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My husband touched me in my sleep...(170 Posts)
So I've been married 5 years together for 8 years, we have children together and for the most part things have been good. Recently I've woken up to him sexually touching me when I'm asleep, I've confronted him about it and he swears blind he has no idea he's doing it. Problem is I pretended to be asleep a few weeks back to see if he really was or not, I moved slightly like I was stirring and he stopped. Once I acted like I was asleep again he started touching me again...I feel violated & dirty but I feel like I'm blowing it out of proportion to? I feel guilt because I've not wanted to have sex with him in a long time and I feel like it's my fault. Anyone else been through this?
GET OUT OF THE RELATIONSHIP. This is NOT okay, it’s sexual assault. He is touching you without your consent and denying it. I’m so sorry to be so blunt but there is NO way to spin this where he’s not grossly in the wrong and horribly inappropriate/abusive. It is NOT your fault, even if you had not had sex with him for 50 years this would not be ok.
Do you have anyone you can go to stay with?
I've asked him to go and talk to someone about it like a doctor or councillor or something and he said he would but so far he hasn't. No I don't have anyone to stay with I have family but they love him and I don't want to admit what he's done as I don't ever want my children to find out. We get along well otherwise but it's made me really retreat back into myself I don't want to kiss and cuddle anymore but I don't want to just leave and blow my kids worlds apart. I threatened to leave after it happen if it ever happened again and strangely enough it's never happened since.
Have you told him that it's sexual assault? It seems like you're letting him off lightly. I understand that you might feel uncomfortable fully addressing the issue but please mske sure you highlight that it's his issue not yours. E.g rather than telking him it makes you uncomfortable, tell him bluntly that what he is doing is sexual assault as you did not permit him to do that whilst uour asleep.
He needs to take a long, hard look at himself and what he has done.
I've had this in my previous marriage which is now thankfully over. It's abuse. Funnily enough my exh only started his sleepy gropings when I went off him and we had no sex life.... It was absolutely a case of whilst I was in a state of sleepy unconsciousness I was fair game.
Get out now.
No I haven't said it like that to be honest, saying the word makes me feel sick. I think it's because I don't ever want to believe that's what it was when he's supposed to be my loving husband
OP I really really feel for you, such a difficult situation, but this is sexual assault and I know no one wants to hear that. Such an awful thing to accept and from your husband too. I’m so sorry.
Please call and speak to women’s aid if you can.
Now you know he’s done this will your relationship ever be ok? I firmly believe children are better off with separated parents who are happy and can model healthy relationships with others (or just be single) than in an unhappy/tense/abusive relationship together. I know you have kids but it’s your life and honestly if he’s the type of person who can do this and take no responsibility then what else is he capable of?
He cried when I confronted him about it and said how it made me feel but I feel totally detached and depressed now. To the point I don't even want to raise the subject again but I hate him for putting me in this situation
Practically speaking, while you decide what to do, if you can sleep in another room, I would. Otherwise a good old-fashioned bolster.
And tell him to stop, in no uncertain terms, as this is non-consensual and there are words for what that behaviour is.
Overall, consider getting the hell out of a relationship where this happens.
I feel guilt because I've not wanted to have sex with him in a long time and I feel like it's my fault
It's not your fault. Most people manage to not sexually assault people, whether they've had sex recently or not.
Yes, I've been in a relationship with someone who sexually assaulted and raped me in my sleep, and I've been pressured to have sex by many men. It's disgusting. Never again.
Thankyou all for your advice, it's very much appreciated. I don't really have anyone I can turn to for support as I said I don't want to tell my family. I told my mum I wanted to leave him and she told me to try and make it work but obviously she doesn't know why. He's always going to be part of our lives as we have children together and I don't want it to influence their behaviour towards him.
Please know this is not your fault at all. There is genuinely nothing you could possibly have done to make this acceptable. Even if you’d said to him “let’s have sex”, started it, then fallen asleep. You cannot consent while you’re asleep, you’re literally unconscious.
He knows this and that’s why he’s doing it while you’re asleep, because he thinks you won’t want to while you’re awake. He’s doing something he thinks you wouldn’t consent to if you were conscious. And turning on the water works is so cheap - it’s a way to make himself the victim and make you feel guilty for upsetting him. Please do not ever blame yourself.
This man has blown his kids world apart by abusing you repeatedly as their mother. None of that is of your doing.
Crying can be manipulative behaviour and in your case I would assume he did this merely to tug at your heartstrings and otherwise make you feel sorry for him. This was manipulation 101 from him. He was not remorseful at all; he feels entitled to act like this and this is also repeated behaviour. He will do this to you again, this is him wanting absolute power and control over you sexually. Power and control lie at the heart of abuse.
What do you want to teach your children about relationships and what are they learning here?. Better to be on your own with your kids than to be so badly accompanied. Do not stay in such a marriage because of them either because they won't say "thanks mum" to you for doing that to them. Children also are not stupid and do pick up on all the vibes both spoken and unspoken here.
Would you want your daughter to be in a marriage like this; no you would not. Its not acceptable to you either. You bloody well matter so stop putting your own self last here again.
OP, I agree with FTM, before you do anything else, you need to explain to your DH why this is so totally unacceptable. Make it crystal clear that consent cannot be given when asleep, that his actions are sexual assault, and that he has completely breached your trust in him.
Tell him that if it happens again, you will move into the spare room and lock the door every night. Ask him why he thinks it is ok to make you feel unsafe in your own home.
If he tries to diminish his actions in any way, start planning your departure.
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Tell him that if it happens again, you will move into the spare room and lock the door every night
Just what would he be losing if the OP did this? What is the point of them sharing a bed if they aren't having sex?
This is all on him, you are not responsible for his shameful actions. Your shame is completely misplaced and lies solely with him, this is not your fault in any way.
If you keep his abuse of you a secret it will continue to eat away at you and otherwise destroy you from the inside out. Do not let him do that to you and in turn your children. You are also showing him by staying that there are no consequences for his actions; he could easily escalate an attack against you further.
Your mother's counsel is next to useless here and utterly unhelpful; what did she teach you about relationships when you were growing up?. There is no getting past what he has done to you here at all, this is sexual assault.
Do not give him any more power and control than he already has over you and in turn your kids. They are not the arbiters of your relationship re your H here.
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You say you don't want to have sex with him yet it's him who you've suggested see's a counsellor. It should be you who's going.
Clootie- WTF it's not OP that's sexually assaulted someone. Not that I think therapy is a way for a sex offender to get away with their actions, anyway.
You seem to want your cake and eat it. A celibate relationship because you don't want to have sex with him and for him to not want anything either.
Ugh. Sex is not compulsory and someone isn't entitled to it from someone who doesn't want it. He can want whatever but he doesn't have to sexually assault or pressurize someone.
It's ok guys, I knew people would have different view points on my situation...trust me it's not like I haven't gone over all these different scenarios in my head before now. I suggested he speak to someone as I have read about a condition called "sexsomnia" and I wanted to try to make sure I'd covered everything I could do to fix the relationship. At least that way if and when I do throw the towel in I've exhausted all my options and it may be easier to deal with.
OP, if you don’t want to have sex with this man, you should divorce him and set him free to find a partner who does want to have sex with him. Marriage is a sexual relationship, not a celibate house share.
I agree he is not entitled to touch you without consent - that is sexual assault - but he did not sign up for life as a celibate monk, and if you don’t want him, don’t expect him to put up with this indefinitely. Let him go.
The only acceptable level of abuse in a relationship is NONE.
Staying for the kids rarely if ever works out well and in your case its a particularly bad idea.
Re he seeing a counselor he has paid lip service to the OP re that and has done nothing. From that I would think has no intention at all of actually seeing any such person. He really does feel he has done nothing wrong and I sadly would expect a further escalation of sexual violence against you.
You're wrong in thinking that you have no support; there is support out there for you (writing here is a good place to start) and there are organisations who can help you. Family and friends can be over invested and as you have seen your mother is really of not much use here. If you were to tell her the whole truth though what do you think her reaction would be?. Keeping his abuse of you a secret is not an action I would at all advise for you to do because it does not help you.
There are about 7 billion people on this planet OP and to date there have been only 94 cases of sleep sex documented worldwide. Don't go down that particular rabbit hole, besides which this man does not want to speak to anybody. Also the second time he did this to you, you were pretending to be asleep. He knows exactly what he is doing here both then and now. He is still playing you like a violin here.
Why is it your job here to try and fix the unfixable, who installed that belief in you?. Please also read the publication entitled "Women who love too much" written by Dr Robin Norwood.
I suggested he speak to someone as I have read about a condition called "sexsomnia" and I wanted to try to make sure I'd covered everything I could do to fix the relationship.
But you proved it wasn't sexsomnia yourself, because you pretended to be asleep, he did it, then when you stirred he stopped so he wouldn't be caught out. So you know he knows what he's doing.
I also think therapy wouldn't help the extremely rare genuine cases of sexsomnia, rather than of men lying to excuse sexual assault, (your husband is in the second category anyway) because those few people are asleep while they're doing it.
Re he seeing a counselor he has paid lip service to the OP re that and has done nothing. From that I would think has no intention at all of actually seeing any such person.
Atila- He probably would go to counselling (he can say whatever in session after all, or even not actually go maybe) if it meant he gets away with what his done and his marriage continues.
@missbecks90 I don't think telling your mum etc. would mean the kids'd be likely to find out.
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