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DH doesn't fancy me anymore.

(58 Posts)
Nightzone Mon 28-Dec-15 10:18:38

Been together 14 years, married for 8, one DD aged 6.

We have a happy marriage in general and get on well etc. we have no money worries or anything and life is generally good.

However in the last few years our sex life has dwindled to a point where it is now once every 3/4 months and always instigated by me. We have spoken about this and always end the conversation with a "must try harder" no blame is attached and I take equal responsibility but nothing ever changes.

We had the conversation again last night and he came out with this. It is very hurtful. He said he loves me but is not physically attracted to me any more. I have put on weight since DD was born and I think this puts him off. He isn't exactly the bloke I met 14 years ago either but clearly can't appreciate that people change.

Where do we go from here? Is there no return from this?

Northernnights Mon 28-Dec-15 11:42:34

Have you told him he is no longer the hunk he once was either?
Sex is often described as the glue that holds a marriage together. Without sex, you are just housemates.
If you love your husband, I suggest you have a frank discussion about this. Counselling may help.
My uninformed opinion is do not diet/ have a makeover/ wear nipple tassels to attempt to arouse his sexual interest. I suspect he is trying to check out of the marriage. Has he changed himself in anyway? There is a 'script' when an affair is brewing. It may be worth having a look.
If you do change your appearance, do it for you. Make changes that are good for you. And if you feel you already are fabulous, stay fabulous for you. I know of wives who have lost weight and spent a fortune at the beautician only for their marriage to end anyway as their husbands had emotionally ended their marriage already.
Good luck.

JeanSeberg Mon 28-Dec-15 11:49:23

Cherchez la femme is my first thought, sorry.

Thankgodforthat Mon 28-Dec-15 11:55:42

I don't see that there's a great deal you can do. If you radically changed your appearance and started getting fit and socialising more he might sit up and take notice but more likely than not the feelings will have gone and he doesn't see you in that way any more sadly.

My attitude would be stuff you then, go. Call his bluff. If he doesn't want to be with you any more you have to let him go. Don't put up with second best either or try to desperately hang on to your marriage.

He might have had his head turned I'm afraid.

Nightzone Mon 28-Dec-15 12:08:23

I haven't found any evidence of an affair but that's not to say it isn't happening. This has been a gradual drift since our DD was born. Never been quite the same since then. I am a size 14 so not that overweight but it seems he just doesn't get me anymore. I had a new haircut recently and he basically said he hated it when all my friends loved it!

I fear for the future.

Enoughalreadyyou Mon 28-Dec-15 12:23:05

This sort of happened to me but I didn't question it and years later found evidence of sex addiction to porn and escorts. Just saying be aware of this as a possibility.
Keep vigilant and check what he's doing.
Or just get rid. He's obviously checking out for some reason and it's not you or your fault.
If you want to become a better you in the new year do it for you and never ever do the pick me dance of shame.
He's saying nasty things to you to justify something. Tell him to fuck off.
How dare he try to lower your already vulnerable self esteem. Get away from the fucker.

JohnLuther Mon 28-Dec-15 12:26:52

I'm sorry OP but it can happen, I ended a relationship because I no longer found her attractive. What was I meant to do, stay with her even though I no longer fancied her?

Enoughalreadyyou Mon 28-Dec-15 12:29:22

Yes but we're you married with dc. And why did you no longer find her attractive? There will have been a reason.

JohnLuther Mon 28-Dec-15 12:34:58

No we weren't married with kids fortunately so I probably shouldn't have brought it up, she put on weight (went to a size 18) and she no longer wanted to do anything. At the time I was no looker (getting better with age!) but I no longer fancied her so unfortunately we split. At the time I felt awful but I made the right decision.

lampshady Mon 28-Dec-15 12:36:36

I would say, if you want to make changes do it for you. There's no reason your marriage can't get back on track but I imagine it'll take time to get over the hurt he's caused. Is there an activity or class you've always wanted to try? How are your friendships?

It may be that in finding yourself, you no longer are satisfied in the marriage.

TheHoneyBadger Mon 28-Dec-15 12:43:21

hey op - sorry you're coping with hearing this.

i would ask him whether he's still attracted to other people, still feels aroused, masturbates etc (sorry to be frank). it's possible and worth finding out whether it's not actually personal and that in fact it's him who has lost his mojo and his sense of himself as a sexual person.

i'm just thinking that whereas a woman might think 'i've gone off sex' perhaps for some men they interpret it as 'i've gone off of my wife' itms.

Joysmum Mon 28-Dec-15 12:46:08

I really struggle with threads like this as my weight fluctuates within a 6.5 stone limit as I have Binge Eating Disorder.

My DH isn't slim either but for both of us, we are attracted by the person and not the body. Sex is good because it's about pleasing the person not making use of their body.

If physicality were the overriding factor in relationships and sex then they'd be a lot of lonely people out there unable to find long term partners because of weight, age, looks etc.

Physicality would make us want to trade in for the same model we were attracted to 20 years ago when we first got together with our partners.

Of course some people really are that shallow and I pity their partners, for many others I can't help thinking its more a case of the relationship not being as strong as you'd like to start off with and the weight is just an easy excuse.

Enoughalreadyyou Mon 28-Dec-15 12:47:20

Yes exactly. Do not depend on him for your view of yourself. Hear what your friends say and your good opinion of yourself. Don't let him grind you down.
I can always remember my friend saying how can you empower yourself? That's it really. Start today.

timelytess Mon 28-Dec-15 12:48:06

When you spend a long time with someone its possible, perhaps likely, that the edge will go off your sexual appetite for each other.

From reading on MN, though, it seems that when a man is open about that, he's usually found someone else.

My grandmother used to say 'A woman marries a man thinking she'll change him. A man marries a woman thinking she'll never change.' Disaster is inbuilt in the male-female marriage relationship, apparently!

OP, start making plans for a life without him, just in case.

Nightzone Mon 28-Dec-15 12:52:36

He says it's not the weight. Just doesn't fancy me. He can't seem to
Pinpoint why. He clearly does find other people attractive because he comments on women he sees on tv etc.

I asked him if he wanted to split up and he said no. He loves me and doesn't want to be without me but cannot "force himself" to fancy me. In his words "I wish I did and then we wouldn't be having this discussion!"

It's just so demoralising.

summerwinterton Mon 28-Dec-15 12:56:43

Whether he wants to split is irrelevant - do you want the rest of your life to be like this, or do you think you deserve better?

Your self esteem is being eroded constantly by him. I would say cherchez la femme too, and I would also wonder about porn or hook up sites. I am sorry to say such a thing, I know you never think this would happen to you.

Nightzone Mon 28-Dec-15 13:04:59

It complicated by the fact that my family all live 150 miles away and I moved here for him. If we do split I am going to have to stay here as my DD is in school here and loves it but I would be surrounded by him and his family.

I don't know if I can stay living like this. We have slept together no more than 10 times in 3 years. That's not good is it!

Northernnights Mon 28-Dec-15 13:22:21

Nightzone, think long and hard about what he is saying and how it impacts on you. Then think about what you want your future to be like.
To me he is saying:
I don't love you fully any more but I like you and wish you to provide all the benefits of marriage apart from sex. I am happy to maintain the status quo but will keep my options open should I meet someone else I would like to have sex with.
To me the impact is:
My marriage is over, my personal view as a sexual and sensual being has been compromised. My worth as a partner and spouse has been downgraded to companion and friend.
For my future:
I would want to end my marriage in as painlessly and amicably as possible. I need to start to change the household dynamic in order to begin a separate life. I would look at future employment/ earning potential/ housing in order to build an independent future.
I would immediately insist on separate bedrooms or ask him to move out whilst you consider what you want.

12purpleapples Mon 28-Dec-15 13:30:20

It sounds like its over. If so, the sooner you can get out the sooner you will find someone who appreciates you, you deserve better than to be his second best. Separate bedrooms is a good first step if you have room. It lets you set down a boundary and begin to get a feel for how the future could look.

Nightzone Mon 28-Dec-15 13:30:24

Thanks northernnights.

We are virtually in separate rooms already. He tends to end up there anyway!

I am financially independent so could manage on my own.

I think I will talk to him and say if he sees no way back then it may be best to split up!

You don't plan for this when getting married do you!

12purpleapples Mon 28-Dec-15 13:36:32

Discussing splitting up might make it more real for him, and make him think about the implications of it all.
You don't plan for this kind of thing when you get married, but thats not a good reason to spend more years in an unsatisfactory situation (IMO).

Joysmum Mon 28-Dec-15 13:42:30

The trouble is, he wants to use you as a wife for all the benefits except sex for his own selfish needs.

He's prepared to ignore your needs for a good marriage and sex and closeness because his needs makes yours invisible.

In order for your needs of emotional and physical closeness to be met actually requires some effort and thought on his part and he's not willing to do that despite it being important to you.

You, on the other hand, initially cared enough about your partnership with him to take the effort to discover his problem and want to work through it.

What does that say about him? Despite his protestations that he loves you and doesn't want to be without you, he's actually not willing to put in any effort to keep you happy as he's only interested in himself!

Enoughalreadyyou Mon 28-Dec-15 13:49:00

Seems to me that he wants his cake and eat it. It's highly likely he is getting sex elsewhere and that is the reason he no longer wants sex with you.
As he doesn't want to leave I would say it was hook up sites or porn.

Would you bother trying to find this out? Look up phone records and ATM withdrawals and bank records. You need to know what's happening to you.

Or just tell him to leave then he can feel the consequences of his actions.

You don't need this bullshit. Read the script and stop being naive as I was.

Northernnights Mon 28-Dec-15 13:50:45

Best of luck Nightzone.
I have often read on here that a man won't leave a failing relationship until he has his next one ready to move on to. Whilst a woman will leave an unhappy relationship to be on her own. Your 'D'P sounds as if he hasn't found his next relationship yet but is extricating himself from your marriage.
Distancing yourself from him may give him room to consider your relationship. If he decides that he does want a full marriage, what will you decide? I agree with 12purpleapples, if you stay together will you always be what he has settled for rather than the person he truly wants to be with?
He is a bit of a shit to treat you like this.

Isetan Mon 28-Dec-15 13:57:42

The fact the infrequent sex has been going on for so long and this is the first your hearing of his loss of attraction, makes me very suspicious (not necessarily an affair). It very much sounds like his supposed loss of attraction is an excuse, designed to permanently shut down the discussion about your sexual relationship.

All you can do is call his bluff and make it very clear that continuing as you are is no longer an option. He's either going to engage in the rehabilitation of your relationship or he won't but you won't tolerate his disengagement anymore.

I'm sorry this is happening.

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