I've been married to my wife for one year now; we lived together for two years prior, after dating for just over a year.
While dating, we were intimate pretty often (twice weekly, the “Honeymoon” phase of the relationship).
When we moved in together, it became quite the opposite. The dry spells started to become dry months, with three-to-four months between being intimate.
We’re both active, healthy people but she appears to have lost all interest in sexual intimacy.
I’ve tried many of the things she’s mentioned, but it's like I'm being asked to complete the mortgage application every time I make a payment.
I bring flowers, I give massages, I’ve fulfilled her request for increased affection.
But I'm still getting the cold shoulder.
Recently, I’ve caught her pleasuring herself. I’m now feeling lied to and wondering if she is no longer even interested in me, instead of her having claimed she has a low sex drive.
I'm 31, she’s 28. Is this normal?
I’m even wondering about a new relationship at this point. Either she's having one on the side, or I should be looking for a new partner.
She’s given you few clues, only superficial asks.
It’s understandable you’re ready to give up on her.
But the situation doesn’t make sense, unless all she wanted was to be married.
Or, you’ve both withdrawn emotionally in this atmosphere of guess-who’s-responsible.
Speak up. And listen, too. Say you feel hurt, denied, and deceived about her having no libido.
Then ask her to say what she feels, and what she wants from this union.
You may both be leaning towards a break-up.
But it’s worth the effort of trying marital/sexual therapy before you make that decision.
Otherwise, you may each bring similar confusion into your next relationships.
My son, in his 30s, forbids me to have any contact with his ex. They’re divorced.
My relationship with his partner has always been strong, as it has been with my son. When they broke up, we were all sad.
The split, after ten years together, has had a very serious effect on my son. They’ve been parted for three years and he still doesn’t trust anyone.
I once contacted this ex after they parted, and my son was extremely upset with me.
It's taken a long time for him to begin to trust me again, and I still don't feel he does.
Recently, his ex-partner contacted me on my birthday and I’d like to reciprocate when his birthday comes around.
But I don't want to lose the trust of my son entirely.
Am I wrong to feel I'm entitled to have my own relationship with his ex?
If an ongoing good relationship with your son is most important to you, why keep irritating what’s clearly a serious wound for him?
His ex may’ve hurt him more deeply than you know. If so, this former partner may also know that contacting you even for your birthday – a seemingly nice gesture – will knowingly upset your son.
His general distrust may be signalling a withdrawal from people and possible depression.
Try to spend some time with him, avoiding all mention of his ex. See if he’ll go out with you for a coffee or a movie, or leave his place to come over for a meal together.
If he won’t, encourage him to see his doctor and/or to talk to a counsellor.
He’s the priority here.
My husband’s a great partner, except for a blind spot he has about my “issues,” especially those in my work life.
He’s always trying to “fix” them, and then gets upset when I don’t follow his suggestions.
But he offers ideas that don’t fit my needs, e.g. he’ll tell me to fire an annoying co-worker when I don’t have that authority.
Even at home, some of his “solutions” aren’t possible.
Instead of accepting those realities, he gets annoyed and says I don’t let him help me.
How do I avoid this repeated dead end?
Shed more light on the problem when you describe it.
And be clear that you’re just sharing your day and looking for empathy, not expecting him to take charge.
Example: With an employee problem, state ahead the company’s limits on how you can respond.
Sometimes, thank him for just listening, then return the favour and ask about his day.
Tip of the day:
When sex is absent and the reasons unclear, counselling may help or a break-up is likely.