Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Coping strategies needed (probably tmi)

(344 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

Toastandstrawberryjam Sun 15-Sep-13 10:14:03

This isn't an easy subject to ask about and possibly some people will find it distasteful and for that I apologise.

I need coping strategies to help me get through having sex with my H. For reasons I can't go into leaving is not an option for a few years. It just isn't. I wholly wish it was.

But because we are not intimate with each other (my choice) tension is very high in the house. Intolerably so. The only answer to this (and I know because I know it's all that works) is for me to recommence relationships with a man who quite frankly makes my skin crawl. He is EA and has no respect for me, not exactly a turn on.

The last time I finally gave in after a month of demands, I felt ill and dirty for days afterwards. Is there anyway (other than getting very drunk) I can cope better with this? Meditation gets me through the act, so to speak but the thoughts afterwards are the problem.

I'm wondering if it's better done in the morning, hold it together and get the kids to school after then a very hot bath and try to blot it out. Sleeping afterwards never works.

I know it shouldn't be like this. I just need help getting the next few years out of the way. Any ideas?

Xenadog Sun 15-Sep-13 17:53:09

OP you have decided on your course of action and nothing said on here has changed your mind even though I believe you have received a great deal of sensible, sensitive and considered advice.

By all means stay with this abusive man but rest assured your children will realise something terrible is going on and this will damage them. Much, if not more, than you leaving.

So you need to know how to get on with it- if it was me I would draw up a contract with how often, what you will do and won't do and stipulate a condom, breath freshened etc, whatever you need.

You are basically whoring yourself out to this man and if that's something you accept then fine - make sure that the cost of this is worth it in the long run. Obviously it's not just you paying this price though is it? BTW I know this sounds judgemental and I don't really want to but I'd do think your judgement is skewed.

Havea0 Sun 15-Sep-13 17:53:17

Toast. Because of what you have been through, that is a reason why you cant cope with this.
You dont really know or understand how a normal loving relationship works. it is not your fault.

I am sitting here thinking of books that could help you with this. And I realise I dont actually know of any. Strange isnt it.

If you google "how a normal loving relationship works" that should start you off in the right direction.

MissStrawberry Sun 15-Sep-13 17:56:01

You didn't answer my question. Of course you don't have too but maybe if you answered it to yourself you would realise you are living a lie for no gain.

You said you are staying for the sake of your children as you want them to have a good life. Yet he does nothing with them and is horrible to them. When and where are they having a good childhood?

Everyone knows the name of the more private place. Posting the acronyms just helps those who don't know, and some who shouldn't, find it. Use some common sense.

Toastandstrawberryjam Sun 15-Sep-13 17:57:32

Havea0 - think you are spot on with that. It's what my counsellor spent a long time working on with me. Trying to show me what was the right way for a relationship to be. But it's like trying to learn a foreign language. I find it hard to understand.

KeemaNaanAndCurryOn Sun 15-Sep-13 17:57:37

You sound like my friend and my heart breaks for you like it does for her. She's been going to leave in a year for several years now. I'm watching her die slowly.

Please don't sleep with him. It won't make it better off fix things.

MissStrawberry Sun 15-Sep-13 17:59:08

I am so sad that people are so downtrodden they have to ask if it is okay to say no to their husband having sex on them when they don't want it and if mum's unhappiness is worth it if the kids are happy.

YOUR KIDS ARE NOT HAPPY and are going to feel pretty shit when they find out what you went through for them to stay in the status quo. That is the idyllic life you appear to think you are giving them.

Months ago a poster posted and it took 5-6 threads but with lots of help she got out and from what I last read she is out of an abusive situation and her children are with her.

He doesn't do anything. He just won't engage with them. But if I agree to it then he's like father of the year for a week or so afterwards. And that makes them so happy.

The way this man relates to his own children IS NOT YOUR RESPONSIBILITY. I know you want to make him be the good father they deserve, but you can't actually do that. Because even if he is treating them well, he is abusing their mother, which is never going to be part of being a good father. I'm afraid this (him being a decent father to your children) is not in your control.

He is what he is.

You can choose to put yourself through this nightmare of unwanted sex, but if you do, that still doesn't give them a good father, so please don't kid yourself that this will benefit your children.

I am so sorry you have already been abused in your life. Please don't allow any more. It really won't help your children.

You need to break the cycle of abuse and stop believing that you should allow this for the greater good of the others in the house.

Because that belief that you hold is harming you.

KatyTheCleaningLady Sun 15-Sep-13 18:01:38

It's not right to do this to yourself. You can't understand what "right" is because you've been abused by so many people.

If you stand up to him and refuse to do what he wants, things will go better for you and your children.

dreamingbohemian Sun 15-Sep-13 18:02:34

I think you will find it a lot easier to understand how healthy relationships work once you get away from this man. As long as you stay he is just undermining everything you are learning and making you doubt yourself.

Hatpin Sun 15-Sep-13 18:05:09

The relationship between your H and your DC is not your responsibility.

Just tell him your sexual relationship is over, and move into the spare room.

Your children will not be any more damaged by knowing you don't sleep together anymore than they will be already.

onenutshortofasnickers Sun 15-Sep-13 18:07:28

why don't you give him permission to 'fulfill his needs' the abusive twathead that you should leave with someone else?

op that is wrong btw but its better than you being raped for 2 years.

you are wrong to think you can't leave now, so very wrong- you should have left yesterday but your not going to listen to any real advice and you cannot ever force yourself to have sex if you don't want to.

this is just all so wrong.

ChangingWoman Sun 15-Sep-13 18:10:17

Should a wife say no to sex which makes her skin crawl?

Discounting the "gun to head" scenario, absolutely. Every time. Without question. Women who haven't been traumatised by the kind of abuse you have been through probably wouldn't even consider it as an option.

It may have taken me years to get my alcoholic exH out of the house and fully divorced but I never once considered even kissing him after I began to find him repellant and accepted that divorce was inevitable. I did other stupid things to keep the peace while he was still living in my house (e.g. letting him share meals or borrow DVDs) but having sex wouldn't have occurred to me.

It takes time to understand abuse. It takes time to make an exit plan to leave an abusive relationship. It definitely takes time to go through a divorce.

Saying no to sex with someone who disgusts you can be done without delay and long in advance of other steps to escape from an abusive situation.

MissStrawberry Sun 15-Sep-13 18:11:19

Your children are happy when he isn't acting like the twat he is but equally on edge wondering when it will stop and daddy will revert to being the man who is mean to them and ignores them.

DebrisSlide Sun 15-Sep-13 18:15:30

What a distressing thead.

Toast, when you weigh up the costs and benefits of the 2 year thing, can you accept that perhaps you are misjudging the value of them because your frame of reference is skewed? i.e. overstating the benefit and understating the costs?

I may be barking up the wrong tree here, but if your counsellor is one affiliated to a religious organisation, may I suggest that you seek one out from

You do not have to accept anything being done to your body that you do not wish to happen. Your husband has no right to use you like this. You are worth more than this.

Please speak to Womans Aid on 0808 2000 247 or Rape Crisis on 0330 001 2165 before you decide to have any kind of confrontation with your husband. They can help you with a plan. Also, Rights of Women on 020 7490 7689 may help give a different slant on the legalities of your situation.

Good luck - sending your strength.

LollyPop87 Sun 15-Sep-13 18:16:06

Reading this thread is heart breaking.

OP, I have been in your situation. In my case, I was too scared to leave as I was scared about what he might do if I did.

But I have been in your situation with the emotional abuse and the sex.

I tried everything. Everything and anything to try and detatch myself. I tried everything you could possibly think of.

None of it worked. It just made it more and more soul destroying. It was horrendous. It was made worse by the fact that he knew I didn't want to do it, but seemingly didn't care.

OP, I have no advice. I understand and respect what you are saying and how you feel. But please, please don't put yourself through sex when you don't want it. It is too awful.

I hope and pray that you can find another option and that you can get out as soon as possible. You don't deserve this.

Whatever you do, please don't put yourself through what you're suggesting. Even if you wanted to, it is not possible. Its impossible to detach yourself from something like that. Please don't even try.

I know, for me, I thought if I could detach myself, it would solve so many problems. It would give me some breathing space. Buy me some more time. It seemed like an easy option if I looked at it practically. But it's impossible. It really, really, truly is impossible. It is mentally and physically impossible.

I hope you can get out sooner than you think.

KiteSurfer Sun 15-Sep-13 18:16:38

Is it that you can't leave (as in physically can't) or won't leave?

LunaticFringe Sun 15-Sep-13 18:17:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JulieMumsnet (MNHQ) Sun 15-Sep-13 18:17:21


Thank you for the reports about this thread.

We understand why people are concerned and we do urge you to seek help in real life with this, Toast. There's a list of places where you can turn to for support here.

We're wishing you all the best.


DebrisSlide Sun 15-Sep-13 18:21:01

Sorry, the Rights of Women number is 020 7251 6577

TootiesFrootie Sun 15-Sep-13 18:29:08

OP. I would be horrified if I thought my mother stayed in an abusive relationship and had sex with someone she hated for my benefit.
Your children can be just as happy and secure with seperated parents.

Personally, I just couldn't have sex with someone just to keep the peace and I can't think of anything that would make it 'better'. Maybe, if you keep refusing then he will stop trying to force/persuade (?) you.

OxfordBags Sun 15-Sep-13 18:34:28

I knew you would have been abused as a child, much as I hate to be right. You say that is the reason why you should be able to cope with this sex situation, but your past actually makes you less able to cope with. Because you were not allowed to have or understand normal, proper boundaries about your body and sex, you do not have or understand them now. You were not allowed a say in what happened sexually to you, and now you do not feel you have a right to. You had to cut off to cope, didn't you - and now you cut off (dissociate) to cope too, with alcohol, and talking of dettol baths as though they are normal (it made me feel sick and tearful to read it, btw).

But what you were also taught by abuse as a child, is the wrong belief that you can control what happens to you by your own actions.

Now then, think about this: your OH is unpleasant and ignores your DC... Then he is all sweetness and light for a bit. And yet, their mother's mood dips correspondingly. They might not understand how and why, but they will guess that mum is doing something that makes her suffer that makes dad be nicer to them. Not only does that place a big burden of guilt on them, it teaches them that you can make abusers be nice to you if you give them what they want, that you can and should be responsible for someone either being nice or nasty to you. In other words, you are training any daughters to be victims and any sons to be abusers.

You learnt these patterns in childhood, why on earth do you think they won't be learning them too? There is abuse in there home, do not think they are not being abused and damaged because his abuse of them is not physical or sexual.

Finally, a husband or partner has no more right to have sex with you than a stranger on the street. It legally rape forhim to have sex on you if you don't want it. The fact that you even have to ask shows that you are deeply troubled and damaged in this area.

OxfordBags Sun 15-Sep-13 18:37:32

I also want to add that if there is a religious and cultural element to this then know this: if there is any single god, deity, whatever, that would condone a man treating his family this way, then that being is pure evil and should not be believed in. Any religion that would make you stay is twisted beyond belief.

ageofgrandillusion Sun 15-Sep-13 18:53:05

Dont want this to come out the wrong way but is your household strict muslim OP? And are their wider issues of respect in the community etc if you leave?

BlackAffronted Sun 15-Sep-13 18:59:25

Shame on those who are sending the OP messages in private on how to cope with being raped sad

ageofgrandillusion Sun 15-Sep-13 19:11:26

Its called pragmatism Black. The OP has made her position clear, people should respect that.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now