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Temporary dip in our sex life or is my wife just not that into me?

(54 Posts)
GrandpaInMyMicrowave Mon 03-Feb-14 07:19:36

We have two children, both difficult births for my wife. Our sex life isn't back on track yet. We've had many heart to hearts. However there is a very real gap in our libidos and it had been putting a strain on our relationship.
I had come to terms with the fact that our sex lives just needed time, perhaps another few years until the children are back at school. In the mean time we've been managing sex a couple of times a month. It might have been more but my wife has struggled with various ailments: serious tooth trouble culminating in a very painful root canal treatment, coil fitted, heavy periods, sick children over X-Mas etc).
This weekend I took the kids away for the day to give DW her regular (fortnightly) day off. In the evening I used the computer and spotted on the icloud tabs in safari that she had been looking at porn. There were two porn video sites and another with erotic stories.
Later that evening I was hoping 'tonight was the night', and her tooth ache flared up again. I believe it is very sore - the abscess is clearly visible.
I'm not particular bothered about her looking at porn, but I was more concerned about her later deleting her history. (And yes I admit to snooping on her phone to see what she was looking at).
I think I'm worrying over nothing but I wondered if anyone could provide an alternative perspective on this.

NorksAreMessy Mon 03-Feb-14 07:29:02

What does your wife say when you talk to her?

GrandpaInMyMicrowave Mon 03-Feb-14 07:40:29

It's been difficult to talk to her about it. I'm weighing up if I should. If this is normal then it seems stupid to open up an old 'wound'.

Keepithidden Mon 03-Feb-14 09:07:48

There could be many different scenarios I suppose Grandpa, but the two ones I'd think are most likley are:

1) She's masurbating over porn and prefers that to sex (easier, quicker, less painful, embarassing, whatever...)
2) She's trying to use porn to kick-start her own libido, get her in the mood if you will.

Probably best you ask her about it though.

asgard Mon 03-Feb-14 09:22:43

what is the rest of your relationship like do you share occasional touches, hold hands. how old are your children? If shes looking at porn then she has a sex drive. what was it like in the begining?

lavesh Mon 03-Feb-14 10:51:42

Any pressure at all (heart to hearts etc) can be a real passion killer for the person struggling as sex then seems like a duty, something they 'ought' to be doing/enjoying - not sexy.

Could you start by just saying you saw the internet history by accident and could you watch the videos together if that's what's floating her boat at the moment. Then see where things go? Keep things low key and gain her trust again?

GrandpaInMyMicrowave Mon 03-Feb-14 16:43:52

The obvious answer seems to be to talk about it, given that I originally saw her open webpages innocently I think my actions so far have been justified.
However I have already been in the position of too much talk = pressure and ending up being counter productive, so I am wary of this.
To answer some of the other questions above:
We are very close, we describe ourselves as best friends. There is affection but I'd like more, and I think there is an imbalance. With two small children (2 and 4) we don't get to hold hands much. We had our first weekend away from DCs in four years recently and we realised how little we get to hold hands with the children always in tow.
When we last spoke I told her how the lack of sex was having an effect on my confidence. She reassured me that the lack of sex was not because she didn't find me sexually attractive, it was because she didn't have those feelings at the moment.
However, I've seen posts on a thread on mumsnet from her which indicate that isn't completely true (again a case of my wife being indiscreet, not me snooping).

JoinYourPlayfellows Mon 03-Feb-14 16:48:27

I can't get past the visible abscess shock

You probably need some advice from women who use porn to masturbate alone. I've never met one.

GrandpaInMyMicrowave Mon 03-Feb-14 16:55:43

Bearing in mind my wife has used her phone to passify DS since I became aware of the porn (who likes to random combinations of buttons and could conceivably open the web browser), how seriously should I take this aspect of her porn browsing? I know for certain the pages have been open in the browser while he has been 'playing', but the browser itself wouldn't have been left open.
The page has relatively hard core images, no penetration but naked breasts and an erect penis.

ALittleStranger Mon 03-Feb-14 17:10:43

Hmm, I'd be inclined not to mention it, but definitely find another way to talk about your sex life in general. She may be embarrassed about it given the deleting. My hunch was she was watching it to try and kickstart her libido. She's likely perfectly aware that there is a problem, appears to be trying to fix it, and I think any pressure won't be helpful.

Domestic drudgery sucks, even being "best friends" is a passion killer. You have to be the man she wants to fuck, not a confidente, not a co-parent. When you say you've seen threads, do you mean she's said on here that she doesn't find you sexually attractive? I think there's a blurry line between someone being sexually attractive and just seeing someone sexually.

DixieGoesToHollywood Mon 03-Feb-14 17:12:06

If you were a woman posting this the responses would be very different biscuit

And no, it is not acceptable to leave porn on feasible access of a toddler.

JoinYourPlayfellows Mon 03-Feb-14 17:14:58

If you were a woman posting this the responses would be very different

I'm guessing that's the point of the thread.

It reads very "reverse the genders" to me.

HappyGoLuckyGirl Mon 03-Feb-14 17:15:47

I would definitely talk to her about her porn use on her phone. Forget everything that's wrong with replacing a healthy sex life with solo porn use, if she is letting your child use her phone while there are images of porn on there then that is a child protection issue and needs to be addressed.

ALittleStranger Mon 03-Feb-14 17:21:07

Oh god it is a reverse genders thing isn't it? The whole "child protection issue" was recently rubbished on another thread about a man letting his toddler use a phone with porn on...

GrandpaInMyMicrowave Mon 03-Feb-14 17:22:08

I saw a single thread talking about threesomes and how she fantasises about them 'a lot'. How she gets antsy every so often.
Later in the thread she described me as very vanilla. Nothing hugely negative - but then that's only what I've seen.

GrandpaInMyMicrowave Mon 03-Feb-14 17:23:29

ALittleStranger - I'm more than happy if the consensus is that I shouldn't worry. I do wonder what she'd say if the tables were turned.

GrandpaInMyMicrowave Mon 03-Feb-14 17:25:29

Definitely not reverse genders thing. In fact I'd rather this post didn't go too far down that line.

JoinYourPlayfellows Mon 03-Feb-14 17:28:01

Clue 1: a woman is masturbating to pictures of erect penises

DixieGoesToHollywood Mon 03-Feb-14 17:28:24

Imagine this post from a woman:

"My husband won't have sex with me as he says he's too tired, but I found out he's been home alone watching porn in secret while I'm out with the kids, he also lets our toddler play on the phone with the porn accessible. I've recently found out he's been posting online about having threesomes and calling me vanilla"

That is basically the OPs post if he were a woman. We see posts like that a lot, yet the replies here seem somewhat different hmm

HappyGoLuckyGirl Mon 03-Feb-14 17:32:43

ALittleStranger - I think allowing a toddler to play with a phone that has porn on it is definitely a child protection issue. You don't?

ALittleStranger Mon 03-Feb-14 17:34:44

Well I don't work in child protection so wouldn't actually offer an opinion on something that is very specific. But someone who did work in child protection posted on the very recent thread where a man was doing this and said it wasn't a child protection issue.

Oly4 Mon 03-Feb-14 17:39:46

Hello op, I hope I can shed some light on this for you. I have a very loving caring husband but our sex life has also dwindled due to kids. I watch porn reasonably regularly for masturbation purposes. I definitely have a sex drive but out sex life never seems to be right timing. We have no time together on a morning when I have most energy. At night we just fall into bed exhausted after caring for our kids and long days at work. Porn for me is just a 'quick fix'. I adore my partner and still fancy him. We recently talked about our sex life and acknowledged that having kids means we're tired all the time. However, we've decided that intimacy is really important to a relationship and so we're going to try harder to have more regular sex, tired or not. I think you SHOULD talk to your partner. Tell her you're not pressuring her but the lack of sex is affecting your confidence and makes you feel rejected. I honestly believe that relationships can't survive without sex - I told my partner this. One of you is likely to meet someone at some point who stirs up those long lost sexual feelings and wham, you could well have an affair situation on yor hands. Tell her you're worried this could happen (not as threat, it could happen to either of you). Talk to her, don't let this situation get worse. It is important to you and therefore it needs to be important to her. Don't let her fob you off. The last thing I want to do is lose my partner and I bet she feels the same about you. Good luck

Foodylicious Mon 03-Feb-14 17:40:56

I really would not give it another thought. for most people (I think!) sex with a partner, alone masturbation and fantasies can all be very separate from each other. (Maybe get her to lock down her phone though)
Fantasies are often just that, with no real desire to turn them into a reality. Masturbation can satisfy quite a different sexual desire/impulse and emotional need to having sex with your partner.
Stick with trying to be close and intimate i.e.cuddles, foot rubs etc, but with no agenda. Some men fall into the trap into thinking something will get their partner 'in the mood'. women will spot this a mile off, so if you can go with hugs, foot rubs etc and then not 'make the move' so she is reassured that you are doing it because you genuinely want to be close, not just as a route to sex - if you see what I mean?!?
equally though women can be sensitive if you don't let them know you do still desire them from time to time.
I am afraid we are set of trick buggers really!
Good luck

sykadelic Mon 03-Feb-14 18:02:54

I was going to agree with the comments that it is likely an attempt to kick-start her libido but then I read what she said about "vanilla" and "threesomes"... it could be she wants more but is afraid to ask in case it turns you off?

The vanilla thing would really hurt my feelings but at least that's all it was (being called vanilla is better that "horrible in bed"). Maybe you could use it to your advantage (as bad as that sounds) by asking her about trying different things. Maybe you could change up the foreplay a bit to start with.

Allowing the child to play with her phone and porn coming up would bother me though and it needs to be discussed.

I would probably have a conversation. She'll be wildly embarrassed most likely but just tell her your primary concern is it coming up on her phone with the kids and all. Then maybe you could segue into a conversation about what she's into and if there's anything she'd like to try... really depends on your relationship as to how this would go.

Good luck and just to reiterate, no I don't think your wife has gone off you, but maybe she'd like to try some new things (some people fantasize about things but wouldn't ever want it in real life) and maybe you'd enjoy that too!

HerdyHerdwick Mon 03-Feb-14 18:20:00

OP, so your wife has been posting about the issues in your relationship here at MN. Can you not see how PA it is of you to then start your own thread, and casually mention that she's been asking here for advice? I don't see how we can help. You've seen what she's written about you - you need to talk to her, not us about this.

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