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No sex!

(22 Posts)
stressmumble Wed 14-Jan-09 21:46:20

Hi new to mumsnet - and really would like to gauge some opinions from all you lovely ladies out there!
Have been married for 6 years and have a 4 year old and a 2 year old and my husband has been off sex since the birth of my DD 5 years ago, and have not had sex at all since the birth of my son 2 years ago. He does not come near me, and my self esteem is at an all time low and don't even bother to try to initiate affection any more as don't have the confidence anymore. I don't feel much like an attractive woman anymore, and before all this I was v confident in that department, and always had lots of male attention - and really want it from my husband and wonder whether there is any hope for the relationship.....Any one have any advise????sad

dietstartstomorrow Wed 14-Jan-09 21:48:14

Have you talked to your DH about it?

ahappymummy Wed 14-Jan-09 21:50:27

do you not feel attractive because of him not showing an interest or have you changed physically?

stressmumble Wed 14-Jan-09 22:05:57

yes, have brought it up loads of times over the past few years and every time he is v apologetic and swears he does still fin dme attractive and that things will change and they never do. So it is not for want of trying. I have changed a bit physically as I had a 9 and a half and 10 and a half pound babies (I was only 8 and half stone when I first got pregnant) so i do have a bit of a tummy and the dreaded stretch marks soreally needed him to pick up the baton as it were and make me feel ok about myself - but as the opposite has happened just feel at a dead end - have even suggested councilling but he says he does not want to go there.

MichaelaS Thu 15-Jan-09 01:57:47

I think counselling is a great idea, what a shame he's not interested in trying that. Relate have marriage counsellors who specialise in sex, and it is reassuring to know that they have heard it all before and are not going to be shocked or embarassed.

Have you spoken to your husband about how you feel about this? maybe he doesn't realise how important this is to you? perhaps he would be more willing to try counselling if he realised it was so important to your happiness - ultimatley if he's not going to address the problem he's potentially risking his marriage.

N1 Thu 15-Jan-09 04:14:35

The longer you leave a problem, the worse it gets or the worse it feels.

The more you think about a problem, the bigger it feels.

and .....talking about a problem without action gets you no where.

You need a plan.

I doubt the stretch marks bother your husband. I personally like stretch marks because I can trace my finger on them. I don't know of men who don't like them. The worsted I heard a bloke say was that a particular woman had many, but there was no suggestion of the marks being ugly.

I somehow don't think your problems are limited to lack of sex. Lack of sex is more often than not a reaction and the lack of sex causes other things to react (go down or feel worse) eg. Low self worth.

5 years isn't a long time, so I would feel optimistic if I were you - hard to do if you are feeling down.

6 years ago, you were doing things that you are not doing now. Can you name 6 things that you did weekly or monthly that you don't do now. Don't mention sex, we know that already.

Do you and your husband sit on the same chair and watch TV?

Who opens the mail in the house (bills etc).

Do you chew your finger nails? If not, are your nails clipped short or is there a bit of length on your nail?

I can't promise to solve anything, but I can try to offer an odd idea or so.

StayingZen Thu 15-Jan-09 10:01:28

@ N1: why do you ask about the fingernails?

wingandprayer Thu 15-Jan-09 10:06:28

Has he changed at all over this time though? Men can be just as sensitive about weight gain and losing their looks as women can. Is he, erm, looking after his own needs or is there no sexual interest at all?

AttilaTheMeerkat Thu 15-Jan-09 10:34:59

He should be honest with you and give you reasons. He is not being fair on yourself, or for that matter him. Does he think that he can solve the problem without any outside intervention?. A triumph of hope over experience if that is the case.

Was he present at both births - some men do get very squeamish at their wife pushing their baby out of the vagina and it can turn them off sex.

He should also see the GP to check if there are any medical problems affecting his sex drive - a lack of testosterone can cause problems with sex drive.

If he won't go to counselling and he needs to reconsider that decision, go on your own.

N1 Thu 15-Jan-09 12:37:42

StayingZen. A person's finger nails can tell you a fair bit about that person's current situation. Not limited to health. It can show a nervous person, a bad habit (if there is one, there might be more).

Sometimes finger nails have to be short or long, depending on work expectations.

I took a few random stabs at questions to (hopefully) get an answer that can be explored.

stressmumble Thu 15-Jan-09 13:23:22

Thanks for all your comments/suggestions... in answer to some of your questions is that we did used to go out more together before children, and we do have the opportunity to go out more now as we have family living nearby who are always haappy to babysit, but I don't really feel the desire to go out with him as I guess have kind of fallen out of love to a certain extent - as he does not really offer me any companionship. He only had a high sex drive when we first started dating (he had a high number of sexual partners before me and was a bit of a one for one night stands) but as realtionship went on the sex diminished - I have a feeling he can only really get turned on by new partners?? He was present and fully involved in the births and the 1st one was particularly hardcore - and I don't think this has helped matters!
All I know at the moment is that he has a very full on job, comes home, switches off - not really interested in discussing anything and when I go to bed he stays up late watching tv. So it feels like a bit of a solitary life, only being needed by the lovely children, and not being needed physically or mentally by husband....does that make sense??? Or am just rambling now??

stressmumble Thu 15-Jan-09 13:29:37

Oh and sorry wingandprayer - I have no idea if he is meeting his own needs as it were! I just don't have a clue - which to me is only further proof of how distant our lives are currently.

moonincancer Thu 15-Jan-09 18:55:34

maybe its a combination of all thing, stress and pressure of work, tiredness, looking at you as a mother not a sexual being, your "ramble" kind of gives all the answers, it seems like you are just stuck in a rut. i think you really have to prioritise time together and try to find your old selves again...ask for his help to do that, and ask how you can help him

Spero Thu 15-Jan-09 18:59:54

I would be worried that he refuses to even give counselling a go. If this is a problem for you, he should respect you enough to take it seriously. It sounds like you do need help from some one out side the marriage if it has been going on for so long and nothing has changed.

I don't think you can just let it drift on, if sex is important to you.

abedelia Thu 15-Jan-09 19:00:56

If you are not talking at all then that is not going to help - you need to find a way to make friends again. Is there anything you could start doing together that you both might find fun and could have a laugh over?? Ice skating, comedy nights? A bit of laughter can go a long way and help him not to just see you as a serious person / nurturer.

Youcancallmeal Sat 17-Jan-09 12:13:21

I suspect that he might be suffering from depression. Life as a day with young kids can be hard and I recognise some other aspects of his behaviour. See if you can get him to the GP. If he won't do that or go to counselling you may have to start suspecting that he is getting "it" elsewhere.

stressmumble Fri 23-Jan-09 13:04:23

Dear all
SOrry have not replied to all your useful 9and insightful) messages - but believe it or not last Fri checked his computer and guess what - he's been getting it from porn on the internet! going so far as to write himself emails detailing their vital statistics and telephone numbers, though when I confronted him he said he had not taken it any further.... the question is do I believe him...
Needless to say it has been a torrid time, he has agreed willingly to see a councillor and has re-connected with the family - says he has been repressing life and feelings and feels he has awoken from a coma like state where he has been angry and disconnected with the world (including me) What i need to decide is whether to forgive and forget?

abedelia Fri 23-Jan-09 14:14:06

Well, he is willing to fix things and go to counselling so that is positive. And at least he wasn't having a real affair, just looking at people who are unobtainable (though not sure about the telephone numbers thing - was it a chatline?).

stressmumble Fri 23-Jan-09 14:39:34

yes he does seem very willing - and no as I understand it the fantasty had moved onto actually making an escort type date - though he says he was too much of a coward to actually go through with anything. He admits to using a chatline a few times but got really stung on the credit card and never went there again. He says getting girls numbers etc was just a part of the fantasy and was never real etc... it's just I feel so betrayed and unattractive etc etc - the usual I expect. He now says all he wants is to show me and the family how much we mean to him and to make me feel like a much loved/needed wife again... just don't know if I am 'letting him get away with it' by not turfing him out the house!

lalalonglegs Fri 23-Jan-09 15:18:31

Not throwing him out isn't letting him get away with anything - it's making him stay and face up to his responsibilities. I can completely understand how betrayed you feel but try not to think in terms of punishing him but of using this as an opportunity to rebuild your relationship. If he does renege on his promise to quit the online perving and to go with you for relationship/sexual counselling then, yes, maybe a separation is the next step but, despite your anger, try to look ahead.

N1 Fri 23-Jan-09 17:31:24

Many years ago, I used to visit an old age home to talk to the people who lived there. It was just a few hours a week.

I think the older people have so much advice to share and they can base their advice on life experience.

Some advice is long winded, but the concept stays the same. In this case, I think the concept has 2 parts.

a) the question about the future (in the By stressmumble on Fri 23-Jan-09 13:04:23) "What i need to decide is whether to forgive and forget?".

Do you want to forgive?


b) Life teaches us things and we need time to learn. If everyone was punished to the horsed degree after the first mistake, then it would he difficult to learn and get experience about what's right and wrong. The man could potentially loose his family for making a mistake.

The lesson here is - anyone can make a mistake. If they make the same mistake over and over, it's more clear that they want to make that mistake. More importantly, if they make a mistake after being confronted, then the mistake isn't a mistake, it's more deliberate than accidental.

Finally, after doing something wrong, a person should be sorry and look sorry. They should put more effort into righting the wrong.

The description of climbing up the hill applies in real life. The wrong doer has to put that much more effort into showing that he is has an intention to improve.

As a prevention, is there anything that you and he could do to divert the same problem happening again, without going from one extreme to another or solving one problem and making another potential problem?

N1 Fri 23-Jan-09 17:32:38

I forgot to ask, though I think it's a bit soon to be asking, has there been any hint or suggestion of sex?

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