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#64544 - 09/04/06 05:15 PM ruined labor day
weepywife Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 57
So, it's been about a year since my husband has disclossed. Not too much has changed. Things may be a little better but it's hard to tell. We still have no intimacy, but other than our relationship is great. We love each other, respect each other and my husband is smart, kind, a leader, and a great human being.
Today, I decided to talk to my husband about how things haven't changed it a year. It did not go well. Both of us feel there is no hope that things will get better. He states that when ever he thinks about being intimate with me he feels like he is having a heart attack. He states 90% of the time he is completely fine. It is only when he is reminded by me hinting about needing intimacy when he feels horrible.
He states if therapy or reading a book were the cure he would do it. But he doesn't feel like that would cure him. The only problem he states he has is being arround me (because I want intimacy and I know his secret)
I wish I would have never brought this up today. I was hoping he would tell me that he sees progress after a year. Instead, I have made him feel like he is dissapointing me. I have made him feel inadequate. He thinks that he is ruining my life. I try to encourage him and tell him things will be better but he states he doesn't need any Pep talks. He feels like he is failing me. I tried to tell him I just need to see some progress....have some hope for the future. I need to know things won't always be like this. He can't tell me that.
I feel like I am being selfish. I really have everything....except intimacy. Maybe I should just learn to live my life like this. Is the fact that I keep bringing this up...keep saying I want more....hurting him even more? Should I just learn to live in a marriage like this? Or should I keep making my husband feel inadequate by bringing this up? Boy, this makes me wish I never take any days off of work.


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#64545 - 09/04/06 08:05 PM Re: ruined labor day
Brokenhearted Offline
Member

Registered: 08/07/06
Posts: 644
Loc: TX
WW,

How I feel for you. Did your husband ever seek therapy, even in the very beginning? I can't imagine anyone dealing w/ such a big issue w/ out it.

Is he affectionate at all? Will he hug you or kiss you or hold your hand?

Mine is still at the very beginning and a hug is sometimes impossible and uncomfortable for him. I don't know what to tell you, except that after reading on this site for a while now, it sounds like some people are having to go w/ out intimacy for many, many yrs, some a decade or more.

It is a very long-term thing. It is so sad. Maybe since he is all right most of the time, that is such a good thing. It has only (I know it feels like an eternity) been a yr. If he's come this far w/out therapy I think it is amazing. If it is only the intimacy missing, even though it is sad, I think you are lucky if that is all that is missing. If he knows he loves you, and you love him, that is good. Perhaps therapy will be what he needs to have movement in the intimacy area.

I wish I had as much going right as you, though my situation is younger, I guess you could say. I hope that a yr from now mine will at least decide he still loves me after more than a decade of marriage. To me that's the main thing I'm having a hard time w/ right now. The intimacy is sadly missed though. Will yours cuddle? I mean, if he isn't totally untouchable, that's a great thing, I think.

Thinking of you ~

_________________________
Brokenhearted

It were better for him that a millstone were hanged around his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.
Luke 17:2

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#64546 - 09/05/06 04:55 PM Re: ruined labor day
Dewey Offline
Member

Registered: 11/13/02
Posts: 137
Loc: the sunshine state
Hi gals, as a survivor, and not a therapist, might I offer a suggestion and maybe some hope? I remember feeling smothered by my wife when we would kiss. I'd get all panicky and need to push her away. I sure wish I'd have pushed someone else away 30 years ago! What you have together is GOOD. Sex and intimacy is all twisted up for these guys and generally seen as bad although it feels great. If possible for you, and with your willing husband, might you redeem what was stolen? You are taking a risk of being rejected but the sex drive is strong and I'll bet with time you'll see progress. What I'm suggesting is this- have a no holds barred talk about sex and the abuse, without fear condemnation or accusation. If your hurt feelings of rejection will get in the way then wait untill you can be objective. I'm betting these guys want to talk. What better place than in the confines of marriage? My wife called it"going back and undoing the lies" or something like that.It was powerful for us. As I just reread both your posts, I was reminded of the feeling of taking care of or being responsible for someone elses happiness. {wifes=perpetrators} Again I say that sex is a strong motivator and with a healthy relationship, things should progress toward wholeness and healing. Yeah, we guys can be grunts and need guidance sometimes in the area of romance, but that's not where you are right now so I'd say use the weapon that you have to take back what was ripped off from all four of you. Brokenhearted, I love that Luke 17:2 quote. It's what enabled me to forgive. Hope this helps Dan

_________________________
I refuse to use my past as an excuse to not have a future.
My hero Dad; Trigger warning- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oi3Hyxuf5AE

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#64547 - 09/05/06 10:02 PM Re: ruined labor day
Brokenhearted Offline
Member

Registered: 08/07/06
Posts: 644
Loc: TX
Dan, I'd love to give it a try, but right now it seems I'm taking a big chance every time I bring up the abuse issue even in general terms, because it makes my husband uncomfortable and I am trying to give him some space he has asked for, not bring it up too often or he may never come home again, and plus I haven't the slightest idea how I would even phrase it w/ out him becoming hypersensitive/defensive. I run the risk of him shutting me out forever, I feel, if I don't leave it alone for a while.

What would you say -- "Sweetie, I think we need to give our sex drives something we deserve even though I know something else has made you feel yucky about it right now"??????

_________________________
Brokenhearted

It were better for him that a millstone were hanged around his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.
Luke 17:2

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#64548 - 09/06/06 04:32 AM Re: ruined labor day
Dewey Offline
Member

Registered: 11/13/02
Posts: 137
Loc: the sunshine state
You could say something like, I care about you and what you've been through and I'd really like to know what happened. I want you to know that there's nothing you can tell me that will make me love you less.Including the thoughts and fears that are now accompanying the trauma you endured. I'd like to try to help us [you] get past this. I know it takes time to trust people again. I am here, and I love you. And would you puleeze pick up your darn socks, you lazy slob? Ha! Actually that's where the problem can come in. Shifting from caring helper to needing our own desires met. Not that his socks misplaced are your needs but I think you get my drift. Dan

_________________________
I refuse to use my past as an excuse to not have a future.
My hero Dad; Trigger warning- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oi3Hyxuf5AE

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#64549 - 09/09/06 09:33 PM Re: ruined labor day
nursemanda25 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/19/06
Posts: 18
Loc: KS
I want to make it clear to you that YOU haven't made him feel disappointed or inadequate. You have needs that MUST be met.
I asked here not so long ago: I'm only 25, how can I be expect to go through the rest of life without having my needs met???
No one had to tell me... I already knew: I cannot be expect to; and I will not. I have told my husband that as long as he is working on the healing process, I can be here, be involved, and be supportive - but if he stops trying to heal, I can't stay married to him because I will set on a path of self destruction and I cannot go through the emotional abuse again.
This is something you have to figure out for yourself: what are you willing to give up; what are you willing to try; what will you stay for; and what do you want out of life?
You NEVER make anyone feel a certain way - if your husband has a problem with the fact that you have needs and he then feels upset or inadequate, that is in no way your fault and you should NEVER blame yourself. How he reacts and what he does and doesn't do are his own problems to solve.
I would highly recommend that you both see counselors: him to deal with his sa, and you to reestablish your identity, find your assertiveness, and how you want to deal with your marriage.
I would guess that most of the guys here would tell you that they can't be cured - so no, a therapist wouldn't "cure" your husband, but they can help him heal, cope better, and in time to begin to reconnect with you on an intimate level.

I can say that it would be a shame for neither of you to try to work through this and just give up. And it would be a shame for you to stay in a marriage that doesn't meet your needs. One of the things that really helps me is kind of stepping back from the situation in my mind and really evaluating: Am *I* doing everything in my power to make our marriage better?
The gut reaction is yes; but this is something that needs critically evaluated and I'm sure you'll find the answer is no. If your husband won't go to a counselor, then you should go and do your best to be the best YOU possible and if your marriage just won't work, then only you can decide what you will do with it.


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#64550 - 09/18/06 02:59 PM Re: ruined labor day
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
Hi there weepywife,

I really relate to what you're saying here, although it would seem that ever since I've been telling my bf I think we should take a break from sex, he seems to want it more.....whereas, before, when I seemed to be wanting any kind of intimacy, he said it made him feel inadequate. Having said that, when my bf approaches me in a sexual way, I'm realising it's not really about an 'interraction' at all, not so much intimate, as just something physical he wants. The minute i respond in any way sexually, he is triggered. (I've written a post on this.)

You may say I'm lucky he seems to want anything sexually, but I don't feel reassured, I just feel objectified and de-personalised by all his advances and also the way he deals/doesn't deal with triggers. I've well and truly reached the point where i feel too messed up and confused myslef to be able to trust him enough to be sexual in any way.

There's no easy answer to all this, is there?
I wish I could offer you some good advice, but all I have going round and round in my head, is how my bf said to me, he can't imagine not being triggered with me. No positive feelings about the future of our sex life. At the time, I reassured him, but now, that's all I've got in my head.

Maybe there's just too much between us to reach a point where there could ever be any fun between us again(not that there ever really was anyway).

I'm 31 and wondering if me and bf will ever truly be happy together..

hope things improve for you....really hope it for all of us...


peace,
Beccy


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#64551 - 09/18/06 06:09 PM Re: ruined labor day
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Weepy,

Sorry I missed this one when you first started it. I was bouncing around between Germany and other parts of the Known Universe and just lost track of things here for awhile.

I can so identify with this one. I have been sexually non-functional since I first began to deal with my abuse issues six years ago. I can see improvements since then, in that at least I can now see this won't last forever. But still, even now intimacy is a threat to me. If I see it looming on the horizon I become uncomfortable and images of what was done to me as a child come crowding into my head.

One thing I had to learn in this area is that guys are so full of shit where sex is concerned. We are taught by peers and society that we have to be rutting maniacs all the time, and that if our sexual desire is compromised in any way that calls our manhood (whatever that is) into question. We are urged to see sex as an act of conquest and achievement, rather than something shared as an act of love.

Once I got in touch with this distinction I was able to approach my problem in a far healthier way. I realized two things in particular.

One was that I needed to keep talking about this with my wonderful wife. She was fearful that there was "another woman" at first, and fair enough. We had to deal with that one, and then I found that it helped me a lot to just lay it on the line about my inability to be intimate. I told her everything and now I never hold back how I feel. It's so much better now. I feel so empowered - like I have been set free from some terrible load of chains.

The second thing I discovered was that if I cannot perform sexually for the time being I can still be a worthy and loving partner. It's just that we both have to understand what's going on and why I feel the way I do.

Once I got these two points sorted out I discovered that intimacy wasn't the only issue in my recovery. In the past, I had been so worried about my "performance issues" that they overruled the progress I was making in other areas. I refused to acknowledge that progress. Now, however, I can see that I really am making progress, and great progress. That gives me hope and confidence for my other problems.

So where is this going? I would suggest that you and your husband try to establish an absolutely honest and open communication about this intimacy issue. Once you are able to talk about it, no matter how difficult it seems, it will lose its power to threaten and harm the both of you. Your husband will be able to acknowledge the real progress he is making in other areas. He won't feel so overwhelmingly inadequate and "unmanly". And once a sense of equilibrium is re-established, I think that will help him with the intimacy issues.

Confidence and trust are great allies of intimacy, just as fear and despair are its fatal enemies.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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