I posted my first post here a few weeks ago, talking about how I had become numb to the whole "not getting sex" thing and I was sort of happy about it. Folks in this group gave me some really good advice and I appreciate all of it.

When you're a knucklehead like me, it's nice to get a fresh perspective from new people.

Of course, I spoke too soon and a few days ago my sex drive switched into overdrive. I feel like taking a long weekend in a nice clean hotel room and show myself a darn good time.

That being said, my rock solid resolve to counter refuse turned into something else two nights ago, and I made my first move since before Thanksgiving. Even as I was doing it, I felt like Charlie Brown going to kick the football from Lucy and I wasn't disappointed.

Now I get to move from being ambivalent back to angry.

As it happened, my sister gave me a call last night and engaged me on marriage and how my wife and I never seem to get any alone time. Normally I am very private and defensive of my wife. My family loves her and I have no interest in that changing. But last night I just wasn't in the mood to make excuses and I told my sister that it pretty much didn't matter if we had any time alone. She suggested that she visit and we could go to a hotel and I just had to listen.

In the end, someone trying very hard to help left me more frustrated and angry than I have been in some time. Is this part of this life? Have you all dealt with well meaning folks telling you that if you just offered more non-sexual back rubs, things would be better?

If another person tells me that I need to give her time to herself or validate her as a mother, I swear I'm going to take a hostage.

I hate being that person who listens to good advice and is very quick to say "But that wouldn't work because..." but after nearly a decade I know that cleaning the house and doing the laundry and buying the groceries may put her in a better mood, but it doesn't create sexual desire. At least not for me.

I suppose many of these questions above are rhetorical. This is a cycle because I've been here before. But it's really sad.
harveyspecter harveyspecter 41-45, M 14 Responses Jan 17, 2013

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Ok knucklehead....just give her time to herself or validate her as a mother? *waits anxiously* o.o

*makes a mental note to never EVER say "give her time to herself and validate her as a mother" ... then backs away slowly to prevent the temptation of being taken hostage just in case*

You are the "me" in my marriage. I'm the woman tho. I have much more to say but hard drive crashed yesterday- too much detail to try and write out on iPad!

Don't brand yourself a knucklehead because you reset the cycle. You cannot topple a coke machine with one mighty push. You jolt it, back and forth, back and forth, every cycle tipping it further, until ... crash!

"Have you all dealt with well meaning folks telling you that if you just offered more non-sexual back rubs, things would be better?" --- Not in real life, because I never told anyone apart from jaded therapists, but you will keep running into back-rubbers (pun intended) on ILIASM. Here's a possibly funny story depending on your fun DNA: I think my wife (the arch refuser) finally read some Web pages of the backrub variety around 2007--2008, because she kept requesting me for backrubs, complaining of terrible aches in the back and shoulders. Of course there could have been a genuine medical issue (was never diagnosed though), or she may have been trying to follow the backrub advice to feel frisky, or (I think most likely) she sensed that I had lost it entirely, and was trying to seduce me back. Naturally I needed to take her on faith about medical issues, so, apart from getting her to doctors, I would dutifully agree to give her massages (oil imported from Tibet, no less) almost every evening, but by that time my parrot was long ******* deceased. So most evenings, I would give her a mind-blowing massage. By that time we hardly undressed before each other, but she would largely undress, and she would moan away to glory. And ... I felt nothing but bitterness. So I would leave her kneaded into soft dough and just walk away to wash my hands. My loathing of self and male sexuality was so complete, I did not even need to relieve myself.

I thought I replied to this long ago. What a great anecdote. Thank you so much.

Great post....there are a lot of knuckleheads out there who don't understgand this problems so when you try to discuss it, they can make sense out of it. In this case the things that make sense...don't make sense. Sure, the standard things to deal with the problem have already been tried...and since your wife isn't being reasonable...or human..none of that works. I think it's time that you confronted her family about it. You have to make her unconfortable about making you go through this. Unless you make her deal with this out in the open, she won't change anything.

Interesting. I don't know that I could ever shame her publicly like that, but the thought is sort of liberating.

Harvey, read this gy's profile before you start taking his advice seriously. He is a misogynist with a HUGE axe to grind against women in general.

and you, enna, apparently have a HUGE axe to grind against men...particularly ones who know the story and want to expose women for what they really are.

I totally understand. I need make things MORE easier for him.

uh huh. whatever

wear lingerie = he doesn't like it

bj - he doesn't like it

get on top - hes not into sex

makeup - he doesn't like it or nail polish

don't annoy him? etc etc etc

I totally understand. the only ppl who understand are other victims of sexless marriage.

Sorry. You completely lost me at "bj - he doesn't like it". I kid of course. Thanks for the reply.

haha funny. my hubby wouldn't let me give him one for two years. needless to say that became a BIG desire of mine. too bad for me my hubby is a prude who acts like he's protecting me from his libido.

Your "I swear I am going to take a hostage" comment really made me laugh! I can't tell you how many times that I have thought about serving up the poison mushrooms. Your sister is well meaning, but like many people, she doesn't understand that this is not easily fixed by a back rub or date night or whatever. Hey Harvey, you need to lower your expections of your wife to adjust for reality....expect nothing!

In my case, I have accepted the sexless part is only one part of the dysfunctional aspects of my marriage. Count me as a member of the society of Knuckleheads because I haven't found my way out yet...even though I know I am leaving. I only come to ep when I am reduced to tears which is everyday! Yup, it's really sad!

There are a lot of well-meaning people out there, and thank goodness they can't understand, never having walked in our shoes.

I am almost your age, and it has taken till about now to understand that not everyone in our lives does, or can, understand. We can educate some, if we feel there's a point to it, but we are under no obligation. Sometimes you can just smile and nod and say "thank you", and then walk away.

Your sister is trying to do good by you, and (or) she is meddling, only you can judge. Either way it does nothing to change the reality of your life.

Very good perspective and right on the money. My sister loves me and wants the best for me. I was venting but the fact is that there's no way she could understand and, as you so eloquently stated, I wouldn't want her to.

SMH. The back rub advice strikes again. I wish I could count how many back rubs I've given my husband over the years that didn't even end with a kiss. No. That just won't do. In fact, I had thought of suggesting therapy for my husband and I, but the VERY reason I did not is because I knew already that most of the advice would be about how I could try harder. Yeah. Me. How did I know this? Because every single article, every friend, every family member, every "study" would give the same well meaning useless advice on how the sex deprived partner could do MORE. The truth is, one person can't carry a relationship and one person certainly should have to.
I just shared my story on here a little while ago and it's too soon to say whether or not my marriage can be repaired but right now it's got the best start at repairing that it has in years. After trying everything- even honesty, I decided brutal honesty was the only thing left. We shall see if that works or not. I have made peace with the fact that this could end in divorce. But no back rub in the world is going to work and I know it feels very insulting and offensive to receive such advice.

Iohla, please consider individual counselling for yourself. That is quite different to Couple counselling - and IMO ismuch more likely to be beneficial.

It is going to take you a while to crystalise your thoughts down into the pure truth. That is only going to happen by questioning, debating, and challenging every thought you've ever had about your situation.

That process will take a while.

Meantime, you could do worse than see a lawyer in your jurisdiction to establish how a divorce would shake out for you. If your process of challenging your thinking ends up with a divorce as a viable outcome, you will have a jump start on that process.

As far as how other people - such as your sister - view your circumstances, you will likely find "outsiders" rather unhelpful with their scented candles advice. This is not because they don't mean well, but it DOES mean that they are clueless. As such, the subject is inappropriate to discuss with them. Your mission is NOT to educate your sister - or anyone else - as to what a shithole a sexless marriage is. Your mission is to move forward to an enhanced and fulfilling life. That may, or may not, include your missus.

Tread your own path.

Would anyone feel ok with sharing what seeing a divorce attorney actually would do if you are quite ready to proceed with processing such a decision? I would expect that the law in most states is pretty much cut and dry with respect to divorce proceedings which is my reason for seeking answers. I suppose my point is I am wondering what nuggets of advice that those that have already went down this path learned by speaking with a lawyer. Speaking from my own POV I am not quite ready to proceed with a divorce even though I have resigned myself to understanding that my sexless marriage will never change. I have given up hope and at this point I am just weighing the options. I really like my home and the life I am providing to my children so I am not really looking to uproot this. I have been living it utter loneliness for 13 years so what is another 10 to ensure my kids grow up with me in their lives on a daily basis. Seems like a decent cost vs. reward to me assuming my current plan to re-define my marriage into a simple parenting partnership works out.

I mean absoutely no disrespect I have just seen the go see a lawyer it doesn't hurt line allot and I am truly curious what real benefits performing this preemptive strike of sorts provides in reality. Thanks in advance for any information you are willing to share.

If you are in a dysfunctional marriage your options are few. Stay, or leave.

To make such an important choice you need information, so you can make an INFORMED choice.

You already know what the "staying" choice involves (you've been living it) so you don't need any further information about that. But you do NOT know much about what the "leave" option involves, and you DO need to know that. There could be all sorts of pitfalls / benefits in such a scenario (jurisdiction dependent) and you need to know everything you can to make an INFORMED choice.
Simple example, you may have what appears to be plenty of money in your retirement fund to finance a single life. In some jurisdictions a divorce can mean you forfeit a large amount of that. You need to KNOW. Your spouse may have run up huge joint debt for which you may be held accountable. You need to KNOW.

Seeing a lawyer commits you to precisely nothing. It is not a pre-emptive strike, it is simple common sense, recognising that such a scenario might be one you generate - and a safeguard against your spouse blindsiding you.In many ways it resembles your car insurance. You don't take it out with an intent of stacking your car, you take it out to cover the scenario where your car has been stacked.

With that information and a do-able exit strategy based on it in your pocket, you have created a viable alternative to staying in your dysfunctional marriage.

Will you choose that viable alternative ?

That might be your informed choice. It might not be too. That is your choice.

Thing is, without that viable alternative, you are not playing with a full deck. Without that information you cannot make an INFORMED choice. And it is only INFORMED choice(s) that are going to move you forward.

Demisis, I truly respect the sacrifice you are prepared to make to be with your children. It sounds like you will have a decade or more to do financial planning. A good lawyer/accountant could help you with this

You carry insurance to cover stuff that can happen - and you may never file a claim. You go to the doctor and dentist for checkups, even if you never get sick. You have a plan to escape your house - even if you never experience a fire. You wear your seatbelt even if you never experience a car crash. You engage in a all sorts of risk reducing behaviors on a daily basis - why should being prepared for divorce be seen any differently? You are at risk for divorce so getting informed on the long term repurcussions of stay vs. leave etc., is wise. Besides - you are only married as long as your spouse wishes to remain so. She might petiton for divorce first. Best be prepared for any outcome in these dysfunctional dynamics.

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<p>Harvey i feel your frustration as this is something most here know all to well. I can honestly tell you now that no amount of scented candles, back rubs, vacuming, ironing, mopping, etc will get you any loving from a refusive partner. </P><br />
<p>As i like to say you could perform Saint Like Miracles and you still wont be getting any bedroom action in these types of situations.</P><br />
<p>Frustration aside what consequences have you offered up for her behavour? Other than having a tantrum every now and then have you ever given her something to think about that you will not tolerate this behavour?</P><br />
<p>I suggest perhaps now is the time to total up her bill and present her with the account owing. By this i mean if you support her finacially, emotionally, house chores, whatever stop and let it be known that you will engage her as a husband and provide when she engages you like a wife.</P><br />
<p>Stay Strong & Good Luck</P>

"Have you all dealt with well meaning folks telling you that if you just offered more non-sexual back rubs, things would be better?"


Yes, the first therapist I started going to when I was at the end of my rope and literally losing my mind. By this time, I think deep down I knew I was done with my marriage, but I was too afraid to admit it even to a therapist. My heart sunk when he said, "I don't believe people fall out of love." And it irritated me to no end at his "non-sexual" touching bullshit.

Harvey, we "get" it! We SO get it!!! You are by no means alone in feeling that frustration and I think it is something we have all experienced from well meaning friends and family. If you were a woman, you would also get the "Well, you're lucky your husband leaves you alone!! I wish mine would". AAAAAAAAAAAAAGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

"I know that cleaning the house and doing the laundry and buying the groceries may put her in a better mood, but it doesn't create sexual desire." SO true. Neither do date nights, flowers, jewellry, back rubs, weekends away - or if you are a woman- beautiful lingerie!!

I suggest you tell your sister to log onto this site (ILIASM) and read widely. If she is an intelligent woman, she will very soon see how her perspective is totally WRONG!!