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Hurt and confused and need someone to talk to

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  • Hurt and confused and need someone to talk to

    I'm new here, but really hoping for some insightful opinions or advice, as I don't have anyone I can talk to.

    My husband and I have been together for 11 years. We have a 7 year old together. We met when we were both in our early 20s and for the first 3 years had that kind of relationship that made people believe in soulmates. He made me feel special, and honestly was the first person ever to do so.

    Somewhere between year 3 and 4, he did a drastic turn around. It's a long story but the gist is, unknown to me, he had become addicted to pain meds. We ended up with all of the typical problems that you can expect when one person is an addict. The relationship limped along for a couple more years until I finally had enough. I packed his bags and told him I would drive him to rehab, or he could get out. I had our daughter to think about and she gave me the strength to finally speak up. We had the first candid conversation that we'd had in years and to my relief he didn't hesitate to choose rehab.

    It hasn't been an easy road, he's struggled with relapse, but I can finally say with confidence that he has truly been clean for over a year now. The problem is, he has changed so drastically from the person he was. We don't talk to each other. We never touch, even casually. If I try to initiate any interaction it doesn't work. As an example, twice tonight I said something to him that warranted a reply. I got zero response. It's like he genuinely didn't hear me, not like he was ignoring me purposefully. But I was sitting less than two feet away from him. And this happens all of the time.

    He is an amazing father and a good person. The core values that drew me to him in the first place are mostly still intact. With the exception of one, but for me it's a huge deal. About a week ago, one of our now very rare conversations took a surprising turn. He revealed to me that after 11 years of a completely monogamous relationship, he is interested in sleeping with other people. He was very candid and told me that he regrets not sleeping around at a young age. (We were both virgins when we met) He revealed that he is really bothered by the idea that he will go through life only having slept with one person. He even suggested a threesome where I would pick the third as a compromise, so I could be present.

    I'm obviously glad that he chose to talk to me instead of sneaking around behind my back, but this ripped my heart out. This person has been my whole world and I'd never even consider being with anyone else. The details aren't important, but my earlier years have left me emotionally scarred, and I realise that I have plenty of my own issues. I know that a stronger person would probably deal with this better than I am.

    I know he still cares for me in his own way. But I'm not so sure that he still loves me. The way things have been for years now, has pushed my own feelings of insecurity to the max. I am so confused. We have had a sexless marriage for years, and now I find out that he is interested in sex, just not necessarily with me.

    I need to feel at least a little important in his life (again, I know this is my i ssue) and I don't seem to be at all. With communication mostly not an option, I don't know what to do. If I tell straight up him how hurt I am, he wont ever try having an honest conversation that will be uncomfortable for me again. I don't want that, I want for us to be able to talk to each other.

    The past few days have been torture. But he hasn't noticed that I'm a wreck. It's like I'm not even here.

    I don't know exactly what I'm hoping for in posting this here, but if anyone has any advice, I'll gladly hear it.

  • #2
    How did the sexless part of your marriage start? Was it related to his addiction? The hormones released during sex can also be addictive. Is he possibly wanting to chase the dragon through sex?
    I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience.
    ...
    Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance by lying supinely on our backs and hugging the delusive phantom of hope, until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot?

    From a speech by Patrick Henry on March 23, 1775 at St. John's Church, Richmond, Virginia

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    • #3
      I do think that our problems in the bedroom started out related to his addiction. We had a very healthy sex life for years, both of us have a high sex drive. The problems started at about the same time that his addiction really got out of hand.

      He does have a highly addictive personality. Years of struggling to get himself under control has proven that over and over. And it's not just to drugs. He does nothing halfway.

      I was just so blindsided by that conversation. I had no idea he felt like he does.

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      • #4
        after reading other posts, realized a regular therapist would be better
        there must be a lot of hurtful feelings in your relationship that need ironed out
        since both of you do not want to leave the marriage, the only option is to get help
        on your own, things will not suddenly resolve themselves

        however, you've already weathered a big storm and with work you two could get through this also
        think it is also good he opened up to you, as it's often difficult for men to open up
        Last edited by amy40; 01-06-2017, 04:52 PM. Reason: adjusted post

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        • #5
          I don't doubt that he would go to a sex therapist of I were to ask. But we can't afford anything like that right now. We are still deeply in debt from those bad years and barely managing not to lose our house.

          I have tried to spice things up between us with little results. I'm no prude and always happy to indulge new things he'd like to try. Except including other people. That's been a no go for me from the beginning.

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          • #6
            well you two are under a lot of stress then
            and he is seeking a way to release some of that stress
            can you ask a family member to loan/give you some money to see a therapist even for a few sessions
            it seems your marriage is at a critical junction

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            • #7
              I do agree, I'm sure we can work this out. He was very clear that he's not looking to leave. And I know I'm not interested in leaving either. He knows cheating is one of the few absolute deal breakers for me and chose to talk to me instead of acting in a way that he knows I won't tolerate.

              He is my best friend and I want to always be there for him. But the thought of another person touching either one of us makes my physically sick.

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              • #8
                We don't really have anyone. It's a long story, but it's just us.

                Yes, the financial stress takes a toll.

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                • #9
                  sorry to hear that
                  often you can see someone at a church for a low cost or sliding scale

                  Last edited by amy40; 01-24-2017, 02:33 AM.

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                  • #10
                    I also think Counseling is the best next step here, and not just sex therapy.

                    Have you checked into resources in your community for low cost counseling? Most have some availability. When I was in college I saw a women's center counseling service and it was a pay as able arrangement. I paid $5 per session or nothing if I couldn't. It was arranged through a local university.

                    Pastors or churches often offer help to members.

                    Look into it. I think the sexual disfunction is not the core problem here, and solving the deeper issue with communication and intimacy are priorities.

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                    • #11
                      A few observations and questions.....

                      -11 year marriage - 3-4 of that were good. The rest of those 7-8 years have been spent dealing with his addiction, recovery, relapse, recovery, lack of interest in you, lack of communication. Don't get me wrong, I know that there have been good times in your marriage (I know it's not possible to list out EVERYTHING here)over the past 7-8 years....but ask yourself how they compare to the bad? How long has it been since you felt loved, appreciated, respected, desired, cherished?

                      -7 year old daughter - according to the math, this means that things haven't been good in your marriage since before she was born.

                      -He is your best friend. But you mention that you two don't talk, that he doesn't listen to you. Is that the kind of best friend you deserve or that you want for your daughter someday? Life, marriage is never perfect...there are trials and tribulations...dark times and bright times....but when the dark times overshadow the bright times for years and years, there comes a point where you need to ask yourself if you're doing the right thing.

                      -Addiction - Everyone focuses on the addict. But what about the way this has affected you? What about the way this has affected and shaped your daughter? This WILL affect her. I grew up with an alcoholic father. He was a wonderful person....sweet hearted, funny....but he was an addict. I was thinking yesterday that almost every guy I have ever dated has turned out to be some type of addict. I didn't know that when I started dating them. Coincidence? Or attracted to the traits of my father?

                      -Verbalizing desire to sleep with other women - This part is a kicker for me. And quite honestly, it hurt my heart for you when I read it. You've been through h e double l with this guy, you've been loyal, you've raised your child in times when he likely wasn't "present"due to his addiction, you've dealt with lack of affection and lack of sexual intimacy, you've stuck by his side and now he's finally, finally clean.......and what is your payback? "I want to sleep with other women." HE is resentful because he never slept with anyone else?! I'm sorry, but you're dealing with a very, very selfish man who seemingly does not deserve your loyal, sweet heart.

                      I'm not advocating that you leave him right now. I am advocating that you think about all these things and acknowledge them verbally to yourself and then ask yourself what you truly want for yourself and your daughter.

                      "Be what you're looking for."

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                      • #12
                        I still don't understand the lack of sex, even after the clarifications. It seems like you both have strong sex drives and have been faithful - at least sexually. Why are you going for years without? That's a killer for a marriage. You need to have some kind of erotic intimacy or you just start feeling like glorified roommates.
                        "Those sowing seed with tears
                        Will reap with a joyful shout." - Psalm 126

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                        • #13
                          Oh, and welcome to WH. We are SO super glad that you're here.
                          "Be what you're looking for."

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                          • #14
                            Open marriages/relationship can be a wonderful thing and there are many (way more that you image) people in those type of relationships. However, starting an open relationship can also end your current one. The primary reason is that people use the open relationship to fix problems in the current relationship. In your relationship, the lack of communication and the sexlessness are alone huge problems. If you do go into the open relationship routine, I will guarantee you things will go very badly.

                            You need to fix your current relationship. If both of you want sex, you need to figure out why you aren't having sex with each other. Work on the communication. Don't start talking only when it gets to the critical point like it did with the addiction. Once things are resolved in your current relationship, then you can bring the possibility of opening things up. However, based on what you have said so far, I'm pretty sure your husband isn't really going to want want it any more. Not saying he would say not, just that it won't be such a priority for him.
                            Freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose - Kris Kristofferson and Fred Foster (sung by Janis Joplin)

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                            • #15
                              wondering how you are doing haven?

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