His low testosterone, his blame on me

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-17-2009
His low testosterone, his blame on me
Sun, 05-17-2009 - 2:37am

Sorry, this is kind of long.

- we're in our early 30s
- been married just a few years
- no kids

Started off having FANTASTIC sex. I used to be in awe of how great we connected.

After marriage, it tapered off. To once every 4 months. And when we did, he finished maybe ONCE a year. I'd say in the entire time we've been married, he's "finished" maybe 10 times. He didn't even think it was a problem. It's frustrating because when it never happens, and then when it does and it's just random um pumping that never ends...you start to wonder what happened to your sex life.

It then became how I'm too loud, how i use my nails, how just my random "ohhh that feels good" is weird because he thinks any talking is weird, how it's better if I have matching panties/bra, how he can't get turned on or finish because when I get home from work I change immediately into comfy clothes (i can stay dressed up on occasion, but I get home hours before him and I'm not going to clean the house or do laundry wearing constricting dress pants!)

Eventually, I had an affair and he found out (not sex, but enough activity). We did counseling, etc, and worked through it.

Then we felt we could have kids, well...then the problem of his lack of desire for sex combined with NEVER finishing became more apparent. And he had every excuse in the book for not wanting sex, everything from eating too much ice cream to the weather being too hot. OH and let me add, he could finish on his own easily enough because I would find the "evidence" when I would do laundry. Add that to my self esteem.

I'm pretty cute, when I'm dolled out I get hit on. I exercise, I'm petite, I try to keep myself looking as good as I can for him because I didn't want to "let myself go" after marriage. I get more compliments from random strangers than I do from him...i've told him about this (I'd rather not hint, he's a GUY...i flat out told him that I'd love it if he gave compliments more), but at best I get told that I'm pretty on occasion. I've had a coworker once tell me that all the guys got together and agreed i was one of the hottest girls at work. I've had guys tell me that I'm incredibly sexy, blah blah. I'm not saying this to toot my own horn, rather I have to tell myself this because my own husband doesn't.

FINALLY I snapped and went berserk one night.
He went to see a doctor.
Turns out he had incredibly low testosterone. He was prescribed testosterone,but then that was taken back because of his sleep apnea (he has gained considerable weight since we got married). And really...he doesn't CARE. It doesn't bother him. Nor did he understand why after years of being rejected and told that the problem was ME (matching bra and panties? Come ON), it was HIM. But he still said it was me, even though other than that ONE night i went berserk, i had never leading up to it been anything other than supportive and acted totally cool.

This combined with other issues that naturally build up, I told him I wanted a divorce. I moved out. Was involved with someone who adores me (known him for a long, long time)...he was so complimentary about my sexiness, my looks, he loved having sex with me, I actually once accused him of mocking me because I couldn't believe someone would feel this way.

4 months later, my husband and i agreed to give it another shot. I'm done with counseling, we did it for years and it didn't help (and it was costing us a fortune, money we don't have)

Well, now its becoming an issue again for me. He's told me its pretty clear that I have an incredibly high sex drive and he doesn't. I've tried to gently tell him how important it is that "we" exercise, and how it'll help the testosterone AND sleep apnea issue.

Now when we try anything, I just get annoyed. I'm passionate, and I really get into it, but I feel like I'm 13 kissing a boy for the first time. It's awkward. It's not fun. And the "finishing" situation is still there (I love sex, but 2 hours of random pumping while I'm in a position I don't find comfortable but I stay in because it feels good for HIM and i'm hoping he'll finish isn't my idea of a good time).

I feel incredibly shallow. But I want a CONNECTION. He doesn't get that not finishing and barely having sex anyway takes away from something that you get when BOTH people get their rocks off. I don't want to be the wife who had an affair, I don't want to be the wife who thinks about the guy who DID love being intimate with her...I'm sick of feeling like I'm married to my gay best friend (with a friendship that's failing).

What do you do when on paper things are good? People were FLOORED when i told them I was getting a divorce, they said how it seemed we were perfect and how they were jealous I had a husband who adored me so much. And I know he loves me. I know he wants to be a better husband.

I'm not 20. I don't want to kid myself into thinking the grass is always greener, I know that at my age the pool of single great guys is smaller, I see my single friends having their own dating issues, I feel like I'm an a-hole because my major problem is SEX when tons of my friends would kill for this kind of marriage.

When do you decide its not enough?
Oh, and he also told me he didn't want me to have a vibrator because it would make him feel bad (I do have one, which i had to secretly get, but now i feel guilty using it)...he told me i should learn to use my hands (um, not the same, at least for me!).

Sorry for ranting.


iVillage Member
Registered: 02-03-2009
Sun, 05-17-2009 - 8:00am
...the grass is always greener, isn't it?...I mean, the fact that your friends would love to be married to a man that doesn't desire them or treat them as a desirable woman at all...I, for one, think that he's incredibly selfish...I say that because I used to be an incredibly selfish wife who didn't care one iota about my husband or his sexual/emotional fulfillment...I had 9000 reasons why my selfishness was his fault...it wasn't...he simply wanted to be married to the woman that he had married...(of course, we all change...but our changes should redefine our relationships for the better...I think)...the fact that your husband has heard your frustration...has seen your frustration...has heard from a doctor that there is a real medical problem that might be the cause of some of your sexual issues and he won't make the change in order to be able to explore the treatment...the fact that he wants to dictate your sexuality (no vibrator because it will make him feel bad)...all of this screams of selfishness...I would, if I were you...tell him that your sexual needs are not being met...that you feel that you have given him ample 'warning' and that he needs to have his rubber meet the road, so to speak...lose the weight and explore the testosterone treatment and put the effort in to the marriage that he has put into eating and gaining weight or you will be left with two alternatives...1) you will end the marriage 2) you will seek safe sex partners away from home and hopefully you will not become emotionally attached to any of them (I would)...if your girlfriends continue to be so inconsiderately rude while intimating that you are being ridiculous...tell them that unless he straightens up soon, they may get their shot...I think that his inattention to your needs and his own physical health deterioration (apnea because of weight issues) is a sign of a selfish streak that will show itself in a lot of ways as the relationship becomes lengthier...
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-28-2009
Sun, 05-17-2009 - 8:25am

I have some immediate impressions about your post. I'm sorry. My post is all over the map.

we're in our early 30s

This is an important detail. Leaving aside your HL and marriage issues for a second, your fertility has already started to step down. As women, we lose a bit at 30. We lose a lot more at 35. By and large, we bungy jump off the fertility cliff at 40. Marriage counselling may be expensive. Infertility treatments, depending on the course you take, can be out of this world. Let's keep that in the back of our minds as you consider your options.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-17-2009
Sun, 05-17-2009 - 10:39pm
Harmless Bunny:

THANK YOU for the part about the age + fertility. People don't get that...they're like "oh people can have kids in their 40s"...uh yeah with a lot of fertility meds. My odds have already dropped a chunk. I appreciate that I'm not the only one freaking out about that. That's part of the reason I asked for the divorce originally...I don't have time to dick around with life.

Yes, he uses a sleep apnea machine at night. If he lost the weight, he most likely wouldn't need the machine nor would his testosterone be so low. Should his doctor be heavily involved in all of this? Yep. Does my husband care right now to do anything about it? Not really. I think he's "over" it all.

The part I feel personal about re: the masturbation isn't that he does it...it's that he was physically capable of it at all. And I know he needs porn, etc and all that...it's not something i can "help" him with (i've asked for us to watch it together, but he's not down for it). Basically its a minor addiction for him...he doesn't do it because like a regular dude he just wants to get off, he says he does it only when he's depressed and wants to numb himself. I told him he needed to see someone about it,but he says that since then it barely happens (like 1-2x/month), so that's the least of my issues. But...it's on the issue list.

He has NO idea i have the vibrator, he made it clear already that he doesn't want me to have one, so i'm not going to be like "oh hey i've got it just don't walk in on me"...he's like "why would i want you to use something that i should be doing..."...i don't know. It makes no sense to me. He was just very adamant that it would hurt his feelings if i had one.

Exercise: he's not morbidly obese...when we first started dating, he was CUT. He pays for a gym membership every month, he just always has an excuse not to go. when he DOES go with me, he'll run, do weights, etc...and then complain all week about how he pulled something. He was 165 when we met, he's around 210 now. A friend gently tried telling me that she was shocked at how big he's gotten...on some people 210 looks okay, but he's short and not big framed so it's big enough. But he IS capable of working out, he has a gym membership which he refuses to cancel, he knows what exercises to do...even he would be like "uh yeah walking for an hour isn't going to cut it for exercise if i'm going to lose this weight". It's just frustrating when there's so much emphasis on MY appearance...and I have to tiptoe around his.

And you didn't offend me at all :) I figure this time around, we HAVE read marriage counseling books, considered what we went through...I know what *I* did wrong. I can't fix him, but I certainly didn't help. And i'm much, much better with the things that I had problems with. I guess it's just frustrating because he's sort of changed (he actually cleans the floor. And takes the trash out. gasp), but when it comes to conflict he still behaves the same whereas I can keep my cool now and really consider his side (which he then later will say "sorry for flipping out, you're much better during this stuff but I'm not").

Sigh. I think I have my own answer. I just...I don't know...feel like if we had endorphins going wild, if we were flirty, if he came home and just wanted to rip my clothes off I'd feel like our relationship was fun. HE was the one who told me I had a super high sex drive...I thought i was average.


My friends have no idea about this part of my marriage...only like 2 of them. The rest of them just think that I wanted a divorce for other reasons (I'm not sharing the personal XXX part of our lives withthe world if we break up!). So that's why they were shocked...they were like "you guys weren't getting along? We had no idea..."

I really appreciate your input, because I was feeling like I'm the selfish one. I just feel like such a basic part of the relationship is missing...like i seriously get CRANKY as a result. And now like today...we went out to a movie...normally if things were good and fun, I'd doll myself up...today I was like "F*ck it...if he doesn't care, i don't care" so no cute clothes, no makeup...such a bad attitude. But it's like, why bother...he's not going to say I look gorgeous/beautiful/hot/sexy...he might say I look "pretty".

Oh he sometimes says when I get dolled up to go out with my friends "ooohhh lookin' SEXYYYY" (in a joking voice)...i told him that I feel like he's making fun of me when he says that, and when it came up in counseling the counselor was like "Umm there's a difference between LOOKING sexy and just flat out BEING sexy. She needs you to view her as sexy. period".

He was seeing a therapist briefly, and she suggested that we learn to do things like cuddling-only in order to re-establish things..that just pissed me off. I'm not 13. I'm a grown-up. Why do I have to act like I'm a teenager again? And...in reading a book (yeah yeah dr. laura proper care and feeding of husbands...i wanted to know how to fix myself), she says wives need to give their husbands sex without whining about wanting to cuddle without sex is like giving a starving person a plate of food and telling them to just nibble. That's how i feel...maybe if I had sex more often, or at all, then yeah I'd be okay cuddling. But to ONLY cuddle...then it's just frustrating. Plus then if it DOES lead to sex, I ended up feeling like I was a guinea pig for the therapist's suggestions. It was no longer about what *I* wanted...it was 100% for what he needed. There was no 50/50.

Im still upset over the rant that prompted this, how i tried telling him on Friday how it matters to me that he finishes because I've gone YEARS without feeling like we have a connection when we have sex. He said he doesn't have to finish in order to have that connection...no, really, you do.

Damn I'm crying now. It just sucks that my sex life is almost held hostage to him.
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-16-2004
Mon, 05-18-2009 - 9:58am

Why do you tiptoe around his issues? Why are you afraid to be honest with him about your vibrator? You are enabling him by being too weak to speak up for yourself. He's not going to change on his own; you've already established that quite clearly. The only way he'll change is if he's forced to change because YOU change.

Relationships are like dancing on three legs: yours, his, and both. If you change up your steps, he has no choice but to change up his as well. But if you keep dancing to the same steps, he has no reason to change his.

Avatar for holdingontoit
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-02-2004
Mon, 05-18-2009 - 12:26pm

>>>>> It just sucks that my sex life is almost held hostage to him. <<<<<

No it isn't.

When you see it coming, duck!

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-03-2009
Mon, 05-18-2009 - 2:25pm
...excellent post, Hold...
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-28-2009
Mon, 05-18-2009 - 5:11pm

...he's like "why would i want you to use something that i should be doing..."

The sayings "fish or cut bait"

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-21-2008
Tue, 05-19-2009 - 3:29pm

"He has NO idea i have the vibrator, he made it clear already that he doesn't want me to have one, so i'm not going to be like "oh hey i've got it just don't walk in on me"...he's like "why would i want you to use something that i should be doing..."...i don't know. It makes no sense to me. He was just very adamant that it would hurt his feelings if i had one."

Why are you so worried about hurting his feelings? If it was me, I would be waving the thing around in his face, leaving it out for him to "accidentally" find absolutely EVERYWHERE. It's a pointed reminder of his refusal to confront your marital issues. It's PERFECT. Of course, I'm the Queen of passive-aggressive, but at least it would force a conversation about it.

I have to agree with Hold. Tell him that you want children, and you obviously aren't getting any with him. Then leave. Permanently. If anyone asks why, tell them you want children and it's hard to have children when your husband won't have sex with you. And then let HIM answer their questions. You are right, you aren't getting any younger, and it's time for him to stop trying to avoid dealing with his issues if you want children to be part of your life.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-03-2009
Tue, 05-19-2009 - 5:35pm
...excellent post...
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-17-2009
Thu, 05-21-2009 - 11:17am

Oh he wants kids...at one point I had to tell him to STOP telling people that we were trying. It was brutal, because I would get at least once a week someone asking me if I was pregnant (and you can't be nasty to someone who's genuinely asking something in order to be happy for you, and they don't know you've been getting asked by everyone else on the planet), and then I would get the "well girl, you gotta get on it!" from people...

I finally put a massive status on Facebook one day saying "I am NOT pregnant. Stop asking me. If I am, and you don't know, then I'm not telling you now anyway." which amazingly was a big help.

I know I'm making him out to sound like an jerk...if it weren't for this issue, everything else would be fine (not perfect, but I could deal with things a lot easier!).

But i digress...so my point is, he DOES want kids. And when he doesn't "finish", at least 75% of the time it's somehow tied to something I did. At one point I confronted him about how it seems like I'M the problem in his eyes, and he was all "so if there's things that I need in order to enjoy what we're doing, I'm not allowed to ask? How is that fair?"

I also really don't know if I believe this is worth divorcing over...but when it comes down to it, the only difference between this and a friendship is sex. I also don't know if I'm secure enough to believe that I'll find someone else who has as much of the traits in a husband as him (um, minus all the necessary babymaking stuff).

I actually am very appreciative of this forum, because I know in the "real world", most people would say that trying to find a great fantastic guy in your 30s isn't as easy (I met my husband when I was 23), and I have so many fantastic girlfriends who can't find guys who either are interested in them or any working professional with half a pulse would consider marrying/starting a family.

We had sex the other night, and he did finish which made me SUPER happy...but the actual act itself was so-so. Did I just never notice the lack of passion because I was getting it on with someone very passionate while we were separated, or was it always vanilla?

Okay, questions only I can answer...I guess I'm curious to know for everyone else...when they DO get sex, is it "gripping the bedsheets" amazing?