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Feel like i'm in a Black Hole

(49 Posts)
Sterling314159 Thu 16-Jul-20 13:30:46

So I anticipate getting shredded but here goes...

Mid 30s, for those looking in on it my relationship with my DW is perfect. House, jobs etc. But inside .. its been sexless and unromantic for a long time now. Never had kids. A few years ago I started realizing there was an issue but buried my head in the sand. But as you can imagine.. the inevitable happened and I struck up a friendship with someone through work. Never got physical but did push the boundary. Made me realise what was wrong with my current relationship.. In 2019 I told my DW that things needed to change. I dropped into depression and I'm trying to get myself out of a dark hole not helped by lockdown... DW just tells me to get on with it as we all are going through it. Over the past 6 months I tried to talk to her on numerous occasions ... but I've realized that she is probably happy continuing in a sexless marriage forever. She talks about guys at work most days, and I did once see that someone had left a flirty message on some work papers but it had no name and it was most likely a joke.

With the OW - We agreed relationship was unhealthy and went NC, but I still work with her. I'm not changing jobs. I just cant get her out of my head. I fully understand that its a fantasy - she is the opposite in many aspects. DW - career driven, no intention of a family, wears the trousers in the relationship.. not that interested in developing a very deep relationship. Work and friends first. OW probably more needy, all about family no real desire for a career and happy doing something she is passionate about.

I found a few MN threads really helpful - I understand that I need to focus purely on the current relationship and try and fix it. I'm setting up counselling - DW agreed to go but has taken no interest in it at all. But I feel like I've thrown in the towel already...I spent a week away and during the time I realised that neither of us spoke about how we were feeling etc was just all practical messages.

Do I just try and get to counselling and hope that a mediator will be able to untangle this?

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MizMoonshine Thu 16-Jul-20 13:42:05

You've said about the state of your relationship. You haven't said about your feelings about your wife.
Do you love her? Are you in love with her?
What are your motivations for wanting to make this relationship work?
There's no shame in walking away from something that isn't working for you.

You're right about the OW, it's just that she's the opposite to what you're getting at home. She isn't the solution to your problems.

Figure out what you need. Decide what you want to do. Don't stay in a sexless or loveless marriage. Your wife isn't making you a priority, so you need to.

Sterling314159 Thu 16-Jul-20 14:10:10

I love her - in the sense that I care for her but sometimes it feels sibling-esque. In recent years I do feel maybe I have fallen out of deep romantic passionate love. I struggle to work out how much of that is because my head had been turned. Its not normal for 30s couples to have sex once ever 12 to 18 months but she doesn't see it as an issue... or maybe more importantly wont admit to me that its an issue.

My motivations to making it work - I think that it would devastate her to split, I dont want to hurt her. Social, financial implications etc. Although financial isint really an issue. I feel guilt as well that I went outside of the relationship for friendship

Can anyone advise on relationship counselling - would they every say that the cracks are too wide to heal, or is it more trying to get us to come to a conclusion ourselves.

OP’s posts: |
MizMoonshine Thu 16-Jul-20 14:22:23

Relationship counselling is great, when both parties want to make it work. However, it's not a magic wand. It won't suddenly repair years of damage. Both partners have to want to make it work.

Your motivations don't reflect what you actually want.

You need to address this with your partner. Is she aware of your emotional affair? If you want to move forward, you need to be honest.

I would also recommend that you separate. It seems, from what you have said, that she is comfortable with the life you have. She is happy to rub along without making any changes because it's not hurting her the same way it is you. She needs to see what she stands to lose.
You would also benefit from seeing what life without your wife is like. Physical distance to match the emotional and sexual distance between you. Evaluate what is important to you.

namechange12a Thu 16-Jul-20 14:29:49

OP you don't have children and it sounds as though your relationship is dead in the water. You're also projecting onto your wife and looking for signs she might be cheating on you which is wrong.

Just end the relationship, I don't see what the drama is about. I wouldn't want to live in a sexless relationship with someone who I no longer love or find attractive.

Get some legal advice pending divorce then bang for Britain if that's what you want to do.

Ori38 Thu 16-Jul-20 14:41:35

Sounds like you’re amicable co-tenants. You’re so young, do you envision being in this marriage for the rest of your life? It sounds like both of you are tiptoeing around the elephant in the need to be brave, sit down with her and say ‘let’s talk.” Explain all that you’ve written here.

See what her response is. You both deserve to be happy & for all you know she might be relieved you’ve brought it up. I’m not surprised you’re finding yourself attracted to other people to be honest. You’re in a sexless marriage, you’re only human & who knows, perhaps your DW is feeling the same. Either way, you do need to talk about it with her, honestly and openly.

LessCumbersome Thu 16-Jul-20 15:02:06

I think this sounds sad. It sounds like you have no great stressors in your life, no health issues? You're financially solvent and have a nice home etc.... The lack of sex is a big deal. It would be a big deal for me to only have sex every 12-18 months. My husband had a small injury last month which meant we didn't have sex for 3 weeks and I felt a little bit of distance between us. You have to tell her that this is important to you, give the counselling a chance as well. Nothing is going to change on one session.

I would leave a relationship where my partner decided to end my sex life without even talking to me about it.

Sterling314159 Thu 16-Jul-20 15:09:59

I don't think I could tell her about the OW... TBH, there are times when I get very low and think that the shame in admitting what a low life I've been isn't worth living for. TBH its not just the OW - sometimes I will speak to a counselor or relate etc just to have someone to speak to. I read all these posts and just think wow, i'm that guy who ruined the wife's life by walking out and had his head turned.. pretty much every MN post following that calls the guy some pretty low-life adjectives.

I've been trying to talk to her about it - I got as far as telling her why I don't initiate sex (I dont enjoy it, i dont think we are sexually compatible etc).. to which she said Ive permanently ruined 'us'

I agree about projecting. Its irrelevant what she is doing outside of the relationship

OP’s posts: |
backseatcookers Thu 16-Jul-20 15:15:37

You say you worry it will devastate her but do you really think that staying in this relationship long term will make either of you healthy and happy mentally?

Of course it won't. Be brave, be sensible and end the relationship.

You're in your mid thirties, you both have ages to meet someone else you are happy with and compatible with.

Google sunk cost fallacy.

BombyliusMajor Thu 16-Jul-20 15:16:26

If you don’t enjoy sex with her and don’t think you are sexually compatible and you are not in love with her, what do you think counselling will change in this marriage? You are allowed to end the relationship. No need to be a martyr.

namechange12a Thu 16-Jul-20 15:17:11

How are you going to ruin her life OP? She's surely better off single than with you. At least then she can move on and find someone who finds her sexually attractive and doesn't want to bang Betty from Accounts.

There aren't children to consider and she's financially solvent. She'd be a lot happier than with someone with so little respect for her.

The couples counselling is a farce as you've got one foot out of the relationship.

Do the right thing, leave the relationship and then you're free to navel gaze as much as you want. I'm sure she'll be fine.

MizMoonshine Thu 16-Jul-20 15:19:42

The fact that you're not able to tell her about the OW screams that it's not worth counselling. If you can't be honest, you've got nothing.
She wouldn't be moving forward able to make informed decisions.

LessCumbersome Thu 16-Jul-20 15:27:32

Wait a minute.... So you told her you don't enjoy having sex with her and aren't compatible? And you're wondering why she doesn't want to have sex? This is different to how your OP sounds.

hellsbellsmelons Thu 16-Jul-20 15:31:36

I understand that I need to focus purely on the current relationship and try and fix it
You aren't happy.
Not even a little bit.
You get literally nothing out of this relationship now.
So why are you continuing to flog this dead-horse.
I really think you would BOTH be better to separate.
You have no kids and she doesn't want them.
Do YOU want kids?
You are way too young to be living this half life.
Sex is very important in a relationship.
12-18 months is not OK in your 30's
You want different things.
I really think you need to end this and get out there and enjoy life.
You don't appear to even have fun together.
What is the point?
Really think about that!

Sterling314159 Thu 16-Jul-20 15:40:26

@LessCumbersome Recently I tried to engage in a conversation to understand why our relationship was sexless. I just explained that over the past few years I didnt enjoy it and wasnt that motivated to initiate. Yea maybe deep down its because I dont "fancy" her ... Im trying to be honest

OP’s posts: |
larrygrylls Thu 16-Jul-20 15:46:18


You have no children and you don’t sound that fond of each other-so end it! You will both be infinitely happier within a few months.

You have not come up with a good reason not to end it; neither guilt or pity for your wife are good reasons.

What would you say to a friend in your position?

Dery Thu 16-Jul-20 15:49:06


What did you expect to gain by telling her you didn't enjoy sex with her and you don't think you're sexually compatible!?!? My DH and I have always been somewhat mismatched in terms of sex drive but he's never suggested he doesn't enjoy sex with me. No wonder she doesn't want to have sex with you.

That said, although I think that was a pretty awful thing to say, it doesn't mean that all the fault for the breakdown in the relationship lies with you by any means. You don't mention how long you've been together but it does sound like your relationship has simply run its course. Indeed, it doesn't have to be anyone's fault. No-one's perfect and everyone pisses off their partners from time to time. You don't have DC together so disentangling yourselves from each other would be simpler than it might otherwise be.

You say she will be devastated but no-one is owed a relationship and she will get over you if you do part. Indeed, it might even be a relief to her. You're in your mid-30s - you could live another 5-6 decades. Surely you and she aren't contemplating continuing in this way for the next 40/50/60 years?

You mention children a couple of times. It sounds from your posts as if you would like to have children. It doesn't sound like your present relationship is well suited to that and that might be another reason to make the move sooner rather than later.

Do just bear in mind that having children is the biggest commitment a person can make to a partner and to the children themselves so, if you do want children, choose that person with care and also be a reliable and committed person yourself. Don't be a Disney dad - i.e. a father who just wants the fun parts of parenting and isn't willing to change nappies, get up for the baby at 3 a.m. and so forth.

LessCumbersome Thu 16-Jul-20 15:51:12

I know but.... It's just initially you were coming across that the marriage being sexless was a decision that was made by your wife. And that is not the case.

You are in a situation where you are in a marriage that you don't fancy your wife and you want to look elsewhere at people you do fancy, to the point of having an emotional affair . You are that bastard that everyone talks about. The only way to not be any more of a bastard is either to work on the marriage, and be 100% committed to it, or to make a clean break with no other murky emotional affairs.

If you take the cowards route that you have been taking up to this point you will hurt your wife much more in the long run.

In the meantime you are doing a real number on your wife's confidence. It must be pretty shattered by now. Oh I could cringe to think of my husband saying he wasn't motivated to initiate sex because he didn't enjoy it. I would do what you can to undo this. You can't unring this bell though but don't say anything like it again.

namechange12a Thu 16-Jul-20 15:51:14

You sound really cruel. Where can your partner go from there? You don't enjoy having sex with her and don't initiate sex because you don't enjoy sex. That's a shitty thing to say to anyone, never mind someone you're meant to love. You're also fantasising about someone else but are making out it's her fault. She must be very hurt.

You sound like a complete shit OP. And suggesting couple's counselling when you're thinking about someone else and haven't told her so she probably thinks it's her fault? Do her a favour and end the relationship.

You can start revising the script as well.

I love you but I'm not in love with you.
No, of course there isn't anyone else.

Two months later and Betty from Accounts starts appearing on social media.

Oh, that started after we split up.

Integrity is just a word in the dictionary. You won't ruin her life by leaving OP, please believe me.

Sterling314159 Thu 16-Jul-20 16:14:17

I guess I knew this was coming. I wasn't as blunt as simply saying I didn't enjoy it fullstop. I explained that I felt other issues in the relationship were being played out in the bedroom and that I didn't feel comfortable. And that it was a bit of a circle of doom because I wanted to try and conceive.. but the infrequency meant there was a lot of pressure.

The decision to live in a sexless marriage has been a joint one... neither of us have tried. For whatever reason I have not addressed the issues and thats something I now regret.

Right fine. I'm a b@strd. I know I am a b@strd, so you don't need to tell me anymore. I realise my mistakes and I want to try and move on

I've never suggested its her fault. This is 100% me

OP’s posts: |
overlooker Thu 16-Jul-20 16:15:02

Look. You’re in your 30s. You don’t have kids. You’ve developed an interest in somebody else. There aren’t any outside pressures like bereavement or shouldn’t be this hard. Lots of us are ploughing on because we have years invested and kids. That’s when you tr and salvage. If I was in your shoes? I’d throw the towel in. Sell up. Get a fresh start. Find yourself. Are you happy at work? Go out and find somebody who makes your heart sing. You’ve got time. You’ve got another 15 years plus to be able to have kids. Don’t settle. She doesn’t want the same things as you.

overlooker Thu 16-Jul-20 16:16:20

You’re getting wrapped up in the guilt. What’s done is done. Time to tell her you got interested in somebody else and it’s a sign that things aren’t right. Be brave. This time next year you could be sat with somebody who loves being with you

rvby Thu 16-Jul-20 16:18:53

I understand that I need to focus purely on the current relationship and try and fix it ???? Who told you that was what you "should" do?

And your motivation for choosing this approach is... she will be hurt if you end it and there will be social implications?

I mean this gently, please don't come on here saying that MN threads have taught you that you need to stick with her, get counselling etc. No. MN didn't teach you that - you want to do that because you don't want to be the bad guy.

Calling yourself a "low life" etc... please don't be a drama queen. You'll only create more problems for yourself.

What's happened here is really simple
You and your DW aren't passionate about each other anymore. Apparently you don't much like shagging her anymore. It happens.
You ignored this for a while
You had a friendship at work that pushed the boundary a bit and forced you to stop ignoring the issues in the marriage
You've tried to regroup
You find you just don't have the wherewithal.

So just end it then?
What are you imagining will happen in counselling? You don't want to be fully honest anyway - which is 100% your choice. So just end it. Go to individual counselling, that would likely help much more than couples counselling.

I suspect your actual problem in life is that you don't want to be blamed for things and therefore have neglecting growing a spine, which is keeping you in a shit, boring marriage.

rvby Thu 16-Jul-20 16:22:31

Right fine. I'm a b@strd. I know I am a b@strd, so you don't need to tell me anymore. I realise my mistakes and I want to try and move on

... please don't be a child. Gosh, you couldn't have illustrated my post better than with this little paragraph!

You're just a human. We all are. No need to be dramatic and fling yourself around the place hoping someone will stroke your head and tell you you're a good boy really.

Go to counselling yourself, learn not to be petulant and instead when you have the impulse to be, ask yourself what you really want, and how you can make it happen. The behaviour you're showing in this thread screams "I want someone else to make decisions for me because otherwise I might have to take accountability" that isn't going to work, it's just going to land you with one domineering partner after another, the sex will dry up every time, etc. etc.

Sterling314159 Thu 16-Jul-20 16:31:47

Fair enough everyone - I take onboard what has been said.

OP’s posts: |

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