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POLL RESULTS: Make it 'til you fake it?: (20 comments)

POLL: Make it 'til you fake it?

Friday, May 15, 2009 - 12:00 AM

A reader writes... Q: I have been married for 10 years. My wife is a great woman, fantastic mother, beautiful and caring. I love her dearly, but our sex life has been a struggle ever since we got married. Once we got married it was like a switch turned off and her sex drive nearly went away completely. We are at a point now that I just have to wait/hope she is in the mood. That will happen about twice a month. My real frustration comes whenever I'm in the mood and try to initiate sex. I've been coldy rejected so many times that I'm nervous to even try now. Why is this a one-way street? I've expressed my feelings about this countless times and we argue around in circles. She recently asked me to trust her to take care of my needs. She says it wouldn't be right for her to give in and "fake it." I'm also frustrated there are no other options besides intercourse. We tried going to counseling once and the therapist was terrible. She kept asking us what we should do. We've been arguing for 10 years about it! How would we know? I've never cheated but I'm so frustrated I'm afraid I may cheat if given the chance. What do I/we do?

POLL: It's wrong to "fake it."
 
10% (100) Yes, it is. But I do it anyway.
 
16% (157) Yes. And I never do.
 
20% (198) No, it isn't. But I still do it.
 
13% (128) No, it isn't. And I never fake.
 
38% (366) Unghh! Ahhhh! Ohhhh! (Sorry, what was the question?)
949 people have voted in this poll. (This poll is not active.)
Stevarooni
Lover

From: KCMO

Posts: 64

Registered:
Jun 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 12:24 AM (#47809)

I'd suggest trying another therapist. It's good that your wife isn't faking it, but she also isn't trying very hard to "trust her to take care of my needs", because it's obvious that your needs are far from being met. A therapist could provide a more neutral place for you to discuss what you need, her to express what she's will/able to provide, and hopefully find a way to compromise so that neither of you feels wronged or overwhelmed. There are a slew of medical or emotional problems that could be at work here, or it could be that her libido just isn't as strong as yours. If you can't discuss this and come to some solution, a therapist might be able to provide some options neither of you has considered.

Personally, I think that cheating would be the wrong thing to do. If monogamy is an expectation both of you have, then you might have to come to a different agreement. It sounds like you think the marriage is wonderful otherwise, so divorce wouldn't be a viable option. Good luck!


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Capesnbabes
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Posts: 5

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Jan 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 12:42 AM (#47810)
In Response to Stevarooni (#47809):

Without getting too personal, is your wife on birth control? I'm gonna royally screw up this spelling but my wife was on Depapavara(sp?). It was birth control shot she took that DRASTICALLY reduced her sex drive but once she went off of that, things got a lot better. But we were also seeing a counselor too - not just for that but that discussion came up a lot.

I'd check on that and see if her birth control (if she is on BC) might have something to do with her sex drive being Kaput.


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Murgatroyd
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Posts: 300

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Jan 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 12:55 AM (#47811)

Stevarooni is right -- try another therapist. There are various schools of psychotherapy, and some of them just don't work in some situations. (Sounds to me like you got a Rogerian -- you might just as well have run an "Eliza" program on your PC.)

Once we got married it was like a switch turned off and her sex drive nearly went away completely.

Have your wife see a medical doctor or two! She may have a undiagnosed hormonal problem.

I've been coldy rejected so many times that I'm nervous to even try now.

She recently asked me to trust her to take care of my needs.

I'm also frustrated there are no other options besides intercourse.

You may meet with some resistance from your wife if and when you try to have the problem analyzed by a specialist. It doesn't seem as though she particularly gives a damn about solving your problem.


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faile
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Posts: 2

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Jun 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 02:01 AM (#47813)

The BC you are referring to is Depo Provera. There are actually a number of drugs that can cause libido issues - many antidepressants, in fact. She should definitely see a doctor. If she won't agree to try seeing another counselor, you should go alone.


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Caffeine
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Posts: 46

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Feb 2009
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 06:19 AM (#47815)

Hmm, there are (as most of the time) several points that should be taken into account.

1. Women are said to have less sex drive than men. (I'm a girl - uhm, woman - screw it, I'm female (that's for sure) and you couldn't tell it by me, but many women I know tell the same thing.)

2. For many women, marriage equals to "Wow, now I will never again have to have sex unless I want to!" (Sad, but true.) Maybe that was the fact with your wife?

3. As stated above, several medications and states of mind can lower the sex drive.

4. Over the years, some partners get less attracted by their spouse.

5. Sometimes daily life simply "kills" your sex drive - work, worries, children, general not-being-content, ...

Well, all these things (and some more of which I am probably not aware right now) could be the origin or origins of the problem you and your wife are having. As to solving the whole mess, a counsellor might be a good thing to consider if you decide you cannot go on living this way. But first I would try to sort things out, just the two of you... try to talk it out calmly, put your worries and fears out in the open (which is frightening, I know, but sometimes it helps). There are several new points you might want to consider...

* Maybe your wife feels stressed out by your requests (which she probably feels are "too much" or "too egotistical" or "never care for her feelings" etc.).

*Where is the romance and heat in your relationship? Do you have date nights, surprises, little gifts etc.? (These things won't work if she suspects you only do it to get her in bed!)

* Are the two of you trying to stay attractive for each other?

* If all else fails, what kind of ideas has she how to take care of your needs? Maybe she is really not aware of how desperate you are. Or she has some suggestions she did not find the opportunity to tell you. Or, that would be difficult, she really doesn't give a damn. (In this case you would have to find out if you are content with things the way they are - or make a drastic change...)


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Klytus
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Apr 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 06:25 AM (#47816)

Sex isn't everything... but it sure as hell ain't *nothing*, either!

This happened to my and my ex-wife. Your wife needs to know that it is *NOT* fair for her to be the only one who is allowed to decide when the 2 of you have sex. You entered into the marriage fully expecting a regular, healthy sex life, and if she took that away from you once she had the ring, it makes it sound like she she pulled the old bait-and-switch. Unfair, and uncool. I know you love her and how wonderful she is, but you have your own needs, they matter, and it is *not* fair for those to go unmet.

So, before you cheat, tell her that you want and need sex, and if she is not willing to work with you on providing it, then you will simply find someone who will. Who knows? Maybe she'll be cool with the idea. If she *isn't* cool, then it may motivate her to take your needs seriously. Or, it may piss her off and threaten divorce if you do. If this happen, then ask HER for ideas on how to fix the problem. If her solution is that you should "just deal with it" then you know EXACTLY where you stand with her... and it means she isn't the wonderful lady you think she is.


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CasualNotice
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Posts: 49

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Jun 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 06:58 AM (#47817)

I'm not sure what you expected from your therapist. It sounds (from your description) that you expected to walk into the first session together and have her magically tell you everything you needed to know to have a perfect marriage. Relationship therapy--especially when sexual relations are the difficulty--is rarely like that.

For one thing, no one ever just has a magic epiphany and everything's all better. For another, I doubt that she would be able to find out a lot about your sexual difficulties with both of you in the room. You may want to give therapy another try, and this time take it seriously instead of expecting a stranger to be able to translate your (and your wife's) embarrassed euphemisms and half-mumbled demurrals.

Beyond that, you've got a hand, a bathroom, and a jar of Vaseline, and I assume you know how to use them. I also assume you don't call the neighbor if your wife won't fix you a sandwich, so why should you consider an affair for this?


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NunyaBidness
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Apr 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 07:27 AM (#47818)

We had a similar problem. First, find a good clinical psychologist. In my wife's case, it was a combination of misdiagnosed and badly treated thyroid issues (normal blood readings are worthless if ABSORPTION is the problem). He referred her to an OB/GYN/Endocrinologist.

And second, of course, is the better counseling you get from a clin psych as opposed to a social worker.

It may unconsciously be a control issue on her part--one of the few things where she has total control and is clinging to it for self-image.


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TheOriginalJes
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Posts: 205

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Jan 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 10:45 AM (#47822)
In Response to Caffeine (#47815):

I agree with Caffeine on just about every point she's making. Solely because it's about needing to understand both sides.

Ten years ago, if the sudden change was just a decision on her part, then I'd say listen to Klytus. But, it's been so long that you've lived with the situation; I just don't see an easy fix for you.

However, in the absence of answers, I do have a suggestion.

Take care of yourself. And I don't just mean masturbate. Get some exercise, shower, man-scape (just a little), lose weight and tone up.

I'm suspecting that after 10 years of arguing hopelessly, you've let yourself go a bit. And, I know that this is just an assumption. But, I think that if you start looking and feeling better about yourself, she may just find herself to be more in the mood to be with you.

There is a catch. You have to be doing it for you. If you do it for her, you may just be miserable with muscles. That won't do any good either. So much of this is about a proper attitude in ways we all take for granted. So, just try to stop thinking and start doing.

It's always worked for me when I've been down.


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Azerik
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Posts: 35

Registered:
Apr 2009
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 01:12 PM (#47824)

Wow, I don't know how to answer this one. Mostly because I've been in this boat for the last 17 or so years myself and I still haven't figured out what to do about it.

In my case it wasn't getting married that seemed to flip the switch to off, but the birth of our first child. After that it seemed like she'd declared victory and left the field.

Unlike the example here, my wife will get into it if I press the issue and doesn't resist it, but she just never thinks of it on her own. According to her, she just never wants to. She'll go along if I initiate, but if I don't... the longest stretch so far I think is about 4 months before I gave up and got things started.

The other difference to the example and us is that other than this point we're happy in our marriage. From the tone here, it sounds like the example couple isn't. If I had to give advice on that aspect, I'd say give counseling a go one more time and then seriously evaluate the health of the relationship.

Differing sex drives is common. Men and women typically have different frequency needs anyway, and those needs change over time. What is missing here is her willingness to see that there *is* a problem at all. In a healthy relationship, there will be some effort to solve the problem. My wife has talked to her doctor about this numerous times (thus far without success, but we're still working on it), it sounds like the woman above just doesn't care that his needs aren't being met. *That* is a sign that she doesn't care about the relationship at all.

Go find a marriage counselor. Talk to them a few times on your own and explain the problem. Any good therapist will help you explore the problem from your end and then want your wife to come participate. Give her another chance to see that there is a problem and see if she's willing to put in the work to solve it. If she isn't, then maybe it's time to call it a day and see if you can find someone else. I hate to recommend divorce, but I also hate to see people suffer in a marriage that is broken and can't/won't be fixed.

Good luck.


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TheOriginalJes
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Posts: 205

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Jan 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 03:19 PM (#47825)

Is it at all possible that she isn't enjoying it the way she used to? I mean physically, although I wouldn't discount emotionally.

There was a special on the BBC a few years back about women who just couldn't reach orgasm, or feel sexual stimulation.

Couple that possibility with the fact that child birth can cause some serious changes in the female body.

Is it a subject you feel comfortable asking her about?


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zenvis
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Posts: 1

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May 2009
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Friday, May 15, 2009 - 04:37 PM (#47826)

When we had that problem it turned out that I was the problem. I would come home and sit on the couch when the wife would be working her butt off. She would be exhausted and not interested in sex because she was tired. So I started helping her and the kids; cleaning around the house too. And you know what? It helped. I was the hero and she made love to me 3-4 times a week.

So my advice is stop asking what can be done or what is wrong and start helping her out and it wouldn't hurt to serenade her too.


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bknabe
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Dec 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Saturday, May 16, 2009 - 12:05 AM (#47831)

A lot of good advice, a little bad. I would say for sure to check out another therapist and her get checked by a good endocrynologist. For your part, try romancing your wife - with no strings. Don't try to initiate anything other than an evening together watching her favorite romantic movie. Bring roses, tell her she's beautiful, in general let her know she's sexy to you. You can have sex with yourself, but romance takes two.


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TrulyCapricious
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Posts: 4

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Apr 2009
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Saturday, May 16, 2009 - 12:35 AM (#47832)

Is it possible that you'd get better results if you put in a bit more effort? If she doesn't feel sexy, I guarantee that she won't want to have sex. So make her feel sexy.

Tell her she's beautiful. Pay attention to what she's wearing and if she's dolled up, let her know that you can't keep your eyes off of her. Bring her random flowers. Hold her hand. Do SOMETHING beyond saying "Hey baby, let's screw."

Men watch porn. Women read romance novels. There's a reason for that. Turn on the charm and you'll have a good chance of being rewarded.


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Murgatroyd
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Posts: 300

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Jan 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Saturday, May 16, 2009 - 03:13 AM (#47833)

Hmm ... I find it hard to believe that nobody has asked the obvious question yet:

Have you tried asking her just what the hell happened to make her enthusiasm for sex take a nosedive?

She may not want to tell you, especially if the answer is something like "I'm not in love with you any more," or "Your body disgusts me," or "I don't want to get pregnant again," or "I've never liked sex, I just pretended to like it so you'd marry me," or "I'm having an affair with my boss and I feel guilty when I have sex with you."

But right now there is at most one person who knows the reason she has changed. Perhaps she won't tell you. Or perhaps she can't tell you because she doesn't know, in which case you'll need to convince your wife to go to a therapist or an MD.

She recently asked me to trust her to take care of my needs.

You'll need to have her give you a slightly more informative answer than this.


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stuckinontario
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Posts: 7

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May 2009
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Saturday, May 16, 2009 - 12:14 PM (#47836)

My advice is simple:

Leave her.

My ex just left me after a 7-yr relationship that sounds almost exactly the same, only my situation might've been even worse. My ex only wanted it about ONCE a month (actually, maybe not even that much)! I'd try to make light of it & joke that "the stars needed to be aligned just right in order for her to get in the mood" - problem was, is just wasn't funny, 'cause it was totally true.

Having sex ONLY when she wanted it eventually made me feel like I'd been reduced to a dildo that she could take out of a drawer & use when she wanted. She never offered to give me a "helping hand" in the meantime, & when we did have sex, it had to be when/where/how she wanted it or it wouldn't happen at all. My mistake is that, like you, I accepted the situation & settled for what I could get, which certainly wasn't enough for me.

As a result, my confidence went kaput & my performance in bed suffered, which only made things that much worse when neither of us were having the good sex we really wanted on the rare occasions that it actually happened. In short, I became pussy-whipped, & the stupid thing is that I wasn't even getting the pussy!

IF you think your relationship is otherwise healthy (I have my doubts), you could cut to the heart of the problem & see a sex therapist, but if she knows you're not happy & she just doesn't care enough to do anything about it, your relationship likely has some major issues causing the lack of sex, instead of the other way around. If you're seriously at the point where you're giving some real thought to the idea of having an affair against your better nature, you may as well get out, 'cause there is no magic switch on her that'll turn her back into the sex kitten she was before you got married. For whatever reason, she's pretty much done having sex with you, & that's probably not gonna change.

Whatever you decide to do, good luck to you.


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meshugunah
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Posts: 6

Registered:
Dec 2006
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Sunday, May 17, 2009 - 01:50 AM (#47838)

Some really good advice here!
My suggestions, after 30 years of marriage:
1.Thorough medical exams for each of you, but especially for your wife. Go to each others' exams, if you're comfortable with that - medical reasons are behind a surprising number of low libidos. Have either of you EVER discussed this with an MD?
2.Court your dear wife again - many's the time sex felt like just another chore on the list instead of something special!
3. Speaking of chores, check out the workload distribution around the house and even it out so neither of you is too tired to get it on.
4. And, tell your wife from me - "My dear, sometimes the best way to get "in the mood" is to begin, whether you're into it or not. Physical stimulation will lead to the appropriate mental state - I speak from experience!"


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Veldan
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Posts: 12

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Mar 2009
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Sunday, May 17, 2009 - 09:08 PM (#47841)

You need to be very careful, despite the common phrases that get spouted to make you feel better, sex is VERY important and has been the downfall of more than a couple of relationships.

You should be asking all the normal questions, why it is this way? Are there any obvious problems? could we try to spice it up? roleplay, costumes, toys or what not.

This is a matter which you should definately bring to her attention as it could be potentially damaging to your relationship in the long run.

(Unrelated side not, check out the statistics between marriages where women feel they are not getting enough sex versus ones where men feel they aren't... In all the relationships montiored 90% of the ones where females weren't getting enough ended, where only 25% of the ones where men were lacking sex did... Apparently women are a lot less tolerant of not having enough sex)


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meshugunah
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Posts: 6

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Dec 2006
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Monday, May 18, 2009 - 01:37 AM (#47842)

You may also wish to check out this article from Redbook: http://www.redbookmag.com/love-sex/advice/8-kinds- of-sex

Take comfort, you're not alone - there ARE solutions, but you'll have to remember the love that led the two of you to marry in the first place, and work at it, probably with help from a professional of some kind.


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Kyle_Voltti
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Posts: 11

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Jan 2008
Re: Make it 'til you fake it? (Score: 1)
posted Monday, May 18, 2009 - 06:13 PM (#47878)

I'd like to know if your wife is physicaly intimate with you. I don't mean sex but does she hug you when you or her come in the door? does she kiss you when she gets up in the morning? If she still shows you physical affection then i think that therapy could work and that you have to give it time. If not then you need to seriously concider wether or not this marrage is the right thing for both of you.


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