iVillage Member
Registered: 05-29-2013
Wed, 05-29-2013 - 3:19pm


Hello - this may not be the right place to post this but I figured since you have been through this you can give some kind of perspective. I have been married for 17 years. Life is good for the most part except in the bedroom unfortunately. I love my wife dearly but she is not paying enough attention in that area - and it is not a matter of her knowing that she is lacking because it had been a point of contention for years and I have reached my end.

My complaint in particular is variety and initiative. 

From the beginning she been rather conservative and it took a long time to basically get her out of missionary and to get her to express herself as she was being pleased. When I would bring up variety, she would feel as if I wasn't being satisfied and thought the sex wasn't good; to which I would reply - that wasn't the case I just thought we should add SPICE is all. That was always a big issue. Now let me say - we have 2 kids who are in high school now - I understand the toils of parenthood and balancing work with home life. I am NOT the kind of guy who comes home and expects her to do everything. I cook and clean just as much she does if not more. Why? Because i feel like home duties are not gender specific, if it needs to be done, then it needs to be done regardless of who does it. 

We had in the past, frequent conversations about a men and infidelity. We have had friends with unfaithful spouses and I used to half joke that if a man is not getting what he wans at home he will go out and find it - not realizing I would be in that situation my self. 

I have lurked on these boards for years and read a lot of your situations and was convicted not to go through with anything because of the pain you all have been through. So I decided to talk it out with her. her reply is usually she doesn't know what to do to make me happy. However on MANY, MANY occasions I have told her things - exact things for example: sex on Monday mornings usually makes my week a lot better (believe it or not, when that has happened - my weeks REALLY were good - lol). Now I don't expect it every Monday but how about at least ONE Monday out of the month, is that asking too much? I have talked to her about lingerie, I have told her about specific panty styles that I enjoy on her, so at one point (after she got fed up with hearing me complain about the older panties she wore consistently), she goes out and buys a bunch of panties - most of which were not what I described. Let me stop fpr moment so I do not seem like a control freak - lol because that is not what this is. This was in response to her asking me specifically what do I like. 

She also asks in terms of specific acts she can do - I will tell her - he may do them once or twice then she goes back to the same ole same ole. Even when I do NEW things with her - she LOVES it or at least gives the appearence to - she will usually cum much harder then "normal" sex. I dont think she is faking because I can usually feel her throbbing down below and she becomes quite wet. Sorry if I am being to graphic but am trying to be PC :)

And generally I have to initiate - which makes me feel like this area is not important to her even though it is too me. Again please don't think that this is one sided and I expect her to do EVRYTHING just for me. I am the kind of guy who gives back rubs for no reason, the guy who buys roses - for no reason. The guy who will download and create a playlist for her iphone of some of her favorite music just because. The guy to make breakfast for her to have in bed etc. Well those are hings that I used to do on a regular basis until she realy stopped paying attention in the bedroom. I still do them from time to time but FAR less frequently but she will complain about it sometimes but I laugh to myself - if we compromised then we could BOTH be happy.

So that brings me to where I am now where I am EXTREMELY SEXUALLY FRUSTRATED. I have found myself frequenting strip clubs during the day. looking into group chats etc.

I know I shouldn't do it but I feel like I have no other options - counseling won't work as my wife NEVER admits ANY wrongdoing in this. When we discuss it - it is always turned around to me in some sort of way - or she will say she be better with things and it changes for a week or two then back to how it was. Without being to graphic, a perfect example is oral, I have told her on MANY occasions how much I LOVE IT. Take a wild guess how many times I got it last year? a WHOPPING 6 times!!!! 6 times in a 12 month calendar year - unbeliveable. So far this year - it has been 3 times and the year is almost half gone. And the crazy thing, out of those 3 times only ONCE was it initiated by her. The other 2 times and most of last year was in response to me going down on her first then she would feel the urge to return the favor - but there were more times when I would do it for her - she would cum then ask me, "what do you want me to do?" unbeliveable!!!!! Should I really have to tell her?! If you have to contantly tell someone how to please you after 17 years or let's say even 5-10 years of marriage - something is NOT right.

So I have met someone in a similar situation as I am. We have only talked and had lunch ince but nothing happened - just talked.

I guess my question is - ladies or men - what do you do in this situation where your NEEDS are not getting met and you have CLEARLY explained what you NEED and would like?

rom what I have read, most you did not know what was lacking and caused your spouse to go off to be unfaithful. If you had known like this situation would it have helped and woulf you have done hings differently?

I value the groups input - thanks for reading if you made it to the end - lol



iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Wed, 05-29-2013 - 7:15pm

I think this is probably the wrong board if you are going to look for someone who is going to tell you that it's ok to cheat on your wife.  I do sympathize w/ you for being unsatisfied, but it's like with any other major disagreement in a marriage--you have to decide whether it's enough to get divorced over, hoping that you'll find someone else who is more compatible with you--or to stay in the marriage and realize that it's probably not going to get any better.  Having an affair isn't the answer.

You might also try the mistmatched libidos board to see what other people in your situation say.

Avatar for xxxs
Community Leader
Registered: 01-25-2010
Wed, 05-29-2013 - 8:04pm

  Let me say your communication is poor.  When she asks what you want her to do tell her!  Is that so hard?  Another thing If you want to have a new lover then do it.  Sitting on the fence is childish.  Do or not do.  No you W will never be the uninhibited wild woman you want her to be.  But you had 17 years to train her and failed.  Go out find one who is on your wave lenght so you do not bother her nymore and see how that goes but tell her before and  do not lie.


Avatar for Kendahke1
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-09-2012
Thu, 05-30-2013 - 8:19am

you may want these boards:

Their spin is more to what you're talking about than here. This board would be for where your wife would come should you not apprise her of your intentions.

I would only say to you to put your resolution to her as you did us and let her know that that is the course you will be taking... I can't say that she won't do what she needs to do until you're off your resolution, so there is that. Of course, you could say that unless she accompanies you to therapy and really invests herself in it, that this is the course you intend upon taking, although it probably would be prefarable for you to just divorce her first and move on.  Either way, she's going to get hurt--might as well retain your honor and ability to look yourself in the mirror and know you treated in the proper way in this.

Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Thu, 05-30-2013 - 11:50am

Colin, I was mostly thinking, "Sounds like he's done everything he's supposed to do" until I got to this:  "From what I have read, most you did not know what was lacking and caused your spouse to go off to be unfaithful."  What makes you think the people on this board *caused* their spouse to be unfaithful?  You lost any possible sympathy there.  People cheat for all kinds of reasons.  Assuming the spouse is always to blame is flat-out wrong.  It's also incredibly insulting to the people you just asked for advice.

Kendahke is dead on.  You have to look at this as you would look at any other marital problem.  If your wife were gambling, an alcoholic, abusive, a lousy mother, cheating on you, incapable of coping with life, unloving in her emotions as well as her sex life, etc., what would you do? 

The normal thing to do is ask her to go to counseling with you so you can see if it is possible to work it out.  If she won't go, then you have to tell her her lack of interest in sex may mean the end of your marriage.  If you can't resolve the issue either with counseling or alone, then you ask yourself if you can stay married to someone under those circumstances.  If not, then you divorce.  If yes, then you figure out how to behave like the married person you are.  It may mean your sex life is never satisfying.  Well, who said we were supposed to get perfection in a marriage??  Are you always and in every way the man she wants YOU to be?  Why does your desire for sex trump everything else in your marriage?

Caveat:  I'm not a betrayed spouse (at least not that I know of :)).  Nor do I think honesty is always the best policy if it's going to seriously hurt a marriage, as I've told friends who had one-time indiscretions. 

However, what you are proposing is to purposefully go off and have a relationship with someone in a way that you promised your wife you would not when you married her.  If she simply cannot fulfill that part of the marriage with you, and sex is something you are willing to trade your marriage for, then end your marriage.  Or put on your big boy pants and recognize that marriage is between two people who aren't perfect.  Her lack of interest in sex does not make her less of a person deserving of respect and honesty.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2010
Thu, 05-30-2013 - 6:22pm

It sounds like your wife came to the marriage with some issues about sex, which did not magically resolve over the years. Have you and she ever discovered why she has the attitudes towards sex that she does?

My advice is to first talk frankly with your wife, to tell her that your sexual frustration is at a tipping point and you need to do something. I suggest begging her to accompany you to counseling. You stated that counseling would not work because she never admits any wrongdoing in the situation. I thought that "wrongdoing" is an interesting choice of words because I don't see this as a case of anyone being right or wrong, its just what it is and requires both of you to change it.

An experienced counselor will most likely have some sessions with each of you privately to hear the individual POVs then bring you together to get you to really hear each other, and to come up with ways to get needs met.

Its possible that your wife would say that she can accept you getting your sexual needs met outside of the marriage but you should tread carefully. Thinking that she can accept it, and actually living with that reality are two very different things. A counselor could help her to work through that scenario also.

If you and your wife cannot reach a point of agreement about frequency and variety of sex, and you cannot live without getting your needs met by a partner, IMO ending the marriage would be preferable to having an affair(s). An affair could really open a Pandora's Box in a number of areas: you developing an attachment for your AP, or bringing home a STD, an unintended pregnancy, etc. Your wife may say she won't have sex with you any more after you've gone outside the marriage. Your kids are old enough to see a lot of what's going on, you are modeling the behavior of a husband, and presumably want them to value fidelity in relationships and to respect you as a man of integrity. I'm sure you can think of more difficulties.

I hope that you feel better after venting here and that you are able to work things out with your wife.

Avatar for slah54
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-04-2012
Sun, 06-02-2013 - 8:39am

I think it would be a real shame to throw away 17 years together by having an affair.

You said you suggested she buy some new panties, but she bought the wrong ones.  Perhaps you could surprise her with several new pairs, of the kind you like.  Ask her to model them for you.  Tell her how good she looks in them.  Maybe ask if you can take a photo of her.  Suggest she wear them all day, so that  you can think of her in them.  Give her a  hot kiss as you leave that day.  Send her a text message telling her you're can't stop thinking of her in those sexy new panties.

Are you affectionate with each other?  Do you kiss her every day as you leave for work?  Hug when you get home?  Touch her as you walk by?

How does she feel about herself?  Lots of women have self-esteem issues, weight issues (in our minds, anyway).  Perhaps suggest going for a nightly walk together.  Hold hands.  Exercise releases endorphins, which is a good thing.  

My husband and I recently celebrated our 30th anniversary.  We have had dry spells, but have come through it  successfully, and the sex is good.  It's worth the effort.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-29-2013
Sun, 06-02-2013 - 4:20pm

Hi Remdamma,

i think you are right. She was really conservative in the beginning - missionary was the regular mode - and it took years to get her to doggy style - 

She believes she was molestated as a child. Although she can't clearly recall a time - she has two older sisters who were molestated by their dad.

In terms of counseling - when I mentioed the wrong doings - I meant she takes very little responsibilty in anything that she does wrong - please believe me I am not saying I am perfect but if I make a mistake I can own it and discuss and work at not making that mistake again - but for her when there something that needs to be corrected it always gets flipped around to the other person and something that they are doing. So the conversation always goes on some wild tangent that turns out to be a waste a time so if she does that with me - I can only imagine how bad it would be in front of someone else who will hold her accountable.

There is NO WAY she would allow a relationship outside - which makes complete sense and I understand but I feel as though I am in a corner - We talked about this for about the last 15 years - same pattern things change for 1-2 weeks then go back 

Thanks for the comments/advise!

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-29-2013
Sun, 06-02-2013 - 4:24pm

Xxxs - 

Thanks for the reply! I am not sure how I have poor communication if I have told her specifically what she can do, whether it is specific positions, specific acts - specific types of panties. I have even told her to pick magazines in the grocery stores - Cosmopolitan or red book as they always have a section on sexual things to do that even I will read sometimes while waiting to make a purpose.

How much better can one communicate if they are being specific?

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-29-2013
Sun, 06-02-2013 - 4:42pm

Hi Slah,

You are right it would be shame to throw it away. Maybe I am wrong in this but I was specific with what I like. Which are the thong lke panties with the thin string - not lace not panties that cover most of the butt. And she buys almost the complete opposite - lol and on top of that this waaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyy after we had the conversation. I have asked her about wearing scenting lotions when around the house and pariculary when coming to bed. She hardly does that but will take a bottle of it to work or put some on on her way out the door to work or use her spray when going to work. So it makes me think 1 of 2 things: 1) She doesn't really care what I say or 2)It is not all that important even though we have had several conversations about it.

I used to send her text messages daily - i had this cool app that had several love messages to choose from. It got to the point where it seemed that wasn't doing anything so I stopped a while and I had to switch phones and lost the app and could never find a good one that wasn't extremely cheesy.

And she does seem to have weight issues - BUT I LOVE HER FIGURE - I have told her that a lot over the years. She even has had several of her co-workers tell her that they wish they had her figure but it doesn't matter - she still feels the same way and so I do not bother telling her any more.

I understand dry spells - been through QUITE A BIT - but it seems like we don't have to have as many if the spouse is beeing specific about which of their needs are not being met.

Congratulations on 30 years!

I think I may have reached my tipping point unfortunately - and not sure how to proceed

thanks for the reply!

Avatar for slah54
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-04-2012
Sun, 06-02-2013 - 5:13pm

I am sorry to hear that things seem so hopeless.  But the effort to improve can't  be all one-sided, and it sounds like you are really trying.

I have one other thought, and this is based on my own experience.  I have always  been a  very shy person.  Up until about 5 years ago, I would never willingly go into a lingerie store to buy myself something sexy.  I was too embarrassed, and felt I wasn't worth the effort.  Perhaps that is why she didn't buy what you suggested.  (Fortunately, my husband loves lingerie and he has always bought me nice things.  Now, of course, I shop with him and we have a great time.)

I can only suggest you be perfectly honest with her.  Tell her you cannot live without sex and that if things don't change, you will be looking elsewhere.  Give her some time to come around, and then do exactly what you said you would do - either leave her or find someone for sex.

Maybe a shakeup is just what is required.