worried about my relationship

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-30-2005
worried about my relationship
14
Fri, 05-06-2005 - 7:48am

Hi everyone, I have an issue & I am hoping that you can give me some advice. My dh has a stressful job. He works long hours and lately when he comes home he is very stressed. He isn't happy in the evenings a lot of the time and he doesn’t really want to talk or connect with me personally. Last night he hinted around that he wanted sex from me.... I did not want to participate because I felt like I had had not received any personal attention earlier in the evening. If I do not feel close to him on a personal level, it is really hard for me to want to have sex. This morning was even worse, he was in a very bad mood, and I think it stems from me turning him down last night, as well as not wanting to go to work. Am I right in withholding sex on nights that I do not feel is he is "there for me"? Or is this just adding to the stress, and driving us further apart?

I should also mention that he works really hard so that I am able to stay home with our 4 children. It is something that I am really thankful for. I realize that my job is much more rewarding than his, but I am also tired and sometimes stressed at the end of the day.

Help me out guys! I do not want to turn into an old married couple that never has sex or a personal connection. Men & women’s opinions would be great. Thanks!

~Kat

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iVillage Member
Registered: 02-08-2005
Fri, 05-06-2005 - 8:39am

Hi Kat,
I have worked in highway construction for 33 years which means that there are many times I go to work before sunrise and do not get home until it is dark. Stress is there a quite a lot of the time. Often I just get to eat supper (cold) and then go to bed. To have sex withheld because of the hours that I work which do not permit me to spend a lot of time on being romantic would upset me. I do my best to take care of my family and I think they understand the situation but they do not get much of my attention from spring until winter. Just my opinion and it may not fit with your partner's situation.

Best wishes!

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-08-2004
Fri, 05-06-2005 - 9:02am

First of all, the stereotype of *old married couples* who never have sex or do not connect on a personal level

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Fri, 05-06-2005 - 9:23am

hello Kat,


1st wanted to say welcome to SMS! so happy you are here!


about your post.....


I have to agree with Tish! being old and married doesn't EQUAL no sex life! LOL! In our 25yr of married life I have 'never' just withheld sex just 'because'....we have always talked it out. Now there were those 'few' times at 3am that I just moved his hand away! LOL! no need to talk about why then! LOL!


I was a stay home mom for 10yrs and my DH worked '2' jobs so I could. it was hard and he worked many many hours and was tried and very stressed. But making love made him feel better and took some of that stressed away. PLUS it brought us closer...even if I didn't get a "O" out of it atleast I was close to him and loving him and thats what matters!


Right now we are in a 'very very' stressful time as my MIL is dying from brain cancer. We spend 99% of our time and engery on her. Yes our sex life has gone DOWN and DOWN (from 3-4 times a week to none for 2 weeks)....but turning him down because he doesn't 'give' me what I think I need...no way!! we connect during our loving and that what makes our life sooo great! We made love this weekend for the 1st time in almost 2 weeks...yes it was fast and hot but NO I didn't get a "O" but DH needed to feel me and to love on me so I gave it my all 'for' him.


yes I know this is somewhat different than what your going thru but yet its still the same...it is STRESS and it cause alot of trouble in the best of marages!!


again welcome to SMS!!

memeblue

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-09-2005
Fri, 05-06-2005 - 1:10pm

>>>Am I right in withholding sex on nights that I do not feel is he is "there for me"? Or is this just adding to the stress, and driving us further apart?<<<

There's not really an easy answer to this. On the one hand, I don't believe in witholding sex (or more often, having sex witheld from me), but on the other, I don't believe in forcing my spouse to have sex with me either. I think in general, we should try to go along with it if it means making our SO happy, even if we have to somewhat compromise our own potential satisfaction.

There's no question in my mind that witholding sex will add to the stress. I can't speak for all men, but for me, I like to use sex as a stress reliever if times are really tough, and having sex witheld would not only keep me in a high stress state, but would also start to build resentment I me as well.

IMO, someone has to take charge and maintain the relationship, and as the less stressed spouse, that has to be your job. It can easily get away on you if you're not careful (FWIW I'm at home with 3 kids under 7).

Cheers,

Boddies

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-16-2004
Fri, 05-06-2005 - 1:36pm

Hi kat,

I know where you are coming from. My DH works hard and brings his job home w/ him most days. I am a WAHM and communicate w/ my clients mostly through email, so other than hello/goodbye to the preschool teachers, DH is very often the only adult I talk to on many days. And it hurts if he's not in a talking mood in the evenings.

Some possibilities:
1. Men sometimes need sex to feel connected (in addition to relieving stress). Perhaps if you go along w/ it and make love, he'll be relaxed enough AFTER for some talk/cuddle time for you. DH and I sometimes will have a drink and real conversation AFTER. (I know that's a lot to ask if you have kids and by the time you're in bed together it is actually past both your bedtimes, too)

2. Date nights just don't work for us very often, but we try once a week to eat dinner alone--my kids have pizza and a movie together in the family room and DH and I have wine and candles w/ dinner. Having this connection on a regular basis makes me feel like I'm having meaningful grown-up conversation and gives him a chance to unwind w/o kids to deal with. Those nights are usually VERY good nights.

Hope this helps.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-30-2005
Fri, 05-06-2005 - 2:35pm

Thank you for your post, it was very helpful. I am SO SORRY that I labeled "old married couples" like that. I hope you realize that I meant... stuffy, distant couples that fight all the time or have nothing in common. I have read many of your & gigi's posts and I really respect you guys. Again, sorry for using the wrong wording on that, I hope I am as happy as you guys at 25 years of marriage.

Thanks again,
Kat

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-30-2005
Fri, 05-06-2005 - 2:40pm

You remind a lot of my guy. I think you are very right, withholding sex is making it worse. I feel like crap now. But, all I do is go from here & try to make it up to him. Thank you for your honest opinion. You guys are really the best!

~Kat

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-04-2003
Fri, 05-06-2005 - 3:03pm

Kat -


I firmly believe in not withholding sex from your spouse. That is biblically rooted for me. But, it's not for everyone. I can totally understand how you would not want to extend yourself to him when he hasn't extended himself to you but that can create a dangerous circle pattern and drive you further apart.


My suggestion would be at a nonromantic, non-you-haven't-been-there-for-me time, to let him know how/why/when you feel these things and it might help him understand his action, your reaction and maybe that can be the first step toward change.

MadsenFallSiggy3.png picture by jenniemadsen1

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-30-2005
Fri, 05-06-2005 - 3:34pm

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When you say that do you mean that you NEVER tell him no? I am so confused. If I really don't feel like I am in the mood, should I just "fake it" until the mood is real? Or should I tell him no? I am really not trying to be argumentative... I truly want the answers. Thank you for bearing with me.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-04-2003
Fri, 05-06-2005 - 3:58pm

I'm sorry!! I should have been more specific.


My DH and I try and differentiate b/w I feel slighted by you therefore your punishment is no sex, and I am tired can we do it later?

MadsenFallSiggy3.png picture by jenniemadsen1

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