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#139155 - 01/26/07 08:39 PM Why doesn't he want a family
weepywife Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 57
Hello its me again. So I have tired to be patient and less controling with my husband. He disclosed about 1 1/2 years ago and we have a perfect life except no intimacy and I worry about him all the time. He refuses to go to therapy because he doesnt believe it will help. He looks fine on the outside. We get along great and I love him. I just worry about him because he won't talk about it and won't tell me how he's feeling. The few times he has talked about it he looked so distressed and upset...he said some things that made me wonder if he is living a tortured life inside.
I can't help but wonder if we weren't together he would be happier. I know what hurts him the most is when I get upset and sad. I also know that he gets anxiety arround me because I am the only one who knows his secret.
So I have tried to back off and just trying to live a normal life and let him relax and not worry about me bringing up the subject. I haven't said a word about it in 2 months. Tonight we were watching a show about women in there 30s having a hard time conceiving. I told him that I wanted a family some day. We had always kind of talked about our life in the future with kids. I asked him if he wanted a family. He said I don't know. I told him even if we couldn't have biological children we could always adopt and he said he didn't know and didn't want to talk about it.
I don't know what to do. I don't feel like I am living my "best life". I feel like I am going through the motions and living a pretend life. I don't want to talk to anyone because anyone I trust to talk to also knows my husband and I don't want to break his confidence. Why can't he talk about it a little? Why doesn he not want a family?
I love my husband. But what is the difference between him and a best friend?
I feel like I am losing my dreams. I dream of going on romantic vacations with him and I know the thought of that stresses him out because he is scared of intimacy. I dream of a family with him and he doesn't know if he wants it. I dream of weekends cuddling with him on the couch and I know he hates that. I dream of conecting with my husband on a physical level again. Should I let go of my dreams? Its not like my dreams could have substitute of another man? I am scared that this will never get better. I am scared we won't make it. I am frustrated that its not getting better.
Weepywife


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#139189 - 01/27/07 07:32 AM Re: Why doesn't he want a family [Re: weepywife]
compassion Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/07/06
Posts: 33
Loc: Illinois, US
I don't believe anyone really wants to have an intimacy-free life by choice...it is how we connect, but that is why we are all here....to heal. I would do a check in on your needs. Are you seeing it as your job to drag all this stuff out of him? If you re-read your post it is there...you acknowledge pretty clearly your needs...YOUR needs: I don't feel like I am living my "best life". Hmmmmm......why not? It is pretty typical for people who have been abused to want to isolate and feel "unworthy" of good things...like kids...my partner used to talk often about being alone, but that was for lack of knowing what else to do. Let me lovingly offer that this fork in the road is one we have all stood at, probably. Nobody can forecast where your relationship will go. I was in a bit of a fog until I understood what was happening to my partner, but now I have a pretty clear boundaries about my own life. I stay with my partner because he embraces a journey of health....hasn't arrived, but is dedicated to himself. If he were not, I would not dedicate my life to his betterment...1) I only have this life for myself or I would give him mine and 2) you can't fix someone else. The best way to love him is to love you and provide a soft place for him to land. I am just hearing a lot of language about your dreams for your own life and suggesting that loving and supporting your husband doesn't have to exclude love and support for your own dreams. You don't need to throw yourself on the sword!! It is a horrible thing that has happened to your husband and for that I feel sad for you both. For me, there is no difference between my best friend and my husband-to-be...he is both. No crystal ball on whether any of us make it or not...plenty who haven't; plenty who have, but you could make different choices as early as today for your own happiness....yeah? I have much hope for you both...

_________________________
The ocean that flows in you; flows in me...all colors of humanity.

My "avatar" is a lotus...a beautiful flower that thrives in muddy water.

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#139193 - 01/27/07 09:13 AM Re: Why doesn't he want a family [Re: compassion]
Trish4850 Offline
BoD Liaison Emeritus
MaleSurvivor<

Registered: 10/15/05
Posts: 3280
Loc: New Jersey
Weepy Wife,

It sounds to me like itís time to really take stock of your life and decide what you want out of it. Itís so easy to see from this and other posts from you that you truly love your husband. Thatís a beautiful thing, unless that love is hurting you to the point where there can be nothing but regrets in the future and not having children because your partner didnít want them, yet you did, is one of the biggest regrets I can think of.

I donít know how old you and your husband are, but for argumentís sake, letís say youíre 25, youíve got time, but in 5 or 10 years, maybe you donít; the older you are, the harder is it to get pregnant and have a healthy child. A good friend of mine is only 31, yet she and her husband could not get pregnant so they went the in-vitro route. My sister tried it as well. For my sister, it didnít work; she was 40; for my friend, who is 31, it did. She actually just found out 3 days ago that she is pregnant, after the 2nd attempt. If this pregnancy doesnít hold, theyíll do it again Making that effort is so draining and requires so much physical and emotional work itís beyond belief, but they both wanted it so badly.

Iím not talking about ďjustĒ the lack of intimacy between you and your husband; thatís hard enough, but about core differences in what you both want out of life and your future together. Lack of intimacy is something that many have dealt with and theyíve come out the other side OK with each other. Iím afraid I may be just entering such a period in my own relationship. Iíll deal for a host of reasons, but having children is not something I need to worry about. If it were, then Iíd have some serious re-evaluating to do.

You love your husband - do you really want to look at him in 10 years and be angry at him because he wouldnít or couldnít fulfill something in you so monumental as being a mother? I personally believe that that is the kind of regret that canít be overcome and would spell destruction to an otherwise good relationship.

You canít make him healthy and happy, he has to do that, with you by his side, as his wife, would be preferable, but itís not always possible.

This is not a post that says get divorced and have children with someone else. But I am saying, with different words, what Compassion said. Look at you and what you need and want in your life and donít sacrifice those needs for the sake of someone else, even one you love. Regrets are horrible things and when they exist on such a monumental scale they can rarely be overcome.

ROCK ON.........Trish

_________________________
If you fall down 10 times, Stand up 11.

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#139273 - 01/27/07 05:47 PM Re: Why doesn't he want a family [Re: Trish4850]
weepywife Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 57
Trish and compassion,
Thank you both for your posts. After I posted last night I went back in the living room and my husband and I started talking. He initiated it (all though he hates talking about the situation it upsets him for days) He said the reason he doesn't know if he wants a family is because he gets nervous when he is arround children. It makes him very uncomfortable because all the steriotypes of abused becoming abusers. He also said that he feels like he can't handle himself right now, none the less try to take care of someone else.

He admited that he did not see how we were coexisting together right now could work long term. I told him that I loved him and that there was no one else that I wanted to be with. I told him I was willing to fight for this relationship. He said he felt he was in a no win situation. He says he thinks this situation hurts me more than him. He feels like he is letting me down and he gets anxiety/feels dread when ever I look at him lustingly. I can tell he doesn't even like to be alone with me....even when I talk about going on a vacation together...he wants to bring out friend along just so we don't have to be alone. I know my last post sounded like all my wants...it was. But honestly I have been trying to be supportive like I said I didn't bring up the subject for 2 months.

I guess I feel so helpless. Its been 1 1/2 years he won't talk about it, won't go to therapy etc. etc. I asked him if I made him happy. I don't think he really answered that question. Because when he sees me he thinks about the abuse. No one else knows so he is happier forgeting his problems with his friend. I told him I saw 2 options...one or both of us could get counseling or we could try to spend more time apart.

Not necessarily a seperation but just try not to be arround each other a lot. So he could figure out if he wants to be with me. I don't question his love. I know he loves me more than himself. But if he's not happy arround me what's the point? I mean what we have right now is more of a best friend than a marriage. If he's not willing to try to get better. We could just be roommates. I know that sound cruel.

I think I am also scared to be alone I am an only child and don't have a lot of friends. So if we broke up what would I have?
Anyways, sorry for this long post. But when we woke up this am he said he e-mailed a therapist and he didn't want to talk about it. I was so happy. I am trying not to get too excited because I am not sure he will go. But part of my frustration was that he was not trying anything....he had no hope of getting better...he said so himself. I can sit arround and wait for someone to get better. But I can't sit arround and wait for someone who won't try ANYTHING to get better.
Thanks for reading.
WW




Edited by weepywife (01/27/07 05:49 PM)

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#139274 - 01/27/07 05:56 PM Re: Why doesn't he want a family [Re: weepywife]
weepywife Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 57
Trish,
Also I am 29 still time but not a spring chicken.


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#139278 - 01/27/07 06:25 PM Re: Why doesn't he want a family [Re: weepywife]
Trish4850 Offline
BoD Liaison Emeritus
MaleSurvivor<

Registered: 10/15/05
Posts: 3280
Loc: New Jersey
WW,

I'm going to take a big deep breath for you and wish on every star I see tonight that your husband follows through with the therapist. That's a huge, huge step for him and it will be hard.

I can only imagine that right now, you're wondering WTF?! since he told you he contacted someone, but then basically told you to butt out. It sucks. Whenever my b/f drops a bomb shell but then says he doesn't want to talk about it, I just squeaze his hand and give him a hug to let him know it's OK. Then I try to process what I can in my alone time and then I come here and ask questions or vent or whatever. It's all we can do.

I'll be thinking of you both and wishing the best.

ROCK ON..........Trish

_________________________
If you fall down 10 times, Stand up 11.

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#139368 - 01/28/07 10:53 PM Re: Why doesn't he want a family [Re: weepywife]
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Originally Posted By: weepywife
I feel like I am losing my dreams.


ww, my heart goes out to you - for so many reasons and so many things you say in your post.

there's nothing more difficult than looking at the reality of a relationship and realizing it's not what you expected, imagined, believed.

what i have learned most of all is in a relationship with a survivor, dreams do change regarding the relationship itself. your dreams for yourself don't have to change necessarily, but in life dreams change all the time as we make adjustments to what is and is not possible.

i do know as the relationship grew between my bf and myself, little steps that people take in a relationship, what seemed so normal and almost insignificant on one hand but still important on the other, seemed so incredibly difficult for him. of course this is before i knew about his csa and was totally perplexed as to what the problem was. for example, the first year we knew each other we lived some distance apart and only met every few weeks in a third city where we had both traveled to. only later after i moved closer to his location did doing something like having dinner at my place become a viable option. so when i asked him about coming over, i was met w/all kinds of resistance and excuses until we had a bit of a row about it over the telephone. i gave up, feeling exasperated, and much to my surprise, he called a little while later and said he was coming that very afternoon! we had a great time, he was ok, tho both of us visibly nervous that first time he was actually in my home.

this became a predictable routine where, whenever i wanted us to become a little closer in some aspect of our relationship. because i knew he'd never been married and to my knowledge, never even lived with someone (turns out he did for a very short time); i felt it was up to me to guide/direct him on how a relationship should proceed, just basic stuff. i thought it was extremely odd, but accepted it because i love him. i knew eventually i'd understand why he was the way he is.

yes, well, now i do understand and yes, my dreams have changed a great deal towards our relationship. however, something that hasn't changed is how i feel about him. i still have my own dreams and my own life's goals to work on, and i do that in a separate sphere than our relationship, although i share with him and he shares with me what we are both doing. sometimes we are close and our spheres crossover, sharing the same space. sometimes they do not, i am in my world and he is in his.

it seems significant to point out that you were not having a heart-to-heart conversation with him when you brought this up about having a family - you seemed both of you were talking off the top of your head, so to speak. a lot of times the mood you are in that day can effect virtually everything you think or feel so maybe, in his world which is no doubt frequently full of turmoil and stress, he saw no future as a family man. for you, on the other hand, with his words saw your dreams disappearing.

having a family is certainly important to some people, more than others, and since he's your husband, well, didn't you discuss this before marriage? is it possible to sit down and again go over this discussion? remind him gently about what you might have discussed back when?

planning a family in any context should be done with thought and consideration. to do so in your situation, where the survivor has disclosed but the relationship is strained because of communication difficulties, lack of therapy, whatever, certainly is putting a huge burden on the success or failure of any future family which may be created. please hear my words - parenthood is not easy, not at all. every child deserves to be brought into a family wanted by both parents, not just one.

talk to your husband, really sit down and talk with him. explain to him how you feel, what you said here about your dreams. let him know, or remind him, how important this is. then start taking steps to realize your dreams, which is, well, that's how dreams come true. find out what you can do. if it's go to a T, then do so. if your discussion leads that direction, then maybe he needs to go (no doubt he does) but maybe you need to insist.

your life, your dreams, they are under your control. the dreams you share together, well, they need to be expressed first, before anything else, then work it out from there. if he's reluctant to express any dreams (my bf says frankly "i have no ambition") then you mustn't under any circumstances let that deter you from yours. you must also realize, he is answering for what is true for that point in time. as his life changes, as he grows older, so may this change also.

most of all, you must believe in your dreams, they can come true, i know, because some (not by any means all) of mine have.

all the best,
indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

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#139622 - 01/30/07 07:23 PM Re: Why doesn't he want a family [Re: indygal]
Grunty1967b Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/28/05
Posts: 826
Loc: Australia
WeepyWife,

I thought Iíd be hubbyís voice (in proxy) as I think I understand in part what heís feeling and going through. As a fellow survivor itís tough trying to face all this stuff let alone talk about it to somebody else, even if that is your wife whom you know loves you and cares about you.

I just want to pick out a few points you mentioned and give my perspective if I may:

ďHe refuses to go to therapy because he doesnít believe it will helpĒ
For me to take that step I had to get over the huge fear, and it DID feel like nothing would help. I did feel helpless. I was feeling like the little boy who was being abused. Imagine that for a moment Ė how would a little boy being abused feel? Totally helpless. Surely nothing will ever make it stop and nothing will ever help. When youíre in the midst of all this stuff itís the boysí emotions and feelings that are going on not your adult husbandsí emotions that are going on. Heís feeling like the little boy.

ďhe won't talk about it and won't tell me how he's feelingĒ
What are feelings? If heís a good survivor like many of us, heís spent most of his life burying his emotions and feelings. He had to to survive. To now have to try and express what heís feeling means he has to feel what heís feeling. Thatís going to be mission impossible for a while. Then it will take some time after that until heís comfortable talking about what he is feeling. Recovery takes time.

ďhe said some things that made me wonder if he is living a tortured life insideĒ
In the times that he is feeling anything Ė he probably is. Thatís why he has been suppressing the feelings. See above.

ďHe said the reason he doesn't know if he wants a family is because he gets nervous when he is around children. It makes him very uncomfortable because all the stereotypes of abused becoming abusersĒ
Regarding abused people becoming abusers themselves heís got that part a bit mixed up. The stats are that of those people that do abuse they themselves were most probably abused. The stats donít say that people who have been abused become abusers. However, I still understand the other bit about him being uncomfortable around children. Iím uncomfortable around children too but not for abusing fears. Itís major trigger territory. Being around kids can trigger you and remind you about your own abuse until you have dealt with it adequately.

WeepyWife, with all of these points Iíve touched on I just wanted to validate and give the perspective from your husband. Itís not about saying you should be accepting of your marriage the way it is as is forever and nor am I saying this is the way things will be for him forever.

Iíd like to think Iíve been able to relate [relatively clearly] to these points because of my own recovery. I can see how I have reacted like your husband, and still do - but to a lesser extent on the same issues but I am getting better each day. I did eventually make it to a therapist (in time) and it helped tremendously. Iím still going. Reading books on male CSA has also been great for me. Itís a non-threatening way to ease into recovery more gently.

Hope that helps somewhat.


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#139736 - 01/31/07 06:11 PM Re: Why doesn't he want a family [Re: Grunty1967b]
Hauser Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 2962
Loc: United States
I'm no relationship expert but I wanted to point out that his anxiety about being around kids may not be as real as he says it is. WW? Have you or your husband ever babysat for any people? Have you ever been around kids at ALL? Maybe if he actually witnessed the spontaneity and happiness that kids can project and start to feel an attachment for someone else's kids, he'll maybe reconsider what he said.

I've been hanging around my ONE friend that I've made since moving to the city and I've become attached to his kids, and they love it when I come over. I've told him outright that his kids made me wish (for the first time ever) that I had my own.

Perhaps you could share this perspective with him, that of a 37yo man that waited too long, and now he wishes that he at least tried to start a family.


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#139918 - 02/01/07 06:30 PM Re: Why doesn't he want a family [Re: Hauser]
weepywife Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 57
UPDATE

Thank you all for your input and kind words.

My husband went and saw a therapist!!! He made an appointment and went already. I was suprised and very proud of him. He told me he went and how much money it cost. \:o He went and saw someone who specializes in post traumatic stress disorder. He told me that he thought he was going to vomit on his way home from his therapy. I have really been trying to give him space. The only question I asked him was was he nice and he said yes. I could tell that he didn't want to talk about it so I dropped it.

I don't know if he made another appointment or what the guy said. I'm trying not to be pushy. My husband has been even more distant since going to therapy. I can tell he is even more uncomfortable arround me. What should I expect? This is going to be a very hard process for him...right? I wish I knew if he was going to go again. ARe things going to get worse before there is a chance of them getting better?



Edited by weepywife (02/01/07 06:32 PM)

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