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  1. How to get back on track?

    lulu' [sign in to see picture]
    • Rank: Lieutenant Colonel
    • Posts: 98
    • Joined: 14 Sep 2012

    I really need some help/advice and really dont know where to turn.

    Things are very strained with OH - he has major hassle and stress at work. I have major hassle and stress at home (doctorate, kids, home, OHs general grumpiness).

    We have gotten into a routine whereby he watches tv (snores on sofa) while I'm studying at night.

    It embarrasses me no end to say we havent had sex or any other type of intimacy since Sept 2016. We have been through a lot as a couple and have always managed to make it through. I had post traumatic stress after our ds was born after an emergency c section and I literally couldnt have sex as I had almost died and was (am) shit scared of another pregnancy. I have had serious confidence issues (v overweight after 3 pregnancies in 3 years - i get pregnant too easily)and am now in an alright place with that.

    Anyway we I'm sure are in a terrible downward spiral - he's in a grump as he misses sex (fair enough) and the last thing i feel like doing is having sex when he comes home and moans about everything....i feel unappreciated (i live 2000 miles from my family) and alone and totally fed up. So fed up that i dont know what to do or how to fix thibgs or even if its worth trying.

    Has anyone else been here and managed to get things back on track?

    I really dislike what we have become. We are like two totally separate individuals under the same roof. Its no good for any of us and i also worry about the effect it is having on the children.

    Any advice, words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated. I just wonder if it is possible to save as i really dont know if there is much left to salvage 😢

    RosyCheek [sign in to see picture]
    • Rank: Field Marshall
    • Posts: 2777
    • Joined: 11 Apr 2016

    Aw sweetheart, I really feel for you. This is no way for anyone to live. You're not happy and he doesn't seem happy either. Sometimes life gets in the way of relationships.

    Me and my husband have attended marriage counselling for almost 2 years. I can highly recommend it. We have been brought closer together with it. Even though he still works and lives away, I still feel a bit underappreciated, it's getting better.

    Good luck.

    lulu' [sign in to see picture]
    • Rank: Lieutenant Colonel
    • Posts: 98
    • Joined: 14 Sep 2012

    Thanks for your reply. You're right neither of us are happy, i fact I'm downright miserable and currently have no clue what I'm still doing there. Articles ive read on The Guardian about loveless and sexless marriages describe ours to a t.
    Things are v complicated as Im from uk and live in Italy which is where hubby is from.

    I've spoken and spojen to him but get nowhere. I dont think he has truly understood how grim things are.

    You're so right about life getting in the way...but in some ways it feels like its passing us by. I see other families out and about - they look happy, you can genuinely see the affection between the couple and im both sad and envious that we dont have that kind of bond

    RosyCheek [sign in to see picture]
    • Rank: Field Marshall
    • Posts: 2777
    • Joined: 11 Apr 2016

    Wow, that really is a distance away from home! Do you enjoy living in Italy or do you feel isolated? Feeling like you don't belong somewhere can really have an effect on your relationship. Would a move back to the UK ever be on the cards?

    I wouldn't focus too much on the other happy families. Truth is they quite possibly aren't all happy. They look so happy as you feel so unhappy.

    Lu SB [sign in to see picture]
    • Rank: General
    • Posts: 1020
    • Joined: 4 Mar 2017

    Hi Lulu. Yours is such a difficult situation isn't it? I speak from my own experience because I can understand as me and my hubby are from different countries and we live in England, but at the beginning when we got married, 16 years ago, we used to live on his home-country and I felt really odd, despite people and his family being nice to me. Over here, I feel odd sometimes but I do feel like kind of my second home.

    In my opinion sex is very important in a relationship, we can't denial it is not only for the physical aspect but mainly for the intimacy and feeling of really being together between a couple. Without it things turn weird. But reading your post it feels like ok you guys haven't had sex for a while, but it seems there are more issues that are getting in the way: you're always busy and with loads to do, your OH always grumpy and tired and don't making an effort to appreciate you, kids to care for, the stress of daily life basically.

    For my own experience again, I haven't had sex with my hubby for ages (longer than you) and we feel that's not right. Slowly, we started to communicate and he's aware that I've sex toys and indulge in solo play and he's ok with that. The main fact for us to stop having sex is that I felt he didn't appreciate me as I was the one always dressing up, putting lights, candles, lovely music on and he enjoyed, but kind of went through the motions and foreplay for me is essential, even more so than sex. So I thought: "ok no foreplay, no giving me something back and time, sex is out the cards". But because now we're communicating, we feel like slowly a door is opening for us, we are getting closer and it's nice being together again, he's showing an interest in my sex toys and what I do with that, we are nearly there, but it's taking time, years to be honest. Without talking, patience and work this wouldn't have happened.

    All families have problems and that saying "the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence" is true, you don't really know if those families are that happy, but because you feel so upset right now it looks like they are. When we are out as family, I'm sure everyone thinks that we are very happy because we laugh a lot, my hubby for all his wrongs, got a wicked sense of humour and I love that. But hey-ho our life is a nightmare as bringing up teens is a challenge, it drive us insane I tell you.

    Like RoseCheek suggested, counselling might be very good for you and your OH as you need feel like he listens to you and care enough to at least try do something. I know you're busy Lulu but perhaps you should find something that gives you as a person (not a mum, a wife or a professional) some kind of pleasure, like yoga, massage, gym, medidation, masturbation etc. It's essential you look after yourself as well because, again my own experience, no OH, no kids, no-one can do that, just you. Find something you like and stick to it because that's part of looking after your own health and well-being and that would give you energy and inner strenght to deal with the challenges of your relationship and life right now. However busy your life is, you need to find time for yourself.

    Children pick on our feelings all the time, specially on the "bad" vibes and you're right it's not good for them, but it's not good for you pretend everything is ok for their benefit. Tell your OH how you feel and the reasons you don't feel like having sex right now. Perhaps he too has reasons to feel fed-up, grumpy and tired all the time. If you guys don't try to open the lines of communication, you'll end up resenting each other and things getting even worse. And only you can honestly say whether it's worth or not. You know sometimes despite everything, it's not mean to be.

    I hope you can work thing outs Lulu and I honestly wish you good luck. Keep us posted.

    Gem276 [sign in to see picture]
    • Rank: Brigadier
    • Posts: 595
    • Joined: 11 Dec 2014

    I'm really sorry to hear about your situation.

    I separated from my ex husband 3 years ago this month and whilst it was the best decision for us, I know that I can look my children in the eye and say that I tried everything in my power to keep our marriage alive but I made the toughest decision and the consequences are hard for all of us at times.

    I can recommend watching Andy Stanley's series, "Staying in Love" ... My husband wouldn't watch it with me but it really helped me and if the two of you would watch it, it would be really powerful.

    I agree with the advice above as well that you need to find something that gives you some joy and me time. I found running, it's helped my mental health and gave me a much better body too, it let me feel free when I seemed to have very little control while my world seemed to be crumbling.

    Speak to your good friends or family about where you're at in your marriage as they will know your husband and being able to offer specific advice as to how to approach him. See if you can organise a regular date night with your husband, go out or stay in, talk to him, do something fun, go out for dinner, dress up smart for each other, hold hands, kiss, get a massage together, being married and keeping it alive is hard, especially when you have small children but your marriage is the best gift you can give your children.

    lulu' [sign in to see picture]
    • Rank: Lieutenant Colonel
    • Posts: 98
    • Joined: 14 Sep 2012

    Thanks for the replies and suggestions - they're truly appreciated.
    I think you're all right that I need to manage to get some regular me time when I don't have to be anything for anyone. Culturally it's difficult as southern Italy the concept of me time isnt really common at all. Just think that the fact that I go away for work overnight brings the frown of doom onto my mother in law's face. I dont fit in well with their perceived gender roles and how they expect things to be.
    I had a quick look at Andy Stanley's series, "Staying in Love" thanks for that. And it does make a lot of sense - I'll see if i can get to watch it with oh.
    A move back to the UK would be my ultimate dream - Im from Scotland and miss home dreadfully, but oh isnt keen. He's just too comfy where he is.
    Just so as ypu understand even more of the situation - we never have date nights, we have noone to babysit the kids. Mind you our previous babysitter is back temporarily so maybe we should ask her to babysit.
    The whole thing is so sad because we used to have a great relationship in all ways including sex - we managed to stay together long distance for 3 years and had a very satisfying sex life both during and after the distance phase. Its kids and the trials and tribulations of life that have made things deadly dull.
    Anyway, i really appreciate your help and will keep you updated how things progress (if they do)
    And i am always up for hearing any advice and suggestions you may have.

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