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#1 of 82 Old 05-22-2013, 03:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#2 of 82 Old 05-22-2013, 03:56 PM
 
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There is an obvious answer here. Cook dinner do laundry. Free up that time so she can have more time for you.
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#3 of 82 Old 05-22-2013, 04:00 PM
 
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I don't have much advice, just hugs. You may want to post this in Parents as Partners for better results.

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#4 of 82 Old 05-22-2013, 04:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#5 of 82 Old 05-22-2013, 04:05 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ronart View Post

In response to LLQ1011:

Thank you for the reply.  Your suggestion is not helpful.  From a simple post with limited information there is no way for you to understand our situation that would allow you to provide such a simple solution.  This is why I asked for people to share their personal experiences, not solve my problems. 

I didn't think the post you are referring to was very helpful either! As for my experience we are definitely going through a "dry" period in our marriage. I think a lot of folks do when the children are small. But my husband and I cuddle a lot and show lots of affection. We also have help with our child so we can go out together sometimes (he is out of town a lot).

I hope you find a resolution!

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#6 of 82 Old 05-22-2013, 04:07 PM
 
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I just have to say that I kind of wish this was s post from my partner, since you've just very perceptively described our post-baby relationship. I don't think my partner would be able to sum it up as well as you have, but it makes me wonder if he's feeling the same. Anyway, as a woman in a similar position, I think I might be most receptive to passing moments of affection. I know I'd love a reminder of how things used to be when we were "newly in love.". My partner tries to do this sexually, which backfires. I'd prefer him to compliment my personality, or be inspired to kiss me based on some witty story I told. Little reminders that he likes all those little things that make me "me.".
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#7 of 82 Old 05-22-2013, 04:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#8 of 82 Old 05-22-2013, 04:38 PM
 
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How old is your child?  Is your wife nursing?  I feel for you. You do sound like you're complaining, but it's a fair complaint.

 

LQ1011's answer, while blunt and flippant, is definitely part of the answer. Wash your own clothes. Start today. This is easy. I am a stay-at-home mom, my husband works50 hours a week and has washed his own clothes since he was a teen. And that man is a clothes horse, has 3 times more clothes than I do.

 

Make dinner for the family. Not every day, but regularly. Doesn't have to be complex.  I tell you, it's a relief to me when my husband simply calls for takeout, goes and brings it home and sets out the dishes.  However, if I was your wife, and you didn't know how to cook, I would deeply appreciate it if you learned how to cook a hot meal or two.  Boil spaghetti, heat a jar of sauce, make a salad. Set the table.

 

Change the poopy diapers. At least once a day. And be insistent. I bet the first time you offer to change your kid's diaper she's going to look at you like you've grown a second head.  Just say, "Come on, I'll do this one. You finish what you're doing/finish your breakfast/stare into space."

 

Don't allow yourself to be spoiled! It's just not okay. 

 

There's also the whole emotional aspect of parenthood, and how this changes your relationship, but I've gotta go. Suffice it to say, you aren't alone at all. Marriage with children is really tough. 


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#9 of 82 Old 05-22-2013, 05:26 PM
 
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We're also going through a rough patch affection wise. We have a 26 month old and are expecting baby number two. Right now touching makes me physically uncomfortable. I'm not talking about foreplay but cuddling, etc. The pregnancy hormones are making me need my space physically and I'm always exhausted after chasing my 2 year old. The best thing hubby does for me is take her to the park for an hour after dinner then gives her a bath without being asked. I'm off the clock and can be simply me. He's a very laid back guy and I usually have to ask him to help with things. That drives me crazy because even though he helps, I still feel like I'm in charge and the responsibility is on my shoulders. What I LOVE, that honestly makes me want to hug him and give him a kiss (and I do!) is when he does a chore that's usually "mine" without prompting. I love walking into the kitchen and see the pots I was dreading to wash gleaming and shiny on the drying rack or a laundry basket full of my clothes clean and dry. These little things say "I may be tired but you do so much, I want to lighten your load anyways". This is what makes this particular overtired, sleep deprived, touched out mama want to get affectionate smile.gif
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#10 of 82 Old 05-22-2013, 09:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#11 of 82 Old 05-22-2013, 09:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#12 of 82 Old 05-23-2013, 02:26 AM
 
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Originally Posted by ronart View Post

The words you used, "touching makes me physically uncomfortable" sounds familier.  My lovely wife and I have a open and honest dialoge and she has shared the same feeling using the exact same words.  Thanks for the reminder, sometimes it is easy to forget.  

Tonight I did some "chores" without prompting and I got some darling eyes looking my way.  

You post is very thoughtful and helpful.  Thanks for sharing. 

I'm glad you found my response helpful. It may be a simple thing you did for her but believe me, you made her day, possibly her week. At this stage in a relationship (young child(ren)) I bet your wife knows about your boundless love and affection for her and if she's anything like me, she is hoping you don't resent the fact that although she shares your feelings, she's having a very tough time reciprocating. I'll share that at least for us, the physical closeness resurfaced when my girl was about 18 months or so. Then we had one evening of spontaneous intimacy (highly enjoyable on both sides btw) and BAM! Pregnancy #2! We lost our groove as soon as we found it. DH has been very understanding and patient about my touch aversion; it's simply how I feel while pregnant or nursing a young child. I think it's a mama lion thing; leave me be to grow/feed/take care of my cub if you know what's good for you. I honestly feel guilty about not wanting to snuggle with my partner. Through that lovely open dialogue you mentioned, we discuss it and agree to weather the storm and reconnect on the other side. If your wife is ANYTHING like me, this is a temporary setback and the love is there, it just needs time to come out as affection once these crazy intense instincts about her young child die down. She's very fortunate to have such an understanding partner who misses her. She misses you too but simply can't reciprocate at the moment.
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#13 of 82 Old 05-23-2013, 06:44 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ronart View Post

Thanks for your post.  I agree with you, while sex is a form of love and affection it is not the only necessary means at maintaining a passionate and affectionate relationship.  While our sex life has diminished considerably, it is so far from what I truly find missing in our relationship. The simple touch and warmth of your partners body cuddled into your own is such a healing feeling.  An affectionate moment of eyes locked, hands touching, and a gentle kiss on the lips is enough to charge my battery for the day.  Sex does not have to be the end all of every passionate gesture, though as a guy we do wish it is, but as a loving partner it does not need to be.  

 

NEWMAMALIZZY:

Could you provide some suggestions on what type of 'little reminders" would work from your partner to you?

 

 

Actually, what you just described as NOT sexual forms of affection are exactly the things that drive me nuts - "affectionate moment of eyes locked, hands touching"....In the relationship between my partner and I, I'm so engulfed in my life with my young daughter that I feel like there's no foundation for that sort of affection.  For me, it has to go back to the kind of feelings that lead us to WANT to lock eyes and touch hands.  Pre-romantic relationship type of feelings.  I need to be reminded why I'm the one that he fell in love with - because I need to be reminded that I'm a person beyond being a mother.  Suggestions...I want my partner to notice the little things I'm good at and compliment them.  I want him to smile at the way I tell a story.  I want him to spontaneously tell me that I'm cute.  I guess I can't explain it very well, but I just really want to see him respond to my not-mommy self. 

 

But...I also would not argue if someone did a chore for me unasked :) 

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#14 of 82 Old 05-23-2013, 10:54 PM
 
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This might not be helpful but my ex and I were young when we had our DD and married but we kept a close relationship by talk about little things, putting our DD in a backpack carrier and walking to a restaurant to eat or to the store to get something and just holding hands on the walk, he would hold her every night so I could shower from day one, and we got books and talked openly about what we needed sexually.

These things postponed our inevitable divorce and helped me see past a lot of the self centered behavior. Those things are the things I look back on and believe he did well. In fact if it hadn't been for his attempt at violence we would probably still be married, though very unhappily because I really built up a lot of resentment towards him after five years of doing almost everything at home and at work with nothing but a shower and good sex to show for it.
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#15 of 82 Old 05-23-2013, 11:07 PM
 
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I am an affectionate person and I have high libido but if I was your wife, I would be doing the same thing. Why would I be affectionate with a "spoiled" person who does nothing around the house?

 

Start helping more.

 

Get a housekeeper if you can afford it.

 

Establish a weekly date night. Either hire a babysitter or trade babysitting with other couple.

 

After baby goes to sleep, take a bath  together. Massage her back. Give affection without expecting anything back.

 

Take a child to a park and let her nap.

 

Go to marriage counseling

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#16 of 82 Old 05-24-2013, 05:38 AM
 
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I think it's unfair to assume he's being spoiled. My DBF works, a hard physical job, and is out of the house from 6 am to 8 pm in the summer months. He's beyond exhausted when he gets home, but still does supper dishes each night - often at 3 in the morning because he conks out on the couch after supper and can't wake up. I wish more sense of leadership from him, but certainly not more physical help. I wish I could have more help, but I think he's as much at his limit as I. I assume the OP is also doing all he can in that regard.
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#17 of 82 Old 05-24-2013, 07:07 AM
 
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I agree that it's unfair and unhelpful to call him spoiled when you really don't know anything about his situation and how their marriage is set up. My husband never cooks or washes dishes but he works so much that it's really not fair to ask him to do that. He does his laundry right now that I'm pregnant but when I wasn't I tried to get to his laundry as well. The man is out of town 75% of the time. From this man's post we know nothing about his work life. He's just trying to vent.

Honestly I think the unfairness has more to do with the fact that he's a man than anything else.

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#18 of 82 Old 05-24-2013, 07:13 AM
 
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Yes, Newmamalizzy, YES!!! I have never articulated this to myself so well, much less my partner. Thank you for expressing it so well. I suspect this perspective will be helpful for Ronart, too!

"Actually, what you just described as NOT sexual forms of affection are exactly the things that drive me nuts - "affectionate moment of eyes locked, hands touching"....In the relationship between my partner and I, I'm so engulfed in my life with my young daughter that I feel like there's no foundation for that sort of affection. For me, it has to go back to the kind of feelings that lead us to WANT to lock eyes and touch hands. Pre-romantic relationship type of feelings. I need to be reminded why I'm the one that he fell in love with - because I need to be reminded that I'm a person beyond being a mother. Suggestions...I want my partner to notice the little things I'm good at and compliment them. I want him to smile at the way I tell a story. I want him to spontaneously tell me that I'm cute. I guess I can't explain it very well, but I just really want to see him respond to my not-mommy self.

But...I also would not argue if someone did a chore for me unasked smile.gif "
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#19 of 82 Old 05-24-2013, 07:17 AM
 
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Newmamalizzy OR Ronart... Any suggestions on how one might let her partner know that aforementioned desire without seeming like she is trying to change or coerce her partner? I find that talking about my needs for stuff like that often just results in him feeling defensive or thinking he's not good enough to "make me happy". I hope this isn't too much of a thread hijack, but understand if you don't care to take this tangent. Cheers!
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#20 of 82 Old 05-24-2013, 11:13 AM
 
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I am tired of men getting a free pass.

 

It did not matter how many hours I worked or work, or how many jobs, I still took care of kids and housework.


And yet I had to hear from my ex "But I worked long hours"

 

So what? We all work hard but somehow more women manage to do other things on top of work.

 

And it is not amount of house  work that counts, it is doing something that helps!

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#21 of 82 Old 05-24-2013, 11:30 AM
 
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I am tired of men getting a free pass.

It did not matter how many hours I worked or work, or how many jobs, I still took care of kids and housework.


And yet I had to hear from my ex "But I worked long hours"

So what? We all work hard but somehow more women manage to do other things on top of work.

And it is not amount of house  work that counts, it is doing something that helps!

Your experience is not the OP's experience. No one really knows the OP's experience, except the OP and his wife. It's not fair to paint every man with the same brush.

My husband does not get a "free pass". He works like crazy. He travels like crazy. He does it all for his family. He is very appreciative of me as I am him. When he comes homes at 10pm after traveling for sixteen hours the previous day I am not going to scold him for not making breakfast!

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#22 of 82 Old 05-24-2013, 11:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#23 of 82 Old 05-25-2013, 12:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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#24 of 82 Old 05-25-2013, 04:38 AM
 
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One thing to remember is that, with small children, being the primary caregiver is often a very tactile thing. When there is (finally) some respite (like when kiddo is asleep), touching can be the last thing one wants.

 

Additionally, the primary caregiver often has to put aside his/her needs/wants when they are "on the job". I, personally, found it more difficult being a SAHP than working outside the home. With the former, I spent entire days with only the child to talk to, do things with/for, etc. When I worked, I could talk to other adults, choose what to have for lunch, go to the bathroom by myself when I wanted/needed. 

 

With our first child, I stayed home (my company was shutting down, and had started laying employees off. I requested to be in the wave of layoffs that coincided with our son's birth). Since my spouse was working, it made sense that I would do nights with the babe as well. All I asked was one night (Fri or Sat) where I could sleep and he would get up, so that I could recharge. Unfortunately, his idea of caring for the child at night was to turn on all the lights, play with the child as loudly as possible, and then bring him to me with "I just can't get him back to sleep!" I quickly learned that it made more sense for me to just get up myself. (And yes, he eventually admitted that he did it on purpose so I'd just get up myself.) I can tell you that it did not make me particularly enthused to provide affection of any sort. 

 

I know another thing I found was that I felt my child actually DID need me. He could not do for himself, so it had to be done for him. My (now ex) husband? Was a grown man and really could have done some things, instead of expecting them to be done for him. I felt that we were supposed to be partners, raising our child together - him by going out to work, me by staying home, but at the end of the day sharing the raising of our child. But it felt like his job ended at 5pm, while mine not only ran 24/7 but the workload increased at 5pm, when I suddenly acquired what seemed to be a second child. It created a lot of resentment. 

 

OP - you asked for people's experiences, and you've received others as well. But somehow, you get nasty when we share OUR experiences with you. Obviously, we are not in your marriage - but you asked for our input/experiences. But you might actually learn something from what we're posting. Your choice.

 

And to those who have said it's not fair to call OP spoiled? He is the one who described himself as such. 

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#25 of 82 Old 05-25-2013, 09:26 AM
 
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He was calling himself spoiled as a way of showing appreciation and recognition for everything his wife does. He wasn't saying what some are suggesting: "I am lazy and don't appreciate my wife. I expect her to do everything because I am the man and that's how it's supposed to be."

I'm sorry, OP. Unfortunately, many people come to these boards to commiserate and for compassion. It's inevitable that others come to judge and make assumptions, usually negative ones. That's just how the Internet is, I guess.. :-/

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#26 of 82 Old 05-25-2013, 09:31 AM - Thread Starter
 
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#27 of 82 Old 05-25-2013, 09:38 AM
 
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OP, since your sharing these responses with your wife, has that opened up the communication a bit regarding the loss of affection? I think if you are able to show her this thread that would be a great way to begin the process back to showing more affection toward each other. :-)

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#28 of 82 Old 05-25-2013, 10:18 AM
 
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I really enjoyed your post.  You provided some very useful insight from your own personal experiences. 

 

Like you, my wife has a 24/7 gig.  I am amazed at her resolve.  I am encouraged by her commitment.  Women like you and wife inspire me.  Your ex lost out big by not understanding, accepting, or honoring the passion you invest into parenting.  

 

I am appreciative of you calling out my "nasty" responses to peoples posts.  Correct me if I am wrong, but when someone shares their own experiences I have always honored and appreciated their contributions to the thread.  I only get "nasty" when someone tells me what I need to do.  I never asked for direct advise on what I need to change in my behavior I simple asked for people to share their experiences.  I have learned a lot from posts like yours.  I learn from the shared experiences from the wonderful people on this site.  My hope is that those who failed to provide their experiences and simply attempted to provide specific behavior changes in myself will read our posts and understand what is most helpful.  

 

I did call myself spoiled because I am.  I just asked my wife if I spoil her, and she said yes. We believe that it is our job to spoil one another.  We love and cherish each other and make considerable efforts make the other feel appreciated and loved.  We love spoiling the other, and our little one.

 

And fair enough. I will say that I think you took a lot pf the posts the wrong way. Yes, they told you what they felt you should do - but from the vantage point of what they wished they had gotten. They really did provide what you asked for, but in a way you may not have appreciated. Something to consider. 

 

My ex? There is a lot more involved than what I posted, most of which is not relevant here. But did he lose a lot? Yes, he did. 15 years later, he has a minimal relationship with our oldest child, and none with our youngest. Both are really amazing kids. Just kids that followed their own paths instead of those he wanted to direct. But hey - he has a new wife and new (step)kids. <shrug>

 

<other thoughts> 

 

I remember when our oldest was still wee... I had played softball with my former company once a week, and that was something I REALLY wanted to continue. I figured it gave me a couple of hours to myself, being physical (and therefore losing a bit of baby weight), connecting with friends and recharging. He was all for that! As long as I took the babe with me. Kind of defeated the purpose. Luckily, the team (girls AND guys) stepped in when I was up or in the field to watch him. But God Forbid if I stayed a half hour or so after the game to shoot the breeze. Having those three hours a week (half hour warm-up, hour and a half game, half hour after)? Would have done so much for our relationship. 

 

His business travel 2-3 weeks a month? We got used to life without him. (And no - it was not required)

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#29 of 82 Old 05-25-2013, 12:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#30 of 82 Old 05-25-2013, 01:41 PM
 
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IF we are so nasty and bitter, how come you are the one posting here about your loss of affection? You are not taking anyone's advice but it is obvious that whatever it is you are doing is not working.

 

Even with all of my ex's shortcomings, I always wanted to give affections and sex to him, and I did because while not perfect, he would never call himself "spoiled" as he did what he could. Than deep understanding of what he needed to do came after I went away on a work trip for a month and left him alone with 2 kids under age 3.

 

People do not stop having sex or giving affection to another person for no reason.

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