Lack of attention

by c

The lack of emotional and physical attention is more than I can take. We got married when I was 20. I was young, but I really did love him. After we got engaged, he gave me herpes. This made me feel ruined honestly. He convinced me he got it from an old girlfriend and he never knew he had it. I didn't have a great home life and I remember going down the aisle doubting myself but I did anyway.

As soon as we got married the intimacy stopped. He acted angry with me. When we had arguments he threatened "we'll just get a divorce". It scared me because I felt I had nowhere else to go, so I backed down. I would ask to fool around and he'd turn me down. He'd instigate and when I responded to him he'd chuckle and turn me down. He wanted to know I wanted him, but he didn't really want me. It got to the point that I stopped playing this game and would just say no because he wasn't going to follow through. This left me feeling inadequate. I had only had one brief partner before him.

He'd also told me he only had 2 intimate partners. Truth is he actually had no idea. I found out after a year of marriage he had been married and divorced before me. I also found where he had flirtations on line a few weeks before our marriage. But yet I stayed. We were intimate about 3-5 times a year. Eventually we started a business together and had a child, which was planned to a t.

About a year ago we tried having an open marriage and I found out I actually was being treated wrong. He found
out he loved me and how "high maintenance" other women were. I've told him I don't feel we should be married any longer, but now he's begging, saying he loves me. That the way we can get along and work together is special. That intimacy isn't that important, that friendship is. But if I want it, he'll never turn me down again.

He is trying. He's doing laundry and helping with our child and giving me breaks. But while I do love him, honestly I look at him like a friend. I do not want to make love with him anymore. I think he's just killed that in me for him. I'm scared though because my job is in the balance. I'll be on my own I know. I’ll give him the house because his 6 family members live within a quarter of mile radius.

I love his family. And he's a good dad. But so many years of feeling like a work horse at home and work, and getting no love back, I just don't have it in me. I think he's more scared of his life without me. And it's all I know. So many people think we're so great together, because we do joke and we don't argue (because I stopped trying).

So what do you do when it's "ok"? Should this be good enough? Probably a lot of women would be happy for a friendship marriage. He tells me I won't find anyone I can get along with like him. That at my age (32) he doesn't know what I expect to find. We've been married for 12 yrs. I have a 2 year old. I'm just scared. Everything - my job, work, home is in jeopardy. Am I being unreasonable?

Comments for Lack of attention

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Be loyal to your needs
by: Fatemeh

Every human being has some basic emotional needs such as stability, intimacy, love, self-respect, fun and...

We are responsible for our own needs at the very first step because we feel them in our body as no one else can feel. If you feel any kind of discomfort in your body that means your body is sending you signals that your current situation is not good enough for you (such as fatigue, headaches, insomnia, lack of motivation and pleasure and etc.) and you need to make some changes in your life. If you ignore these signs you will end up with depression after a while... because you have betrayed your body, you ignored what it tried to tell you and you send this message to your body that what you need isn't as important as others needs and your body consider herself worthless and it ruins your self-esteem.

P.S: I'm a psychologist from Iran and I read this post while I was searching something else. Since I'm not an English language user so sorry for possible mistakes :)
Hope this helps.

To "Lack of Attention"
by: Stephanie

This is a mess. This man is abusive. I would seek counseling ASAP if you have insurance coverage for it or speak to someone older and wiser and whom you trust and would look out for your interests. Best wishes.

by: Vi

You should try counseling first. You said that he is changing. Every person is capable of changing. It is up to you if you will give him a chance to rekindle your relationship.

Similar Predicament
by: Daisy

I came on here looking for some sort of advice and found this post - which is very similar to my predicament - and am so happy to have 'found' it. Like you, I also married at 20, and have been married now for 10+ years. My husband and I have much in common in terms of our general goals and outlook, but I don't think I have ever been 'in love' with him.

My whole dating and engagement I asked people why I didn't feel attracted to him, why I wasn't 'walking on sunshine' to be around him, etc. They all told me everything would be fine after marriage and I had too little experience or people to reference to know the difference.

Truth is, it never got better. I suffered through constant doubts for the last ten years, waiting for something to 'click' for me that never did. He is a nice guy, a good father to our children, we get along easily enough, but I am very un-attracted to him, he doesn't motivate or inspire me or lift me up, the whole relationship drags me down and makes me feel depressed, weighted, tired, and trapped. But day to day isn't bad and he's a good guy.

With all those single girls out there, how can I pass up on a stable situation with a good guy who is the father of my children? Maybe what I am looking for doesn't exist? I would be looking for all his "Hashkafa"(viewpoints on life) and goals, but in a different body, more masculine, protective, and someone that I have natural chemistry with.

What do I do? It's not so bad, but that still doesn't make it so good. But maybe this is it. Maybe what I want doesn't exist in confused.

It's your choice
by: Lyn

Always remember that divorce is not always the end. Rather it might be a new beginning, a new chance to live your life...

Lack of Attention
by: Sarah

Well, I know you are scared. Yet your heart and your gut are telling you that something is wrong. Your brain thinks everything is "just o.k."

My advice is to listen to your gut. It is a sixth sense, as I have discovered.

He's being nice. Yeah. Is it love? It’s probably not. More likely, it's fear of the financial consequences he would face if you divorced him, such as alimony, child support, the house, or losing your income.

I would advise you to listen to your heart, as well as your gut. You are a young woman yet, with a brighter future. I am divorcing a husband of 30 years at the age of 57. Sadly, it took me too long to find the courage and the strength. Divorce scared me at first, since I thought I was leaping off a cliff into a sea of uncertainty. I was taking a risk, I thought, and I never take risks. Yet, lately I have begun to realize that life is always a risk. Marriage is a leap of blind faith. Childbirth is too. Yet, most women, including myself aren't scared of those plunges, although there IS more to be scared about those choices than there is about divorce.

I wish you wisdom to make your choices and courage to follow your heart.

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