General chatter - Not attracted to DH since losing weight...
09-05-2010, 08:19 PM
I can't believe I'm posting this, but I need some help and I'm so ashamed of my situation that it is causing me some serious distress. My DH is an amazing husband and father. Unfortunately, since losing the weight and embracing my new active lifestyle I have become less and less attracted to him physically. He's still attracted to me (I assume) because he's ALWAYS initiating sex, I oblige because I don't want him looking elsewhere, but it feels like a chore and I'm not sexually turned on by him. Part of it is that he's overweight (which makes me feel terrible since be stuck it out with me when I was 120 lbs overweight for many years), but honestly that really doesn't bother me, I think it's more that we've just been together so long that I've started to feel more like he's just my best friend than my lover. We've been together 13 years since I was 18 and he's the only man I've had sex with. I've been feeling this was for awhile, 18 months or so. At first it wasn't a big deal because I know that passion and sexual attraction will wane overtime in any relationship and when the problem first occurred I was post pregnancy and had no sex drive to speak of. Well now my sex drive has finally recovered and I'm not overweight anymore and getting attention from other men. This is where I'm starting to have issues. I know I won't cheat, but I really like the attention from other men and I find myself thinking about some of them frequently. I know that it's pretty unlikely to go through life never being attracted to another soul, and I wouldn't worry about if I was still attracted to my DH. I've been attracted to other guys before but it's never matter because I was still attracted to my DH.
So I know that I can't change his appearance (trust me I've tried to get him to eat healthier) and I don't mind that I LOVE exercise and be doesn't (that my me time now), but I do mind that I have to force myself to want to have sex with him. I was wondering if anyone has some advice for me. For the sake of my loyalty to DH, our amazing DS and my mental health I want to solve this problem. The guilt that plagues me from thinking about this other guy is really weighing on me and I'm afraid that it could result in regaining weight because it's causing some depression and binging. Luckily I'm training and the extra exercise is offsetting any gain, but if I don't get a handle on it I fear that the end result will be life changing.
I know the first suggestion would be to talk to him, but I really want to spare his ego. He recently told me he's pretty insecure about himself physically and I really think this is a me thing and there's not much he can do to change things. So I want to try and deal with my issues on my own first and if that doesn't work I can explore other avenues if necessary. Help?
UPDATE: I had a discussion with DH today about what is going on with me. I didn't go into all the specifics to spare his feelings and I sugar coated things a bit, but what was said was enough to make him understand what I'm feeling. It was a good talk and I think a step in the right direction. Only time will tell what steps are next. I'm hoping that a little more time on my part will help me to get reacquainted with my body and maybe open up sexually.
09-05-2010, 08:24 PM
Counseling, counseling, counseling.
09-05-2010, 08:35 PM
I wholeheartedly agree with Nelie. Find a counselor.
If you are a member of a church, set up an appointment with the pastor. If you are not a member of a church, get a recommendation from your PCP.
I don't think your situation is all that uncommon, but you do need some help as soon as possible.
09-05-2010, 08:48 PM
Oh yea, you need to talk with someone quick...and AVOID the guy you are "attracted" to...like the plague. (And if he's any kind of "REAL" man, he would never be with you anyway...Good guys don't hit on married woman...NO WAY.) I've seen this happen many, MANY times and unfortunately it has all but once ended in the BIG "D".
09-05-2010, 08:52 PM
Yes, counseling. I agree. Because here is the truth: The grass may seem greener on the other side, but it really isn't. You're going through a tough time right now, no doubt about it. But the history that you guys have together....that is not easily re-built with someone new. Trust me on this one. I have been divorced for many years and have had a few little mini-relationships since then, but I really doubt that there is anyone who will know me like my ex did, because we were the same as you and your hubby--we got together in our late teens and were together nearly two decades.
Hang in there, and please do consider counseling. This is a bump in the road that you can get over, most times.
09-05-2010, 09:46 PM
I am not going to discourage counseling, and certainly you should take this seriously, but on some level, have faith. You love this man for a reason, you fell in love with him for a reason--relationships go through their phases, and out of the 50 years you hope to spend with this man, 18 months of less attraction is just a blip.
It's not uncommon for couples to sorta "desex" each other after childbirth: for one thing, you're just really freaking busy right now and don't have time to spend together and even sex takes time and effort. You've quit talking about ideas and philosophy and started talking about poop. He's a DAD now, and that's less sexy.
Also, weight loss does affect hormones. My libido has gone down probably 75% since I lost weight: I still like it when I get in to it, but I never come off the couch going "must have sex now!" and I used to.
The reason hypothetical guys are easy to be attracted to is that you can have a fantasy while standing in line at the checkout. You don't have to actually shave your legs. It's mindless and simple.
So have faith. That doesn't mean ignore it--see a counselor, try to find more time together, make time to watch TV or go on walks or, ****, go to the grocery store together--care for your relationship like it's a member of your family who is feeling ill and needs tending. But underneath all that, try to maintain faith that the essential you and the essential he are the same, and that over time you'll find that attraction again.
09-05-2010, 09:58 PM
Attraction isn't just physical. Focus on the things you like about him. Being a good father, for example, is really sexy as far as I'm concerned.
In some ways, it's not so different from convincing yourself you prefer broccoli over ice cream - yes, there's the initial strong attraction to Ben & his buddy Jerry but once you actually think about it you realize that's just a superficial thing based on first impressions and instant gratification while the goodness broccoli brings you will last a lifetime.
09-05-2010, 10:08 PM
Thanks everyone, I'm feeling better already. There have been other occasions in the past when this has happened to me, but they were short lived and usually weight related. I didn't like having sex because I was heavy. I guess it concerns me this time because it's been longer, but as pp mention a lot has changed in our lives. I'm also struggling a little bit because I have some loose skin and my breasts are a little saggy and I don't always feel sexy, so I wonder if some of those insecurities are playing a part in it. I also don't think counseling is a bad suggestion, but I feel like there is some work I can do before taking that avenue. Another issue I think I have is that my sex drive is at it's peak in the middle of the day, pretty inconvenient. At night when DS is sleeping and there an opportunity I'm exhausted and ready for bed...I think I may just need to suck it up and make the time and give some effort. I don't know why I forget that relationships take work sometimes. I really do believe this is temporary, and will pass and there actually has been some minor improvement since the pregnancy, so there probably is some hormonal stuff going on. I think a little effort and more time could be the key.
09-05-2010, 11:07 PM
Well the reason I'd suggest counseling is counselors deal with these types of issues on a regular basis and can have proven strategies that can help you in your marriage and bring perspective in your life. Although you can ask advice a million ways on the internet, there is no substitute for an experienced counselor.
09-05-2010, 11:31 PM
Pray pray pray and pray some more!! Be specific in your prayer, ask God to restore your attraction and desire for your husband and to remove this other man from your mind! The heart is very deceitful. Seek out counseling as well and you probably should bite the bullet and bring your husband along. If he realizes how serious it is, he may reconsider his health to resecure the marriage.
09-06-2010, 12:14 AM
I would also suggest counseling. You have been through many changes and it takes time to readjust. I understand what you're saying about saggy skin and breasts-- I've got those too. Dh found me sexy heavy and he still finds me sexy now but sometimes it's hard for me to remember that.
I'd also recommend Dr. Laura's book "The proper care and feeding of husbands", and/or "The proper care and feeding of marriage". Your marriage is important and takes work. And do stay away from anyone giving you attention-- they should know better! TROUBLE!!
09-06-2010, 12:50 AM
In addition to all the above advice (which is great)!
I know this sounds dumb, but plan a sex night or sex day. Do something completely out of your zone and send text hints thoughout the day. Go to the sex shop... buy fun stuff, rent porn. Drink wine. pretend you're a crazy 21 year old. Since it is planned you'll know it's gonna happen and the anticpation and excitement plus "mystery" will be awesome.
Edited to add: Yes, my bf and I now Plan sex, due to hectic schedules... and it's probably the hotest sex I've ever had. sorry for the tmi...
09-06-2010, 09:07 AM
Seek out counseling as well and you probably should bite the bullet and bring your husband along. If he realizes how serious it is, he may reconsider his health to resecure the marriage.
I actually wouldn't recommend bringing him along, at first. A good counselor would work with you first and then let you know when/if you'd need to bring him along. A good counselor would also give ideas how to talk to your husband.
09-06-2010, 10:35 AM
We like tides ebb and flow in our life do not move too quick on things and like every one else suggest go see a therapist BY YOURSELF! I have been with my DH for 34 years this THUR and it is SO worth moving slow:hug:
09-06-2010, 01:06 PM
I imagine it must be a huge adjustment getting used to the new you at 120lbs lighter. Life feels different, you feel different, sex feels different. give yourself time, and yeah, I think nelie is right, a good counselor could help you sort through things. Good luck, hon.