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Crying

Guess there's no hope.

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Philip027

The guy just sounds completely exasperated on discussing the issue; he sounds like he's given up, hence why he keeps deferring to you.

I don't necessarily think it's a matter of being cruel or trying to be cruel. He just seems exasperated, like I said.

I have to address this, because it is a broad generalization and in more cases than not, possibly untrue...it is more than likely the opposite. I actually think many asexual people do know how important sex is to sexual people and that knowledge may even be how they know they aren't sexual. I am quite sure that even though sex may not be important to an asexual person, they are often aware of how important it is to sexual people.

I think what the case often is is that even if they can understand that it's important (to other people), they don't personally understand WHY. Which occasionally, by extension, can lead to a misjudging on just how important it is.

That's the boat I'm in, anyway.

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SlightlyOffKilter

Hey, it's Crying here. I thought those who kindly responded to my initial wail for help deserved an update.

We've been to a marriage counselor twice since the original post. I guess I didn't do counseling right, because I dumped out everything that I was upset about while the husband sat there reticent and glossing over things. He insists that he is not asexual, but just isn't as "into it" as I am. I said that he was so "not into it" that he lied and started fights to avoid it and said things like "Look, I'm doing the best I can! I can't perform every time you snap your fingers!", and the worst one, "So leave then."

My husband maintained that he was 'trying'. I said that hearing my husband had to "try" to be sexual with me wasn't encouraging. Clearly, the mutual desire I want isn't there, and who knows why? I don't, and I have a feeling that I will never really know.

The therapist said that our arguing wasn't going to help. Yes, I knew this to begin with. That is why I brought the argument to a counselor! I wanted the counselor to see the naked truth of what our relationship had become.

The recommendation is that my husband should continue therapy weekly and I should "sit in" once a month to check in. My husband liked this idea. I asked when I would get my concerns answered, and I was told that the monthly session would be for this purpose. I felt outraged. I feel like again, my concerns are being put on the back burner.

I was also asked why I was still with him. I told the truth, that I was still there because I'd hoped there was a reversible reason for his abrupt withdrawl, but the way things look, I'm only currently still here because leaving is more work and money than I can manage right now.

I realized from these two sessions that the marriage I'd expected and had every reason to expect doesn't exist and will not be happening. I don't know what the right thing to do would be. My choice is to put up with him as he is (yes, I did say that. I did not sign up to marry someone who did not like sex or feel desire for me, and I'm royally pissed and bitterly disappointed that this is who I got), or leave. It occurs to me that it does not matter what I want or what I deserve. Whatever it is that I deserve isn't available with this man. He sees no problem with this and wonders why I mind.

Oh well, Got fooled again, I did.

Anyway, there isn't much else to say. I don't know what the outcome will be, and it almost doesn't matter because any way it falls, I'm married to someone that I no longer like. How can I like someone who put me in this position and had all of these ridiculous ideas that I would just lose interest in sex once I had a ring on my hand? He blows hot and cold now, affectionate one day and harsh and shaking me off the next. He seems annoyed that I didn't get on board with the emotionless quarterly maintenance sex plan that he seems to believe comes after marriage.

Anyway, it is what it is. It sucks.

His lack of interest and harsh dismissal of my interest means that I pretty much better gear up for a break up. I was not expecting this. I really thought he loved me, and I don't mean in a platonic, asexual way. I did not marry to be serviced a few times a year by someone who can take it or leave it. This isn't the kind of relationship I want, and I'm furious about the bait and switch routine. If he couldn't maintain a sexual relationship, he owed it to me to say so before I was legally entangled. I'm no longer deluding myself that I can somehow create the relationship he pretended to be able to sustain. This is not to offend anybody, regardless of orientation. Addressing how others structure their relationships is not what this paragraph is about. I am watching my marriage fail because my husband pretended to be something he isn't, and the something he is leaves me devastated and bereft. The lack of mutual desire is a slap in the face. Horrible to think that I showed him genuine desire while he was just going through the motions ("well, I did what I had to to make you happy", he said. Had to??).

I don't think he loves me. Love does not entail dishonesty or trying to use harshness and humiliation to force me into acquiescing to his point of view that a proper marriage is sexless. Do I love him? Well, I loved who he claimed to be. I don't know who he actually is, so no, I'm not feeling any love for him right now, just sorrow and shame at being used.

I went out and got a new haircut and red hair color to feel less drab. Back to the drawing board. Peace, everybody.

I do not have any experience, nor will I pretend that I do. You can disregard this as you please, but I felt the need to at least say something. I'm sorry you have to deal with this. What your husband is putting you through isn't fair. It is definitely important to have this kind of stuff worked out, and from what you've said so far, you made it perfectly clear you wanted to maintain a sexual relationship. I am of the firm belief that what you want does matter. You may not be in the position to leave right now, but I think you should separate as soon as you are able, as difficult and painful as that is. The brunt of it is that your relationship doesn't sound good for either of you, what with his hot and cold attitude and your feelings not being properly addressed. Ultimately, it's your decision and I feel that if you are not happy with this, you should get out when you can. That way you both can find the meaningful relationships you want and deserve rather than compromising which can work for some couples but not all. No matter what, I believe you have the strength to come out of this battered, but okay.

I honestly wish you the best of luck. Take care and godspeed.

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Feral_Sophisticate

Hey, it's Crying here. I thought those who kindly responded to my initial wail for help deserved an update.

We've been to a marriage counselor twice since the original post. I guess I didn't do counseling right, because I dumped out everything that I was upset about while the husband sat there reticent and glossing over things. He insists that he is not asexual, but just isn't as "into it" as I am. I said that he was so "not into it" that he lied and started fights to avoid it and said things like "Look, I'm doing the best I can! I can't perform every time you snap your fingers!", and the worst one, "So leave then."

My husband maintained that he was 'trying'. I said that hearing my husband had to "try" to be sexual with me wasn't encouraging. Clearly, the mutual desire I want isn't there, and who knows why? I don't, and I have a feeling that I will never really know.

The therapist said that our arguing wasn't going to help. Yes, I knew this to begin with. That is why I brought the argument to a counselor! I wanted the counselor to see the naked truth of what our relationship had become.

The recommendation is that my husband should continue therapy weekly and I should "sit in" once a month to check in. My husband liked this idea. I asked when I would get my concerns answered, and I was told that the monthly session would be for this purpose. I felt outraged. I feel like again, my concerns are being put on the back burner.

I was also asked why I was still with him. I told the truth, that I was still there because I'd hoped there was a reversible reason for his abrupt withdrawl, but the way things look, I'm only currently still here because leaving is more work and money than I can manage right now.

I realized from these two sessions that the marriage I'd expected and had every reason to expect doesn't exist and will not be happening. I don't know what the right thing to do would be. My choice is to put up with him as he is (yes, I did say that. I did not sign up to marry someone who did not like sex or feel desire for me, and I'm royally pissed and bitterly disappointed that this is who I got), or leave. It occurs to me that it does not matter what I want or what I deserve. Whatever it is that I deserve isn't available with this man. He sees no problem with this and wonders why I mind.

Oh well, Got fooled again, I did.

Anyway, there isn't much else to say. I don't know what the outcome will be, and it almost doesn't matter because any way it falls, I'm married to someone that I no longer like. How can I like someone who put me in this position and had all of these ridiculous ideas that I would just lose interest in sex once I had a ring on my hand? He blows hot and cold now, affectionate one day and harsh and shaking me off the next. He seems annoyed that I didn't get on board with the emotionless quarterly maintenance sex plan that he seems to believe comes after marriage.

Anyway, it is what it is. It sucks.

His lack of interest and harsh dismissal of my interest means that I pretty much better gear up for a break up. I was not expecting this. I really thought he loved me, and I don't mean in a platonic, asexual way. I did not marry to be serviced a few times a year by someone who can take it or leave it. This isn't the kind of relationship I want, and I'm furious about the bait and switch routine. If he couldn't maintain a sexual relationship, he owed it to me to say so before I was legally entangled. I'm no longer deluding myself that I can somehow create the relationship he pretended to be able to sustain. This is not to offend anybody, regardless of orientation. Addressing how others structure their relationships is not what this paragraph is about. I am watching my marriage fail because my husband pretended to be something he isn't, and the something he is leaves me devastated and bereft. The lack of mutual desire is a slap in the face. Horrible to think that I showed him genuine desire while he was just going through the motions ("well, I did what I had to to make you happy", he said. Had to??).

I don't think he loves me. Love does not entail dishonesty or trying to use harshness and humiliation to force me into acquiescing to his point of view that a proper marriage is sexless. Do I love him? Well, I loved who he claimed to be. I don't know who he actually is, so no, I'm not feeling any love for him right now, just sorrow and shame at being used.

I went out and got a new haircut and red hair color to feel less drab. Back to the drawing board. Peace, everybody.

Actually, the counsellor's recommendation to have your husband seek the regular counselling, and you to sit in only on a monthly basis, is a good idea - and a sound therapeutic tactic. Before you get upset at me, however, please allow me to explain.

Your husband's reticence is the real "issue" here. Since that's the biggest stumbling block currently facing you, the therapist will need to delve into the source of his lack of interest or inability to "perform". The monthly "check in's" (which, based on the short time that has transpired, likely hasn't yet had the first event) are a good gauge for the therapist, and a means to ensure that they're on the right track, and to determine what (if any) impact the sessions are having in regards to the two of you. Additionally, it will give the therapist a chance to ascertain how you're holding up during all of this.

I get that you're upset at the situation. As a sexual person myself, I would likely feel the same way were I in a similar position. I would encourage you to bide your time, and give the therapist a chance to do their work. Allowing yourself to continue to be upset builds on the resentment, which feeds upon itself (and gets worse as time passes).

I do understand your being upset that your needs aren't being met by the counsellor, either. I would recommend that you either ask for individual sessions with the same counsellor, or ask them to recommend another that can help out. Some therapists aren't comfortable working with both partners in a relationship separately, and others are.

I would recommend two books to consider:

"Too Good To Leave, Too Bad To Stay: A Step-by-Step Guide to Help You Decide Whether to Stay In or Get Out of Your Relationship" by Mira Kirshenbaum is one book that I'd recommend, and one that might help you here.

Note, however, that if you think this relationship is untenable, and not worth trying to revive, there is nothing that you, your husband, or anyone else can do to change that very real fact.

I wish you the best of luck - and peace, with or without the relationship you are currently in.

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lissi

The thing to remember is that if he is asexual he is likely to have no idea about how important sex is to most people. When I say no idea I really mean none whatsoever. If you want some evidence of this please PM me and I will let you know of a thread elsewhere that demonstrates this. Not all asexuals are like the ones you see here. I think they have taken the time to understand their sexual partners and visa versa. Some honestly have no idea of the impact a sexuality can have on sexuals.

I have to address this, because it is a broad generalization and in more cases than not, possibly untrue...it is more than likely the opposite. I actually think many asexual people do know how important sex is to sexual people and that knowledge may even be how they know they aren't sexual. I am quite sure that even though sex may not be important to an asexual person, they are often aware of how important it is to sexual people.

I probably should not have used the word likely and instead said May not have any idea how important sex can be to others. I don't really know how common having no understanding is. I got the impression it was quite common from what I have read here. Either from direct references such as " I was a little confused because I couldmt understand why sex was quite so important", "at that point I didn't realise how important sex is for most people" or what I have inferred from what people have said like "only thing he has missed out on was a much sex as he would have liked", "could do it herself", "thought she would get fed up with it "etc. I appreciate it suits me to retain the belief that asexual may not understand the importance of sex to others. This way I can feel less angry about what my ex did and try to be kind in my dealings with him. I was simply trying to give Mr Crying the benefit of the doubt.

Some mixed couples don't have the same problems as others. Sometimes a compromise is made early on (even nonverbally) and the relationship is happy and healthy for both people. Other times, the couple struggles to find a compromise that each finds satisfying, but eventually do. There are also times when one or both people cannot find a comfortable middle ground and they decide to part ways. None of these situations is more or less indicative of either partner being oblivious to the other's needs.

I think a compromise reached non verbally can be problematic where one of the partners is oblivious to the compromise and the reason for it. The person who is ignorant regarding the arrangement may make all sorts of negative conclusions regarding the rejection of sexual advances and lack of initiation, particularly if they are unable, for whatever reason, to voice their feelings or their partner will not communicate. For example, feeling that they are not attractive enough, not successful enough etc to be desirable to the person they love. Feeling unworthy of love or even unable to leave (eg children, religious beliefs, beliefs about marriage) may leave them trapped in a very unhappy situation with their partner oblivious if they don't understand why sex is important. In my opinion, compromise that is openly negotiated is completely different.

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Lady Girl

It could be problematic for sure...I meant there are situations when it is not. I was specifically talking about people who are both happy.

I realize, as Phillip mentioned, that sometimes some asexual persons may not understand why it is so important, but to me that is different than not recognizing that it is.

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Sally

I realize, as Phillip mentioned, that sometimes some asexual persons may not understand why it is so important, but to me that is different than not recognizing that it is.

I think there's too much emphasis on understanding. We can't always understand how others feel but we can and should respect their feelings, especially if we're in a close relationship with them. That goes for sexuals and asexuals.

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Lady Girl

I realize, as Phillip mentioned, that sometimes some asexual persons may not understand why it is so important, but to me that is different than not recognizing that it is.

I think there's too much emphasis on understanding. We can't always understand how others feel but we can and should respect their feelings, especially if we're in a close relationship with them. That goes for sexuals and asexuals.

I personally can't help but want to understand better. That's why I've been on the site so long and read so many posts. I know I won't ever feel the same way my husband does, but I do think listening to the various feelings and descriptions contributes to understanding...and for me that contributes to respect.

I realize complete understanding usually includes being...I can at least attempt the knowledge portion of it. I think my husband has spent a lot of years trying to understand and accommodate my sexuality, it's the least I can do.

Overall though, I agree Sally...respect should be the first priority.

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Sally

I realize, as Phillip mentioned, that sometimes some asexual persons may not understand why it is so important, but to me that is different than not recognizing that it is.

I think there's too much emphasis on understanding. We can't always understand how others feel but we can and should respect their feelings, especially if we're in a close relationship with them. That goes for sexuals and asexuals.

I personally can't help but want to understand better. That's why I've been on the site so long and read so many posts. I know I won't ever feel the same way my husband does, but I do think listening to the various feelings and descriptions contributes to understanding...and for me that contributes to respect.

I realize complete understanding usually includes being...I can at least attempt the knowledge portion of it. I think my husband has spent a lot of years trying to understand and accommodate my sexuality, it's the least I can do.

Yeah, you're right, LG. I've just read too many threads where people say "I just can't understand why they feel that way!", which usually means they shouldn't feel that way.

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Lady Girl

I realize, as Phillip mentioned, that sometimes some asexual persons may not understand why it is so important, but to me that is different than not recognizing that it is.

I think there's too much emphasis on understanding. We can't always understand how others feel but we can and should respect their feelings, especially if we're in a close relationship with them. That goes for sexuals and asexuals.

I personally can't help but want to understand better. That's why I've been on the site so long and read so many posts. I know I won't ever feel the same way my husband does, but I do think listening to the various feelings and descriptions contributes to understanding...and for me that contributes to respect.

I realize complete understanding usually includes being...I can at least attempt the knowledge portion of it. I think my husband has spent a lot of years trying to understand and accommodate my sexuality, it's the least I can do.

Yeah, you're right, LG. I've just read too many threads where people say "I just can't understand why they feel that way!", which usually means they shouldn't feel that way.

I know, all too often it does sound that way. A great deal of any insight I have has come from you Sallycat. Thanks so much...from me and Mr. LG. :) :cake:

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WünderBâhr

I have been in relationships where I did not see eye to eye with my partners on what was an obvious sign of affection, or a normal expression of love toward your partner. Sometimes, it can be viewed as companionship, where you are simply there to experience life together and can turn to each other to say, "Did you see that, too?" Sometimes, people (such as myself) are drawn to the more romantic guestures: leaving little notes hoping they have a good day, or being considerate enough to buy something when you're at the store and think of what they would like, etc. They are little things, but they obviously mean something, because that is how you show your love in a non-sexual way. Have you spoken to him about how doing those things makes you feel, and how him dismissing or not noticing them affects the way you feel he perceives you/your actions?

From the bit of dialogue you shared, his words come across very irate and frustrated. I wonder if that is due to how quickly it seems for him to come to the conclusion that you want him to be the bad guy, or if it is something of a combination of past experiences mixed with the frustration both of you seem to be feeling over not being able to get on the same page... Or he may just be lashing out and being unfair and a real jerk (also entirely possible).

Understandably, if you two have completely different perspectives of what it means to be affectionate (not sexually), it will be extremely difficult to come to some sort of agreement on how to proceed. My last relationship was such that our differences pushed us apart; mainly because we were so focused on how great we felt together in other aspects that we didn't really consider whether or not we were compatible in what we considered appropriate expressions of affection within a relationship. It simply didn't come up because we both assumed what we felt for one another was good and that was enough.

I also have to say, I understand being frustrated and falling into the "you're only affectionate because/when you want sex" mentality. In a previous relationship, I began to resent my ex when he hugged me because it seemed when we would (it was a gradual increase) cuddle or hug, he would feel excited and take it as a sign that I wanted more physical, therefore sexual, intimacy, when really I just wanted a hug. He needed it more frequently than I did, but because of the failure to communicate on either side about the whys and hows of compromising, we just assumed that the other person wasn't being sensitive or caring to our needs. It not only pushed me away from him, but it made me angry and ready to be that bad guy just to end the continual feeling of obligation I felt burdened with that I didn't realize until later was partly just in my head.

Language is a tricky thing. Whether body language or spoken word, how it is interpreted on both sides makes a huge difference in the message that comes across. You may think you're saying "I care about you" and the other person may read it as "I did something nice, so you better do something nice back or you're a terrible person". Really speaks to individual experiences, but seeing how that can happen may help take a bit of the pressure off when situations end with a misunderstanding. Sometimes, no one is to blame; it is just circumstance.

I'm rambling at this point, but I hope coming to the site and being able to discuss this in thread gives you some relief, Crying. I may not know exactly what you are going through, not being a married sexual and all, but I sympathize and hope the best for you both.

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Percivel

I realize, as Phillip mentioned, that sometimes some asexual persons may not understand why it is so important, but to me that is different than not recognizing that it is.

I think there's too much emphasis on understanding. We can't always understand how others feel but we can and should respect their feelings, especially if we're in a close relationship with them. That goes for sexuals and asexuals.

I personally can't help but want to understand better. That's why I've been on the site so long and read so many posts. I know I won't ever feel the same way my husband does, but I do think listening to the various feelings and descriptions contributes to understanding...and for me that contributes to respect.

I realize complete understanding usually includes being...I can at least attempt the knowledge portion of it. I think my husband has spent a lot of years trying to understand and accommodate my sexuality, it's the least I can do.

Yeah, you're right, LG. I've just read too many threads where people say "I just can't understand why they feel that way!", which usually means they shouldn't feel that way.

I know, all too often it does sound that way. A great deal of any insight I have has come from you Sallycat. Thanks so much...from me and Mr. LG. :) :cake:

LG and company,

I have been on this site for three years and find the opinions and insight extremely helpful in my relationship with my wife. I would likely still be wallowing in pain and self-pity if it wasn't for my friends here...all of us in different stages of understanding and coping. You all have been a blessing. I thank you all, particularly those of you who remain involved after a long period of time. Because of our shared experiences I feel a special bond with you all. I feel like I could meet any one of you for the first time and give you a big hug.

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Crying

update:
This marriage may survive simply because I seem to have pretty much lost interest.

Given the barrier that exists, I just don't want to be bothered hoping for sex or working out a compromise or what have you. My expectation when we married was that sex would be the glue that made the relationship different from just being friends. I didn't marry to have a friend with whom I share cable TV, a mattress and laundry facilities. I expected a lover.

If it's really this much work for him, oh, why bother?

It;s a blow and a deep disappointment, but It's not possible to make a man want what he doesn't want.

He went to his first individual therapy session tonight. I made a chicken pot pie and then retreated to my craft room. He came home after his session complaining of a headache, ate dinner and is now watching TV upstairs. I was friendly, but didn't ask about his therapy session because I have decided to not be involved. I don't care how it went. Therapy is not something I've ever seen in a positive light anyway, so I just see this as more self-indulgence on his part. He can go if he wants to. I'm not going to the monthly check in sessions; clearly, those are just to placate me.

I just don't want to do this any more. We're not splitting up. I'm just checking out. He can have his therapist and his sacred celebacy. Eventually, I'll go.

Anyway, I've lost interest in t

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Sally
Percivel, on 25 Mar 2014 - 12:37 PM, said:

LG and company,

I have been on this site for three years and find the opinions and insight extremely helpful in my relationship with my wife. I would likely still be wallowing in pain and self-pity if it wasn't for my friends here...all of us in different stages of understanding and coping. You all have been a blessing. I thank you all, particularly those of you who remain involved after a long period of time. Because of our shared experiences I feel a special bond with you all. I feel like I could meet any one of you for the first time and give you a big hug.

You're pretty cool, Percivel. :cake::cake::cake:

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Mycroft is Yourcroft

My expectation when we married was that sex would be the glue that made the relationship different from just being friends. I didn't marry to have a friend with whom I share cable TV, a mattress and laundry facilities. I expected a lover.

I'm sorry, did you just say that without sex, the only relationship you have is one of 'just friends'? So, take what you have now ('just friends'), add sex, BAM you're committed lovers? What about shared love, mutual trust, companionship and relying on each other in times of need? All those other things that you need in a loving relationship?

Maybe you don't have those things either, in which case I apologise, but I hate it when some people seem to think that all you need is sex to be considered 'lovers'. To me, people who are 'just friends' who have sex sound like 'friends with benefits', as opposed to lovers in a committed relationship.

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Percivel

Crying is in a very hard place right now. A very dark and lonely place. Her thoughts, feelings and words are coming from that place. Most of us sexuals in mixed relationships are or have been in that place. As much as it is difficult for aces (and perhaps others) to hear, what we feel and say and think when we are there often doesn't make sense and can seem mean spirited or shallow. We don't know how to handle the bombardment of emotions and thoughts. We not only think crazy things but we often feel like we are going crazy. But, for the sexual who find themselves in that horrid place, these feelings and thoughts are very real.

Crying is expressing where she is. I think we should allow sexuals to do so. We often have no where else to go and vent and seek counsel and comfort...and understanding. Being in the closet alone with the boogey man...is a very difficult place to be. Outside of that dark closet , Crying could be a terrific loving person.

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Feral_Sophisticate

Crying, it saddens me that you're giving up on the counselling so early, but I'm not in your shoes, and I certainly can't judge the situation. Your decision makes sense and is logical to you. I just hope that you find that "better place" that you're seeking.

You have my sympathy, however. I've been in pretty dark places in past relationships (a failed marriage, and a subsequent relationship that lasted about one and a half years longer than it should have), and I know some of the pain you're going through. If you want to talk about it, my inbox is always open.

I will say this, though: if you're in a relationship where your primary needs are not being met, and you choose to stay in it without taking steps to resolve that, you are likely to end up resenting the relationship and the person you're in it with (if you don't already). Resenting your partner and your relationship with them is almost always a sure sign that the relationship itself is irreparable. Remaining in the situation is likely only going to cause you, your partner and your children more damage in the long run. If you have kids, they'll sense the tension, and they won't understand it. They will, though, model that as the "normal" state of how a relationship between husband and wife should be.

I'm not presuming to tell you what to do. I'm not your therapist. Even if I were, that decision isn't mine to make. What you do need to do, though, is some very honest soul searching. When my marriage collapsed, I obtained counselling, and read the book "Too Good to Leave, Too Bad to Stay: A Step-by-Step Guide to Help You Decide Whether to Stay In or Get Out of Your Relationship" by Mira Kirshenbaum. It helped me to determine what my real needs were, and to make peace with the decision I ended up making.

Like I said, my inbox is always open. I know your frustration, as I have been there before.

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sexualwife

I know exactly how crying feels. All the therapy in the world isn't going to change how her husband's brain is wired. It's just like you can't change gay people into straight people, or straight people into gay people. We are all born how we are sexually. You can't change someone who you suspect is asexual into a sexual person who desires sex and experiences sexual attraction. It just isn't ever going to be there, no matter how much therapy, testosterone or oxygen from a sleep apnea machine is used. Therapy may help you learn how to handle the situation and not go crazy, but you are going to have to live with the situation the rest of your life if that's what you choose to do. It's never going away. Every day, every week, every month, it will be something you will always struggle with. Some days are lots worse than others. Some of us just can't do that the rest of our lives and no one should attack us for that, just like no one should attack and riducule the person that chooses to live in that kind of relationship the rest of their life. We are not bad people because we choose to not live this way forever.

The sexual spectrum is very broad. It isn't cut and dried or black and white like we are all led to believe or grow up believing. If they would teach about the spectrum of sexuality in junior high and high schools, more people would understand all this and recognize it if they are supposedly asexual or are starting a relationship, or are in a relationship with a person they suspect could be asexual. At least people would be more educated and not end up surfing the web for answers on what could possibly be going on because the general public has not really ever heard of asexuality.

I too, feel like my husband's roommate. Without the sexual intimacy, I don't feel like a wife, a woman or even a sexual being anymore. I feel like a cook, maid, and caregiver. That may sound harsh, but when you ask a majority of people what they would consider a marriage without sexual intimacy is, most would say it's a companionship and friendship. Sexual intimacy is what most people consider the difference between just a friendship or roommate situation and a real marriage. I used to want to be with my husband years ago. I really, truly was in love with him and wanted to be with him in the worst way. He turned me down and diffused the situation so many times. It broke my heart. Many nights I lay in bed next to him with tears rolling down my face. Being ignored sexually for 10 years erased what I used to feel for him. I don't desire him anymore and I used to. I used to look at him as a man that I was attracted to, and I just can't anymore. I still love him, but not like a husband and wife love. I'm not in love with him anymore. Years ago, when I expressed my concern about the lack of intimacy in our marriage, he said he didn't know why it bothered me so, that he's always been this way and he's happy the way things are. I tried to tell him this wasn't normal for a husband and wife to not be intimate. For a husband to never want his wife sexually. He doesn't understand why it's so important to me and never will because he's never felt the way I do. He also thinks masturbation is rare because he's never done it. (We are in our 40's.) He doesn't want it, need it or desire it and couldn't care less if we never, ever are sexually intimate. Some spouses choose to live their lives this way forever for whatever their reasons may be. But for some of us, this just isn't a relationship. It's a friendship and roommate situation. My husband and I could have the same relationship if I lived elsewhere. We could still be friends. We could phone it in.

I have grown resentful of my husband as well, which is something Feral Sophisticate mentioned above, and I really hate that. But I resent the fact that he's so happy with our situation every day, and I'm strugging every day to deal with this on my own. Because he really doesn't care. He is getting everything he wants out of the relationship. We have tried compromise, which is basically him faking he wants to be with me, and then it's a disaster because it's impossible for him to connect the dots when he has absolutely no feelings for what he's doing. Sensual kisses are like pecks on the check, and he's constantly asking what he should do next and how he should do it. There's no flow, no instinct, nothing. He really has no idea what to do because there is no inner desire guiding him, and it's never, ever going to be there. It's really difficult to think of living this way forever when I've had relationships before where I felt connected to the guy, really connected. I want to feel that with my husband, but it's not going to be possible, and there's nothing anyone can ever do to change it.

-Sexualwife

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Sally

. It's really difficult to think of living this way forever when I've had relationships before where I felt connected to the guy, really connected. I want to feel that with my husband, but it's not going to be possible, and there's nothing anyone can ever do to change it.

-Sexualwife

Given everything you've said, I ask: why do you think that you have to live that way forever? Marriage is not a prison; you can leave.

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Serran

My expectation when we married was that sex would be the glue that made the relationship different from just being friends. I didn't marry to have a friend with whom I share cable TV, a mattress and laundry facilities. I expected a lover.

I'm sorry, did you just say that without sex, the only relationship you have is one of 'just friends'? So, take what you have now ('just friends'), add sex, BAM you're committed lovers? What about shared love, mutual trust, companionship and relying on each other in times of need? All those other things that you need in a loving relationship?

Maybe you don't have those things either, in which case I apologise, but I hate it when some people seem to think that all you need is sex to be considered 'lovers'. To me, people who are 'just friends' who have sex sound like 'friends with benefits', as opposed to lovers in a committed relationship.

Some people feel that without sex, no matter how close and how intimate the relationship is, it doesn't fill the gap that they need for a romantic relationship. Which, is a perfectly valid way to feel. My boyfriend thinks that unless sex is about 3-4 times a week at the LEAST, a relationship would be a friendship. Yes, even sex once a week would still be a friendship to him. Because it would not fill the romantic relationship gap he would have. Crying has the right to make the decision of what she needs for a relationship to feel like a romantic one for her. She did not say none of us aces could have a romantic relationship without sex, she just said HER relationship no longer feels like they are lovers to her. And she has every right to feel that way if a need is not being met.

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sexualwife

That is true. I can choose to stay forever or I can decide to leave. If I choose to stay, it is a forever situation. We all have to come to terms with that. It will never change. We are all allowed to vent and share our feelings on here aren't we? I'm sorry if I didn't say something you wanted to hear, however this is the area for Sexual Partners, Friends and Allies, correct? It would be nice if there wasn't so much attacking on here. We are all here for support and understanding and venting. Thank you.

-Sexualwife

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Sally

That is true. I can choose to stay forever or I can decide to leave. If I choose to stay, it is a forever situation. We all have to come to terms with that. It will never change. We are all allowed to vent and share our feelings on here aren't we? I'm sorry if I didn't say something you wanted to hear, however this is the area for Sexual Partners, Friends and Allies, correct? It would be nice if there wasn't so much attacking on here. We are all here for support and understanding and venting. Thank you.

-Sexualwife

Sexualwife, if you're referring to my question above, it was a serious question, not an attack. Since you have disclosed a lot about your marriage and it is obviously not giving what you want and need, I was wondering what reasons caused you to stay in it.

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Notte stellata

My expectation when we married was that sex would be the glue that made the relationship different from just being friends. I didn't marry to have a friend with whom I share cable TV, a mattress and laundry facilities. I expected a lover.

I'm sorry, did you just say that without sex, the only relationship you have is one of 'just friends'? So, take what you have now ('just friends'), add sex, BAM you're committed lovers? What about shared love, mutual trust, companionship and relying on each other in times of need? All those other things that you need in a loving relationship?

Maybe you don't have those things either, in which case I apologise, but I hate it when some people seem to think that all you need is sex to be considered 'lovers'. To me, people who are 'just friends' who have sex sound like 'friends with benefits', as opposed to lovers in a committed relationship.

Sometimes one's emotional reaction doesn't align with their intellectual knowledge. A sexual in a sexless relationship can intellectually know their partner loves them, but emotionally they still feel it's not really a romantic relationship due to the lack of sex.

I think one way to make it easier for asexuals to understand is to replace sex with cuddling (or other activities the asexual desires with a romantic partner): If cuddling is an important way for you to express love, but your partner constantly refuses to cuddle with you, you're likely to feel like "we're just friends" even though you know your partner loves you romantically (FYI, I don't like the "just friends vs. romantic partners" dichotomy, but that's beyond the scope of this thread). It's an irrational feeling that is hard to control.

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Feral_Sophisticate

My expectation when we married was that sex would be the glue that made the relationship different from just being friends. I didn't marry to have a friend with whom I share cable TV, a mattress and laundry facilities. I expected a lover.

I'm sorry, did you just say that without sex, the only relationship you have is one of 'just friends'? So, take what you have now ('just friends'), add sex, BAM you're committed lovers? What about shared love, mutual trust, companionship and relying on each other in times of need? All those other things that you need in a loving relationship?

Maybe you don't have those things either, in which case I apologise, but I hate it when some people seem to think that all you need is sex to be considered 'lovers'. To me, people who are 'just friends' who have sex sound like 'friends with benefits', as opposed to lovers in a committed relationship.

Sometimes one's emotional reaction doesn't align with their intellectual knowledge. A sexual in a sexless relationship can intellectually know their partner loves them, but emotionally they still feel it's not really a romantic relationship due to the lack of sex.

I think one way to make it easier for asexuals to understand is to replace sex with cuddling (or other activities the asexual desires with a romantic partner). If cuddling is an important way for you to express love, but your partner constantly refuses to cuddle with you, you're likely to feel like "we're just friends" even though you know your partner loves you romantically (FYI, I don't like the "just friends vs. romantic partners" dichotomy, but that's beyond the scope of this thread). It's an irrational feeling that is hard to control.

How my ace girl and I replace sex is we indulge in fetish play - we're both kinky people, and it works out for us both.

I can live without sex, as I have intimacy from her in other ways. However, I can easily understand how others here would think differently, as I've been in similar situations in the past, when in previous relationships.

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Sally

I wonder if this could be considered, by both sexual and asexual members:

Sexual partner feels that asexual partner is refusing to have sex with them.

Asexual partner feels that sexual partner is refusing to have a relationship without sex.

They each feel the other is "refusing" something that they need.

I think that's not a case where either is refusing anything. They are just very different, and the relationship just doesn't work.

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Sally

I wonder if this could be considered, by both sexual and asexual members:

Sexual partner A feels that asexual partner B is refusing to have sex with them (because some sexuals need TO have sex).

Asexual partner B feels that sexual partner A is refusing to have a relationship without sex (because some asexuals need to NOT have sex).

They each feel the other is "refusing" something that they need.

I think that's not a case where either is refusing anything. They are just very different, and the relationship just doesn't work.

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Feral_Sophisticate

I wonder if this could be considered, by both sexual and asexual members:

Sexual partner A feels that asexual partner B is refusing to have sex with them (because some sexuals need TO have sex).

Asexual partner B feels that sexual partner A is refusing to have a relationship without sex (because some asexuals need to NOT have sex).

They each feel the other is "refusing" something that they need.

I think that's not a case where either is refusing anything. They are just very different, and the relationship just doesn't work.

Well, if that's the case, then since fundamental needs aren't being met, the relationship can't possibly work.

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Sally

I wonder if this could be considered, by both sexual and asexual members:

Sexual partner A feels that asexual partner B is refusing to have sex with them (because some sexuals need TO have sex).

Asexual partner B feels that sexual partner A is refusing to have a relationship without sex (because some asexuals need to NOT have sex).

They each feel the other is "refusing" something that they need.

I think that's not a case where either is refusing anything. They are just very different, and the relationship just doesn't work.

Well, if that's the case, then since fundamental needs aren't being met, the relationship can't possibly work.

I should have made clear that I wasn't talking about myself, or any specific case. I was just reflecting that in problems in mixed relationships, it doesn't help for either party to be upset that the other is refusing to meet their needs -- because neither party's needs are being met.

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Feral_Sophisticate

I wonder if this could be considered, by both sexual and asexual members:

Sexual partner A feels that asexual partner B is refusing to have sex with them (because some sexuals need TO have sex).

Asexual partner B feels that sexual partner A is refusing to have a relationship without sex (because some asexuals need to NOT have sex).

They each feel the other is "refusing" something that they need.

I think that's not a case where either is refusing anything. They are just very different, and the relationship just doesn't work.

Well, if that's the case, then since fundamental needs aren't being met, the relationship can't possibly work.

I should have made clear that I wasn't talking about myself, or any specific case. I was just reflecting that in problems in mixed relationships, it doesn't help for either party to be upset that the other is refusing to meet their needs -- because neither party's needs are being met.

The situation seemed hypothetical, and I answered it as such. I wasn't assuming that you were referring to your relationship, or anyone else's. :)

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Crying

My expectation when we married was that sex would be the glue that made the relationship different from just being friends. I didn't marry to have a friend with whom I share cable TV, a mattress and laundry facilities. I expected a lover.

I'm sorry, did you just say that without sex, the only relationship you have is one of 'just friends'? So, take what you have now ('just friends'), add sex, BAM you're committed lovers? What about shared love, mutual trust, companionship and relying on each other in times of need? All those other things that you need in a loving relationship?

Maybe you don't have those things either, in which case I apologise, but I hate it when some people seem to think that all you need is sex to be considered 'lovers'. To me, people who are 'just friends' who have sex sound like 'friends with benefits', as opposed to lovers in a committed relationship.

Yes, I did say that. What I need in my relationship isn't for you to judge. Too bad if you " hate it when some people seem to think that all you need is sex to be considered 'lovers". It's none of your business to try to define for me what characteristics are important in a committed relationship in which you are not involved. What you "hate" doesn't apply to my life or to anyone's but your own. Saying "I apologise" before offering your judgement about what makes a relationship for somebody else doesn't make it any less snarky and superior.

"Shared love, mutual trust, companionship, relying on each other in times of need" are components of a strong friendship. I have those things with my best friend, a female I met when I was a single parent. We certainly are not lovers, nor do we wish to be. She's a friend. Queen made a great song about friendship called "My Best Friend". The lyrics describe exactly the traits you mentioned in your post.

If you want to be married to a friend, fine, but I don't and it's my life and my needs I'm discussing here.

Crying, it saddens me that you're giving up on the counselling so early, but I'm not in your shoes, and I certainly can't judge the situation. Your decision makes sense and is logical to you. I just hope that you find that "better place" that you're seeking.

You have my sympathy, however. I've been in pretty dark places in past relationships (a failed marriage, and a subsequent relationship that lasted about one and a half years longer than it should have), and I know some of the pain you're going through. If you want to talk about it, my inbox is always open.

I will say this, though: if you're in a relationship where your primary needs are not being met, and you choose to stay in it without taking steps to resolve that, you are likely to end up resenting the relationship and the person you're in it with (if you don't already). Resenting your partner and your relationship with them is almost always a sure sign that the relationship itself is irreparable. Remaining in the situation is likely only going to cause you, your partner and your children more damage in the long run. If you have kids, they'll sense the tension, and they won't understand it. They will, though, model that as the "normal" state of how a relationship between husband and wife should be.

I'm not presuming to tell you what to do. I'm not your therapist. Even if I were, that decision isn't mine to make. What you do need to do, though, is some very honest soul searching. When my marriage collapsed, I obtained counselling, and read the book "Too Good to Leave, Too Bad to Stay: A Step-by-Step Guide to Help You Decide Whether to Stay In or Get Out of Your Relationship" by Mira Kirshenbaum. It helped me to determine what my real needs were, and to make peace with the decision I ended up making.

Like I said, my inbox is always open. I know your frustration, as I have been there before.

Thank you for the understanding and kind words.

The apathy I feel right now will likely shift at some point. It's a peaceful place to have lost interest and not feel the sadness and pain of rejection. Right now, my head is at the "Ok, this didn't work." stage. I am not in any rush to make big life changes, so I'm biding my time, concentrating on my schoolwork, the delightful babies of my daughter (I don't call them grandchildren...I don't like to define my life by another person's choices), my crafting, etc.

That I didn't get the kind of sexual relationship I wanted is agonizing, but it's not all of who he is. He's a hard worker, pleasant, kind and cheerful company in other areas of life. My daughter's children LOVE the man that they think is their grandfather. My daughter's real father is not in her life at all, and their father's father passed away many years ago, so this is the only grandfather that the little ones have. They are young enough to not remember a time without him, and run to him screaming "Grandpa, Grandpa!". He picks them up and throws them into the air, then sits on the floor playing trains and blocks for literal hours. He has taught our fatherless son-in-law how to repair cars and landscape; he and my daughter/son in law often have video gaming contests. I delight in and am grateful for his relationship with my daughter and her family.

The dark spot is the sexual rejection. It's the only area about which he seems to go into a Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde mode in which he is mean, argumentative, hurtful and spiteful. When the issue comes up, he often gets emotionally abusive, yelling at me and making nutty accusations that I can't even address like "All you care about is fucking!" and "You don't really want answers. You just want to make me uncomfortable!" WTF?

It royally sucks and I may not hang around forever. For right now, it would create too much turmoil for too many people (including me) to upend everyone's life and put myself into financial peril by breaking up just to make a statement. I'm keeping myself busy and distancing from him emotionally. I consider him a roommate and lifemate, but the feeling of being in love with him is gone. Whether or not I love him at all is up in the air. I wouldn't like to see any harm come to him, nor do I have a wish to 'get back at him' in any way. He's a friend, with whom I have a contract. That's as clear as I can get.

As for therapy, I never liked it and never saw the benefit for me personally. I started therapy with him because I wanted answers from him. I told the therapist on the first visit that I wanted twice weekly sessions because we were at such a painful place. I never got that...the therapist said more than once a week would put too much pressure on the relationship. By the third session, I was told I'd only get the monthly check ins because HE needed therapy without me. So kicking me out wouldn't put too much pressure on the relationship? The therapist asked if I agreed with it. I said I did not, but the husband wanted it, and got his way. I'm the outsider now both in the marriage and the therapy sessions.

I was disgusted at how that backfired. I initiated couple's therapy, asked for twice a week, and ended up getting pushed out and told I would be allowed in once a month. I was offered my own sessions if I wanted that. I don't. If I wanted my own therapy, that's what I would have initiated. Nothing to be done about it, so I washed my hands of it and bartered for an embroidery machine to add to my collection of fabric craft tools. I'm learning to machine embroider, putting my energy into creating something beautiful instead of wondering how I ended up married to a man who prefers to avoid sex.

He does like to cuddle. I'm not interested in that any more. It makes me long for sexual expression, makes me want to feel wanted, and no, I'm just not doing that to myself. I guess that's his compromise. Maybe he's on some board somewhere lamenting his unaffectionate wife.

I'm in the craft room right now. The little girls are here for the weekend. I can hear the music from their little voices making their toy people talk in the doll houses. My husband is making a fresh pot of coffee. Good. I could use a cup.

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WhenSummersGone

My expectation when we married was that sex would be the glue that made the relationship different from just being friends. I didn't marry to have a friend with whom I share cable TV, a mattress and laundry facilities. I expected a lover.

I'm sorry, did you just say that without sex, the only relationship you have is one of 'just friends'? So, take what you have now ('just friends'), add sex, BAM you're committed lovers? What about shared love, mutual trust, companionship and relying on each other in times of need? All those other things that you need in a loving relationship?

Maybe you don't have those things either, in which case I apologise, but I hate it when some people seem to think that all you need is sex to be considered 'lovers'. To me, people who are 'just friends' who have sex sound like 'friends with benefits', as opposed to lovers in a committed relationship.

Yes, I did say that. What I need in my relationship isn't for you to judge. Too bad if you " hate it when some people seem to think that all you need is sex to be considered 'lovers". It's none of your business to try to define for me what characteristics are important in a committed relationship in which you are not involved. What you "hate" doesn't apply to my life or to anyone's but your own. Saying "I apologise" before offering your judgement about what makes a relationship for somebody else doesn't make it any less snarky and superior.

"Shared love, mutual trust, companionship, relying on each other in times of need" are components of a strong friendship. I have those things with my best friend, a female I met when I was a single parent. We certainly are not lovers, nor do we wish to be. She's a friend. Queen made a great song about friendship called "My Best Friend". The lyrics describe exactly the traits you mentioned in your post.

If you want to be married to a friend, fine, but I don't and it's my life and my needs I'm discussing here.

I'd like to hear your difference between friends with benefits and someone you would marry?

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