how do I start to fix this?

Low or no sex drive?
littleblackcloud
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how do I start to fix this?

Postby littleblackcloud » Wed Jun 29, 2011 5:18 pm

Ok, here goes my sob story.

Both husband and I are Christians. Regrettably we both had sexual relationships with other people before we met. It was one person, in long term relationships we intended to end in marriage for both of us. This has never been a big issue between us. We both knew each other's history from the start. We'd both been stupid, got hurt and had found forgiveness with God. In a way - the fact that our histories "matched" kind of left us feeling easy with each other, in the same boat so to speak.

Anyway, the sexual spark between us always seemed very bright while we were going out (we don't "date" in the UK). He made me feel loved, beautiful and desired and we were both passionate with each other - probably a bit more so than we should have been before our wedding but we had to wait about four years. During this time I assumed that once we were married we would have a passionate and loving sex life. I was really looking forward to that side of our life together. Of all the things I thought might be our relationship weak spot I NEVER dreamed it would be sex!

We've been married three years now and sex has been a problem since day one and now it's starting to eat away at me. In all other respects I have a wonderful husband, seriously, I couldn't want for a better friend and companion, he's a caring and loving, good Christian man. I KNOW he loves me I just can't understand why he doesn't want to make love to me. He assures me it's not that he doesn't fancy me. If I even suggest that I feel he doesn't fancy me he gets very cross that I doubt him. Seriously though, I have even wondered if he's gay I'm so frustrated.

On our wedding day was a busy day obviously and we were both tired so I wasn't expecting fireworks that night by any means. We got home on our first night and had a cup of tea. I then said I needed to get my dress off and made my way upstairs entirely anticipating that he would follow. He didn't, so I had a shower and put some pyjamas on and went back downstairs where he suggested we open all the cards. We had a nice time opening all the cards and reading all the lovely messages people had sent us but I did feel a little let down. Eventually we did go to bed but things were fairly short and perfunctory.

I thought, never mind, things will pick up on the honeymoon - we'll both have time to get some sleep and be relaxed - he's never at his best when tired out and stressed. Well to be honest I was expecting to make love most days - isn't that what a honeymoon is for? What I got was a husband who wanted to take me out to share all the beauties of the island we were staying on and seemed singularly uninterested in me sexually. I love his enthusiasm for all things wild but I just wish there had been as much enthusiasm for his new wife! It all ended up in tears because I felt so rejected.

It's been pretty much the same ever since. I love him, I only have to look at him to get turned on. I'd like to make love to him every day and whenever we feel like it. Making love however only happens after all the jobs have been done in the evening and he's been in bed for a few minutes and had a wind down by reading his book and then I might be invited over for a hug and if I'm very very lucky we might make love. By this time in the evening I'm tired and feel like I'm the least important thing on a long to do list so even if we do make love it's with me feeling tired and fed up.

I no longer feel beautiful or desired. I feel like a stupid lump of ugly. If I try and express any kind of sexual desire towards him I'm left feeling like an oversexed deviant. I feel so deceived. I try not to pester him, I try and make things how he wants (a tidy, stress free home etc). I have tried talking to him again and again sometimes with tears and sometimes as calmly and reasonably as I can. He just gets upset and says he's sorry he's failing me but then nothing changes. I am at my wit's end. I just don't know what to do next except hope that my desire for him dies and I can live with just hugs and love.

Where do I start?

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby AkMike » Sun Jul 03, 2011 9:49 pm

Do you attend a Bible-believing church? If so, are there people there you can trust? Again, if so, I'd suggest counseling, stat. This has gone on for way too long. Could be low T for him, or some emotional hindrance, whatever, but it needs to be dealt with.

And no, you absolutely are not a sexual deviant. In a marriage, each spouse should be thoroughly satisfied with the sex life. Once a day is definitely not out of line. When we marry, our bodies are no longer exclusively our own. They belong to our spouse, as well, for a fulfilling sexual relationship.

And you are not ugly. It's the refusal on your husband's part that's telling you that lie. But, he wouldn't have married you if there had not been an attraction there, right?

Don't keep this to yourself any longer, littleblackcloud. Set up for counseling with a trusted friend who knows his/her Bible, and have your husband come, too. If he won't, then you go anyway. A wife deserves to be sexually loved by her husband.

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how do I start to fix this?

Postby mamame » Mon Jul 04, 2011 5:06 am

BTDT. I remember hoping my DH was gay because that would have been easier to handle than his rejection of me.
I suggest a testosterone test and counseling. IMO those are both mandatory.
You are wise to address this head on. I hope we can be of help to you.

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby GaryP74 » Mon Jul 04, 2011 6:43 am

We'd both been stupid, got hurt and had found forgiveness with God.


Forgiveness from God does not take away "scars". My guess would be, that his "hurt" has something to do with being rejected by the first woman.

He assures me it's not that he doesn't fancy me.


I think he's telling you the truth.

Making love however only happens after all the jobs have been done in the evening
feel like I'm the least important thing on a long to do list


People procrastinate for a couple of reasons. One of them is NOT the relative importance of the thing they avoid doing. People put things ahead on the list if they are rewarding and pleasant, or they ameliorate pain. People put things behind on the list if they invoke unpleasant feelings, or bring pain.

He just gets upset and says he's sorry he's failing me


He's telling you there what the pain is.

I KNOW he loves me I just can't understand why he doesn't want to make love to me.


Of course you can't. You can't understand because there are no factors which would cause him to not want to make love to you, IN YOUR PERSPECTIVE. The reasons exist IN HIS MIND but not in yours.

I agree with mamame. Counseling and doctor. Start with the doctor. There can be an underlying physical problem which has been there for a long, long time.

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby littleblackcloud » Mon Jul 04, 2011 10:55 am

Thank you for your replies.

Not sure about counselling. Our church is certainly Bible believing but there's no-one there we could discuss this with!

I will try asking him gently about low T. As most men,he's a bit averse to healthcare, but to his credit he did go to the GUM clinic before we were married (his previous was unfaithful to him so he could have had anything) so maybe he will do this for me.

Totally true that there are scars even with forgiveness. I know his confidence was very knocked by his previous rejection and I don't think he never expected to let anyone else in emotionally after that. I feel very blessed that he didn't marry her and had the courage to try again with me :)

I don't know if he's putting off ML because he's putting it off as such. In other things he gets the boring/nasty stuff done first and then enjoys the good stuff. I'm just a bit more of a hedonist with a "lets have fun now while we can and the washing up can wait 'till the morning" attitude. If we wait 'till late I'm just tired and past it.

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how do I start to fix this?

Postby mamame » Mon Jul 04, 2011 11:27 am

I would look outside if your church for counseling. If he won't go - go alone. Many of us have been down this road and wasted years of our marriage hoping that it would just "get better". Most of us found out there was emotional work we needed to do on ourselves. If you look, God is faithful to show you where you are in bondage.
You can start now by reading Boundaries in Marriage

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby ukFred » Sat Jul 16, 2011 4:30 am

Please, LittleBlackCloud, don't do what I did and leave it until you have been married for over 25 years before you start trying tofix it. Bay that stage you will be driver crazy by all that has gone wrong and every little bump in the road will seem to be an impassible mountain.
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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby littleblackcloud » Wed Jul 20, 2011 6:17 am

I tried suggesting a visit to the doctor but he's not going - he says he's just tired. To be honest he works really hard and long stressful hours so he has every right to be tired.

We had a bit of a chat about communication. He shows me he loves me by doing things and assumes I "hear" that. I show him love in physical affection (which sometimes annoys him) or by telling him (which he thinks is unnecessary). A classic "love languages" mis-match.

Anyway - since then I've been getting more hugs in bed and him telling me he loves me and would love to make love to me if he wasn't just so tired. It's not perfect but it's better.

We've got a holiday in a couple of weeks. Hopefully we can get some rest and ML a bit more. I'm not going to expect too much.

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby Gemma » Wed Jul 20, 2011 7:20 am

littleblackcloud wrote: Not sure about counselling. Our church is certainly Bible believing but there's no-one there we could discuss this with!....
I will try asking him gently about low T.


Then go outside your church for counseling and if that's frowned upon, find another church.

Why the need to ask "gently?" He's your husband. If you stop tip-toeing around the problem, it will help him see that low T is a medical condition which must be checked. There is no need for embarrassment.

littleblackcloud wrote:I tried suggesting a visit to the doctor but he's not going - he says he's just tired. To be honest he works really hard and long stressful hours so he has every right to be tired.

Anyway - since then I've been getting more hugs in bed and him telling me he loves me and would love to make love to me if he wasn't just so tired.


I realize you're trying to give your husband the benefit of the doubt, but has he been tired and stressed for 3 years? You will never know for sure if he's "just tired" if he doesn't see the doctor. Ignorance is not bliss. Not knowing the cause of the problem, doesn't make it go away.

If receiving hugs and him saying, "I love you," comfortably replaced sex, then you would have no problem.
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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby hodge-family » Wed Jul 20, 2011 9:04 am

Low T is insidious: Not only does it interfere with libido, but it mucks with sexual performance, saps his general sense of well-being and energy levels (tiredness!), causes loss of body strength (sometimes even muscle atrophy), decreases mental sharpness and his sense of self-worth AND can cause him to live in a cloud of depression that neither of you can see. It is bad news - it REALLY screws up a fellow.

He sounds as if he is rational and approachable. Ask him if he will humor you and you can both research low-T together this evening. Then sit down and Google "low testosterone symptoms" - I guarantee it will be an eye-opener.

Praying for you both...

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby littleblackcloud » Mon Jul 25, 2011 11:12 am

Gemma wrote:Then go outside your church for counseling and if that's frowned upon, find another church.

Why the need to ask "gently?" He's your husband. If you stop tip-toeing around the problem, it will help him see that low T is a medical condition which must be checked. There is no need for embarrassment.


My church is a fairly small denomination. Everyone knows everyone else. Changing churches is not an option for doctrinal reasons. We do have a confidential phone counselling service.

I ask him gently because he responds best if I am gentle. It's not tip-toeing it's just not blundering in and making him feel bad - I can be rather blunt and hurtful sometimes.

Gemma wrote:I realize you're trying to give your husband the benefit of the doubt, but has he been tired and stressed for 3 years? You will never know for sure if he's "just tired" if he doesn't see the doctor. Ignorance is not bliss. Not knowing the cause of the problem, doesn't make it go away.

If receiving hugs and him saying, "I love you," comfortably replaced sex, then you would have no problem.


If I had his job and did all the extra work he does for preaching etc I'd have had a breakdown from lack of sleep by now.

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby littleblackcloud » Mon Jul 25, 2011 11:26 am

Thanks for replies.

Interesting chat this weekend. He was honestly really surprised when I explained that for me a really good holiday would be one where we just didn't do much and relaxed and made love a lot. All this time we have been going on holiday once or twice a year and he's been filling every day with as much as busy sightseeing etc as possible because he thought that was what I wanted from a holiday. All that time I've been going along with his busy plans because I thought if he got to do what he wanted maybe I'd get the thing I wanted!

He's so busy trying to please me and keep me happy all the time he just ends up annoying me. I don't want his mission in life to be to make me happy! I want the freedom to be happy or unhappy and for him to just share life with me. I don't need him to fix everything or make everything perfect.

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby MapleSyrup » Wed Aug 03, 2011 2:39 pm

Glad to hear you had this communication "breakthrough". I hope this is the beginning of many more open, frank discussions! It sounds like so much of your guys' issues is stemming from a lack of communication. Keep the lines open. :wink:
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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby littleblackcloud » Fri Jul 27, 2012 2:49 pm

Just realised it's been over a year since I started this thread.

We've hit a low point. Well I'm feeling low and he's feeling stressed because I'm low.

I don't feel like anything has changed. I'm still on the same old treadmill except I've given up more. I've also started to get really scared of his disapproval. Either he's getting ratty and critical more easily or I'm just getting hyper sensitive. Not sure which it is. I get to the point where I'm paralysed by panic. I'm too scared to do or say anything in case it's the wrong thing and I know that inaction or silence are just as likely to be wrong. I'm just shutting down, trying not to feel or react and then it all boils over sometimes.

It's things outside too. My job contract ends in four months. All our practical plans always led up to me finishing my professional training and then us settling where I could get a permanent job. Things have changed since then and now the prospect of a job is very slim. I've got an extension on my current contract 'till spring probably but that just leaves us in limbo for another six months. To be honest I just don't know what I want. Do I pursue the career I have trained for all these years and move to a new place neither of us wants to live? Do I give up my career and just do any old job I can find locally? That doesn't look very hopeful though as outside my area I'm utterly unqualified and unskilled jobs are hard to get in the current job market. Do I want to try for children and give it all up? (LOL - that my be impossible with the no lovemaking situation!). We can't think about getting a home of our own until I sort out all these questions.

I feel utterly lost.

Husband's currently away for two weeks from today (work trip) and I'm thinking maybe I can use the time to try and get myself in a bit better place but I have absolutely no idea what to do to get myself there.

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby maxxim » Fri Jul 27, 2012 9:58 pm

Did you ever get to counselling, either for yourself, for him or together?
Was there any response in practice from your disclosure about the type of holiday you would like?

Have you been able to both take a step back and talk about where you are in your relationship, how each of you are feeling, what messages you think you are picking up from each other and how each others actions are affecting you both.?

My guess is you need someone skilled to help create a safe place for that sort of communication to happen....even if it is to help you work out what you want and need at this time.

maybe this 2 weeks provides an opportunity God can use? Praying for you.. ::pray
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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby golfwidow » Sat Jul 28, 2012 12:35 am

littleblackcloud it's been over a year and things have got worse not better, do you want to look back in another year or 2 or 20 and things are the same.

You say you are scared of his disapproval, why? does he "do disapproval" as a way of shutting you down, is he aggressive?

You say you don't know where to start, I suggest you start with you, you're in the UK right? go to your Doctor explain the situation try and get some free help for you, ask for counselling for you if DH won't go with you, are you depressed you sound like you might be, the Doc should be able to help with that.

May I suggest that if you cannot talk directly to your husband you write him a letter, it gives you chance to calmly put forward your worries and hopes, be honest be straight forward in this letter tell him what is in your heart, explain that you wish to address this problem and that you expect him to make an effort too.

Having a sex life within marriage is a God given right, it shouldn't be something you have to earn.

You do subscribe to the sexually refused section on here don't you, a lot of advice and help can be found there.

::pray

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby littleblackcloud » Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:46 am

Thanks maxxim and golfwidow,

The holiday was ok. He listened but he tried too hard to please me. I don't want his effort to please me. I want him to actually want me! That makes me sound terribly ungrateful but I think people will know what I mean.

I did suggest counselling but he doesn't really see we have a problem. Also, the idea of talking to me is bad enough - talking to a stranger about things would be beyond difficult for him.
One of the things I'm struggling with is that we are at a point where we need to make choices like what we are going to do with my career, will we try for children and where we will live. I really want to know how he feels about the different options but he just wants to make me happy. He'll go all out to get me what I want and make me happy. But I don't know what will make me happy and I don't want him to flog himself to death making me happy. All I know is that I want him with me and for him to be happy. He smiled the other day and it was such a lovely thing and made me realised how infrequently I see him smile.

I try to express my feelings calmly. I know sulking and crying won't get me anywhere.

He's not aggressive, he just gets frustrated easily. I wish he could be calmer and more relaxed in life.

We're usually just having a normal conversation and then he says something which sounds really critical to me (sorry - can't think of any examples right now).
I then freeze with hurt/feel kicked in the stomach.
I then try and calmly say "what you just said made me feel like x because of y"
He then usually gets annoyed at me for being oversensitive because he didn't mean it in a critical way at all.
His anger and annoyance then set me off and we have an argument - usually the quiet sort which I find far harder than the shouting and screaming kind.
Eventually he might grudgingly apologise and I'll say sorry for being oversensitive.
It's just making me more and more jumpy.

He can't understand why I sometimes feel unloved "Look at all these things I DO for you to express my love!" he says. He just doesn't get that whilst I can KNOW that this is him expressing love it is very hard to FEEL it as love.

I'm not depressed. I have been in the past so I know what it feels like.

I think I can get some counselling via my employee assistance programme. I will look into that.

I think I also need to write down all the things that are bothering me. Trouble is they all look so trivial and stupid written down and I can see why they don't seem at all serious to my husband. I feel ashamed that I find normal life so difficult to cope with.

Sorry - that's all come out in a complete jumble!

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby TN_Wife » Sat Jul 28, 2012 8:55 am

I am sorry you are going through this. I am thinking and praying for you.

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby littleblackcloud » Wed Aug 01, 2012 3:10 pm

I found the work counselling service and phoned up but just couldn't bring myself to make the arrangement to talk to someone. I feel so silly getting all het up about my husband not wanting me when there are women out there who'd bite my arm off to get what I have got.

Spoke to my husband this evening. He's staying in a nice hotel. He always comments how much he likes good hotels and flying business class because everything is calm and organised. I said I was sorry our home didn't give him that same sense of calm and then he got annoyed that I apologised. I tried to explain that I felt bad that our home was so chaotic and I didn't have the time or skills to make it how he wanted. He then just got really cross and said "don't make me angry" which always makes me feel awful.

I get the same thing if I say "I don't feel like you fancy me". He gets so angry and says "of course I fancy you - it makes me really angry that you could say I don't!"

What am I doing wrong here? How can I fix it?

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Re: how do I start to fix this?

Postby littleblackcloud » Tue Aug 07, 2012 1:10 pm

Right. Phoned councillor via work scheme. Did what I knew I didn't want to do and cried. Have not arranged any sessions yet. I'm going to try and tell my husband I'm thinking about counselling. If that ends well I will be surprised.


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