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Do all marriages eventually become passionless marriages of convenience?
September 12, 2005
12:09 pm
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Anonymous
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lucky - aren't you the one that complained that these women ONLY think of you as a friend?

good gosh, but doesn't the idea of your vows and their vows mean ANYTHING?

yes, you can open up to them - but only cuz you are hiding behind a computer screen.

there is a book I just read on surviving infidelity - "NOT just friends" or something like that - and it is based on modern day premises and how people start out on the slippery slope by opening up intimate details to people online and how "just friends" developes into something so much more - and the slippery slope.

and it does validate that you ARE cheating on your wife. maybe not sexually - but emotionally. you are sharing intimacy with someone other than your partner. again, not sexually, but emotionally.

if you aren't happy - LEAVE - please stop asking why you should stay. You obviously do not want to. We can't change your mind - or make you do anything. It's up to you.

you always talk about what you want and need - but never discuss what she has had to say about all this - leads me to wonder how in the dark she is about your true feelings.

you may NOT ever find what you are dreaming of - or you might.

is staying married to someone that makes you so miserable worth putting up with - and are you being fair to her and your son - what are you teaching your son? what kind of marriage do you think he will seek after seeing you and your wife together? children live what they learn - and they observe more than we realize.

We all have fears about being single again - but that's part of life - and something you will need to get thru to move on - or you will simply have to accept the misery you live with and stop complaining about it and enjoy what you DO have.

I"m sorry I can't be much more supportive, you just seem to be wanting us to tell you what you want to hear...but I can't even seem to figure out what you want to hear either.

September 12, 2005
1:02 pm
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taj64
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I agree with Ali. I think marriage counseling would be a good idea. It can teach you both to be better at communicating what you want in the marriage so that you are not looking elsewhere for those emotional needs. Right now, there is a block/wall between you two. Once broken, you might have exactly what each other wants. Some people stay together for the comfort of it, they don't know any other way. Some stay out of fear. It can be passionate again but you have to want to try.

September 12, 2005
1:31 pm
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Hey Luckyguy,
I think the answer to your question is very complicated but you have got some good input here. I myself and my beautiful wife have been married for 36years and are both in our late 50’s. Basically, we have never had much in common with the exception of each other. We love each other very much and that has proven itself over our years together. Our marriage & relationship has survived many obstacles including the death of one of our children, my alcoholism (in recovery for several years now), my infatuation with another woman, hers with another man, and sorted other little mishaps along the way. We both have suffered from depression and several physical ailments also. I can only say that this was certainly not a marriage made in heaven but we have worked very hard to make it meaningful. We are both committed to the union and believe it or not, we still have much passion for our relationship and for each other. We have a very healthy sexual relationship even in spite of my wife being sexually abused when a child. She has dealt with that and it does not hold her back any more. I believe the most important thing though is that we both strive and work for emotional intimacy in our relationship. We try not to keep secrets and we try very hard to “tell on ourselves” when we do something we are not proud of. We are definitely best friends, that’s for sure. I think that overall, we have a very realistic and honest relationship. We have both somehow accepted the fact that we are both human and make mistakes. We have also accepted that life isn’t always easy but we can learn from each other and from what life has thrown at us. Believe me, this has not come easily either…pain is a great motivator but fortunately, we both believe that WE are worth working thru it and that is what it takes to have a solid time tested relationship. I have high hopes of us being together until the day we die. Good luck to you and I believe that if you and your mate are willing to give each other a break and do whatever it takes, then you can have a rewarding, exciting and passionate marriage. PS, instead of looking for things you have in common, try celebrating your differences, I think you will like it!!

September 12, 2005
2:48 pm
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kathygy
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Holly,

sexual addiction can also be having frequent sex with unavailable men when what you really want is love and intimacy from a man.

Lucky,

I agree with what has been said here. You need to stand up to your wife and insist that she treat you with respect. I think going to marriage counseling is worth a try but you need to build your own sense of security, work on becoming more confident. it sounds like you are hiding behind that self image so you don't have to take any risks. Do you want to change and grow? If yes, take steps to do that. Being alone is much better than being in a relationship that is not good for you. You need to get over your fear of being alone to help you think more clearly. Think about what is best for you. Don't worry about your wife.

love,
kathy

September 12, 2005
6:11 pm
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Neshema
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I will say it again, "What do you have to offer your wife?" "What does she have to offer you?" Did you ever give your marriage a chance?

September 12, 2005
6:38 pm
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Matteo
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Luckyguy,

Please, do yourself a favor, take all the possible therapy you can for yourself, to gain your self-esteem, to work on your issues related to your mother, and the effects of your marriage on you, and walk away from your abusive wife.

If I were you I would also take your child with you for every other week – full time for the whole week. Do it for the sake of you and your child.

You will be able to make it on your own, just like many others did before and do it everyday. You will be able to meet someone much more compatible with you than your wife is, with whom you will not be afraid to share and open up, someone who will be able to open up themselves and encourage you to do the same instead of criticizing you and effectively shutting you down. Someone, who will love you for who you are, instead of condemning you for who you are not.

Even if not – it is better, much better, to leave alone than in an abusive relationship, where you have neither respect nor appreciation, and where your self esteem is being crushed on a regular basis.

What happened to compatibility - shared goals, views, opinions, interests, dreams and desires, what happened to love, admiration, appreciation, attention, care, support, compassion, devotion, trust, respect, where is personal space, intimacy, sexuality and sensuality between the soul mates? How does she define “soul mates”??? Do you have all that in your marriage?

Of course, you wife will tell you that you are her soul mate; every abusive person will try to do the same to their victim: convince them, that they should spend the rest of their lives together, and that there is no other chance for this person, because they are so awful, that nobody else will want them, and basically the abuser is making them a favor by being with them. That’s a classic. Didn't your wife do that to you by telling this to your friend?

That just shows, how grossly she underestimates you, and how comfortable she is in that situation, walking all over you for close to 20 years. She has no regards for your suffering, but you are afraid to hurt her. I am sure that you have a lot to offer to a loving person, and that you will be able to find a mate who will appreciate you, just like your friends do. And, if your wife really is that great person, I am sure she will be able to do the same for herself. After all, you both may end up happier with other partners than you are with each other!

It is highly advisable to work on a marriage to try to save it, but you need a right, loving partner to do that, in order to be successful, and I don’t see that this is your case. Unless you want to spend the next 20 years looking for, and trying to recreate something which never existed in the first place, walk away. The choice is yours. This is what I would do. This is what I did in the past, and NEVER regretted it!

September 12, 2005
7:01 pm
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Neshema
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How do we know she is abusive? I have not heard one positive thing from Lucky. He didn't love her, but he married her anyway. Why did he marry her? This sounds like self-defeating behavior to me. It is time to be accountable and stop blaming. I ask you again, "what can you offer your wife, and what can she offer you?"

September 12, 2005
7:44 pm
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Shaney
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You've been given tons of good advice and many examples of successful marriages. These marriages all have common ingredients, and two partners who communicate and work toward a common goal. I'm not sure, based on your posts, that your marriage ever had any of these things. But it's difficult to make that assumption only knowing your side of the story . Your wife may have a totally different perspective on everything. That's probably the case. What I do hear in your posts for sure, is that you've never been happy and the only reason you won't leave her is because you're afraid to be alone - you don't think anyone else will want you. I think you'd leave in a heartbeat if you found someone, and to tell you the truth, I think you've been testing the waters, trying to find someone for some time. If hurting your wife is a concern, it's going to be more devastating to her if you leave her for another woman, than it will be if you leave her because there has never been any love or passion between you. The both of you deserve to exit this marriage of convenience with a little integrity, in hopes of finding the love you both are desperately seeking.

Just my opinion - good luck in making a decision.

September 12, 2005
8:00 pm
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Neshema
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The more you post, the more I hear you blame and not take responsibility. You stay because you are afraid. We don't know that she is abusive. Is she abusive? You are depressed. Is it that you could not be satisfied no matter what? What can you do to improve matters? It will take work whether you stay with her or find someone else. How do you know it magically will be better with someone else? I worry that you seem to think someone else will bring to the table all that is lacking in your life.

September 12, 2005
9:47 pm
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LouWho
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Lucky-

Yes, all marriages dwindle down to the layers upon layers upon layers of crap to a certain extent, thereby missing the passion mark by a mile. It is the nature of the beast.

But all things do. Can you imagine doing the same job everyday for the rest of your life? Some people do.

I guess some people are successful in finding ways to appreciate what they have.

Passion's great, but it always ends, all good rides do. I like the thought that the man lying next to me is now committed to my survival and happiness. Sure it would be nice if he looked at me like I was a 22 year old hottie, but I'm not. Neither is he. I couldn't keep a 22 year old hottie's interest any longer than I could balance an elephant on the end of my nose.

And the thought of all that work involved in keeping passion alive is really more than I want to get into. And let's be honest, I know all his moves, he knows all of mine.

I value a good laugh with him more than hot sex could ever interest me these days, and sometimes after a good hardy laugh, I can see the things in him that originally sparked my interest in him, and then I actually forget some of the tedious crap that goes on day after mindless day.

If even that is gone, then you need to think about making a change, because chances may just be that she's thinking the same thing too, and in that case, someone needs to pull the trigger and get on the bus, gus, make a new plan, stan, don't need to be coy, Roy.......

September 12, 2005
9:49 pm
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Anonymous
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You have shared a lot that shows how marriages degrade. You said:

"What is the foundation was never strong to begin with... and it just got worse from there? A marriage based on lies, mistrust, and one-way communication. What if there's just no common foundation to fall back on? Is there any hope?"

My XH and I were considered loving birds until I put some clothes in a laundry bag and told him I was leaving to work (ending up 10K miles away). I still suffer for that depressive impulsive atittude. But marriages do degrade and it takes two to tango.

Even though I still suffer, I´m taking my share of blame and moving on very very slowly for actually almost 7 years because I feel there is no hope. Relationships have become too individualistic in general. My X doesn´t want to get married again and neither do I. [[Though I´d love to have a loving man neighbor so we could each do things our way]]. I´m tired of giving in - specially for fears such as the scenario of my parents marriage or the pushy and heavy set body demeanor of my X. Although fear, guilt, blame are not very good to build anything on they force us to reflect (some just prefer to think about how to blame others - attack is the best defense for them). But h o p e, there is one: we were not made to suffer nor make suffer. And only I and God know the strength I needed to leave. I actually left the car keys under the car because I didn´t know where I was going but I wasn´t going to change my decision. A CODA friend had told me "well, to give some time is to give s o m e time.

I guess if things can get worse, they can also get better but I would leave again in my case even knowing the results because to stay with someone and not being able to share our lives was too painful for me. Maybe I could have insisted on a child as a commom bond since he´d do it for me but I couldn´t force a child into our life to check, neither be a single mother.
My thread says "marriage leaves wrath" but I never like to see people separate until they´ve tried therapy and all that. The marriage institution and the relationships codes and tacit assumptions have been very shaken. A first time serious relationship is the hardest because one i finding what s/he can really give, really needs and perhaps what s/he really wants.

I hope this helps, just remember it´s your decision. I shouldn´t tell you do it or don´t until I have walked a mile in your shoes and then I´d be a mile away.

September 13, 2005
4:17 pm
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I have been married for 16 years. And even tho there have been good and bad times I was always in love with him and could never understand how people fall out of love with each other. UNTIL, this last six months or so. We have not connected for a long time. we just seem to have started growing apart. and hard as i try we just aren't bouncing back like we always did in the past. life is getting really lonley. and I am afraid of what my future holds. The longer neither one of us tries, the less love I feel from him and the less love i feel for him. I really think we need some outside help. I definately feel like I am in a marraige now with no passion, still sex, just no passion. I don't like it all. Never thought my marraige would be like this. I hope it doesn't mean it will always be this way. but I don't believe in fairytales either. and I don't believe that all people who have been married for several years are happy. or have always been happy. I'm sure people who see my husband and I have no clue that we aren't happy as can be. You just never know what other people are going through.

Let's hope for some light at the end of the tunnel.

September 13, 2005
5:24 pm
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luckyguy
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mamacinnamon

I appreciate the positive advice you have given. I wanted to answer two of your questions:

1. Did you love your wife when you married her? I know I needed someone in my life. I know I had feelings for her. I know she loved me. But I was not ready to marry when we did.

2. Was she the one for you? No. I never felt like she was. I felt like she was all I could get, and I was lonely, so I married her.

My wife and I respect each other, she loves me, and I care about her. But we don't have the strong foundation you speak of. Our marriage was a MAJOR disappointment to me from the start, primarily due to sexual problems.

Read the topic entitled "The story of my life. I don't know what to do.", which is the first topic I posted, dated August 24, 2005. I posted the whole story there.

Those female friends may be marriage killers. It's quite possible. But it may be long overdue.

September 13, 2005
5:35 pm
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luckyguy
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Neshema

I know what you are saying, and you are right. I've been trying to dig deep for 17 years. That's why we are seeing a marriage councellor and our own therapists. But, at some point one becomes tired of digging and digging and still being disappointed. At what point do you say, enough is enough? That's what I'm trying to determine now.

I know I sound very negative, but I am very tired of disappointment.

September 13, 2005
5:43 pm
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luckyguy
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juniormint

"how do you fix something that isn't broken, but just missing?"

Exactly how I feel right now. How do I fix something that was never there in the first place?

CODA_Mom

No. I have absolutely no fear of her ever leaving me. She would stay with me for the rest of our lives. I have no doubt of that. And that's what makes me feel so guilty. I don't feel the same. 🙁

I've never been as honest and open with her in my entire life as I am right now. Which has made things worse. Instead of living a lie and pretending things are wonderful, I am now facing the ugly truth.

September 13, 2005
6:09 pm
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Neshema
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Ya know, lucky-

if you were not so self-absorbed, you would read mamacin's name describes her as a woman, not a man. I am beginning to side with your wife. I am going to stop reading these posts. I cannot offer you support, because I feel like we are enabling you.

September 13, 2005
6:12 pm
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miss_tater_head
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Luckyguy,

You're right about one thing. You are a "lucky guy" to have a woman that is committed to your for the rest of your life. She deserves the same. I've heard men like you tell me the same sob story a thousand times. "She's not my soul mate." Bologna! The only person you can control is yourself. If you worked on being a soul mate instead of critiquing her for not being yours, you'd probably have a better marriage. You are not even close to emotionally committed to your wife. The computer chatting has got to go! The questioning about whether she's your soul mate has got to go! You've already made a vow to her and to God, now suck it up and make good on your promise to be with this woman. She's respected her vows, learn from her.

September 13, 2005
10:17 pm
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luckyguy
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Neshema

Yes, I am well aware that mamacinnamon is a woman. I had attempted to reprint her questions and then answer them, but I guess it was not clear the way I formatted it. I apologize for not making it clearer. Let me reformat it here:

Question 1 [mamacinnamon]: Did you love your wife when you married her?

Answer 1 [LukyGuy]: I know I needed someone in my life. I know I had feelings for her. I know she loved me. But I was not ready to marry when we did.

Question 2 [mamacinnamon]: Was she the one for you?

Answer 2 [LunkyGuy]: No. I never felt like she was. I felt like she was all I could get, and I was lonely, so I married her.

Thank you for your support.

September 13, 2005
10:41 pm
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gingerleigh
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Let's all do a reality check and make sure that we aren't projecting past people's personalities that we've know onto Luckyguy.

September 13, 2005
10:59 pm
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Neshema
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do u married her for the wrong reasons, so now you have the right to abandon her.

September 13, 2005
11:19 pm
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Neshema
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that is, you married her for the wrong reasons, so u now have the right to abandon her?

September 14, 2005
12:47 am
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luckyguy
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The Wall

Thank you so much for your advice once again. It is always very helpful. 🙂

Well, you are right. I find it much easier to meet friends in general on the computer. I've never been good at meeting people in person, because I am very shy and self-conscious about my appearance. But once I know a person, the initial shyness is gone, the self-consciousness is gone, and I have no trouble relating to them in person. I don't agree with being infatuated with the computer screen itself. The computer is simply a communications device just as the telephone is.

You did have many good points about the computer. It's quite different to actually live with a person than to simply communicate with them over a computer. VERY different. And, to be perfectly honest, I don't see any perspective long-term relationships out of my computer friends anyway. They are just friends who I met on actually a music forum, and got to know because we enjoyed talking together. I never went looking for future perspective relationships. We simply became close because we enjoyed each other's company. Then it simply progressed to actually caring about each other, trusting each other, helping each other through emotional turmoil (caused by problems in our marriages in many cases), and just being totally open and honest with each other. I never expected it to be anything more than a close friendship.

To be totally honest, the prospect of any kind of romantic relationship over a computer would be simply TORTURE to me. I know people do it, but I need to be with someone physically or it's just going to be total frustration. I would get depressed if I always had to sit in front of a computer to talk to my loved one. And, the whole thing that's missing in my current marriage is satifying physical intimacy. A computer certainly won't solve THAT problem. 😉

"Did you notice that you tend to get close to married women? Thats bc they are unavailable 'technically' and are less intimidating to you. If they say they can't be with you, you then tell yourself its bc they are married, not bc there is something wrong with you."

Well, actually, only one of them was married when I met her, and another one got married just recently. Since I wasn't actually looking for an "involement" of any kind, I really didn't even consider their marital status at the time we first became friends. And, quite the opposite of what you said, if a woman says she can't be with me, I am completely certain it's because there is something wrong with me, regardless of her marital status. I don't have any fallacies in that regard.

Basically, the only thing my famale friends have taught me is that I can actually communicate with a human being, and a member of the opposite sex at a FAR deeper level than I ever thought possible -- regardless of the communications medium. That's something I didn't experience in the 15 years of marriage before I had those friends, nor in my entire life prior to that.

My friends also taught me one other valueable bit of information: That some woman actually do have more than a passing interest in sex -- not with me, but in general. I thought I was obsessed with sex all my life, and that somehow I was some disgusting pervert for even thinking about it that much. Now I find out, I'm NOT a disgusting pervert, because there are women just like me, and LOTS of them!

It's just been a very eye opening experience to a person who's only ever had a relationship with one woman in his entire life, and a very, very disappointing one. And I'm not blaming her either.

Now I just have to figure out what to do with all this new knowledge. That's the HARD part. And that's why I'm seeing a therapist. I don't have the right answer.

September 14, 2005
1:15 am
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luckyguy
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Neshema

"that is, you married her for the wrong reasons, so u now have the right to abandon her?"

That is the question I struggle with very much lately. That is why I have stayed with her for 17 years. I have given up my life to her because of my mistake. But I feel like I would be a horrible monster to abandon her.

I have become very depressed and have lost 3 jobs in the last 2 years. I can't concentrate on the one I currently have, which is a very good professional job at a good stable company, so it will probably be next. I feel like my life has become totally meaningless in this prison I have created for myself.

I have even thought about ending it all. We have plenty of insurance. She'd be much better off without me, actually. Why should I stay around? I will never have the only thing I always truly wanted in this life, which is a fulfulling intimate relationship with a woman who I truly cherish and care about. Just typing this right now makes me think about putting a bullet in my brain, but fortunately we don't have a gun.

September 14, 2005
1:23 am
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Neshema
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I ask you one more time what is it that you have to offer this woman and what does she have to offer you? how do you know it magically would be different with someone else, and that all that is lacking in your life would be resolved? I hear so many negatives. WHy not try viewing her as a beautiful gift, a beautiful person inside and out? You seem to think every other person has to offer you this...maybe it starts in your own backyard.

September 14, 2005
1:57 am
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luckyguy
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Neshema

I don't have answers to all your questions. If I did, I wouldn't need to be seeing a therapist. You hear so many negatives because this is the way I honestly feel at this point in my marriage. Very, very frustrated and hopeless. And yet, still, your questions and points are all good valid ones, and questions I actually do ask myself over and over. If there was a way I could simply "view her as a beautiful gift, a beautiful person inside and out", I would do it. It's far preferable to the alternatives. But, unfortunately, I haven't been able to achieve that. Maybe the therapist can help me.

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