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Chances of sex therapy when one of the partners has a satisfying relationship on the side
My first post here. I'm a 47-year-old man, married for 23+ years. My wife is 46. Our emotional connection is quite good, we love spending time together. I'd say we're getting along better than most couples we know.
It seems like the only serious issue we have is sex. Here’s our story.
We married quite young and didn't have almost any sexual experience. At first, we both enjoyed sex, but, after a while, my wife started shutting off. For years, I wrongly interpreted this as decline in desire but, in fact, she just didn't enjoy it with me the way she was longing to. And she couldn’t find the way to tell me about this. I just accepted this and didn't pay much attention, navigating our busy lives.
7.5 years ago we moved to Australia and the move was a major shock for her. She almost didn't know any English and, for a while, had to rely on me and our daughter for day-to-day communications. She also had to go through the process of confirming her nursing qualification, which took 6 years.
Shortly after the move, we hired a private English tutor for her (a handsome Aussie guy 5 years older than her) and they quickly fell in love with each other. I discovered this affair after a couple of months and, obviously was shocked. We had a rough period of time, with her explaining to me how she loved both of us and didn't want to end either of the relationships. I reluctantly agreed to accept this, and they kept seeing each other for years since then roughly once a week. I didn't have much of an insight into that relationship of hers and things seemed to continue as normal between us. I didn't know throughout all that time if sex was involved.
~4 months ago the story repeated itself. She met another guy and fell in love with him, very passionately. I discovered this new affair ~1.5 months ago. The same pattern repeated, she claimed she loved both of us (actually, the 3 of us, including the 1st guy) and didn't want to end any of the relationships. It took me a while to peel the layers of protection she built around herself to fully understand what was going all these years.
She had a passionate true love with the 1st guy, which involved everything, including sex. He’s quite a character though, so she was suffering lots of ups and downs with him. He had other women from time to time, and she felt jealousy.
Wow you've been on a rollercoaster Pogret Hi btw & welcome 🙂
Sounds from how you're talking that you've been accepting of this situation which I imagine would be very difficult to do so power to you.
She's saying she still loves you & being honest about loving the others so I imagine she's being honest about loving you too & as you said you have a good emotional connection aye
How do you feel about the future with your wife & how are you feeling about it all now
I'm sorry this must be hard on you
Welcome to this forum mpogret (and hi demonblaster),
This is a safe, anonymous, supportive environment where we can share our multicultural experiences in the context of mental health and hear each other without judgement. We always aim for this experience of sharing to be a positive and supporting one. There are many who can relate to your story I'm sure, and most don't verbalize it like you have. Thank you for sharing your story here. There are many different types of relationships in every culture and as long as the adults involved in them are consenting, then it's up to them to navigate and enjoy their experiences. Relationships are as unique as the people who are in them, and there's no right or wrong. I am not clear by reading your thread if you have supports (like family counselling/couple counselling or individual counselling), and other formal or informal supports (friends, family etc) available and know how to access and navigate these. Also, how do you feel about your relationship? Has this arrangement affected your mental health? Have you communicated, (or are you able to), your emotions, thoughts and ideas about all this with your wife? There is also a 'relationships' section on these forums which may be helpful to visit. Any relationship depends on the people in it to make it what is. Communication, openness and emotional honesty is the key. It seems from what you are saying that you and your wife support each other in many areas and both love each other. Sex is important but there are so many other aspects to a relationship like companionship, support, comfort, dependability, financial security, raising children etc. It's all about balance and needs. There are also private chats on this website where you can explore more with a qualified professional your personal circumstances and various resources that can support you. Hope you can both work out some strategies as a couple and as individuals to support you and help you live a fulfilling life together or apart.
Thanks demonblaster, it is very hard indeed.
I didn't end my story because of the character limit. Basically, I agreed to accept the arrangement where she's able to spend time and have sex with her other lovers while staying with me under one condition: we have to get our sex to the same level as she had with these other guys.
And this is where we have a problem. She simply feels like sex with me is so much inferior comparing to them, she barely agrees to accept it... just to please me. But I'm not ready to accept this.
So, I want us to go to sex therapy. At first, she was completely dismissal of it, saying that sex is a naturally feeling-driven domain and the therapy would feel completely unnatural, so she doesn’t see how it would work. But now she reluctantly agreed to try it, while remaining sceptical.
My question is, would such a therapy have any chance, while one of the partners is fully committed and really wants for it to work, while another one agreed in her head, but is sceptical and, at the same time, has fully satisfying sex on the side.
Yeah good question actually, if she's in the back of the mind not really wanting to do that it could cloud it but at least she's going so may get something out of it.
You must really love her. There are open relationships, the bits I've heard they seem to work but only heard snippets
Imo it's not unreasonable what you're asking
Thank you so much demonblaster for your support!
You're right, I do love her deeply and I feel her love for me has the same kind of depth. It's just that her love towards me transformed into something more resembling sisterly/motherly kind rather than sexual affection. Had I felt the same towards her, there would have been no issue. But I do love her in the fullest, including the strongest sexual affection one could imagine. She is the woman of my life!
I could find another woman just for sex, but I don't want to do this! I'm not sure if I'm capable of loving multiple people at the same time (like my wife), so I'm afraid getting involved with another woman would ruin my marriage, which is not the end result I'd want. And, if not, that would probably be quite unfair towards that other woman...
Anyway, this sex therapy is my only hope. Wish me luck!
You're welcome Pogret all the very best with it
Be interested how it goes & how youre going too anytime ☺