I purposely did not write yesterday. I had to work and normally I have plenty of time to write when I am there, but I needed some time just think. The night before was rough as my wife and I had a talk and it really did not go so well. I think I will start there.
I mentioned in the last post that we talked about our upcoming return to our normal lives. Our conversation let me anything but optimistic about what was coming. I was already down and that did not help. That was three days ago. Two days ago, when I posted my last post, I couldn’t get out of bed. I just couldn’t. I called in sick and just stayed there. I probably only left for about 4 hours of the day. I was going deeper into this depression that overwhelms me. It was as bad as it has ever been even before I began my medication. That last time it was even close to this bad was around Christmas and my birthday (which are really close together). And that had the added misery of those to holidays. Did I mention that I hate Christmas and my birthday? That will definitely be a later post, but I will just say that those two days are usually just miserable. I make them fun and memorable for my kids, but I will never like those holidays. But back on topic.
In those 4 hours I was out of bed I wrote my wife an email. It was much of what I wrote 2 posts ago about how I believe my selfishness led us down this path. I sent her a text telling her that I sent her an email. Then I immediately followed it with an email that I think I already regret sending it. She did not need to hear about my problems when she has her own. I need to deal with my selfishness and fix that so we can heal. She responded that she would not read it then. I thought for a minute and said she is welcome to read it if she wants because it says how I am feeling right now and how I have been processing things in my head. But she needs to know that I am not looking for anything from her. It is not an email that I want her to feel sorry for me (which was also in the email). I am not the victim here, I am the perpetrator. So I don’t need anything from her. I just wanted her to know where my head is because she always asks.
When we finally saw each other at the end of the night I knew she read the email. I could see it in her face. She asked if we could talk and I said I don’t think I could feel any worse so now would be a good time. I said just don’t hold back or sugar coat anything. She sat there for a minute and then we talked.
She told me that while she promised me to work on our marriage for a year and then reevaluate where we are, she does not believe that it will work out. She said that she does not think that she will ever be what I really want. She said she will never be this fun exciting adventurous person that I want. She is never going to want sex, think about sex, crave it the way I do. She said she believes that I will always want new and exciting. I will float from girl to girl getting a new pretty face. I will feed off the excitement of a new relationship. She thinks that I want to stand out and be desired by women and as soon as that changes into a lasting relationship I will move along. She believes that she will never be able to provide me with those feelings. She said she loves me but she does not think that I love her in the right way anymore.
Well, thinking I couldn’t feel any worse was definitely wrong. I really did not know what to say. I still am stunned now two days later. I don’t think she is right about a lot of it. I don’t think I could ever jump from girl to girl. She thinks I want meaningless sex and the excitement of the chase. That is not the case. Even in my affair I built a connection through texting well before I did anything with the OW. I did not go into detail in my posts, but I felt connected to her. The emotional affair was there before the physical.
I tried to explain that it was not about the sex for me. I know that was part of it but that is not what drove me to do what I did. She said that she could not believe that because every time I saw her it was for sex. There might have been a dinner or a walk or whatever but I went there for sex. I could not really argue because she was right I did go there for sex, and every time we did have sex. I told her she was right. I did do that. I don’t know if I ever believed that all of this is about sex. I told her I really cannot believe that this is about our sexual disconnect otherwise I would have done this well before now. We have always had this issue and I had never done it before. She agreed to that point but did not know what else to say, neither did I.
We ended up going to sleep as I had to be up and gone by 5am the next morning and it was already midnight. I have a long drive on these days so it gives me lots of time to think. To process. To have delusional thoughts in my head. To come up with the worst possible scenarios. It was not a fun drive.
Work was awful. I had to deal with some personnel issues that involved disciplining a few of the people I work with. That is never a fun process. Luckily they understood why and agreed to what was going on. So on that part it made my job easier. Then I got the long drive back with more time inside my own head.
I am not really sure how to respond. It wasn’t the chase that I liked it was the attention she gave me. When I tell her this she says it is because when you are there you are there for sex and her attention it on me. Not the kids, or bills, or laundry, or any other shit that you cannot get away from at home. It is as I have described many times “fantasy land”.
But the attention was more than when I was with her. It was the messages we would send back and forth in various formats. A lot of our conversations were suggestive in nature. We didn’t sext, but we had conversations that were definitely arousing. She has seen them and said there is no way should would ever be able to text me like that.
I am lost at to what to do. Do I want to stay with her? Yes, I think I do. Do I expect her to succumb to my every sexual wish? No, that is not fair to her. Should she have to increase the frequency to meet my wants? No, but at the same point the person with the higher sex drive is always at the mercy of the person with the lesser drive. It is hard to compromise here because I at least want her to want me when we do it. I don’t want her to do it because she “has to”. Can I live with what we had/have knowing that there are people who have the same drive as I do? Knowing that I had that with the affair. Knowing that what I seem to want is only an hour and a phone call away. I see this as a no win situation, but that has been the way it has always been for us.
I still don’t believe that this is about the sex. I still think we both have the same problem, we just manifest it differently. We want to be valued by our spouse. We want to feel needed in numerous ways that are not monetary or utilitarian. We the other person to recognize what we do for each other. We need to want each other. Do we have that now? No, I can say we don’t. Is that where we need to work towards? It is as good as any place I guess. She manifests this lack of validation as depression and withdrawing herself from me and the family. I have now (in the last year) done the same. Do I need the physical side to gain that validation for me? Yes, I do, but that is not the only thing. What do I need to do to validate her in our relationship? How do I make her happy? I wish I knew. I wish I knew 20 years ago, 15 years ago, hell, even 1 year ago and I think we would be in a much different place.
I am not convinced that she will put all of herself into rebuilding the marriage because she does not think it will work out and she has every right to be reserved and not trust that it will work out because of what I have done. But then again what do I know, I am the lying, cheating husband who is selfish and can’t even make his wife happy. Good luck to me. At least I have therapy tomorrow where hopefully he can talk me down off this ledge.
Why fit in when you were born to stand out? – Dr. Seuss
Even back steps are moving you in the direction you should go. It’s a treacherous journey!
Interesting timing for this. Assuming nothing else comes up, my next post is about sex, and how I think even the act of sex isn’t about sex. Sex is about connection, it’s about emotion, and it’s about being valued. It’s a form of communication, and it becomes symbolic of the relationship.
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I forgot to ask earlier, have you found a way to broach this very important topic in any counselling? I think it needs to be addressed by a specialist, and together. I highly recommend trying to find a sex therapist who is good! It is the most embarrassing thing. We did it (not a good therapist though.) We had a fantastic sex life for 25 years. Both of us LOVED it and were very in tune with each other. In fact Roger could not understand WTF was going on because his affair sex was below par, and he wondered why the hell he was bothering with fucking a corpse who just lay there. Unfortunately, about two years ago I could no longer cope with the visuals of them together and I have completely lost my ability to be sexual – even alone! I feel bereft, grief-striken and incredibly sexually frustrated (which is weird wjen I am not sexual? Can’t get excited and certainly can’t orgasm, no matter what I/we try – and I used to multiple easily every time- sorry TMI just trying to illustrate changes). I got my hormones tested, no problem there. I’ve taken supplements, tried watching a little porn, naddah. I think it is a huge issue and feeling emotionally safe is a gigantic issue for women. Hope you can find someone who can help x
She has an appointment with one but I never thought about going together. I am asking my therapist tomorrow about a marriage therapist (because he knows about my trust issues). I will talk with my wife and see if she want to try it together or if she just wants to go herself.
She told she has the same visualizations but not to your degree. She has not asked for many dirty details so that might be in her favor.
I loved our sex life when she was into it. I am a perfectionist so i always want to be better, but I really enjoyed it when we were both there for each other and connected. She sounds a lot like you with the exception of the drive. However, when she is not connected, it was hard, still good, but it left me wanting more. So much more…
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I agree with your wife’s comments completely. I wish I had said those same words to my husband 18 months ago. Our lives will never be the same. He loves the attention from women, and I cannot be what he wants. For now, we are “working” on this, though most times I feel we are simply plodding along. He does everything I ask of him but I feel the damage in my heart has already been done. And it cannot be repaired. I tell myself that I can fake it for the sake of my family (3 young children) but it gets harder as time goes on. My happiness matters, too. And I just don’t see it, given he took our marriage and flushed it down the fucking toilet. It totally destroys you. SW
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Thank you for your comment. If my wife really feels this way I won’t want her to stay. She deserves happiness. I also want my kids to understand that their happiness is important. If you aren’t happy what image are you modeling for them. As much as you want to stay for them, maybe it will be harder on them. I don’t know your situation so this is just something to think about.
Could your wife really walk away from her children to go and live with her parents? Or would she take the children with her? SWxo
She would leave the older two and take the youngest. That was her plan a month ago. She has asked to leave a few times and each time she thinks the kids would be better off with me. But do I really think she could? No!
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What a scary prospect for any mother to face. She needs some very good mental health care immediately. SWxo
She is in therapy now and it is helping. It is hard to believe but once it all calmed down she is now dealing with this much better than I am. Which makes me feel worse because she shouldn’t have to worry about me.
I just wanted to say I hope that you can figure it out. It sounds like you and your wife have a genuine love for each other. I understand both of your view points. Sex isn’t just a physical act. It is about the connection behind it. I’ve discovered in my relationships that my sex drive was directly connected to how I was feeling about our relationship. When I felt happy and secure, I was very interested in sex all the time. When I was unhappy, I didn’t want it at all. Maybe you can offer to abstain for a period of time while you and W work on your emotional relationship? Show her that it’s not about the physical act for you?
I would gladly do that. I tried it before I ever had the affair. I just stopped asking to see if she would make any advances towards me. Two months later I gave up. She didn’t even notice. It just hurt more than anything. But now maybe things will be different.
But abstaining to work on intimacy is a JOINT decision. Just stopping without discussion is not useful. The sex therapist should discuss exercises to encourage intimacy. They are quite useful if this has been a problem that you have struggled with together and it does certainly sound like you have been on very different trajectories with you trying harder and harder and backing away more and more. I feel for you both, but I do believe libido differences can be worked out if there is still a heap of love.
We are going to try and see a sex therapist and see where it goes. I have always tried to work on it alone because I have always thought there was something wrong with me. I thought I wasn’t normal. Now I know there is no normal as far as sex is concerned. Thank you for your thoughts. They have been helpful.
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It’s lonely at the top. It’s lonely where no one else seems to be able to relate on your level. Or I’m your case out of bounds. It is a different sort of relationship
It’s started as an adult aged relationship where your world has different priorities than the one you started with when you were younger. Adult life is more complex and finding someone else who is on the same page is a rare thing as we run the ‘rat race’. As for sex. Males have a tarnished rep. Its tough for a woman to shake the stigma because they are risking more. But it is built for both to enjoy yourself on an equal level. Bonding with something that you and your partner only share. Sometimes it’s a selfish natural urge/stress relief but just connecting with one another on a deeper, personal level is just as important.
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I’m loving your posts! Your honesty and openness is a breath of fresh air to read. I appreciate hearing your point of view, thank you for sharing.
I am glad I can share and give something back with this mess I have caused. Thanks for reading.
Reblogged this on Absent Lovers Paradox and commented:
Interesting read by a previous cheter. He knows he’s to blame for his affair. His wifes feelings about his affair being about sex are fair. I’m in agreement with her, even though I understand what he’s saying.
I am in the same situation, having recently found out my own husband has been having affairs.
The responsibility of the affair in both men belongs to them 100 percent.
The responsibility of miscommunication, not enough time to talk and sorting out old arguments is ours.