An LL's Vent (Long)

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Registered: 02-23-2007
An LL's Vent (Long)
Fri, 02-23-2007 - 2:20am

Sorry, this is pretty long, but I really just need to vent. I've tried talking to my friends, but they're all HL's and think I'm nuts. But this stuff has really been weighing on my mind lately.

I'm 26, almost 27, and I have been with the same guy off and on for 9 years. We went out for 3 1/2 years when we first met, then were just friends or casually dated ever since. We've been seriously back "on" again for about 6 months, and it's been wonderful. He's is the greatest guy on earth. I could hardly ask for more. I truly believe we could spend the rest of our lives together, except for one problem---I'm a LL and he's a HL.

Now, I know I personally have issues that cause my LL. First off, I find sex itself PAINFUL. I've talked to my boyfriend and my doctor about this, and my doctor offered my some helpful advice, and my bf is more than happy to try anything I think will help (even some strange positions).

Second, I find sex, well, icky. I'm a very clean person. For example, I won't eat food with my fingers, and I don't like gardening because I get dirty. I'm almost (but not quite, according to my dr.) OCD about cleanliness. So you can just imagine how I feel about sex. It's sticky and slimey and sweaty, and all around yucky. This, I have not told my bf, because he would take it personally, and it's not him. It's just a hang up I have, and that I would have with any person.

Third, I'm a medical student, and I find it very hard to see the body as something sexy and sensuous. I see it as the machine I've always learned it to be. It's just groups of cells working together. Obviously, that makes it quite difficult to get turned on.

(These have all been issues in other relationships that I've had, not just with my current bf.)

But the final, and biggest, problem I have is my bf himself. He can never see or talk to me without bringing sex into it. The literal minute we are alone, his hands are up my shirt and down my pants, and his tongue's down my throat. It would be really nice to get some soft kisses, maybe a back rub, just hold hands. Something besides diving right in. And it would be nice if he waited a little bit, rather than pawing at me like some animal the moment he sees me. And everytime we talk on the phone, he starts talking about having sex with me--what he wants to do to me, what he wants me to do to him. Then he asks me what I want to do, and he gets offended when I say I want to change the subject.

My bf swears that he only acts like that because he loves me so much and wants to be with me, and he wants us to share ourselves with each other. In a way, I believe him, because he doesn't sleep around or anything, but part of me knows it's just an excuse for his lack of self control. He says I should feel flattered that I turn him on so much, and I do, but at the same time, I feel aggravated that he can't seem to control himself.

So often I feel like I am just some big blow-up doll to him. More than once, I've just laid there and let him do what he wants so he'll quit whining. On some lucky occasions, the TV's actually been on so I had something to distract me.

Plus, I get really tired of knowing we're going to have sex every time we see each other. To me, it's like seeing a movie every time you get together. Yes, watching a movie is fairly enjoyable, and yes, it's a different general movie each time, but it's still watching a movie. I get tired of watching movies. Even if we do something else, like go out for a nice dinner, or even something goofy like playing mini golf, we still end by "watching a movie." Well dang it, sometimes I'm just not in the mood to watch another movie!

We've talked about this stuff on several occasions, and each time he eases off for a while, but eventually goes right back to his old ways. And when he does ease off, he makes a huge deal out of it. He says, "See? I behaved myself tonight. I didn't try to do anything. Did you notice?" Well whoopty-freakin'-do. So you have an ounce of self control. That's great.

We've talked about living together at some point, but I don't know if that would be better or worse. It could be much better, because we would see each other a lot more, and I don't think even he could keep up his interest in sex THAT much. Right now, we usually only have a chance to see each other once a week or so, so I can kinda understand why he is so "excited" every time I see him. On the other hand, if he did keep it up, my life would be a living you-know-where. So I don't know.

I just get so tired and so frustrated with the whole situation. This is exactly the reason that we broke up 5 1/2 years ago. He's the same age as me--I thought guys eventually outgrew this kinda stuff! He's acting like he's still 16. In every other aspect he's absolutely perfect. I just wonder if this is something we'll ever be able to work through.

Well, sorry this is so long, but thanks for letting me vent. That's all been bottled up for a long time.

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Registered: 01-24-2007
Fri, 02-23-2007 - 7:55am

Hmmm OK, let me get this straight. You see your boyfriend once a week and every week he wants to have sex with you. You know he isnt with anyone else, and you know he loves you. He has no idea that you think sex is icky. You ask him to back off and he does for a while. How long is a while? One day, two dates, three? So that would be he backs off for two or three weeks and then is desperate to have sex with you and he's in his 20's?

You on the other hand think its icky and want to avoid it sometimes. Are you seeking treatment for being borderline OCD? You can go a whole week without seeing him and still not want to have sex with him? You have pain during sex, is it something that will go away completely with treatment or is it something you will have to deal with forever?

These are all factors that have to go into weighing whether the relationship can last for the long haul. Temporary situations can be dealt with. The long term issues that you are dealing with may be different. He also has a right to know about them. OCD can get worse over time, or it can get better. He has every right to know what he is getting into. I understand that you feel like sometimes he is just using you for sex, but if you are in a committed relationship you have to understand that you are his source for sex. If you want to be in a relationship where you are both faithful to each other then you both have to take responsibility for making the sexual aspect of your lives work out. If he cant get what he needs from you he will either cheat, be miserable, or leave. If you cant get the emotional support you need from him, you will either be miserable, leave, or find the emotional support outside your relationship.

So to answer your own questions, you need to figure out the issues unique to your relationship and what the probable outcomes are going to be. Every couple is different, and now is the time for you to figure all of this out, BEFORE the two of you are tied together or forced to stay together because of children and marriage and finances.

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Registered: 07-06-2006
Fri, 02-23-2007 - 9:09am

I could wade deep into this mess and maybe explain a few things. I might a bit later in the day, but for now, let me be a bit more succint:

Do yourself and your boyfriend a favor and walk away now. Whatever else you might think "works" between you, this clearly doesn't and you're just not compatible.

Also . . . a medical student who isn't into the "icky?" What are you gonna do the first time you have to touch a wrinkly 70 year-old scrotum? Medicine is an icky profession so you really ought to de-ick yourself now or find another way to make a living.

Avatar for holdingontoit
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Registered: 02-02-2004
Fri, 02-23-2007 - 9:25am

You need to be 100% honest with your bf. You need to tell him you are never turned on, and that you find sex icky. You need to explain how it ties in to your OCD and how it is unlikely to go away. Then you need to let him decide whether he wants to continue seeing you.

Or you could just dump him so you don't have to be that open and honest with him.

Whatever you do, don't keep up this charade. Don't make it seem like it is the pressure or the timing or that it will turn around sometime. Don't tell him that if he just gives you some space it will work itself out. That is a lie, and you know it. No matter how many dates in a row he agrees to refrain from pushing for sex, you aren't going to be any more in the mood after the "vacation" is over.

If you have any kind of integrity, you will tell him that. If you don't, just tell him you can't stand the shape of his pinky toes and set him free to find someone who can be who he needs her to be.

When you see it coming, duck!

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Registered: 02-21-2003
Fri, 02-23-2007 - 11:48am

Hi there,

I can relate to much of what you said. I almost became a medical student myself. (I'm now a health/medical writer.) I also find sex icky, especially French kissing. I've never been able to get past the notion of a slimy, smelly, bacteria-laden mouth. I'm able to orgasm fairly easily with the right kind of physical stimulation, but I only rarely get "aroused," in the sense of responding physiologically to sexual thoughts or images or nongenital touching. I'm 50 years old and I've always been this way.

Fortunately I found a husband with his own sexual "differences." He's more interested in sexual play than I am, but he doesn't have much physical need for it and has always had trouble getting/maintaining erections (not just with me). I regard our marriage as a very happy one. We cuddle and fondle each other every night, sometimes including penetration, but only have a full-blown sexual session once every few weeks.

My previous husband was HL and I got to the point that I thought of his sexual advances as a personal violation. I don't think I could be happy with a truly HL man.

I hope my experiences will give you food for thought...

Keep posting! LLs are scarce on this board and it's always good to feel understood.


Avatar for cl_elyse449
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Registered: 07-20-2006
Fri, 02-23-2007 - 2:28pm

Hi littleangel,

First and foremost, welcome! I'm glad you made it to our lil' neck of the woods and I to, hope you remain because we do need BOTH sides to this ML situation--LL and HL alike.

Having said that, I do have some questions based on what you posted;

You mentioned that you and your b/f have been "on again, off again?" May I ask why you were "off" and how many times have you two parted ways and gotten back together?

Here are the things you covered;

1. Pain during intercourse; As far as your pain during IC, I can understand the apprehension there if you're thinking to yourself, "this is going to hurt..." I wouldn't want to have sex if it hurt, either. My concern though is that your doctor hasn't explored ALL possibilities as to what is causing this? Granted, I'm NO physician (and this would be excellent for Dr. Z) but I just wanted to point out that while some causes for the discomfort CAN BE emotionally based, some can be physically based. Have you tried looking this up to see what things can cause it? I just read something recently that talked about lubrication being one thing, another thing mentioned a gynecological issue (or several actually) that can cause this. At any rate, it's worth researching.

2. Mild OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder); Are you receiving ANY treatment for this? Have you researched this issue? Our pediatrician calls it "being highly aware." Our 2 yr old ds has issues with certain textures and actually will need extra help to get him to a point where he can eat normal table foods. It's worth looking into and I agree, if you can't get past the "ickies" it's going to make being a doctor challenging. I also agree that your b/f has the right to know this about you. I think I'd just be mindful in my word usage and maybe even enlist the help of a counselor to help you and him to communicate better.

3. Being a med student and not seeing the body as sensuous;

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Registered: 02-23-2007
Fri, 02-23-2007 - 4:06pm

First off, thanks Freelance, it's nice to finally feel understood by someone.

I forgot to say in my original post that my dr. didn't find any physical cause for pain. He says it's probably psychologically related (and I think he's right).

The reason my bf and I usually only see each other once a week is because we are both full time students and we both work (he actually has 2 jobs on top of school--1 part time, 1 full time), and our schedules are completely opposite of each other. So the only time that we know we can get together is either Friday nights or Sunday mornings, depending on the week. It's not that we don't want to see each other more. If one of our classes get cancelled or we have a day off work, we usually try to at least get together for a cup of coffee or something, but that's pretty infrequent. Fortunately, he'll be done with classes this May, but he'll still have to spend next year doing his student teaching, then he'll be done. I, on the other hand, won't graduate nursing school till May of '09, and I have plenty of clinicals that I'll be doing between now and then that will take up my time.

Yes, I know there are still issues that my bf and I need to discuss more. But we can only talk about so much for so long before one of us starts to lose patience. We're both short tempered. We know this. That is, and always has been, our communication style. So when it comes to big issues with lots of stuff to deal with, it takes several communication sessions to work through everything. And we're still working on it.

I realize that he needs to feel loved, and that being in a monogamous relationship right now, I'm his only source of sex. I do. I realize that and understand that. But the pressure he puts on me sometimes just makes me want to scream! More than once when we were first going out, I'd say no, and he'd start to pout like a 4 year old. He turned away from me, turned up the TV, and wouldn't talk to me. I said once, "You're in my house. If you're that upset, you have the option of leaving. I can't. What do you want me to do?" He didn't say anything, just grunted, and after sitting there in silence for over a half hour, he decided to go. Thankfully he's at least been talking to me about our problems now. That's a start. It's just going to take time.

Oh, and as far as ickiness during sex and going into medicine, there are some BIG differences. First off, I don't get grossed out by seeing blood and guts and stuff. That's no big deal. It's actually touching it that I have issues with. (Except for blood. Blood doesn't bother me at all for some reason. I don't know why.) Anyway, when you work in medicine, you're SUPPOSED to wear gloves and goggles and masks and drapes so none of the icky actually touches you. Very different than sex (other than condoms). I'm pretty sure if I came to bed dressed the same way I dress to work on a med floor, my bf would find that a bit odd. Also, if someone throws up on you, or spits on you, or pees on you, or somehow you DO come in direct contact with ickies, you will be grossed out. Talk to anyone in the health profession, they'll tell you the same thing. You can't show the patient that you're grossed out, but you certainly aren't going to enjoy it. And you are expected to immediately go wash up with antimicrobial products. Again, a little different than someone licking your body all over and sticking their tongue down your throat, and you're expected to find pleasure in it. And, there is a completely different mindset when you are working. There is a job to be done. You can help this person, so that's what you do. There is nothing emotional there. You just do it. Just wanted to clear that up.

No, I have not actually been in formal medical school my whole life, but my family raised me in that mentality. That the body is a machine. It works, it breaks, you fix it, it works again. That cycle keeps going until you can't fix it anymore, and then you die. That's that. I've been reading medical books, and books on biology and anatomy and physiology since I could read. So I have had that mentality pretty much my whole life. When I first saw pictures of naked people, I didn't get all turned on. My thoughts were, "Ok, so that's what everything looks like and how it fits together. Alright. Now what I read about how everything works together makes sense." That's just the kind of person I am. And maybe that contributes to my longstanding LL. It's not like my LL just kicked in yesterday. It's something I've had my whole life, as far as I can tell.

As far as getting help for borderline OCD, I am in therapy for several issues that I'd rather not go into (but they really don't have an impact on my sex life). OCD is among the issues, but that is not the most pressing one for me at the moment. I have gotten help for it in the past; obviously that help didn't stick.

Why have my bf and I been on again/off again? Well, we started going out when we were juniors in high school and were together until we started junior year in college. (We never went to the same school.) At that point, we decided we weren't right for each other. He was ready to get married, I wanted to wait until I finished school. (He never did get married.) He wanted kids, I didn't. (I changed my mind on that a couple of years ago.) He was very irresponsible and wanted to "live it up", I was more settled and knew the benefits of being resposible financially and socially. (He has now grown up and realized the same thing.) And, there was the issue of sex, which neither one of us was mature enough to discuss at that time (as illustrated earlier). So we broke up, but remained good friends. We casually dated now and then, but nothing serious. We both wanted to see what else was out there. We each had some more serious relationships with other people in that time, but nothing ever lasted. And we were always drawn back to each other. (It's kinda like the whole Ross & Rachael thing on "Friends".) So six months ago, we talked about it, and we decided to try it once more. We're both in very different places than we were 6 years ago, and we're both different people. But we've stuck by each other the whole time, so our changes are no surprise to each other. In fact, we now have a level of emotional intimacy that we never had 6 years ago. We've grown closer, and we love each other so much. It's just this one thing that stands in our way. And we ARE still talking about it and working on it. It's not like there's an ultimatum dancing around or something. My whole original post was simply because I was frustrated and needed to vent. Just that.

I think that pretty much answered most of the questions that people posted. :-)

Edited 2/23/2007 4:33 pm ET by littleangel770070
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Wed, 02-28-2007 - 3:29am

Just a thought - perhaps it's not just this one 'little' thing that's a problem between you. You say you are both short tempered and have a hard time discussing important issues. That's a problem whether you're discussing your sex life, deciding to buy a house together, or disagreeing over how to discipline your children.

You say when you see each other, he just wants to have sex straight off. Nothing wrong with that. And nothing wrong with your NOT wanting that. The problem is that when you get together, you both feel like you're not getting what you want. When you negotiate and he lays off on the sex for you, does it feel like a mutually satisfying compromise, or is more like a game of tug-o-war?

Instead of looking at the ML as "Can we solve this or not?", look at it as "Let's see how we deal with this challenge." Give it some time and then reflect on how you guys are doing. If it's still a big problem that's causing serious resentment or doubts, then it may be indicating some basic differences in how you deal with things that could cause continued frustrations in your relationship. Don't be afraid to consider that he might not be 'the one' for you. If he is, it will work out, right? But if he isn't, better to figure it out now and move on.