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Would really appreciate your thoughts and support . . .

(20 Posts)
justneedhandholding Mon 17-Jun-13 11:11:53

I am not really sure what I am going to achieve by starting this but I just cannot talk to anyone in RL about this as feel embarrassed/sad/stressed and just not ready to talk about it to anyone. This may be long so I apologised but feel I need to explain properly. I am a regular and have NC.

Basically DH and I have always had a brilliant relationship, we have always fancied each other, got on well and do lovely things with and without the DCs.

He is quite a friendly bloke (not flirty) but we have had issues in the past, particularly at work as he is very kind to people and some people take advantage of him, not in a sexual way but it leads to him becoming friends with some of the women and we both agree in his position there it is not appropriate. I want to be clear (not making excuses) but this hasn't been about him cheating or them wanting to have affairs with him but there just has to be a professional line which I just think he is not great with - he likes to be everyones friend and keep everyone happy. He is open with his phone/passwords/facebook etc also.

He has been through a lot, death of his mum who was fairly young, redundancy, further job insecurity and an amazing work opportunity falling through. He doesn't talk much about stuff and bottles things up. He was been abused as a child and his mum left him when he was 18 months old, he dad is an alcoholic and the only stable person in his life was his step mum (who is the one who died).

So - the problem at the moment. Since his mum died 18 months ago our sex life has not been great, its fantastic when it happens but is not that frequent. We talk about doing it more but then slip back into old patterns. There was an incident a few weeks ago where we were staying in a hotel together, child free, and we got into bed and the first thing he did was pick up his i-pad. I commented on it and he put it down and started to instigate sex, I admittedly was pissed off about it so maybe didn't react to him that well at first but after a minute or so I thought to myself 'get a grip' and started to touch him but he was not aroused at all. I was shocked as this has never happened.

He was mortified, we talked, he said he didn't think I was enjoying it, it was an awful moment and he actually made himself sick over it. In the morning he said he really thought I wasn't enjoying it and thats why it happened. He was ill as he was so upset he'd made me feel so bad.

Since then there has been issues with him getting aroused, we have manage to have sex a couple of times but mainly him instigating as when it is more spontanious he says he has a mental block and can't get an erection. He is devastated, I have questioned if it is guilt/affair/doesn't fancy me and he is doing everything to convince me that is not the case. He is so scared it is a medical/psychological thing that can't be fixed.

He feels he is a failure and is so sad about it all, he says me and the DCs are his world. I 99.9% believe that it is stress/grief or something like that but am I fooling myself that it could be that and not that he doesn't fancy me or is having an affair (there are no other changes or signs).

So sorry it is so long, thank you for reading!

justneedhandholding Mon 17-Jun-13 11:58:39

goodness its really long - sorry!!!

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 17-Jun-13 12:00:14

If the problem started when his DM died then it sounds like it's not a coincidence. If he's grieving, stressed, scared, upset, anxious, depressed and making himself sick etc. it's not going to help sexual arousal which is as much psychological as it is biological. What is going to help, I'd have thought, is seeing a GP about the problem rather than fretting that it's something that 'can't be fixed'. He may need counselling or he may just need reassurance, relaxation techniques and a bit of time. Nothing is scarier than not knowing.

justneedhandholding Mon 17-Jun-13 12:08:34

After his DM died the sex became less frequent, we both felt incredibly sad of course so it wasn't on our minds I suppose then we just stayed 'out of the habit'. There were no 'performance' problems until 3 weeks ago.

I feel sad and scared as does he, most of me believes there are no other underlying issues. He said the only thing he believes he is good at is being a good husband and father and now he can't even make love to his wife. I have told him that doesn't make him a bad husband!

He has booked a doctors appointment but the first available one is in 2 weeks time!

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 17-Jun-13 12:40:45

Sounds like a crisis of confidence. 'Only thing he's good at'?

justneedhandholding Mon 17-Jun-13 13:07:35

I know, its so sad to hear him talking like that.

He has a really good job, he is not qualified in his field as he was about to take his finals when his dad and step mum split up and he ended up giving up his exams to look after his mum and run their business (it makes me cross she allowed that but thats another story!).

He is intelligent and funny, has fab friends, has been best man 6 times (so must be a good friend also). He is quite sporty but I think he has never excelled at stuff at school or sports but still did well.

I come from a musical/sporty family and also am very academic and am qualified in the same field he is in. I don't think he is resentful as such but I think it has added to him feeling down on himself at the moment.

justneedhandholding Mon 17-Jun-13 15:26:18

Gosh sorry such long posts - my head is all over the place!

Imnotagilmoregirl Mon 17-Jun-13 21:06:49

The only things I can suggest are to support him at the docs (even if you don't go in, wait with/for him), keep up with cuddles, hand holds, anything physical thats gentle, reassure him that you love him and try and keep up communication. Try and get as much time just the two of you where possible, even if you go bowling or something(!) just to take the pressure off. Have patience with yourself too, you're going through it with him and its tough stuff xx

justneedhandholding Mon 17-Jun-13 22:01:30

Thank you I am really going to try that. Its really hard though as part of me wants to shut myself away also!

I think in a few days I may feel more settled though, its all a bit raw and surreal right now.

Thanks for your advice, I feel more reassured, i guess i was thinking the worst about it all xx

Lweji Mon 17-Jun-13 22:22:47

I'm not sure I understood what happened in the hotel.
You called on him for sex, he obliged, you sulked, then decided to respond, then found out he was not aroused and had a shock?
And he threw up over this?

Tbh, you don't come across as particularly supporting of him, rather possibly adding to his stress.

What do you mean spontaneous vs him instigating?
Unless you booked sex in advance, surely him instigating can be spontaneous.
And he's entitled not to feel in the mood, and let you know when he does.

Or am I just getting it wrong?

justneedhandholding Tue 18-Jun-13 06:13:55

Sorry you are getting it all wrong. It may come across unsupportive as I am asking from my perspective not his. I really am supportive but it is affecting me too. He is talking to me and the gp but for his sake I don't feel I cqn talk to anyone in rl.

I guess I meant spontaneous as in me instigating and not waiting for him - worded badly.

It is not about him being in the mood - in the the past there has never been an occasion where either of us hasn't been in the mood so this is all very different than normal.

Its hard to explain what happened in the hotel, yes admittedly I sulked about it, just felt we don't get many nights away so the fact his first thought was to play a game on his ipad which pissed me off, I am not saying I was right to do that. He said he thought I seemed tired and was going to sleep which is why he did that. he laid there a a while then suddenly said he felt sick, it was very weird but maybe non related, he thinks it was stress related.

Since then things have been as I explained.

Lweji Tue 18-Jun-13 06:27:26

I think he may really need counselling, but it also sounds as if he needs some pressure off him.

justneedhandholding Tue 18-Jun-13 06:31:30

Definitely, there is no chance I could even think about asking for or instigating sex, it wouldn't be fair on either of us. The only pressure he has ar the moment is from himself.

justneedhandholding Tue 18-Jun-13 14:15:35

Just want to say thank you to those who have replied, MN is the only place I feel I can turn to at the moment but just as a warning (I don't want to say too much in case it is not really allowed) but because of this thread I started received PMs from a man claiming to be giving me a mans perspective about my problem.

I stupidly assumed that he was PM'ing because it was a personal subject however it does not seem his intentions were that at all. I reported to MN but just thought I would let you know to be on your guard for this type of thing. I searched for his nickname and he really wasn't all he seemed.

I really can't believe I was so naive but I am also livid that I have put myself out there with all those personal, hard to discuss details and he tried to take advantage of that.

Helltotheno Tue 18-Jun-13 14:24:42

That's the internet for ya smile

It's obvious you're upset and I dont' want to be harsh but
I too think you need to defocus from this one particular incident somewhat. Have you read up on the all-encompassing effects of abuse, from sexual issues to lack of self-esteem to intimacy issues? Plus there are the abandonment issues no doubt caused by his mum upping and leaving when he was a baby. I think you're very much looking at him now in a superficial way as a totality (ie good job, great person, lots of friends etc.) without necessarily seeing or understanding how deeply and fundamentally he's been affected by all he's gone through.

A penis not being erect now and then isn't all that in terms of serious issues in a relationship. I think give it time and support him in other ways.

justneedhandholding Tue 18-Jun-13 14:41:15

I totally understand what you are saying but I guess because we have never had these sorts of issues we have both taken it quite badly. I don't see it as a bad think that I think he is wonderful though.

I completely accept I don't understand what he has gone through but I am trying to be as supportive as possible. If I don't sound that way on here it is more about trying to articulate what I want to say whilst feeling a bit emotional.

Libertymae Tue 18-Jun-13 14:41:22

justneedhandholding, what a shitty experience with that pervert troll. Put it out of your mind, and don't let him upset you.

I think you sound like a supportive person and that overall your relationship is and has been pretty good.

It certainly appears to me likely to be a grief/stress thing, and therefore temporary, rather than anything more sinister like an affair - but really, you're the only one who can tell for sure.

What about taking it as an opportunity to start discovering each other sexually again? Tell him full sex is off the menu totally for maybe two months - giving him the time and space to sort out whatever is upsetting him - but you'd love to kiss and cuddle him as much as possible whenever you can. I think full-on proper 'making out' is one of those things you just tend to stop doing when you've been in a relationship for ever and ever, but actually it's pretty hot!

When the pressure is totally off him to 'perform', he'll most likely relax with you, and then you can start building up to second and third base/ telling each other naughty stories/whatever works for you. You'll improve the intimacy between the two of you for a start, and with a bit of luck, he'll end up so turned on that the physical side and any residual 'mental block' will eventually take care of itself......

justneedhandholding Tue 18-Jun-13 14:45:41

Thank you, I was a bit stunned by him asking if I had considered 'going elsewhere!'

I agree with the making out thing, it is one of those things that kind of gets forgotten about, I really think we need to go back to basics to take the pressure off. I really don't think its medical but because it has happened once it is on his mind every time.

I am fairly certain it is not an affair but at first every possible reason went through my head. He said to me today I am the only person he has ever wanted/needed and ever will. I do believe him.

DHtotalnob Tue 18-Jun-13 15:18:42

What Liberty said ^^

I think you sound very supportive and you seem to have a great relationship in general. The 'problem' with happy and settled relationships is that when you hit a bumpy bit you (both) don't really know what to do and may end up panicking and magnifying existing issues or facts in an attempt to explain things. Yes, the trigger may well be something within the dynamic of the relationship, but it's certainly won't be the whole thing.

I don't have the answer, but keep talking, don't over analyse, do things together that are firmly at the pants-on end of the spectrum ..... and go to the cinema and get snogging.


justneedhandholding Tue 18-Jun-13 15:39:15

I am very guilty of over analysing, will try all those things you have all suggested!

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