An Open Letter to the Sexually Frustrated Husbands

A lowered libido in mothers certainly isn’t a new concept, and it’s comforting to know that other women share the same experience. But how do we explain this feeling to our partners without bruising egos?

I never thought I’d write about my sex life on the internet, but for the greater good of helping fellow moms who are in a similar situation, I’m going for it.  I’ve learned that parenthood comes with many “I never thought I’d do that” moments (for example, peeing in my kids’ potty in the back of our SUV, while wearing a nursing child).  I’ve also learned that it can feel so comforting and validating to know when you aren’t the only one experiencing something.

But there is also is a science behind a low libido postpartum (or even during pregnancy). It isn’t your fault. It isn’t my fault. It isn’t the baby’s fault.

Ok, well, it’s kind of their fault because a large part of low libido in women postpartum is the fluctuation of hormones.

Once a mother has given birth, her hormones go into a tailspin. If she’s nursing, those hormones are constantly fluctuating, and they will continue to do so for a month or two even after she stops nursing.

Another large part of lack of libido in postpartum women is postpartum depression. Some risk factors to postpartum depression are previous experiences with depression or anxiety, traumatic delivery, and family stressors. Feelings of hopelessness and no longer enjoying past activities are a few signs that we might be experiencing postpartum depression.

Even without postpartum depression, a woman’s feelings about herself postpartum may ring her sex drive down a few notches. You may think she looks more beautiful than ever, but our bodies have changed- and that can be a hard thing to accept. We also aren’t sleeping and are generally not feeling well about our overall look (especially with a lack of showers and clean laundry). The house may have gone to the pigsty as well, and a messy house can cause anxiety leaving us not to want to do anything remotely romantic.

And quite frankly, sex can feel painful postpartum. We just pushed a baby out of our vagina or had our stomachs cut open. The last thing we want sometimes is something else going back in. Painful sex, if happening six weeks or more postpartum, should be examined by a doctor.

When push comes to shove (see what we did there?), low libido in women postpartum doesn’t mean we don’t love you and it doesn’t mean we don’t want to have sex with you. It just means we are in a weird space- and believe us, we don’t like it either. So in an attempt to offer solidarity to the other mamas experiencing low libido out there, I’m writing a letter to those awesome men in our lives who are feeling a little…”blue.”  🙂

Dearest Husbands and Partners,

We’ve created these amazing little humans, who are basically our love in walking, talking form.  So cool and awesome!  We couldn’t have done it without you!  Thanks for the greatest gift ever- motherhood.  You probably never expected your wife to find another love of her life…especially one who’s shorter, balder, and drools a lot more than you.  But when we gave birth and experienced the heart-bursting, breathtaking love that comes with sharing our body and looking into the eyes of that tiny person we created, it happened.

Our hearts have the ability to give boundless love and as our family grows, our love multiplies.  It’s true – you did have our total heart and soul when it was just us.  But when that first baby took his first breath, his little soul crept into your body and took their portion back.  Being someone’s very life force – the person they depend on, feed from and cling to for dear life is very physical.  Sure, we used to be up for fooling around all the time:  morning, night, in silly places that later gave us a funny story to look back on. And we celebrated our love frequently and carefree.  But things aren’t exactly the same now.

Our bed is no longer just “ours,” and we don’t seem to have the time these days to lounge about lazily, taking our time to enjoy each other like we used to.  Of course, bed-sharing doesn’t mean we can’t have an exciting sex life –  I mean, who needs a bed? We know you’re up for it anytime, any place.  But are we?  Some of us – yes!  Bring it on – especially in the morning or afternoon.  Some of us might find that we’re in the mood late at night when little people are sleeping, toys are put away, and the house is cleaned up.  And, just as normal, there are those of us who have reached our “touch threshold” for the day and have no interest in anything more than conversation and cuddles.

Please be sure to read this next sentence very carefully:  This does NOT mean we don’t love you and don’t think you’re the most handsome guy in town.  In fact, we do have fleeting thoughts at random times during the day of kissing you (and sometimes even an erotic dream here and there).  But by the time the chance arises to…make something else arise…we’re ready to collapse, relax and not. be. touched. by. anyone.

We never thought we’d speak those words to you, darling husband.  But a few kids and several years of breastfeeding later, the sentence was spoken.  It sounded crushing and caused a lot of guilt (which is a frequent visitor to us), but not totally surprising.  You don’t have little people sharing your body.  You couldn’t possibly know the feeling of not wanting to be physical with the one you love.  You say we prance around in our black yoga pants, looking hot and making you want us more.  I assure you – it is not our intention to lead you on and make you crazy (but we guess it’s good to know that it doesn’t take much effort to impress you).  We realize that our libido may be suppressed, but yours sure isn’t.

This time in our lives won’t last forever.  Our children won’t always need and want us moms in such a physical way.  This is a season in our story, a fleeting moment in the grand scheme of our beautiful life.  There will be years of dating, flirting and rolling around in the sheets- just the two of us- in our future.  Our hormones will eventually level out and our libidos will someday rise to your level (watch out!).  We totally appreciate your understanding and patience.

We were thinking- there might be some simple things we could try to keep our connection- maybe a weekly date night on the couch to watch a favorite tv show together?  You could try that old yawning-arm-over-the-shoulder trick, and I could try relaxing and letting you put your arm around me.  Maybe we could even try to make out sometime, like we used to in those early days of dating when we felt tingly butterflies encircling our stomachs (the ones we knew before baby kicks).  We adore you, we respect you, and we are thrilled to share this incredible journey of parenthood with you.  Hang in there, babe – those little people who have stolen our hearts will give a little back at a time and allow you to have their mom back someday.

With all our hearts (oh, minus the parts stolen by our offspring),
Your Loving Wives

218 thoughts on “An Open Letter to the Sexually Frustrated Husbands”

    1. Hi Alex!

      That totally made my day. 🙂 My husband didn’t like it…… and I do understand why… but I’m glad to be able to bring light to how many moms feel sometimes. 🙂


      1. Dear Sarah,
        I get that you’re exhausted – been there, done that. However, what you’re doing to your marriage, to your husband, yourself and your family w/your exhaustion is seriously destructive. I’ve been there and done that too. Guess what? My marriage collapsed and my children were irreparably hurt.

        Do Not make your marriage a power struggle between your needs and your husband’s. Oh, the children’s needs? Mainly, what they need along w/clothing, food and shelter are two parents who actively love and respect each other. Actively, not theoretically, not later when the children are grown – Now. Do you truly want your husband to become a beast of burden for you and the children? Do you truly want to become a beast of burden for your children? I hope not.

        So, what to do w/your exhaustion? Get help with your children so that you can have time w/your husband. How to get help? Use your imagination – you know, the same one you use to anticipate every single one of your children’s wants. Only now apply it to the needs of your marriage.

        Your husband mainly gets his affectional needs met via sex. Yup, it’s like that arm around your shoulder while watching a movie for you. Your arm around his shoulder isn’t going to cut the mustard for him. Why? Because you married a man and that’s how men are made. And contrary to what women have been mis-taught, his natural design isn’t defective. And our’s is not superior to his. As his needs are met, he’s going to be ready, willing and able to meet your needs.

        So Sarah and all you other mothers reading this: Put on your thinking caps and do what you need to do for your marriage. When you do that, you’ll be giving your children the best gift you can possibly give them: Your good marriage.

        1. I agree with the response above. Look- I’ve been a stay-at-home mom for 8 years. I have 2 kids just like the author. My husband and I have been married 10 years and we have sex alot. We love having sex! I read this blog and I identify with your exhaustion (I also struggled with Ulcerative Colitis for many of those years which at times made sex a little painful) but I still found time for sex. Sex is important for a man (and some of us women actually enjoy it too 🙂 ) so it’s really not fair for you to cite all these excuses. Sorry to be so harsh- but that’s what they are. Your husband was there before the kids and he’ll hopefully be there after the kids. But if you’re not meeting his needs, chances are he’ll get them met elsewhere. That’s just the reality of it. You can say men are pigs and whatever else mean thing you want to- but I know that if my husband is not caring for me emotionally then I find a listening ear from other men. We all have needs, and while it is understandable to go through difficult times where those needs are not being met- it is not understandable to make that the story of your marriage and to be ok with it. When I read your blog I honestly thought you had like 8 kids. Then I read that you only have 2!!!!!! Are you kidding! You should have plenty of time for sex. I hope I don’t hurt your feelings, but your husband needs a voice too!

          1. Seriously ladies? Have you misread the article? It’s not just about being exhausted (though that is, of course, part of it). It’s being “touched out.” I’m actually very happy for you that you’ve never experienced this. It’s frustrating, sad, and brings alltheguilt. But it’s real. And just because you’ve never experienced it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.

            I don’t have sex with my husband not because I’m exhausted. I don’t have sex with my husband because I don’t want to. I don’t. The thought of sex makes me cringe. Do I still love my husband? Of course! Do I want to leave him for another man? No way! Am I sexually attracted to him? Not right now. Am I sexually attracted to someone else? Nope.

            For some women, nursing babies simply makes them asexual. I’ve tried…I’m on my second baby now and believe me, I’ve tried. I’ve gone through the “there’s something wrong with me” phase, and at this point, I’ve learned to accept nature’s design…mammals, specifically the great apes, are not meant to breed when they’re nursing young. We’re meant to be 100% there for our babies, and our bodies don’t understand that we’re trying to maintain this unnatural monogamous relationship. Our bodies don’t care that we need to “save our marriage.” The only thing our bodies know is that there is a miniature human depending on us for its life, and so our bodies say NO to ovulation, NO to arousal, NO to lubrication, and NO to sex.

            I’m sorry, but no one gets to dictate how and when I do my “wifely duty” (gag). My husband is frustrated, for sure. And I’m frustrated, too! But we communicate and he understands that one day, our sex life will be more than the occasional hand job and he loves both me and our children enough to wait for that day.

          2. As a guy, I hate the idea that our society largely accepts this ‘meet his needs or he’ll get them met elsewhere’.

            He’s a man, a grown adult. He should have self control, and when the going gets slow in the sex arena, he should have the ability to show some constraint and be patient. It’s certainly frustrating, to be sure.
            But any man who has to ‘get his needs met elsewhere’ because his wife is exhausted and needs physical space due to motherhood – this man is no man at all.

          3. To Dude: it’s so encouraging to hear that from a male. Thank you for being such an upright person. I’m not saying a man has to stay with a woman who isn’t meeting his needs if he doesn’t want to, but if the two choices are to stay and cheat or leave them then leaving them is the best option.

            What I would like to see is a couple working on fixing the problem together rather than trying to fix it with someone else. Doesn’t always work, but too many don’t even try and it’s to their own detriment.

          4. I soooo appreciate the comment of Dude – Thank you for being a REAL man!
            Yes, if you are a MAN you have respect for your wife and don’t run around “meeting your needs” like an infant the second your wife is too tired to do her “wifely duty”!
            I have 3 kids, breastfed a total of 12 years! And Yes, I have been exhausted, “touched out” and so on – And yes, we definitely had less sex than we used to when we were 25! BUT – my husband, with lots of communication, respects me and VALUES the sacrifices I make for our children and understands that his sexual needs come after the needs of our then little kids.
            Now that the kids are older, we have gotten closer and are able to push the kids out of the bedroom to make time for us – But this takes time, growth of the children and your relationship – and wont happen when there are little ones around.
            Yes, dates nites are nice if you can manage it, but any man that leaves and/or fools around because he’s not #1 in his wife’s book after having babies is no man I’d want around EVER!

          5. Marie – I’m a married man – 5 years – and we have a 4 year old and an 18 month old. This “asexual” argument you’re advancing to discount the above statement claiming that “our (needs) are not superior to his” – can you give me an approximate ballpark on an acceptable timetable that a loyal, married man should accept ? Is it okay for a woman to be asexual and deny sex to her husband for a month ? Three months ? Six months ? Years ? Because yours was the only comment besides the original article wrapped up exclusively in yourself I’d like to know at what point this “asexual” argument is no longer “okay.”

        2. I absolutely agree. One partner not wanting to do something that the other partner needs on a very basic level is selfish. It takes only a few minutes of your time to invest in your relationship being a fulfilling one for BOTH parties.

    2. Excellently written article and timely for myself and my wife who have just had our third – you’ve inspired me to write a similarly toned perspective from the husband

      This piece should help many couples bridge a sensitive topic, thank you!

    3. Wonderful letter, most of the moms I know feel this way. Sorry to read some of the self-righteous judgemental posts you got. Perhaps we can all try to understand others experiences more and judge less.

    4. This article came up on a FB repost by a ” friend”. Since the author chose to put this out there, I feel compelled to comment. As a 68 year old Papa of 5 and father of 3 grown children, I have some living behind me. This “Open Letter” seemed to be written by a sexually frustrated woman looking for comfort with like minded women. As a man reading this, my first thought was, dang it’s rambling. The author wrote a James Mitchner novel on why she doesn’t want to have sex with her husband. And that’s the bottom line, she doesn’t want to have sex with her husband. So instead of taking Dear Abby’s advice and seeking counseling for this, she blames the baby for her unwillingness to be intimate. This is just wrong. Quite frankly if I were her husband, I would be quite irritated at her for betraying the confidence of marriage, complaining to the world in her ” Open Letter”, rather than sharing her concerns with me and seeking professional guidance. It is very sad, the author’s husband obviously loves her and finds her arrousingly attractive. What does she to with that, slam him. Pitiful, just pitiful. The author will not always be as physically attractive as she or others thinks she is. There will come a time when she will long for a guy to look at her with lusting eyes.
      In conclusion, I found this article offensive and self centered.

      1. You’re one to speak about rambling!
        See, some women will chose a mate in life who understands that his penis is not the centre of their lives. Also, that it is a woman’s CHOICE to have sex when she feels like it. Not when someone “looks at her with lusting eyes” because some day they will not. My hope, is that at 69, my husband still looks at me as he does now as I do him. With love and respect.
        And let me tell you, once you’ve pushed a baby out of your vagina, nursed on cracked nipples, vasospasams and blood blisters, gotten up every 3 hours through pregnancy to pee and with a baby to feed for 2 years straight and it’s as dry as the middle of the sahara down there and then you walk a mile in someone elses shoes then AND ONLY THEN are you able to say “it’s just wrong”.

        In conclusion, this is why I hate the internet.

    5. Do you want to have sex in the bed naked and kissing each other’s private please baby I will marry you if you have sex with me.????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

    6. Dear Alex Alvis,

      Can we have sex in the bed naked and kiss each other’s private please if you have sex with me than I will marry you and give you five million seven thousand seven hundred fifty five dollars.????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

  1. Ok ladies. I am going to make this short and sweet. I feel see many women allowing them self to neglect their husband . Then they are upset their husband cheats. There is many ways to at least give him an orgasm daily or so . Blow jobs work quickly. Hand jobs work quickly.
    I work 7 pm to 7 am . homeschool our children . make every meal homemade and going through gyn surgeries about every 90 days and i still make sure my husbands needs are meant. Please donot tear down your beauitful marrage because you are tired. Be mindful every wife and mother has duties she must complete to have a happy complete home. Including a husband.

    1. For real I agree with everything you said when I saw this article the first thing to cross my mind is and they wonder why their husbands cheated

      1. Cheating is never a productive, honorable, or excusable reaction to a problem.

        Communicating with your significant other and mutually working towards a solution or divorce are the honorable courses of action.

    2. Ugh, why do his sexual needs matter so much more than a wife’s needs not to have sex? This line of reasoning is so destructive to women. Sexual needs come in all shapes and sizes and a woman’s need to abstain from sex is just as valid.
      And ladies, it’s not your responsibility to stop him from cheating. If he cheats, he’s a jerk, end of story, It wouldn’t have mattered how many blow jobs and hand jobs you gave him, he would have cheated eventually anyways.

      1. I agree. By this reasoning, military marriages with a deployed partner are doomed to cheating. And it would also stand to reason that a partner who is rendered a quadriplegic from an accident is doomed to have a cheating partner. We teach our girls “no means no” and married women also have a right to say no. Married (or otherwise partnered) women should not be expected to surrender themselves sexually if they don’t want to have sex. And I know plenty of cheating spouses who were getting serviced in every way, shape, and form at home and still went out for more. Nothing one person can do or not do in a marriage is responsible for another person’s choice to cheat.

        I deeply appreciated the validation of this article. I’m an exhausted mother of 5 whose body is currently completely shut down from the baby making desires. And I’m the wife of a patient and understanding man whose seen my desires ebb and flow over the past 16 years and he knows there is a time of greater abundance in days to come.

        1. Yet you were perfectly happy to have sex when you were getting what you wanted – a baby. Bet you wanted a big family and was happy to have a husband who allowed you to do that, while he got nothing in return except to be brought in from the stud barn when necessary. Maybe instead of having five you could have bothered to use some birth control so you wouldn’t be dealing with five and ignoring your husband.

          1. I’m going to go out on a limb and guess she was probably perfect my happy to have sex when she wanted to have sex, not just when she was getting a baby. He “allowed” her to have five children? I’m also going to assume this was a decision made together, not a number he dictated to her. He got nothing out of it? What about a large, beautiful family to love?

            Marriages are partnerships where people make life decisions together and share in the joy and failure of those decisions. It’s also a partnership where patience and understanding is exercised when one half of the partnership is struggling.

            Stacy, you’re doing an awesome job. I’m happy that you have such a great marriage.
            It saddens me that you have such a negative view of marriage and the balance of needs within it.

          2. Chandra
            September 13, 2015
            I’m going to go out on a limb and guess she was probably perfect my happy to have sex when she wanted to have sex, not just when she was getting a baby. He “allowed” her to have five children? I’m also going to assume this was a decision made together, not a number he dictated to her. He got nothing out of it? What about a large, beautiful family to love?

            Marriages are partnerships where people make life decisions together and share in the joy and failure of those decisions. It’s also a partnership where patience and understanding is exercised when one half of the partnership is struggling. It saddens me that you have such a negative view of marriage and the balance of needs within it.

            Stacy, you’re doing an awesome job. I’m happy that you have such a great marriage.

            – See more at:

          3. My family unfolded as God and nature allowed. I always kind of imagined 3 kids. I came from a family with just 2 kids. My husband always wanted 5, and now is thrilled. It’s literally and figuratively his dream come true. He is a happy and proud year-round multi-sport coach and is now as busy as he prayed he would someday be, all the while able to provide for his family financially while I have been able to stay home and keep a full calendar volunteering at school and church. And believe me, no one in this house is ever ignored. 🙂 I would hardly call 5 children “nothing in return”. We are busy, that’s for certain. But the balance is very much in our favor. No one needs to feel sorry for my family.

        2. Having sex is an important way to maintain intimacy in a marriage for BOTH partners. Without it, you may end up at the best friendly roommates or at worst divorced. It took 2 of you to start a family. Your marriage is the foundation. After 38 years with my “first husband” who I am still married to, and many years breastfeeding and mothering, I now see that putting off intimacy never has a good outcome in the long run.

      2. I do think there are circumstances where separations are going to be necessary. Military. Sickness. And I’ve seen husbands abandon in this moments. They forgot the “for better or worse” and “in sickness and in health” commitment. It’s poor logic to apply the forced separation to the average everyday marriage. We get a choice. In some cases, the husband needs to die to his needs in order to allow room for the touched out mom, well, not be touched. But this dying to self needs to go both ways. It’s very easy to get caught up in what we need because we are constantly giving and just isn’t much left of us. That is where we have to push ourselves, every once in a while, into uncomfortable places we may not feel like going. We sacrifice for our children beyond our comfort. I think our husband want to know we are willing to put them ahead of ourselves too. I am a mom of 7. I’ve been married for 19 yrs. There were times when I did, through tremendous tears, tell my husband that felt so touched out. When I did sacrifice just a bit more of me, I found that he became much more understanding. He allowed me freedom to say “not tonight”. He was more patient with me. I am a homeschool mom of teenagers now. Seriously, if you think you’re busy now, let me just warn you that it only gets worse once they get in high school. I’ve been broadsided by how busy we are. I’m also older. I’m more tired than I was as a younger mom because, well, 40 arrived. That tired doesn’t always go away. It just changes. Health problems do kick in. I have Lyme and periodically struggle with tremendous joint pain. Sometimes I say no. Honestly, sometimes he says no. LOL!!! I think the ultimate question is whether we are going to be willing, AT TIMES, to lay down ourselves and sacrifice for our husbands. Die to self. Isn’t that what we expect of our husbands? Should it go both ways? BOTH husband and wife must be willing to give to the other beyond what they FEEL they can give. We are more busy now than we ever were before. We are constantly reminding ourselves that when they leave the nest, it will just be us. What kind of relationship will we have at that point? Relationship change over time. The honeymoon does end. How strong is the commitment to fight through the tough times? This isn’t just the husbands responsibility to be committed when it’s hard. We bare some of that too. It’s a partnership. Please don’t misunderstand me. I really, really do not want to minimize the exhaustion of motherhood. I’ve been there (I am there.) I guess I want to speak as the mom who has been there and done it.

        I wasn’t sure I was going to like this open letter. I actually agree with her in many ways. But my fear was what the affirmation for it would look like. Marriage is a commitment to each other. . .not the husband being there to just serve the wife. Yes, mommas, we are going to be very tired. Do you not think that your husbands are tired too? They carry the weight of the world on their shoulders trying to make ends meet and take care of the family they also love and adore. It’s a dog eat dog world out there. They carry stress too. And many men will hide it so as not to appear weak to the women that would die for. We have to walk in their shoes every once in a while. . .just as we expect them to do. Our husbands are not our enemy and vice versa. We are in this together. A team. But teams will sacrifice for one another when it’s necessary. So kudos for the letter but please don’t use it as a battering ram for your husband who just wants to be close to you.

        1. I’m sorry. This sentences should never, never, never be stated

          “He allowed me freedom to say “not tonight””

          You have that freedom. Anything less is at best coercion and at most rape.

          Perhaps what you were trying to say is “he did not feel shorted or less loved if I said not tonight”? But if our brains (the collective) are saying that our partners have the right to grant us the autonomy to decide whether we consent to sex then we are in seriously dangerous territory.

          As the mother of sons (as well as daughters) I have a critical eye on the “rape culture” and consent conversations that are taking place among teens and on college campuses (I have youngers as well as 2 teens and a college student) – and I think some of this affirmative consent stuff is setting, primarily young, men up to be accused of criminal activity when it was just dumb choice on all parties parts.

          But… that statement “He allowed me freedom to say “not tonight””. Sent chills down my spine. Just as when I read about doctors “allowing” moms to eat during labor or some other such nonsense. It is your body and if you need to permission from anyone else to decide how to use it…. and if we are teaching that to our daughters and our sons….

      3. Theoretically you’re right. Your argument is logical and well thought through. Women and men are equal and our needs matter too. Yes theoretically this is valid. This is also politically correct and academically correct. As a physician with over 12 years of school under my belt, I agree with you. However, real life doesn’t work always work this way. Real life isn’t always politically correct, socially correct, or academically correct. If you want to have a happy marriage and ultimately be happy yourself in life, you need to think about meeting your husbands biological needs for sex on a daily basis. This is something he cannot control. It is a biological need controlled by hormones. You can’t change biology, even if it makes things “unequal” between men and women. We are equal, but biologically, our bodies and need for sex is NOT equal. Poster above is right. Blow jobs and hand jobs work great. I work 80-100 hrs a week as a physician, often night shifts. I have dysparenuia (pain from sex). But you know what, I take an ibuprofen, I drink a coffee, and I take care of my husband. Because he always takes care of my needs. Yes some days, like after a 36 hr shift, I am really too tired to have sex and he understands. He’ll happily wait for me to sleep and then we can go have some fun 😉 sex is good for us ladies, physically and emotionally. I’ve seen too many smart and educated women, doctors like myself, end up as divorced, unhappy, lonely women. My boss who is also a physician, stopped having sex with her husband, he cheated on her, and now she drinks herself to sleep every night.

        1. There is very little support for the idea that a man has a “biological needs for sex on a daily basis” You & your husband may enjoy that, but that doesn’t make it a “need” for every human man. My goodness, how did all the young men survive being singles?! If it was REALLY a need, we should see all the unlucky and virgin young men in the hospital, from “re-absorbed sperm sickness” (yes, I made that up!) . Seriously, From a Catholic perspective. Natural Family Planning (and other ‘awareness” family planning methods) dictates that couples abstain from intercourse during the fertile days (7 to 14 days). For new NFP couples who are not open to children yet, they may err on the side of caution and abstain the longer time. From a Jewish perspective, Family Purity Laws dictate that couples abstain for 7 to 10 days in a “normal” month. For women with abnormal cycles there may be the occasional month there are no “ok” days. Faithful honorable husbands do not cheat. These times are times to explore other ways to express our love. Gifts. notes & love letters. a slightly nicer meal (maybe takeout?), walks together (maybe pushing the double stroller), intentional conversations while cleaning the kitchen together. And yes, all those things can happen with children. The glue that holds a couple together is more than sexual body fluids. Yes, we rejoice when we can be together! In fact nursing moms with young children who practice both these methods report that they are MORE open to having sex during the “safe” days after having had a “break” for a week or more, even though the touch needs from their children were still very high. There is a “time to embrace & a time to refrain from embracing”. A book I would recommend to any couple is “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Smalley. (Yes, physical touch is one of them, but only one.) Find out what each other’s other love languages are and speak those language even when you can’t be physically intimate. – Blessings! – A still fertile mom of 8 (ages 3 & up) , happily married 25+ years.

      4. Jamie, No one is saying that a mans needs outweigh a womans. What is being said is that we are all sexual beings, the proof is in the children we created. What is being said is that we all get tiered, you don’t think it’s hard for the husband? Go off every day and work to support his family? Back some 40 or 50 years ago it was the norm for the wife to stay home and raise a family but in today’s day and age, it is the norm for both husband and wife to work, living on only one salary as a family is very difficult. When a woman stays home to raise her children in these “modern” times, the man becomes the sole bread winner, do you have any idea how much pressure that puts on someone? Knowing that he holds the key to their very survival? Do you know what goes through a mans mind when he is not getting physical affection from the woman he has chosen to live his life with, to raise his children with? It is complete and utter destruction to his self worth, down to his very soul. It is crushing. To know that not only have you taken a back seat to your children, you are not even in the car anymore.

        No one is saying that a woman needs to “service” her man if she truly does not want to. No one is saying that she should prostitute herself because her man has “needs”. What they are saying is you have to weigh your feelings of exhaustion or of being “touched out” with what is important to you. If you are giving everything to your children and leaving nothing for the man who spawned them with you then what are you saying to him? Thanks for the kids, I don’t need you anymore. And if you think for a moment that is not what is going through his mind, think again.

        I’m just a man, with all the bullshit that goes along with being a man. I was raised to not cry, crying is for babies. I was raised to be strong and protect the ones I love but it I am not feeling loved, how do I know who to protect? Men are no different from women, we cry, only we hide it better. So while “Courtney’s” comment about giving her guy BJ’s and HJ’s to keep him happy and content is somewhat over simplified and juvenile in it’s thinking, it is at the very least, an effort. And if you are not making an effort, if you are so self absorbed that you can’t put yourself in his shoes for even a moment, then you don’t deserve him. Your comment “And ladies, it’s not your responsibility to stop him from cheating. If he cheats, he’s a jerk, end of story” Yes, some men cheat just because they are cheaters and nothing you do will stop that but that’s not what we are talking about here is it? If you husband stopped having sex with you, if nothing you could do reversed it, nothing you said made any difference, would you live with that? Humm, if you could, you are a better person than I.

        It’s not cut and dry, it’s life.

      5. Our “needs” to not have sex is simply frame of mind. We can get ourselves into the mood if we stop being so bloody entitled. Sex as a need is a primal, carnal, BIOLOGICAL need.

        If a man cheats because you’re holding out on him constantly, then that’s just as much your fault for IGNORING your relationship as it is his fault for being a “jerk”.

        Don’t trap them into a relationship if you aren’t willing to be the same sexual being you were in the beginning. That’s false advertising. Make some damn effort.

        1. The belief that people remain “the same” throughout their lifetime is unrealistic. So, just as women’s hormones ebb and flow, especially just following childbirth, so do men’s. I doubt it would be advised for women to leave their husbands when they begin experiencing ED (as is mostly inevitable at some age) or call it “false advertising” if they aren’t “the same sexual being” as in the youth of their relationship.

          1. Hopefully, all people change, evolve and grow through theirs lives. I never have understood the argument of a spouse changing during the relationship or not being the same as in the begining, bar a drastic change in values, mental illness, addiction, spouses should support their partners personal growth and challenges in life.

        2. THANK YOU for being one of the few women to say this

          I’m not going to ramble again – read my post near the end of the comments if anyone would like

          But if a woman isn’t interested in sex with her husband, embrace an open relationship or create an amicable divorce/co-parenting situation.

          Look – all of us guys know going into this that children are going to cause stress and result in less time for them. But NONE or next to none?

          I’m as loyal as they come and never cheated – but I felt FULLY justified if I did (my reasons not to cheat were my own – certainly not out of love for a wife who clearly couldn’t or wouldn’t love me back)

          No excuses. If you want to be married be intimate with the man you made a baby with.

          If you don’t want sex then from any guy’s perspective, you don’t want to be married and you should cut him loose to find love and intimacy with someone who appreciates him, as “you” (those who subscribe to this.

          You’ll have a happier and more engaged co-parent. You can live alone with the kids and even have more alone time when they are visiting their dad – all of which will potentially make you happy as there will be no more husband doing that awful thing we do of wanting to be intimate with our wives.

          And you will be teaching your kid an important lesson either way – patterning a good, loving intimate relationship for your kids to replicate for their own happy lives – rather than the excuse filled loveless marriage that you perpetuate for yourself – and eventually for your children.

      6. YES! This! Thank you. So many misogynistic comments in this thread. Our needs are just as valid as our husbands’ needs, and it is NEVER one person’s fault if the other cheats. We are all responsible for our own choices.

        1. Agreed. And if a woman is making a choice not to be intimate, then that’s a choice to have a toxic relationship – and a choice to likely eventually end the relationship.

          The fact that anyone views men/husbands as misogynistic for seeking the same intimacy you lured them into marriage with pretty much says it all. I give the men credit for speaking up in this forum or in the household.

          Many will just suck it up and accept a loveless marriage. That’s of course much worse and you WILL eventually be divorced – but at least you’ll have the peace of mind of knowing that your marriage failed because you were too tired (and really, we’re not looking for sexual areobatics here – lie there, motionless – spread legs or offer an active hand or breast – you really need do nothing but lay there to initiate a QUANTUM leap of intimacy in the eye of men who might still love you, despite your rejection of them

          It’s heartbreaking to share all of this for me after years and years and years of speaking up as a good husband and father who was always the absolutely last priority.

          Divorce is SO much better than a loveless marriage and I have more confidence that my son will not accept a wife who doesn’t appreciate him – and that my daughter will pick a good man and never toss him aside for what is a bottomless well of excuses to abandon an intimate relationship

          The truth isn’t misogynistic. Most of the women posting here need to have a MAJOR attitude adjustment or should just file for an amicable divorce right now – for the good of their kids.

    3. All I have to say about your post is… I feel sorry for your kids if you are the one homeschooling them. Take some time out of giving your husband a blow job, a hand job, or any other form of orgasm you are doing to him and learn how to write a proper paragraph. I bet your that mom who at 8 weeks (or less) was right back to “pleasing” your man. Good for you, and Good for him! Go fuck and stop judging others for not putting their husband before themselves every once and a while, god forbid!

      1. Be careful about criticizing another’s writing ability when you fail to edit yourself. ‘Your’ is possessive; you needed to have used ‘you’re’, which is the contraction for ‘you are’.

    4. I think Courtney has a very good point. Husbands (and many wives) have sexual needs. I found that breastfeeding decreased my desire for sex. I breastfed both of my kids for a year. You mention five years of breastfeeding for two kids. (did i read this right?) If it’s making you feel this way, I would consider stopping.

      1. Agree. American Academy of Pediatrics recommends 6-12 months of breastfeeding. If you have only 2 kids but you have spent 5 years nursing, then what you are doing is really not necessary. Think about weaning. It will probably make every person in your family, including yourself, ultimately happier.

        1. Who (besides a doctor) feels the need to add the irrelevant information of their occupation? As if that will impress others into giving their comments more weight. I think some people need to get back to their very important occupation and spend less time trying to talk the internet into having more sex.

          Second, I have been in hundreds of doctors’ exam rooms and not one has ever asked how much sex I’m having or how many hand/blow jobs I give my husband – least of all my kids’ pediatricians. I’m not sure exactly how Kelly can say which of her happy and well-adjusted patients’ parents are having the most sex, or how she is an expert in this arena, but whatever.

          Personally I know my husband would rather not have a pity fuck. Orgasms are great but come on, who wants their partner thinking, “Please get off so I can go to sleep already.” If you both walk in the door at 9-10 pm and then you get the kids bathed, read to, and put to bed, with 5-6 hours to go until you have to get up and do it all again, sometimes getting adequate rest so you can function as a human being the next day takes precedence over having an orgasm. Or over having to have your spouse involved in that orgasm.

          I won’t even get into the ridiculous discussion if a pediatrician really recommending early breastfeeding (WHO says 2+ years) just so moms can give more blow jobs. You need to get on board with full-term breastfeeding and stop worrying about strangers’ sex lives.

          1. Kelly didn’t say she was a doctor. She merely quoted the Pediatric Association.

            In terms of the breastfeeding– I’m sorry but I do think that, if it’s affecting your libido (and many women say it does), 6-12 months is plenty.

        2. The American Academy of Pediatrics is hyper conservation due to our issues with modesty etc in the US. The World Health Organization and UNICEF recommend breastfeeding for “up to 2 years of age or beyond.” Although, I believe it’s a personal decision on what is “necessary” or not.

        3. The length that a mother nurses her child is really no ones business but hers.
          I stopped nursing my 2nd child at just over 2 years. I would have gone longer if my little one wanted, but he weaned himself. There is absolutely nothing wrong with nursing 2 kid’s for a collective 5 years.

          Did nursing make me feel less like having sex? Maybe, but my husband understood the benefits our son was getting and the benefits I was getting from nursing and encouraged it for as long as it was mutually beneficial for myself and my son.

    5. @ Courtney,
      I agree 100%. Our lives are similar. A quick and simple solution–when my husband gets home form work in the afternoon, 2 minutes locked in the bathroom (before or after his shower) keeps the machine rolling smoothly. It isn’t the ideal solution, but we’ve now got teens, and they are up as late as we are, in addition to the baby I’m nursing. I think as wives it should give us joy to make our man happy–even if I don’t feel like it, it gives me a boost to know that I’ve at least made his day brighter, especially after a hard day at work dealing with difficult people.

      1. Moms, I guarantee that the dads / husbands are taking care of themselves over and above whatever sexual schedule you have set. Only the most crass and uncaring would consider crossing the line of “demanding” that their needs be met. But the feeling of abandonment creeps in day by day. Add into that issues around perimenopause, etc. and while the male engine keeps on spinning, the mismatch of intimacy is a threat to the relationship.

        I don’t have a solution. My present approach includes an active imagination and a few minutes of me time when I need it. One thing is certain, BOTH partners need to be blunt about their current levels of sex drive and figure out how to take care of EACH OTHER.

    6. I was thinking the same exact thing as I read the article . I was thinking next will be the article on infidelity in the marriage . Men are definitely wired differently and I do agree wives shouldn’t neglect the needs of the husband or ignore their role as wife and partner in exchange for role as Mother . I am not saying its easy to juggle it , or that I do not understand low libido , but like you expressed … just find ways and get the job done , don’t give your man a reason to stray or to live in a romanceless sexless relationship .

    7. 100% agree with you. Men have a biological need for sex. While women have an affection need met through kisses and cuddling, men’s needs are specifically met only through sex. If you don’t meet your husband’s needs, he will get the sex he needs from another woman. Even if he loves you. He needs to have sex, and if his wife can’t take care of him, someone else will.

      I’m a pediatrician and I see a lot of families. The families where the woman puts her husbands needs above her children’s needs have the happiest children. They are the most successful and grateful children, the most polite and well behaved. They are happy because their parents have a happy marriage and because they are not being overwhelmed by an overbearing mother who is overly concerned about meeting their needs. The mothers who put their children above all else end up with spoiled brats who end up hating and resenting their mothers. The parents get divorced and the kids love their dad more because he doesn’t give them too much attention. The kids end up having a hard time in life, hard time getting a good job and getting through college so end up losers because they had too much attention and spoiling from mom. Just something I have seen through years of practice.
      Moral of the story: focus on your husband, not your kids

    8. Blow jobs? Hand jobs? Really? If a person is too tired to spread her legs because she is emotionally and physically exhausted from gratifying others (her kids) all day, is a blow job going to be “easier”? Is a husband really just another baby with “needs to be met” and with no regard of the cost to the woman?

    9. That’s what I thought. I am frequently not in the mood for sex, but I make sure if my husband is not getting any nookie he’s at least getting a blowjob twice a week. Sometimes I consent to sex for no other reason than I know it’s been awhile for him, and then when things get going I end up enjoying myself.

    10. I didn’t realise the internet was available there in the 1950’s. Can you just let everyone know about global warming and to ease up on the polluting for us people here in 2015? That’d be awesome. Thanks!!

    11. Yes. Satisfy your husbands needs in the most degrading manner possible. I’d divorce my husband for even suggesting that or wanting that from me. I’d tell him if he wants that kind of woman that I’d be happy to find him a decent strip club. Cause I’d be done with him. You’re a sick person for suggesting that women do that “just to please their husband’s want for sex” We are not (even men) solely driven by instinct and base appetites. Men have chosen and been happy not having sex. It is important for most men but that doesn’t mean that they walk around like zombies moaning “seeeeeeexx seeexx”. This comment is just as stupid as this article. The article assumes that the mother will just “end this season” and that the hubby just has to wait. Which makes this article irrelevant for any mother not intending on using birth control. Cause then you never know how long the season will end. It could be till she’s too old to have kids.

      1. I think you’re on the same page with most of the men here if I interpret your post correctly.

        It’s one thing to hear “I’m not in the mood” once in awhile. But if sex itself is only once in awhile – rather than the lack of the right “mood”- or not “in the season” well then the marriage will be on the rocks pretty soon if it’s not already.

        I’m not sure what you think is “degrading” though – a BJ or HJ which was suggested as an alternative to the “I don’t have time” excuse shouldn’t be considered degrading to the man or the woman (unless we’re talking a puritan wife or something)

        Most men think it’s degrading that they even have to go to these lengths to get their wives to show them physical affection – but at least it shows their wives are actually TRYING to save their marriage and families.

        A BJ or HJ would take maybe 10 minutes as opposed to a good 30 min fully intimate “session” between two partners – hence the suggestion above. And of course one hopes that a good wife does that out of love – not with a begrudging “OK dammit! I’ll show you some affection – just leave me alone!” – as I think most guys would rather be divorced than treated that way. Love and respect is what most men crave – and without routine intimacy we don’t feel loved or respected (and why would we?)

        The reality is, it’s not a lack of time – it’s a lack of desire on a wife’s part – and most guys have figured out that their wives no longer desire them once they’ve gotten to this point. They don’t want sex of any nature with a woman they once loved who apparently now feels they’re too disgusting to have sex with.

        It’s not about their lack of time – if a woman won’t find 10 -30 minutes a few times a week for a person you supposedly love – well then here again – get divorced ASAP! This is not a woman any man should want to be married to. The excuse that she “can’t” find the time just illustrates that she views her husband as a non-priority. His wife will never find the time for him and will always have a new excuse or “condition” for what most husbands were lead to believe was her unconditional love for him.

        Eventually this dawns on most husbands – and their coping skill for a wife who doesn’t desire them is to no longer desire the wife who won’t find the time for him.

        By the time her desire might return, emotionally her husband is already divorced and looking longingly at the many good wives out there who seem to WANT to find the time to be affectionate to their husband – even if their libido is not as high as it was pre-kids.

        How did any of us good men get stuck with these wives who have such a long list of “conditions” for their supposed “unconditional love”? Who knows – but if you are stuck with such a woman, stop worrying about meeting those conditions and just start planning your divorce ASAP.

        (And if you’re a guy with a woman who considers a HJ or BJ “degrading” – you might be well to divorce her too assuming she won’t “find the time” for actual sex too – there’s plenty of good women and mothers out there who DO make their men a priority in life – end your sham marriage and get out there and find one of them!)

  2. There is one part of this article I really don’t understand:
    But by the time the chance arises to …make something else arise… we’re ready to collapse, relax and not. be. touched. by. anyone.

    We never thought we’d hear those words from you, darling husband. But 2 kids and 5 years of breastfeeding later…the sentence was spoken.

    So, the sentence spoken by your darling husband was, “we’re ready to collapse, relax and not. be. touched. by. anyone.”??? That doesn’t make sense. If not that sentence, which one was it?

  3. As a dad and husband, this felt more like a pat on the head than anything else. It’s important to stay intimately connected with your hubby too and there are easy ways. And, thank you for all you do as moms also. We know its a helluva job and do appreciate it tremendously!

  4. And for us moms with 5 kids, working at home or out of the home all day and our husbands don’t want to be intimate? There are many hurting on both sides and both sexes.

  5. It’s also important for your children to learn that they are not the center of the universe. Love them yes, but when they see a healthy loving relationship they feel secure. I did it, we had three kids, the house was a mess, and dinner might just be canned soup, but at night when everyone else was asleep and he reached for me, I answered, because I would reach for him too, I needed his emotional support just as much as the physical intimacy.

    1. AMEN !!! Probably the smartest bit of advice on this entire page 🙂 This society nowadays has put our children so high on the pedestal that they do not understand THEIR place and role . Make time for you partner .. period .

      1. What about this made you think it was sacrificing for the children? This was about mom and *her* needs. Are you suggesting that she not hold and tend to her babies (remember these are kids under 5)? Because for those of us who have low touch thresholds and/or are introverts it isn’t about “carving out” 5 or 30 minutes uninterrupted… it is about have the mental and emotional capacity to literally sacrifice “self” to preform sexually. I have burst into tears in the middle of sex because I just.didn’ even though I did love my husband and so wanted to meet his needs. Yeah – real connecting and enjoyable for all of us.

  6. Dudes. You don’t have a right to sex with anyone. Even someone you married. That’s it, full stop. Which also means that it’s not an occasion for feeling done hard by if the lady’s not having sex with you. Go have a nice wank, develop an imagination.

    I’ve been a single mom for a long time now, and from the outset I decided that my daughter didn’t need strange men traipsing through her life, so I kept any romantic life separate. I still wasn’t having a hell of a lot of sex with men, because I didn’t have time, but even though I really like sex it seems I didn’t die — I am pretty good at getting myself off, though, and I took care of myself plenty. Eventually I thought I’d met someone I could introduce my daughter to…and oh, what a mistake that was. Nope nope nope.

    Since then I’ve realized that I’ve met not a single man who wasn’t pretty childish about the whole situation. Who didn’t want me, effectively, taking care of him. When I’m like hello, I already have to take care of myself and a child and support us. Sure, I heard plenty of hero talk about how wonderfully the guy would support us and take care of us, but it was pretty plain baloney, and also obvious that the idea was to buy himself more alone time, not help us as a family. So…no. I’ve not had a sexual partner in…er…two years now, and again, I seem to be not dying from it.

    My advice: Honestly. Learn how to get yourself off. And if your wife’s cool with it, find a fuckbuddy. If she’s not, then don’t, but do buy lots of lube.

  7. OK, then do your husbands a favor and divorce them. Jesus, so they go to work and provide, and you can’t even find 10 minutes to let them hold you? You got what you wanted from them – their sperm – and now you toss them aside. Why bother getting married at all? Oh right, for their income.

    There’s having a low libido because you’re tired, and there’s not even bothering. You clearly fall into the second category. Talk about selfish. I have twins who are now three, work full time and yet still find time to be a wife. It’s because I care about my husband and realize he has needs too. He’s a human being, not something you yank out of the closet when you are ready.

    Put down the kid for 10 minutes. It won’t turn them into unattached serial killers, honest.

    1. “not even bothering” That is exactly it.

      It seems a lot of these women (and some men) forget that they were partners before they were parents and they will be partners when their kids leave their nest; partners in retirement. They are worth that investment of 10 minutes.

    2. I love the assumption from a lot of posters here that the husband is providing for the family. Um, wow, no. Some of us are in household where both parents work. Myself, I earn more than my husband. And I have the main focus of the kids, because two of them are still under the age of 3. So when I get “touched out,” ticked off by work, and tired because the baby won’t sleep through the night, everyone just needs to leave me the h*** alone, especially my husband and best friend who works at home alongside me. Seriously, have you people never heard of masturbation? There is nothing wrong with letting him take care of himself. Heaven knows I take care of myself if we get into a stretch where there’s no openings for sex and I’ve managed to carve out 15 minutes alone.

      And yes, men *can* get their emotional needs at least partly fulfilled by non-sexual intimate contact, just like women can–loving physical touch is loving physical touch. No, it’s not going to be quite as effective as sex, but it still communicates the emotion and physical need and lets you connect. So don’t trot out that tired old BS about “men NEEEEEED sex”; it’s a stupid stereotype that men are pushed to believe, and some never question, using as an excuse to betray their spouses emotionally and sexually. If you have a guy who’s trying to use “my wife won’t have sex with me” as an excuse for cheating, what you’re looking at is not a poor unloved, uncared-for husband, but a coward who hasn’t pushed hard enough to either work the problem out with his wife or be honest and leave. There is no honor in cheating, and I have no sympathy for men who sneak around rather than being honest that the status quo is making them think about the D-word.

      One place I differ with Sara is in the idea that “touched out” means “argh please don’t touch me at all.” I’ve been trying to shift that a bit in regards to my response to my husband by actively going to him for hugs and cuddles and kisses even when I *don’t* want sex right at that time. I trust him to not try to push the situation further than I want at that point, and look at it as a way to fulfill *my* needs for contact that has no ulterior motive or demand attached to it. If you’re a wife whose libido is utterly suppressed–and I totally understand that–I strongly recommend chatting with your husband about what means sex versus “I simply need to be physically close to you to let out some stress,” and trying to just up the non-sexual physical contact. Spending a few minutes just hugging with my husband helps us both to feel more in touch, and actually makes me feel a little more inclined toward sex when we have an open spot.

      Overall, can everyone, especially those of you pushing how important it is to “take care of your husband” (what is he, another freaking kid??), just back off the self-righteous judgment? If you disagree with the OP, that’s fine, but at least try to understand what she’s going through rather than immediately piling on to tell her she’s a terrible wife. Guess what: your lives might be different from hers, and just maybe your situation is so different that you cannot try to hold her to your standards.

  8. Most dad’s do understand that it’s draining being super mom. So thank you for recognizing that its Hard… to explain this to the little soldier that made you a mom. I don’t know why people have to take this to extremes. It has to be a balance. Just show your lover the affection they need and deserve. And Men try and do the dishes or vacuum from time to time. Physically expressing your love is an absolute requirment if want it to continue to grow.

  9. Sara, this is a very important article for you to read:

    “To Wives: Why is Sex So Important”

    Here’s a summary:
    – Benefit #1: Fulfilling sex makes him feel loved and desired
    – Benefit #2: Fulfilling sex gives him confidence
    – Wound #1: “If she doesn’t want to, I feel incredible rejection.”
    – Wound #2: your lack of desire can send him into depression.

    Putting out, a blow job or a hand job is not what our husbands are looking for. They are looking for that strong, intimate connection with their wife and sex is like a fulfillment of those emotions.

    If they don’t feel love and desire from their wife, if they feel depressed and lonely and rejected… guess how they feel when a woman at work or a female friend starts showing them attention? Starts complimenting them on their appearance, tells them they are funny and that they love spending time with them… AND this happens to women too who are similarly rejected in this way… this is a main reason for cheating. It’s not about appeasing some sort of sexual desire (they can give themselves a hand job), it’s about feeling wanted and desired by your own spouse.

    You need to communicate that somehow… hugs and kisses work too. You need to reach out to him as well as come to him as he reaches to you. Else, don’t be surprised if he/she ends up reaching for someone else.

    1. I can understand the feeling rejected and needing to find validation elsewhere, but in that scenario you set up the man has three options: cheat, communicate with this wife about how he feels, or get a divorce. I know which two options I find to be the most honorable ones even if one of them is sad.

      There is no excuse for cheating.

  10. What is all this about sperm banks and “he gave you what you wanted so now you can toss him aside”?? Seriously? Like the only person contributing in this scenario is that poor poor man that works so hard… while his greedy neglectful wife is sitting at home sipping cocktails and running up the credit card bills while her perfect babies change and feed themselves before putting themselves to bed at night. Get real. Does your husband at least return the favor when you do your daily “it’s the least I can do” hand/blow job? Or would that be asking too much?

  11. as a 30 year married woman with no kids, this article and many of the comments make me feel embarrassed for our collective state of self-awareness!

    1. I am so glad I am not alone in that reaction! I’m a 32 year old married woman with no kids as well. Just like most of the internet conversation, I find much of this appalling, but I guess it’s good that everyone’s being honest. I don’t like a lot of what’s being said, but at least there is a dialogue.

    1. its a good article in that its definitely a real issue , and its definitely very common . So is infidelity and not because of lack of sex … but because of years of being ignored , your needs being set aside and ignored . Too many Mothers are so unbalanced busy catering to the excess at their Mom job that they forget to balance that with their other role .. being a wife and partner . Not just about the sex but what about the lack of intimacy ? Being intimate and connected on that level is so important to a healthy happy marriage or partnership . Why does it surprise you that people frown on the article suggesting that its ok to just take years off from your marriage in order to fulfill your role as parent ? A little understanding on both sides ( husband and wife ) and maybe you can’t be sex goddess you once were but there are ways to give you hubby a little affection and a quick release to let him know he’s wanted and desired ) . Just because the Mother decided she is ok with no sex … she shouldn’t just decide to shut her husband off until the kids are older or grown . That is just a recipe for disaster , and honestly I would not blame a man for finding that connection outside his marriage , if wife choose to indefinitely ignore him sexually . You don’t have to have a high libido to give a 10 minute blow job to your hubby and make him skip his way to work 🙂

  12. I think it is fair to say that not everyone views this the same. I agree with both sides in a way. Lord knows I understand being tired. There are some nights I didn’t feel up to it…but once I started fooling around with him…idk…I kinda wanted to. I’m not sure I’ve ever told him “No”… but then again he doesn’t hound me or anything. If he can clearly see my day has been horrific… he just soothes me with a foot rub or something..and asks for nothing in return. He knows the next day…or maybe the next (if that day was super bad) I will repay him for his respect and kindness.

    That’s what the truth is… it’s about respect… he respects me enough to let it go when he can see I’m exhausted and I respect him enough to give it a try… even if I’m tired sometimes… and I DON’T do it so he won’t cheat…smh.. I do it because I think he’s a wonderful man and while he’s understanding… I don’t wanna force him to ALWAYS have to be understanding.

    These are OUR views as a married couple… it works for us but not everyone is the same. Some of these comments are just so extreme on both sides… it doesn’t have to be that way… just chill… a lil give… a lil take…

  13. Thank you for this wonderful article. My wife is pregnant now with our third daughter, and it can be hard sometimes when she is not in the mood. But I guess I have to be patient and look at the big picture, we are both raising these wonderful little people and part of that is sacrifice from both of us. I pray God gives me and all the husbands out there the patience and the willpower till our ladies can be ready for us again.

  14. I encourage anyone feeling this way to track their libido with their moon cycle. Chances are that for a few days to a week each month you confidently desire your partner (ovulation) and the other three weeks you might feel jealous (prior to ovulation) depressed (post-ovulation) or resigned and tired (menses). When your partner is aware of your cycle they can understand your moods better. Just a thought. I consider myself an animal scientist so I am keenly aware of hormonal cycles in breeding animals which colors my point of view when it comes to sex and desire.

    1. I 100% have noticed this pattern in my life . Do you have any links or articles to share that support this , would be helpful to many women to connect back to our primal nature and bodies .

    2. just fyi — this assumes cycles. For those who have had full hysterectomies, are post-menopausal, don’t ovulate regularly, or are experiencing LAM it doesn’t apply. For example – I usually don’t resume my cycle for 2-2.5 yrs postpartum.

      Additionally, it is a bit cis-centric.

  15. I am disappointed with the mistakes in this article, not to mention the actual message. I could understand something like this from someone whose job is not writing but from Mothering and as the leading article in the newsletter. Why didn’t anyone edit this piece?
    I would advise the author to write from her own perspective and not fall into this ‘open letter’ fad, perhaps leave that for something more meaningful. The fact that her husband was upset she wrote this speaks volumes. The picture of a mom with a child when the letter is directed to her husband, oh, all sexually frustrated husbands, is just off.
    I would like to expect more from Mothering but it doesn’t seem to be the trend.
    Are Moms now also not able to put the appropriate effort into their jobs (in this case writing)? Seek some support, nutrition, counseling, social time. Yes, this time is fleeting but there is no reason to come out of it defeated and exhausted. We are able to meet the needs of the families we create, with joy! Get enough rest, drink lots of water and make sure you have a healthy diet and exercise. If these basics are too hard right now then get support. You deserve it and your families (and husbands) deserve it.

    1. I agree. i’m especially bothered by the author’s use of “We” – “we don’t want sex. We don’t want anyone to touch us”. I assume that “WE” is supposed to be all mothers, like the author. Many mothers feel the way she does when we have a newborn baby, but she has children who seem to be older (five years of breastfeeding?) I think she should speak for herself!!!

  16. This is so needed. I had four daughters in 10 years (miscarried one between baby #3 and #4) and breastfed, was a stay at home mother, driver, personal shopper and so much more (for him also). And even though I had full-time help around the house, the children consumed me. I also breastfed for a total of 8.5 years between the 4 and all my former spouse could think about was how infrequently we were having “sex.” He came home one day and told me his doctor said that at his age, he should be having sex 3 times a week to which I responded; “is your doctor a man? Has he given birth and is he currently breastfeeding a 2 year old and have a 5 and 7 year old he tends to day and night (he never once got up with sick babies.toddlers/children in our 16 year marriage). I told him to go ahead and have “sex” with anyone he wanted because I was not available 3 times/week, but to please use protection. Someone needs to educate men about this, in a big way. I was intimate with him many times when I had no desire to, in order to keep the peace and one day I decided that love and a happy marriage encompasses much more than what he was able to bring to the table.

  17. Dear women reading this article: No one ever has a right to your body. None. It is not selfishness or sperm-theft to ask your husband for space, and it is extremely disturbing to read so many women — mothers, raising the next generation of husbands and wives — expressing such vile opinions. Sex does not define a relationship. Love is more. YOU are more. Simply keep your communication open and build intimacy in other ways. A man who loves you will respect you and adjust to changes in your relationship. He will work with you and be a partner in finding solutions to hard times.
    He will never try to guilt you into sex.
    Having sex which you do not expect to enjoy or do not especially want, just because you think it is your duty, or because you think it will keep your husband from cheating on you, is not healthy. Honey, you’re worth more than that.
    Now there are some very conservative communities in which women are not viewed as equal partners; if you have been raised to think you need a master, or that it is somehow sacred to sacrifice your own needs to serve your husband’s sex drive, or that you are just not on equal footing with him, then I guess providing sex on demand is a great way to achieve that lifestyle. If that makes you happy, fine.
    But don’t make the rest of us stay there.
    And if you’re stuck in such a relationship and it makes you unhappy, listen to yourself. Listen to what your heart is saying.
    Listen, and understand that there is another way of being. There is a theory in which marriage is viewed as a partnership, and its members crave a relationship based on dignity, openness, and respect.
    And it’s ok for you to want that.
    The man who cheats on you while you are down was unworthy of you to begin with. It’s not your fault. He would always have found a reason to cheat on you. Maybe not now, but in a few years, when the baby fat doesn’t all melt off, or he thinks you are too old or boring.
    Anyone who blames you for your husband’s mistreatment of you is not a friend. It can be hard to walk away from such friendships, because people will talk, and they can be very cruel. (I fully expect that this comment will be met with lots of allegations about the status of my private life. This is nonsense.)
    I walked away from a negative relationship in which a man thought he had a right to my body. Do you know what happened? Beauty. Beauty, dazzling and all-encompassing, and beyond anything I had ever known possible.
    Dear sisters: Believe in yourselves.

    1. THANK YOU!!!! I have been married for over 18 years and this describes it perfectly. As an introvert sometimes I just couldn’t do it – especially in times of otherwise overwhelming stress (because for me sex consumes energy, doesn’t provide it). And no it wasn’t fabulous for him (physical touch is his primary love language) and we did/do have to sort through it and find other ways to connect and express our love (physical doesn’t have to be sex) and respect. But you know what – he has his foibles too and I don’t get all up in his face about those. I don’t “give him permission” to be perpetually late or “allow” him to stretch out house project beyond what many would consider reasonable ;). I also don’t take this parts of his being as reflecting on his love or lack of for me. So yes we do love and respect each other and find ways to express that intimacy – regardless of what type of sex is happening at any given moment.

    2. I very much agree with you. I’m surprised by the comments here. It’s OK for sex to ebb and flow in a long term relationship, especially when you have kids. It’s not your duty to make yourself have sex you really don’t want, or to have sex when it’s painful. However, it is the responsibility of both you and your partner to notice if you’re getting distant from each other and find ways to bridge the gap, and sex may or may not be part of that. And that’s not just the woman’s responsibility!

      It’s hard for me to read some of the negative responses to articles like this because I’m finally coming out of almost four YEARS of painful sex (vaginismus) that began in the months after my daughter’s birth. Having sex either felt like a knife stabbing me in the vagina (no lie) or just wasn’t physically possible. I experimented with making myself have sex, since there’s lots of good old fashioned advice out there about “doing it for him” or “just do it and you’ll be in the mood,” and you know what, it just felt like I was forcing myself to have sex… which felt really awful. Of course, if you’re dealing with horribly painful intercourse (and the writer and many others aren’t so their situation is different), it doesn’t make you want to have sex at all. It freaks me out that there’s a physician who commented above who says she suffers from dyspaurenia (painful sex) and advocates “taking an ibuprofen” and forcing yourself to have sex. Since, you know, men need sex and you don’t want him to cheat).

      Anyway, my husband and I got through this not great experience together, and now we’re able to be fully intimate again. And it’s fine.

      People have to be willing to hang in there for each other in marriage, and keep communication open, otherwise it’s just not going to work. I have a family member who got cancer and has been going through chemo. Is it a given that she should force herself to be intimate, even if she feels like crap, so that her husband won’t cheat? Come on. Sure, sex is important, but what is marriage really about? I guess it depends on how your relationship works.

      Also, if you find you really have very low libido, it’s worth getting your thyroid and all other hormones checked. It’s also essential to take time for YOU – if you don’t take care of yourself, you have little to give to your partner or kids.

      Good luck everyone – we all find our own path, and that’s OK.

    3. Thank you for writing what I was too irate to put into words. While I was reading some of these comments I felt like I had time-traveled back to the 40’s; or possibly to a religious extremist cult. I feel horrible for the women the men commenters are married to, and I feel bad for the children the women commenter’s are raising. When you say things like “he will find this somewhere else” you are perpetuating a disgusting culture that needs to die. Now. I don’t want my son raised in a world where he will interact with people holding this point of view.

      1. *sigh*

        And I feel sorry for your sons who will expect that THIS is how their future wives are supposed to treat them

        Congratulations on condemning them to a loveless, sexless marriage

        And your daughters will experience what it’s like to be divorced with children – assuming they adopt the same attitude that having children justifies ending the intimacy that lead most men to marriage in the first place.

        When did so many women become so self-centered and narcissistic?

        You should be thankful you DON’T live in the 1940s when men were breadwinners only and women did nearly all the parenting. If you truly have that type of husband who does nothing to help or parent – then I think no sex is an appropriate response

        But if you have a good man who you no longer want to have sex with – well, just let him go. He deserves better – and you are welcome to continue to focus on your kids and not on having an intimate relationship.

        At least then your sons will see that if they are treated the way their mother treats their father, they need to end the marriage.

    4. All great comments – and I mean that sincerely. No true man wants to “take” what his wife doesn’t want to offer. That’s as insulting as the fact that it’s not offered (i.e. – husband is simply no longer a priority in your life.

      If you’re a woman and don’t want sex – don’t get married and preferably don’t have children

      If you are already married and have children then get divorced or at least allow an open relationship

      If you reject intimacy with your husband or reject allowing him to have intimacy with others, and you want to stay in a marriage, you are teaching your children an AWFUL lesson which is going to lead your sons to be as unhappy as your husbands and your daughters as unhappy (and probably divorced with kids) as you are or will be.

      I’m not being snide – these are simply the facts from a Man’s perspective.

      If he married you without a healthy sexual relationship then he has no one but himself to blame

      But if you had that and now you don’t because you’re using your kids as an excuse, well, then just do the right thing and allow him to find intimacy and happiness. And for those who say he should please himself – chances are he already does – but that’s no substitute for human contact – no substitute for the main reason most guys get married (not solely sex – but sex = love for guys so y’all are rationalizing why you don’t want your husband’s love anymore

      Oh I know – you think he should love and adore you while you focus on attachment parenting, co-sleeping, years of breast feeding – all those things you THINK you are doing for your kids but are always creating a new excuse for you to move closer to divorce

      Balance is key – make your husband as much if not more of a priority than whatever the latest “uber-mother” fad is

      If you are not having sex with your husband correct that now or file for divorce. It’s pretty simple – do it for your kids (sex or divorce – you choose) if that’s the only thing that can motivate you

  18. Really? Somehow I’ve managed to be a good mother and a sexual being. Go figure. Our daughter goes to bed at 8:00 pm every night. Plenty of time for adult interaction. And yes – (gasp!) she sleeps in her own bedroom a mere 12 feet from ours. There are no prizes being handed out for mommy martyrdom and our husbands are equally deserving our our love and affection. Despite being parents we’re intimate at least 3 times a week and the sex has never been better. And no, I’m not superhuman, just a normal working mom and wife who loves her child, her husband, and SEX! Unbelievable.

    1. What is unbelievable is that you are even a little surprised that your experience isn’t the experience of every other woman in the entire universe. Imagine that. People are different. Their experiences are different. Go figure.

      1. Agreed! Spend a little time in the scientific community and you will find that every woman is different. Go figure. The fact that this person uses the word “normal” discredits her entire post.

        1. Her full sentence is “I’m not a superhuman, just a normal working mom”. Geez! You discredit yourself by jumping on her, just because the rest of her post talks about having a happy sex life.

    2. Well said Bloome. You are clearly a wife who cares about her husband and her relationship. I’m sure he cares for you just as much. It is nice to see that someone understands that meeting the needs of the other partner in a relationship is important if you care about that person.

  19. As a husband, I can throw in my two cents here. My wife lost her sex drive years ago because of chronic sickness and the meds she needed to survive during the day. Couldn’t keep herself in shape for the same reasons. Also, she developed pain during sex. So sex stopped a long time ago.

    If blowjobs and handjobs work for some husbands, that’s great. Unfortunately for me the situation is too “clinical” to get aroused, let alone reach orgasm. Between her lack of interest, lack of desire, and her inability to keep herself in shape, there’s no intimacy there. I’ve cried myself to sleep for almost 18 years now because there’s no way out. I can’t divorce because she is a good person, we have kids, and she has immense health needs.

    I’m simply weighing in to say that yes, everything you’ve heard about men’s sexual needs is true, and ignoring them will destroy his spirit. Don’t underestimate how important it is to a)Keep yourself as attractive as reasonably possible (because we men are visual) so you ignite his desire, and b) Quench that desire with frequent sex. That cycle of getting him hot then satisfying him is deeply nourishing to a man’s heart, and will help keep him motivated to sacrifice and meet your needs as well.

    1. Dude, you need help. Please go see someone. I am deeply saddened to read your circumstance, it is more common than you might imagine.

    2. I hope you will suggest therapy with to your wife because you shouldn’t be in a relationship where your spirit is broken and there is probably enough love in your relationship that the problems can be worked out with a little guidance.

      You and your wife both deserve to feel fulfilled and it is possible. Keep trying.

    3. I am a lot like your wife. I too have had health problems (resolved, thankfully). I went into early menopause and gained a lot of weight, despite remaining active. Sex is horribly painful for me physically. And then there is the weird thing that has happened emotionally and psychologically–I find sex gross and embarrassing. This is partly because I do not feel attractive. This is partially because now that I am post-menopause, I have lost some of my physical desire (although not all–I still have feelings of arousal but they are not directed at any person). I also feel that part of it is because sex has no purpose anymore–when I was young, there was the issue of trying not to get pregnant, then the issue of trying to get pregnant (that didn’t work–adopted my kids). Even though sex didn’t always feel like it was about procreation, there was something special and powerful about the fact that it could create a new life. Now, I know without doubt, it will not–it’s a just a weird thing that people do. I love my husband a lot, and for the first 15 years of our relationship we had a very good sex life. He doesn’t have a super high sex drive, but I know he is bummed out about the infrequency of it. (last time was in July–2 months ago which is about how often it happens lately) He does not disparage my weight, but I am sure it must be an issue for him. I am working out a lot lately because I want to be in shape for myself, for him and so I can keep up with my kids (I didn’t adopt til I was in my 40’s so I am an old mom. I’m 51 now) I’m rambling here but this is the final point–I have been to 3 different doctors to try and resolve the pain issue, but there is really not much they can do. I use estrogen cream which keeps it from being unbearable but there is NO enjoyment for me in intercourse. It is basically all about suffering through til it’s over. That is the physical reality for me. I think I am afraid of getting into shape–what if he wants it even more then? When I think about having to go through that pain even more often, it scares me. Everyone says, “see a doctor” but they don’t believe the reality that not all sexual problems can be resolved. Last thing–I told my husband I would understand if he had an affair. he says he doesn’t want to, and that he loves me. We have fun together, we laugh a lot, we enjoy one another’s company, we love our kids. I wish there was an easy solution for this problem, both for you (from the man’s perspective) and for me (the woman’s perspective).

  20. Sara, thank you for this, I could have written it myself. I just want to affirm that you’re not alone and you’re not wrong. I don’t disagree with those in the comments who feel strongly about intimacy being important to a healthy marriage. Yet, it also can’t be forced. Low libido can have so many causes (breastfeeding causes low progesterone, one of the primary love hormones) and over-touching is real. You’re so right to have the perspective that this is such a short chapter in our stories as lovers. Ignore those who try to make you feel guilty, we do that to ourselves enough. Any partner worth loving and having will understand, or at least try, and will stay by our sides.

  21. I am not perfect and haven’t been perfect. We raise our children to leave our homes and create their own. When they leave, we are left with each other. Good intentions are just that, intentions. When God gave the institution of marriage to men and women it was for the betterment of both the man and the woman, not the children. Make sure you know the person and haven’t neglected the one who will be with you when the children have moved on with their own lives.

  22. When I was in this position with two babies in diapers, one of whom was chronically ill and vomiting constantly, I often felt so drained and over-touched after all those little hands relentlessly on me all day –not to mention the breastfeeding– that sex was the last thing I wanted. Finally hubby realized the way back into my pants was to step up his participation with the kids and household chores — in essence, to give me the gifts of help and time.

    His newfound commitment to doing the dishes after dinner every night — and watching him do the chore night after night without any words from me — began to re-awaken my dormant libido. Taking some of the nighttime baby-tending calls, sweeping the kitchen when it needed it, giving me time off from taking care of others occasionally (even if it meant I just got to watch grown-up tv in my room with a glass of wine and have some time alone without being at anyone’s beck and call for an hour or two), and generally showing up more as a partner in the family — that’s what got me hot for him again.

    Oh, and it didn’t hurt that he began sending me flirty love texts randomly during the day. I realized that he WAS paying attention to me, and I started to remember the playful, sexy feel of courting, and it made me more excited to be with him more frequently.

    I realized that part of the reason I had lost interest in sex was that I was not only exhausted from trying to do it all as a supermom, home-based business owner, cook, and housekeeper, but was also feeling underappreciated and taken for granted. Once this situation changed, my libido came back and then became supercharged.

    I guess I’m mostly saying that a little more help around the house may go a long way toward getting hubby’s other needs fulfilled. And it makes for a happier wife, too.

    1. THIS. And praising our husbands, listening to them talk about their day, letting them play golf or candy crush occasionally without guilt, at least smiling or fondling them when we pass in the kitchen, makes them happier and feeling less ignored and taken for granted. End result: they can get by on less sex because their love tanks are full. You don’t have to have penetration every day if you at least feel desired and loved.

  23. I think we’ve all felt like this. I think we should be having more dialogue about how sex drive changes throughout the childraising years, instead of blaming it on breastfeeding, cosleeping, bad wives, or whatever. Most of us are doing our best to keep all aspects of our lives together and it does little good to shame women that you don’t know anything about. Maybe if we all worked on our marriages – not just sex but talking kindly to each other, listening, making considerate gestures, praising each other to other people, etc – then a lot of the differences in sex drive would be resolved. Feeling loved and respected outside the bedroom does a lot for our feelings about our sex life.

  24. Dear Sara, I really appreciated your article, no truer words have been spoken! I’m a happily married mother of three ages 13, 10, and 5. Breast feeding and co-sleeping have been part and parcel, and my libido took the hit. The good news is, about the time my youngest turned 4 and I hit my early mid 40’s my libido woke with a vengeance! My hubby of 15 years is thrilled of course, but he was there with me the whole time and felt those “blue” times himself and we both were dissatisfied.
    Libido is a complex system affected by hormones diet and all of our daily interactions. I can’t help but think those lucky women who never feel it’s loss simply aren’t the kind of mother I’ve been.
    Also some of us choose to raise the next generation to insure they thrive and flourish, maybe we give more than they need, more likely we give them that extra that will ensure they are truly amazing adults.

    The travesty here is that so many women are so clueless and lacking in empathy, and in this day and age ignorance is no excuse. I feel that the social norms we blindly accept have created a gulf between expectations and reality. We see commercials and shows that say women should snap back like rubber bands and men deserve sex or they have the right to stray. When reality proves that committed and loving parenting results in well adjusted adults.

    How then do we stay happily married? with patience kindness and open communication. Men aren’t just about sex and there are many ways to statisfy a partner be it a neglected husband or a touched out wife.

    All the best to you and thanks again for the open discussion of that elephant in the room. Anyone who let the need to scold you should be pitied as they obviously aren’t caring compassionate adults themselves.

  25. The responses to this article are overwhelmingly why I’ve stopped reading Mothering. Mothering, as well, caters to this voice of mothers who are convinced really, really, really, that having sex is a job. That would make wives long-term contract sex workers. EVerythign feminism fought for us disgarded and the advice given to mothers by the women who think of sex as their job as wives, is not helpful to those who don’t want that kind of partnership or marriage. I don’t want a marriage where I’m so concerned if I don’t perform, my husband is out the door. A mature marriage where the two people are there for each other and their family — that’s for I and my husband, and our families. If you want to buy into “it’s just man’s biology” after other men, also, have written and persevered and been succeful at self-control and being faithful to their wives and growing deep love and intimacy maybe what some moms here are afraid to face is that their realtionships are lacking, and they could never imagine being in a position where they could lovingly, whimsically write a letter such as Sara’s This is so sad that Erma Bombeck style humor is unappreciated. I recommend reading Bombeck and getting a sense of humor and not seeing yourself as basically only worth being a wife and mom depending on how often you have sex or not.

    1. I feel so bad for the women who see it that way. I am not married and do not have children and my jaw was continuously on the floor reading these comments. It actually makes me feel sick!

  26. And this is how marriages die. Low libido or not it’s still a choice to be selfish or to be generous with your husband. Just do it anyway! 99% off the time you will be glad you did.

    1. I didn’t read all of the comments, but from what I have read, men and women BOTH need to have some kind of best sex and love life coaching. We were not taught, nor witnessed how to have this… I mean who had intimate conversations with parents about love making, pleasure seeking and taking care of the NEEDS of each other WHILE parenting. It is important to seek reliable professionals who can help in finding the time for each other while generating also a self-care practice, something women NEED to do for themselves. May I mention a name of a great website here?

    2. Your comment is scary. You sound like a medieval woman that thinks we have to please our husbands no matter what, even if we don’t want to or even can’t, due to our circumstances, just because we need to be “generous”. It’s like having sex was a duty and not a deep and free willing issue. How about husbands being “generous” (i think it would really be “understanding” and “loving”) and understand how pregancy and motherhood can (temporarily) disarrange and change your life? How about being supportive for the time it lasts and talk about it if it really affects them, so no one gets hurt? Isn’t it what love is about? I thought American women were more “modern” regarding women’s position in society. I’m leaving this page so terrified that there are woken like you who actually think like you… so much work for the feminists out there :/

  27. Dear Selfish Wives,
    Like you, we men have needs too. IF those needs aren’t being met then we will look elsewhere. Love, Sex, Respect are all things that we men need, we understand if a woman’s needs aren’t met that she is eventually going to leave, you in turn have to understand that a marriage is a 2 way street. Making children top priority all the time at the expense of the husband; is a sure way to ensure that they will eventually be raised in a single parent home, and a sure way to ensure that there will be another woman in the equation.

    1. Why isn’t it possible that he will keep trying to find ways to fix the problem with his wife instead of with someone else? How devoted can a person be if they abandon the person they say they love more than anything without doing everything they can to work with them to solve a problem for the good of the relationship?

      I understand not all partners are willing to work with their spouse even when that spouse is trying. That’s a bit different than what I think happens most of the time where if a spouse communicates that they need something from a relationship, the other spouse loves them and their life together enough to try.

      And if all else fails, which is a really sad outcome, cheating is not the appropriate response. Divorce is.

    2. Selfish wives? Really? Most women do so many for others every single day (their kids, their husbands) and have almost no “me time” (it resumes to taking a daily shower). They are always doing things for other people or their houses or their jobs, and you call them selfish because they are not at your disposal when YOU want to have sex? Especially in difficult times like during pregnancy, after giving birth or after a hard day with kids? Who’s the selfish now?

  28. thank you! I’m reading with tears streaming down my face (in the bathroom while I get a little “me time”).
    When your body no longer belongs to you it’s impossible to share it.. But I never imagined this is where we would be. Thank god I’m not the only one and THANK YOU for sharing and connecting with us.

  29. Wow, I finally made it to the end and I didn’t even notice any comments regarding supporting your wife. I’m know there are great, supportive husbands and dads out there, however I still see the majority going to work and supporting the family (awesome), while their wives take 98% responsibility for the childcare, house and frequently work part/full-time.

    I’m not downgrading the contribution of working, but I’ve experienced being the sole financial support and working up to 60 hours a week- Purely in terms of self-care, I’d take that any day over the later. I used to have time between appointments to get a quick haircut, 30 minute nail appointment, go to the bathroom alone, eat lunch out alone or with colleagues, heck I’d even be able to go to doctor and dentist appointments regularly (without regard for crazy scheduling, finding childcare or childcare expense).

    My husband also says men’s needs are simple and he needs a simple formula. My simple formula– understand I’ve had NO alone time, give me a break by getting the kids bathed and into bed, so I can take a relaxing shower (no one in with me or pounding on the door)… caring about your wife’s needs, can be like magic for your own. 🙂

  30. Stand by your Man!
    Give him two arms to cling to
    And something warm to come to
    When nights are cold and lonely.

    Stand by your Man!
    and show the world you love him
    Keep giving all the love you can
    Stand by your Man!

  31. After reading all of the comments, here is my reply.

    I understand about the need to speak the love language of your spouse even when it isn’t natural to you for whatever reason (upbringing, energy level, etc.). I don’t think that each partner gives the exact same amount at all times. I think it’s like one person does something in the moment for the relationship and then in another moment the other does which results in a balanced effort for the most part.

    However, I wonder about some things:

    – Why would anyone want to be in a relationship where the most important thing about them was whether or not they put out?

    – Are all marriages exactly the same?
    – Does every husband need sex every day, three times a week, etc.?
    – Do all men get their emotional needs me through sex alone or are there other things?
    – Are there men who get great sex every day, but still feel like the relationship is lacking something?

  32. I eagerly read this article because I experience revulsion followed by crushing guilt every time my husband tries to touch the private parts of my body. I don’t know why I feel this way — I hate it and I hate myself for hurting my husband’s feelings. But, I can’t help it. And, when I force myself to be intimate, it doesn’t feel like intimacy at all — I feel so depressed and alone. I love my husband, but I hate being touched. I also hate the feeling that it is somehow my job to allow him to touch me — that feels so icky, as if I have to crush my feelings into a little ball. (Reading articles written by the Duggar wives makes me want to wretch.) I want to be my honest and genuine self. Funny thing is — and I bet other women would agree with me — I don’t really mind intercourse. It’s the fondling that’s tough. I wonder what biological mechanism is at work, screwing up perfectly good marriages! It is really awful for everyone involved.

  33. Thank you so much for this article. It made me cry.

    My youngest is now nine. I wish it had been available years ago. I nursed each of my children for two years each, and life was VERY difficult with my husband. We had been by ourselves for 15 years.

    I loved my husband too, but after a long day of taking care of the kids, breastfeeding, taking care of family business etc… I was beat. Sex was the last thing I could think of.

    This type of information needs to be taught to mothers and fathers BEFORE the birth. Many of us have had the home births and the birth centers. We know how to deal with an inverted nipple etc… HOWEVER, this type of information is not shared. It might save countless marriages.

    If you have a husband that can be patient and not be selfish or act like a baby when you need him the most, treasure it! I didn’t have that.

    I am raising my son to be a little more self-less.

    1. Woah. So really. If you see your daughter-in-law is deliriously happy and the son you’ve raised is miserable, feeling unloved and unimportant, gradually becoming as out of shape and unattractive as he believes she sees him, you will impress upon him that he needs to be less selfish? That his feeling that a sexual life represents joy and youth and fun and closeness and makes him feel MANLY, more manly by far than taking out the trash or mowing the lawn, that these feelings are wrong? I should warn you from personal experience that sometimes those desires are belittled for so long that they just disappear. So you can say ok, ready now, I’m back, but that fire has long since died. The love is still there, but the desire has gone forever. Cherish the intimacy you had. It’s really not about ‘putting out’, but being present.

  34. i understand the heart behind this essay, and I understand (I think) it’s purpose. What I have a problem with is the reduction of a mans role in parenting to that of structural provider, and the extent of relationship needs to be mainly sexual. What do imagine the future inner world to be for your male toddler? Now extrapolate that to your relationship and you’ll get past a few barriers. Then let go of the audience of the observing mind.

  35. Please just make good on your promise that things will change, and do it quickly. Those months turn to years, and it’s not just your children who are changing. Your husband is in pain every time he feels rejected. The time will come where he won’t feel comfortable approaching you with his needs anymore. I’m not saying he will cheat, I haven’t. But do you really want him trying to fill the hole of loneliness this creates on his own? No amount of exercise, focusing on work, or alcohol can compensate for an absent lover. Porn? It’ll get him by initially, but afterward he will feel lonelier and depressed. I respect my wife’s decision so I don’t pressure her. I balance my love for her against thoughts of divorce. I worry that by staying in an unfullfilling relationship I am actually modelling a disfunctional relationship for our children. I wonder if I will be “that” man who files for divorce the day the last kid goes off to college. I didn’t marry my wife for platonic co-parenting

    1. I wonder if, for example, you went through a serious surgery and feel painful after it and it affects you mentally and emotionally, and your wife wants to have sex but you’re not in your best moment; you really can’t or want it. What if she decided she would cover her sexual needs with another man? What if she had thoughts on divorcing you because of it? What would you think or feel? My comment is not just because of yours but also because of all the terrible comments I’ve read from women (incredible!) who instead of backing each other imply women have to have sex with their husbands even if the don’t want or the are under special circumstances (like having a baby) to in order to preserve their marriage. We should all make the mental exercise of puting ourselves in other people’s shoes. Just some thoughts about this issue…

      1. You just don’t get it. If anyone (husband or wife) is feeling consistently rejected they will stop putting themselves in the position of getting hurt. Physically, emotionally, whatever; it’s the rejection that hurts. The person that feels rejected will eventually withdraw. This is BAD for your marriage. The thoughts of divorce come from the hurt, and the distance that grows over time.

        Put yourself in MY shoes, of a marriage that has been slowly growing more distant for years. There is no rejection in your scenario; and it seems like a very thoughtless post to make to someone in pain. I love my wife, but we are not as emotionally available, we are more guarded. Conversations revolve around the children instead of each other. There are now topics we both just avoid. You become parenting partners instead of lovers. And you worry that your emotional distance might get worse and start affecting your kids. THAT’S why thoughts of divorce show up.

        To the author, if you bother to read your comments section (and I understand why you may not want to…) Read “5 Love Languages” and find your spouses languages. If he is frustrated likely he needs touch. You can touch him lovingly in a non-sexual way. He will accept that you are tired of being hung on by kids. But give him a shoulder rub. Put your arm on his, or snuggle watching a movie, or go for a walk holding hands. Remind him if you aren’t in the mood that these aren’t an invitation- you want to touch him but maintain your space. Reassure him physically (again loving touch doesn’t need to be sexual) that you are not rejecting HIM, just that activity. And just for now. Good Luck.

  36. I finally made it to the end of all these comments. I agree and disagree with much of what was said, which I suppose is normal. It should go without saying that every body is different and everyone that is reading this article is coming from a different place in life and has different personal experiences that shape how they look at this issue.
    I look at this scenario from a different perspective all together. I am the woman, I had the children and I am the one who has over active libido… and I am the one with the partner who has lost his. I used to think I was all alone in this struggle but as I have gotten older…and bolder…I have discovered that there are many women who find themselves in this predicament. I will say this, being sexually rejected is one of the worst feelings I have experienced. I cannot imagine men who endure this for months, years, decades… I, in no way condone cheating but for the first time in my adult life was able to wrap my head around why some men do it. Cheating is never the answer, communication and teamwork would be ideal, but the emotional repercussions of being continually sexually rejected are excruciating. Yes, there are several methods for a person to “take care of themselves”…none of which are the same. Do our bodies go through changes during childbirth and raising children? Absolutely. However, many women allow themselves to get stuck in this place. More often than not, our libido issues come from deeper issues of self-confidence and self-worth (some people are spiteful and use it as manipulation but I don’t think that’s what was being implied anywhere here). The key word….self. No matter how much a partner tries to re-affirm their attraction, you have to feel it in yourself first. Women, take time for yourself. If you feel healthy, confident, sexy and rested…this will spill over into every aspect of your life. Being a mom, wife, homemaker, employee, etc. isn’t easy. Time is a treasure…but it’s about priorities. You have to make time in your life for what is important. Make. Time.
    Women and Men…I say this. If you want a successful marriage, make it a priority. Had you never been married, there would be no children to be exhausted from. A strong marriage leads to a strong family…when you begin putting your children before your husbands, you begin down a very dangerous road that usually ends in heartache. Does that mean anyone should have to be a “machine” that performs on demand? Absolutely not… We all have “off” days. The key is not letting those days turn into weeks, weeks turn into months and months turn into years.
    To the women who feel “disgusted” and sick to their stomach by the thought of physical intimacy…if you want your marriage to work, see someone. Try and understand why your body is doing what is, show your spouse that you are concerned, work on it together. That’s what spouses do. What not to do? Ignore the problem, alienate your spouse, and hope it eventually goes away and comes full circle. That is counterproductive all the way around.
    To the women who are passionate about how our bodies are our own…we owe nothing to our spouses, they should have no expectation on us whatsoever…..they’re “big boys”. I don’t know if marriage is what you think it is. Traditionally, the reason a person would even enter into a marriage (we’re talking a marriage for love, not an arranged marriage or anything along those lines) was to promise yourself…all of yourself…to another person and they would do the same in return. It is impossible to expect all of the benefits of a marriage with out being willing to make sacrifices as well. I don’t say that to imply that having sex is a sacrifice, I say that in regards to the fact that sometimes doing what we don’t “feel” like doing is a sacrifice. That being said…nobody wants pity sex, I don’t care who you are. Because doing what we don’t “feel” like doing is not just the act, but the attitude of heart that comes with it.
    I think the author had the best of intentions with this article, there was no malice intended…only her explanation of her current emotional state regarding physical intimacy. I think that had she worded the title differently, not implying that all women felt the same or experienced the same struggles, she wouldn’t have received near the amount tense comments.

    1. Thanks for your post. I also have a husband who decided that he didn’t want to have sex anymore. I thought this was fine – we were raising our kids together, one child slept with us regularly, and I thought we were a very happy family. But when a neighbor repeatedly made advances toward me, I ended up doing what I thought I never would, and that was having an affair. The affair brought out all kinds of feelings that I didn’t realize were there, hidden beneath the surface. This article sends off a “warning bell” in my mind – I think sometimes people make choices in their marriages, and they don’t fully realize what the consequences will be.

    2. Speechless, your post was pure gold, perfection. I wish that what you wrote was the main article instead. I read through all comments and people are coming from such subjective perspectives clouded with an over-abundance of emotion, and everyone needs to step back and look at the big picture. Marriage requires being intimate. Now I’m not talking about solely sexual intimacy. Intamcy comes in all forms: deep conversations, loving touches, laughing together, sharing joys and sorrows, being extra attentive to let the other person know they are appreciated and cherished, ect. But most especially there lies the intimacy where you experience true connection with your spouse, where you know who she/he is at that given moment (because we are changing everyday) and you are vulnerable and allow your spouse to see you “naked”, which is, to know your thoughts and fears and hope and dreams and challenges and struggles, ect. You both do that with each other and communicate (not just verbally, but with all forms of communication) that you love and accept your spouse for who they are right at this present moment! Even with their fears and with their flaws, you love them and accept them, and you truly know them, and experience ultimate connection and closeness with them. (Since there is so much misunderstanding, I am not saying you accept bad behaviors, ie if your spouse said something with an unkind tone or an unkind word then you say “I felt hurt when you said/did such and such” and give them the chance to apologize. And you forgive each other and aim to do better next time. So I’m not saying “accept your spouse even when he verbally abuses you.” No no no. Or anything like that.) but I am saying you accept that your spouse has faults and makes frequent mistakes just like you do. This is not a Hollywood romance movie. This is real life. If you want a spouse who will not make mistakes, will not have faults or shortcomings, then I’m sorry to tell you, you will never find that person; they do not exist!

      Anyway, sorry it’s hard not to ramble when that’s what these comment boards just really are: big long tangents of our dialogues with each other. So anyway, every marriage needs intimacy and you can figure out what intimacy means to you on a personal level and then what it means to your spouse and then what intimacy is for your marriage. If intimacy dissolves, then it won’t take long for your marriage to start to crumble. It will be in crisis; you may recover, but you will have to start rebuilding intimacy. But if you don’t work on it, then you will either live deeply unsatisfied in a love-less marriage, or you’ll get a divorce.
      So I am an AP mama to 2 kids under the age of 3 and I have been where the author is. I have been touched out. I have been completely drained and exhausted. I had postpartum depression. So sympathizing with where she is coming from and for all other similar mamas, I would give my first piece of advice: self-care. Whatever healthy ” need” (not “want”, I’m starting with “need”) you have today, make sure it happens. Work your day to accomplish it. If it is a bath by yourself for 30 mins. If it is a jog by yourself. If it is prayer. Whatever you need, start taking care of those important needs that fall under the category “self-care”, because from one super devoted AP mama, I can tell you that feelin guilty taking time for myself was only more destructive for my children than actually just taking a little time for myself. My main motivation came from thinking about my kids…I want them to take proper care of themselves. Our example is our loudest teaching for our children. I want them to have a rested, showered, dressed mama who eats well and exercises and is not a burnt-out, fatigued, irritable, moody, disordered lady setting a bad example of self-care. I know it’s hard. I know it’s not easy. I know we have to MAKE time for ourselves and we have to Work for it. I know. But if we have it as a main priority than we can use our brill the minds to figure something out to make it happen. Well now my baby just woke up and so I’m going to put the phone down to nurse him. He was a perfect reminder that I want to go to sleep so I can get up early tomorrow. Sorry to cut off so abruptly. My priorities lie elsewhere right now. 😉

    3. Very very well said for anyone who takes the time to read what you wrote. It’s all about trying to have a good healthy loving relationship.

      No man truly wants a woman to do what she doesn’t. That’s as insulting – if not more so – to know that one’s wife doesn’t find him attractive or desirable – than a woman who just can’t prioritize time for her previously beloved husband.

      And as evidenced from the article and several posts there’s a TON of reasons that women can cite for ending a physical relationship with the father of their children. Sometimes it’s a mistaken view that the children and a long list of other activities are more important than a healthy relationship with the father – sometimes physical, sometimes rooted in emotional or physical abuse from long ago.

      Indeed, aside from having a husband who is just a jerk and can’t himself communicate, or co-partner/parent, most of the “valid” reasons I see listed have more to do with women’s personal view of self and past issues than anything the man is doing.

      I hope they get help for this and I hope their husbands are supportive of their wives who do – because really no amount of “date nights” or even if a husband took over ALL child care and income earning duties, women with such deeply held issues aren’t going to change. Couples therapy is fine – as long as a woman herself is getting help for those personal issues which likely pre-date her marriage.

      And once again, it’s a two way street – but if a woman is rejecting her husband’s advances and it’s been weeks or months since intimacy – then you’re on a fast track to ending your marriage no matter how “justified” you or anyone else believes your excuse to be.

      The main reason I’ve offered my responses is because this type of article affirms that not having an intimate relationship with one’s husband is somehow “normal” and understandable.

      It’s not. Thinking that it is will ensure a toxic relationship and household at best.

      Both need to work it out – but if a wife is intent on “working it out” and maintaining a sexless relationship, do everyone a favor and end the relationships immediately and amicably – let the father of your children have what he THOUGHT he had when he married you. A wife who loved him, and was attracted to him, and would love him in the only way that men ultimately feel love – with the backdrop of a physical relationship.

      It’s not misogynistic for men to speak up, stand up and remind their wives that just because we embrace being equal partners as parents doesn’t mean we, like so many mothers, no longer need sex.

      And yes – as you remind everyone – the insulting comments of “use your hand” misses the point completely – and they might as well say “use a prostitute” because at least there will be some actual physical contact with an actual woman, as opposed to his own hand.

      In these situations, your husband wants you. You do not want him.

      If that’s the case the cause and solution lie within you. It’s not ALWAYS a two way street – though that’s often used as an excuse for women to maintain the sexless status quo. Something’s got to give – and if that “giving” doesn’t include you willingly showing physical affection, no amount of therapy of self-help articles or books is going to make a difference.

      He will find someone who loves him the way you used to. Accept it

  37. I felt like I myself could have wrote this article five years ago because I felt just like her…. Well, I caught him cheating after my third son was born and I am now divorced with three children to take care of and after reading everyone’s comments it does make me wonder….regardless of the fact that a real man wouldn’t do that, I can’t help but have some regret that if maybe I made more of an effort maybe I wouldn’t be struggling alone today and my children would have their father living with them. Now I live with that guilt instead. I do see both sides, but the whole thing just sort of sucks. I just think women who identify with this article should be careful where it may lead and keep that communication open.

    1. God… you don’t have to feel bad for what he did. Real men don’t do what he did to you. Men like him would have cheated even if you had “made more of an effort”. Sooner or later he would have done it cause that’s the way those men are; its not about what you did or didn’t do. Sex is not a duty. It must be absolutely free and willingly. You need to be “in the mood” for it. Sometimes circumstances are not the best, especially with 3 children, one of them a new born, like it happened to you. You should never feel guilty; he’s the wrong one here. Real love entails understanding and waiting when it is necessary. Shame on all those women here who made you feel guilty, putting women like men pleasers. He was the one that made a mistake here, not you.

      1. It’s worth a little reminder here that there are different forms of infidelity.

        I never cheated myself – though I had opportunity and I feel, justified cause especially after months without the least bit of physical affection (heck, even a back rub – some type of touch would have been nice a few times a year perhaps)

        But my ex was without question, unfaithful to our vows when she put not just the children, but a never ending litany of other people or activities before her husband

        You too are being unfaithful to your husband if you are not truly married.

        Being married has nothing to do with what a town clerk or even priest has to say.

        So if you turn your back on your vows to love your husband – and make no mistake, from hubby’s standpoint there is no love without physical expression of that love – then you’ve been unfaithful and you shouldn’t blame him when he finally responds to a woman who expresses love and appreciation for the man that actually WANTS you, even if you don’t want him.

        I feel sorry for the woman who second guesses losing her husband like that – she sounds like she’s caring for the kids all alone – and seeing as my Ex really couldn’t/wouldn’t even put her own kids before her unpaid “career” I spent 3 years being a father 6 out of 7 days a week while working 50 hours a week, I know how that is.

        He should still be a good co-parent and ideally should have his kids half the time, and make things as easy as possible for his ex as she is STILL the mother of his children. No excuses. Real men take care of their kids.

        But “Real Men” also deserve the routine physical affection of the woman who claimed to once love him.

        No excuses. If you are not in a physical relationship with your husband, you are NOT married and YOU are being unfaithful to him – and you should expect that your infidelity will result in a toxic marriage or better yet, divorce – where you can rest easy that he will no longer want to touch or love you.

  38. No. Let me just start with no not all men require sex everyday. My wife has given me two children, a loss of sex drive and has gained some weight. She’s still the same beautiful woman I married. I’m so glad I can reflect on my self from reading these comments and be assured I’m not a jackass. I cannot fathom the thought of making my wife even feel bad for not wanting to have sex (or gaining some weight from children). It’s just sex. It is not why we got married nor do I find myself wanting to get it from another woman. That’s despicable! She gave in once when she didn’t really want to, I had no idea, and I found her crying alone in the kitchen after. I sat her down to talk about it and she said she felt so angry for forcing herself and didn’t enjoy it. I literally felt shattered that she thought she “needed” to do it to keep me happy. So no, saying a man or marriage absolutely needs it or failure is ensued is nothing but a big pile of steaming bullshit! I’m sorry some of you women are forced to feel this way when deep down you don’t.

    P.S. My own hand works just as well as hers!

    1. Bravo!!! So relieved to find a comment like this after all the scary things I read FROM WOMEN. what’s wrong with some of you, really? We women don’t HAVE TO “provide sex” in order to have a “healthy marriage”. Sometimes it just doesn’t come that easy, especially after giving birth or having young children. Sex is neither a duty nor an obligation to keep “your men with you so he doesn’t look for another woman”. Seriously? Some of you sound like medieval women. Real men, like the one that wrote this comment, understand it and sees it just the way he wrote about it. That’s what real love is about…

      1. Sex is more than sex. It is how men feel loved and appreciated. It is how couples play, communicate and share love. Men need love and appreciation just like women do. It is the delivery that is different. Sometimes I don’t like feeding my kids because I am not hungry. Sometimes I am not in the mood for sex. That’s okay, but if more often than not I feed my kids cereal they aren’t going to be healthy. If I keep rejecting my partner I am not going to have a healthy relationship. I want a healthy, full, strong relationship with my husband and sometimes that means making him the priority over my kids.

      2. “We women don’t HAVE TO “provide sex” in order to have a “healthy marriage”

        We men don’t want you to “have to” do anything you don’t want to do

        But if you don’t want to have sex with your husband, you don’t want to be married – let alone have a “healthy marriage” – quite simply it’s not a “healthy marriage” if you’re not having sex. You can blame your husband, you can blame your kids – blame whatever you want – but don’t kid yourselves. Even IF women do feel that THEY can have a “healthy marriage” that doesn’t involve sex, I can tell you 99.9% of men would disagree with that.

        So I absolutely do concur – and while I think we men would take ANY physical affection we can get in these situations with as much enthusiasm as someone dying of thirst would accept a glass of water – even if offered without love or out of “duty” or obligation – really, what we crave is a relationship where you actually WANT to show your husband how much you love him – and for men that MUST be physical

        All the research shows that the BEST relationships involve physical intimacy about 3 times a week. More doesn’t hurt but it doesn’t improve the relationship.

        I’d say if it’s anything less than once a week, start conferring with a divorce attorney.

        Yeah, some might say seek couples counseling first – but unless you as DW are actually going to look beyond all the excuses and commit to a REAL marriage that involves physical intimacy, don’t waste your time or money with couples therapy where you just want DH to understand and accept that you can’t or won’t be physical because his needs are the lowest priority in the family, ranking well behind laundry or cleaning.

        Sorry for all the rants here but I can count a half dozen friends with kids of all ages in this same situation and wish someone had given a wake up call to my Ex LONG ago.

      3. I feel like you are getting caught up in terms like “have to,” when that is not the argument that most people are making. Let me try to come to it from the standpoint of my own relationship. I want sex and my wife does not. She does not have to provide sex to me. She does not have to provide affection. It is her body and her life and she is free to do what she wants. I, however, want sex more than once per month. If she isn’t willing to provide that and I don’t feel the balance of things that she does provide outweigh her unwillingness to provide sex, then I am free to either find sex in an open marriage or divorce her. I owe her nothing. Just the same as she does not OWE me anything. I do not owe her affection, a stable marriage, or financial support. If we can’t come to terms that make both of us happy, then we should go our separate ways. It doesn’t mean I don’t love or care about her, it simply means that I’m not happy in the marriage and choose to pursue a different life. She is choosing to pursue the life she wants in regards to not having sex with me, so I choose to pursue the life that I want, which means not being married to her. Why do you disagree with that?

        1. Well said – you and your wife went into marriage as a partnership and no doubt that partnership originally included an understanding of sex and intimacy. Perhaps sex IS inherently more important to men than women – but clearly if you married her she likely WAS once intimate but chooses not to do so now.

          She is not under any obligation to be intimate with you any more than you’re under any obligation to provide the things that she values as important, such as providing safety and financial security especially if she’s a stay at home mom

          Most women would be thankful for the opportunity to spend years at home rather in the grind of the workforce, raising their children – it almost seems like most of these women resent being moms and are intent on taking that out on their confused un-loved husbands

          As you say, it’s best that these couples go their separate ways

          And hopefully these same moms who so proudly say they don’t need their husbands for anything and most certainly don’t want their husbands to need or desire THEM don’t suddenly do an about face when it comes to expecting their husbands to support them in divorce

          Any parent – both men and women – can and should provide for their children equally. If women truly want to claim they are equal to men, then they shouldn’t then claim to need their ex-husband’s alimony post divorce either. These are women (they claim) who are strong and fully capable of providing for themselves at the very least – and hopefully provide for their children equally with their ex-husbands in child support and forgo alimony for themselves

          But we know reality is far different – those claims of equality and independence go out the door in most divorces with women happy to make their asexual relationship with the father of their children permanent – yet still expect him to give her hundreds and thousands of dollars a month on top of him often fully supporting his children

          Equality is something claimed when convenient and thrown out the window when these selfish women finally get what they say they long wanted – a husband who no longer desires them – yet one they expect to forever provide for them with no expectation of love or affection in return

          I’m glad some women here call out such women for what they are – but far too many defend such attitudes which are certainly at the heart of a great many divorces

  39. After reading this “open letter” and the many, many comments in response to it I must honestly admit that I am truly frightened for the future of my daughters and any relationships or marriage they may enter into if this is even a small sampling of the mentality of adults today or the ideas they are teaching their children.

    We have become a society of consumers. We consume that which we need, want, or desire and that which is left over is discarded. We have now moved this mentality into our relationships as a whole and it can clearly be seen in our daily interactions with others. Sadly, it seems to have also made it’s way into our marriages, and thus our bedrooms, creating an environment which is more prone to destruction than construction. With this being the case is it any wonder that more marriages end in divorce, which harms everyone involved, than succeed.

    If a relationship is to survive and thrive, any relationship, there are foundation stones that it must be built upon. Foundation stones that must be laid down with great care and consideration by all parties and then never moved or changed by either. These are, in no particular order:

    1. Respect – respect yourself and your partner and follow the golden rule in treating them the way you would like to be treated.
    2. Honor – Realize that a relationship is a commitment and hard work. Respect yourself enough to honor your commitment to the relationship even when the relationship hits a rough patch or the contribution to the relationship becomes, for a time, unequal.
    3. Commitment – This means work. If you aren’t willing to pour everything you’ve got into this relationship to do everything you can to make it work for BOTH of you then you should have made the commitment in the first place.
    4. Patience – Neither person is perfect, nor will they ever be. You must have the patience to understand that and work through the issues together to find what works best for both of you while best complimenting the other’s weaknesses. You both will have strengths and weaknesses, be patient and work with them and your joint successes will be greater than any solo attempt from either individual.
    5. Forgiveness – You will both make mistakes and you will both hopefully learn from them. The faster you past the blame game to the forgive/learn/move forward stage the happier you both will be.
    6. Integrity – Build your relationship on integrity/trust and never say or do anything to break that trust or harm your integrity. This should be true in all areas of your life. Your partner should be able to know without doubt that what you say you mean as gospel and it can’t be found lacking no matter who chooses to scrutinize it. That way when you say “I love you” they will never doubt it.
    7. Priorities – Each relationship is different but every relationship and those in it must have a place on your priority list. Hopefully it looks something like this but it may need flexing for short periods of time to allow for circumstances so long as everyone knows where they stand on the list at any given time and that is clearly communicated. Note: If your partner isn’t in the #1 or 2 spot the majority of the time your relationship will eventually cause hurt or harm and probably will fail based on current statistics. PARTNER>SELF>CHILDREN>IMMEDIATE FAMILY>WORK>EXTENDED FAMILY>FRIENDS>etc.
    8. Communication – This is the MOST IMPORTANT aspect of any good relationship. Communication between the two individuals must remain OPEN ALWAYS in order for two individuals to be able to function as a joint entity. Even in times of stress, anger, frustration, and hurt the communication must be allowed to continue. If harmful or hurtful things are said then Forgiveness may be required but communication is key. And as the relationship grows the communication can become both verbal and non verbal as that ability grows stronger and deeper. We’ve all gotten “the look”, we’ve experienced that quick groping touch, or that little note in our lunch or taped to the mirror. Communicate as often as possible in as many ways as you are able.

    These are just the basics though. Everything in a good relationship builds on these. Especially a good and fulfilling sex life for you both. And sex doesn’t just happen in your pants. It happens in your brain long before your pants and undies hit the floor. And as to the kids they need you and your partner to have a great relationship AND generally that requires sex. So put on a movie, put them down for a nap, or put them to bed for the night and forgo the cell phone games for 15 to 20 minutes and enjoy eachother. 15 to 20 minutes every day enjoying eachother, even if sex isn’t an option that day, will make a huge difference in your lives, your relationship, and the lives of your children.

    1. What if you don’t feel like having sex? What if you are so exhausted you prefer to sleep? Should we force ourselves to have sex even if we don’t want/can’t just to please your husband and fulfill your list of “marriage magic formula”? Every women/mom is different. You people need to stop shaming on others. Having low libido after giving birth or having small babies is normal for some women and it’s temporarily. Husbands should understand that. That’s what love is about. We are not sex provider machines. We don’t have to have sex if we don’t want to so our marriages don’t “collapse”. What a horrible approach on women some people like you have. Some of the comments here are scary. I thought Americans had a different approach on women and marriage. I thought they valued a bit more what being a woman is truly about and didn’t see them as beings forced to fulfill duties and please everyone. So sad…

      1. It doesn’t need to be “sex” per se

        I would hope that most guys would be sympathetic to post partum pain or depression and recognize that low libido isn’t uncommon.

        And it’s one thing for your DH to recognize that, yes, in the pecking order he ranks behind his kids, and ranks behind your welfare. Most “Men” will hopefully rise to the occasion with fatherly protective instincts to put the welfare of their wives and children first.

        For your part, be creative… your hands, your breasts, your mouth… all if actual sex is just too painful for you physically or emotionally. Heck, even a back or shoulder rub…

        But for your DH to learn that he ranks behind pretty much EVERYTHING else in your lives in this new pecking order – and that he must learn to obediently accept that, and never complain or *gasp* express desire for you for weeks, months, even years while the Uber Moms of Mothering spend years breast feeding multiple children (sometimes in tandem) and want to keep one or more kids in the family bed to the detriment of your relationship…

        Well, there’s just no excuse for that

        If you don’t have 5 minutes a day to give your husband the love and relief that he needs – often with the huge pressure of being the sole income to allow some mothers their wish to be a SAHM – then you shouldn’t be married.

        You broke your vow to love – no matter how heartfelt an appeal like this article is – you made a choice NOT to engage in any physical or sexual connection and have convinced yourself that you are completely justified in not setting aside 5 minutes for the man you once loved.

        You have deluded yourself that sex is not a priority in a healthy marriage – because it’s not a priority to YOU – but I can assure you it’s a huge priority for not-so-DH.

        Many men will attempt to communicate this with you – as I expect your own DH has – but it will fall on deaf ears with most in this column. DH will adapt and cope and learn to control his desire for you… primarily by no longer desiring you.

        He will not pester you for sex, or any other effort on your part to show him how much you love and appreciate him. His lack of desire will turn to resentment that he’s such a low priority in your life now. Other women may even let him know that THEY desire him even if you don’t. He may be able to turn away any such advances – thinking that maybe THIS week or THIS month or THIS year you’ll decide that a physical relationship IS an important part of a marriage and relationship.

        But eventually after years of excuses he’ll give up. His resolve to remain faithful to his vows when you break yours over and over, every day you persist in a “how dare my husband desire me” attitude may wane.

        And I don’t blame him one bit. Life is too short to spend years with a woman who likely lured such a man into marriage and family life with sex – only to pull that rug out from under him later.

        Best he find love and show his children what a good relationship is than stay in an unhealthy toxic marriage which, at best, will dissolve once he feels the kids are old enough.

        If between now and that time he winds up having an affair to stay sane, you might want to count your blessings as this could be the best of both worlds. You get to maintain the image that you’re in a good relationship… you get to remain in the house, supported (because if you divorce I assume you WON’T want alimony – as you are “equal” to men and thus don’t need anything more than child support, right? 😉

        But you don’t have to have sex with your husband. Another woman will offer him the love he wanted from you (I can almost guarantee that ). He returns home, calm and satisfied and ready for the next day’s rat race, a much calmer household and supportive husband too I’d expect – but unless you embrace an open marriage, even if he’s having a justified affair, he’ll continue to resent you for breaking your vow to love him for so long and often.

        Nothing I’ve said here I expect will be popular with the crowd – but I’m hopeful I may save a few marriages with these comments… and create a few new GREAT marriages/relationships for all those good men and fathers who finally say “enough” and seek out the relationship they deserve.

  40. Thanks a lot for this article. What you wrote is what true love is about. Thank you for making us feel better and put in words what we are experiencing/thinking/feeling. And for all those ladies out there talking about sex being a “marriage duty” and things like that, please, you sound like my grandmother. Love and marriage is a lot more than that. This is just a phase in our lives and it will be over, as everything in life. Things will eventually “normalize”. Thanks a lot again. Loved to read this

    1. Every situation is different and I think every woman is different. (So is every man) No doubt I think every man understands that there’s times when kids are the priority and his priority to feel love from his wife is low on the totem pole.

      But I have to wonder how many women here would be advocating in support of a man/husband who is simply too tired to do loving things for his wife. Probably very few.

      First of all, all men SHOULD be equal or near equal co-parents and co-partners in however child-/household/breadwinning roles are divided. Those husbands who are just sloth’s who do nothing? They get what they deserve.

      But for those father/husbands – if they have a wife/partner who can’t make 15 minutes a day (or even 5) to show the man who they supposedly love some physical love… well, I just have no sympathy.

      Women, somehow, have convinced themselves that sex doesn’t need to be a part of a healthy marriage – and are as adamant about not making their husbands a priority as some commenters in this article are, well, then you deserve to learn what it’s like to be a single parent.

      Perhaps you can re-marry with a guy who will never express any desire for you – and never want physical attention. That sounds like the perfect match for many women on

      But do your children a favor, and let the man you once loved out of a toxic marriage in which he receives little or no physical love – and let him find someone who actually WANTS to find 5 minutes a day or more to express her love and appreciation for her husband.

      At the very least kids will be with their father hopeful 50% of the time and they’ll see what a truly healthy loving relationship is all about – rather than continue the cycle of divorce. And you as a mother will have half the time alone to recoup and maybe even be a less tired more devoted single mom.

      I don’t advocate divorce normally, but any woman who breaks her marriage vows to love her husband (and yes – for men if there is no sex there is no love) simply should not be married.

      This is the path you choose to go down when you cannot make the man you supposedly love a priority for 10 minutes a day.

      Is 10 minutes a day to even feign the fact that you still have any attraction to your husband a lot to ask? Apparently so.

      But if you can find 10 minutes between all the chores and duties that come with being parents to actually engage in physical love of some sort, I promise you the dividends YOU receive in terms of a more supportive, engaged and loving husband will be HUGE.

      If days have gone by – or weeks – or months – where you adamantly refuse to connect with your husband – then PLEASE for the well being of your kids, divorce and let your children see what a healthy marriage is about with their father and step mother, while you take pride in knowing that you were justified in making your husband a lower priority than the dishes, laundry, cleaning… you name it.

  41. I wonder what she would write if her husband began telling her he’d reached his “listening threshold,” or his “emotional engagement threshold.”

    1. Or really, pick any “responsibility/role” that a husband and father has – and just decide you’re not doing that anymore. After all, you work hard to bring home the bacon and hopefully be a good co-parent.

      It’s amazing to read some (but not all) of the women in these comments. They don’t want to be intimate with their partner – but if he looks elsewhere for the intimacy he actually wants from YOU then he’s not being faithful to his marriage vows.

      But who was unfaithful first? When you married him you took vows – and whether spoken or unspoken any man getting married has an expectation that his wife will be intimate with him.

      Women have a right to decide not to have sex with their husband – for whatever reason or excuse, justified or not.

      But they need to be honest with themselves that when they put their DH’s as a priority that ranks behind children, a swept floor, your hobbieis/yoga time etc. etc. and you claim that you don’t have the energy or even 5 minutes a day – let alone 5 minutes a week or month – to show the man you claim you love some physical affection – YOU ARE NOT BEING FAITHFUL TO HIM

      You are cheating on him – not with another man – but you have put someone else or something else in the place in your heart or life that he once occupied.

      It’s not just that you’ve reduced the frequency of physical intimacy – you’ve ended it and are “cheating” on him with other people, hobbies or things.

      This is your right as a women. No one has any right to your body.

      But your husband was sold a false bill of goods and if you won’t give him the love he rightfully expects, then he should be allowed to get it elsewhere.

      Come to terms with the fact that perhaps an open marriage is best for you. Perhaps its a don’t ask/don’t tell policy allowing him to spend time with a woman who is actually attracted to him and actually wants physical intimacy.

      This could be a win/win – you’re touched out and don’t want anyone to “want” you anymore because as Oprah reminds us, mothers have “the most difficult job in the world” – and DH obviously doesn’t understand this. Let someone else provide that love and affection for him – you and he can remain “married” though again, you’ve broken your vows to love him, so maybe divorce IS better – but it seems to me all win in an open marriage where you and he can remain living together and taking care of your kids – but you simply won’t be expected to love him or be affectionate.

  42. Many years ago women identified themselves as homemakers, housewives, or work outside the home wives. Now it is Stay at home Moms, work outside the home Moms. The difference matters. The focus has shifted from our marriage to our Mothering. Of course our children need us, but our most important relationship should be our marriages. Sex isn’t just sperm release. It is the way men feel love, appreciation, wanted, and needed. There are times when we don’t want that intimacy, but if we say no, or reject our partners too many times they feel hurt and unloved and stop trying to connect with us. I don’t want a roommate for my husband and I don’t want him to feel unneeded or unloved by me. I have been married over 25 years. We have five children and have together suffered the worst things life can throw at us. But we have the best relationship and I know he would crawl over broken glass for me to take care of my needs and wants. I am blessed. He is also blessed and part of that has meant occasionally putting him before me and before the kids. It is okay to have sex when you know it will be a “quickie” and not do much for you. Sometimes you will even be surprised and get more out of it then you expected. But one thing you will get from sex, even when you are touched out, is a man that adores you, a partner for life that wants to also make you happy and a very strong partnership that will outlast your children being small. They grow up and move on quickly, but if you are lucky you will still have a partner and not just a roommate when that happens.

    1. As a woman 14 years into marriage and 3 children, I can say that I don’t have it all figured out. But, I do know that Stacy is speaking real world and long lasting truth here. Our ideas and feelings will at times be fleeting and change regularly. But, when you can find solid truth, and act on THAT, that is when you will find true peace. Just remind yourself that real, true peace is not when you got what you wanted right when you wanted it. True peace comes when we can acknowledge our needs along with those around us, and then blend them all together so that each person gains strength from each other. We all need to either be strong or, have the great blessing, of having those around us lend us their strength for a while; until we can regain our own.

    2. Thank you for this very compassionate response – you appear to be one of the few women on here who actually is able to empathize with a husband who spends years being told that he is the LOWEST priority in his wife’s life.

      There do appear to be women on these pages – and everywhere – who seem to get off on the power trip of denying their previously beloved husbands the physical contact that we equate with love.

      There are MANY future members of the First Wives Club here who may one day be surprised to learn that their husband is leaving them – or that he finally gave in to the offers of love and intimacy by a woman who actually values him since his wife does not.

      Yes, we abandoned husbands are very familiar with the “I’m too touched out” sentiment. The thing is, we watch as our wives go out of their way to MAKE themselves touched out. 5 years of breast feeding – sometimes tandem – years of attachment parenting and co-sleeping to make sure there is a little one in bed to serve as a buffer for a wife who is repulsed at the thought of the man she made that baby with *gasp* touching her – yet adamantly refusing to make a concession that allows her husband a place in her life.

      I am not exaggerating when I say my DOG was treated better than my wife than I was (and he wasn’t even treated all that well, being cast aside by my wife as a beloved pet once children came on to the scene.)

      The other excuses we hear is “I have no time for my husband” with no inclination to MAKE the time to save one’s marriage, or make other changes that might reduce her feeling of “being touched out.”

      And yet, just as Sara states up above “You say we prance around in our black yoga pants, looking hot and making you want us more” – so suffice to say we can’t help but notice that such women have no problem finding ample time for yoga classes and other social activities often claimed to be “for the children” even though they are clearly instances in which one’s wife makes herself a top priority while her husband continues to be last.

      So needless to say after years of being taken for granted and having our affection for the wives we once loved rejected, we develop a coping mechanism to deal with wives who don’t want to be desired by their husbands.

      We simply stop desiring them.

      And while some women might have some type of light switch of sexual appetite they might be able to turn back on years later when the kids are in college, once our desire is gone, it’s gone – it’s just a matter of biding one’s time and planning for divorce so we can go out one day and find a woman who WILL love us the way we expected our wives to when they made a wedding vow of love and commitment.

      I have many friends who are getting married and/or planning to start a family. I send them all this link – and suggest that if they love their women, DON’T get married and DON’T start a family. It’s worked in some cases – as I was one of those who received similar warnings from other friends experiencing this and I said “oh, my wife would NEVER do this to me” so I’m the poster child of a good father who simply got tired of being treated like a second class citizen for a decade

      Well, now I’m divorced. My Ex (who I’m fiendly with – but I’ll never BE friends again with a woman who treated me lower than dirt) who made such a point of pride of showing off all the ways she was a perfect mom – organic home made baby food that took hours to prepare… cloth diapers that took hours to wash – now only has her children 6 months out of the year.

      Think about that ladies. If someone told you that they were going to take your children away from you 2 weeks a month – 6 months a year – and that you could prevent that, simply by feigning love and pretending to be attracted to your husband – would you?

      I’m sure there are some here caught up in some bizarre power struggle who would still say a definitive “No! We shouldn’t be compelled to have sex.” And they are welcome to whatever award they receive for being able to claim their husband has gone the longest without so much as being touched.

      And I hope it’s worth it to them to miss half of their children’s childhood. I suppose they are proud of standing firm in refusing to return their husband’s affection for them.

      My wife did ask for “a second chance” – but what she didn’t seem to realize is that she had a second chance. And a 22nd chance. And a 222nd chance. So when she promises that NOW she will honor her wedding vows and love her husband, we both know she is lying. A full decade of broken promises and constant rejection told me what the outcome of that would be – you simply can’t trust someone who has lied that much by saying “I will be intimate with you when…”

      Unconditional love shouldn’t have so many conditions. And we know that our wives can find 50 minutes to spend on this site – but claim they can’t find 15 minutes to even pretend to love us. Even though I communicated all these issues very clearly, on average every few months, and I made dozens of changes to take on more work at home, in addition to carrying the stress of being the only person providing an income, she never once made any changes.

      She admits that if she knew then what she knew now – and how lonely it is to be a middle aged out of shape woman who only gets to see her kids half the year – she would have mustered the energy to feign love.

      For my part I have a new wife, and new family, where my children see a woman who clearly loves her husband and makes him a priority in her life. We pattern healthy, loving behavior for our kids in our blended family. And I no longer worry about my son settling on a wife similar to his mother – or a daughter who finds herself a single-mama because she treated her future husband the way her mother treated me.

      So my advice to all those men I’ve sent to this page is this: You’ve heard of a pre-nuptual agreement?

      Before you have kids, create a pre-natal agreement. If physical affection is important to you, that’s the time to be clear and up front about that in an agreement in writing that you both agree on. Maybe that includes agreements that the husband will bear the stress of providing all income and the wife will stay at home and raise the kids. But it should include an agreement on how often a couple will be intimate. At least twice a week would be my recommendation – and one’s wife breaks that covenant, clear repercussions can be spelled out in the pre-natal agreement, including a simple quickie divorce by which assets will be divided and she will waive alimony. At the very least it will be clear that the marriage is ending by her choice not to be physically intimate with her husband.

      And to those guys who have a woman such as this already, my condolences. Prepare for your divorce as she will not – can not – change, especially if you’ve shared your frustrations in the past and not seen any changes from her. Any woman who would allow things to get this bad is not worth being married to, let alone allowed to be a role model for your children. Get yourself in good physical shape and do something to minimize the financial hit for when you do divorce.

      Yes, be careful as you date again – there are women out there like these wives who are repulsed at the thought of their husbands adoring them.

      But I can tell you first hand there are some good women, devoted women – givers – who have no problem engaging in a loving relationship with their man while actually taking care of their children at the same time. And love is a wonderful thing that you’ve all been deprived of for far too long.

      She can be a proud member of the First Wives Club and take great satisfaction in the fact that no man desires them anymore – but don’t deprive yourselves of love anymore.

      The old joke is true – “why is divorce so expensive?” – Because it’s worth it! ;)-

      And it is. For your children’s sake, get divorced and find a woman who IS capable of loving you and your children. You will not regret it.

  43. I’ve been married for 8 month now. And what do you know i am a Virgin wife. When I want sex he just touch me then sleep. I’ve thinking of getting divorce. But I love him and I don’t know. I’m just getting frustrated and sad with my sex life . I’m happy btw with him. Only the S part that make me stressed..

  44. Blanket apology for rambling. Sorry. I googled “frustrated father and husband” and found this article. I’m heartened to know that this is seemingly a common issue. When you’re in the throws of it like I am it’s easy to lose sight of that. My marriage is crumbling (we just had an awful fight) as we speak and not just because of this. Financial stress and living in tight quarters is also at play. So I do completely understand that this takes a toll on many things including libido. My wife’s job is a demanding one with long hours and by the time she walks in the door she is for the most part fully depleted with just enough left in the tank for my son who’s 5 1/2. I truly do understand this and do my best to articulate this to my wife mostly to no avail. But this situation has become toxic and unhealthy. My son has taken my spot in the bed. It began as me doing my wife a favor. All three of us slept in the bed together but my wife developed severe skeletal issues mostly having to do with her back & neck. I’ve been out on the couch for 18 months. During this time I have plead progressively more urgently for intimacy with my wife and it never materializes. There’s no chemistry anymore. We went out for our 7th wedding anniversary a few weeks ago. First time we’ve gotten out in 8 months and it was great. I had an endorphin rush from having non-fish stick foodThis past weekend I tried to get a sitter for us to get out to keep the momentum going but we missed the window. I was upset at her inflexibility and her general lack of opportunism at getting out with me. Because I dared get upset I got a “f**k you” verbatim. I was crushed because I was so looking forward to seeing her dolled up even a little and to just be alone with her for a glass of wine. I was made to feel selfish and entitled. Even a cactus needs a drop of water sometimes. I don’t need a lot of watering but I can’t always be not just at the back of the line but blocks away from the black of the line. As a work from home/stay at home dad I take excellent care of our son and I do love him more than I could possibly express. But I was a husband first and she was a wife first. It’s beyond depressing that she doesn’t see time spent with me as time well spent. We go months sometimes without making love and it does take a toll on me. I don’t feel like it takes a toll on her though I could be wrong. Again apologies for the ramble. Our insurance company doesn’t cover couples therapy and my friends have heard enough. I just needed to type it out as it were for therapeutic reasons. Thank you for posting this letter. I’m not sure it speaks for my wife but it was nice to read.

    1. Amen brother. As I used to say, even my dog likes to be told he’s a “good dog” – which was more than I got as a supportive co-parent and partner.

      Look – I realize that there can be a lot of issues involved for women – traumatic birth – even trauma from childhood – and I suspect sexual assault for many of the women who have come to find sex a disgusting thought (being “touched out” by kids). So I’m not without sympathy having stuck by my Ex for 10 years patiently waiting out the infant years of 2 kids 2 years apart… then waiting out the toddler years – then the elementary school years.

      There was always a new excuse, though I look back to the early choices that many women made that makes them “touched out” as one of the root causes. Yes dear wives, you made a choice to co-sleep and breast feed for 2, 3 even four years or more. You made that choice to have a family bed with one or more kids in it, and to give up your body for childbirth and breast feeding, you tell yourself, for your children. Did really you not realize you were making a choice to end your relationship with your so-called DH when you called a time out on the physical affection that drew him to you in the first place?

      You say you’re selfless in this – putting your kids first. Honestly I’ve seen a large degree of narcissism with many moms, wanting to do to the trendy things of this nature to claim they’re the Uber Mom – overlooking the fact that the BEST thing they could do for their kids is create a happy home environment where their father doesn’t spend months, weeks, years in sexual frustration and eventual depression when it dawns on him that, despite her words, it’s clear DW doesn’t have the ability to love the way men need to experience love.

      Every excuse a woman has for neglecting her husband may be valid. That’s little solace when you find yourself in a bad relationship and toxic environment – or better yet, divorced.

      For those men and women who find themselves in this pattern, make it a priority to get things right – or start planning for your new lives.

      And yes, “getting things right” means overcoming your underlying issues that have allowed you to convince yourself that having a fully clean house (or any hobby or chore) is a bigger priority than expressing physical love for your husband or soon-to-be-ex-partner.

      For those good guys who have been taken for granted (the ones who are engaged co-parents and are supportive of their wives etc., who cook, clean, do the dishes, trash, care for and diaper kids, etc. etc. as true co-parents) there ARE single women and single moms out there who truly appreciate such men, and who *gasp* actually enjoy sex, quite frequently in fact!

      Life is too short to spend in a loveless sexless relationship. Teach your kids that!!! My ex had all the above excuses and more and expressed that motherhood left her just “not wanting anyone to want her”

      Well, she got her wish – and we’re both now happy, with the kids well adjusted because we continue to co-parent well. There’s no frustration between us now in part because I no longer have any expectation of affection and she doesn’t need to worry about being touched or wanted – and I’m pleased to have found a woman (single mother) who loves to express physical affection and who expects to be treated as well by her man as she treats him.

      So yeah – the “how dare you” express a desire for your wife sounds like a movie I’ve seen before and I know how that ends – and although she did finally “wake up” and attempt to reconcile, when you’ve seen the same promises broken over and over for a decade, you know you’re just deluding yourself that THIS TIME she’s going to change.

  45. This is over a decade too late for me, but for the other couples out there I have to speak up.

    Everything written is no doubt heartfelt – it also empowers other women to adopt the same attitude which WILL DESTROY YOUR MARRIAGE eventually. I don’t care how valid your excuses of being tired, or touched too much are – when you go weeks, months, even years, where DH’s needs are always at the bottom of the pile and are never met – trust is ruined and might not be repairable.

    There’s ALWAYS an excuse. I’ve heard them all and there’s a bottomless well for such women. If you want a partner or husband, give him at LEAST the same amount of attention that you give the laundry, dishes, or any other chore involving inanimate objects. To say it’s insulting and demeaning for any not-so-DH to know how low they rank doesn’t quite cover it – and I see women empowering other women to embrace all the sentiments of this essay.

    I saw the early potential of my ex to go down this road – and tried to be proactive, and even had her promise she’d never forget that the best thing a woman can do for her children is have a great loving relationship with her husband/partner. That promise was forgotten over and over for over a decade – and at a certain point any many will just look at himself and say “what am I, stupid for continuing to believe?” Fool me once shame on you – fool me a thousand times, shame on me.

    At six months junctures of little to no physical affection even this very laid back, supportive, co-partner/parent mild mannered DH would finally express frustration. Each time a conversation ensued about DH doing more and SAHM doing less work to care for the kids – and only THEN would affection be offered. Date nights were often suggested – which resulted in SAHM going to sleep even EARLIER thanks to a glass of wine, leaving DH alone, frustrated, and seeing future date nights as a pointless waste of money that resulted in high expectations but the same end result. Less work for SAHM, more work (on top of providing income and that stress) for DH, but no change in physical affection.

    Finally you stop protesting as it only results in more work and even less sex

    This was/is common among all of my guy friends – all of whom were GREAT attentive parents and partners, doing more to co-parent (as well as bring home the bacon and deal with the pressure of providing – so SAHM could BE a SAHM). Never have I seen a generation of mothers who have had men doing SO MUCH to help – and have been SO UNAPPRECIATIVE.

    Let me just say this. The ONLY reason men get married is to have better access to better sex. I’m not being crass – we’re hard wired that way (forgive the pun) – in fact I think we’re hard wired to desire more than one woman – especially if the woman we are with is no longer interested in sex.

    And for me, make no mistake. Sex = love – or at least if there’s no sex there’s no love. You women are different – you can continue to claim to love your DH even if you’re down to just birthday sex or maybe Father’s day if he’s lucky.

    If any woman has a thought of “I will be intimate with him when….” whatever it is, whatever he needs to do – however you are using sex as a tool to get what you want – if you are thinking that phrase, do yourself and your kids a favor and grant an amicable divorce. This expectation of “unconditional love under certain conditions” should be a sign that you are not meant to be in a partnership.

    If you can’t find the time and love for DH to express physical affection for him NOW you never will. You will always find a new excuse because there always will be one available as a parent. This is someone you once said you loved. Now not only does he rank behind children (and we all expect this) he ranks behind all your hobbies, all whatever chores you drone on about (did you think being a SAHM was not going to be work??) and how tough it is to be a mother today (honestly ladies – look back a generation or two and you’ll see it’s never been easier)

    Study after study shows that if there’s not sex at least twice a week – minimum once a week – the relationship is not going to be a good one.

    If you’re one of these women, have a heart to heart with DH, and allow him to seek out a woman who WILL show him the affection which you probably used to lure him into marriage in the first place. Remain friends – be great co-parents. But if you’re not interested in being a wife, don’t condemn him to a loveless marriage (and again, let me just say frankly, for any guy, if there is no sex, there is no love.)

    For those who think their relationship is fine without sex – or DH can endure the lean times – or DH doesn’t complain – that simply means he’s taking care of his physical needs elsewhere. And while that may be in the limited “alone time” you grant him (and for me, my “best” times were when a judgmental non-affectionate wife was asleep or away, as actual sex clearly wasn’t going to happen), it may also be at the hands etc. of another woman (personally I never cheated but also was shocked to eventually feel I would have been completely justified if I was)

    And if you’re not intimate with him and someone else is, again – don’t blame him, or even her. He’s seeking what he wants from YOU – but has no choice but to get that from someone else because you simply have bought into this notion that you are justified in not being physical – and that dirty laundry needs to be done, and a thousand other chores, hobbies or activities, before you’ll find time for him.

    Putting DH secondary to inanimate objects couldn’t be more insulting – take it from me. Take one for the team. Act like you like him occasionally. Act like you enjoy sex – THIS will pay HUGE dividends to you I promise.

    Because the #1 thing you can do for your kids (and all of this “I can’t have sex because my kids come first” attitude is about them, right?) is to maintain a healthy intimate relationship with the man you made these babies with in the first place.

    Let’s end the excuses. It’s too late for me and I couldn’t be happier compared to a decade in a sexless loveless relationship – and we’re co-parenting well with exceptional and well adjusted kids.

    But for those of you who agree with the original post – expect to be navigating a divorce and/or remind yourself that any DH who isn’t complaining about your lack of physical affection is getting it elsewhere – and you have no one to blame but yourself for that.

    I hope this advice/chastizement changes a few women. I love the all natural crunchy granola type girl that empowers – but many of you are obessed with being the Uber-Mama – spending time and money on everything from cloth diapers, to wooden toys, to attachment parenting (great way to kill intimacy right there along with co-sleeping!) to natural and organic eating and baby food, to natural clothes – the list goes on and on.

    And you’re not the least obsessed with maintaining the most critical element in your children’s lives. Happy, loving parents. Worse yet, you’re showing your children a pattern of how their parents – and eventually they – should act. Your sons will come to expect to be henpecked unloved husbands and your daughters will eventually be divorced and caring for children largely on their own – primary because YOU taught them that it’s ok to just boycott physical affection with their father for weeks months and sometimes years at a time – all because you are so tired and obsessed with non-important matters.

    And yes yes, relationships are a two way street and I see TONS of jerky, bad dads out there. I’m not talking about them. I’m talking about the good guys you have – who, I will affirm, will eventually find their way to women who actually appreciate them and express the same affection that you once did.

    Sorry if this is too blunt or crass, but I’m sad to say that the forums here contributed to empowering my ex to feel as the original poster did – thus ending our marriage.

  46. Can we have sex Alex Alvis please????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

  47. If any other mothers are here reading this, ask yourselves a few questions…

    How much time do you spend on the forums
    How much time do you spend reading self help books – including self-help books about your relationship?
    How much time do you spend obsessing and reading about parenting, eating organic, wearing cloth diapers, attachment parenting, co-sleeping etc. etc.?

    NOW – why can’t you find a fraction of that time to show the man you made that baby with that you still love him?

    You women are all being unfaithful – to your vows, to your husband and most importantly to your children – by putting all these things ahead of a happy healthy family

    You have convinced yourselves that sex and intimacy are optional in a marriage… or that unconditional love can only be given under certain conditions… but of course while many of you are unfaithful to your husband with your obsessions,you also band together with each other in forums like this to decry any husband who would do the unthinkable to you and actually desire his wife at a time when she’s self-absorbed with herself and her children

    Most of you will also band together and decry fathers who are as unfaithful as you are when they finally give in to a woman who wants to show him the affection you will not

    At least HIS actions are completely understandable – and justified if he’s been receiving the treatment many women here describe.

    If you just spent half the time you spent reading this article (or any forum or self-help or parenting book) showing your husband the physical affection he hopefully deserves, you’d find yourself in a MUCH better relationship with a much more supportive co-parent.

    The “I don’t have time” or “I’m all touched out” all come from choices that you made to put your relationship with our husband as the lowest priority in your life. That’s fine and that’s your choice – just don’t complain about the consequences of your choice.

    And no – real men don’t cheat but even real men have their limit when they are not with “real women” who have the ability to put their narcissistic tendencies aside and occasionally consider someone else’s needs other than their own (when they obsess over the latest trend for their children this is NOT a magnanimous act of sacrifice – this is mothers enshrining themselves as martyrs for their own narcissistic glorification)

    It’s really a shame. There’s a lot of wisdom on this website and forum – but there’s also a lot of damage being done to relationships, marriages and in the end, children when one sees some very irrational thinking portrayed as perfectly rational.

    I’m glad to see there’s a few women here who have spoken out in favor of holding their men in high regard in their relationship and marriage. The rest of you have every right to make the right choice for you – I’m just inclined to agree with those who say you never should have made the choice to get married and start a family in the first place if near celibacy has a place in your vision of a strong family dynamic.

  48. Dearest Husbands and Partners,
    (Dear not so dearest wives who are trying to justify abandoning the men they once supposedly loved)

    We’ve created these amazing little humans, who are basically our love in walking, talking form. So cool and awesome! We couldn’t have done it without you! Thanks for the greatest gift ever…motherhood.
    (Um – you don’t exactly make us feel too appreciated… especially when so many of you are SAHMs while we have the pressure of working all day, providing for all of you, PLUS doing all the things as equal co-parents – and doing this all while being sexually rejected by you…. just sayin’)

    You probably never expected your wife to find another guy…especially one who’s shorter, balder and drools a lot more than you. But when we gave birth and experienced the heart-bursting, breathtaking love that comes with sharing our body and looking into the eyes of that tiny person we created, it happened.(So when you tell your firstborn “I won’t love you any less when the new baby comes” that’s a lie, right? Because you kindof told us the same thing when you begged for a baby, but now it’s a completely different story. And am I really supposed to feel better that you’re basically admitting infidelity – just not with another man?)

    Our hearts have the ability to give boundless love and as our family grows, our love multiplies. It’s true – you did have our total heart and soul when it was just us. But when that first baby took his first breath, his little soul crept into your body and took their portion back. Being someone’s very life force – the person they depend on, feed from and cling to for dear life is very physical. Sure, we used to be up for fooling around all the time: morning…night…in silly places that later gave us a funny story to look back on…we celebrated our love frequently and carefree. Things aren’t exactly the same now. (WOW – you sure seem to have a lot of free time to craft such a poetic justification of celibacy. By the way, you know the “being a mom is the toughest job in the world” card you got for Mother’s Day shouldn’t really be taken literally, right? Would you like me to list all the jobs out there that don’t allow you to remain in pajamas all day?)

    Our bed is no longer just “ours” and we don’t seem to have the time these days to lounge about lazily, taking our time to enjoy each other like we used to. Of course bedsharing doesn’t mean we can’t have an exciting sex life – who needs a bed?? We know you’re up for it anytime, any place. But are we? Some of us – yes! Bring it on – especially in the morning or afternoon. Some of us might find that we’re in the mood late at night, when little people are sleeping, toys are put away and the house is cleaned up. And- just as normal – there are those of us have reached our “touch threshold” for the day and have no interest in anything more than conversation and cuddles. (Please be sure to read THIS sentence very carefully. If you are sharing your bed with children and your have reached the point of non-intimacy where you are reading this article – then REMOVE THE CHILDREN FROM YOUR BED and re-initiate a relationship with your husband. And by all means – LEAVE THE TOYS ON THE FLOOR and TAKE CARE OF YOUR HUSBAND. You all really seem to have some crazy priorities.)

    Please be sure to read this next sentence very carefully: This does NOT mean we don’t love you and don’t think you’re the most handsome guy in town. In fact, we do have fleeing thoughts at random times during the day of kissing you (and sometimes even an erotic dream here and there). But by the time the chance arises to …make something else arise… we’re ready to collapse, relax and not. be. touched. by. anyone. (Yes – we’ve heard this many times. All of those choices you made to portray yourself as the image of the Uber Mom can be tiring. Is it actually news to you that being a parent isn’t just tea parties and playdates? We may indeed be the most handsome guy in town. Try not to be jealous when we enjoy the flirtations of women who actually MIGHT desire us since we know you do not, except for a few fleeting moments of the day, probably when there’s a child in bed between us)

    We never thought we’d hear those words from you, darling husband. But 2 kids and 5 years of breastfeeding later…the sentence was spoken. It sounded crushing…and caused a lot of guilt (which is a frequent visitor to us)…but not totally surprising. You don’t have little people sharing your body. You couldn’t possibly know the feeling of not wanting to be physical with the one you love. (You breastfed for 5 years? Let me guess – because it’s healthy for the child? I’m a breastfeeding advocate as well, but if that’s a barrier to routine physical intimacy with your husband, then it will NOT be healthy for your child when you’re a divorced single mama, working full time because as one who is equal to any man, you surely won’t be demanding alimony. And you probably co-slept with your children to further ensure your poor husband wouldn’t THINK of touching you in the middle of the night? NONE of this is “being a good mother” in case you haven’t picked up on the theme.)

    This time in our lives won’t last forever. Our children won’t always need and want us moms in such a physical way. This is a season in our story, a fleeting moment in the grand scheme of our beautiful life. There will be years of dating, flirting and rolling around in the sheets- just the two of us- in our future. Our hormones will eventually level out and our libidos will someday rise to your level (watch out!). We totally appreciate your understanding and patience. (Um, excuse me… you have time for yoga? Aside from the millions of women out there who have neither the time or money, you have the money and time for yoga, but you have no time for your man? At all? To the level at which you felt a need to justify this with a well thought out blog post or article? So 5 years of “patience” while you put the kids between the two of you, co-sleeping and breast feeding. Do you think it gets EASIER with MORE time with elementary, middle school, high school students? You think there’s MORE time for privacy? That you’re running around less? I’m going to guess you’ll ALWAYS find time for your yoga classes – but I’ll wager even more on the fact that you’ll ALWAYS find a new excuse to deny your husband the love he craves.)

    We were thinking… there might be some simple things we could try to keep our connection- maybe a weekly date night on the couch to watch a favorite tv show together? You could try that old yawning-arm-over-the-shoulder trick… and I could try relaxing and letting you put your arm around me. (Seriously? All that we do to provide for you, to let you lead a life obsessed in motherhood – probably SAHM – and doing yoga while we carry the weight of providing for the family – that’s not enough to justify any affection without a date night? After 5 years of “patience” I think you can throw us a bone (literally) without having to re-enact Lady and the Tramp, which is exactly how you make us feel)

    Maybe we could even try to make out sometime, like we used to in those early days of dating when we felt tingly butterflies encircling our stomachs (the ones we knew before baby kicks). (“Maybe we could even try to make out”? Don’t even tell me you’d start making out with your husband with 5 year perpetual blue balls and NOT allow that to escalate to sex. Butterflies in the stomach? That’s more like a kick to the nuts)

    We adore you, respect you and are thrilled to share this amazing journey of parenthood with you. Hang in there, hubbys – those little people who have stolen our hearts will give a little back at a time and allow you to have their mom back someday. (Um – no, you most definitely do NOT adore us – nor respect us… if you did there wouldn’t even be an article of this nature. And those little people who stole your heart are only going to grow more demanding – so forgive me if I’m not surprised when another 5 years have come and gone and you’ve come up with MORE excuses – though I’ll probably be gone by then anyways.)

    With all our hearts (oh, minus the parts stolen by our offspring),
    (“Don’t worry my first child – just because we’re having another baby it doesn’t mean I’ll love you any less – it just means I’ll love you only half as much! Just ask Daddy. He knows!”)

    Your Loving Wives
    (um – no… you’re not. That’s the point. Signed – your soon to be happy ex-Husbands, if we ever grow a set of balls ourselves to respond in the frank and honest way I have here… which WILL eventually happen, I assure you…)

  49. “You say we prance around in our black yoga pants, looking hot and making you want us more.”

    This phrase alone still amazes me. I think it captures the essence of what we’re talking about here. You make time for Yoga but not for your husband. I rest my case your Honor!

    It’s a perfect illustration and reminder to all husbands that women/mothers are always able to make themselves and whatever their “yoga” is, a priority (as they should) but have no desire to make their husbands a priority the way they did to get him to marry them, let alone have kids.

    Which just serves as proof that the issue isn’t a lack of time – it’s a lack of desire or will to fulfill your vows to love your husband and a delusion that the consequences of your choices won’t be to teach your to seek out their own toxic relationship.

    Your husband clearly ranks well behind “yoga” and pretty much everything else, as a priority in your life and your husbands and all of us know it.

    You want everyone to tell you “that’s ok!” – but it’s not ok – unless you only want to see your kids 6 months out of the year (and indeed I think many wives who reject their husbands in fact secretly and desperately WANT to be members of the “First Wives Club” who see their kids only 2 weeks out of every month, and are consciously or subconsciously sabotaging their marriages – but I digress.)

    Since most of the moms on Mothering seem to be a “yoga” type of mom, lets’ just pause and consider that this is an important part of your week or day for rejuvenation (yes, some of you do yoga every day but still claim to have no time for your supposed DH)

    Realize that for your Dear Husbands, who once loved and desired you before you made a practice of rejecting them, that THEIR “yoga” is generally any intimate time with YOU that you might deign to spend with them. For a man, if there’s no intimacy there’s no love – but ultimately sex allows them a small oasis to let go of the stresses of being a bread winner/father/husband for just a bit – and gives them the energy to continue taking good care of you and your children and do a difficult job that is only more difficult without love and appreciation.

    Quite simply, it’s in your family’s best interest (and your family includes your – not just your children) to ensure that DH gets HIS “yoga” routinely.

    And it might even help your husbands to feel like they are actually still loved and AREN’T the lowest priority in your lives.

    Like you and your desire for yoga, they want and need this rejuvenation every week, if not every day. If they don’t get their “yoga” don’t expect them to be walking around like happy husbands and fathers – because they aren’t and will never be – some are just better at feigning happiness or living in denial of their loveless, sexless marriage. Indeed it’s in a wife and mother’s best interest to keep her man happy and relaxed – especially if he’s the main bread winner balancing that heavy load of responsibility on his shoulders every day.

    So think of yourselves as Yoga instructors for your husbands and imagine if YOUR yoga instructor treated you the way you do your husbands.

    Imagine first that 5, 10, 15 years ago, whatever it may be, you found a Yoga teacher who just completely resonated for you. He was the best yoga teacher ever and after attending his Yoga classes for years, you decided that you wanted to commit to this particular yoga teacher, agreeing that you’d be loyal and never go to someone else. Quite frankly you LOVED this yoga instructor.

    Then, almost as soon as you made that commitment, something changed. Every time you asked to do Yoga, be it daily or weekly, your once beloved Yoga instructor told you to simply “go away”… that he didn’t have time for you… that he was tired from all the other yoga students clamoring for his time… that he was all “touched out” and that he now has other commitments, all of which come before you, the devoted committed yoga student.

    Oh he’ll tell you that he still loves you – and even that you’re his favorite yoga student. He just simply doesn’t have time for you – or at least all the other students in his life are more of a priority than you. But this is normal he’ll say – and in a few years maybe he’ll again have time for you when his other students are older.

    Perhaps the yoga instructor would have had some recommendations for you to help foster some “private” yoga time with him. Because whatever you were doing before to deserve to be his student, well, now that’s simply not enough. But he might suggest that you bring him gifts or take him out on dates and maybe THEN he’d have some time to do yoga with you. Or maybe not – don’t hold your breath.

    Now of course you can’t go to someone else and he knows it – you wouldn’t break your vow, even though this yoga teacher you once loved is now treating you like dirt. Heck, he says, if you don’t like the fact that you’re no longer allowed in yoga classes, well, you should just do yoga yourself – alone. You have a hand…. legs etc. ;)-

    Just take care of yourself, right ladies?

    That should be just as fulfilling – right? Be a woman and take care of your own “yoga” needs. Maybe in a year or 10 when the current yoga students are older he’ll begin to have more time for you. Maybe not.

    You of course keep communicating with your Yoga instructor that this is NOT what you had in mind when you agreed to devote yourself to him as your one and only yoga instructor. Open communication is key of course – and having explained how important Yoga is to you, you’re hopeful that he’ll change and begin to take pity on you.

    But that falls on deaf ears. And of course other Yoga instructors rush to his aide. He shouldn’t be compelled to do yoga with you, they say! Yoga instructors have the toughest job in the world and shouldn’t have to do yoga with anyone they don’t want to. Tough luck that you’ve committed yourself to them. There’s plenty of other places to go get Yoga of course – but you wouldn’t think about going there (because of those vows that YOU are keeping but unfortunately your yoga teacher is not.)

    Besides, a “real woman” would never cheat on her Yoga instructor, even if he never did Yoga with you for weeks, months or years, right? You took a vow not to cheat on him even if he “cheats” on you by giving everyone else his attention except you.

    After a few years of showing up for yoga each week but being rejected all but a few times a year (maybe you’re allowed to do yoga on your birthday – or maybe Mother’s day for a short perfunctory yoga session that’s a little less than fulfilling seeing as it’s done out of obligation and not love) you start resenting that yoga teacher more and more.

    The truth is you want to do yoga with that instructor more than ANYTHING – but the fact of the matter is that he just doesn’t have the time or desire for you. You’ve got to somehow get that “old” desire under control – so you stop desiring that yoga instructor.

    In fact, since you have that Yoga instructor around you all the time (wearing his tight fitting yoga clothes almost to tease you even more!) your coping mechanism to deal with that harsh reality will eventually be to actually RESENT your once beloved yoga teacher for selling you a false bill of goods at the time you committed to him. Otherwise the frustration of being denied Yoga every day can be overwhelming. Better to despise them rather than have a Yoga instructor have to deal with being “desired” by you.

    Meanwhile you know there’s other yoga teachers out there. In fact, they think you’re pretty great and they all want you to do yoga with them. You refuse – at least at first. You’re loyal to your Yoga teacher, even though he treats you like dirt… but after years and years and years of being treated badly, you begin to realize – your Yoga teacher doesn’t love you at all – and if he did he wouldn’t treat you so poorly.

    So you begin to consider doing yoga with someone else. I mean really, this is a basic need of yours. You WOULD have wanted to be loyal but that’s a two way street – and every time you ask to do yoga with your “loyal” teacher, he rejects you once again in different yet the same ways. And with those little kid yoga students becoming teens, demanding even MORE time and eating away at even MORE of your privacy, you’ll realize that promise of “when they get older” was just another stalling technique by your Yoga teacher to keep you in the fold awhile longer.

    No matter what you do – or how much more of the work you do to support that yoga studio, taking on all kinds of chores and responsibilities in the hopes of actually getting some time with your Yoga teacher – nothing changes, and you realize nothing ever will – and that you’d be a fool to engage in more conversations that always end with you doing more and your Yoga instructor doing less – with no more intimacy than before.

    So NOW how many of you are prepared to remain committed to such a Yoga teacher? Any of you? Why would you? It’d be like saying “I LOVE Yoga and it’s my favorite thing to do – so I’m only going to go with this one Yoga teacher who I used to love but now has NO time for me – see how loyal I am?”

    That’s crazy but that’s exactly what you are all doing to your Dear Husbands.

    So here’s a suggestion. You like Yoga. You make time for Yoga. Routinely.

    Your husband likes you. He’s happy to make time for you. Routinely.

    You’re not willing to make time for him. Routinely.

    CHANGE. NOW! Before it’s too late.

    While it would be better if you actually desired your husband, at the very least, for every hour you take to do yoga, you should give a same hour of intimacy to your husband.

    What you say? You don’t have time for Yoga AND your husband? Well then cut back on Yoga and make time for your husband (yeah I KNOW that’s going to be unpopular here)

    Try to remember the spirit, if not the words of your wedding vows…. To have and to hold… to love and cherish.

    Are any of you doing that? It doesn’t seem like it. It seems like you blatantly and proudly broke your wedding vows.

    Well, it’s not too late for you all to avoid joining the First Wives Club. Heck – if you had a sudden change and showed your DH that you DO appreciate him (and show him physically – routinely) then most guys I think could write off the years of being used and abused by their “Dear Wives” and be happy to engage in the intimacy they desire with you.

    But wait too long and that desire of theirs to be with you will be gone forever, lost in the insulting reality that no one is a lower priority in your life than DH.

    Justify and rationalize this all you want – but this is what you’re doing – and this will end in what at best is a toxic marriage, and at worst (though indeed I think this is best) your DH divorcing you and finding a good woman who has the skills and sanity to actually care for children AND show her husband that she cares for him.

    And I promise you, that if you are truly a good man and good father, that such Men are very much in demand among single and divorced women. Perhaps your DW will trick another man into marrying her and providing the financial care for her and the children – but we all know that as soon as he is “locked down” any intimacy will stop – forever.

    And of course it’s within any woman’s “right” to choose when and who she is having sex with – it’s also within any Man’s right to get his “Yoga” elsewhere when you refuse to abide by your vows to him.

    I hope you’re all proud of yourselves. You’re doing all you can to subject your sons to an abusive relationship and your daughters to being single mothers down the road when they treat their DHs the same way you’ve treated yours.

    Bravo. Take a bow – and do your DHs one big favor. File for divorce – and let your man finally experience the love he craves and start a NEW family with a new wife and step kids that is based on love and trust that a good woman would never treat her man this badly.

    And enjoy your lives as single mamas, seeing your children only 6 months a year, secure in the knowledge that, no… no one has a “right” to have sex with you and you are perfectly within your rights to treat your not so Dear Husbands as badly as you’d like.

    1. It’s weird that you place such high emphasis on sex as the primary way you’d like to be taken care of. For my husband, from experience, I know it takes near last place, and is not really something I think about in terms of “taking care of him” versus…having a mutually beneficial experience; perhaps that’s because of the way we have sex but…at any rate.

      I don’t know about this man but, for the women reading this comment, you might be surprised to find your husband values well cooked consistent meals, folded laundry, a clean house – and most of all taking the children off his free time more than sex. I think this commentator is far in the minority when it comes to this disproportionate emphasis on sex.

      1. Bear in mind that we’re not talking about women who have a healthy relationship with their husbands – we’re talking about women well outside the norm of what all experts and polls say a healthy marriage is – sex 2-3 times a week

        Now that’s not to say that you can’t find a man with the same love of celibacy as the author or others here have – and such a man – any man really – likely does appreciate having dinner cooked, kids well taken care of and a relatively clean house

        But is all of that really asking so much either? I mean we’re talking about a lot of SAHMs here who seem to think that feeding their kids (and perhaps husbands) and keeping the household running is deserving of some type of medal – and precludes them from having a sexual relationship until every dish is put away or toy in it’s place and her “me” time with Yoga taken care of…

        All of these things (aside from care for the kids) are really trivial – especially when they are taking a place in your marriage well ahead of your husband. If you have 15 minutes to pick up toys – and choose not to spend that 15 minutes showing your husband you love him – then Hubby rightly resents that the toys or whatever excuses you cite are more important than showing him you love him

        In fact I can’t think of a more demeaning and humiliating message to send to your husband than that – i.e. no sex if there’s a toy on the ground that will no doubt be left there by a child again tomorrow. Or pick any one of the other “excuses” in this thread that all show how much of a non-priority your husband is, ranking WELL behind inanimate objects on the floor

        If you truly think that cooking a dinner or picking up toys is on par with the physical relationship with your husband that almost certainly helped lure him into such a passionless marriage with a passionless woman, then you certainly don’t understand the vast majority of men out there who, when polled said they desire sex on average every other day.

        There are also plenty of dads out there who cook and clean and are full partners and parents with their wives as well – in my case I was an engaged parent and if my wife said that her unconditional love could only be offered under the condition that the house was clean, meals were ready, laundry was done and folded, food shopping done etc – well, then I took care of all of that if only to remove the excuse that my wife was using as yet more conditions on her unconditional love

        Yet she always found a new excuse of why she couldn’t or wouldn’t offer any physical love or relief for me despite the fact that I was a good provider, working 50 hours a week and doing as much, if not more, as a parent and home-maker than she did.

        So it is not a “disproportionate focus on sex” when there is already a disproportionate amount of celibacy in the marriage

        As all the research shows, most husbands view sex as a need – not a want (in fact that’s why most got married) – yet so many women choose to ignore that and place themselves on the road to divorce where they will miss half their children’s lives

        I’ll give the author credit for admitting that unlike some women, she lacks the capability to both love her children as well as her husband – and that the notion – at least for her – that “love doesn’t divide – it multiplies!” is a lie

        But bear in mind that when we are talking about women who effectively become celibate after kids, we’re talking about women who likely have mental health issues as well as issues with intimacy, as evidenced by their inability to empathize with husbands who are limited to having sex with the women they desire just a few times a year

        In the case of Ms. Sites, she’s clearly overwhelmed by just 2 kids – whereas other moms here note they have 3, 4 up to 6 kids and still have time to care for kids as well as be intimate with their husbands (these are clearly women who are mentally well)

        If that’s the case then their emphasis on getting their wives to address their mental health issues in order to put intimacy back into the marriage isn’t “disproportionate” at all – it’s of paramount concern that she get well and find a way back to routine intimacy with her husband

        I can tell you first hand that wives who spend years resenting the fact that their husbands desire them eventually will get their wish – their husbands will stop desiring them

        And at that point it’s too late

        So I urge women to look at the choices they make – choices to co-sleep and breast feed for YEARS knowing that it’s killing their libidos and their marriages – and yet continue practices to justify their own mental illness and fear of intimacy

        Some women have the capability to do those things and still be intimate with their husbands. If you’re not one of them, stop those actions that kill your libido and available time for hubby – and get your priorities straight – or start planning on being a part time single mama

  50. As a man in a sexless marriage with a 2 year old daughter the comments here are alarming. I am the primary breadwinner in my household while my wife and I split duties for my daughter. We literally have sex about once every 3 months. I am understanding that my wife simply does not want to have sex but, to be honest it is depressing. I never thought marriage would be like this and I really can not leave because of my daughter (who I love dearly). I remember older married men hinting that marriage is like this but, I did not want to believe it. Sadly that was a mistake on my part.

    I wish that I could force every young man considering marriage to read these comments. They are a ringing endorsement for why marriage really has no value for men. Think about it. In 2016 what value in marriage is there for a young man. If it fails we lose our children and usually a portion of our financial livelihood. Often we are portrayed as villains for have high sex drives in our youths (as if nature did not make us this way for a reason). As a single man today there so many more outlets that men can enjoy without marriage.

    1. First of all, I could have written these words myself 10 years ago… and wish I’d made the call to divorce sooner back when my kids were young enough to be spared most of the trauma that can be associated with that. Don’t wait that long to take control of your life and experience real love and affection – for your sake and your child’s.

      I’ve encountered many divorced parents and kids – and most of those too young to remember their parents married (or fighting – or even just unhappy) are very well adjusted… they don’t know anything but a hopefully functional co-parenting situation. Getting out of a dysfunctional marriage sooner than later is in your child’s best interest in my opinion.

      While sitting your wife down for a wake up call talk is warranted, my advice is to first talk with a divorce attorney and find out what you are looking at in terms of alimony and child support. Some of that may make you feel like divorce isn’t financially feasible. But I’d say keep in mind that old joke “Why is divorce so expensive? Because it’s worth it!”

      And really, what price tag would you put on your happiness, and your ability to pattern a healthy relationship for your children? You might think staying in a loveless/sexless marriage (and for guys, sexless IS loveless) is in the best interest of your kids – but you’re really only going to be putting kids on the road to have the same relationship you do with your wife by staying with her til they’re older – and that’s not helping anyone.

      But first of all, ask yourself if you’re doing what you should as a good husband and good father – too many guys do nothing to contribute in the realm of child care and raising and I don’t defend such guys who think their wifes should reward them with affection for being bad fathers/husbands. If you’re not a good father/husband then this is YOUR making – but I know first hand chances are you’re in a select group of good husbands and fathers who are just marginalized by narcissistic spoiled wives.

      But the reality is, if you are a bad wife – then you are also a bad mother (just as if you’re a bad husband, you’re a bad dad). You just can’t separate these two roles – despite the fact that so many moms in the comments above seem to think you can or should.

      I saw the signs of this in my ex-wife even before children – though hindsight is 20/20. She was a narcissist who was only capable of seeing things from her very narrow view and sense of entitlement that if she didn’t have new cars and a big house and was happy and not over-worked, that was my fault and not hers for opting not to work for it for herself.

      I talked with her openly and clearly every 4-6 months – noting how I and every man has a very basic need affection/appreciation/respect – and yes – some form of sexual release with my wife. The notion of “well use your hand” would be a great argument to NOT be married.

      She’d agree to change and do better but ONLY if I made certain changes as well. This pattern continued over and over – with me making more and more changes and her making none.

      So of course I did change and did do more – as the prospects of having sex is a good incentive. Frankly I think many wives use this to manipulate their husbands, and continue to withhold – but I digress.

      When you go through that 50 times and she doesn’t change, it becomes more and more insulting. You’re investing EVERYTHING with her and she gives you no opportunity to make a “withdrawl” to comfort and support you. That creates distrust that can never be repaired.

      My ex was a SAHM and I worked 50 hours a week as the sole provider (and lots of pressure comes with this) – but I took on more than my share of household and parenting duties because she said those were reasons why she couldn’t have sex. I took on laundry, and dishes, and the second I walked in the door I took over child care/bedtime duties (as I wanted to spend time with my kids anyways and I welcomed a shift from the stress of work – stress made more stressful by an unloving wife who refused to help de-stress me.)

      Every 6 months when nothing changed we’d raise the issues again – and she’d agree to change, but only if I did MORE to help take things off what she felt was the monumental stress of being a SAHM. And once again, she didn’t change at all. She’d demand more “date nights” to put her in the mood. (Apparently the fact that I worked so much and did so much as a father were not valued by her – at least not enough for her to show me any love or affection. That alone was an incredible insult to my very soul.)

      So eventually I stopped those conversations – I knew how that ended. More work for me, the same lack of sex – just more animosity for me for allowing myself to be used and manipulated. Since my desire for my wife was the source of this added stress, I simply stopped desiring her. I stopped initiating intimacy – as I would generally be rejected anyways – and she of course would never initiate. Every now and then over the months perhaps she felt guilty. I could generally count on birthday sex, father’s day sex – but that was about it. Perhaps two other times a year when she sensed she’d pushed me too far with the asexual relationship she’d “be nice”.

      For fun, google Louis CK and see what he says about divorce – it’s all true! (And also the most pathetic HJ ever – which is about what my sex life was like if I was lucky – just very insulting to have a wife who was so disgusted at the prospect of doing anything sexual with me)

      Fast forward to today. I’m divorced. I have custody of my kids half the time (as any father should want – and will be granted by the courts in a heartbeat. I’m in a relationship with a very caring, loving woman, who is a mother herself (divorced from a man who was not a good father or husband – so she can recognize and value that I very much AM a good father and husband – and she shows her appreciation of this accordingly.)

      And with no embellishment I can say now, with a good woman, that we have more sex in one week than I had with my ex-wife in an entire YEAR. She gives me more BJs in ONE WEEKEND (mainly during “those” weeks) than I ever received in an entire year.

      Women here might think that’s a crass assessment, but any guy will tell you these are important things that we do in fact equate with love (as long as they’re done lovingly and not out of some warped sense of duty or chore, making affection for their husband akin to taking out the trash)

      Sounds like a lot but it’s not tough to exceed the affection of a narcissistic asexual ex-wife who always had more reasons or things more important in her life than her husband and the father of her kids. Heck – she found time a few times a week for Yoga – but always said she had no time for me.

      My girfiend now actually finds enjoyment and satisfaction out of making me feel good! Just as I do with her (and I always did with my ex – though when that’s a one way street, after a few years you just feel… “used”)

      Ultimately my ex ALWAYS had a new excuse as to why she couldn’t or wouldn’t have sex (or do anything to satisfy me sexually). The house is dirty, dishes not done, kids might wake up, I needed to get a vasectomy (risking impotency as a complication for the prospect of de facto impotence since she never would have sex anyways). There was always a new excuse or an example of how MY very basic husbandly needs and desires were always LAST in the pecking order – even behind inanimate objects in our lives such as car repairs, etc. – She’d always say “We’ll have sex when….” but even with those criteria were satisfied, she’d come up with a new excuse.

      Ultimately her view of unconditional love had MANY conditions – and whether they were met or not, there was never any payoff for me.

      To say this was insulting to me is an under-statement. I was depressed, over-eating, unhealthy, and drove off to a stressful job every day even more angry than the day before because my wife had no interest in relieving that stress – only adding to it with another evening upon return when I’d get my hopes up for affection – only to be disappointed again.

      Lather, rinse, repeat.

      I think she never really thought I’d go through with divorce – and maybe I really should have made clear that – yes, that IS where this is heading – I DO NOT BLUFF. And I do think if she knew then what she truly knows now – that it’s not easy being a single mom – and that she no longer can spend my money without a second thought – and that being away from her kids 6 months a year is also difficult – perhaps she would have put a little effort into meeting me halfway.

      If I had to do it all over again with her I’d have put my foot down stronger and much sooner, taking charge of my life, and my wife – who truly was manifesting symptoms of mental illness. Aspects of a “taken in hand” relationship might have worked (as my girlfriend now LOVES it when a man acts like a man and takes charge, albeit with love, trust and respect).

      But making clear to her that she was living in a wawrped dream world where she could compartmentalize me and my sexual desires for years, wasting my income for things that she claimed were for the kids but were really just for her – as she clearly did, was unhealthy – and that while kids DO come first, their father IS or SHOULD still be a priority in their mother’s life. It’s really not complicated.

      Basically there’s nothing more important to raising healthy happy kids than healthy happy parents – and that she’s a bad mother if she’s a bad wife. There’s no other way to put it.

      But talk to a lawyer – do what you can to shelter your savings if that’s a concern. You will of course always support your children. She needs to learn to support herself and shouldn’t bank on you paying alimony to always support the spoiled lifestyle she now leads. Just because she’s a SAHM now doesn’t mean she can’t work and support herself. Remember – she will have 6 months kid free once you’re divorced. Alimony – if there is any, as she should not want or expect any man to provide for her, other than providing for her children – might not be that bad. Make sure she remembers that every dollar she takes as alimony is a dollar taken away from her children too.

      When you have your ducks in order, sit her down, explain to her that she has a choice to love you or you will get divorced. She will insist she in fact loves you – but she just doesn’t want to have sex with you. This of course is just more bull that these types of websites help foster – and of course all her “sisters” from Mothering will join the chorus of telling her that she’s right and your wrong.

      The time for words is well past – you need to see action and change on her part.

      But perhaps the only thing that MIGHT get her attention – since she’s probably like most of the moms who have put so much of their ego into BEING the uber mom and forgetting that means she needs to be a good wife too – is the prospect that she will be without her kids 6 months out of the year.

      Let that sink in with her. Let her decide if her “right” to be an asexual wife is REALLY important enough to have her only have access to her kids for just 6 months out of the year. You need to be willing to take on that responsibility yourself too – but it really is in the best interest of your kids to no longer be exposed to the toxic relationship she’s created here.

      As they say in Shawshank, “get busy living or get busy dying”. The status quo is dying. Start exploring divorce – whether you proceed with that or she finally realizes that her asexual lifestyle will result in her only having access to her kids 6 months out of the year (because so much of her ego is caught up with being an uber mom in all likelihood) THAT might prompt her to wake up and show her husband some respect and appreciation.

      And if divorce is the option and you have to pay alimony and child support, so be it. Money isn’t everything – your happiness is. And I can tell you that being in a relationship with a good mom who is also a good and attentive wife who loves and respects her Man is worth every bit of the trouble and money it’s taken to get through this divorce.

      And the best part is, now my kids get to see what a healthy functional relationship is. My son is less likely to marry a woman like his mom and thus be subjected to the same life you and I had to endure – and my daughter is less likely to find herself the single mother that her mom now is as well – learning that fathers and husbands should be respected and appreciated and treated with the love they deserve.

      As great as this woman is, I’ll never get married again. If it’s important for the kids to THINK we’re married, maybe we’ll just tell them we are – but there’s no upside to the legal and financial entanglements that marriage – the notation that a court clerk has in their records – brings.

      Good luck to you! Love is awesome! Find it – with your wife – or if she still refuses – with another woman!

      Get busy living!

      1. It’s really sad to see that the entire comment you made was one big statement of hate towards your ex-wife, who is the mother of both of your children; not one kind word did you find for her, but even more telling is that in the long diatribe against her, there’s only 1 small blurb mentioning the new woman in your life, whom by your own admission does everything right. I respect that you had a bad experience, but don’t you think you’re overgeneralizing a bit? ALL the mothers commenting on this blog recommend that women neglect their husbands? EVERYTHING your ex-wife did was “bad”; “everything” is great about divorce and your children will be entirely psychologically unscathed by the process?

        I understand that perhaps in your case this was the best thing for you – but think of some innocent man reading these comments thinking that his marriage is going to suck just based off of your experience? He could very well meet the 2nd type of woman you here listed, and then just wind up paranoid and defensive and ruin what could otherwise be a good thing with externally absorbed bitterness.

        I’m not trying to do victim blaming here but, you couldn’t entirely have been surprised that a woman who would commit a lot of time to self-care before marriage (yoga, etc.) would continue the same narcissistic trends thereafter? Could it be that you perhaps are attracted to narcissists, but then expect the narcissist to morph into a submissive mother/wife figure, when the two ideals are simply not mutually sustainable? Many men like to date bitches – it’s a thrill for them, and then when it’s insufferable to actually live with a person who continually puts themselves first, the attraction fizzles out and then they start launching accusations against the entire opposite sex. Don’t you think that’s a little rash and puerile?

        At any rate, I wanted to also very clearly state for any women reading this that, while this “seems” to be a huge issue for men – there are many women in similar positions as the male libido naturally starts going down in a man’s late 30s. When I asked my husband what he thought about this previously he said, “I just don’t get those men, sex is just part of a marriage for me – it’s not really *that* important to me.” Of course, it may be that we haven’t gone huge lengths of time without sex, and that we don’t have anything against masturbation but…it feels like there’s more going on here than just lack of sex, and it’s definitely not a case to generalize about.

    2. Hey Averie, just wanted to give you a more balanced input than this Jack person. I’m sure you yourself don’t really mean what you’re writing. There were some periods of time that I was frustrated with my husband’s low libido (he is just passing 35 now – and, well, of course there’s a big difference from 10 years ago). I understand what it’s like to be sexually frustrated but, considering the entire worth of a marriage based upon this very contained subcategory seems…rash. Maybe talk to your wife about the reasons that she doesn’t want to have sex with you? For us, my husband’s back is a difficult hurdle; he hurt it in his youth and if we have sex very frequently, it can actually hurt him. Sleep deprivation is something we both have in common. And, slowly, as we age, declining hormone levels (ironically, of course, I’m at my prime at the moment being in my early 20s but…I think it’s important to think through it even when the body might otherwise lead to rash decisions). You mentioned a child. I strongly disagree with Jack – divorce is invalidating for children, and there are people enduring much much worse things in marriage than occasionally not having sex, and doing it for love of their children. I’m not saying to go full-blown martyr but, probably with communication and remembering what really matters, things can come back into balance for the both of you. Even if my husband never had sex with me again (a state I would not enjoy), I would still stay with him, partly because he is a man of character, and even more importantly, because he is the father my children love. I am sure your daughter has no greater person of importance than their Mom. Hindsight is 20/20 and I know you can find the strength to make it work.

  51. This is really funny. We still have sex about twice a week (which personally I think is insanely low), but, for the most part we don’t blame each other, and, it’s kind of a non issue, since, due to one of our children’s tendency to wake up at night, we both are, to some extent, living zombies. Nothing kills sex like sleep deprivation. I once woke up my husband in the middle of the night to have sex and he was super pissed like…what on EARTH are you doing this is my limited SLEEP time! But for the most part I often share the sentiment. Still, never really gone super long without sex but…it’s odd to read incensed comments by men shunning entire marriages over what…sadly…with age…becomes more and more trivial. Probably both of our hormones are fried after 2 kids. Have to ask our local farmer what they are doing….apparently they have 12.

  52. When I married my wife nearly 12 years ago we both understood something very fundamental to our relationship. That each person has something that makes them feel loved. For my wife it is words of affirmation. Regardless how she might feel about her breasts or tummy or the way she fits into clothes I shower her with sincere compliments. Frankly she gained weight since we first dated. I don’t care. She looks more beautiful and radiant every day even after one kid and two miscarriages. I love every bit of her and I let her know it daily. Just as my wife knows that my love language is physical touch and quality time. Yes sex. It’s not crude or distasteful or a widely duty. Sex is not work or at least shouldn’t be. She knows that if I am down or depressed or sad it’s because I haven’t been with her enough or felt her touch. Nothing is more affirming to my sense of worth especially in my marriage than when my wife makes love, has sex, fucks the energy out of me. Just like I know she feels like the most beautiful woman in the world when I tell her so and continue to. Sorry ladies but you don’t compare. And frankly every husband should think that way. I digress. The entire point is that when we said I do before God and all or witnesses, I was saying I no longer live for my self. I no longer belong to myself. I belong to you. You are in control of me just as I am in control of you. You belong to me just as I belong to you. Does that mean enslavement? No and shame on you if you thought that. This whole it’s my body you can’t force me. You are right a husband should never force but you are wrong to think it’s still your body. It isn’t. You vowed it belonged to your husband. I am glad I belong to my wife. She is the only woman I trust in this world with my heart and body. I don’t fear her. I don’t loathe her. I don’t worry if I will ever get sex again. Because she knows if she doesn’t care for the body and person that belongs to her then she could very well lose her other half. Just like I know if I don’t tell my wife she is beautiful, spend time with her and with our children (she gets the biggest thrill watching me play with the kids and being a father to them. Usually to the point she tackles me after they get to bed) I know she will eventually fade away. I would be braking my vow and in sense breaking her. I never ever want that to happen and work on that every day. I got married to her because I could no longer function as myself. She filled a part of me I never knew I needed. Same for her. I will never deny her what she so richly deserves no matter what life throws our way just like she will never deny me what I so richly deserve no matter what happens. That’s marriage. Self sacrifice for the other. Selfish bullshit doesn’t belong in marriage. Self (ish) meaning one single. Catch the point? its not all sunshine and roses but we work hard at making our family and marriage work and we have more sex now than we had when we first got married. This don’t touch me bs is ridiculous. There are deeper seated issues at hand. If you don’t want to be touched you don’t want a marriage you want life insurance incase something goes bad for you.

  53. Some of the comments on this page make me feel profoundly sad. How is forcing a woman to go against her biology ok with so many people? Why is giving a man a blowjob or handjob considered “intimate,” especially when the woman doesn’t want to do it? Come on!

    I’m the mother of an eight month old who is still breastfeeding, and my sex drive has been fleeting at best since I had the baby. We have sex once every couple weeks or so. The thing is, THERE IS A BIOLOGICAL REASON for my lack of a sex drive. It is very common for lactating women to have a reduced sex drive. I’m also not ovulating yet, so that should tell you something!!! Whether we like it or not, hormones play an important role in sex drive. When we ovulate, our sex drive goes up and our body prepares for sex. So it makes sense that while we’re breastfeeding and still not ovulating, we might not want sex as much. This goes hand in hand with the feeling of being “touched out” by the little ones we care for. It also makes sense from an evolutionary stand point. If we hold off from having sex for the first few months after having a kid, we delay getting pregnant again and can focus our full attention on the survival and development of our child.

    Yes, my husband would like to have more sex than he is currently, but he’s not a one-dimensional piece of meat. He values our family, loves our son, and loves me. He knows that when I start ovulating again and our son gains a little more physical independence, I’ll probably be “in the mood” more often. In the meantime, we have sex occasionally and I try to make him feel appreciated in other ways—like by telling him how awesome he is and giving him plenty of hugs and kisses. Sex for the sole purpose of ejaculation is not intimacy, and it’s not a required “function” of being a wife. Being a REAL partner to someone means you weather the ebbs and flows of feelings and hormones. We’re in it for the long haul, just like we were when we had to live in different cities for a few months. I’m glad I’m with a man who understands that.

    1. Ok, so lactating ‘reduces’ sex drive. Does it permanently eliminate it? I don’t think many of they guys here are complaining about a few months of ‘reduced’ sex. My youngest is 13-1/2 – can you guess how many years it’s been (don’t forget to add 9 months)?

  54. Lots of good feedback here – even if we all don’t disagree. If I seem one sided it’s because the views of most of my “brothers” – especially those supportive of all their wonderful “natural mamas” and SAHMs, often find themselves labeled as some sort of Neanderthals for being evolutionary hard wired to actually (*gasp*) desire their wives/women which of course has its roots back to the days of – well, Neanderthals!

    And very clearly there seems to be a disconnect among many mothers who think I’M the aberration and that their men are just as zen as they are with an asexual relationship – be that for 10 weeks, 10 months or 10 years (as it was in my case, as there was always a new “excuse” as to why “putting the kids first” also seemed to mean “putting their father last.”)

    And to those who think I hate my ex – we actually get along great now. In fact we have almost much sex now as we did before divorce (we’ve gone from “almost none” to “none!” ;)- Though interestingly the fact that I no longer have any expectation of appreciation or intimacy from her actually has helped now that my needs and desires are now respected by another woman – though I still fault her for her role in our divorce despite YEARS of me communicating to her VERY clear about how disrespected and unappreciated she made me feel as a non-priority in our family.

    I think maybe she just thought I’d just accept being unloved and continue to support her

    I’d say much has to do with what one’s understanding is about their marriage and how men and women feel, express and recieve love. If you went into marriage saying “sex is ok – but don’t expect us to be having sex after we’re married and have kids – because that’s pretty much over at that point” then I suppose you’re all on the same page

    But most men in these sexually frustrated roles of being supporters and providers – with no support given back to a good husband in return – were not informed that getting married and having a family meant an end to sexual intimacy (not that it should or needs to – as there are comments from women above who have many kids yet still are able to make their husbands a priority.)

    And in fact, now speaking openly about this with other men in a similar situation, we all often feel duped, used for our incomes (or sperm) and generally disrespected by our wives when they have resigned us to a non-priority for months and years – all after we’ve taken on the role of sole-bread winners to help empower our wives in some cases to take a break from their career, stay at home and raise our children.

    Perhaps the idea of a “pre-natal agreement” is a good one to have between men and women before having kids. If continuing a sexual relationship is a priority for men, give them a chance to say so – and accept that if you decide it’s no longer a priority for you once a mother, that you should respect the father of your children and let him seek love elsewhere.

    To those women who just write off sex as something they “once did” before kids – well, then I guess I can’t speak for all men – but I can tell you that I do speak for the majority of men that, yes, when most men get married they do so with the expectation that each was making a vow of fidelity and intimacy with each other – and that such mothers have broken their marriage vows in our view.

    Sex is important to most men – clearly much more important than it is to most women – but that doesn’t change the fact that if you’ve adopted a life of near celibacy, you’ve broken your vows – and you’ve placed yourself on the road to joining the “first wives club” and you should not be shocked when your relationship dissolves and your husband – who just wants to be loved (and again, for him, that includes routine sex) seeks the love you refuse to provide elsewhere.

    I think it’s one thing when we’re talking immediate post child birth or even a reduced frequency while breastfeeding – there’s a natural expectation that a woman’s libido is biologically low at these times, and of course can just be physically unable to engage in intercourse. Most good men will be understanding of this – or they should – and I’d think that most good women would lament their lost libido but recognize their good husband still has needs – and thus would find some way to connect with him and satisfy his needs – but obviously some here militantly will not.

    I refuse to believe that women are truly held that hostage by your hormones or lack of them so much that you can’t realize your man DESIRES YOU. Not his hand… not finding a mistress, or happy ending masseuse/prostitute or anywhere else some men might turn if the weeks of celibacy turn into months which turn into years of what’s a generally loveless sexless relationship (at least from your man’s perspective)

    Are you making choices to breast feed for as long as possible in part to keep those barriers to intimacy up? Are you making choices to co-sleep for YEARS which you KNOW is going to be a barrier to intimacy – and STILL convince yourself that years of being near celibate is “good” for your children and family?

    Some women can do these things and still make their man and his desires for his wife a priority. Apparently some cannot – and if you’re in this category, I strongly encourage you to re-examine your priorities. If you are not intimate with your husband then STOP breast feeding and STOP co-sleeping. You are not doing you children ANY favors by putting yourself on the road to single-motherhood and them being without you for half of their childhoods while they live part time with you and part time with their father.

    And yes – as men/husbands/fathers we don’t want some robotic dutiful wife who lovelessly “does her duty” (google Louis CK “most pathetic HJ ever” skit that he wrote just prior to his divorce.) we actually DO want you to actually desire us – but as they say, perhaps you have to “fake it til you make it” and try to act as though you like your husbands and actually want to give them support as best you can

    The bottom line is that our role as parents is to put our FAMILIES first – and that includes husband and wife in those roles – not just being “mother and father.” Strong good families REQUIRE that you be a good wife and a good husband – not just focused on being the Uber Mom who does everything the “right” way as a parent, obsessed with children but never your husbands

    I’m overgeneralizing here for sure, but again, if you’re not a good wife, then you’re not a good mother (and if not a good husband you’re not a good father.) – The two are connected and while women apparently might be able to put the role of “good wife” and “good mother” as separate, they are not…

    At least not until you are separated or divorced – which may be what many mothers secretly desire, seeing as you are all knowingly maintain this lifestyle despite KNOWING that it’s eroding your relationship with your husband – the father of your children.

    Having your kids in your custody for only 6 months a year will most definitely give you more free time and allow you to recoup energy – and no doubt perhaps you can be a more engaged parent when they’re back with you. Perhaps only being with your kids 6 months out of the year will also give you the time to try to find a man who will take another chance on you and have a good adult relationship!

    But if you actually think that having two parents live together and care for their children – and each other – as true partners – is good for your children, then you need to address the real reasons why some women can be good mothers AND good wives, and some either cannot or will not and will find excuse after excuse after excuse for year after year after year to have very little intimacy with the man you once loved.

    From what I can tell among my friends, there’s an epidemic of fathers being expected to accept their place as an asexual non-priority with the women they want to love – and I’m hopeful they and their wives look at me/us and our divorce as an example of where they are headed.

    I do them or you no favors by not making clear that my views are closer to the norm, but most of your husbands know better than to say so, precisely for the way that I’ve likely been labeled as a Neanderthal here – but continue to speak up to my friends wives to tell them they’re on a VERY slippery slope.

    When you treat your husband as described by this article and among the many subsequent comments, you erode your husband’s trust in you. You tell him that he cannot count on you in a relationship – that he;s on his own and if he doesn’t like it “he has his hand” – and you create the elements of a toxic relationship which, once trust is broken, often cannot be repaired. Some may stick it out in a loveless/sexless relationship which teaches the wrong lessons of love to your children (and poises them to replicate your own loveless marriage).

    Some may make the better choice, in which you only have to be a custodial parent to your children 6 months out of the year, and develop a good co-parenting relationship with the mother of your children while you find love with a woman who can be both a good wife as well as a good mother.

    Some moms here who feel more overwhelmed with motherhood than others actually may be doing their children a favor by only playing that role 6 months out of the year.

    For those that don’t like the thought of missing half their children’s lives who insist they are within their “rights” to not be intimate with their husbands (and that is indeed your right) – well, if you value being with your children, then you might want to start showing your husband that you value him as well.

    In my case, my only regret is not making the decision to divorce sooner. Life is too short to go years feeling/being unloved by the person you committed yourself to in marriage.

    To any guys out there – if your wife can find excuses to go months with little or no intimacy and without making YOU a priority in her life, be aware that such women are GREAT at finding NEW excuses whether they are in diapers, nursery school, elementary school or middle/high school – the MOST time you have as parents is when kids are young and sleep more. As they grow older you’ll have less and less time as they have more needs, stay up later, etc. etc.

    So if the weeks of celibacy turn into months and years – and you’ve already tried communicating your anguish with your wife over her constant rejections – well then I strongly encourage you to begin thinking about a NEW life with a good woman who can help you demonstrate what a good relationship is for your kids future benefit.

    For me, in the last few years, after expressing these concerns and desires over and over with her to no avail, I just gave up. I think for awhile my ex thought this was great – I was no longer asking her for sex. Finally! In reality I’d just accepted that after 10 years she was never going to change – and accepted that our relationship as husband and wife was over. Ironic that she might tell others those were our best years – but it was mainly because I finally gave up – and again, I only regret not calling it quits sooner.

    I urge all of you – husbands and wives both – to be honest with yourselves and communicate with each other. If you husband asks you to change and make him a priority and months and years go by where nothing changes and he continues to have the same complaint – then such wives and mothers really shouldn’t be surprised when they’re single again, looking for a new man who will consider a relationship with an asexual middle age woman with kids.

    I think in retrospect my ex would probably tell you that if she had to do it over again she’d take my concerns and desires a little more seriously and not write her own asexual nature off as “natural” as so many moms here seem to do – even if it’s only because she doesn’t like only having her kids with her half the year.

    1. Pay attention ladies – you should sense the palatable anguish experienced by George and the others for the weeks and months you continue to reject their appeals for your love – these are guys who get up every day to take on the burden of often being the sole bread winner so you and the children can enjoy your time together as a SAHM

      (The SAHMs have more time, but IMO seem to complain they have less free time than working moms in my opinion – even though they actually have more family/father and societal supports than any generation before, they complain the most – and I’ve also noticed that moms with 1 or 2 kids seem to claim to have less time than those with 4-6 kids)

      All the Georges of the world ask in return is that you love and respect them for the heavy burden they’ve taken on to fulfill the commitment they made to love and support you and the kids. And every time you reject their cries for love it cuts like a knife.

      Eventually, just to protect themselves, they have no choice but to STOP desiring you – and once that happens resentment sets in as they realize they can’t trust you to love them – and that resentment can turn to outright hate if this goes on long enough – in fact, once they get to the stage of no longer desiring you, your marriage is probably over – it will just take some time for you both to realize it

      Maybe some of the moms here are married to jerks of husbands (there’s a lot of them out there, I realize), who do nothing to contribute be it in income or parenting/child care – if so, then deny them all the love and affection you want as non-contributing husbands certainly don’t deserve you

      But if you have a good guy, who loves you, your kids, who contributes around the house and with parenting and wakes up to go to a stressful job every day, coming home hoping to find some relief to the stress in the bedroom with you – only to be denied physical affection from the woman who took a vow before God to always love him, day after day after day – adding more and more to his work and home stress… well, that’s just humiliating and painful, more so for a good guy who loves you and who never did anything to deserve being treated like a non-priority by you

      And if you’re treating a good guy that way, you don’t deserve him – and in fact you deserve to lose him and your kids for the six months out of the year they’ll live with their father

      Sorry ladies – I realize your choice to breast feed and co-sleep and engage in attachment parenting for years doesn’t help your libido or kid free bed time – not to mention the time you spend on or your personal “mama-blogs” or Facebook

      But when you knowingly make that choice to put all of those things ahead of your husband – KNOWING it’s hurting your husband and putting your kids on the path to be living in single parent households – that’s on you for making a conscious choice to do this to your family.

      Yeah divorce is often a two way street – but if you are consciously choosing to keep your husband sexually frustrated – this is a divorce that YOU own

      Your words “I love you” when you can’t, don’t or won’t give him the affection he deserves, ring completely hollow – and actually cut like a knife as we KNOW if you meant it, you’d make the fathers of your children a priority in your life

      Your words “I don’t have time or energy” for the father of your children fly in the face of you making time for yoga for YOU and a long list of fun activities with the kids or just yourself (or you and the girls) that fill your day while we work 40, 50, 60 hours a week to provide for our families and want just ONE thing in return – love/appreciation/affection.

      If you’ve read this far you can no longer claim ignorance. You’re knowingly torturing your husbands, and knowingly putting your family on the path to divorce

      Sure, it’s your “right” to deny affection to anyone and everyone (and best of luck finding a new guy to love as a single mom with “no time”)

      But it’s your husband’s right to take his children and leave (or ask you to leave) and create a new family with a new woman and his children, as he deserves the type of love and affection inherent in the wedding vows you broke

      The question is, what are you going to do to change?

      There’s a LOT of women out there who would truly appreciate having the good men you reject on a daily basis in THEIR lives. There’s a lot of women who seem to be able to find a balance in their lives, with time for themselves, their children and yes, THEIR HUSBANDS – and they take pride and enjoyment in showing their husbands/new men how loved they are.

      Meanwhile, if you divorce, while there are some good guys like George out there – divorced because his wife was incapable of being a mother and wife at the same time – but most of the divorced guys out there (or guys that didn’t get married) are available or divorced for good reason (and

      So instead of writing blog posts to justify why you think you can be happily married with a happy family and happy kids while denying your husband affection – talk to other mamas who seem to have the basic skill of balancing parenthood and couplehood – and find out what their “secrets” are to be able to be both a mother AND a wife

      And make the choice to make a change in your life – before you too are divorced and childless

  55. Men sound like f-ing babies tome. Their needs? Who f-ing cares. That’s why I am single. Not gonna live up to some societal standard that I have to give men sex so that they feel okay…frickin babies. Men and women are wired different and there’s no changing that!

    1. I give you a ton of credit for knowing yourself – and that you’re not cut out to be a wife (and maybe not a mom – though I suppose if you’re up to the challenge of being a single mom from the start, with no men in your life once pregnant, and walked into that eyes wide open – good for you!)

      Though I would disagree that men who have the “chutzpah” to *gasp* actually physically desire their wives are “crybabies” – they’re simply the same men who entered into marriage with wives who dramatically changed once they had their husbands and families “locked down” thinking that hubby has no choice but to be “loyal” in a celibate relationship.

      I guess for such women who convinced hubby that they liked sex long enough to get him to marry her – and of course have kids – but then showed their true colors… Well they should be quickly divorced. They’re not worth having as wives – and are unlikely to ever change.

      Any woman who would treat the man she married as so many women here admit they do – well, if she has it in her to torture a husband who’s biggest crime is desiring his wife, I say don’t hesitate to end that sham of a marriage as soon as possible.

      No amount of counseling will save such a marriage. As you can see there’s a ton of women who affirm “my husband has no right to expect sex with me” and they’ll convince themselves that they’re right and hubby is wrong to desire his wife physically.

      Like you, they should just admit that being a good wife isn’t something they were really cut out to do. Send their man off to a massage parlor or some other “professional service” – or even support him by helping him find a good mistress you’re comfortable with if you want to stay “married” for perception purposes or for the kids – and maybe that will keep him happy enough.

      But really, such women should just not be married (or probably shouldn’t have had kids – but it’s too late to change that now)

      Do the husband you once loved a favor – admit you’re not the “wife-type” and let him try to find a good woman who desires him physically while he’s still relatively young. There are in fact many women out there who do like sex – and many are good mothers as well as good wives.

      There’s nothing “wrong” with a woman/mother who doesn’t want to have sex – though there IS something wrong with a woman who got married, had kids – but THEN decided she didn’t want to be an object of desire for her man any longer.

      Don’t waste time guys – anyone who would do that to you and treat you that badly (especially if you’ve clearly and calmly communicated your needs) isn’t a woman worth having as a wife – start planning your divorce now. Any wife who so proudly and callously rejects her husband – who are often quite literally BEGGING you to show them some physical affection and who can treat someone they supposedly “love” that badly is not a good person – period.

      If this is just a short term issue – maybe she’s depressed or has other mental health issues – stay with her assuming she’s willing to address those personal issues she has – and by all means be a good man/husband/father and do your part to help with the kids in addition to (often) shouldering the pressure of the sole income while she stays home with the kids.

      But if the weeks turn to months and years – move on.

      There are good women out there however who do like sex and value a monogamous relationship. Divorce your wife and go find one of those many good women like that out. There are many who actually cherish having a good man and good father – and will be proud to show you how loved you are.

      To some women, the thought of dooming their husbands (and themselves) to near celibacy isn’t something they can even fathom.

      But for any guy who has stumbled on to this site because he has the type of wife who can’t or won’t make time for him and his needs – accept that such wives are unlikely to ever change enough to make your needs a priority in her life. The sooner you prepare for divorce, the better.

      For those of you still unsure – have your wives read this article and the comments. If there’s any hope of saving your marriage, this article should be a wake up call to your wife – and if she still doesn’t change after reading it – well, you know what type of a woman she is, and you now know what you need to do.

      (As you can see – some women here are as horrified by how badly some women treat their husbands as you are – but there’s just as many women who stridently refuse to change and instead support their fellow wives in celibacy.)

      At the very least she can’t say she wasn’t warned. If she continues to treat you this badly she’s effectively saying she wants a divorce – and you and your kids will all be better off by you finding a good woman who can be both a good mother for your children and a good wife for you – creating a healthy and happy family!

    2. Yes, that is why you are single. You have not obligation to meet a man’s needs, unless you accept that obligation through agreement. In that case, changing the agreement without his consent makes you POS. You, however, are free to be single and meet only your needs. You are free to hold whatever opinion you like, whether it is right or not. This article isn’t aimed at you, the single woman, and neither are most of the comments. This article is in the context of marriage and a wife who refuses to acknowledge her husband’s needs while simultaneously insisting that her’s are paramount.

  56. I don’t see how this is reasonable. Even though a wife is tired from cuddling with her children all day, it is only selfish to expect that a husband will be willing to wait months or years until the children are older to have sex again. Men (and usually women) are physiologically wired to need sexual relief more often than that. Sex is one of the few things that are exclusive to (most) marriages. A husband can find intellectual stimulation, emotional relationships, and companions for fun activities from people other than his wife, but he can only get sex from her. If she is denying him sex, she is harming the relationship. Maybe when a woman is worn out from spending time with kids all day, she might have trouble getting aroused herself, but that doesn’t mean she should deny her husband pleasure. I mean, that’s what blow jobs are for, right?

  57. This was just one long diatribe, with a failed attempt to be clever/poetic, about how men need to meet and worry about women’s needs but women have no obligation to do the same for men. Men, this is BS. If she isn’t looking out for you and putting in the extra effort, walk away. Don’t think that her needs trump yours, they don’t. You have probably sacrificed as much for your children as she has. There is nothing sacred about motherhood. If she can’t be a mother AND a lover (you are expected to be a father and a romantic partner), then she isn’t a woman. Walk away. Kids or not, walk away. Don’t give women this power over you or your sons. Stand up for your needs, make it clear how important they are. Remind her that it is a partnership, and if she expects you to give to her, then she should give to you as well. Kids are an add-on, not a replacement.

  58. For all you guys who have stumbled upon this – likely googling “sexually frustrated husband,” I’ve got some bad news for you.

    She’s not going to change. You are not a priority in her life and you never will be – because even if she utters the words “I love you” occasionally, she most certainly does NOT as evidenced by her actions (or lack thereof).

    Quite simply, she is not a good wife, good mother or good woman if she’s driven you to the point of getting to this narcissistic essay by a woman attempting to rationalize the beginning of the end of her marriage and the reality that she will soon only see her children 6 months out of the year.

    So the time has come for you to cut bait and start fishing again – and I can assure you that if you are a good Man and a good father, there are thousands of attractive, fit, loving compassionate women out there. Some of them are divorced moms who value a good Man. Some of them are single with no kids who would be thrilled to be a good step-mom and maybe have more with you – but they know that the key to being a good mom is to be a good wife first.

    You are not a low priority. You are a non-priority. It’s one thing to take a back seat to your kids – but it’s another thing not to be allowed in the car – especially when you’re a hard working protector and provider that gets up every day to go to a stressful, tiring job knowing that your sexual frustration will be worse the next day… and the next… and the next. And yet somehow you still keep it together – still feign a smile for your children and continue to do what you think is right – and be a good father by staying.
    You’re wrong. The best thing you can do for your kids is find love – and if you’re reading this – you’re going to have to find it elsewhere.

    Read the many responses here and you’ll arrive at the same conclusion as me. Some women want to be married, but not be wives… they want to have children but not be mothers, constantly whining about what they’ve convinced themselves is “the toughest job in the world” no matter how hard and stressful yours is.

    One generation ago our mothers would have embraced their role as both wife and mother – but you’re witnessing the LAZIEST generation of women we’ve ever seen, raised to think they are entitled to a nice house, nice car, nice vacations, all provided by a hard working husband while they do the “toughest job in the world” of being a stay at home mom (I have a bit more sympathy for women who both work in the real world and also be a mom – but they also usually aren’t celibate narcissists like those we see here)

    Some of these women (including many writing on this page) I believe are mentally ill… perhaps depressed, perhaps bipolar, most likely with personality disorders that have them placing their happiness as the #1 priority even ahead of their children (if their children were their top priority they would devote themselves to fostering a happy marriage). Hopefully they’re getting help but if it’s not helping them to be loving wives, you can bet they use therapy to rationalize their narcissism.

    Take a long hard look at your wife. You still desire her to a degree obviously – probably less each day she denies you though. Most women would be thankful for a man who desired them – but to her, this is your crime… she is too “touched out” and doesn’t want you to desire here – and she is doing a damn fine job of making sure you’ll eventually stop desiring such a woman that would so callously use and abuse you, because that’s what weeks and months of sexual rejection will get her.
    At this point your balls are so blue you’d probably need only about 1 minute of sexual attention from her to find some relief.

    Can she find one minute in a day for you? 60 minutes in an hour? 24 hours in a day…. 1440 minutes in a day… can she make you a priority for just ONE of them? Of course not. You don’t rank in the top 1440 (and yes ladies – you actually DO have the ability to show your husband you love him in the middle of the night.)

    She finds time for yoga each week – but no time for you. Time for her friends, facebook, Instagram, her narcissistic writings and ramblings – but not you.

    So you know in a given week you don’t rank in the top 1440 for her… sleep, perusing the internet, blogging, her hobbies – her yoga (just like the author teasing her frustrated husband with her yoga pants and chortling to the world about the cuckold husband she owns) her time on Facebook, Instagram….

    Because she IS cheating on you… she HAS broken her vows to you… her vows to be your wife…
    You just need one minute in any given day…. But stop deluding yourself… you’re not even a priority for one minute out of the 10,080 minutes in any week… heck, she can’t even find one minute for you out of the 302,400 minutes in a given month.

    She’ll even laugh in your face about her infidelity as seen in this article… for women like her, children don’t multiply her love – she’s incapable of that (though other good women indeed can take care of husband and children). It doesn’t matter if she’s sleeping with the milkman or if “a little man” stole her heart – the bottom line is there used to be room for you in her heart and life and now you don’t even rank in her top 1 million priorities if it’s been over 3 months since she touched you sexually just to say “hey – I love you, appreciate how hard you work for your family and I care about your needs.”

    Even when she senses your frustration has reached a boiling point and will concede to touch you just for her own well-being, tired of having an understandably grumpy or despondent husband around the house (so she can go back to being a devoted narcissist who thinks that everyone in the world should tune in to her blog offering insights from her slice of life as a selfish mother) you can barely enjoy it, knowing that it will be another 1 million minutes until she denigrates herself to touching you again.

    Indeed, if you endure this routine for years (as she’ll say that if she “can just get through the infant years” she’ll make you a priority again… then the nursery school years become an excuse, with her promising that once the kids start school she’ll find the time for you again… only to learn that the school routine is even more tiring, and despite not having the kids with her for 7 hours a day she STILL won’t have time for you) – well after a few years you’ll actually STOP desiring her and START resenting her – until you despise her.

    Trust has been broken. You’ve invested much into your relationship but there is NO return for you.
    Break that cycle now. Be a Man. Plan your divorce strategy – because I promise you any woman who has allowed you to get to this point will NEVER change.

    Don’t allow your sons to grow up thinking that a Man allows his woman to treat him like dirt unless that’s the life you want for him.

    Don’t allow your daughters to grow up thinking they can and should act like their mommies – unless you want THEM to be single mothers with no one to care for them later in life. Yes it will be disruptive for them – but the alternative of learning how to abuse one’s husband is far worse and they will be better off in the long run.

    No woman should be compelled or is obligated to have sex with anyone of course – and that includes their “husband (in name only)”.

    But no woman is also obligated or has a right to be with their children any more than 6 months out of the year…. That IS her right – but these are your children and hopefully the 6 months out of the year they can be with you and a step-Mother who knows that a happy family DOES mean having a happy husband will teach them how a loving man and woman should interact.

    You wife, sadly is incapable of this… she’s a narcissist and every time you think or say “if only she could understand what weeks and months of sexual rejection does to me” – the reality is that SHE CANNOT UNDERSTAND.

    She is incapable of feeling your pain, understanding your needs – even knowing that her children are soon to be living in two separate divorced households aren’t enough to force a narcissist or someone with another personality disorder to put their children/husbands ahead of their own desires.

    She’s completely taken you for granted… perhaps one day, years down the road, post divorce, when she’s older, fatter, completely un-desirable – she might look back with some lament… “if only she had found ONE minute out of the 1440 in a day… one out of the 10,080 in a week… one out of the 300,000 minutes in a month – maybe she would still be married… maybe she would see her kids for more than half a year each year…. Maybe she would still be loved by someone…. Anyone…. Because NO ONE wants a selfish celibate wife.

    But if you’ve gotten to this point, you already know… she is incapable of putting anyone else’s needs ahead of her own, and no matter how much you do, how much you change, how many date nights you take her on (because all the work and stress you take on are not enough for her to make you a priority) – she will never change.

    She’ll always PROMISE to change, as you’ve hopefully verbalized all of your frustrations to her – but you know from experience that she never will.

    Some women love unconditionally. THESE are the women worthy of desire. THESE are the women worthy of calling our wives. But some women place condition after condition on their unconditional love… excuse after excuse of why their husband’s sexual needs are a non-priority.

    Women who have conditions on their unconditional love are worthy of divorce – and nothing more.
    Take charge of your life. There’s thousands of good women out there – sadly, you didn’t marry one of them… but life is too short to waste it with a woman of the caliber you got stuck with… it’s time to change that.

    Now, if you’re one of the bad wives and mothers out there who found this article (because deep down inside you know, and you really cannot deny that if you’re a bad wife, you are a bad mother) you have no time to waste. Prove me wrong – change. Now. No conditions. Simply love your husband – the man you once loved enough to start a family with until your selfishness drove him and your children away from you (again – you have a right to be with your children 6 months a year – nothing more – and if you don’t like that then you also need to be a good wife.)

    Set no conditions on your unconditional love. Get off the computer. Get off the tablet… phone. Stop all those things you fill millions of minutes with aside from your husband, who hasn’t previously been in the top million of your priorities.

    Go show your husband that he is loved… show him physically – because for men if there is no physical love there can be no emotional love.

    The time you spent reading this should have been time you spent showing your husband how loved and appreciated he is by his wife and family.

    And if he hasn’t already found someone else, maybe, if you’re lucky, you can salvage your marriage and family.

    Download a free dating app and set up a fake or anonymous user account women…. (it would not surprise me if your husband did this after the first 50 times he expressed his frustration to you)
    You’ll learn that the man you have is likely head and shoulders better than the majority of men out there… and Men – take a look on those apps/sites yourself and you’ll see thousands of available women who desperately want a good man to love who will never fail to show you that you are respected, appreciated and most of all loved.

    It’s time you got on with your lives. Your ex-wife can be celibate to her hearts content. She’ll have ample time soon when she’s alone.

    Be a good example for your children. Show them that good Daddies and good husbands SHOULD be loved. Show them that mommies who treat daddies like mommy does to you won’t have daddies in their lives for very long. And that there are other good mommies out there who can love their husbands AND their children – and themselves of course – that are better role models for them to follow than their own moms.

    All you ladies (assuming you’re with halfway decent men) have made your bed of a toxic relationship where you’ve destroyed the trust your husband placed in you when he married you and agreed to have kids. Stop rationalizing as this author and so many respondants do. You’ve got to lie in your celibate bed now and accept the consequences for always putting yourself as the top priority while your husband doesn’t even rank in your top million.

    Own it – and move on. Be good co-parents, put the needs of your children first before your own justified animosity towards each other and act civil. But admit that you are not a good wife or good mother and end your sham of a marriage quickly and fairly, without expectations that a man who you clearly don’t love should have to do anything more than take care of his children financially and emotionally – as you should be able to take care of yourself and your children if you truly consider yourself “equal” as a woman.

    But by all means, please spare us all your narcissistic attempts to rationalize your destruction of your marriage and family.

    Love your husband NOW – or end your marriage. It’s that simple.

  59. Interesting study on trends on frequency of sex shows that married couples frequency is dropping faster, and now appears to be on par with their single brethren.

    Ask most guys if they are getting married with the expectation of LESS sex than when single and you’ll get an overwhelming NO. In fact their expectation is just the opposite. Guys get married to have MORE sex – not less.

    Kindof funny to think that our parents 25 – 50 years ago or more were having MUCH more sex than we are in this over-sexed day and age. Note that generation also had a lower divorce rate ladies.

    The “norm” now with this “alarming drop” infrequency is DOWN to once every 6 days – more or less once a week.

    Gotta wonder how many of the moms here live up to even the new lower average.

    But my God – I look at some of these stats and see that married couples in their mid 60s are having sex more frequently than my ex-wife was. 20 times a year for even THEM?

    Holy crap. That’s at least TWICE as much as I ever got from my ex. Twice a month MIGHT have been enough to keep some love in our marriage. We’re talking once every 2 or 3 months in her case (and apparently some of these other Stay at Home Moms.) Even before kids once a week was probably THE most frequent. Once we had sex twice in one week and I was floored, asking “what did I do to deserve THIS so I can do it again!”

    Yes, that’s only 4-6 times a year for some of us as the “norm”. Although it didn’t start out that way, if I could have EVER have gotten my ex up to 12 times a year – once a month – perhaps she’d still get to see her kids more than 6 months a year now.

    Now – and this is no exaggeration – with a “normal” woman (and yes, we both have kids to care for as single parents) I literally have more sex in one normal week – sometimes in one weekend – than I ever did in an ENTIRE YEAR!

    The study guesses that needed dual income households are a reason – but again, it seems to me it’s the SAHMs who can’t find the time to take care of the kids and handle a household who are always complaining about not having enough time – which must be insulting to all those parents who do that AND work AND make time for each other. And money (nor anything else really) should never come before loving your husband.

    A good man/good husband should be your TOP priority but for most of you, he couldn’t be a lower priority as you purposely make yourself “touched out” and exhausted by trying to be the “perfect mom” of breast feeding and co sleeping for half a decade, and then wondering why you have no sex drive… and soon wondering why you have no husband.,

    Even the “average” of once every 6 days now for married couples in their 30s (down from once every 5 days) would probably be a HUGE improvement for anyone who has stumbled upon this page.

    Intellectually I would think the author and any of the mom’s defending the sort of thinking that says “this is just a cute phase of me torturing my husband by being nearly celibate” should know that they are dooming their children to life shutting from one household to another.

    Yet they apparently don’t love their kids enough to FIND the time for intimacy. While I’m over generalizing, I think we can all agree if you’re not a good wife, you’re not a good mother. Oh sure, you can do all of those other things and fill that gap in your life where sex used to be with Yoga, Mama-blogging, other activities supposedly “for the kids” – but you are already on the fast track for divorce.

    By the time Hubby raises this as an issue of concern, assume he’s already contemplating life as a single divorced man – and don’t delay.

    Accept the notion that regardless of your wedding vows, you all agreed to be wives. And you aren’t a wife if you’ve allowed your children, yoga or anything else to be so much a priority that you have no time for your husband.

    Once you’ve broken your vow, trust is destroyed, and once trust is destroyed it’s VERY difficult to save a marriage.

    So once a week ladies – at MINIMUM. No excuses, unless you truly DON’T want to be with your kids more than 6 months a year.

  60. yes i know my spelling and punctuation suck
    Im so sick of this new view of motherhood where your all heroes and the world should shine on you and your beautiful child you brought in to this world with our help?????!!!!!!!! WTF!!!!!!!!!…… incase you have forgotten we are not a fucking bench warmer for you to turn your attention on us when you feel its time.. we (i for sure cant speak for others) i am just as much a parent as my wife and have changed diapers cooked meals done laundry and everything else you want to put in the realm of overwhelming and exhausting. and on top of that i did it while working 10 to 16 hour days obviously not as much when super busy yet in are modern times everything a man or husband does is shrugged of unappreciated and looked at as irrelevant or needy just stay in the back ground till you need us
    well i for one say FUCK that did you ever think about the wedge you drive in a relationship and the two separate paths we go on new hobbies groups of friends no intimacy and im not just ranting about sex the simple warmth of a hug and and a smile when coming home from work when all that dries up its like we are not even a couple yet we by our wifes and society are expected to sit on a bench bottle up our needs thoughts and any other dreams or goals to wait for you to be “READY” yet you are willing to do nothing but complain and give nothing in return for the massive amount you dont ask or even try and communicate or come to here’s a crazy thought HOW ABOUT A HOUSE WHERE THE KIDS SEE 2 PARENTS WORKING TOGETHER to raise a family and i dont care if your gay black white from the moon just as long as your not a clown (they freak me out) it is in no way health for kids to watch mom act so overwhelmed and burnt out by something thats natural and believe it or not isnt nearly as hard as you paint it to be ive done several months as the stay at home parent and found it yes frustrating at times and yes stressful at times and im talking school band orchestra sports swim lessons birthday parties homework play dates the park and thats not even all the other cool stuff we do that is not to much to handle IT IS very much a job and should never be looked down upon or belittled as its the core of our families and society and should be looked upon with respect and appreciation also why i split my money with my wife and push her to go out away from the house and kids and cut loose and remember that she is a person with her own happiness to always be aware of not some overstressed grumpy beaten by the world mom could you imagine what women 40 years ago would have thought of how houses are run and im not one of these assholes that think a womens place is in the kitchen no sir im very forward thinking and believe these rolls (probably the wrong spelling and if so i dont care i love rolls with butter ) i think that in a relationship you fall into what works best dude stays home wife works cool other way around fine gay dude goes to work other gay guy stays home but not sure if that helps my point as its two dudes or two women the one wgo is more of a nurtureing person genarly take the cornerstone of the family place and its healthy and people are happy
    when i was home more then anything i found it fulfilling and a awesome time watching them grow and respond to lessons and guidance for how to live and handle lifes challenges never was i so overwhelmed of all theses people pawing at me and no i never breast fed but i burped and cleaned up spitup and did laundry and cleaned OUR children to let her be her after most feedings when i was home
    and heres where ill probaly pissoff and lose the rest of you if you would put your goddamn phone down quit posting on blogs about how hard your life is and spend more time with us (being your family as a family) not taking pics to post for your circle of other disillusioned mommys and where actually in the moment not some where else you could find the same joy as i have
    and if you want to think im crazy go to a store no one interacts with there kids or tells them why not to touch stuff in the store or act out and take the responsibility to talk to them and give them something to do to combat boredom they feel as little people who watch and copy all we do instead i see people men and women mostly women to be honest yell ignore the tantrum or or not freak out till some one else is mad or says something as is becoming the norm from what i see out there
    instead of this im a mother you wont understand look me the mommy attitude
    how about you put your big girl pants on the phone down and lets do this together as a team and get dirty at night when there asleep and think of all the crap you do when you know damn well your kids are busy and if they walk in on you having sex first they will probably learn to knock and i for one would rather have my kid walk in a very important and fun part of a healthy relationship although very embarrassing and more then awkward then years of distant passive aggressive slowly growing dislike for each other every one i know walked in there parents at one time and im sure alot of you has as well hmmmmm seems to be ok no one burst into flames
    but now people are so crazy they want to cover up a tit on the venus de milo or how ever its spelled and nudity is bad and those thoughts are evil but i cant change the tv with out constant violence what the fuck is going on
    father of two very good daughters 10 and 13 all Mostly A’s and a B here and there (thank god they got there moms spelling) they are well liked across several social groups other then trouble makers and those getting in to drugs they are told the truth of what they are and what could happen as well as taught not to look down but to have a compassionate heart as but by the grace of kermit the frog go i we are not religious at all can can certainly recognize good advice and implement it in our lifes and i have the best relationship with my kids they will hug me in front of there friends i can drop them off infront of school and they want me to meet there freinds not so much mom as she has fallen in to the poor mommy attitude but does very little and what she does do we never hear the end of oh and putting cans of vegetables in a crock pot and turning it on is not a hoime cooked meal i welcome any conversation and will honestly give importance to other points of view but dont bug me if all you want to do is bitch we all live on this big blue ball together and cant have every thing we want lets get back to community as a whole and not get hung up on every little thing in the words of the great Joe Dirt life’s a garden dig it or let your self hold you back i love life and want to enjoy it and if she or yall as a whole dont want to dont be surprised when your on your own not as a parent cause i will always be there for my kids and hope i speak for all men there and dont forget its more then likey gonna be on you cause all our whining and neediness is more you writing us off as children but it was more then likey one half of the relationship trying to voice concerns needs come to a understanding and treated like a father and a husband and to put it like you did sorry mommys but youre gonna just have to face the fact that in a marriage we are equal parts and might find life way easier when we offer you some dunnage to rest the weight of the world on so we can do something fun then ther forklift can pick it up when needed later (thats what the dunnage is for) wish you and your families the best lifes as hard and also what you make it unless “you like to see hobos naked” god i love that movie and fuck clowns goodnight america

  61. waiting moderation what for thats silly maybe we should all live a little its good to be offended or have your views challenged thats what makes us us

  62. I am and have been completely devoted and faithful to my one and only love for more than 25 years. We have three children together, who are now between 16 and 21.

    Without meaning to make light of this very sensitive topic, let me share with you my Parable of the Chocolate…

    There once were a young couple who fell in love and decided to spend the rest of their lives together. Among the many things they enjoyed together was chocolate. They would incorporate chocolate into many of their meals together throughout the week, whether they went out or stayed home, and regularly enjoyed trying out new and exciting chocolate variants and combinations.

    They soon discovered that due to the biochemical differences between men and women, she would crave chocolate more often than he did. However, because it made him happy to make her happy, and he enjoyed seeing her enjoy herself, he was more than happy to have chocolate with her whenever she wanted. If ever he just really wasn’t in the mood for chocolate himself, he would still enjoy feeding her chocolate, or just watch her feed herself chocolate.

    Due to the devotion to each other’s happiness, their love grew stronger and stronger.

    After some time, the happy couple decided to invite children into their lives, and soon they had a baby. Having a baby was a wonderful blessing which they both enjoyed, but it also introduced new challenges. Often their sleep would be interrupted at night, and they both had to work harder and longer during the day; she to take care of the baby’s physical needs, and he to provide the required additional finances.

    As a consequence, they were always tired and had much less time for just the two of them. However, they found the effect this had on each of them was quite different. Whereas he found himself being less in the mood for chocolate, and would much rather just cuddle up and go to sleep, she actually found herself craving chocolate even more – partly because they didn’t have it as often, and partly because chocolate helped relieve her stress, but mostly because enjoying chocolate together was the ting that had always drawn them closest together, something she sorely missed now that the baby was demanding so much of their time.

    In the beginning, he would do his best to accommodate her whenever she was in the mood for chocolate, though more and more often he would just feed her chocolate rather than join her, and seemed less emotionally involved. As time went on, rather than accommodate her, he started apologising for just not being in the mood, and eventually he even stopped bringing home chocolate for her. When she questioned him about it, he told her that the extra demands in time and energy associated with providing for her and the baby just left him too drained to enjoy chocolate together with her, and the extra costs of baby food and nappies just didn’t leave enough to also buy chocolate like they used to.

    Initially she tried to be patient, hoping that if she just tried to ignore the craving it would eventually go away, but the longer her cravings remained unsatisfied, the more they started to dominate her thoughts and leave her feeling frustrated and depressed. Every now and then she would forego some grocery item to buy herself some chocolate, and secretly eat it while he was away or asleep, but though the chocolate would temporarily reduce her physical craving, having to eat it secretly by herself left her feeling emotionally unsatisfied and guilty.

    Eventually things got so bad that she plucked up the courage to share her predicament with him, hoping that they could come up with some kind of compromise to meet her needs. But, though he empathised with her and assured her he still loved her, he said the baby’s needs were just more important right now, and under the circumstances he just couldn’t bring himself in the mood for chocolate, adding that surely she wouldn’t expect him to do anything he didn’t enjoy. However, he assured her that once the baby was grown there would be plenty of time for them to enjoy chocolate again together.

    This wasn’t what she had signed up for. At no time when they had discussed having children had he indicated that this would be at the expense of their own relationship together. However, since she loved him, and indeed didn’t expect him to do anything he really didn’t enjoy, she had no choice but to resign herself to enduring the chocolate-deprived years that lay ahead as best she could. Each additional baby that joined their family was a bittersweet occasion, for though she loved her babies immensely, they also extended the consequent years without chocolate. Suffering in silence, she found that being close to him only intensified the reminder of what she was missing, so it was easier to distance herself and try to close off her emotions.

    Weeks turned into months, and the months into years. Babies turned into toddlers, toddlers into tweens, and tweens into teens; each different in their needs but just as demanding physically, emotionally, and financially.
    When finally the long awaited day arrived that the last of their babies had left the nest, she announced that she was also leaving. The years of unmet needs, and feeling second-place to her children, had eventually caused her love and emotional bond with him to wither and die. She had remained with him out of commitment to her children, but now that they were gone there was no more reason to stay. It was time to find someone who really cared about her, who would make her feel special again, and place her needs and their relationship above anyone and anything else!

    Alone and lonely, the now almost pension aged man realised that he had lost everything. His children had left home to start families of their own, and so had the woman whom he loved, and with whom he had looked forward to enjoying retirement and growing old. He now realised that the first commitment he had made had been to the woman he had hoped to spend the rest of his life with, but he had downgraded her on his priorities list for children who would only be with him temporarily.

    If only he had understood that his number one priority should always have been his relationship with her, and that his children would one day fall in love and make someone else their number one priority. If only he had made time to be with her more often, to hire a baby sitter once a week to allow him to spend regular quality time with her. If only he had settled for a slightly simpler life to that there would still have been time and financial room for enjoying chocolate together. If only he had placed a little less importance on his own needs or those of the children, and more on hers. If only he would have put more effort into getting himself in the mood for chocolate, or at least show genuine joy in feeding her chocolate, simply because he loved her and enjoyed making and seeing her happy. If only he had demonstrated in word and deed that she was and had always been the most important thing in his life – she would still be here with him now…

    1. An excellent analogy which might help some of the moms here better understand what their partners are going through…

      Mothers seemingly demonize husband’s who’s “crime” is desiring their wives – who want their husbands to turn off their desire for physical love the way they themselves have.

      Well here’s the thing – once a man stops desiring his woman, resentment creeps in, followed by anger and outright hatred given how much we as good fathers and husbands do and sacrifice, wanting only LOVE in return.

      Open communication seems to do nothing to change it and in many cases new excuses are always readily available to replace the old ones

      Eventually a guy realizes that he’s just not a priority and he stops fighting – and instead planning for a future as a single father.

      By the time he HAS communicated openly with his wife it’s likely been years of this eating at him and it may already be too late – and DEFINITELY is too late if his wife doesn’t realize her lack of attention and devotion – indeed her very betrayal of her wedding vows – has them on the fast track to divorce.

      Is it worth it to destroy your family ladies? Is your husband really so disgusting or such a bad person that you can’t give him some solace from that challenges that come with being a father, husband and provider?

      Let’s hope it is – because by taking a husband or wife for granted – even in the name of “putting the kids first” you have undermined the MOST important thing you could do for your kids… give them a healthy, loving household where a husband and wife display a healthy relationship.

      Don’t teach your sons that they should let themselves be used by their future wives – and don’t tell your daughters they should treat their future husbands just like you treat yours… otherwise they will both find themselves divorced like most of the moms in this thread one day will be.

  63. My wife never moved out of that no sex phase described in this blog (kids are 10 and 12). I am planning on a divorce after the kids grow up and move out (we go months or even years in between any kind sex and she never enjoys it). I would never cheat on anyone and am a one-on-one kind of guy, so I just masturbate to the internet on my phone 4-6 times a week. Whenever I bring up my plans and what I do for sex (internet on the phone) she gets very upset to the point of tears and claims to still love me, but has no interest in sex. I am also upset as she’s overall a nice person, but I need passion in my life, at least a few times a month. I don’t feel too guilty as I’ve been the “nice guy” my whole life, always thought of others first, and worked hard for my family my entire marriage. I’ve done my job and raised my kids well. I make good money so I told her she can have the house and alimony after I move out in about 8 years, but that that makes her even more upset. I don’t know what other approach to take other than to be honest about what I want/need and what I am currently doing to get it, using my phone.

    1. Well, all I can say is that I was you – but that my ex’s worsening mental condition required that I move for divorce sooner rather than later

      (I’m convinced most of the sexless women here and elsewhere have major mental health problems – even past abuse that prevents them from intimacy)

      Like you I tried everythinig – especially open communication about how being a non-priority was destroying any trust or love I had for her. She promised to change every time – with a laundry list of new things I should do to foster intimacy (everything from taking over doing laundry, dishes, shopping, cooking, getting a vasectomy, supporting every crazy mommy-blogging/biz idea she wanted – just so she would have “time” to make me a priority)

      Well the thing is, if you’ve had that conversation and she still won’t change – it means she can’t change and you’re better off divorcing sooner than later.

      Staying in a toxic relationship will only be worse for your kids, especially if you can afford to support them AND an ex-wife.

      You kept your vows – she did not keep hers. Like you I never cheated – but in hindsight I would not judge any man in my or your situation who did. You deserve to feel love – being a martyr is not good for anyone.

      Like you it’s almost comical to see so many women here adopt a “well just use your hand!” attitude and then watch them recoil to think you’re fantasizing about other women. Or act hurt when the logical conclusion of a loveless marriage (divorce) is mentioned in the realm of communicating openly and honestly.

      Unless you see an immediate change for the better, take charge of your life and show your kids that love is great – find someone who loves and appreciates you because your wife does not. Even if you successfully dupe your kids into thinking you have a good marriage, eventually they will realize it was all just a charade and they’ll have major trust issues in relationships themselves.

      It will be hard but you’ll even find that you’re a better father to them with a woman who actually loves and supports you in your life.

      That could have and should have been your wife – but she made other choices and made other things in her life a priority (mainly HERSELF as I’m also convinced these entitled women have major personality disorders which foster a narcissistic view of the world)

      You know now what you didn’t know then… this time around you’ll know how to avoid women who want to be married but not be wives… have kids but don’t really want to be mothers.

      Good luck – but get busy living or get busy dying…. no need to wait til the kids are 18… you’ll only be messing them up in a different way in the process. No merit badges to be had for being a loyal but unloved husband either.

      There are great women out there – divorced moms even who are devoted doting wives who’s ex’s broke their vows even though they remained loyal and supportive. Sadly your wife isn’t one of them. She’s incapable. While I pity women like that you know deep down it’s time to move on.

      For your kids sake, I hope you find love – and since it clearly won’t be found with her, the sooner you get started the better

  64. I don’t imagine that many wedding vows included agreements of wives being at their husband’s sexual beck and call, or husbands having to be celibate during the child-rearing years. I suspect that with the abundance of love hormones coursing through their veins, most wedding couples never even consider the possibility of that ever being an issue for them. Thus, contrary to the sentiments expressed by some previous posters, unless sexual abstinence was specifically discussed and agreed on prior to the wedding, the expectation of a healthy and regular sexual relationship is implicit in the marriage contract.

    Nevertheless, it is a scientific fact that that men and women are wired differently. The differences in their biochemical makeup affect their thoughts, emotions, and sexual desires in different ways. This makes it impossible for them to completely understanding how the other’s mind works. However, those who truly care about each other never cease to work on improving their understanding, and finding ways to compensate for and complement each other in their differences.

    A major challenge is that a wife who, for whatever reason doesn’t feel any sexual desire, has no problem going without. She also finds it difficult to understand and validate the immense struggle of her husband whose desires are left unanswered. The difference might be comparable to the difference between walking down the confectionery aisle of the supermarket on an empty stomach (the cravings of the husband) versus walking down the same aisle after a full satisfying meal (the unaffected wife). While we’re on the subject of confectionery, let me try to put this into perspective with another chocolate analogy… (see my previous post for my Parable of the Chocolate).

    Imagine being a chocoholic (which many women self-profess to be) and having signed an agreement which you thought would allow you to enjoy chocolate on a regular basis for the rest of your life. Then one day, the person you love most in the world tells you that because they’ve currently gone off chocolate, you can’t have any either, and this will be for an uncertain extended period of time. Nevertheless, they will put chocolate next to you in bed every night, unwrap and rewrap the chocolate in your presence every morning when getting up and every evening when getting ready for bed, will sit chocolate across the table from you during mealtimes, and place chocolate in your hand and press it against your lips during date nights. They not only expect you to be okay with that, but also that you will remain unfazed and continue to treat them in all other ways as if nothing has changed, simply out of love and respect for them. That is what it’s like for a husband to live with a wife, who continues to turn him on sexually, whom he’s expected to sleep next to, see dress and undress, eat with, hold hands with, occasionally cuddle and kiss with, but isn’t allowed to make love with.

    Unfortunately, men and women don’t have a magical On/Off switch for their sexual desires. Regardless of the circumstances or how much they may love and respect each other, husbands can’t simply choose to switch theirs off for weeks, months, or years on end, and neither can women simply choose to switch theirs on whenever there’s a spare 10-30 minutes.

    So, does that then leave us at an impasse? It doesn’t have to. A person who truly cares about another person generally derives more joy out of making the other person happy than out of making themselves happy. Consequently, a truly fulfilling marriage is one in which husbands and wives are continually striving to make each other happy, including sexually. This means that the husband exercises love and patience until his wife is in the mood, and that the wife who finds that she’s not spontaneously be in the mood very often, *actively* strives to find ways to get herself in the mood. The result is a happy medium. Sexual intimacy might be shared a little less often than the husband’s ideal, and more often than the wife’s spontaneous desires, but when it is shared it is enjoyed both physically and emotionally by both partners. It is only when husbands start demanding and/or wives stop even trying, that the problems start.

    While we’re on the subject of emotions, contrary to popular belief, sex for men isn’t purely physical and self-centered. Many men (if not most), also crave emotional and psychological intimacy/arousal, and they derive great pleasure from giving their wives pleasure. So even though solo masturbation may on occasion provide a husband with temporary physical release, it does absolutely nothing to satisfy his emotional and psychological needs. In fact, without some form of external source of emotional and psychological arousal (normally provided by the participation of his wife), many men find it difficult to become sufficiently aroused to be able to enjoyably masturbate. This is why otherwise faithful husbands of sexually unavailable wives often turn to pornography; not because their wives aren’t attractive enough, or they don’t love them, or fantasize about having sex with other women, but because they crave the emotional and psychological arousal only a woman can provide.

    The additional problem with masturbation and pornography is that it often exacerbates the sexual relationship issue between husband and wife. When a wife becomes aware that her husband masturbates because she’s struggling to make herself sexually available, it makes her feel guilty. When she becomes aware that he’s also viewing pornography, it makes her feel betrayed and insecure about her own attractiveness. A husband who cares about his wife’s feelings, feels bad about causing her guilt and insecurity, and becomes torn between suffering the insanity-inducing effects of celibacy in silence, or secret non-fulfilling and guilt-inducing self-gratification. Clearly this is a recipe for disaster!

    But what if, despite her best efforts, a wife just isn’t able to bring herself in the mood often enough? Should she then be expected to just sacrifice herself physically and emotionally, offering up her body for her husband’s sexual gratification whilst dissociating herself emotionally? Heaven forbid, for such would reduce her to little more than a sex object, and the husband who is conscious of it to little better than a sexual abuser!

    But what then is the solution? As mentioned earlier, two people who really care about each other, find joy and happiness in making each other happy. Just as a mother can find joy in feeding her baby without needing to eat herself, a loving wife with the right mindset can find joy in giving her husband sexual pleasure without necessarily needing to be sexually pleasured herself. Whether that consists of sexual intercourse, a “blow job”, or just a “hand job”, depends on what the wife is willing and able to offer her husband without discomfort to herself. This may not be the most ideal sexual relationship for the long term, for the short term it may well be sufficient to maintain a loving relationship until a healthy balance can be restored. What husband would not be head-over-heels with a wife who, despite her own lack of sexual desire, is willing and finds joy in satisfying his?! And what husband, in such circumstances wouldn’t do anything and everything he could to also support her in her needs?!

    1. Great parables – hopefully the women stumbling on to this story will read them closely.

      In my case we did communicate openly & clearly as most therapists recommend – right from the start. I made clear that the physical and emotional are closely linked for me as they are for most men. I told her verbatim that if if there’s no sex, there’s no love and I made that absolutely clear pre-marriage & kids as I’d watch friend after friend become the nagged husband who is celibate 360 days a year – often told by a wife insulted enough to be desired to “use his hand” only to later to vilify her hubby for having the temerity to fantasize about other women.

      For her part she made clear that if there is no love there is no sex – a reversal but the bottom line is the same for the man. No sex means he is unloved. Sure, she can delude herself that she does love the father of her children even if she is repulsed at the thought of having sex with him. But from the man’s perspective, he no longer has “a relationship” with a woman who lacks the ability to physically show him love and affection.

      Ultimately I wanted to feel like I was a priority – loved and appreciated being the one carrying the full burden of providing consistent income in one of the toughest economies since the depression, yet giving her everything she could ask for… a home, a family, all the support for all the sometimes wacky things the uber-moms on feel compelled to do like co-sleep and breast feed for half a decade.

      But day after day of seeing your wife make everyone and everything else a priority takes it’s toll – she didn’t work, found ample time for yoga, other hobbies, playgroups with wine & cheese,, social media and blogging about every nuance of a false home life she wanted everyone to believe was hers. Yet of course all those other things took priority over even the basic cleaning, cooking, caring for family – very much a texbook case of a narcissistic or other personality disorder of putting herself first, kids second and hubby a very very distant “last.”

      It really seems that what killed the marriage was that I gave her everything she asked for – yet then she kindof resented the whole notion of being a wife and mother. (Other women DO seem to revel in being a Stay at Home Mom and taking pride in taking good care of her kids and husbands – but many of the moms clearly do not.)

      After dealing with years of frustration of more broken vows and promises (as I do believe the marriage vows – especially with our pre-marriage understanding – were a vow of physical & emotional love) with a wife who actually RESENTS her husband desiring her, most men will realize they have but one choice to limit this torture of giving EVERYTHING to one’s wife and family while failing to receive the one thing he wants – love & affection.

      Quite simply – we stop desiring our wives.

      And once that “off” switch is turned off – and we need to endure month after month and year after year of continued torture of finding one’s self in such a toxic relationship, that lack of desire turns to resentment… and then that resentment turns to actual dislike etc.

      At that point, after spending years of open communication explaining that to be treated as a constant non-priority makes one feel less than unloved – less than unappreciated – you just give up. Any complaint or expression of frustration that your once loved wife has turned into little more than a roomate with access to your checks and credit card, typically ended in an argument, perhaps a promise by wifey to change in exchange for hubby doing more and more – only to see that promise again broken…

      Rinse and repeat.

      So you just give up and stop raising it as an issue. You keep your head down, don’t rock the boat and then begin to think of a new life, when the kids are a little older, when you can cut bait and fish for a woman that can give you the love you seek.

      Life is too short to deny yourself that.

      I think the ability of many women to delude themselves that them treating their husbands this way is “normal” results in them ignoring the MOST important gift they can give their kids – a strong and healthy family – until it’s too late.

      And when a woman in hubby’s world who DOES see him and appreciate him – and expresses that she would never treat him like his own wife does – that’s when affairs can happen. I never cheated myself but had many opportunities and find it hard to judge men who’s need to be loved finally boiled over into infidelity. Yes I suppose they are “responsible” for their actions but so too are their wives.

      Most of them very clearly desired only their wives until their wives made clear that they do not wish to be desired.

      My resentment of being treated so poorly simply built until the point that the marriage was unsaveable – she had broken every vow, every promise to love – and I simply could not or would not trust her again, given the never ending cycle of broken promises to FINALLY find some time to love me in a day, week – even monthly affection might have been enough.

      But once trust is gone it’s gone – as any woman who has been cheated on can probably attest – in the case of many men, their wives cheat on them by more than marginalizing their needs and desires for love or making EVERYTHING – including yoga – a higher priority than the man she once loved.

      And I think at the point that many men have grown to the point of frustration, and express that to their wives – even non-verbally – any wife out there better take notice because it may already be too late.

      My advice to any woman reading this is if she’s one of the wives similar to this mom here who finds time for yoga but not their husbands – change IMMEDIATELY and unconditionally if you have a good man/husband/father if you want to keep your family together. FIND THE TIME FOR YOUR HUSBAND. Make him feel like he is a priority.

      Because chances are, if this has already boiled over for an issue for you and your relationship, it’s already very nearly too late to save your marriage. Your husband has likely kept his resentment to himself for a very long time before you even began to notice or realize that you have a problem. By the time he expresses it, you may have already squandered any hope him trusting you in a relationship again.

      And if you don’t love him enough to express that physically on a routine basis – then free him up with an amicable divorce or allow him to satisfy his need to be loved elsewhere and just accept reality… you wanted to be married but not really be a wife – and that’s unsustainable for everyone, and only teaches your kids to seek out a toxic relationship of their own in the future.

  65. I found this article because I am a sexually frustrated man deeply in love with his wife. She once desired me with a passion equal to or greater than my own, but after battling her own addiction, getting sober, and having a baby, her desire for me sexually has disappeared. She still desires affection, loves to be told that she is beautiful, loves to be touched, but does not want to engage in sexual activity.

    A little background: I am 45 and have one failed marriage because of a sexual desire discrepancy. I was the higher desire partner and my first wife was the lower desire sexual partner. After many attempts at communication and compromise, our marriage ended painfully in my infidelity. It was inexcusable and I make no excuses for it. It was wrong of me. And if there are any men who wander down to read my words and they are thinking of cheating, I have one thing to say: it’s wrong; it won’t make you happy; and it will hurt virtually everyone you love. Don’t do it.

    In seeking a new partner, I told everyone I dated that I had a big sex drive but that I was a one woman only kind of guy. I also only pursued women with high sex drives, and I found one. We communicated long distance for a month, met once in person, and fell in love with each other’s mind and heart, and then we spent a week together in which we devoured each other sexually. We had sex in just about every way in every position five times a day. She had an insatiable sex drive. She loved sex. She was highly orgasmic. She enjoyed pornography. She had posed for an erotic photo shoot years before meeting me (she has never, though, let me see the pictures). She had been with both women and men and had at least one “threesome,” something I have never done. But she wasn’t a slut. We had been with about the same number of partners. Her past and our beginning was sexually adventurous, kinky and amazing. She would masturbate in parking lots and dressing rooms and send me dirty pictures and look at porn more than me. She even once spontaneously began masturbating in the car right beside me as we drove down the road one night, just because she was horny and couldn’t wait for us to get home. She loved giving and receiving oral sex. She was never too tired for anything. I had never met any woman like her and we were deeply, hopelessly in love. We married within six months of meeting.

    But, life wasn’t perfect. Her drinking was constant. I began to suspect that she was an alcoholic. Worse, she was an emotional roller coaster. She vacillated from putting me on a pedestal to throwing me down to the gutter. She was emotionally abusive, distrustful, and even at times physically abusive. But we always made up for it with great sex, and she always promised to get help and get clean. Eventually, she went to rehab. Then she became pregnant. Everything got better, except for one thing, the unthinkable: our sex life began to disappear.

    It’s been low for a year now, with constant promises that things will change in the future. I constantly ask her how I can be a better husband and I do everything for her. I embarked on a quest to be the best husband I can be. I don’t make much money but I have a good job with low hours and when I’m not at work I am right by her side. I complement her, help her take care of baby, and help with the housework. When she told me I was too messy, I cleaned up my act over night. I constantly ask her what her needs are, and I make it my duty to serve those needs with great attention. But we just can’t seem to get on the same page when it comes to sex. I almost feel cheated. She knew how sexual I was when we were dating and she matched that sex with her own, but with sobriety and a baby she has no sexual desire. I write her letters and try to communicate in words with her about the importance of maintaining a close sexual relationship with my wife, but she often gets defensive and tells me to stop writing letters. She says I’m being selfish.

    I figure there are only four solutions to this problem (cheating and open marriages are not solutions—they are morally, ethically, and relationally bankrupt). So, here are the four solutions:

    Solution 1—The lower sex partner always determines when, where, and how the couple has sex. This, I think, is the solution that appears to be the one the author is advocating and many others have repeated in the comments. The logic is that no one should ever have to have sex with anyone (including a husband) if they don’t want to. This sounds like sage wisdom. We teach our girls this when they begin dating: “Never, ever, under any circumstance let a boyfriend pressure you into sex when you are not fully ready.” It’s great advice in dating and in early sexual encounters, but is it really true in marriage? Sometimes, yes. No one should be FORCED to have sex with anyone when they are sick or exhausted or just not in the mood. But, taken to the extreme, this gives the lower sex partner in the marriage all the power. This is the winner-take-all-solution for the one who feels low desire. For many women with low desire, their husband’s constant sexual needs seem selfish (I get called selfish all the time because I want a fun, cool, creative, happy and satisfying sex life with my wife). So, male sexuality = men being self-centered and putting their needs above that of their wife’s.

    Solution 2—The higher sex partner always determines when, where, and how the couple has sex. This is the opposite of solution one. This is the winner-take-all solution that some men and some women advocate for male sexual desire. The logic here is also pretty simple and straightforward: if a man is a good husband and provider, he deserves to have his relational needs met, too. If women need comfort, support, affection, and communication from men, men need the intimacy and the connection that sex affords them with their partner. Far from being selfish, a man’s desire for his wife is natural, good, loving, biological and healthy. If it is actually repulsive to be sexual with your husband, you should probably engage in some introspection and ask yourself, “Why do I have no sexual desire for the man who is the father of our children and my helpmate and friend?” Finding them time, even a few minutes, to make your man feel like the most awesome, happy, well-cared for man in the neighborhood is a small price to pay for having a strong, indestructible marriage. Sating your husband’s sexual needs may seem old fashioned and conservative and politically incorrect, but it will make for a stronger partnership and marriage and will put a protective shield around your relationship, making your marriage divorce and affair proof, which will be good for him, good for you, and good for the kids. But, this of course, necessitates that a wife feel at least some enjoyment in the activity. If she literally cringes at the thought of sex, feels sick to her stomach, and resents every encounter, she may well feel empty and devoid of self. She may even feel like she is being used and sexually abused. In no way could feelings like that led to a successful marriage.

    Solution 3—The higher sex partner and the lower sex partner compromise—they work together to agree on how, when and where to have sex. This is obviously the ideal solution, which many above have proposed. It means the higher sex partner has to sacrifice something and the lower sex partner has to sacrifice something, but they somehow meet in the middle, through communication, hard work and lots of love. OF course, even this ideal solution may not work. Let’s say the lower sex partner has virtually NO DESIRE for sex and the higher sex partner would like a daily sexual encounter. Once a month or even once a week would probably satisfy neither. For compromise to work, the two partners have to be at least within the same ballpark. The lower sex partner has to find a way to enjoy sex even when she is not particularly in the mood and the higher sex partner has to maintain his patience, love and affection even on those days and times when no sex will occur.

    Solution 4—Divorce. Enough said. An irreconcilable difference that no amount of communication and compromise can solve drags the couple apart. The woman feels pressured and the man feels rejected. They fight. Nothing gets resolved. They decided they are better off alone than together.

    For each couple, the answer is different. I’m a man and I’m being politically incorrect, but I have no idea why my wife (who in the beginning of our relationship was a hyper sexual person) can’t spend 5, 10, or 20 minutes a day in bed with me. When we do have sex, she appears to be enjoying herself just fine. I look the same and I work constantly to be the best husband I can be. But, I would even work a compromise with her, where we were at least in a routine and I could count on something with regularity. But, she seems determined to take the advice of this author and to deprive me of sex because she has no desire for me or for sex. She tells me I’m being selfish and only considering my needs.

    I find promises that sex will return one day in the future to be hollow. I’m too old, I’ve been around the block a time or two, and I know better. The longer a habit is in place, the harder it is to break. Forcing your husband to be sexless with you for years on end will become the norm. You won’t wake up one day horny and say “I’m back!” It just won’t happen. Habits are habits. Excuses are excuses. Promises are just promises, and without action they are just empty and hollow. My advice to the low sex partner: take some ownership and work to amp up your sex drive. Reconnect with yourself sexually, then reconnect with your husband sexually. Otherwise, you may find yourself face-to-face with a divorce lawyer.

    1. I tend to agree. Although I know I overgeneralize there are two types of women out there. Those who are good wives and mothers, and those who aren’t.

      Those who aren’t claim to be too overwhelmed with being a mom to even consider being a wife, even though the two are connected. This creates a vicious circle that ends in a destroyed relationship.

      Unfortunately from what I can tell, women inacapable of being good wives and mothers never really change, or wake up one day and say “I’m going to start being a good wife and provide my children with an example of a strong loving relationship so they eventually find one too.”

      They can’t come to grips with the reality that they never should have been wives and mothers in the first place and rationalize why they have plenty of time for yoga and other things for themselves, but never any time for their husbands. They may even suggest going to counseling – but even this is an excuse. If you have time for counseling then you have time for your husband. Adding another competing activity will only further limit the time you say you don’t have for your husband. If you just used that time to actually show affection for your husband rather than “go to counseling” you probably wouldn’t need counseling in the first place.

      So if you’re married to such a woman, give up. She won’t change. She can’t change.

      Move on sooner than later and find a good woman, who is capable of being a good wife, and who knows that being a good wife is a critical element of being a good mother.

      Otherwise you’re hurting your kids by patterning a bad relationship for them, and it will only be a matter of time before you are actually divorced.

  66. Ken
    Well, am 34, she’s 28, two great daughters (6 & 4 year oId), and I pretty share all the frustrations that sexual rejection comes with. I have been the so called “good husband” as per the many descriptions given out here. I earn the bigger share of income and pay all major household expenses.
    Without regurgitating on what has been said up here, just to be brief, I worked the shit out of myself so that she could have the energy for even the slightest interest in me but it never worked in my 6.5years out of 7years in marriage. I worked at a commission based sales job, with not even a car to move around, but use public transport and incorporate plenty of walking, and then picked up the kids from daycare, where they’d be dropped off from school, sort them out for the evening ,(bathing, homework, to grocery store and eventual cooking, dinner, clean-up, etc) till they sleep, afterwhich, she’d come home very tired, seating almost the whole day at her workplace and not even have the energy to place only, only, a finger on me. The cycle continued.
    Well, am at a “no point of return” (working on a surprise divorce) & I will be better off divorced, with PEACE of mind, than engage in the usual, cyclic, short-term, “I will try again dear, & I promise it’ll work this time round” than LIVE REGRETTING as to why I didn’t divorce earlier, when I look back.
    My peace of mind is much more valuable, and it will reflect itself in my interaction with my kids when my mind is healthy. I shall still take care of my kids with a healthy mindset, albeit divorced from their mother, even if it means 6months in a year, but I believe it will be much more quality, & of valuable time, than 12months of continued degrading, sucking mindset, year in, year out.
    That’s my current perspective, based on my current scenario. Each has, his or her own.
    Thank you.

  67. Such a polarizing topic. My wife sent this to me around the time of the article and I still look back on it every so often. Still having many of the same issues. Our son is now 6 and we are both very connected on how he is raised. The issues with lack of sex still remain and I find myself feeling like many of the frustrated men, who tried very hard, but feel rejected, unloved, unappreciated and last on the list of things that are important. I admit that my feelings over the past 2 years have deminished. I feel resentment and anger. I wonder how a woman that had so much passion for me, suddenly flipped the switch. Most of my reasons for staying are because of the fear of damage to our child. We get along quite well for the most part, but for me the lack of attention I get is slowly eroding our marriage and my heartfelt feelings for the woman I fell in love with. Like many of the male commentors, I do not want pitty sex or other sexual favors out of her obligation, but I am reaching a point in the relationship where I am considering my overall happiness.

    1. Exactly EOJ – I don’t care how wives rationalize it – they are killing their marriage and hurting their family and children by taking this approach.

      And if there’s one thing more insulting than being a complete afterthought & the lowest priority for your wife (as even the author chortles about finding time for yoga – but not her husband) only complete passionless “duty” sex would make one feel worse. Many women focus on only the physical needs (“use your hand!” – as if we got married to become celibate?) it’s actually the emotional connection we crave and although we try to delude ourselves otherwise, a sexless wife’s actions tell us that, no, you are NOT a bigger priority than Yoga or any of the other hundreds of activities that are always ahead of you in the pecking order

      These actions by sexless wives will lead to cheating and divorce – and as painful as that may be for children, it would be worse living with unhappy parents.

      I encourage you to take care of your own needs so that you can take care of your kids (i.e. put the oxygen mask on yourself so that you can keep working and keep providing for your family)

      I wish I could give you hope that your wife will have a wake up call, but you’ve already figured out that the “we’ll have sex again when he’s in nursery school/kindergarten/elementary school” never seems to happen

      There’s two types of women out there – those who would NEVER ignore their marriage, and those who will ALWAYS find a new excuse to ignore their marriage

      Start planning your divorce is my advice – whatever that means in terms of getting back in shape, squirriling away money you’d otherwise lose – and look ahead to having a happy life with a woman who truly DOES love you

      Your son may one day thank you for demonstrating what a good and healthy relationship is all about. The alternative is that you are teaching him to accept the same type of marriage you have – so you’d only be damning him to the same loveless marriage you unfortunately stumbled into

  68. I don’t understand this, I am so sexually frustrated. My wife and I only have sex 20times a year or so. We have had several talks on this issue over and over but I don’t get it anymore. The kids, the chores, the fatigue!

    It’s a new year and we have only had sex once and I am not sure the next one will be happening anytime soon. Cheating isn’t an option for me but I am so frustrated right now…

    1. sorry to hear you’re in this boat too

      I assume you’re helping with the kids and the chores as much as she does (assuming she works outside the home as well) – but not even this usually changes things. Taking care of kids is simply an excuse as to why she’s placed her family on the path to divorce.

      As far as cheating, I’m of a mindset that she’s already cheating on YOU. She has put other priorities ahead of you – and she is not living up to her wedding vows. Getting caught cheating of course results in pain for her and her kids (though infidelity is not relevant in divorce any more) – but the pain for your family by her celibate ways is worse, and you’re only setting your kids up to have a very unhealthy marriage themselves if you don’t provide an example of what a loving wife is supposed to be by depriving yourself

      I’m boggled by how many women can be so selfish to do this to their husbands and children. In the end they will miss out on half their kids childhood because of it. All I can guess is that these women WANT to be divorced so they only have the kids half the time.

      It’s very sad – but take care of your own needs however you can, as she never will (that being said, in my case my wife was sexless 360 days a year on average, so if she offered 20x a year that would be 4 times the amount of sex I ever experienced!)

      But this behavior by wives is unacceptable and those that enable and encourage wives to be celibate are contributing to a high divorce rate

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