Dr. West  





Impotent Husband Sparks Affair

From e-mail 

"Sexless marriages" are the reason for many divorces.  It used to be just the men who had this complaint, but more and more it's the women.

       I've been married to my husband for five years. In the beginning our sex life was okay, but as time went on it kept cooling and dwindling. At the same time my interest in, and need for sex seemed to increase.

Then it got so that whenever I would try to get him interested in sex, he would act like it was an imposition, or remind me how long his day had been.

I'm not overweight or ugly, and other guys seem interested in me.

My husband does put in long hours at his work, and I can't complain about not having material things.

But that doesn't make up for the lack of closeness that I used to feel when we made love, or the rejection I'm now feeling.

I've talked to him about this and all he does is apologize and say, that even so, he loves me.  I have no doubt about that.

Now I'm having my first affair, and it's wonderful to feel that close to a man again  -- someone who gets really gets turned on with me.

After being rejected and doing without sex for so long, it's like now I can't get enough of it.

My husband doesn't know, of course, but I think he likes the fact that I'm not pushing him for sex any more. At the same time I feel really bad about what I'm doing.

I've read about open relationships and hotwives on your site, and I'm wondering if should bring up this possibility to my husband. I think having that freedom would be the answer to my problem.

Dr. West responds:     

    Or, depending on his response, it may be the start of even greater problems.

"Sexless marriages" are the reason for many divorces.  It used to be the men who had that complaint, but, more and more, it's women. (The reasons are explained on this site.)

In order to gage the reaction of the spouse, some people start this conversation by bringing up someone who is having an affair or has an open marriage. If your spouse instantly condemns both as being terrible, you probably don't want to go any further.

If he says he also knows about open marriages, or sanctioned affairs, and you can get him to talk about his feelings on the matter, you may be able to slowly and carefully open the door to what you want.

You should also be prepared to grant him the same freedom, which, in some cases will provide the necessary motivation.

Even, so, as I repeatedly point out on this site this is very dangerous territory.

Although I don't recommend it, women (and men) who are having affairs have been known to set their spouse up with a safe, non-threatening person of the opposite sex  -- after which it's much more difficult for them to condemn their spouse for their affair -- if, or maybe when, it becomes known.

In the meantime, you are putting your marriage at risk and if you value that it seems best to break off your affair.

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