Need help untangling this mess of my marriage
I need serious help in untangling the mess of my marriage
1. I am not born and brought up in Australia but migrated here after I got married. But I am a proud Australian now. We have been married for more than 20 years and in Australia for 18 years. We have 2 kids (15, 9) both born in Australia
2. My husband and I both come from a strict society where sex before marriage is completely against the rules. My husband was inexperienced when we got married. I was always rebel so I had one previous sexual experience but kept quite about it
3. We did spend time together before marriage to get to know each other but we didn’t test our sexual chemistry before marriage
4. As it turns out we are compatible in many ways except in the bedroom. I have high sex drive. I will have sex every day if that’s possible but I know it’s not practical but I do need it at least once a week. My husband however has a low libido and I suspect he might be asexual. Because a) He doesn’t feel need for sex, b) He feels disgusted towards some natural sexual acts
5. Even when we were newly married I instigated sex more number of times than him.
6. For the past few years any action in the bedroom happened solely because I literally begged for it. Even then he gave such a minimal input that I was left frustrated at the end
7. I asked him for separation and gave him explicit reasons but when we discussed separation with the kids they were devastated. I decided to put their welfare ahead of my needs
8. Unfortunately the need didn’t go away. I cheated on him. However after a month of deception I broke down and confessed everything. I also stated that I won’t stop doing what I am doing
9. But it’s sort of like he either doesn’t care or wants me to cheat. In fact after my confession he has become more affectionate towards me giving me hugs and kisses. We still sleep together and he cuddles me like always
10: I know I cannot continue doing what I am doing indefinitely
Please help me untangle this mess
Hello Ausa and welcome to Beyond Blue forums
Relationships can be so complex at times can’t they? I can imagine your current situation is causing you stress for a number of reasons, which can lead to anxiety and depression. I’m sure there must also be cultural norms in your society about being faithful to your partner. These of course will add to your current feelings.
Sometimes I think it’s unfortunate sex and marriage are intrinsically linked. However, that is the cultural expectation for many.
For me, I find that a relationship / partnership / marriage is based on many things. Sex is just one of those aspects. It does make life difficult when one or the other partner does not have the same sex drive. I can totally relate to that. For me, it meant clear communication between my partner and I about our needs. And as these change over the years, to communicate these changes too.
So, you do not want to continue on indefinitely with your current arrangements. What are your options? Now you’ve probably been through some of these already in your own head, so please bear with me while I think out loud -
Have you sat down and had a heart to heart with your partner about your sex drive?
Are you able to have a frank and open discussion with him about - what may help him increase his sex drive? Not that I’m advocating for it - but there is always a pill available to help, if he and you were both agreeable.
Are there any distractions you can find for yourself, rather than having sex? For example - sports, hobbies? I’m sure you’ve thought about this, maybe something else?
Keep reaching out to us Ausa, if and when you want to. I’m sure there are other caring, friendly, supportive and non judgmental members who can share their story and how they’ve managed. You’re not alone.
It can be very hard on a relationship when one person has little/no interest in sex but the other is keen on it. I sympathise, although my situation has been more the other way around with me not wanting it anymore and my husband still keen.
Pamela is right you need to have a frank discussion with your husband about this because you can't go on this way indefinitely. You mentioned that he doesn't seem too bothered by the fact you cheated, which is not a common reaction to infidelity. It could mean he has disengaged from the marriage so completely that he really doesn't feel anything about it, he could be numb to it or in shock, or it could even mean he is asexual as you mention and knows he can never give you what you need in that area...maybe there is even a kind of relief on his side? I know that sounds bizarre. But if you are having sex elsewhere it does take the pressure off him to do something he apparently doesn't want to do...
Don't take my speculations as gospel, you need to ask him why he appears so blase about the situation. If everything else is going ok in the marriage and you are getting affection from him and truly the only thing missing is sex is it possible (bear with me here i hope this doesn't offend) would he be receptive to the idea of an open marriage?
I know that might seem shocking and I'm not advocating it at all. I have no first hand experience. But I do know of a couple who have this arrangement and it seems to work for them. They are still friends, coparents, pay the mortgage together, but as for sex they are both allowed to seek it elsewhere. Considering your background this might be out of the question but I thought I'd throw it out there in case it was something you could envisage working for you. It's rare but it does seem to function for some people.
I hope I haven't offended!
Hi Pamela and Goodwitch
I am looking for advice hence I posted on forum. I will take all the advice with good intentions that it is given and there is no offence given or taken in any of the advice
1. My husband is quite stubborn and it’s very hard to discuss with him any of my issues. Talking to him sometimes feels like hitting against the brick wall. My nature is not complaining in general and I try to be happy with circumstances. Our cultural background is such that a woman is not supposed to feel desire so there is bit of shame on my part to express my desire
2. I tried celibacy. I read about how exercise can reduce your libido. I have for past year pushed myself both physically and psychological to reduce the need. However I am plagued with injuries while I was pursuing physical exhaustion
3 Until quite recently my husband used to blame me for his non interest. I used to feel defective because of it. I do have a need to feel desired and wanted. I miss this feeling even more than sex. This is what led me to seek pleasure elsewhere. With my recent experience I at least know that the fault doesn’t lie with me
4 I think my husband does kind of feel relieved that I am pursuing physical satisfaction elsewhere. But I still feel guilty about doing what I am doing because of how I was brought up
5 I still want separation and eventual divorce, but my kids will be devastated if I go down that path. Also we do not have any family here. I am working full time and contribute equally for finances. I will need my husband’s continuous ongoing support for child care and for me to stay gainfully employed.
6. My social circle here is from similar background link mine. I will not feel comfortable in discussing real reasons for separation with friends and family. Even if I manage enough courage and disclose real reasons to close family members or friends they will counsel me to remain in a sexless marriage. It will be very hard to garner support for my cause.
7. Currently our marriage is kind of open marriage. But we are both too uncomfortable to disclose everything. He has expressed no interest in knowing all the details about my affairs. I don’t want to hurt him. So it’s more Don’t ask Don’t tell. However I work full time and have kids. It’s simply not practical to pursue pleasure elsewhere I simply do not have free time.
Hi and welcome Ausa;
I'm really sad for you because I know what it's like to be in an intimacy lacking relationship. It hurts and feels isolating to the point of exhaustion.
I totally understand the feelings you've described and your desire for a divorce. Mine ended after 5 yrs of crying from a broken heart. I even felt dirty at times for wanting sexual intimacy, which he was good at 'implying'.
I never went outside the relationship though as all I wanted was him to genuinely want me. I can sympathise with you and even understand your need for foreign arms to hold you. It can be a lonely life...
Although your kids will be affected by divorce, it's an option that could change everyone's life for the better. I'm not saying you should do it; I'm saying living the way you do affects others directly or indirectly, whether you intend it or not.
Do you suffer with bouts of guilt? I'm concerned for you..
Living openly, honestly and comfortable with however you feel's 'right' is the best advice I have.
I look forward to hearing from you. I like your numbered paragraphs too. 🙂