Do any of you in ILIASM think that your partner's don't engage because they are so afraid of getting hurt?  That they are unable to take down all the emotional barriers they have put up over many years, and just take a chance of love, and enjoy whatever happens?
My partner has had a number of very significant hurts in his life and I wonder if that has affected how he feels now about love.
Yes Baz, I'm having a lapse, and I'm "why chasing" again.  Don't slap me please buddy!
Photo credit to "When Snow White Drifted".
SolitaireDiamond SolitaireDiamond
51-55, F
17 Responses Aug 20, 2014

Yes, absolutely. My husband grew up with a narsicisstic/borderline personality mother and this has significantly hampered his ability to connect emotionally with anyone. It's sad. Tragic really, because I know he longs to have normal and deep emotional connections with people. Especially our daughter. Therapy and medication has helped somewhat, but not enough.

It's true though, that at some point you have to look at what is healthy for you, and stop catering to your spouse's weaknesses. He is responsible for fixing himself, and if he is unable to do so, you need to decide if you can live your life with him in his current state, with NO expectation of improvement. I have endless compassion for my husband, but I need to have a bit more for myself.

Yes. Its a coping mechanism. Probably one that they picked up during a tumultuous childhood. So they shut down that part of themselves to avoid getting hurt. And the fear of changing outweighs keeping the status quo, however unpleasant it may be and however unhappy it makes you.
Sit with that.
They aint never changing… I'm only reiterating to you the broken record that keeps playing in my mind. The one I keep wanting to sound different everytime I put it on the turn table…Sadly. And btw nice pic.

But Solitaire did I read correct, you've only been with this man for 2 years?

Yes Jane. We have been together for two years, but not married.

Nope, just developed a case of asexuality.

My wife definitely has a wall up that she won't let anyone behind. Why it's there and what's behind it, I may never know.

That must be very difficult to deal with. Obviously painful for her, but so hard for you to be stonewalled like that ... permanently shut out :o(

It is entirely possible that a refusers "why" is "fear of getting hurt".
That is as legitimate a "why" as any other floated in here.
Pre-supposing that you do not habitually behave toward your spouse in a hurtful way, there is nothing you can do about this "why". It ain't your problem, its your spouses.
Tread your own path.

I know Baz, and no I would never knowingly cause anyone hurt or pain, especially not my partner.

There you go then.
Nothing further you can do.
Same as if his "why" was something else.

Nope - they are getting satisfied elsewhere

Oh, sorry to hear that :o(

No, they have a problem admitting they are be an a**. My husband is in the refuser recovery category and he now openly admits he was an a**. He doesn't just admit it to me, but to anyone who asks about how our marriage is doing. He'll explain how much of an a** he used to be and how he's turning things around.

Of course, they have to recognize that their behavior is wrong before realizing they are being an a**. Many refusers see nothing wrong with their behavior and that's the problem.

So has his admission actually motivated him towards any personal growth and becoming less of an ***?

Yes. Once he understood it was wrong, the only thing left to do was change it. He stopped justifying his behavior and took responsibility for it.

It's been over 9 years for me. Tell me more

It is a good question you ask. But for me the answer doesn't matter anymore. We all, you, me, enter into marriage with the expectation that this is about love. It is true each of us receive love in different ways but does it make us wrong if we receive through physical contact? Who is more wrong, more unfaithful, the one that desires to give love and receive love this way, or the one that says your wrong and I won't do that? Where does that leave you? Can you live with it? That is up to you and either way you choose I wish you the very best.

Thanks for your honest, upfront comments. The truth is, I truly don't know how much longer I can wait for him to "come right", like he says he's going to. I've shared two years of my life with him, I love him, probably more than anyone I've ever shared a relationship with ... but my self esteem and confidence are plummeting. Sexless relationships are soul destroying and heartbreaking. I'm a very sensual and sexual person, and no, I don't believe I can cope with this "long term". When enough is enough, I'm not sure about that either right now.

Well, at least your smarter than I am. I used just about my entire life trying to fix it, to bring her around when the truth is that she just doesn't care for it and it doesn't mean anything to her. If your oil and he's water then your going to have a hard time mixing it up.

I agree with you ash. To be honest I feel so fortunate to have found EP and ILIASM or I may have been in a much worse emotional state without all the knowledge I've gained through my extensive reading and communications with other ILIASM peeps. I would still, no doubt, be trying to solve the problem of the sexless relationship, instead of knowing very positively that the sex and emotional intimacy aversion are his issues, not mine.

I truly believe that with the exception of a medically diagnosed ailment most Refusers are either Cheating, Narcissists, use sex as a power play, or bartering tool.

Now regardless of which of the above you are saddled with it still does not change the predicament you are faced with at home.

The only one that can change the status quo is us so to speak, by choosing not to tolerate the Refusers foul behavour.

Personally i dont buy into afraid of the emotional hurt theory.

Stay Strong & Good Luck

My husband destroyed anything that said power play, he destroyed my right of refusal, he Did not arbitrarlly take his marital rights. he waited until I was in a position of embarrassment, Then dared any one to do anything about it and anyone that stepped forward in the last year was put in their place especially me. MY husband was hurt emotionally, but he turned his emotional hurt into rage and cunning.

Have you ever listened to Brene Brown? Check out her TED talks if you can. Very relevant to your thoughts.

But yes, I think this was an issue for my ex. He's terrified to let himself connect.

Thanks for the reference liltree. I will certainly follow that up, much appreciated!

No, mine is very open with her feelings and I have to admit she is trying to give me what she thinks I want. It just all seems so half hearted.

That is so difficult isn't it. To know that you're making love to someone passionately, who is doing the same with you is such an empowering, loving thing to do. When your partner is passive and disinterested, no sex is often better than bad sex :o(

Yup. I am coming to that realization too. Get my hopes up and then it all seems to pathetic to continue. Grrrrrrr.

<p>i just think mine i s probably a *** and needs to walk out of the ******* closet!</p>

Ohhhh, that's sad for you, and also sad for himself that he's not brave enough to be the real him. Can you look to leaving him and moving on with your life, or do you have children to consider?

i left 8 months ago

Good for you. I hope things are starting to settle down for you, and you can move on feeling much happier in yourself.


1 More Response

Yep. Too emotionally damaged to engage emotionally. Absolutely. But so? I have come to believe this is no different than someone with an addiction who doesn't want help. If they are so emotionally damaged but don't see it and refuse to accept psychological intervention, what good does that do?

Ooooo sorry - not meaning to slap. Feeling sorry for him for 12 years got me absolutely nowhere. Being understanding, also nowhere. It's good to identify the problem, but that doesn't mean the solution is at hand. I ran out of sympathy.

A lot of the refused are the way I used to be: They have far more compassion for their refusers than they have for themselves. Instead of being infinitely patient, the refused need to hold their refusers accountable for what they are doing.

Sad but true. I was there for 12 years but boy when I hit the wall, I hit it hard. Then the anger & resentment set in. Whether you realize it or not you feel you waited patiently all that time for him or her to "heal" and they let you know YOU are the only one broken, they are FINE but thank you. Yeah....the anger can be blinding at that point.

Yes, I think this is/was the core problem my stbx has/had.

I think it's possible. I know he has felt bad about himself because of our unhappy sex life.

And I do feel compassion for him. BUT, I have given him opportunities to change things for the better - or at least to show me that he is serious about changing for the better. And I'm starting to wonder just how far I will have to go to make him do something.

Or - if nothing I do could goad him into doing his part to repair the relationship.

Apparently, SmartKat, he hasn't felt bad enough to get help.....


Amen. In my case.

No, I don't think that is why my refuser rejected me. Even if it had been, however, unless he was willing to address his intimacy problem, knowing the reason for his rejection wouldn't have helped me at all except to know that after I dumped him, I should make sure my next lover lacked that kind of baggage.