Intimacy And Control

Another dose of emotional roller coaster for me... I found the courage to reach out for my husband'syesterday, while watching tv. He immediately held mine in response, as if he was waiting for it. Next morning he hugged me spontaneously and very affectionately, as I was making myself a cup of coffee. A first hint of intimacy after so many many months. God it's been so long, it felt better than sex!

But.. later that day he returned to his usual sulky and stone-walled state. Some trivial reason not even worth discussing.

I read somewhere that emprisoning somebody in a pattern of ups and downs, give and refuse, love and withdrawal, is ultimately all about power -the refuser decides when to communicate, and when not to; when to offer affection and understanding, and when to cruelly deny it; he or she is in control, has both the carrots and the sticks. It occurred to me that so long as I need him, so long as I expect something of him, he will do this. I don't think he's consciously doing this to control me- it must be a response he's inherited from his upbringing.

I cried a bit on my own. Then I pulled myself together. I thought to myself, if this is the sort of thing he decides to get upset over, his choice. I made an effort.

What a dilemma is facing me now: do I stop expecting things of him, burying every hope? do I keep on trying, falling in the same loop of reaching out and rejection? or else, where can I find the selflessness and strength needed to reach out honestly and from the bottom of my heart without having any expectations of intimacy and warmth?

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10 Responses Nov 25, 2009

Akame - years from now, you'll find your husband had some real reason for behaving like this. Could be health, medicine, or just faling out of love. I somehow doubt people would do this on purpose. Surely, I had my periods of time when I turned my back on my wife, and she well deserved it. I was even manipulating for short moments, but it was a mere reaction to feeling hurt. What good would it come from purposely causing pain to the other ?

Ditto for what Analyzer said. I've been in your shoes, my heart goes out to you.

I also wanted to add that I can identify with the 'control' aspect of your marriage - my husband became very controlling over the last few years....and I think refusing sex was part of that (whether he realised it or not).....its not a great place to be in.....

You are in a very painful place and I can hear that from your story. I echo all of Analyzers advice, and having been there myself (although I'm in the process of leaving my sexless marriage) i do very much, know how you are've got to listen to yourself....and think about 'you' for a me...difficult to do when you're used to making sure everyone BUT you is happy....but in the long will eat you up brave xxx

He might be afraid to show affection. Was he hurt in the past? Try reaching out more when your watching tv try cuddleing. Also whenever me and my girlfriend are having trouble we always just yell at each other. I know it sounds weird but to have a healthy relationship you have to be open and state what you dont like about them. Apparently i have smelly feet. :)

I had the same problem for 15 years but the worst part is when he finally did start to make an effort, I was so repulsed by him that I didn't want it anymore.

"Some trivial reason not even worth discussing."<br />
<br />
Who gets to decide if it's trivial?<br />
<br />
Think about it.

Oh Akame - you have been reading my posts and I have been reading yours. <br />
Your last lines are exactly what gave me the courage to finally say ENOUGH DAMMIT.<br />
I have been married 19 years and everything is exactly the same as it ever was. NO amount of trying on my part has resulted in a stronger marriage or a happier husband.<br />
<br />
How many times do we have to bang our heads on the wall before we finally get it - the wall is immobile. The only thing to do is go around the wall.

Don't give up. Things will turn around. Whenever my husband and I are having a sexless time, we book ourselves a hotel room and have great hotel sex! This works every single time. There is something about being away from home and away from all the responsibilities that loosen us up.

Is your husband depressed? Is he on medications that could account for his moods? Has he been to a doctor lately?<br />
This could be a medical condition. Don't give up on him. He might not have control of this. Sit down and talk to him and suggest a check up for both of you. You might be surprised.<br />
Good luck, and I hope and pray that everything works out for you two.