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#442486 - 07/29/13 06:42 AM question to survivors about sex drive
HopeDiesLast Offline


Registered: 01/15/13
Posts: 58
My husband disclosed that he never has an ache for sex. Ever. Sex is mechanical at best for him, and he doesn't like it or want it. I knew this in part, of course, seeing how we don't have any. But I'm not sure where to go from here. Does this mean sex is off the board forever? Do I just have to suck it up and forget about this part of life and about children and family? I know that you can't answer this for me, but I'd like to get some more insights. Hence my questions: If you didn't have a sex drive at all because of what happened to you, did that change for you at any time? Was there anything that helped you learn to enjoy physical touch? How did you get a connection with your significant other that held in the physical realm, too, and how did you build on this to actually have sex?

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#442504 - 07/29/13 11:18 AM Re: question to survivors about sex drive [Re: HopeDiesLast]
newground Offline
Chatroom Moderator
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 10/11/11
Posts: 644
Loc: michigan
hi hope
I think it is really hard to answer very well not knowing your situation. if you husband is on meds say for depression especially though there are many others it can have a HUGE impact on the sex drive and the function. also the abuse has its influence on the feelings related to sex and to intimacy and there may be any number of triggers that make the experience unpleasant or just weird and that can pass through being close giving him time to adjust( again I don't know your story)or therapy even couples therapy. short answer is there is hope but the hard part is it will not be easy hope that helps
Jeff
_________________________
Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee. let me then tow to pieces, while still chasing thee, thou damned whale! Thus, I give up the spear!"
Herman Melville

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#442590 - 07/30/13 04:25 AM Re: question to survivors about sex drive [Re: HopeDiesLast]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 1866
Loc: durham, north england
Also, remember that there is a huge difference betwene having a libido and actually enjoying! having alibido.

I have a libido, I often wish I didn't since I am genophobic, (the reason i prefer the term libido to s/x drive). For me however, s/x is something to avoid. It has one, and only one meaning, that off humuliation and disgust, I even dislike my own physical responses.

I have often wondered what actual love making would be like and whether in fact I'd go through with it. I can see three possibilities, either A, it would be an emotional and not physical experience and thus would be something entirely different to my abuse and those experience which trigger fear reactions, this is the best possible course, B, it would be something I'd utterly fail at and find myself reezing just as I did during my abuse, or C, it'd simply be nothing, devocrced from either good or bad emotion and be just like what happens when I mb (which I do to regulate the dreams and bad reactions).

In general I don't know, never having had a significant other, but one thing I would hope is that she would be able to help me make love making more in catagory A, something emotional, rather than either of the other two, and thus help me overcome my own genophobia.

Unfortunately I'm not particularly likely to find out, but maybe this is something to considder.

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#442593 - 07/30/13 06:13 AM Re: question to survivors about sex drive [Re: dark empathy]
HopeDiesLast Offline


Registered: 01/15/13
Posts: 58
Thank you both for your answers!

Originally Posted By: dark empathy
I have a libido, I often wish I didn't since I am genophobic, (the reason i prefer the term libido to s/x drive). For me however, s/x is something to avoid. It has one, and only one meaning, that off humuliation and disgust, I even dislike my own physical responses.

I think this might be close to what my husband feels. It is definitely a feeling that is always there and doesn't have anything much to do with direct triggers (which happen, of course, no matter how we try to avoid them).

For me (I have also been abused, although not as severely as my husband), triggers are something that is a part of my daily emotional landscape, too, so I "get" those (literally and metaphorically). But I haven't had the wish to have no libido at all. Instead, for the longest time I was averse to being touched while at the same time having a burning but purely theoretical desire for it (humans make no sense at all). But with my husband, things are different. I have a desire for him to touch me and for me to touch him. It feels really good and emotionally close to me on a good day and I want it. I actually feel bad about wanting it, though, because I know I stress him out with it. Sigh. It's complicated.

BTW he is not on any meds, though he says things were easier when he was still on them. He didn't have any more desire of course, but I guess he wasn't afraid quite as much.

I guess, I don't know, I'd love for us to find emotional closeness together also when physically touching (Option A), but these days I do not know anymore whether it's possible. And if it's not possible, it is not fair for me to pressure him into trying, knowing that it will only make him feel bad. Of course, if that is the decision, then I have other decisions to make, too. Like, am I ready to give up that part of my life forever without really having found it in the first place. I don't know the answer to this and I don't really want to have to think about it. I love my husband. I want to grow old with him. That's why I asked my questions. I cling to hope, because hope dies last... (yep, chose my user name for that reason).

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#442626 - 07/30/13 01:13 PM Re: question to survivors about sex drive [Re: HopeDiesLast]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 1866
Loc: durham, north england
Originally Posted By: HopeDiesLast
for the longest time I was averse to being touched while at the same time having a burning but purely theoretical desire for it (humans make no sense at all).


This makes infinite amounts of sense to me, and it something I could've written, however remember there is another component.

For me as a teenager, having a e//////n, (rhymes with direction), actually triggered abuse sessions. I learnt that if anyone suspected it I was in for something bad to happen, I therefore tried to repress such things as much as possible, even to mb as much as I could in order to avoid those reactions occurring.

Thus, there is a very distinct link betwene s/x, ---- indeed anything to do! with s/x and threat, humiliation and unpleasantness, this is why i wish to be without a libido.

I do believe if I ever did have anyone who might wish to change this it could be changed, but it'd take essentially relearning all those reactions, and making something has previously been a purely physical form of humiliation, into something emotional and sharing, ---- which is indeed what I have wanted, but have never experienced.

I would therefore suggest beginning with gentle physical activities to do with sharing experience, massage, hand holding, kissing etc (it always bothers me I've never kissed anyone), and working on from there slowly, keeping your husbands emotions involved.

As I said, this is entirely a theoretical sugestion of what I believe might! help me in a similar situation, rather than anything based on practical experience, still I hope it helps.

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#442744 - 07/31/13 10:13 AM Re: question to survivors about sex drive [Re: HopeDiesLast]
HopeDiesLast Offline


Registered: 01/15/13
Posts: 58
Thank you, dark empathy. Theoretical or not, your insights are really helpful. And I think you're right. We have already accomplished a lot of small steps. We hold hands, we cuddle, we kiss. Concentrating on what we have accomplished and building on it step by step seems a good way forward.

I hope this is not out of line, but I hope for you that you find someone to experience kissing with at some point (only if you want that, of course). It really is very nice with the right person.

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#442775 - 07/31/13 03:08 PM Re: question to survivors about sex drive [Re: HopeDiesLast]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 1866
Loc: durham, north england
Thanks, i appreciate the thought, but experience has shown that this is something which I just have to live without, or risk far too much pain and disappointment.

I very much hope you can work things out with your husband and help him, and yourself experience what I haven't.

Luke.

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#443912 - 08/10/13 02:53 AM Re: question to survivors about sex drive [Re: HopeDiesLast]
HopeDiesLast Offline


Registered: 01/15/13
Posts: 58
I work in nature sciences, so I use this approach every day. I try to predict from patterns in the past what's going to happen in the future. And it's a very reasonable approach. It works quite often. But not always. Sometimes an event happens and it doesn't fit past patterns and you have no way of predicting or modelling it. Those are the most excruciating and most interesting moments in science.

So, what I want to say with this, and I guess in a way I'm answering my OP with this, too, is that, yeah, I get you. There's no other way to perceive the present than to build on past experience. But it's not necessarily a good predictor for the entire future.

Whether that gives hope or is kinda scary, I'm not all that sure myself.

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#443970 - 08/10/13 05:54 PM Re: question to survivors about sex drive [Re: HopeDiesLast]
lucylives Offline


Registered: 04/07/11
Posts: 357
Hope, Have you read Sexual Anorexia by Patrick Carnes. An amazing, eye opening book. It may really help you understand a bit better even though it is your husband who should read to try to understand.

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#443984 - 08/11/13 12:25 AM Re: question to survivors about sex drive [Re: HopeDiesLast]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 1866
Loc: durham, north england
@Lucy, from what I've read there is some difference between S/xual Anorexia and genophobia.

since the one is fear of emotional entanglement through s/x, the other is simply a fear of s/x itself, and indeed it's quite possible to be very much in love and still! be genophobic.

I'm not sure which applies to hope's husband, but I can say from personal experience that at least the online articals and stuff I've read on s/xual Anorexia do not apply to genophobia, indeed I couldn't find much on genophobia at all when I looked (or at least not online, not sure if there is stuff in print). In some ways at least genophobia is almost the opposite, since there a person can still desire emotional intimacy but want to avoid any! kind of s/x at all, even in books, films etc.

Of course it is entirely possible that I'm assuming Hope's husband is more similar to myself than is actually the case, and I could well be wrong.

@Hope, I appreciate the thought, however I've had people tell me "give it time" for years and while I don't doubt that's kindly meant there is only so often you can be told that. my thirty first birthday is next week, and I've been "giving it time" since I was eighteen, often with considderable pain, uncertainty and expectation (good grief I hate being male and having to make the first move), indeed it was attempting to show a girl how I felt and the utter failure of that to go anywhere that made me realize I needed to start recovery in the first place.

The only scientific principle that I've been able to make to my situation is that of biological fitness, ie, a species is fit for an environment when it is in the best position to survive there in, and if we take my usual environment the answer is a very large negative.

As I said, I appreciate the thought and thank yu for the good wishes.

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