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My husband displays no affection towards me whatsoever and I'm almost ready to leave! Help!

Tagged as: Marriage problems, Sex<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (19 April 2007) 40 Answers - (Newest, 12 May 2013)
A female United Kingdom age 30-35, *elp_me! writes:

i get no affection from my husband, should I stay or go?

I have been married for nearly 3 years now and imtiamy has always been an issue for us. My husband will not touch me, hug me or kiss me, occasionally he allows me to hug him but wont hug me back and has not given me a proper kiss since we got married. If I touch him, he often tells me to get off.

We have sex once every 1-2 months, never more than once a month, I bring up the issue with him, he will not talk about it and even says he likes having sex with me! I have asked him to come to counselling but he won't do that either.

The sex is frustrating but the lack of affection more so, I feel now like I should leave but don't want to let go. I have really tried everything and am often left feeling rejected and worthless. Should I stay or should I go? I am really miserable but would feel selfish for leaving.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (12 May 2013):

I can relate to all you sweet frustrated women out there stuck with sorry men. In my case it started out good, until I found out what an alcoholic he is. And he hasn't touched me in 8 years!Even a dog gets a bone occasionally, but not my husband. I almost have to put bird seed on my upper lip to even get a peck goodnight, that is when he decides to come to bed, ugh, I'm just frustrated. Good luck.

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (27 January 2013):

I am male, 45 this year. In the last 10 years of my marraige I would be surprised if I have had sex more than 3 times a year with my wife( I don't screw around either).All initiated by me. I come from a warm an affectionate family. I love to touch hold and look into her eyes. She takes it, but never ever returns the affection. She hasen't worked for the the 12 years, loves reading garbage shopping on-line, hates driving the kids to school, hates that our youngest daughter was born 6th January - too close to Christmas, doesn't clean the house until I complain and resents me for it, has a dish washer, her car (old but reliable) is all covered, says "you should have..." to any of us (me & 2 Beautiful Girls)evrey day. All I can say is Get It Right! I didn't 2nd time around. When you have kids, its too late. The kids come first. I am not a machine! I love intimacy too.

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A female reader, moooon United States +, writes (20 January 2013):

Hi dear, I would suggest you to leave him because it is 3 yrs u saw more without affection. hmmm it will be late if u wait more. So better leave him and marry some one who loves you and desperate about you. this is my experience.tc.

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A female reader, wanting attention United States +, writes (15 April 2012):

My husband don't give a crap about me. When we were dating fifthteen years ago he used to be so romantic, loving, imagintive and caring. The only thing he does for me is a bad massage when he wants sex and works. He has emotinally cheated on me before. It hurts me so much, i have tried everything to save this marriage, but he will not do nothing. He says he "loves me " but he never shows it. Most men would get jealous if anouther man would flirt or touch his wife. NoOO ! Not my husband he likes it. I give up ! I have been a housewife for fourteen years. I have tried to get a job nobody will hire me because I havent worked. I am planning going back to school here this Summer or fall.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (31 January 2012):

I've been married 29 yrs, my husband has been cheating for at least 28+ yrs. He became impotent a couple of years ago and is totally unaffectionate. He constantly pushes me away ..but will hug another women in a heart beat. I have done all I can, and don't want a relationship without affection. All I want is a hug and kiss from time to time. He does not see a problem in the marriage.

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A female reader, QTpie United States +, writes (10 January 2011):

I, too, was in a very simular situation. Thankfully, I chose to end the "relationship" before it ever got to marriage. I honestly thought I was the only woman that felt like affection in a relationship is vital! I felt "petty" for ending the relationship BECAUSE of the lack of affection, but as I read more, I realize that it's VERY important in a relationship. I met him via the internet on a dating site. Our conversations on the phone were great! (He lived in another state). We communicated through email and phone for about a year before we decided to meet in person. The first time seeing/meeting him was great! The butterflies were present, in full effect! The sex was good too. We saw eachother about every 2 months after our inital meeting. It wasnt until about the 3rd meeting where I started to notice that he wasn't affectionate. No holding hands in public, no kissing, no hugging, zero compliments, and quick and boring sex. As I thought back, I realized he was only that way the first time we met. After that, it stopped. The conversations on the phone and email continued as normal. And he seemed very excited to come see me and for me to come see him. But when we were in eachother's presence, he was like a totally different person. It was down right strange.

I had several conversations with him about it and asked him if he just didn't find me attractive. He said he did find me attractive and wanted to continue in our relationship. Like I said, he would compliment me over the phone and via text/email, but never in person. He would tell me all the romantic things he wanted to do to and for me, but in person, he would barely touch me. It got to the point where I started to question myself. I started to become insecure. Sad to say, but it's true. My self-esteem (which I NEVER had a problem with) started to tank.

I ended the relationship. Finally. It was ugly as I had almost 2 years of pent up frustration, which all came out in one night. It happened to be New Years Eve. I had gone to visit him and was at my breaking point. Everything I ever wanted to say to him came out at THAT moment and it was harsh. I left feeling sad, but relieved that it had eneded.

I was selling myself short. Bottom line. And he was/is a great guy, just not the guy for me. So I say to all who may be going through the same thing, if you can, END IT. You're worth more.

It's time to stop reaching for people who are not reaching back.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (28 December 2010):

Hey, I am in a similar situation. Married 4 years, together 6 years, last 4 years no hugs or kisses or any kind of affection. We are 60 and an attractive couple. I feel lonley and feel the human touch is vital to your health. I tried marriage counseling-he dropped out because there was no definite solution in 2 sessions. He talks to me like a child and honestly, sometimes I have to laugh at how stupid he sounds. He hates that he lost a good job and settled for a minimum wage job, part time. I know he is depressed but that just happened a year ago so thats not it. I have tried to talk to him about communication. If he talks to me its always like a contest where no I am not completely right or bla, bla, bla..I told him the last time that I felt lonley and sad and very stressed, he said I don't want to leave I love you and I'll work on it. Well he worked on it for 1 day. He even had a list I had given him on my needs. I said did you read that and he said "yeah". Ok, by the way I am still in counseling by myself and am making strides. I am waiting until after taxes to decide to continue working on this or move on. So, my advise to you is if you are still under 55, leave him! Let him get another mommy.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (18 November 2010):

I have been with my husband for 8 years but we only got married last yr, we hve 2 beautiful boys aged 7 and nearly 2. When we first were together, he would hold hands, we would hold hands and walk in the city together and he would kiss me regularly, but that quickly stopped after i had our first son. It has now come to a point where i am sleeping with my 2 kids and he sleeps in the other bedroom. Its not even about the sex, i can honestly do without that, but i crave some sort of attention, a kiss, just some form of human contact with him. When we did share a bed, he would often tell me to stop touching, even if my foot accidently touched him. Its heartbreaking. I left my family, friends and life to come live with him here in Ireland. we both hve no family here but he prefers to be with his friends. He has long conversations with them on the phone and its come to a point where i am even jealous of his friends, because they seem to be getting the best of him. They get his time, attention, laughter....all i get is him telling me wht i have not done in the house. He constantly puts me down, telling me i am a bad mother. Always complaining about the house, and the house is in no where dirty, jus the normal untidiness with 2 kids in the house, but he wants the house to look like a showroom. That is all he can talk to me about. I am not working due to the recession and no jobs being available, but he is wrking and earning good money, but i see almost nothing of it. He gives me a small amount each wk and expects me to do wonders with it.

I really do not know what to do.I am heartbroken, lonely and sad. I have given this man my all and its not enough for him. Even if i have something in my hair, he won't even brush that off...thats how much he seems to hate physical contact with me. I feel ugly and worthless but do not know how to shake it. He keeps saying to me that its not up to him to make me happy, that i should be happy for myself. But what he does does not make me happy. How can anyone be happy, being put dwn all the time. I have gone from a fun loving, person who use to laugh all the time, to someone who is sad and lonely.

I cry at night, just craving to be held, to be loved and cherished.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (12 November 2010):

Well I'm only 23 been married for 3 years and my husband a bit older. He as lame as it gets ! In my last relationship I was madly in love with this guy,he became the father of my child..was together for 5 yrs then I start to realize he a flirt and he got worse and worse until he started sleeping around so I left..but that's one guy who no what I want and no how to touch me etc match made in heaven he just didn't no how to be faithful..so this guy I'm with nw suck!! Like we tap kiss I can't hug him he tell me move! we don't sit together cuz that be a waste of time he don't say sweet things I don't get flowers and he play game all day like I'm not here..he do work n we have kids together but besides work he good for nothing! I day dream about my ex nowadays cause he was much much better then what I got now I ask him to change for so many years n he change for 1 day and when I mean change I mean he'll cook for try playing around we me to make me laugh but next day back to same mess.I no longer love him.. Only reason I stood is because I don't want to fail god I heard if you leave your husband with making it work ,then you'll fail god . I want man who love me who shows it and tell me ..some who can make me feel my time is worth every min..someone who can hold me when I'm happy and sad.something every woman crave. I'm hurtin everyday when I see my Sis with her husband and the hug and kiss and he say I love u to her..then I look at my husband and he have no emotion smh ..I can do better and Ima get it sooner or later! I'm not ugly I'm just right but for some reason he just can't seem to love me right..

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (8 November 2010):

Leave him. If he has no intention of recognizing the issues you bring up, nothing will ever change. You have tried for 3 years, and I think that it commendable. Of you don't already, you will probably soon feel resentment toward him. You deserve to get the affection you crave, and I'm sure you can find a partner better matched to your desires.

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A female reader, lost life United States +, writes (1 November 2010):

hi

Most of here shares similar of my own story. i dated my husband about 4yrs then been married to him about more then a year now.. He is good who never abuse me verbally and phyisically also.. I have loved him so much enough to moved to his country here in states from over seas. Month before i moved to states i came to learn his secrests of contacting my female friends on social network all the time. Both of them hid it from me why i had no clue.. after that all the faith i had in him start loosing gradually.. but still i moved in with him to be married forever to became his wife and I wanted to go back to school and have career but he showed no interest in it.. We shared very different taste that was ok but what upsets me most as soon as i get close to him while he was still on browising on net.. suddenly either he switched to blank google search or or closes down everytime.. I started to feel weird and funny of his sudden reactiion towards the computer as soon as i show up next to him..I have no clue, why is he doing that again and again.. He kept me away from knowing his friends.. More then me he shows interest in my freinds then me every topic we talk.. infact many things i wanted to share with him as friend but he wouldn't listen and never there when i really wanted to talk to him.. like this life went on.. he wanted me to move to my cousin place who lives in different state in order to find a job and make living so that he could join me latter.. so i did.. now that i live far from him.. he seems doing very well but we hardly talks on the phone.. Everytime i say something to him.. he would say.. your wish... i see i have got nothing talk to him so as he.. he acts so cool and cold which make me hard to open up any topic. He doesn't shows me any feeling of missing me.. I am being so lonely and having no friends to talk to... it makes me really hard and sad.. I dont know, How long i would go on like this on this relationship.. Man i thought i know him turned out to be very different person now.. what should i do? I really dont know, sometimes i just wish if i could just die.. I tried all my best to reconstruct the trust in him but everytime it gets fail due to his coldness way of showing his personality.. Am afraid, if this isolation and discomfortness goes on between us then it would be end to our marriages..

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A reader, anonymous, writes (20 September 2010):

I am in my second marriage. Can't quite remember if I had this problem with my first husband but my current husband is totally not getting it. Tried something and it worked for a little while,stop giving him affection to show him just how it felt,a taste of his own medicine. It took about 2 days before he was saying,"I know what you want",and then came and kissed me or hugged me. But like I told him,if you know what I want,why is it so hard to give it to me. He then told me he would work on it. But guess what,just had to address the same subject again. So I wil do the same thing again and again and again until he realizes,this is not what I want,this is what I need. And I'm thinking about referring back to our marraige consuling books because its all in there about a mans needs and women needs,and if he still doeasnt get it after all this repeating over and over again,I know what I have to do,maybe he's not the one for me after all. Life is to short to have to teach a grown man,let alone your husband,how to love you the way you want to be loved. Its plenty of men out here that already know what to do and will because if he knows what you need and want and still won't deliever,you know what they say,you can lead a hourse to water but you can't make him drink.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (25 November 2009):

What are the ages in this relationship, I went throught this and I am will to talk about this .

Let me know the ages here and I will get back on here.

Does he seem happy with him self tho he doesn't have anything to do with you ?

Waiting to hear from you.

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A male reader, geewhiz33 United States +, writes (17 November 2009):

Im wondering if your husband is confused about his sexuality. Is he gay? He won't tell you, and sometimes they don't want to even admit it to themselves. Have you seen that Beth Cooper movie? 3 years is a small amount of time. If he won't go to counseling and isn't budging, then you need to see the light. I think life is too short to be miserable. And I thnk its abusive to me to put up with a person who is not giving you the time of day. If you don't have children, then what are you waiting for. Your wasting your life. If you have kids, then seek counseling for yourself. Good Luck, there is always HOPE.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (17 October 2008):

i married my husband almost 3 years ago. He is a good man who has lived a very rough life. He does not abuse me physically or mentally....we do not fight....we argue about little things, but mainly just hurt feelings coming to the surface. He has not touched me in 6 months and before that a year. We do not ever make love unless I initiate it...and even that is hard for me because I am bitter that I always have to be the one to do so....He is not a communicator because of the life he has lived....he is just more of an observer...There is a NOVEL involved with our lives...and none of it really makes sense...I always wondered why women stay with their husbands when they are so misrible...and now I think I understand...I LOVE HIM....and I know that he loves me...But maybe love is not enough...I sometimes feel like it will all get better...we have good days...when I feel like maybe it will get better...but I am so tired of doing all the work....

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A reader, anonymous, writes (7 October 2008):

I am sad to say I am headed in the same direction as the rest of the relationships I have been reading about.My boyfriend of two years .Is so cold to me we have sex maybe once every month and a half maybe and most of the time he doesnt even climax. I am a pretty woman but feel so ugly because of this. I have recently lost 21 pounds and he hasnt givemn me one compliment.I cannot remember the last time he gave me a compliment, every time I adress any displeasure with our situation or his lack of affection .He blows up and screams at me at the top of his lungs, Telling me I am crazy.He doesnt want to be near me.I have been in a verbally and physcially abused in the past by men. And his screaming really affects me I usualy just cry and say I am sorry its all my fault .Even when he has been a total ass.Just so he wont leave.I am pathetic I know.My history of abuse and abandonment isnt helping. But im getting to my limit. I have been drinking more and more to deal with the pain but it is just a mask.I need to get out.I need a man who will love me and make me feel like a woman. I am tired of selling myself out for someone. I now does not really care about me or my feelings. He is so selfish always playing video games and buying gadgits. He has called me so many nmes broken my things broken my heart and walked on my pride. I know what I need to do. he needs to get out of my house and stay gone.Because I would be happier alone than with a man who cannot even look me in the eye.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 September 2008):

I am in the same situation. my husband shows me no affection, love, hold me, hug, kiss or sex. It has been almost 2 years. I have tried everything from counseling to talking. He just seems "checked out." We have twin boys and he is fine when it comes to them but that is it. I think I have reached the point where enough is enough. I deserve love. You do too.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (7 September 2008):

my husband i are married for about 3 years.now we have a child of 8 months .and now we are living with our in laws.my mother in law is a very powerful in home and she wants everything to be as she wants.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (28 August 2008):

Hi this is probably the most stupid of all. I am 55 years old I was married to my first husband for 27 years. My second husband for 6 years. I recently got more stupid than I ever thought possible. I met a man on myspace. We talked for 5 hours everyday either on the computer or on the phone. We saw each other twice approximately 3 weeks later I let him move in with me. We are both disabled and he was living in a camping trailer temporarily. I was worried about him being in it through the winter. He moved in and within a week we went down and bought a 2007 truck. This man now has someone to cook his meals, do his laundry, clean for him, Iron his shirts, Turn his bed down at night, set up his coffee pot for morning and oh yeah he kind of likes to get right at it when it is time for sex. There is pretty much no affection. I have talked to him a few times and told him what I need from him. He says he is just not like that and that I just want to stay wrapped up in his arms all the time. That is not it at all. I get a kiss like a peck when he gets up and the same if he goes to lay down and then when we go to bed at night he gives me a quick hug and kiss then gets into bed and turns his back to me right away. I substituted having my back touching his for some kind of touch for a week or so. Like I told him when he said he liked our relationship like it is, I said why wouldn't you. You don't have to clean, cook, do laundry or anything else that you don't want to do. You have a better place to live, a vehicle to drive, someone who helps you with a grocery bill...but I got into this relationship for love and affection and I am not getting any. He is addicted to the computer games and tv and that is what he does all day. In one spot seldom moves for anything. He has been married 3 times and I am sure he has had a number of girlfriends that bailed out. I am horrified that I was stupid enough to get myself into this mess.

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (30 May 2008):

You have to ask why he does not do it. I stopped kissing my wife after I found out she had an affair. She lied to me, told others lies about me and tried to destroy my character by spreading nasty comments to her family members to justify the affair. It was a very difficult time when she was having the affair and I did not know about it. She was very aggressive and issued the worst offenses that a woman can tell her husband. Something inside me keeps me from kissing the lips that have done so much damage. We stayed together largely because of small children and they would have been affected. Even though she says she loves me, I no longer believe her. She gets upset that I do no longer kiss her but she would not understand why.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (22 May 2008):

I fully understand what you are going through. I just had my 16th wedding anniversary this month with my husband. We have been together for 22 years. After 6 years of dating I thought that I was marrying the greatest guy. Things were great until shortly after our son was born. About 3 1/2 years into our marriage he started to change. By the time we had our daughter in 2001 he wasn't the same person I married. He doesn't hug or kiss me. If I go to hug him he either just stands there with his hands down at his side or he pretty much says no. He never kisses me. If I tell him that I love him he just shakes his head. He never say's I love you back. Not even on our anniversary. I have recently changed my hairstyle and lost 28 pounds and he hasn't even said one word about me looking good. I am 5'11 and was not overly heavy to begin with. I often cry myself to sleep and feel very unloved and unnappreciated. He never wants to talk things over and when I try to he attacks me and say's you alway get this way when you are getting your time of the month. I just dread going home from work because I know that he is there. If it weren't for my kids I don't know what I would do. Well, I know what. I would have left a long time ago. That is what I suggest that you do before you have children and feel even more trapped. Living life under a black cloud of despair is not good for you mentally or physically. Believe me, I know. I am on Lexapro and have stomach problems from my stress at home. Get out while the getting is good. Find the kind of man that you deserve!!!!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (19 May 2008):

Leave him. He has lost interest and clearly does not care about your feelings. I know it is hard to hear but you are worth more than this relationship or broken relationship. What a jerk. You cannot change him but you can change you and you can absolutely control how you allow people to treat you. Plan a departure and then go out and do what you feel will improve you and the way you feel such as get into better shape, buy some new clothes, hair and make-over etc. And then let your freinds and family begin to love you and introduce you to others. Join social activities and enjoy your life. God says he wishes us to have abundant life and your are not having that in this relationshop. I know the above to be true because I lived through the same thing and it is hard but better for you in the long run. :)

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A female reader, oscarollie United Kingdom +, writes (7 May 2008):

Hi, You must go now, I speak from bitter experience I

was in a similar marriage for 23 years, it goes no better.

I have a daughter so I stayed, you rationalise to yourself they are good in other ways, I did, he cooked, he cleaned etc.

but stop making excuses, if someone really loved you would they make you feel so neglected ? especially over a basic human need.

I know the feelings of anger and sheer frustration, believe

me they go worse as you get older.

This will kill the inner you, its just as bad as any other abuse. Please get out, good luck.

anne England

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (18 April 2008):

Go. End it now. If intimacy has always been an issue it probably will continue to be. I've had this same problem with my wife for over 13 years now. She always had excuses but I now realize that the bottom line is that the desire just isn't there and eventually, they stop faking it. I crave the same attention you do but with kids, I've got to stick around. You, on the other hand should find what you need, otherwise things will only get worse. Good luck.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (5 April 2008):

I Have Almost The Same isse With My Husband To Be i Have Been With Him2 Years And When We Met He Would Tell Me I Can Have Sex 5 times A Day And He Used To Kiss And Told An Touch Me Here After 2years I Havent Had Sex But 8 times In That Time And When I Go On The Big Truck With Him He Wont Touch Me Either, When We Bought A New Bed In Oct 07 That Was The Last Time i Had Any Intercourse With Him And I Love Him Very Much But Im Very Lonely For His Affection. Then I Told Him Maybe You Should Have A Sex Change And No Response Then We Go Shopping And He Told Me About This Driver Showing Some Computer Things To Him And Then That Driver Asked My Man What Is Your Martial Status Mine Said Married The Other Said Im Gay. So What Am I To Think Then Mine After A Aweek Gone Sleeps With A Pillow Between Us. HELP!!!!!!!!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (5 April 2008):

im having the same issue with my husband to be that told me 2 years ago i can have sex 5 times a day i havent had it but 8 times in 2 years ,then we bought a new bed and he wont make love or kiss me or touch me then he puts a pillow between us HELP !!!! i have never felt so rejected by a man and i consider myself attractive an lonely! Then I Went To Hug Him An I Said Maybe You Should Have A Sex Change About A Hour Latter He Told Me About A Another Truck Driver And That Guy Asked My Man His Martial Status ,Mine Told Me Im Married An Mine Asked Him The Other Said Im Gay!!! Have I Lost My Husband To Another Man Or Is It That He Doesnt Care Or What.?????

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (14 February 2008):

"My wife displays no affection towards me whatsoever and I'm ready to leave! Help!"

When we first met it was like magic. I lived in a big city in an upscale neighborhood and had a thriving business. I was 37 never married and no kids. She lived in the same city but we had never met one another. She was married with 8 kids to the same man. We crossed each others paths several times in different states in the US but never met. We found out later that we went to some of the same concerts together, ate at the same restaurants and I even knocked on her door while campaigning for a friends senate position. I was to a point in my life where I was tired of looking for my soul mate and was ready to sell my business, my house and move to the country on a 44 acre ranch in a big house. My family thought I was nuts for wanting to do this because I was not married and didn’t have any kids. Something that I always wanted – A lot of kids and a beautiful wife. Not knowing but she moved 1500 miles away in 2000. She ended up divorcing her verbally abusive husband of 16 yrs in 2002. She was now having reoccurring vivid dreams about a man from Iowa ( she doesn’t know but I’m from Iowa ) whose face she couldn’t see in her dreams and was trying to plan a trip there to maybe meet him. Well her sister ended up passing away of cancer back in the city where I lived. She was given air reward tickets for her and her kids to travel back for her sister’s funeral. Went to the funeral and planned a night out with her old friends. We ended up at the same place and the rest was history. We have been told we are the Barbie and Ken couple and on a scale of 1-10 in looks we are both a 9.5 plus. Here comes the bombshell. She tells me that she was a prostitute to support her kids and stopped 2 weeks prior to us meeting. Her house is going into foreclosure and she is way behind in her bills. So I start sending money to save her house and catch her up on her bills. We move forward in our relationship and I make several trips to her home in the country. She is having problems with her two oldest boys ages 15 & 17. The day I’m buying her wedding ring I get a call from her 1500 miles away and she tells me her oldest son just beat her up and was taken away by the police. I sell my house and business and move in with her on her 44 acre ranch in the country. Here is where the problem starts. Her pimp (prominent local businessman) so to speak keeps calling her for the next hook-up. This goes on for the next nine months and each time he calls I let her know how unhappy I am about it and that if she doesn’t stop him from calling that I was going to leave. In the meantime I’m catering to her every need because I know she has had it very difficult in the past. I’m doing all the shopping and taking the kids to school and basically running the whole house. I write her love notes, bring her flowers and chocolates, give her massages, and when we make love she tells me she has never felt that way before. Soon I begin to notice she doesn’t and hasn’t done anything for me that would show she loves me. No attention, no initiation of love or affection. I have wanted to leave her several times because of this and have tried talking to her about it numerous times. She says that if one person (me) is initiating the love, affection and attention in the marriage that it is ok and that a lot of marriages are that way. We have been together for almost 4 yrs and married for almost three. I have a lot of anger and bitterness in me now because of this. I have become very unhappy over the past 2.5 years and have said things to her that I wished I could take back. She says I have hurt her deeply because of the mean things that I have said. I’m not making excuses for my behavior but I feel like a dog chained to a tree that doesn’t get any food or water. I actually told her that if I hadn’t said anything mean to her that we would still have one person in this marriage with a shriveled up heart starved for love. I have lost my desire to do anything for her.

HELP!!!!!!!

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A female reader, help_me! United Kingdom +, writes (11 February 2008):

help_me! is verified as being by the original poster of the question

Firstly I would like to thank everyone for all their help and support on the issue.

Secondly, I need to update you all on my situation.

I told my husband that I wanted to leave over 6 months ago now. I have since learned some horrible truths about him and some led me to go to the police and he now has a court case pending. Anyway, I found the strength to kick him out my house, file a divorce and now I am free of him after a long and stressful struggle. I won't lie, it was really hard and took alot of courage but I did it. I went for counselling with Relate...who were brilliant and got life back on track. I was very lucky to meet a new partner, who was very supportive of my situation and is such a great person. He is warm, affectionate and loving. We share similar interests and are heading in the same direction. I can talk to him about everything and he gives me confidence and strength.

I am so happy now and cannot believed I stayed with such a loser for so long. I feel better, stronger, more confident , happy and content than ever before.

I have to say, good luck to everyone in a similar situation. Relationships are hard and going through a divorce was the hardest thing I have ever done, but I got through it and it was worth the struggle!

Take care all

Lx

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 February 2008):

Mmmmm...I am completely unaffectionate toward my husband and I wish we could separate but we have kids. He completely turns me off in every way. He whines about everything, I find him often mean to our kids, he talks way too much about his ex, since I've had kids I do not have any time to work out at the gym anymore so expecially killing to my sex drive are the rude comments about my body but do you think he will clean up the kitchen after supper so I could have time to go to the gym - NO!. Everything about the infrequent sex we do have is a complete turn off and I can't wait till it's over so I can take a shower. Basically I hate him. That's why I do not even want to hug him anymore. He can't even see what his does makes him so unappealing.

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (31 December 2007):

i lost affection and love for my wife after several years..and she had always struggled giving me any before. when we finally were able to address it - issues from her past, it seems to be too late for me. we have 2 beautiful children (4) and (2) and been married 6 years, together 10.

i feel like the amount of time that the lackof affection, kissing, and passion in our relationship didnt exist - has now made it impossible to kindle that part. i give her such strong praise because like many times the root of her issues are from her childhood, alcoholic parent, etc...

i also feel like she is the stronger person - i couldnt take it any longer..i had escaped for years from the lack of affection (even with me always being the initiator - attempting to bring this side) - self service solo sex, websurfing, poker, etc...this just added resentment on her part. it took 6 years of being married to finally come to terms on my side that it wasnt just 'sex' - it was all the affection that came during the day (or lack of any), kissing and wanting to kiss your partner, 'atraction' - in several ways....it all goes together to create passion.

so i said she was stronger - because i am the one that jumped off the bridge - stumbled into an affair now, and after several cycles over 5-6 months of leaving, staying, etc feel like i am in love pergatory. See, not addressing it in the beginning - not going to counseling years ago and getting to the roots, has led me down a path through time, loneliness, etc that now i have fallen in love with a another woman. and to make things worse - she lives 3 hours away. i put all this detail in here because its so obvious afterwards that complacency in a relationship is the worst killer there is. and when you have kids, how much more painful it is. and when your spouse/sig other is a great person in so many ways, but you find yourself not in love with them, not wanting to be there it is very painful.

the other parallel here is that the woman i have had an affair with is married, has two little kids as well - 5 and 3. so - it becomes a warning that when you are not happy - when your partner continuously brings things up that you chose to not address that they will just go 'away' - you are headed down a path of complacency that will potentially lead one of you astray.

I know I am going on a tangent now a little - but even with counseling over the last 6 months sometimes its good to vent it all - and it seems that there are so many similar stories to mine.

I have tears welled in my eyes right now as i write this - thats how painful these types of things are. i wish i could have been a strong enough man to realize what it was i was escaping from over the years - and brought it up properly (instead of just saying not enough sex) so that we would have had a better chance. And also so maybe i wouldnt have veered off the path - and would have either been happy with the woman i was married to, or had already decided to go separate ways and not have the guilt of the affair.

and for some background - i had told my wife about the emotional side of the affair aftr only 2 weeks. couldnt divulge the completeness to her at that time. then 2 months in i told her everything. and its been a rollercoaster since. and to make it harder - because my wife is such a strong person - she has not made this a miserable time for me - she has done and continues to do what she can to help save us - without losing herself. oh how much easier this all would be if she was some psycho or difficult person - i wouldnt have so much guilt.

all this - not excused by it, but led by complacency on both sides of the marriage/relationship. all this - to the point divorce papers were served and mediation started 4-6 weeks ago, and then stalled - simmering now, led by complacency.

i guess, besides the rant - besides the selfishness of me wanting to vent this mess and give an example of where not to end up, besides the guilt of being the one who has had the affair (no matter how good it felt - no matter all the love that stumbled and blossomed from it which now seems like an impossibility to take further - thats a whole additional chapter) - THE ONE thing to take from this..is that its your COMPLETE RESPONSIBILITY - and i'll say it again - once you know there is something not right, or that is getting to you - it is your COMPLETE RESPONSIBILITY to address it and use every tool/resource possible to do it in the beginning - even if you think its small, even if you think it will change - because COMPLACENCY KILLS.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (13 December 2007):

while reading your post i felt as though i was reading my personal diary. i am in a similar situation. my hubby does not spontaneously kiss or hug me...ever! only in the bed IF its cold... its easy to tell some one in our situation to leave the relationship but going ahead and doing it is much harder. the lack of affection and attention is frustrating and it hurts so bad, considering we cook and clean for these men.even jus a hug would make u feel better right? i am only 20, iv been married for 3 years and i married this man after falling increadibly deeply in love with him. you, my friend, need to sit and think to yourself, is this man worth the pain you are going through? is he bringing you any joy whatsoever? does he even care or provide for you? would he even shed a tear if u died? no? if not you need to get out of this mess and leave. i thought my hubby was bad! but we still have sex at least once a week! even that is not enough! i dnt knw how u can go with jus once a month! oh another thing, your hubby sounds like a dumb *****! how can u guys have kids if your only having sex once a month? does he not know a womans egg is alive for only 12-24 hrs? you need to be having sex regularly, like every day, or every other day to give the egg a chance to fertilize while it is still alive....god, ur hubby has p***ed me off!!! jus pack up and go!!!

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A female reader, ilikenight United States +, writes (7 September 2007):

ilikenight agony auntMy sister was married to a guy like that. She would try & get affectionate with him & he would totally blow her off. Which made me wonder what the hell's she doing with him? She was 22 when they married, 25 when they divorced. She's pretty much any guy's dream as far as looks & personality goes. She's a dental hygenist now, makes good $ is married to someone else (although I don't think he's a much better choice) & has 2 kids. You need to leave him while you're young & don't have kids with him. Thank God she didn't have kids with him. I think he has a mental condition. He would also abuse her and he was into gross porographic things as well. Anyways, it was hard for her but she is way better off now, so just do it. Leave him.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (17 June 2007):

It is a Sunday morning and I am leaving my partner of 17 years. I left for two years before and me back - why, because I love him deeply. But today, I have finally realised that I am becoming mentally ill - I receive no affection and am 'brushed off' when I touch him.

I am a wreck and I know that this is definitely not healthy. Please do not be like me and keep trying - go and find love from someone who can show it and provide your needs - we all need to have affection. I hope things turn out o.k. for you.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (17 May 2007):

My husband has shown me no affection in any way in more than 4 years. There has no sex, kisses, cuddles or anything. Things started going wrong shortly before my daughter, now 3 was conceived. We have been for counselling over the last 10 months, to no avail and are still no closer to the route cause. I feel totally rejected and worthless which has in turn destroyed my self confidence. I am currently on anti-depressants which don't seem to help that much, as the problem is still there. I'm contemplating leaving my husband but feel I can't do it at the moment as his Dad recently died of cancer and he is going through an emotional termoil at the moment. If anyone has any advice I could really do with it. I feel for all those people out there suffering the same predicament. I am 38 and this is my second marriage, the first failed due to a very controlling husband. I have ended a marriage once and now I can do it again but it is much harder second time round and also with a child to think about things are more difficult. HELP!

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (30 April 2007):

Everyone deserves happiness, and you should seek a divorce. If your relationship does not increase your quality of life, it is not a good relationship for you. By the way, I am currently living with an OUTSTANDING woman who lived a situation similar to yours, including a divorce and "no sex" with her partner. I feel blessed to have met her, because she is everything I wanted in a woman: affectionate, intelligent, and beautiful. In fact, I was searching the web for ideas writing a card to her and randomly found this page.

"my dad has been diagnosed with cancer last week and I need some support in my life"

Search for Laetrile or Vitamin B-17. There is a great book, World Without Cancer and you can watch the video on YouTube.com.

Take care,

-- Daniel.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (22 April 2007):

don't feel selfish or bad for leaving that is what will make u happier.i recently got a divorce and its a scary thing but u are strong enough to get through it.it sounds as though he was just using u for money,cause he couldn't get off his lazy ass!and as far as the affection thing goes i totally relate that is a need when u are married and u love each other,and if someone truly loves u they should have no problem at all showing u that,especially when u really need it.it's not good to be starved for affection in a marriage and it wont make u feel satisfied or happy take it from me u'll be better off without him and theirs tons of great men who will give u everything u want and more.

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A female reader, help_me! United Kingdom +, writes (20 April 2007):

help_me! is verified as being by the original poster of the question

Thanks for all your help guys. Today I read this and looked at it from an outsiders view and realised what a fool I have been. I was blinded by love.

There is so much more to our problems. I have given him everything and more. In the beginning he said it was down to stress. He got a new job, I paid off nearly £30k of his debts by remortgaing my house which he moved into and bought him a car. I supported him for months while he was in and out of jobs, he then maxed out two further credit cards which I again paid off and its not like I have an endless supply off money either, its just I have made it more manageable and stupidly in my name.

I caught him watching someone wanking online who was quite young about 8 months ago and after that kicked him out. I then took him back as he promised me everything and I fell for it!

He wont even listen to me tell him about my day, the other day I was talking and he said "its quiet time now!!!". When I am down though, like now he will do little things to pick me up before knocking me back down again, like last night he told me he loved me, which a friend of mine says is a form of bullying.

He also told me he wanted children but would not try for them. There is so many things which are not right here. I think I was only looking for some reassurance. I know what I need to do.

I am only just 26 years old, I have a house in my name, a car, a great job which I love, family and friends around me so I guess I will be ok, just a little scared. I think I have come to realisation more now cos my dad has been diagnosed with cancer last week and I need some support in my life right now and not someone who makes me feel so worthless.

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A female reader, TasteofIndia United States + , writes (20 April 2007):

TasteofIndia agony auntHey sweetness,

This guy sounds like he'd rather be a hermit. Three years with little to no affection? You're stronger than I am, darling. I would've been out of there a long time ago, or at least given him a stroooonnnggg talking to.

Was he at ALL like this before the marriage, or were you two kissing and sexing it up? After you got married was this a gradual weening off of affection, or did he quit cold turkey?

Something isn't right here. Either you need to go to joint counseling or you need to give him a long, hard talk about the two of you and your relationship. Tell him that you can't go on living your life with someone who has become so cold. Marriage should be about warmth, togetherness, a shared appreciation of affection and most importantly communictaion. It seems like there might be something he's not communicating to you about.

At the very least, you need to start the conversation, because after three years it should be clear that he's not going to.

I wish you the best of luck, sweetness!!

xxIndia

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A reader, anonymous, writes (20 April 2007):

im sorry but if my husband treated me like that i would have left a longtime ago,you said he hasn`t kissed you properly in 3yrs and never huggs you,im shocked that you have put up with it for so long,is there someone else or has there been someone else?you say he refuses to listen to reason or go to counselling well there is only one other option and that is to tell him if things dont change your leaving him,he married you for love an affection,which he is failing you and dont seem to care about.

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A male reader, Royofthe Rovers United Kingdom +, writes (20 April 2007):

Royofthe Rovers agony auntIf he wont go to counselling and will not acknowledge there is a problem you have to reconsider things.

A marriage should be worked on and not just left to work itself out hoping things will be alright.

Tell him you need the counselling and without it, the lack of affection in the relationship will become an issue and is already growing in your mind a problem.

A husband should be understanding to his partners needs and desires whether or not he likes to admit it, there has to be some comprimise in this. Feeling worthless and rejected in a marriage is not healthy and will only lead to you resenting him for not giving you the attention you deserve.

he may have a problem which he feels uncomfortable discussing, but being with someone means you should be able to trust them with things close to the heart, no matter what they are. Try and find out if wants to tell you anything, give him the opportunity, without putting him on the spot and making him feel his is being interrogated.

You cant be expected to be happy with this style of living for your entire life with him and he has to see this as a problem otherwise he is ignoring you and the relationship that could be.

x

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