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Fancying other men

(12 Posts)
eviltart Wed 30-Sep-09 22:00:12

Originally posted this on AIBU but it was clearly in the wrong place.

I don't want or expect chandelier-swinging after 9 years together and 7 years marriage, but ... to give you an example of how things are, DH suggested going to bed early and here I am on MN. FGS.
Saw "other bloke" today and got butterflies and started behaving like f*ing tongue-tied teenager. blush

Q: at what point does fancying other blokes and not fancying your DH become a relationship-breaker??
(Note: I have not done anything about my current crush (or any previous ones) nor am I likely to).

lilacclaire Wed 30-Sep-09 22:40:13

Not sure how to answer that. Are you getting on with your dh otherwise? If you put some effort into your sex life with dh, then you will be more likely to get your 'crushes' into perspective.
I usually have a mini crush on someone or another, just keeps life interesting (am actually disappointed just now as don't have one), would never act on it, would never let it affect anything with my dp.

eviltart Thu 01-Oct-09 05:33:39

We are making massive efforts to get on iwth each other, and usually do. Sex life is just another effort AFAIC. Well, I've read enough threads on MN to know I'm not the only one, but don't want to have to fake it for the rest of my life.

notamumyetbutoneday Thu 01-Oct-09 08:46:45

For me the dealbreaker would be if i found myself wanting to spend time with my crush rather than DH, and if i never made any effort for DH but spent ages trying to look nice for the crush, and confiding int he crush instead of DH.

OrdinarySAHM Thu 01-Oct-09 09:16:09

You are not an 'evil tart' you are normal smile

I see it like a midlife crisis type of thing (even if you aren't middle aged) and I think I had one a couple of years ago.

I think it is probably common. You realise you are in a relationship you might stay in for the rest of your life, especially if you have children, and the sex has become less exciting, as it would after years of being with the same person, and you're thinking, should I accept that this is as good as it gets for the rest of my life or is there a chance that with someone else I could have a more exciting life, and if this is the case, am I doing wrong to myself by settling for less.

The thing is though, if you got with one of your crushes, the sex would be exciting for a honeymoon period, then if the man is a good man for you, you will simply end up in a relationship very similar to the one you were in originally. If the man is not so good but you were just blinded by sex, you could even end up in a worse relationship than the one you had originally. Then what are you going to do? - keep ending relationships, with all the accompanying trauma for everyone, and starting new ones, just to keep the exciting 'drug-like' effect of the honeymoon period?

You have the choice of having a less stressful life and the security of someone who will be there for you long term, but the sex gets less exciting after the honeymoon period, or you can choose a lifestyle of continually breaking up and forming new relationships with all the stress this causes but with exciting sex. You have to make that decision, depending on what you decide is most important to you.

Also, a reassuring thought is to look at all the couples you know and think, do any of them have a relationship you would rather have than the one you have got? I bet the answer would be no! What you have got is perfectly good enough, you just have to find contentment with it.

I used to get crushes and then get utterly obsessed by them til the whole thing got painful and stressful and horrible. I had a feeling of never being able to 'get enough' of something - but I didn't know what that thing was. I had to learn about contentment. Mine was wrapped up in my 'issues' as well though. If something in you is not right, people often look for something that makes them feel 'extreme' in the hope that it will fix it.

eviltart Thu 01-Oct-09 10:14:13

Thanks OSAHM. You have summed it up quite nicely I think. I try counting my blessings every single day, but it ain't working. I'm just bored with it all. Perhaps I'll have to take up paragliding or something.

WhenwillIfeelnormal Thu 01-Oct-09 10:48:51

You're wise to be worried that this is a tipping point, OP. I think it is. You've summed it up pretty well yourself. You don't fancy your DH, you fancy other men and you're avoiding sex with DH and regarding it as a chore. Yet you know that you love sex itself and therefore feel achingly depressed that you might never have exciting sex again.

Logically, you also know that another man isn't really the answer, especially if sex was fantastic and exciting when you first got together with DH. The rational side of you knows that this too, will pass.

Some things you might find helpful to answer are:

What could your DH do that would make you fancy him more? This can range from the mundance to the extreme e.g. lose weight, take more care of his appearance, make more effort for you etc. The extreme would be to have an affair himself, with someone who thought he was absolutely gorgeous and brilliant in bed. Would any of those things make you re-consider his qualities as a lover? (And if you're shaking your head thinking that no-one could feel this way about him, think twice - oh yes they could.)

What are you resenting about your DH at the moment? Resentment is a stone bonker passion-killer.

What is communication like between you? Are you honest about your feelings, hopes and desires, or are you both "chugging along", pretending to each other that everything is fine - and if you're not arguing, it must be okay, mustn't it?

Having answered these questions honestly, then try to step into DH's shoes.

He gets his self-esteem by being respected and desired. Yet more often than not, he sees contempt, resentment and repulsion in your eyes. Yet he can remember a time when you thought he was wonderful, when you couldn't keep your hands off him. He wants that woman back and remembers how much better he felt about himself then. Although he'd never acknowledge this about himself, he's as vulnerable to an affair as you are.

At this stage, you're probably both remaining faithful to each other because of a combination of morals and lack of opportunity. But those are not good enough safety nets.

The key to this is really good, honest communication. It will take a while and many chats - and lots of really active listening. For myself and all the women I know, opening up in this way and getting matching honesty is the first step to re-awakening desire.

This means telling him the answers to the questions I've posed above and asking him some yourself. Being honest about your crushes and telling him that you're worried about what they mean.

You will have seen on the many affair threads here that everyone bewails the fact that their spouses didn't tell them how vulnerable they were and how they were feeling prior to their affairs. So, this is the gift you'll be giving your DH - and he you.

Happy to help more if you need it.

WhenwillIfeelnormal Thu 01-Oct-09 11:10:29

Having read through some of the replies, forgot to say one of the most important bits!

I am not saying to you that you should "settle" at all. The worst thing you could do is say "Oh well, I'll take up hang-gliding then."

I am actually saying that you (and he) deserve a great sex life. You know what it's like when the sex you're having is mind-blowing and amazing....it is wonderful and puts every little niggle into perspective.

And believe me, it IS possible to have that with your DH.

mummee09v Thu 01-Oct-09 11:30:35

oh god

i have to say this does not sound good.

i used to fancy other men all the time when i was with my ex. i also used to snog other men on nights out etc, and had countless "flirtations" with other guys. i stopped fancying and wanting sex with him after maybe 2 years at the most. then towards the end, i ended up having an affair with a sexy, exciting man who made me realise there was no spark left with my ex. and even when me and my ex were first together the excitement was nothing like what i was feeling for this new guy.

so i asked my ex to leave (altho there were other issues as well, not just the affair, i just didn't want to be with him anymore)

i didn't really want to be with the other guy, just really fancied him, and ironically after i split with my ex i slept with him and it was quite shit!!!! but the point is, fancying him made me realise what was missing with my ex.

but then i started seeing my now-fiancee and found out the true meaning of love and lust, the sex is still HOT 2 1/2 years on and i love him more every day and can't imagine ever getting bored.

yeah i see attractive men around, i'm only human- but to me, my DF is the most gorgeous man in the world and i can't imagine being with anyone but him. and that, i believe, is how it SHOULD be. i believe if you are with the right person you would not want to look for excitement elsewhere.

not advising you to split up btw - just think you should have a look at your relationship!!!!

xx

WhenwillIfeelnormal Thu 01-Oct-09 12:14:22

Mummee, you said "i believe if you are with the right person you would not want to look for excitement elsewhere."

You see, this is where I think a lot of us go wrong. It's often not the person that's wrong, it's the state of the relationship.

A lot of research has been done on why the outcome of the primary relationship is different when women have affairs. We very often do that female thing of thinking that we must be with the wrong man if we are even considering other opportunities. So we delude ourselves that this must be true love with the affair partner, when in reality it's a form of temporary insanity mixed up with hormones. A lot of men seem to know this instinctively, which is why they very often don't see their affair as a sign that their marriage is doomed.

There is some evidence that men are becoming more "female" in their thinking, hence the increase in emotional affairs and you only have to look on this board for the amount of men who are leaving their wives and children because they "love their wife but are not in love with them". (Hugely frustrating when they fail to mention in all this that they hadn't started thinking this way until OW was on the scene, however, I digress).

What's missing from all this is some pragmatism and honesty. Mummee, in your case, it doesn't sound as though you ever reached high points with your ex - and so chances are, he might well have been the wrong person for you.

However, it's so different when you know that you did once think your DH was the right person and absolutely did reach amazing highs at the start. If this is the case, it's not the wrong person you're with - it's just that the relationship is all wrong at the moment.

Our society is full of people at the moment who rue the day they let their hormones and delusions of love take over. They realise sadly that the wife or husband they binned in favour of Mr. or Mrs. Wonderful was actually the right person after all. Tough, you might say, except that the pain all this causes children and individuals is incalculable.

agingoth Thu 01-Oct-09 12:25:49

I think you can probably tell there's something wrong if it really does go on for years and years.

In my case it was a good 6 years of not fancying H and getting inappropriate crushes.

I did end up sleeping with someone else while we were in a period ofjoint separation, and that was a catalyst to leave: it made me realise how far the lack of sex and romance had gone in our marriage. We have since split up.

Also, I didn't really love H anymore. I think not wanting sex was tied up with that, but I do know you can love and not fancy. It's hard. See how you go for a bit.

eviltart Thu 01-Oct-09 12:42:47

Thanks for your input everyone especially WWIFN.

The situation is actually a horrible mess, and I'm well aware that fancying other blokes is just a symptom of far deeper problems.

To answer the question, what could he do to make me fancy him more... I know the answer and I also know he cannot do it. There is no mystery, no challenge, no hint of flirtation with other people... he is like a devoted pet. I have told him this and he just looks bewildered. sad

We live together, and run a very successful business which means we are together 24/7, plus all the demands that small children put on you, so obviously that has a huge bearing on it. I've thought of giving up the business and doing something else but this is not an option a) because it would create a whole heap of financial problems b) couldn't get another job that would pay anything like as much and c) I quite like my job, just don't like having DH at home all day with me.

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