I don't want sex with my husband. What should I do?
May 20, 2012 12:45 PM Subscribe
Four years ago I married a great guy. We've been together a total of eight years. Sometime around when we got married...maybe a little before, I stopped wanting sex with him. I dreaded it on our wedding night/honeymoon. At first I thought it was just a phase, something to do with wedding planning burnout and general nerves. Four years later, it's even worse than it was. Otherwise, we have a good relationship, I think. We have everything in common, a shared worldview, good communication. Because of the sexual issue, we have talked numerous times about separating. I guess what I can't figure out is, why this has happened, and if our entire relationship is worth ending over it.
posted by anonymous to human relations (80 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Some additional facts to consider:
- I have always been the breadwinner in our relationship. At times I have been extremely frustrated with this. I guess I have some deep, primal expectation for him to be "the provider" that I didn't realize I had when I married him. It's not for superficial reasons; I don't want him to start making money so I can quit my job and drink lattes with my girlfriends all day. That sounds terrible.
- Shortly after we got married I fell in love with and had an affair with a married man with whom I worked. We were "together" over two years, and talked about starting a life together, but ultimately he decided he did not want to leave his family (he has a young child, and has been with his wife for 20 years). I was devastated.
- The sexual problems with husband began a while BEFORE the affair, so while the affair didn't cause the problems, it did compound them.
- About seven months ago I got a job across the country and took it, partly because I hated my job and partly because I wanted to start over fresh with my husband from the married man. It hasn't worked, and I am still heartbroken. The other man still contacts me and wants me to be "part of his life," though he still won't leave his wife. I have maintained my no contact rule with him about 90% of the time, but I feel like I'm being manipulated from thousands of miles away, but it's still the closest I have to sexual excitement, which is pathetic. Why haven't I been able to shake this affair, after over seven months?
- I have suffered from chronic low-grade depression for at least 10 years
- I do still have sex with my husband, though it's infrequent, because I usually spurn his advances and put it off for as long as possible until I know that I pretty much need to. I don't want him to be unsatisfied. But I've tried the "fake it til you make it" approach and sometimes I feel like crying during sex. At this point I would encourage him to have an affair so that he could be sexually satisfied, because I feel horrible for depriving him. The sex isn't bad...in fact he thinks it's quite good...and when we do have it neither of us goes unsatisfied...I just don't WANT it with him and wish it was with someone else. Even though it's pretty good!
So, there it is. I do care for my husband a lot and think we still have the foundation for a great relationship, but for the most part I feel like a loveless, sexless shell of a woman. I know everyone will probably think I'm a horrible person, but what I really do want to do is figure this @%$# out so I can do the right thing. Enough stringing him (and myself) along. Has anyone else here stopped wanting sex with their spouse, and if so, were you able to remedy it? What is wrong with me? Should I just cut myself loose from both men and be alone?