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Traveler40

“Overwhelming Advice”

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Traveler40

I have been spending a bit of time reading thoughts over at ILIASM and came across a repost that jarred me to my core.  I’m so profoundly sad seeing it laid out like this, but also lost in thought over it. I’m currently at conclusion 9.

 

Given the value I found in her words, I repost it here. 

 

There was an attached link that I can’t get to work, but include it as well. Apparently, this is an “oldie but a goodie” written by Enna.  

 

http://www.experienceproject.com/stories/Live-In-A-Sexless-Marriage/3661509

 

"The Overwhelming Advice Is To Cheat Or Leave" This story was written in response to a statement in a recent post. That statement is:

 

"The overwhelming advice is to cheat or leave".

 

“What it comes down to is this:

 

when you reach the point where you can no longer tolerate being in a sexless relationship, then you will seriously consider leaving. Until that point is reached you will be exactly like the rest of us - trying to make it work. Most of us remain in our sexless marriages for many years (decades in many instances) trying to make our relationships work - with or without sex.

 

At some point many of us come to the following conclusions:

 

1) there is a fundamental issue of equity, trust and love at the heart of this situation. If your spouse refuses to have sex with you and you have not reached this decision by mutual agreement, then he/she is holding you hostage to his/her version of marriage. It is not one you signed up for. It is not one you agreed to. It is not a decision that makes you happy. It is not part of the agreed covenant of marriage. It is a personal decision, made AND implemented by your spouse alone.

 

All of this highlights the fact that your spouse has put his/herself as the priority in what should be a MUTUAL relationship. How do you continue to trust and to love someone who prioritises him/herself above their partner at all times? How do you trust and love someone who, in effect, says to you every day of your life "Your needs are not important to me"?

 

How can you feel you are truly equal in a relationship where you have no say in something as crucial; and personal as your intimate life?

 

2) once you start really thinking about this, you may become aware that your spouse is controlling in other ways. He/she may be controlling of money, of decision making, of your combined social life - or any other factors in your life.

 

Often this is hard to see because your spouse APPEARS to be cooperative about your decisions on many occasions. If you study this closely you will see that this is because those decisions do NOT impact on him/her. For example: He is quite happy for you to meet your girlfriends for coffee - but he is reluctant to take you to dinner when you want to go out. She is happy to cook you your favourite meal - but she will not agree to you inviting friends around.

 

When you look closely at this, you may find other instances that reflect this control - such as: he buys you expensive gifts - but does not agree to the purchase of something you actually want. She insists on entertaining your friends - but acts as a martyr to ensure you know just how much EFFORT she is going to.

 

3) as for sex, you come to gradually realise that it is not just intercourse that is missing from the menu. Very often it is hand-holding, kissing, hugging, tender talking to each other - all sorts of intimate connections have been replaced by mundane interactions. These mundane interactions are fine - for room-mates. But the absence of intimacy and closeness takes a severe toll on a marriage.

 

You start realising that he/she is actually uncomfortable with intimacy. The kisses resemble those your aunt gives you. Hand-holding is seen as "not appropriate" - both in public and in private. Your chances of cuddling on the couch have disappeared because you each sit in your "own" chair . . . . 

 

Any attempt by you to talk about the issue is ignored, deflected or raises your spouse's ire.

 

4) at this stage, you start earnestly seeking the “why” for this situation. Is he gay? Was she sexually abused as a child? Are you not skinny enough? Pretty enough? Wealthy enough? Is your penis too short? Are you not exciting enough between the sheets? You explore all sorts of possible remedies. Some of these verge on the ridiculous and others may be well outside your comfort zone. But your zeal to “fix” things knows no bounds – so you valiantly try everything you can think of. 

 

To no avail. And your spouse will not or cannot tell you what is “wrong”. Often, the response from the Refuser spouse is violent anger or cold and deliberate silence.

 

5) because you are NOT the “sort of person who gives up too easily”, you decide to “make the best of it”. You decide it is “only sex” and that you can and will live without it. You become very involved in anything and everything that can distract you from what is missing in your private life. Work becomes all consuming. You might decide to do that deferred degree too . . . . If you are a parent, you become very involved in your children's lives. Your preferred sports or hobbies become spheres of excellence in your life because you devote so much time to them. Or you are a wonderful community member- giving so freely of your time and energy to the community.

 

6) unfortunately, the absence of sex and of intimacy is a need we cannot (in most cases) successfully deny forever. Once in a while we explode with our spouses about the subject. Our spouses will then have sex with us (reset sex) and promise to "try harder" in the future. Because we yearn for this to be true we readily accept this - even when time and again it fails to happen. And we overlook the fact that it should NOT be necessary, in a healthy marriage, to have to "try harder" to be intimate with one's spouse!!

 

So we go back to "coping" and gradually become disillusioned all over again.

 

7) at some point in our lives we begin to recognise the true reality of our situation. We understand that we are NEVER again going to have intimacy (not "just sex") with another person. That our spouse has chosen for us. That our spouse has unilaterally decided that we will never experience the true joys of marriage.

 

At this point many of think: "Well, if I could just have sex in my life, I could stay in this marriage." And that is when we begin to think of outsourcing. Some of us actually do outsource. And it can be a successful option for some people - but it does not often fulfill the fundamental NEED that is missing from our lives.

 

Because this is NOT "just about sex". It is about a loving, respectful equal relationship that is characterised by intimacy. That is what a marriage should be. 

 

Outsourcing often HIGHLIGHTS this absence more than anything else could. 

 

8) so, we have finally reached the point where we realise that this is NOT "just about sex". That we are living a lie. That we have been coerced into a life NOT of our choosing. That our marriage is dysfunctional at its core - no matter how it might look on the surface.

 

Many of us take a LONG time to work through the journey to this point. It is common to read here on ILIASM about people who took two, three or even four decades of marriage before they could finally admit this truth to themselves.

 

9) once we recognise and accept the reality of our situations, it becomes our decision what to do. Many choose to stay - and each person has his/her own reasons for this. No-one here will criticise anyone who makes a genuine CHOICE to stay. ILIASMers will challenge posters to think very carefully before making ANY decision - but especially the one "to stay". Because many of us know the toll that living against our basic needs takes on us.

 

When you choose to stay (as opposed to the earlier stages, where essentially, you are still in the "denial" or "bargaining" phases) you decide to live the rest of your life in a way that is NOT fulfilling your normal and natural needs. This can lead to ill health - physical and / or mental. It can lead to feelings of anger, frustration, resentment, hopelessness and other emotions that negatively impact not only you - but your spouse as well. It can negatively impact others in the family - such as your children.

 

These feelings are not easily denied or suppressed. You cannot "refuse" to acknowledge these feelings - they will not abate or disappear just because they are inconvenient . . . . . 

 

10) ultimately, some of us decide to do the one thing we have most been dreading and trying to avoid. We leave. We recognise that it takes courage, strength of will, energy and many other qualities to do this - and we sincerely doubt our own ability to achieve this outcome. But we do find the strength from somewhere. . . 

 

The leaving is almost always the hardest thing we have ever done - or certainly one of the hardest. Not only have we needed to reverse our own thinking but we have to turn our backs on everything we have tried to do for years. We have to give up on a dream. We have to leave someone we love. We have to make a new life for ourselves - often at a time in our lives when we would normally expect to be reaping the benefits of our earlier years of effort.

 

We face criticism and condemnation from friends and family. We usually refrain from publicising our spouse's inadequacies to the world at large, so many people we know are bewildered by our choice to leave our "perfect" marriages.

 

We suffer enormous guilt over “breaking up the family” – a guilt many Refuser spouses are only too happy to capitalise on.

 

The view from beyond:

 

Once we have left we almost all realise it was the best decision for ourselves – and probably for others in our family too. 

 

We recognise increasingly that we did not leave our marriages over “just sex” – that sex was a symptom of the dysfunction, not the cause.

 

We understand that what might look to others like the “easy way” is actually the hardest thing we have ever done. But that we would do it again, because it was NECESSARY for us to live our lives.

 

We go forward with hope in our hearts – although the future is terrifying in many ways. But we know that THIS time, we will craft our own future and not be confined to the future someone else has imposed on us against our will.

 

Pain and regret are never entirely absent. We grieve the “what might have beens”. We wish our spouses could have at least TRIED to meet us half-way. We wish we did not have to suffer so deeply in order to have what seems to the birth-right of others – a healthy future. We deeply regret the effects on our children - both of staying and of leaving.

 

Above all we recognise that we only have ONE life – and we must live as our authentic selves if that life is to have any genuine meaning.“

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Traveler40

I understand the above is from the SEXUAL viewpoint alone.  There is no accounting for asexuality as a cause or any reason behind the “why” for the marriage being sexless.  It’s a thought piece on someone’s journey with whom I generally identify.  

 

Mixed marriages are tough.  Just as asexuality is an orientation, so is being sexual.  As a sexual wife in a mixed marriage, the struggles of that post are ones I’ve grappled with and felt the value of her words worth reposting.  I also hope it does not offend the masses. 😬

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SusannaC

Incredibly accurate and painful description of the many years of marriage- for me.  Except to this day I choose to stay.  Fear, guilt, shame, love of my family (yes, my spouse too) keep me around.  Thank you for for sharing

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Traveler40

I also choose to stay and am at #9.  What breaks my heart is that apparently there’s no shielding the kids.  My kids are my life and no matter what I do or how this turns out, they have been, are and will be affected.  That’s what has me preoccupied this morning.

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SusannaC

Should not offend.... hurt to hear stated so clearly, but not offend.  Some partners may disagree and say that their marriage is wonderful in ALL other ways..... but i believe the lack of sex & desired and NEEDED intimacy, for most sexuals has a profound effect on many other aspects of life as mentioned.  

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SusannaC

Not sure how they are impacted, i suppose it’s an individual situation.   My boys saw me very sad and troubled for many years.  Sad but couldn’t talk about it- to them of course or anyone!   My thinly veiled resentment towards my spouse was noted by all, Im  sure.  But things have been better, lighter in last few years.  Finding acceptance and a true outlet for my needs helped greatly.  They are older too which makes everything a bit better

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AceMissBehaving

I can certainly understand the pain in these words, and honestly feel bad for everyone struggling in this way. I also feel like an interloper posting, but one thing here felt deeply hurtful.

 

The idea that the other person acts how they do deliberately, and as an act of control. That makes it sound like the suffering is caused as a calculated pattern of abuse, which assuming this is a ace/allo relationship being talked about, seems rather unfair.

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Traveler40

I see your point and do not agree it’s calculated or deliberate many times. I sincerely did not intend to hurt anyone AMB and realized it might after reposting thus my follow on comment.

 

I was thinking on the general content holding true from my experience and perspective as a sexual wife married to a man that still does not identify as asexual.  

 

Intent and outcome can be vastly different given perspective as well.  That is one woman’s journey with whom I identify.  My husband is not controlling in the least, but her husband clearly was.  It’s not holding 100% true, but generally accurate.

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NickJ

This is tough, I can relate to a lot of what I read here. I can certainly relate the the anger and the guilt, and ultimately a need to want to keep everyone happy, but failing miserably at all those things.

 

My wife has always tried to accommodate my needs, but our biggest issue historically has been my inability to communicate the depth of those needs, or the effect the situation was having on me. I can't blame her for any of that. And yet that anger, baseless and directionless as it is still exists. I have no idea how to deal with it. Any of it. Our current polyamorous compromise helps, but now I spend most of my time failing miserably to balance even more peoples' needs. It's hard for everyone.

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uhtred

Doesn't match in all ways, but yes its pretty accurate for me. 

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uhtred
Just now, NickJ said:

This is tough, I can relate to a lot of what I read here. I can certainly relate the the anger and the guilt, and ultimately a need to want to keep everyone happy, but failing miserably at all those things.

 

My wife has always tried to accommodate my needs, but our biggest issue historically has been my inability to communicate the depth of those needs, or the effect the situation was having on me. I can't blame her for any of that. And yet that anger, baseless and directionless as it is still exists. I have no idea how to deal with it. Any of it. Our current polyamorous compromise helps, but now I spend most of my time failing miserably to balance even more peoples' needs. It's hard for everyone.

Having a partner who doesn't believe its important is a huge part or the problem.   

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NickJ
7 minutes ago, uhtred said:

Having a partner who doesn't believe its important is a huge part or the problem.   

To be fair to her, she tries to understand, and she realises it's important to me. She just doesn't really get it because her needs are very different. And historically, I haven't been very good at telling her.


Also worth considering, I think some of my own inability to communicate those needs had more to do with that whole "it's only sex" and a degree of shame for having those needs. Which is silly because she's never been in the least bit judgmental. 

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Telecaster68

ILIASM - I Live In A Sexless Marriage - was a collection of experiences of partners of people who don't want to have sex for many reasons, not just because they're asexual, which is where some of the implications about motive come from. The effects on the partner who does want sex are largely the same though. 

 

If our partners are asexual, then it's still the case that there's something more important to them than their sexual partner's happiness - their own orientation. There's nothing wrong with that, after all sexual partners are loathe to compromise their orientation too, but it does mean that one partner is putting their own, profound, wellbeing over their partner's. 

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TimeDelay

I found my way to ILIASM a couple of days after finding my way here; a few short weeks ago. I alternate between the two forums because I find myself feeling like a misfit on both. I also find myself growing frustrated with both as well at times so I flick back over to the other or take a complete break. My husband has shown all the 'signs' of asexuality for his whole life yet cannot decide he is and admits to believing that perhaps if he met someone else she might inspire him to feel what he does not feel for me i.e. the desire to have sex/touch/kiss etc. However, he also says that the love he feels for me is so strong that it should count for something. IF he is truly asexual then yes, I agree with the latter; the type of love felt by an asexual while different to that of a sexual like me SHOULD count for something, it should be valued. Sadly, valuing different types of love within a relationship does not solve the problems caused directly by a mismatch in physical/emotional needs. Even more sadly, the lying by omission that my husband and seemingly many others engage in only contributes more pain and confusion to an already challenging relationship. The more I understand about asexuality the more strongly I feel about this. The full range of sexual orientations needs to be brought out into the light. I am doing what I can for my own family by encouraging their self awareness at least and showing them they will be loved no matter 'what' they are. AVEN has helped me in that, despite the number of times I want to yell at some posts here.

Meanwhile, over on ILIASM, I find the humour refreshing (sorry aven peeps but I need to laugh sometimes, even if y'all think it's inappropriate). What I find less appealing about over there is the very definite lack of value given to that other type of love I mentioned.  We all need safe spaces to express ourselves and ILIASM does provide that for those of us struggling in our sexless marriages.  While many members offer very sound advice and can be encouraging the over riding message is 'this is never going to work well for both parties'. A sexual person married to a 'refuser' will NEVER find happiness in that marriage. Hence that long list of numbered stages in the OP above. That list could be applied to my own journey too. I have terrible days and nights where I wonder if my body is ever going to run out of tears but call me 'in denial' or just plain crazy but I'm not ready to quit just yet. I believe there are important stages missing from that list. What if one of us, or a combination of us, are meant to write them in?

 

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Telecaster68
7 minutes ago, TimeDelay said:

on ILIASM, I find the humour refreshing

Me too. AVEN has such a range of sensitive souls to allow for that more or less any joke based on an underlying truth will offend someone or other. And (almost) every statement has to be qualified to avoid being dragged off down a rabbit warren of theoretically logical but actually non existent exceptions.

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Traveler40
1 hour ago, TimeDelay said:

but I'm not ready to quit just yet. 

And that was the take away from my time over at ILIASM - I felt quite the opposite of humor.  It seems as though Chicken Littles abound.  I can’t solely go all doom and gloom as the value for the “other” parts of love is there for me as well.

 

My husband is a deeply good and wonderful man.  He loves me, and I love and respect him. He would die for any one of us and truly supports the family through thick and thin.  He is exceptional, if not so for me in all ways.

 

The merry-go-round continues.  There are no good or clear answers.  In time, the peace of limbo has worked and is only possible due to the two men in my life.  They work together to keep “it” together from all angles.  There’s a lot of love, and no real solution. I don’t want to face anything beyond #9.  I’d like to stay in limbo for as long as it will carry us, and I don’t want to become embittered or resentful. There has been some of that on occasion, but it crops up in discussions mainly.  We value our even keeled, generally peaceful Union.

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TimeDelay

I do feel resentful at times but I don't want that to become all I feel toward the man I married. I chose him after all so I have to own that decision too. Like you @Traveler40 I am concerned for my children and how this will all unfold and possibly harm them. I firmly believe though that children take their cue from the adults around them. It sounds like your kids are surrounded by mature loving adults so they will be okay, if you are. It sounds like you have found this too @SusannaC?  We have a daughter who has been questioning her sexuality since puberty and says now she identifies as Pan. I talk to her about the various people she meets up with at the lgbtq+ centre she goes to. I've openly expressed interest in asexuality and we chat about how important it is to be open and self aware for ones own sake but just as much for the sake of potential partners into the future. My children are all different, with varying levels of extro/introversion. My youngest said the other day how she can see where they will all end up; living in their own little houses next door to each other "and daddy moving into his own wee house in the garden". Out of the mouths of babes..They really do get how much some people need their own space and quiet time more than others so the concept of living beside but not always with the person you love makes sense to them! The younger ones have been listening to their older sister lecture us all on acceptance and social norms and the patriarchy for a few years now so they have already been exposed to so much more than my husband and I ever were 😉 This is a changed world they are growing up in, thank goodness imo. On good days, I am hopeful we can find a way to live happily in a very different kind of life to the one I imagined. 

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SusannaC

Love, but no clear and perfect solution.   That about sums it up

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Sally
8 hours ago, Telecaster68 said:

If our partners are asexual, then it's still the case that there's something more important to them than their sexual partner's happiness - their own orientation. 

Nope -- their own bodies.  

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AceMissBehaving
3 hours ago, Sea horse said:

I just could not stay with a person who felt this way about me. 

I just couldn't stay with a person who felt this way about me...This is really hurtful to read. I was in a 'mixed' relationship and left because of the level of anger and resentment directed at me, I certainly wasn't deliberately causing harm to my partner and tried really hard to meet his needs. I didn't know I was asexual until a few days ago, but now I understand what happened much more, and I'm even more certain that my decision was the right one. Hopefully he has found happiness elsewhere. 

*edit - what he's actually doing is still trying to manipulate me into sex. And when I say no, calling me a gaslighter and manipulative. I've blocked him on my phone (we've been split up for 5 years now). It feels like he's going to hang around forever resenting me for not wanting sex with him and calling me names. I've so had enough of it all now. 

That’s incredibly toxic behavior. You were definitely right to get out, though it’s worrying he’s still persisting in harassing you.

 

And yeah, the resentment is upsetting, I’m sorry to hear it’s something you’re still dealing with even after ending the relationship.

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Guest
15 minutes ago, AceMissBehaving said:

That’s incredibly toxic behavior. You were definitely right to get out, though it’s worrying he’s still persisting in harassing you.

 

And yeah, the resentment is upsetting, I’m sorry to hear it’s something you’re still dealing with even after ending the relationship.

I am glad I got out, but he was so upset when I did that I didn't even have the heart to cut off contact at first, although I wanted to...I still felt responsible for his needs even after I left (and this was after he'd repeatedly told me to get out of the house for over a week). One very marked belief of my husband was that I was there to meet his needs. He had a traditional family upbringing; his mother didn't work and her role was to serve his father and look after the kids. He encouraged me to give up work and I ended up financially dependent on him. My daughter summed up our relationship as follows: 'You had different beliefs. He believed that you should do everything he said, and you didn't agree with that.' 

 

He had a very high libido and even he admitted that this was the case in comparison to others. And it was all linked to his view that I was there mainly to meet his needs. He didn't see me as a person in my own right.

 

I've been around enough couples (particularly mothers) to know that sex drops off after a few years together, I always hear them joking 'Oh no we don't have sex - we've been married for 10 years!' and it clearly isn't a source of severe distress as described in the post above.

 

So, to me, something about this thread is just a bit off. That level of resentment is not right, and I'm hearing echoes of the same view - that the spouse is there to be controlled, isn't behaving themselves, isn't meeting the needs of the partner...(not in all the posts because some are lovely and clearly very loving towards their partner).

 

But it's impossible to know what goes on in other people's head and lives, I think I've now learnt not to go there any more!

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Telecaster68
2 hours ago, Sea horse said:

sex drops off after a few years together, I always hear them joking 'Oh no we don't have sex - we've been married for 10 years!' and it clearly isn't a source of severe distress as described in the post above.

You know they probably mean 'we only have sex a few times a month', not literally 'never', don't you? 

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Guest
On 7/26/2019 at 8:11 AM, Telecaster68 said:

You know they probably mean 'we only have sex a few times a month', not literally 'never', don't you? 

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Telecaster68

No, it's based on Kinsey Institute research. Obviously I can't know specifically for each couple, but as a general trend, chances are they're still having sex a few times a month into their sixties.

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TimeDelay

Just an observation: I think we all have a tendency to 'hear' the comments of strangers as if the words are spoken by someone from our own lives; especially if those words trigger a negative reaction. Many of us are in this forum because we have been hurt in a relationship so being triggered is inevitable if we read enough threads. I'm guilty of knee jerk reactionary posts myself and had to have a word with myself recently when it hit me how annoyed I was feeling toward a total stranger because in my head I'd clearly decided he was 'behaving like my husband'.  I love my husband. I wish I didn't love my husband. Strong responses often come from a place of fear and pain, in real life as well as online. The thing is, all of us have as much right to our feelings as any individual who doesn't think those feelings are 'right' in a specific context.  Deciding what another person should or should not feel at any given moment is surely an attempt at the very controlling behaviour complained about.  It's challenging to leave our own baggage at the door and listen without prejudice. Strangers on the internet shouldn't be conflated with the person who caused us to hurt in real life but it happens all the time.

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Guest
14 minutes ago, Telecaster68 said:

No, it's based on Kinsey Institute research. Obviously I can't know specifically for each couple, but as a general trend, chances are they're still having sex a few times a month into their sixties.

Are we talking about the Kinsey reports, last one produced in the 1950s?  

I've looked through the site briefly and the only relevant finding on there is that sexual dissatisfaction is linked to marriage breakdown. Is there anything else you could point me to?

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Guest
On 7/26/2019 at 10:42 AM, TimeDelay said:

Just an observation: I think we all have a tendency to 'hear' the comments of strangers as if the words are spoken by someone from our own lives; especially if those words trigger a negative reaction. Many of us are in this forum because we have been hurt in a relationship so being triggered is inevitable if we read enough threads. I'm guilty of knee jerk reactionary posts myself and had to have a word with myself recently when it hit me how annoyed I was feeling toward a total stranger because in my head I'd clearly decided he was 'behaving like my husband'.  I love my husband. I wish I didn't love my husband. Strong responses often come from a place of fear and pain, in real life as well as online. The thing is, all of us have as much right to our feelings as any individual who doesn't think those feelings are 'right' in a specific context.  Deciding what another person should or should not feel at any given moment is surely an attempt at the very controlling behaviour complained about.  It's challenging to leave our own baggage at the door and listen without prejudice. Strangers on the internet shouldn't be conflated with the person who caused us to hurt in real life but it happens all the time.

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Serran
31 minutes ago, Sea horse said:

I don't know that, and I'm not sure how you would know? There's an implicit definition of what is 'normal' here, and it seems based on a feeling of unmet need on the part of the writer, rather than any objective definition. 

Studies of sexual couples show that 1-2 times a month is normal for married couples, even in their 60s/70s. If you look up average sex for couples, you can find a few. It has been especially looked into for older couples, as they wanted to help the 50+ crowd end the myth that old people dont have sex (retirement home nurses will tell you how much their patients end up in bed together rather than in their own rooms at night). 

 

When people joke like that, they often mean they have limited intimacy after so long, so arent at it like newlyweds. My coworkers do the same thing - seperate rooms, even, for some. But, they still occasionally have sex and when I mention I dont like PiV at all and thus dont do it, they look at me like I have two heads and go "but married couples do that you know!"

 

"Sexless marriage" is seen as less than 10 times a year, scientifically, not never. And it is considered an issue to be solved, in most cases. 

 

Celibacy is rare among sexuals. And often very difficult. That is why they have support groups and such in churches for people who try to be celibate. 

 

But... as I said in your status, I found the post in this thread a tad gross. It was full of bitter resentment and blame, entitlement to sex from their spouse and if my partner felt that way about sex with me I would pretty much lose all desire for her (despite currently initiating it every other day) and give up having it, cause ew. That sort of attitude honestly would make me more inclined to throw up on a person than sex them up. 

 

But, yeah, lots of sexuals joke about no more sex during marriage. It is an understood joke that generally means "dont do it spontaneously and daily anymore". Or, like my coworker explained it in some detail "when we first got married, we did it in every new room we entered - even on my mom's dining room table. Now, we only share a bed occasionally when he comes to my room from his man room. We are too old and been married too long for that!"

 

Can be confusing for people who genuinely do want sex never. It is part of what confused me so long, to be honest (I didnt find my sexual match til I was 30).  But, they assume everyone is sexual so understands what they are saying. Not many think of ace being a thing.

 

But @Sea horse I am glad you left your ex. Mine was similar, honestly. He wanted me to not work, clean, cook and be available for sex 24/7, even at 3am when he would wake me up by taking my clothes off. I hated it and ended up fantasizing of castrating him while I saved up the money to get away. Not everyone is like that though, even if loss of sex would hurt them. Being hurt about it is valid and quite understandable. Being demanding or forceful about it is never acceptable. 

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TimeDelay

@Sea horse Take a little time to browse through more threads and I'm sure you will find your crowd. I don't expect AVEN to be a safe space for the likes of me but it has been very helpful for understanding my husband better. It is also a relief to know I am not the only one trying to find a way to make a mixed marriage work. That long descriptive list in the op for this thread actually was also helpful because often when I see something put into words from someone else's point of view it helps me clarify what I resonate with and what I really don't. I hope you do find the support network you need; that is so important when going against the 'mainstream' in any way.

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4 minutes ago, TimeDelay said:

@Sea horse Take a little time to browse through more threads and I'm sure you will find your crowd. I don't expect AVEN to be a safe space for the likes of me but it has been very helpful for understanding my husband better. It is also a relief to know I am not the only one trying to find a way to make a mixed marriage work. That long descriptive list in the op for this thread actually was also helpful because often when I see something put into words from someone else's point of view it helps me clarify what I resonate with and what I really don't. I hope you do find the support network you need; that is so important when going against the 'mainstream' in any way.

@TimeDelay thank you...I hope so..

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