Experience Project iOS Android Apps | Download EP for your Mobile Device

Perhaps An Insight Into the Guy's Problem...

All of the stories here are all too familiar. What's frustrating is that they all reflect a fundamental change in the relationship early on in a marriage...which fortunately, is something I might be able to help out with. Many guys get married before they really understand what it is to PARTNER with someone. I'm not talking about the same-sex "partner", but the real joining and combining of lives that is absolutely necessary in a marriage. This kind of change takes a lot of courage to enter into - if you're not ready or aware of it. What typically happens is that within the first few years, the couple who has previously been on individual paths and decided to get married, now finds that they are having to be on the same path - and that means compromise, a lot of it. For many people, that kind of change becomes associated with a loss of the self. I had wanted to be a police officer, but my wife convinced me that a dangerous career was going to cause us problems together, so I gave that up. I no longer regret that, but it took time. The same went for her having to give up living in a big city to live a more suburban life to follow my job. In all of that, you can start losing your personal identity. Sex is an expression of identity, of the self, and it's best when you aren't thinking about change, aren't worried about bills, responsibilities, or whether or not the sheets you just purchased represent an emasculation. Married sex has baggage just like all sex does - but it's different baggage. For men, the loss of independence in life can be a bedroom killer. If they don't feel in control of their destiny any more, and they blame that on you, then why would they feel sexual? They don't . I'm not saying this is good, or that anyone should just lay down and never change. What I'm saying is that it's everyone's responsibility to recognize that change and compromise MAKE and DEFINE marriage. You don't stay married for 13 years without fights and disruptions, and you don't weather those times without compromises both big and small. The problem, then, is to remember that your sexuality, virility, and "manliness" is not an expression of your individuality or independence as much as it is two people in love sharing that moment, or just scratching an itch. For the guy, however, if effort is no longer being put into sex, if his partner isn't "showing off" as much, or both have become less-attractive to each other as a result of "relaxing" - you're no longer dating, so you don't have to try as hard, yeah? No. But that's a common pitfall. What can really help is to help your husband find and clarify the parts of his life that are still absolutely his - how he dresses, his routines, how he works out, what his job is, whatever... - and then show him how absolutely essential he is to the functioning of your family (with or without kids), then he can start building a solid sense of self and individuality within the context of the marriage partnership. We're babies for life, most of us, and we need to be told a lot of things to make us feel good about ourselves - not that we're pretty, but that we're strong, capable, your hero, and all of that. Once we lose the feeling of being the hero in the relationship, it's hard to get that back, and it's doubly hard to recover from it. Hope this helps. Good Luck
TheTreeIsMe TheTreeIsMe 36-40, M 100 Responses Feb 13, 2007

Your Response


Amazingly insightful! I'm not sure I got it all the first time thru. How can I file this away for future reference?

Wow, your analysis was spot on for my experience. While dating, my husband's sexual appetites were voracious, and he loved to spend at least an hour with very intense foreplay. With marriage, his appetites diminished seriously and eventually pretty much disappeared. The few times we did get intimate, he could not achieve a full erection. Refused counseling, etc., saying he knew it would get better eventually. I put it off to his relationship with his highly manipulative mother, subconsciously transferring his defenses to her now to his wife. In every other respect he was a great husband, and I developed a deep attachment to my Wahl vibrator! But our lives became more independent, even separate vacations.

And then: 25 years later and out of the blue, HE decided that we should be doing more things together, including reinvigorating our sex lives. By this time I had rearranged my life to not need him. I resented his snapping his fingers for sex when he was ready and the thought was a big turn-off for me. Until...

While seething with resentment, I happened to come across the Taken In Hand web site, a place for committed married folks who enjoyed husband-dominant relationships. At first (feminist that I am) I was disgusted-- intellectually. But there was something powerful reacting in my libido to these stories. I let the concept steep for about a week until finally, with incredible anxiety, I confessed to my husband that I was drawn to the idea of surrender to his masculine authority, and shared the site with him.

I thought he would think me disturbed or sick. Not at all. He immediately embraced the concept 100%, after asking me many times if I was really really sure. Indeed I was. Our sexual relationship has been red-hot since then for both of us, and the passion has brightened every aspect of our lives, It's crazy, isn't it?

My friends would be aghast at my submission, but what I've found is that now that he is totally in control in our relationship I have given up nothing. He now makes decisions for me and us with my best interests at heart first. Where he might have resented my going away on a weekend retreat with a girlfriend, he now encourages me when he feels it is good for me. He carries my photo on his cell for the first time ever. Emotional walls have come tumbling down.

I'm convinced that joining in marriage to me -- a marriage of equals-- made him put up walls and be subconsciously defensive of the demands of the need to capitulate to the needs of the female: especially with the manipulative Mom history. Once the marriage was not of equals, but with him in a dominant role to my submission-- with equity of value -- EVERYTHING changed.

Not for everyone.

But I've never been happier, and even at age 61 never had such a vibrant and satisfying sex life. Wish it had happened years ago.

You must be the webmaster for that website. Great commercial, doubt this is true.

Silly you. The web site is UK based, I think. It's kinda dormant now. A more active community including the same theme is at, less skeevy than this site here but very real. And oh yeah, every single word is true. But I don't blame you for doubting me. I keep pinching myself to make sure I'm not dreaming. And I'm writing this after ...gosh, a year from when I wrote this previous post. Better than ever.

Would you please define "skeevy" for this American?

Hey, I'm an American too, it's just my made up word for ... I don't know, this site is more into sex in a way that's kinda party-play kinky stuff. Skeevy! I'm more into living the life 24/7. Real life total power exchange, submissive to a dominant man with discipline, living this way at all times, every day, no exceptions.

OK...I get your meaning. But it strikes me as a little snobby. Like these peoples lives aren't serious because they aren't as "non-skeevy" as you. And, by the way if you have never been happier in your 61 years, why does your profile say you are 41-45?

Ha! When I first signed up here, ages ago, I distorted my profile for two reasons: one, absolute anonymity (I just celebrated my 104 birthday on Facebook, by the way) . Second, because I sense that older women are not taken seriously. Oh shut up, you know it's true. ;-)

I'm sure it sounds a little snobby. I'm very judgmental. Play acting has it's place, and that's fine, but it personally doesn't fit my nature. I'd feel like an idiot pretending. I don't need to insult people who have different outlooks and preferences, I'm just not personally interested in .... skeevy. But I'm a pretty much live-and-let-live type.

3 More Responses

When he has killed the love you had for him, sex is the last thing you want with him. Some women will take the easy way out and cheat, but what about the woman who refuses to cheat (be the dog), and can no longer gain employment because no body will hire her....makes it a little difficult to leave, right! These bastard men need to burn where the sun does not shine....but no, this society supports this treatment of women, hell this country will exploit the child, build the mans self confidence and tear down his childs all in one stroke!

<p>N2troubleagain are right in what you said below:</p><p>"Just because two people get married doesn't mean you have to lose your identity for the sake of marriage. It is that identity that each partner had fallen in love with in the beginning."</p><p>So, why after they marry, and the baby comes along, do the men try to take away and change the very things they were attracted to, and try to change and control the woman/wife? Does something better, more attractive come along and they want their cake and eat it 2?</p> Take a working, woman with her own goals, and make a housewife/ mother out of her. No job/income renders her dependent on him. Right. And why do the bastards hide their selfishness until she has taken his last name and had the baby.

My wife banned sex 27 years ago. "All men are animals" including me. I stayed in the hope she would change but she hasn't. OK we manage to get along without fighting but the "Love" has gone so far as I am concerned.

"Many guys get married before they really understand what it is to PARTNER with someone."
TheTreeIsMe, nothing that you have said is particular to "men".

It's a common pattern for anyone is a partnership - man, woman, straight or gay.

There is nothing that can possibly prepare anyone for the kind of partnership that marriage entails *over the long run*, except marriage.

That's a good story Trees, and I like the insights. Personally I don't think a man and woman need each other enough anymore. We come together with the physical attraction, but later on it's only the kids keeping you together. Beyond that, well, I'm not at that stage yet...

Please stop reading this. I was an idiot. The **** wrong in my marriage is my ****. I'm an unfit husband blaming other things on my failures. No one is responsible for anything to do with our lives other than ourselves. I wrote this post 6 years ago. Why the hell is anyone still reading it. It's idiotic.

No one is responsible, sure - but in a relationship, you are not just responsible for yourself, but also your significant other. It's not about "needing" things from your partner, but it sure has hell helps a lot. People are people, we all get in downers now and again and i helps when your partner can remind you who you really are. I don't need for my wife to tell me I am caring, intelligent and charismatic - but in times when i feel and think of my self as a piece of ****, it helps a LOT. Don't **** on what you said because of peoples negative responses. You know yourself and your **** well enough to hold an opinion and view.

Maybe if you edit the post with the information in your update, it will quell any further comments.

The fact that so many are responding to your post may be because some of us find some real truth in it, even if your own thoughts have changed. I can't comment on your fitness as a husband, and I hope you're in a better place. I found your comments to be profound. I agree that we are responsible for ourselves, and hope that you were able to make changes that restored your sense of being her hero.

I actually think it's quite spot on. I'm sorry 6 years (7 now i suppose) has changed things so much for you. It's not idiotic, maybe it no longer applies to your situation but it certainly does make other members think about their situations.
Reading your story here has actually made me think a little from my hubby's perspective. I guess I have been emasculating the dude a bit. Something to think about :)

I'm confused, Tree. Are you disavowing your original post from 2007?

2 More Responses

they are looking at you as the problem we are running a legal check right now...

Its just sex, its suppose to be fun if its not fun then there is a problem. if it turns in to this be fight over sex every day all day long then there is a problem. if one partner does not have relations with his wife or husband for over 2-5 months a year there is a problem. my male friend needs sex and he needs too feel alive again can you imagine a 46 year old hot looking man who can have anyone he wants has become awkward and shy towards other women....the marriage is not good and he has too do something outsource or leave.

Maybe sez has become too intellectualized..... After all.... It's just feels good, it's fun, what's the big deal?

Wearing The Pants--he will not make anyone feel safe if he is feeling rejected.

look...i need a true lover not a platonic male in my life....i have those...we eat together we laugh we platonically hug and head lover is my lover and i will do anything too make the time wherever it is too be with him...that's the way it suppose too go in life....there is nothing wrong if you do not want sex but do not expect the other too feel the same way...everyone has different needs we cannot control sexual needs --

When you're hot, you're hot. When you're not, your not

my new lover and I will treat each other the way lovers are suppose too be... you just poured your heart out In your previous message and your answer too that now is when your hot, your hot when you not your not?

Oh no no, please do not mistake. Just from what you had said made me think of what someone else once told me before. I just found it interesting and wanted to share. Not to dumb down or conflict what I had typed previous.

When I first started dating my wife, she was so obsessed with me. I couldn't be out hanging with my family without getting constant texts from her - it was overwhelming and insane. And yet I felt extremely important to her (a hero, as you put it), and found myself wanting to be with her more - in some strange fashion. It fueled my ego and let me know that I was "doing good." Just before we got married I had her come to terms with her co-depentantness and now she doesn't communicate anything of that sort anymore - the clinginess is gone. She has become a self reliant individual and yet separated into her own world. I feel like I've done good as a husband and boyfriend in the sense that I've challenged her and supported her growth as a person. She doesn't need people to make her happy now, she does that on her own. She doesn't need to keep an constant eye on me, she knows I'd never stop loving her or ever leave her. Yet I'm now at a loss of if I'm "doing it right" anymore. She communicates nothing to me (relaxed relationship) and everything from our texting to sex to dating to ANYTHING is gone. I don't get the sense of "hero" anymore. I feel like the overused toy that has become boring now. And this has killed for me, every ounce of passion and interest. It is hard to even think of a sexual encounter now. Everything I've compromised and have given up - my identity - is long gone. And the partner who use to remind me of who I am has stopped. I'm at a point where I don't even know the difference between my butt and the whole in the ground. The point being, let your partner know who they are for you - in your life, in your relationship, in the world. We aren't boys anymore, we aren't individuals anymore, we are your other half. And new identity that takes time to understand and it helps a lot when you take a moment in your life to let us know how we are showing up for you in your life. Am I still your superman?

You shouldn't have tried to change her. I dumped a guy for thinking I was too clingy. IN fact it was just LOVE. I am now married for 10 years to a man who LOVES how attentive I am and boy how much sex we have. You are a fool for pushing her into independance. SHe probably agreed to keep you and then found her own life was better than a man who didnt appreciate the love she had to offer.

There's love - which I give her - and there's clingy which comes from someones paranoia that the other person is going to leave them for another woman. My wife - gf at the time - was always afraid that I was going to go off with another person. And so she would do everything she could to try and "keep me entertained." If she had any suspicions, she would spam my phone with nasty texts. I could barely hang out with my parents without her thinking I was lying and cheating - it was insane. I love attention, I don't like lack of trust from my partner. Especially when I'm a loving guy.

great post....the bottom line is we cannot stay without sex...if we are without it it should only be because we choose too be without is a part of who we are. if your not sharing that then something is wrong...sure you may love the person you are with but if your not into them but remaining for the kids you may have too find a FWB as long as both agree on it.

So well said and so true i have seen this happen in relationships lots of times. If not they divorce or separate. It is a give and take situation though both have to put 50-50 into the relationship. Men have to do their share as well. Loosing touch with what is important can be fatal in many circumstances. Also people often take for granted what they have. Rule number one a relationship takes working on always from both sides. When circumstances happen it is vital that people do not loose their full focus in that, that they find a resolve. It is about finding solutions, and dealing with issues and how people deal with conflict overall, that determines the outcome. Some people have no sex drive due to medical issues there may be other issues at play, menopause, hormonal and such. Men may have issues in that area, before they admit it and seek help that can cause issues, not many men are reluctant to admit they have a problem, many blame everything else before they admit it is them really. I find that couples need to experiment not with others but in other ways with each other, that often helps keeping the excitement in the bedroom. Also it is recommended that when choosing a partner you find someone who is more like you. If one is more sexual, and one is not that is an automatic fail.

"If a man wants to feel in control of his marriage, he needs to make his wife feel safe enough to let him "wear the pants."If she doubts that you are mature enough, she won't let go of the control she has."

^^^this in a nutshell is what saved my marriage. I'm going to generalize a bit here, but I've seen this push & pull in too many marriages and the problem is summed up perfectly in the quoted statement. I tend to not talk about it too much because there are too many new age dogmas surrounding male female relationships & to try to talk about the "old fashioned" (they are not really old fashioned because relationship were just as messed up back then too) ways can bring up a debate that I really don't care to have.

In today's world a woman doesn't need constant physical protection, but she still needs emotional protection. It takes a long time to regain that emotional trust once it's lost & helping out around the house isn't what is going to provide that for her. That's why the list of chores so many men are given when they ask for sex doesn't really get her in the mood when they are completed.

I also think with the thought of partnership idea that its men, when married too young, are still dependent on the concept of their mothers doing things for them... and while a wife will do things for their husbands, the men have this "take care of me" attitude which quite frankly is a bedroom killer. I want a lover, not an overgrown child.

No it's true, you are right. That happens too.

i think yer correctabout young men,, they havent done things for themselves,, and had the time of independance,, thus dont appreciate it when married and have a partner to share the chores and drudrgery ,,

Well said.

Thank you for this insight. Not many men will go into such depth and honesty to try to express there feelings on the subject to help others so thank you.

Is it not about give and take and finding the balance that works? Both parties have to be committed to finding that 'common ground' that is mutually beneficial. I believe that we are meant to be married for a lifetime simply because it takes quite a lot of time for a relationship to mature. However, it is my belief that one can deduce at any stage (after appropriate intervention) when their spouse's character is enduringly destructive and their spouse is not willing to change or, worse still, is unable to change. Marriages may thus end because hope for a mutually beneficial and tolerable future together is lost.

Very well said.
I still want a blow job from my wifes niece

Hold your breath for that one....

Much of what you've said makes sense ...But any woman could have made alot of the same complaints.....I read an excellent book recently called "The men we never knew ". It explains many of the reasons men struggle with the life they are living. Many men feel they were born into certain roles that they never sighed up for( expected to work hard , protect and provide etc. ). I am a long time married woman with 2 sons. It made me cry , when a thought about how men feel about all this pressure...
However,women feel the same pressure to carryout a role that we were born into too.No one asked us either!
You said most men are "babies for life "! This is the real problem.....Us wives never signed up to be your mother and we don't like it . If a man wants to feel in control of his marriage, he needs to make his wife feel safe enough to let him "wear the pants."If she doubts that you are mature enough, she won't let go of the control she has.If you want something done properly, do it yourself mind set. It would be heaven to be able to say to your spouse, "go for it ....i trust that you will do it all well and i resign from all the **** that i have had to manage all these years. I'm going for a swim . Bye. " When we no longer have to juggle life for everyone under the roof , we might also have more time to think about sex..and the energy to thoroughly enjoy it !!
Re. baggage ...everyone has some ..we would all be empty shells if we hadn't experienced life. We would also lack the wisdom we have gained along the way. Good luck to you.

HWSX. Well said. Men you should pay attention to this. Your wife wants to be your girl friend sometimes and she wants to feel cared for and not alone in all of life's task and responsibilities. Sometimes it goes the other way the man does it all, but I would say the majority leans more toward the wife, IMO. Some share life's duties well, do you? Just something to think about.

One more thing,sometimes men say woman or my wife is controlling, well, if you actually took some of the responsibilities and made some decisions then the wife could step back, breath, relax and let you take it for a while and would be glad too believe me. Then, we might not seem so controlling. Another, just for thought, and is my opinion based on some experiences I've had.

Thanks RRRW.
I did not intend to belittle men, or imply that only women do this.
It can go both ways. However, where the husband is the main breadwinner , and the wife has stepped back from her working life to raise the kids and run the household , she can end up doing more than she should .
She can end up Micro Managing everyone, including her man. Some may do this because they like to control, others may do it because they feel that it's necessary. None of us get be babies after we marry.

Thank you happiness... so very true.

You takin' to me ? !!!!...LOL

1 More Response

I like what I read and think it is true and good to talk about. But rightfully commented..where is the female version? I would like to give my version. This is what i have seen in many of my friends relationships.

Except for everything that is already written... just some food for thought for the other side. I believe that if a woman in the relationship is not treated with respect towards other woman by her partner....e.g. her partner looks too much or too often at other woman and or tries to get a smile out of them (which might make him feel like he is still wanted or in the market) or he even gleeres at other woman when his partner is around, or his head turns to girls whilst driving the car, or finding **** hanging around the house, or just that little too much interest in another woman when his partner is around? Maybe it is a combination of all of the above, what kind of message is that sending to his woman and the subject woman? How does this make her feel? Or how would she feel towards the other woman?

Sounds like a bunch of bullsh*t to me.

Is it because this makes you realize that you are partially responsible for being on this forum as you controlled and changed your H so much that he lost himself and lost interest in sex with you. For you it's easier to just put all the blame on you H by not trying to understand the issues.

Thank you for the insight. It is helpful to hear from the other side.

Thank you. I feel sooo selfish right now.

I am actually very shocked at many that disagree with this. I mean surely this is not the case for everyone. However, part of being a spouse is growing together. Many of the red flags were there from the beginning. Most get caught up in the fairy tale or the selfish reasons to marry. Whether you are a man or a woman, it is your responsibility to at least try to understand your spouse. If not, what's the point? Get a divorce. I don't see anything with a husband wanting to be his wife's hero. I think people are getting hung on the cliche of it. However, the hero is the protector. The one you come to and feel safe with. If your husband doesn't feel needed, what the hell is he there for. Granted, he could be the reason that you no longer feel safe. We also have to be responsible for our own growth. However, is marriage about sharing everything. Building one another up. If you sit in a corner scorned because you no longer respect your spouse, what are you going to do about? Are you going to step up and help them regain their sense of self. Or sit and blame them for being lost, hence losing your respect. Maybe your spouse has lost a piece of themselves. Is it now because you are so indifferent that it is just their problem. My question is, why stay? If you don't at least want to try to help another that you claim to love. When you talk about the hero complex, it is more than just feeling like the king of the castle. It is just as equal to a woman wanting to feel safe, or be his queen. Or be the only woman that he adores. It makes you feel special! Sometime in relationships we give gifts that others are unable to receive. In that you expect something back. However, the gift you gave is sitting in a closet. The receiver doesn't even now you gave it. Because they are not in that place. You feel resentment because you think they should get it. Help him get! If it can't be fixed stopped wasting both parties time. Because when you sit like a bump on a log you too are just as guilty!

I thought this was a brilliant response!

Very well said, we are not that complicated.

I am not my husband's therapist. I am not his mother. And I sure as hell am not a damsel in distress any more. The moment I ceased being a hysterical pile of fear and insecurities who could not even be bothered to eat, that was the moment he ceased his physical attentions. Being a partner is incompatible with establishing a "you are my hero" power imbalance.