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I'm not sure I can live in a sexless marriage

(32 Posts)
FaintlyBaffled Sun 26-Feb-17 08:23:44

DH has struggled for some time. After some persuasion he saw his GP and was prescribed Viagra which has helped somewhat, but the lack of spontaneity can be an issue (it takes a couple hours to work for him)
We've always been mismatched in terms of sex drive, but in the past have usually managed to compromise well enough. For context, there's no way I could be described as a sexual predator or anything like that, just that my drive is slightly higher than DH's.
Recently things have become worse and DH literally cannot have sex, even with a little <ahem> help IYSWIM? blush
I know it's not his fault but I feel so rejected by it all. I'm aware that nagging or sulking will make the issue worse, but it's so hard not to be upset by it that I struggle to remain impassive.
A similar thread I read a while ago advised that OP to leave her DH as her happiness was so important. I can't even contemplate the upset that would cause both of us, quite aside from the fact that a DH doing just that would be seen as morally abhorrent.
I'm just not sure how I'm supposed to live the rest of my life like this sad

LexieLulu Sun 26-Feb-17 08:25:01

Can I ask how old you and your husband are?

FaintlyBaffled Sun 26-Feb-17 08:33:51

Oh yes, I seem to have missed out that vital nugget in my OP hmm
I'm 42 and DH is 64 yes, I know, I know I'm well aware that these "things" happen with age and it shouldn't come as such a huge shock to me. I just rather hoped that it would be a little later on if I'm honest sad

loinnir Sun 26-Feb-17 12:15:58

If your DH has an open mind there are all sorts of other types of erotic stimulation/arousal that are possible. Rather than focusing on his "appendage" you could try exercises such as stroking - noting what feels good. Mutual massage and he could stimulate you digitally. There are books and sites out there about these techniques or you could see a Therapist with sex specialism who could devise a plan for you both.

However, you would both need to be open to trying these things and the crux can often be that one partner isn't.

noego Sun 26-Feb-17 13:02:40

Have you tried Tantric meditative sex?

The fact of the matter is that a 64 year old man cannot maintain an erection permanently. This can affect him psychologically when coming to DTD. As there may be a nagging doubt he cannot perform and so ends up not performing iyswim.
So as a prelude to erectile states and non erectile states. Tantric sex can help discover those moments and those area's that stimulate your partner. When erect take advantage when not erect explore erogenous zones.

if you have a good strong relationship can laugh, joke, cuddle, kiss and hug in the normal course of the day then this would beneficial.

Start by cooking together, eating together, bathing together, prepare the room with candle, scents, music, take your time, make an evening of it. explore each other intimately.

You get the idea smile

FaintlyBaffled Mon 27-Feb-17 13:18:07

Thank you flowers
It's hard not to feel so totally rejected, though logically I know it's not his fault.

noego Mon 27-Feb-17 13:39:36

Sent you a post OP

Aquamarine1029 Mon 27-Feb-17 21:48:51

What kind of physical condition is your husband in? Is he out of shape and overweight? If he is, that combined with his age is a huge problem.

FaintlyBaffled Tue 28-Feb-17 04:23:13

He's always been fit due to his work aqua but has recently had a change of role that means he's not doing so much of the heavy stuff. This has had an effect on his overall fitness, though he's still thin as a whippet.

highinthesky Tue 28-Feb-17 05:18:14

Faintly, this is the reality of loving an older man and no reflection on his love for or interest in you.

This is just one (early) sign of physical decline, and in your position I'd be alert to this. The reality is that you will become more and more of a carer over the years - not immediately, but it will happen eventually. Think about how it is you're going to manage your future lives together.

AntiqueSinger Tue 28-Feb-17 06:03:38

a DH doing just that would be seen as morally abhorrent.

Only to some people not to everyone. Not to many who live in situations like yours for years, even decades and understand its impact on the perception of self, on sexual confidence, on mental and emotional health, on body confidence, on the sense of one's desirability. Sorry but you cannot overlook the impact of these things in the longer-term. You are only 42 years young, with potentially 20+ years of unmet sexual urges ahead of you. As a previous poster said, as your husband gets older, he will continue to decline in that department however much he loves you. I do know many men who still perform well at that age and some are still fathering children, but it seems not your dh.

So if you choose to stay you have to accept that a convential, sexual relationship will be out of the question, although it may be more than compensated for by affection and genuine love. The question you have to decide is will this be enough for you?

On the practical side, does your dh excercise? A lot of men stop working out when older. Moderate weight training, and physical excercise like pushups etc help boost natural testosterone levels which decline drastically as some men age. You could also have his levels looked at ny an alternative health practicioner or a doctor who specialises in mens health. A personal trainer could devise an excercise program tailored to his needs as he is older. The GP could refer him for some help with improving overall fitness. Sufficient levels of iron vit D and selenium encourage sperm motility etc. The winter weather doesn't help. Vit d compensates. Apparently Korean (or it could be siberian) Gingseng taken as a supplement and a tea aids because it boosts circulation. Get a really good quality brand from a proper herbal section of a health food shop (not h+b). One thing alone may not help, but a combination of many, including previous suggestions may get you somewhere. Viagra is ok, but I think you also ought to factor in the overall health. Just as women go through menopause, so do men and being sedentary only makes it worse. Of course im assuming a lot here, but best of luck.

AntiqueSinger Tue 28-Feb-17 06:08:30

Also I suggest checking thyroid hormone levels. He could be under. That would definately not help. GP may have done this already. If not, worth checking out and eliminating. If levels are borderline or under get it treated.

loinnir Tue 28-Feb-17 11:51:48

If he never gets a spontaneous erection or stirrings anymore - early morning rise etc then the cause could be physical and can be an indicator of some conditions that do need treatment. If it is only when he tries to have sex then it more likely to be psychological in nature.

Would he go see the GP again? Is your DH still affectionate? A friend of mine is in this situation . Her husband is just shrugging his shoulders about it and has been for about 4 years now. If it was the other way round she would have sought help and so she feels really hacked off that he won't even try or come to some compromise. He is really sticking his head in the sand but she may leave even though she does not want to do OLD etc

LanaorAna1 Tue 28-Feb-17 18:50:21

A lot of doom and gloom about men and ageing on this thread - as it happens, over half of men never get long-term erectile problems.

The Viagra brigade are a minority, as are impotent men. Ageing affects most men a bit, but they still function unless there's a proper health problem that causes ED.

OP, I feel for you. Try the other stuff you can do as a couple before giving up, however.

welshmist Tue 28-Feb-17 19:14:52

Faintly Baffled, near tears here.

DH had prostate problems, his pee slowed down to a trickle, it affected the bedroom performance, so viagra and other things were tried, sort of worked. Then he was booked in for a turps operation. It went well, however, it seems they removed too much prostate in one go, at home he basically started bleeding internally so rushed back to hospital. The upshot is that ten years ago our sex life stopped dead.

I have cried, raged and every other emotion you can think of. I asked him once if he would try other things that would please me. He would not. If I accidentally touch him he jumps and looks panicky. We do not have any physical contact at all. I asked him to try viagra or Cialis again, he refused because they give him a headache. Our last argument was probably a year ago, he said he was too old for that sort of nonsense. He is now 66 so was 56 when we last made love.

It is hard being the younger wife, when we married the age difference seemed immaterial, now it shows, not just in sex but his grumpiness and plain Victor Meldrew behaviour, that coupled with his forgetfulness is hard work at times.

I have worked through my feelings of rejection mostly, which as you said are irrational, my husband is not doing this deliberately.

What I do feel is that what is missing is the fact he does not feel he has to be nice to me because he wants nothing from me. I think he would be kinder and better behaved if he thought his unpleasantness meant nookie was off the menu.

PollyPerky Tue 28-Feb-17 19:40:03

OP I suggest your GP goes back to his GP. Men in their 80s are still having sex quite often according to media reports recently. My DH is almost the same age as yours and has no issues whatsoever- quite the opposite- so it's not really an age thing per se.

It may be your DH's health is poor overall - is he exercising to get the circulation flowing?

Why don't you ask your GP for a referral as a couple to a sexual therapist? I think the issue sounds as much psychological as physical. 64 is not old.

whirlygirly Tue 28-Feb-17 20:23:29

Oh welshmist, that sounds utterly miserable. sad

SewMeARiver Tue 28-Feb-17 21:35:35

Thats tough welshmist my heart goes out to you. I give you 10/10 for continuing to

welshmist Tue 28-Feb-17 22:21:35

Thank you but it is the OP who has the worst of it she is so young 42 I am more sanguine about it now, I did get a beautiful baby at 44, (thanks Viagra) so am kept pretty busy.

Faintly Baffled, do as much as you can to encourage him to seek help I know how rejecting it feels. I felt a huge knock to my femininity.

DH just walked in asking me to look at his knuckle, it does look swollen so I said probably a touch of arthritis, which is pretty normal for his age, oops he went off muttering that he did not need arthritis.

He is very touchy that his hair is now seriously thinning, honestly they think women are vain, men are much more annoyed about the signs of ageing in my experience.

YetAnotherGuy Tue 28-Feb-17 22:59:07

On the over-riding issue of whether you should leave your husband, It seems a pretty drastic step to take

On some of the more detailed aspects:

I am in my late 60s and have started taking Viagra in the last month or so (online prescription) after gradually worsening performance. It works pretty well and I am taking the lowest (25mg) dose. The pills also come in 50mg and 100mg versions. And there are other drugs like Cialis to try too. I would explore this first

I think the lack of spontaneity is not significant. This happens in many situations. When you first meet up, or when you have children etc

And if it is a physical issue, I wouldn't feel rejected. Certainly there are other ways of enjoyment of sexual activity to explore. If he's not interested in this though, that is a pretty strong negative to me

The main question here is the strength of yourrelationship. But only you know that

loinnir Wed 01-Mar-17 18:04:22

welshmist - you are right IME men are more vain! (than me anyway). It sounds like you are in a very difficult position. I am not surprised you feel rebuffed by his lack of affection and not wanting to do some things that could give you pleasure. Especially, if it was the other way round you would try to tend to his needs. I think it is the lack of wanting to even try to meet the other persons needs in some small way ( a hug, a touch, massage etc) that is so dispiriting.

I don't think your feelings of rejection are irrational. True. it is not your husband's fault he got a prostrate problem but he could show he respected you, held you in high esteem, still adored you etc through myriad other gestures and behaviours other than sex.

welshmist Wed 01-Mar-17 19:24:39

I did ask him if I took a lover just for the physical side of things would he divorce me. He said yes. I wondered if the boot was on the other foot would I tolerate him finding physical release elsewhere because I was physically unable to be a wife to him I thought yes it would be selfish not to. Men are much more territorial perhaps.

SandyY2K Wed 01-Mar-17 20:11:20


What a horrible situation you're in. I think your DHs refusal for any physical contact is really awful.

I don't know how you manage without feeling rejected and totally dejected. Penetrative sex is not the only way to have intimacy, but it's the lack of willingness to even try other methods (toys /oral), is bad.

welshmist Wed 01-Mar-17 20:18:01

Ah tis not so bad now, have been through the worst. The OP however, is much younger which is what upsets me. I have walked in her shoes, it does not have to be as it is for me.

GatoradeMeBitch Wed 01-Mar-17 21:27:18

I mean... penetrative sex is not the be-all and end-all. I know it's not the same, but I'm reminded of the TV scenes where a man loses his erection and so all sexual pleasure must stop immediately even though the woman is totally capable of having an orgasm without a penis being involved.

Is he open to using toys, or giving you more sexual attention in other ways? Or is it literally erection or nothing?

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