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Dear Chump Lady, Sex after divorce?

Hi Chump Lady,

I’m pushing almost three years out now from the bomb my ex dropped on our marriage and by all accounts I am the “King of Meh.” I’ve worked on all my baggage and done most everything about getting my life back on track before anything else. That said, getting back into the dating world after 27 years leaves me in a unknown wilderness with no compass.

I did date a lot in the 1980s before I was married, but the rules appear to be all over the place now. Sooner than later I’m going to end up in the sack with someone, but after only sleeping with one woman for 24 years I’m not sure how I’m going to react to that, as it’s the last thing for me to let go of from my marriage.

I’d be grateful if others could share their feelings on this, it seems like a topic not often shared.


Dear Mike,

Chumps are such feeling creatures. The fact that you’re thoughtful about getting laid after divorce just goes to show that you’re a quality person. I’m sure you’ll be snarfed up and in bed with someone shortly.

Please don’t over think it. (Resisting typing “it’s like riding a bicycle!” Oops… I just wrote that…) Your ex stole so much from you — don’t let her have mental real estate around your sexuality. She certainly felt no loyalty to you, so there’s no shrine here to maintain after 27 years of marriage. Enjoy the world of possibilities guilt free, Mike.

When you worked on that baggage did you address any mindfuckery around sex? Some of the most pernicious blameshifting cheaters do is directed at chumps’ sexuality. She’s sexless. I’m not attracted to him. He’s too vanilla. She got fat. Etc. It’s worse if you witnessed any of their salacious Penthouse letters. You know, those sexts and emails sent back and forth detailing their exploits. In their fantasy It Was The Best Sex Ever. (Blowjobs in a cramped subcompact during lunch hour? Really, how great was it?) But the true high was the deceit. That it was naughty and secret, and they might get caught! A healthy person can’t compete with that. Don’t measure your own sexual self worth against affair sex. That’s like 47-year-old squidgy me comparing myself to some sexy video game avatar. Oh God, I’ll never measure up, I don’t have tits like a druid. 

What your ex-wife had with OM(s) was a fantasy. Whatever she said to you, whatever she said about him — consider the source. Consider her character. Is this someone you respect? Does their opinion of your genitals really matter to you?

There are people who appreciate. You want to bed one of those people. Now you might ask yourself, how will I know until I’m naked with this person? Look for clues. Did they thank you for dinner? Do they do thoughtful things for you? Do they generally just think you’re terrific and enjoy your company? Well, they will enjoy it that much more without clothing.

As the expression goes — you know how to hammer a nail out of board of wood? Drive another one in. My guess is whatever anxiety you have about intimacy with someone else after 27 years will disappear with a new person (nail). A good person, who deserves all of you.



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  • 2 years out myself. Just stepped into the dating pool about 4 months ago. A couple of very ‘meh’ coffee dates with people I really did not click with. One very good date, last week. Very very good. I made a couple of discoveries

    1) Yes, there was a lot of mindfuckery in my marriage bed
    2) I have let go of a lot of baggage, yay me!
    3) With someone who is skilled, caring, and thoughtful, the experience was a toe curling wow!
    4) My agenda at this point is very different than it’s ever been. Not looking for just a hookup, and not looking to settle down and have kids. Just enjoying someone’s company, and it gives a certain freedom and relaxation to the process.
    5) Skill matters 😉 and skill has been lacking in previous relationships.
    6) I was with someone who said he appreciated everything about me, not just certain body parts. That was refreshing.

    I went into it with as much honesty and communication as I could, looked for red flags, and we took appropriate precautions. Is it going to be long-term? Maybe, maybe not, but I’m going to enjoy it while it lasts.

  • My NPDXH was my first and only sex partner until I was 43 years old. Our sex life was always quite bad, largely due to the mindfuckery that surrounded this and every other activity in our lives. Somehow, while I was able to tolerate the mindfuckery in other areas (I’m mad at you, River, because you ate the last banana. I’m mad at you because you did not eat the last banana, and you let it go brown. I’m mad at you because of how you parked in the driveway. I’m mad at you because you didn’t push in your chair…etc.), I was not so willing to tolerate this kind of shit in bed. XH is an alcoholic with ED. He could usually get started, but rarely actually finish, if you know what I mean. At that point, he would find some way to blame me for his inability. He would often say that sex was like masturbating, but just a lot more work. Such a charmer! Eventually I became very shut down sexually, and really dreaded the thought of it with him. The last four years of my marriage were sexless.

    Fast forward to my first post d-day relationship. Wow! I will spare you the details, but let’s just say that I had no idea it could be so fun and so easy. I am so glad that I did not miss out on this part of life! I believe that many of us chumps are in for a wonderful surprise when we begin sexual relationships that are free of blame and shame and twisted mind games, especially those of us who have only known NPD sex.

    • I can so relate to this, the blameshifting, in particular. I was told noone would ever want me again, I was so unattractive only *his kink* was a turn on etc… he is now dating around – he has at least 4 people on the go at the moment.

      My life is so amazing now, I took time to find myself and now I’ve got a boyfriend who likes me for me, and who I can hug or kiss whenever I want without expectation of anything more… which is new. I was a bit freaked out about being with someone else but he was the kind of guy who waited … and waited… until it was just something else we did during one of our days together and in his words, “waiting made it more special”.

      I’d never waste one minute in a relationship with someone with NPD again.

  • This topic sort of jumped out at me for only last night my STBX (still living together in this nightmare) while trying to seduce me once again, said that none of his multiple fuck buddies were as good in the sack as me! The audacity, huh?

    • What a classic mindfuck comment. I bet he tells his fuck buddies that you’re no good. Guess it’s just a case of using whatever line comes to mind to get what he wants.

      • My gut feeling is that it’s all about sex for him. That’s how classic Narcs exist in, they want the sex but are completely disinterested in the boring details of maintaining a relationship, screw trying to understand why I would NOT want to have sex with him AFTER he cheated on me. I mean, I honestly do not believe that he comprehends what it must be like to be repulsed by someone you use to love.
        Getting off topic here, but I too wonder HOW on earth will I enter the dating scene after so many years. I imagine it will be strange at first, just as it was the first time we had sex with our cheaters- good comparison? I tend to believe that if the chemistry is there, things will develop on their own timeline. Good points everyone on the “brush up” on the latest trends, especially for those of us over 30. The fashion is one thing but the dating rules have changed too, I’m told. Everyone seems to be online now. If they don’t have digital presence, I actually would worry they’re hiding something.

        • Heartbroken – I don’t have a digital presence (other than if you Google my name and the professional stuff comes up) but I’m not hiding anything. Just don’t have one.

            • it creeps me out too, I have had one date from online site and he had NO digital presence at all. I had to find real estate records to confirm he lived where he said he lived. I am not dating him, I may be paranoid but OTH, anyone who doesn’t have a single social media presence is freaky to me. I mean not even LinkedIn? As a IT security person there are very few people that don’t have anything online AT ALL unless they are actively making sure not to, or they are hopelessly tech clueless. I’m not interested in either type person.

              • My money is on they’re hiding something. Tech clueless doesn’t even apply to the Amish anymore. Welcome to 21st century. I mean, my 65+ parents have Facebook accounts.

              • I do not have any online presence, mainly because I do not live my life on line. His OW however had many accounts, in fact their Facebook accounts let everyone know they were a couple before my ex filed for divorce. Her linkedin account paints a rosy picture. How she owns a fitness club and is a marriage and family counselor. What a load. It is not a truth. Get real. These people are ghosts. I will take a meet in person over online any day.

              • But Dat, the only reason I know anything about 22 year old OW is because of what she has on line…..and she has EVERYTHING on line….stuff I dont want my kids to know. Thats how he worked out he preferred her to his marriage and his family. If nothing on fb is real anyway, why not just rely on good old fashioned honesty? I hate the idea that my life is publc record, i am not on any social media because I do not need him keeping ” in touch” with his family by stalking them!

            • I think we are talkign about two different things: 1) Having some type of online presence in the form of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, LinkedIn, whatever. 2) Having an online dating profile.

              I don’t hold it against someone if s/he doesn’t pursue online dating. I tried it and found it alternatively anxiety-provoking or creepy. Lots of essentially blind dates, which aren’t my favorite thing, or a bevy of 20-something boys offering to email me a picture of their….uh…business.

              On the other hand, I do find it odd when someone has NO internet presence whatsoever. Like, at all. I did go out a few times with a guy like that, and he turned out to be a paranoid recluse who believed we were being watched at all times. In this day and age, you don’t have to broadcast every thought or feeling you have, but it’ seems de rigeur to have some avenue for sharing with family, friends, or coworkers.

              • I’m talking about googling someone and they have NO online info at ALL. NONE, this guy had NOTHING. That to me is seriously spooky.

              • So the day has arrived where one is considered weird if they are NOT on Facebook. We’ve really drank the Facebook Kool-Aid. And LinkedIn? Say if you were retired, why would you need to be on LinkedIn?

    • When I was in that dreadful limbo phase (you poor thing), my ex said, “If you get desperate, I’m sure we could still have sex and then get divorced. I can’t imagine why I didn’t take him up on that offer…

      You will be SO much happier when you’re not living together any more, I can’t tell you what a relief it is.

  • On top of all the mindfuckery I suffered on my marriage, last DDay was when I found a video of my STBXH and OW having sex…
    One thing is to imagine it, way worse seeing it with your own eyes…
    Now I use it everytime I need to get angry and deal with him…
    But it’s one of those things that haunt forever…

        • You realize of course that you possess a very powerful video, don’t you? I’d hand that thing over to my lawyer, asap. Assuming you’re not already divorced. What a lovely legal exhibit that would make. Or veiled threat, as in, gee, I’d hate for the Wrong People to see that video…

          Does anyone look good in a sex tape? I’m sorry you can’t unsee that, but can you at least ridicule it?

          • Well, not so fast. I too possess something similar evidence wise, and now my STBX threatens me with a lawsuit based on invasion of privacy and keeping someone else’s property. He said the same thing about emails btw him and AP even, citing that I “illegally” obtained those emails by logging onto his account. I haven’t consulted with an attorney on this but I’m afraid he might be right??

            • Obviously, check with your attorney.

              However most states are “no fault” w/regards to divorce. Having proof of an affair won’t matter in court.

              • Though states are no fault, evidence like this can be very, very helpful. All four attorneys I spoke with were glad I could prove the infidelity and said they could get significantly more in the settlement because of the evidence. KEEP THE EVIDENCE IN A SAFE PLACE AND DON’T BACK DOWN. Check out several attorneys before you choose your divorce attorney. If money is an issue, ask if you can have a free, initial consultation. Never hurts to ask.

            • Check with your lawyer to calm your heart down. I don’t think “invasion of privacy” extends to spouses. Just tell him when he took out that marriage license (that’s what gives the court its jurisdiction) he waived his right to privacy. But you’re going to enjoy watching him try to make a constitutional, federal case out of it!

              They do know how to bluff though when somebody is holding a much better hand.

              • I was told a similar thing by an attorney…..married people don’t have much of a “right to privacy” from each other. It’s assumed that when you’re married, you pretty much don’t have privacy from each other and therefore share everything. It’s very hard to prosecute a privacy case between married people who are living together.

                So I think the video is as much yours as it is his. Keep it. Even if you can’t use it in a legal context, it sure will be a powerful motivator to make him behave. Or, the OW may be scared of the video getting out, so that’s a motivator, too.

            • At least where I live, he would be right… the law is on his side…
              BUT here the lawsuit would take forever, the punishement would be a slap on the wrist and after shown the video can’t be unseen!
              So first I’ll settle the divorce!
              Then we’ll see!

            • I depends.

              I also have similar evidence, naughty emails, crotch shots, (how classy!). I asked my atty what I could do with them and what would happen if, oh…people would see them.

              She asked how I obtained the stuff. And did he know and “consent” to my possession of the stuff. In my case, he gave me the password to his email where I discovered the crotch shots and sexy talk. He knew I saw it because we had many arguments about it in person, via phone and email. His knowledge that I had it and not asking for it “back/destruction” is “consent”. Essentially he gave it to me.

              However, she also advised me that he could still sue me, since you can sue anyone for anything, but that he would 99% lose and did I really want that headache for a small victory.

              So in a nutshell, it’s really more blackmail ammo than anything, especially if you got it by hacking an account instead of WS stupidity.

            • Given that many cases of infidelity are discovered by reading the cheater’s email/texts/ipad/phone, it seems unlikely that he has strong legal ground here. Otherwise, many of us would have ended up in court for this “invasion of privacy” that he claims.

              Even if you can’t use it in court, what if it accidentally and anonymously fell into the hands of —–fill in the blank.

          • I’ve thought about the power of exhibits in the divorce negotiations. Once it’s in court, it’s a matter of public record. It would get picked up via a background check, I imagine.

            Affairs feed on fantasy, and the last thing that fantasy wants is real life peering in. The people involved can make believe that the cruel twists of fate have kept them apart, forcing them to snatch forbidden moments while the rest of the world isn’t watching.

            A sex tape means the entire world could watch. Probably snicker. Maybe laugh.

            Suddenly the fantasy doesn’t measure up, as it were.

          • I live in a no fault country, so the damn sex tape can’t be even mentioned…
            BUT it is good leverage against him, a well know surgeon!!
            I’m waiting for the right moment to ” leak it”…
            OW CRIES to mutual friends saying I’m persecuting her, and they met after we separated..can’t wait to start whipping out my phone and showing people who’s telling the truth.

            • law is very murky about this stuff (hacking into or using pswds to access your spouses account). Likely not going to be accepted in evidence if your spouse says you hacked his/her account. Also, there have been cases where a spouse did this and got convicted and fined because you are invading privacy without permission (you have to prove you had permission). Claiming the spouse gave you the passwords and permission is fine in divorce court but then your ex could drag out a civil case where you have to prove it. CL’s husband may be keeping up on this better than I have since I lost interest after my divorce was final 🙂

  • I’m with River when she says “many of us chumps are in for a wonderful surprise when we begin sexual relationships that are free of blame and shame and twisted mind games.”

    My situation was much like Mike’s: married 22 years, together 24, and I was monogamous throughout. My ex-wife? Not so much. Between 3 and 6 affair partners based on what I know, likely several more, some of the affairs lasting many years, covering the last 12 years of the marriage at least and likely the whole she-bang (pun intended).

    My first time with someone else after divorce? A bit dream-like, as if I were living someone else’s life. I mean, this was 2009 and I hadn’t had a new sexual partner since, uh, Ronald Reagan’s first term? But . . . MIND. BLOWING. Exhilarating, mysterious, and comfortable all at the same time. Of course, this was mostly because of the amazing woman I was with, someone I had taken the time to get to know for several months, someone with whom I had a lot in common and who was comfortable with her own body and like me possessing the reciprocity gene. But the sex, even viewed outside the frame of the relationship that developed, was wonderful. As in, filling a person with wonder, like fireworks-inside-a-cathedral wonderful.

    When people say that after divorce “it gets better,” Mike, no small part of what they’re talking about is between the sheets. Invest in a few nice shirts, fashionable shoes, and some high-quality sandalwood soap, and go find your fireworks.

  • Mike,

    I was in a similar spot almost 2 years ago. Couple of things I learned:

    1 – Dating has changed dramatically since the 1980s. Technology has changed everything. Things move much faster now than ever. So, do your research. Read every blog, website, magazine, etc. about dating that you can find. The info will be invaluable.

    2 – Make sure you are in dating shape. Check your wardrobe, shoes, etc. to make sure they are current. Get in physical shape – no one wants to date a slob. Polish up on your manners. Clean the inside of your car. Don’t bring you date to a dirty house.

    3 – Rules??? Unfortunately, there are no rules. What’s up is down and what’s down is up. Don’t expect anyone to tell you what the rules are and don’t expect the rules to be consistent from person to person. You’re going to need to rely on your own moral code. The “Golden Rule” will never steer you wrong.

    As for the first “new” sex after a long marriage – it’s going to be strange. No way to sugarcoat it. The sounds, smells, actions will all be similar yet different. It will be awkward. You’ll be insecure about X and she’ll be insecure about Y. Neither of you will discuss it, but you’ll get over it. The key is to relax and enjoy the ride ;).

    Best of luck and happy hunting!

  • Mike, I would be interested in knowing what were some of the things you did to get rid of the baggage you made reference to in your post. I’m getting better but I can always use help.

    23 years of having sex with the only woman I truly wanted to share that with for the rest of my life was something I was proud of. Having been with only one woman (my wife) where I felt comfortable enough to experience what I will call a full release of emotion was something I felt was important. She didn’t. My ego was shattered when she admitted to her adultery and was even worse knowing that she lied about it several times prior to know it was with a turd she dated in High School 30 yrs ago. All the blameshifting crap she said after I found out was even more hurtful. “It’s never been good” “I wanted to feel something” “You never wanted to” blah blah blah. That is going to take awhile to get out of my head.

    My STBXW on the other hand had other partners prior to me and would often say something snotty referring to me not being as experienced. I honestly think she felt the way I was raised was wrong in her mind. I’m sorry but I was raised to value intimacy, especially fidelity. I believe that her FOO caused BPD gave her the idea that sex = love. This is a huge problem for her but she won’t admit it. I just got caught by her lure of frequent sex. Me being shy, I never dated till I was out of high school and even that was VERY limited So when she came into my life we were putting a lot of nickels in the jar almost immediately. Today I know better,

    Now with the Divorce coming up, dating after that will be as foreign as ever if and when I ever get to that point. Right now I want to concentrate and getting her crap behind me and to be the best Dad I can be.

    Best of Luck Mike!

    • Bud, you sound like a very sweet person and one that some woman will be so grateful to have some day. I used to say that with my ex, as long as we had sex as often as he wanted, but never spoke a word to each other, he would feel like everything was okay. I needed emotional connection to make it work, but the more I pushed for that, the more withdrawn he became. I guess it was our inability to communicate that was at the root of our sexual problems. I’ve discovered that the better I feel about myself, the more sexual I feel in general. When you feel unwanted and unattractive, it sure doesn’t make you very amorous.

    • Bud,
      I had a bit of an advantage over most Chumps, as I had worked in a Rehab center for drug addicts and alcoholics back in the 1980’s. I applied what I had been taught about addiction to recovery from a long term marriage… suddenly being on my own, left with two kids, it felt and looked an awful lot like withdrawl.

      I knew my body was battling the “fight or flight” hormone cascade from the stress, but there was no one to fight and no where to run… so I did the next best thing, I hit the gym just about five days a week, dragged my bike out of the garage and rode about ten miles every day. This helped burn off a lot of the stress, anger/pain and left me exhausted enough to get more than two hours sleep. I’ve kept this up and I believe it truly made the biggest difference early on.

      Between times a I read everything I could find on “Walk Away Wives”, Divorce Busting, “Mid life Crisis” and joined a Men’s Forum, the guys stories repeated pretty much word for word what I had been through, the concensus being that the only way forward was to go total no contact where possible, make a recovery bucket list that pushes the envelope and stick to it. Looking at our shared histories made me realize that we had very little to do with the end of our marriages, none of us had been unfaithful, abusive, drug addicted or any of the standard things trotted out by our X’s, our greatest crime appeared to be that we were dependable and boring. Our wives were silently “Unhappy for years” (even though the family photo album said otherwise) It also didn’t appear to make much difference if we were rich or poor, the most horrendous stories were actually from the more well off guys. If I were to make a list for my personal recovery and baggage removal it would be this:

      -Realize this has very little to do with you, but do look at yourself for areas that could use improvement, for you, not anyone else.
      -Reconnect with old friends, do “Guy Stuff”
      -Don’t do the rebound thing, take a year to work on you.
      -Go NC with your spouse, no contact unless it’s business/kids
      -Join a gym, go at least every other day
      – Remove everything from your residence that was theirs, redecorate
      -Make a bucket list of everything you wanted to, start with the small stuff
      -Get a new wardrobe, you’ll need to if you’ve been at the gym.
      -Get involved in your community, volunteer*.

      * This one is very important, it rebuilds you social life, and the positive feedback you get rebuilds your battered self-esteem. It also opens up a large dating pool when you are ready.

        • I agree Bud.

          Mike, that’s a very heart felt post and I can relate to all of it.

          I’m 6 months out from separation, and decided to try dating only 2 months later. I figured that since my marriage had been dead for 3 years since Dday, that there was no grieving to do.

          It was actually okay dating a new woman, but I realised I wasn’t ready. Now I’m very content to work on me and the dating and relationships can wait.

          Regarding sex? Yes ,we did go there. She really wanted things to move along quicker than I was ready for, I realize now. It was okay, but not the amazing, liberating thing I thought it would be. I enjoyed the dining out and intimate and interesting conversations far more. I have no regrets and learnt from it.

          It sounds like you’re travelling along nicely. The grass isn’t necessarily greener over there.

      • Agreed with the physical fitness thing. For me, I’ve taken up running, and it’s an opportunity for me to get away from everything for a short while and just be by myself. Yes, I’m in better shape and look better, but those things are secondary to my sanity right now.

      • OH, my GOSH!

        You guys are awesome! SO giving me hope for when I get back out there.

        Well done! You’re all catches!

  • Mike…
    Remember the “you” prior to meeting her. Open yourself to the posibility that someone out there is longing for you to Rock Her World…in AND out of bed.
    I took 2 years after my wifes exit affair to pull my own shit together and clear away most of the mindfuckery residue.
    BPD exwife was so insecure, she systematically pummeled my self esteem for 25 years so that I would never feel attractive or desireable to anyone else and therefore would never stray.
    She didn’t need to, I am extremely loyal…but she is wired to be controlling – and devaluing me kept our relationship under her control.
    In the end, she left me for OM, and I was a mess of insecurity and self-doubt.
    Eventualy, I tentatively re-entered the dating pool, and guess what?
    Balanced, self-aware, non-disordered woman are happy to find (and sleep with)
    Normal, self-aware, decent surviving chumps!!!
    Soon met an amazing woman who shares my values, thinks I’m awesome, and sees me for everything that I AM, as opposed to ex who constantly pointed out everything I wasn’t.
    I had only ever had sex with exwife. After 25 years, going to bed with my 2nd partner ever was daunting but also exciting. As the constantly accommodating chump, I took for granted how much value I brought into the bedroom.
    New partner is (allow me to brag a bit), thrilled with my passion, enthusiasm and demonstratable skills. Enough said!
    Mike…she is out there, be open to it. Your amazing love/sex life is just beginning!

    • Don – Were we married to the same woman??? My XW would always get on me about what I wasn’t (stuff like I wasn’t outgoing enough, didn’t like going to fancy parties where I knew very few people, didn’t read the books she wanted me to read), and when she finally got past some of her insecurity, she left me for her OM. I was too busy making sure the house was in order.

      My XW was my first time as well, and I waited until my late 20’s (good thing I was good). She was also pretty much my entire dating history save for a few 1-2 date acquaintances (I have graduated from “painfully shy” to simply “introverted” over the years). I was thankful for what I had for those 7 years and felt fortunate to have it, and blessed to have my wonderful children from it.

      There have been so many great posts about getting to the dating phase here. I hope those thoughts will be true for me as well. I’m obviously nowhere near dating again (I was dumped in the Spring) and am still thinking way too much in terms of “red flags” whenever the thought of dating creeps into my mind. Honestly, I’m scared of it because I feel that since I’m near 40 it’s supposed to be like “riding a bike” (to borrow a much-too-used cliche) and here I am and I don’t really think I’ve ever had the training wheels off.

  • I don’t know what to say about this. But, I am very embarrassed to say that I was married 3 times before this time and now this one is over. This one lasted 21 years. The others only a few years each. I feel like such a dumbass. The 3 times before were marriages resulting from pressures from my Grandma (God rest her soul). She used to tell me that having sex outside of marriage was a sin. So when I met someone and we started having sex, she would say, you shouldn’t be having sex with him unless you are married and bam I would get married. Not surprising they never lasted. I even married someone I didn’t love (3rd husband). My Grandmother brain washed me over and over again. So imagine me trying to go out and date now? What do I say…Oh I have been married and divorced 4 times now? If I do, they will run the other direction. I am not looking forward to dating so I just will put it off. I don’t want to meet someone nice and then I have to eventually tell them my history. Luckily, I don’t have children. Does anyone have any advice for me about it?

    • Hi Maria, my advice is to ‘fix your picker’. Once you’re confident you can tell a good relationship from a bad one, an emotionally generous person from a selfish one, and a ‘keeper’ from a ‘let’s enjoy it while it lasts’, you’ll feel much more comfortable with dating and relationships.

      And people don’t need to know your whole history right away; once they know you, they’ll be able to put it in context. When I discuss my past relationships, I often say ‘I had a lot to learn, and I learned something important from each one’.

      • Hi Mike, As you’ve read, there really is light at the end of the tunnel (no pun intended here!). I was together with XH 32 years, 26 of marriage. He was my high school boyfriend and only lover. I came away from our marriage feeling like a sexual zero. To add injury to the insult, the OW infected him with herpes which he passed on to me. While I am asymptomatic and have never had a breakout that I am aware of, reentering the dating world with little self esteem and the possibility of passing on a STD was daunting. It took me five years to venture out into the dating world. That was almost four years ago. I met some lovely gentlemen and I was honest with anyone who I was seeing for a bit about my status. To my amazement, it wasn’t an issue for most and practicing safe sex was that much more important. And I discovered that, in fact, I’m a pretty accomplished sex partner. For the past year and a half, I have been dating a beautiful man. He accepts me just the way I am, and we have a wonderful time together. Not just sex, but in being together, talking, doing anything from cooking to sports. You sound like a true blue guy
        and some woman will be very fortunate to meet you. Believe me, there are many women looking for a gentleman like you. I think some of the other guys have given some good advice about getting your head and wardrobe into the dating scene. Good luck and please write back to this blog to let us all know how you are doing. This is an amazing community!

  • Mike, I was married 20 years, and my ex was the only man I had ever been with. Sex was always an issue in our marriage, because he didn’t have much interest. When we DID have it, it was actually pretty good.

    Anyway, after Dday and separation, then divorce, I was scared to death to start dating. Plenty of coffee dates that went nowhere, and not much else. But two months ago, I started dating a guy who seems normal, nice, intelligent and stable. I am still very, very cautious, still do not really trust him (or any man), still don’t feel any “blaze of passion.” I am fond of him, I do enjoy his company, and I did finally go to bed with him just a week ago. It had been 2.5 years since I last had sex, believe me, I was nervous! It had been a very long time for him as well.

    Was it great? No.
    Did I feel strange having sex with a man not my ex? Yes.
    Do I hope it will be better next time, and continue to get better? Yes.

    I don’t think there is any way around it, it’s nerve-wracking to get back into the saddle after a brutal experience being chumped. I’m not sure I will ever trust a man 100% again. With new guy, I find myself constantly looking for red flags, wondering about every little thing and what it means, waiting for the other shoe to drop when I find out something major is wrong with him. On the one hand, I don’t want to fall for someone who has major issues. On the other hand, I find myself wanting to reject him simply for being imperfect, as are we all. It’s difficult. I had new guy to Thanksgiving so my family could meet him. They all really liked him a lot. But still, I doubt, I question, I struggle with wondering if he’s secretly a monster like my ex.

    Anyway, Mike, I think the only way through the whole dating roller coaster is to get on, strap yourself in, and ride the ride. I don’t like dating at all, but outside of arranged marriage, there’s no other way to ultimately meet a decent person and have a relationship.

    Best of luck to you, and don’t get discouraged or give up.

    • Hey! Arranged marriages!!! That is a GREAT idea! I hate hate hate the whole dating thing, the beginnings of relationships, the not knowing how it will go. Maybe instead of a Chump Dating site, CL should just set up as a match maker! She’s got a good picker, now!

  • Mike, I was married for 31 years and had never been with anyone else. My ex pretty much devastated me in the sexual department. By the time our marriage was over I thought I was done and might as well join a convent. The thought of being with another man was terrifying. Low and behold, though, an old friend and I started seeing each other and he was very patient and kind. The more we got to know each other, the more secure I felt, and the more I felt drawn to him. I remember standing next to him at an event about 6 months after we’d been dating and being shocked that I felt attraction for him. I hadn’t felt that in years! A few months later we ended up sleeping together and it was very healing. I discovered that I definitely wasn’t dead in that department, in fact very much alive! My friend had been through divorce too so was very supportive, he was also very open and honest about his feelings which was new for me too. I feel very blessed to have him in my life, although I’m not sure I ever want to get married again. It has been a huge weight off my shoulders to know that I was always capable of responding, just not to someone who didn’t seem to really appreciate or care for me.

  • Mike:

    (Global warning: I don’t mean to come off as misogynistic, if I do… that is not what I intended. I’m talking guy talk to a fellow chump man. Second… I’m just gonna be blunt.)

    First, don’t feel intimidated. I did, it is normal to. But, you are a sensitive man. Which puts you in a class of lovers many women have never known. If you can still mastrubate, you can have sex. Don’t expect to be a porn star, don’t set unrealistic goals. Just be you, communicate, take your time, and enjoy yourself.

    Next, dude… we exited the dating pool at the same time, and what is going on now is not what you are thinking. Obviously, you are not a player. But, you are entering a world where ladies (real ladies) are willing or expecting to have sex on the third, second, or even first date. If you are like me, sex brings feelings of monogomy, honor, and duty. If so, SET YOUR PERSONAL BOUNDARIES NOW, AND STICK TO THEM. Seriously, the last thing you need right now is a pretty lady who is ready to roll, and who will either dump you fast, or expect you to feel so grateful that you will be hers NOW, just because she “gave it up”. Some of the modern ladies are more than willing to find a good man, sleep with him, and then manipulate and guilt him into sticking around. You do not need a skilled manipulator ever again.

    The only defense is to start thinking the way ladies did when we were young. Know your boundaries, and stick to them. Resist the urge to find the affection you have been missing. Have sex when you want to, and are ready. If she has a problem with that, it is a huge red flag.

    Why do I say this? It happened to me. All through college and high school, I couldn’t pay to have sex. Since my ex left…. well… I was not prepared for what women were willing to do, as fast as they do now. And, what I am warning you about happened to me more than once. Now, I would rather be taking care of myself, than dealing with manipulation or mind fuckery from another lady ready to take advantage of a good, but lonely older man.

    Subject to errors, written on my phone.

    • This about what I’ve been hearing from friends who are a year or more ahead of me in all this, it’s almost as if the tables have been completely turned. When we were in our teens and 20’s it was the girls who were being picky and it was the guys that weren’t.
      It makes me think that guys that have it together at our age must be rare.

      • I’ve heard this from a divorced male friend as well. He said it shocked him when a woman accused him of being gay because he didn’t want to sleep with her on the first date!

  • Hi Gotthatny, I agree that there are women who are more than willing to give it up within the first couple of dates. And as a woman who wasn’t looking for a quick lay, it was frustrating to encounter men who expected sex after the third. It was almost like that was a formula. Feel free to ignore any of that advice that you get from anyone. My boyfriend and I felt a profound connection on our first date based on shared love of family (both being single parents), sense of humor and similar wonkishness. We decided after our second date that we wanted to wait at least two months of steady dating before getting intimate. It was awesome to get to really know someone without feeling like sexual anxieties were hanging over our heads. Once we were intimate, it was off the charts and more than a year in, it gets better all the time.

    • I like that you talked about it and made the decision together. I have decided that I will take it slow with anyone I start to have feelings for, mainly because I want to make sure those feelings are solid and real. If a man doesn’t want to wait then he’s not going to be the one for me. I’m not talking blue balls, of course, but I want to take it slowly. My ex and I had fantastic sex and I think that blinded me to a lot of things about him.

  • Mike – I was married 26 years and our sex life dismal. Over the years I convinced myself that I was not a sexual person – that that part of me was unimportant.

    After the divorce I was certain that I’d live a celibate life because that was the kind of woman I was wired to be.

    Well… As it turns out, that is not who I am! I met the most amazing man (following Tracy’s sound advice of being selective and picking someone who shares great commonalities).

    Actually, after my first sexual encounter with this great guy I wanted to post on Facebook “so this is what all the fuss is about!” It was beautiful and more fun than I ever could have imagined.

    I’ve come to realize it is difficult to have a fulfilling and satisfying sexual relationship with someone who is giving their best sexual effort elsewhere. Unfortunately, we chumps were in marriages with the most selfish of the selfish and their best efforts were never saved for us.

    • I guess in many ways I was more fortuneate than most Chumps, my married sex life was great, right up until the last month we were still under one roof we never went more than a couple days without sex unless one or the other was sick or Aunt Flo was visiting. In my case my X hit 45 and just seemed to unravel, before that we seldom had any issues about anything .

      • My ex and I always had a great sex life as well, up until a few years before dday. Then it suddenly became less and less frequent. I realise now that’s because he was having sex elsewhere. So at least one of us was having sex in our marriage.

      • Mike I have a question. Since you thought you had a great sex life through out the marriage. Did she feel the same? Or did she then start saying the opposite?

        I thought our sex was very good too. Then after she hit 44 or 45, our friend died, a classmate of hers got brain cancer. (he survived), Our oldest was graduating HS. Kids were growing up and didn’t need her to do everything for her is when all of a sudden she jumped on the crazy train started going out more and more after work with her friends and started the me me me attitude and couldn’t bear the thought of growing old with me.

        • I was going to also add that she was also taking Paxil throughout most of our marraige which is a libido killer that I had to work through. I do think this was an issue as I could always tell when she missed a day or so.

          I’d be interested if any other chump’s cheaters were on Paxil.

  • My ex was and had always been fairly inadequate in terms of his sexual prowess. Even with my limited experience, I realized this since the beginning (we married at 25). I tried to talk to him about it when we were in our 30’s (problem now called “ED” and “PE”), but he became angry. His performance deteriorated further over the years, and by the time we were in our early 50’s, he could barely function in the marital bed. I remember thinking, “I will never have good sex again.” I attributed it to his aging, medications and general lack of ability, but I loved him so I accepted it.

    Then, on D-Day, I found out that my then-husband of 25 years was a cheating monster, I mean multiple affair partners, group sex, two decades-long AP’s, constant online porn, etc I could not help but wonder how he could have been so bad at sex with me but been such a whore. I mean, it was to the point that the first thing I asked him on D-Day after the horrible revelations was: “Did you use Viagra?” I figured that was the only way he could have gotten such incredible acts of infidelity done, so to speak. I have a whole other theory on why he was so bad at sex within the marriage but that is for another day.

    OK, so back to the question. I was terrified when I started dating my now-fiance 8 months after my divorce was final. I knew him for a long time before, he was a chump himself, always a nice guy, and divorced 7 years ago. We had sex on our third date (sorry if TMI but I want to give a woman’s point of view here), and I was terrified…and also STUNNED, because it seemed to me that he was seriously good at it, so much so that I felt almost like I did not know what to do, and I was very shy. I was terrified I was inadequate. But soon I got more comfortable and realized that this is what sex is like with a non pathological man who really cares about me–wonderful. I have a better sex life know with my fiance now than I had with my ex even in our 20’s. We have an emotional, spiritual and sexual connection I simply never had before, and which makes for a pretty incredible attraction.

    Life (and sex) with our cheating exes has beaten us down. We have lost our perspective and our confidence. Mike, I am simply over the moon to have such a good, normal, solid (non-sparkly) man, and there are many good women (and men) out there.

    So go for it Chumps!

    • Same story kelly, which I was and am surprised he was entertaining and getting a 22 year old pregnant. I figured he was a virgin the first time but it just never got better, at all. I am so happy you have found such joy, but I guess there is a real part of me that still wonders was it my fault. And if it was, how can I even think of getting out there again.

      • No Nat1, it was NOT your fault. These guys have faulty wiring and I believe can only respond sexually to “normal” things. My ex was a “sex addict” and probably never was faithful to me, and I learned after D-Day was heavily involved in pornography too, hence his inability to perform well “normally”. It becomes a soul-searing and confidence warping experience for us. If I had never forced myself to get back out there, I would never have had great sex, and woild never have known how wonderful life and a new love could be. Just because it’s scary doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go for it!

  • This left me with ED. Maybe it is my age, as well, combined. Drugs work but the side effects are tough(really bad headaches).
    I cannot distinguish between a variety of causes for this problem. Age? Loss of confidence? Disgust at my aging body( I was once in really good shape and have let things slide, due to depression, lack of energy, and just trying to figure out why the fuck it matters anymore. I was really fit and decent looking and my XWs still cheated. So , what is the point in getting fit and cut, again((assuming it is possible)).
    My GF still seems to love me, but it suck that I am no longer as vigorous as I was. Got those years stolen from me.
    I guess I need to get to the gym and get a RX for Viagra or whatever. Seriously, though , I amway more inhibited, ashamed etc now.
    I never, ever had a problem with this when i was married and under the impression that my wife cared for me. Just worked like a charm.
    I wonder if it is more difficult being a man post cheating in this regard. You cannot fake an erection.
    WTF, I still can break par on the course.
    If I qualify for the US Senior Open, I am advertising for Chump Lady on my bag.
    I fantasize about winning it or finishing well and , in an interview saying” this is for all the betrayed spouses of cheaters out there. I won this one for you guys. Never give up and let a cheater win or take your life.
    And, get ED drugs, you guys who have had your balls cut off by this”

    • Oh, Arnold. All I can say is that I thank you for providing a male perspective on this topic. As a matter of fact, Im grateful for all the men on this blog, although i wish we werent meeting here for this reason. I applaud you for being open to discussing such delicate topics as it proves that you have a sensitive and thoughtful side.

    • Exercise really helps with ED, as does supplimenting your diet. Best get your testosterone checked, if it’s low you’ll feel like crap all round and your libido will go downhill in a big way.

    • I would think that depression could cause ED.

      As for the point of getting fit – for you!!! Exercise makes you feel good.

      • Never forget, that your ex wife destroyed your self confidence, and confidence is a big part of ED. Talk to a psychologist, get an ex for the depression, get an tx for the ed. And hopefully, when the right person comes along, and your confidence is back, the ed rx will just he for extended fun.

        Above all else, try to enjoy this.

          • Yes need to get testosterone checked. But, I wonder, maybe it is just not natural to have high T at this age.
            I think I stArted with high T. I was A pretty good athlete in school and kept fit into my 50s.
            I will look into it. Thanks

            • Arnold, consider getting a full hormone panel done and there may be things you can do, like testosterone supplements, I think they are shots. I’m a woman and am having issues with hormones too. They are different issues for women but we have them and some make having sex difficult, also faking it is not why we want sex right? 🙂

              • All the best Arnold. This whole betrayal thing hits Chumps really badly.

                I hope that exercise, a T count and processing all your grief and anger really helps you, as it does sound emotional.

                Sadly I am in the place where I cannot even imagine dating. I feel shame and humiliated for being Chumped. I feel small and dirty and unattractive and unlovable. A nunnery sounds like a good sanctuary right now.

                So it is so wonderful to hear all your stories.

              • Patsy, I hear what you’re saying regarding wanting to check into a convent but whenever I start to feel like this, and I do often, I remind myself of my late aunt who after upon learning of her husband’s infidelity became so distraught and bitter that she literally bought a cabin in the poconos, quit her job and lived there for the last 20 years of her life supporting herself only by cleaning houses and collecting welfare. She was a beautiful vibrant woman prior to this. Of course, the douchebag went on to remarry and branded his ex as crazy.

    • I’m cheering you on for the US Senior Open!

      I’m betting ed in your case is mostly psychological, from all the emotional abuse from your ex. I’ve read your previous posts and she really wasn’t nice. At. All. And then to be betrayed by cheating, on top of that. It’s hard to reconcile the love you genuinely once had for someone, with how they actually treated you and how they left, scorched earth.

      I used to love sex….but after dday, it holds no interest for me, I believe because it was the sexual betrayal that dealt the final blow in killing the dream of my marraige and intact family. I couldn’t get turned on by anyone right now. But I know this is temporary, and due to the fallout of dday and the emotional mindfuckery leading up to it. I feel that I’m on the path to genuine healing by taking it slow and healing from the inside out (heart and mind), rather from the outside-in.

  • Hi Mike

    Agree with what the others have said about a man’s wardrobe. I sometimes go to the pub with my boyfriend and there are a lot of men there that try to hookup (funny to watch actually). But anyway, most of them don’t have a clue about their wardrobe, e.g. they wear a crappy old polo shirt tucked into cheap denim jeans with a brown belt and white running shoes; often topping off their look with a really really bad haircut.

    We often comment what an amazing difference it would make for these guys to get a good haircut, get a stylish pair of jeans with a nice fitted shirt (not tucked in) and a modern pair of shoes…. simples 🙂

    • Maybe they’re thinking they’ll get the woman and then she’ll tell him how to dress?

      I think a lot of men leave this over to the women. My father couldn’t dress himself if it weren’t for my mother. (Okay, he could but it would be dark socks and sandals, a dorky tshirt, and pants pulled up to his armpits. And a pen protector — former engineer.)

      Totally agree — if you’re in the market, get a spiffier wardrobe. And ask your sister how you look or some other woman who’ll tell it to you straight.

      • I used to sort out ex’s clothing. Once i kicked him out and he ran to one of the other OW he is now under her care and dresses according to her taste. Freaked the kids out that the way he dresses literally changed overnight. And it was drastic because she’s young and he’s middle aged – so picture what he’s wearing. 🙂

      • You can also get a Wardrobe Consultant to help, too…..they are becoming more popular because of shows like What Not to Wear. They give you the straight talk on what you need to buy and how you should wear your clothes, given your life situation and goals. Just a few hours of help can be very valuable, and isn’t that expensive. Plus, you may trust their opinion more than someone who may have bias as a friend.

  • I think I am still in shock from doing the ‘pick me dance’ and ‘swinging’ from the chandeliers for my XH after I discovered little Miss Sparkly Knickers to consider having sex with someone else after my XH. It’s been 2.5 years since DDay and 2 years (6 mth false reconciliation) since I was last intimate with my XH or any man.

    But his words that ” I was a useless lump in bed” still haunt me to this day, not enough to seek a therapist because I know it was just him lashing out – but they did cut like a knife.

    Now I registered with an online site 2 mths ago and have not been able to respond to any winks, or emails because I am just not really interested in them and I am not that desperate to get laid, I am going to cancel the subscription next month, sadly, it really is just entertainment for now (some of them appear nice though, but my picker is on high alert and any red flags get the ‘instant delete’ treatment- like the guy whose profile pic was him and his mum, or the one who worked in an abattoir and reckoned his biggest ‘influence in his life’ was ‘himself ‘- if you know what I mean)

    I will say that I have been very shocked at the attention from certain men (including the married ones) at work and at other people’s parties who assume you are ‘available or desperate for company’ just because you are divorced/single.

    I am not desperate, not even giving off those signals (and I know I am not) so why do they assume I would be willing to hop into bed with them?

    I have had a few instances where I thought having a coffee with someone was having a coffee, now I know it can be a code for something else. Am I naive or what? I had male friends at uni, what happened here, you get to 40+ and suddenly ‘coffee’ takes on a whole new meaning?

    I cannot imagine being intimate with someone else at the moment, being more confident with myself and with my body will help in the future – but to be honest the dating rules have changed a hell of a lot since I last did it 22 years ago.

    • You know what, Digbert, your ex is a flaming turd out of Satan’s ass (borrowing one of many fine quotes from Chump Princess). Fuck the lying narc and the horse he rode in on. He’s the cheating pathological dope trying to justify his pitiful existence. I decided shortly after my ex left that the last story in my romantic life was not going to be the terrible things he did to me and said about me. Take healthy time, but don’t put our life (and love) on hold forever, these cheaters have stolen enough.

  • Hi Digbert. I can relate totally. The pick me dance bs was soul destroying. My XH used that opportunity to push for a three way with my best friend. WTF!! (Didn’t happen) And we had a very solid sex life throughout our 30+ years together, as in at least every couple of days. So, I came away from that just scared to ever take my pants off again. After the five years of celebacy, I found myself starting to want get physically close to someone again. Friends set me up on dates. I tried online dating, and it was a good experience for me. It was painful at first. I kept pushing myself and, eventually, it became fun. I didn’t take it personally if a date didn’t work out. Dating is kind of a learned skill, in a way, or at least that’s how it felt to me. Being persistent helps you hone the “picker” too. Then I met my beautiful boyfriend. So, there is a future of possible love out there-really!

    • I feel those few “pick me” months I went through were possibly the worst part of her adultery. I should have kicked her out immediately. I honestly thought she would open her eyes and see how wrong she was. Too late she was long gone as she never really stopped being in contact with her AP (Adultery Partner) Funny what a few months of hitting the hopium pipe will do to your ego.

      Although my hopium addiction was short in comparision to some here. It is a terrible drug. If anyone is still taking this drug. Get yourself clean, You will be much happier.

  • Nord and Arnold, I wanted to comment that there are people out there who are also looking for something meaningful, and will respect you that much more for wanting to be patient, whatever your reasons may be. Arnold, thank you for being open to talking about ed. It’s a common reality over 50. If I am not mistaken, all men experience some prostate enlargement with aging, and that can affect erectile function for sure. Any good woman will not be phased by that.

    • You know, it is really not so bad, except that I feel bad for my girlfriend.
      I have 5 kids. So, the urge to procreate has been satisfied. And, despite what I have said, I find I am still in decnt shape as compared to a lot of guys my age. i think I could get really fir in about two months, as the decades of training that i did before the last year or so still have residual effects.
      Thing is that the drive is just not there. My GF is really one of the best looking women I know. She is kind, loving, and just great.
      But, I am 60(crap, how did that happen?). My mind just does not go to that place anymore. Intellectually, I know, I am suppose to be vissually stimulated etc. But, this is entirely out of my control.
      My GF and I often say to each other that we wish we had met while in our prime. But, that did not happen and we both were married to spouses who , repeatedly rejected our advances and made us feel bad for approaching them for sex.
      My second wife was a true psycho. She is 17 years my junior and purued me and my paycheck big time about 16 years age.
      Anybody ever read Shari Schreiber’s “Trapped by Pregnancy” article about BPD women and how they snare mates with pregnancy? That is exactly what happened(and I would go through this crap again, anytime, just to have my wonderful kids).
      Anyway, she began rejecting me all the time. Once, she got me aroused and just walked off, leaving me hanging, while saying ” I just wanted to see if I stiil got it”.
      That is fucking insane. What a bitch she is.
      Anyway, I am torn as to what to do. I am not unhappy at all, as I mentioned, I have very little sexual desire anymore. Yet, everything else is working. I an really still strong and can really still pound a golf ball. My memory is not as good as it was, but i am still halfway sharp.
      So, do I start injecting hormones or something when I may not be designed to be all testosteroned up at this age?( I suppose a diabetic could aske something similar re insulin).
      I just do not know. Are 60 year old guys supposed to be able to have decent sex or are we just being subjected to some propoganda that gives us unrealistic expectations?
      My friends seemed aghast at the fact that I was alone for years, with no desire to chase women. But, I wonder if they are really all that horny themselves. I wonder if they thought i was gay (nothing wrong with that).
      Weird stage of life. I am content. My GF is so nice and fun. But, I am not horny in the least. I suppose I will start losing facial hair and grow breasts , soon. WTF , this aging thing is all new to me.

          • If you get a physical you can have your Dr. ask for the blood work to be done to see what your levels are. Or you could try some supplements from the Pharmacy and see if you notice any difference. You would most likely need to take them for awhile to truely notice.

          • A dermatologist ordered blood work for me that included checking the hormone levels. Insurance covered it in my case

          • “I wonder if insurance covers it”.

            Ok, Arnold, as a fellow male traveler on this road, it’s time to have a little man-to-man chat.

            Stop fucking making excuses and spinning your head around with this whole question about “Test”. Your proud of your golf skills? Your proud that you “once were in shape”? But something is now missing. That “drive” is now missing… So maybe we are not “designed” to have T-levels like when we were 20, 30, whatever… DUDE we were designed to procreate by 15 or 16, and become buzzard fodder by 25. Welcome to 2013 My Man! Guess what you might make it to 110 pretty fucking easy. So WHO GIVES A SHIT what “nature” intended? Take your Doc your postings from here, and ask him or her (mine is a her) “Gee Doc, do I suffer from Low T? ” And get your blood tested! You could still come back with “normal range for a 60-year old” which is a bunch of baloney, and say “Doc – I never wake up with morning wood anymore. I don’t give a shit about sex anymore. I’m depressed. I don’t have any zest for life. Can I have some “t-cream” or perhaps anti-depressants? Which one is better? Which one is worse?” I have taken both. Anti-depressants make me in orgasmic. I could not ejaculate. Made me “feel weird” like pins in my legs. THAT’S depressing. Regarding “T” ? I got injections. 100 mg once a week of good old fashioned “T”. It works. It does not fix your life, give you wings, or anything else like that. It just starts to naturally help your body, well, function like a male’s body should. Your not going to go “roid-rage” on 100 mg a week at age 60.

            You got this my man. Your still active, you got a hot girl, you got your golf game, your just a chump, with probably Low-T. Get a little bit of your edge back, you might work out again, you might start feeling better about that, all of the sudden your wanting to bed the GF more often, and success breeds success. You got this my man. No one is looking, kick the ball out of the sand trap. Fuck the “rules” – your making the rules now. You got this.

      • Arnold, I am a woman but felt just like you do after my hysterectomy at age 40. It certainly decreased my desire, and how I felt about myself. I still feel it was kind of the downfall of my marriage because sex was the most important thing to my ex, and everything changed after the hysterectomy. I really thought the lack of drive on my part was because of the sudden loss of hormones, but have been surprised that with a kind and caring person my drive has been reignited. I really thought it was gone forever. I’m going to enjoy it for awhile because who knows when it might leave me again? Anyway, I think it would be good for you to talk to a doctor, but if you and your girlfriend are happy the way things are don’t worry about it. My parents stopped sleeping together 20 years ago because of my mom’s numerous back surgeries. My dad didn’t leave, he still loves her and is taking care of her now in old age. Being a loving, caring and compassionate person is the most important thing in a relationship.

        • Good for you Lyn! My Ex lost interest after we had our 2nd child, because she did not feel “pretty”. So what, her breasts and belly had stretch marks. She had two babies! And it was “my fault” her body looked like that. We both chose to have kids, but somehow it was my fault she now felt less attractive. Did I leave? Did I cheat? Hell no. I did whatever I could to help her understand, I *really* did not give a shit. What did she do? Get a mommy makeover. Get new tits, for her boyfriends to play with. Oh, the crocodile tears were amazing when she denied she was having any actual sex with her AP because she “SOB SOB SOB… did.. sob… not… want him to know that her tits were not….. SOOOOB…. real!”

          Guess what bitch you ain’t real. Never mind your tits or new belly button.

          Your Ex had a choice to stand by you, work with you and your doc, try hormone replacement therapy, and generally not be a jerk. What exactly would that have done? You would have reciprocated in bed. And who knows.., maybe that could have kept a nice little pattern in place. Good for your parents, cheers to your dad for being a real man. And who know really? Maybe they enjoy things that your not privy to. Maybe at this time, being together is enough.

  • I can sympathize with a lot of that – with my ex for nearly 28 years, married for 24+. He was the only man I ever dated. I hadn’t been a on first date since 1985, and had never dated as a full grown adult. (Although it turned out he felt entitled to keep dating.) I also had a hysterectomy last year, and was feeling strange about having to tell future partners about that – how does one gracefully bring that up? I even had a secret fear they would think I’d had gender reassignment surgery, when they didn’t find a cervix up there (I also have breast scars, because I had a medically necessary reduction.) Go ahead, laugh at me :-D.

    I’ll just echo what everyone else said about making sure you’re dating someone kind and gracious about everything else – her character will follow you into the sheets. I am trying not to worry too much about the “new” dating rules, and just go by what I expect myself – thoughtfulness is never out of date, you know?

    I’ve only dated one guy since my divorce earlier this year, and he was indeed very sweet . . . and also a little bit naughtier than my ex, which was equally good for me, haha! Despite his serious screwing around, my ex was kind of a stick in the mud, in bed – kind of a One Trick Pony. The Very Nice Man was really kind about the fact that this was extremely fresh territory for me. He was also only just starting to date after his divorce, and the fact of the matter is that everyone comes to bed with their own set of insecurities. Nothing he was concerned about, bothered me – truly.

    However, there was one issue that came up for me that is probably somewhat unique to Chumpdom . . . as a Nice Guy will, he wanted to know what I liked. (Not just in bed, but especially there.) It was a giant deer-in-the-headlights moment for me, because, as a former Chump Extraordinaire with an NPD ex, I had become EXTREMELY used to simply accommodating whatever my ex said he wanted or needed, and fitting in my needs around the edges, no matter the context – in every aspect of our lives, but definitely in bed, too. I had lost the ability to discern what what “me” and what was “all about him.” I had NO IDEA what to tell this guy, seriously. It was actually harder for me to begin to trust that I could tell my new guy that sort of thing, than to get naked in the first place – I felt like he’d be gentle with my body, but I couldn’t initially trust he’d be gentle with my desires, if that makes sense.

    But like one must, I just kind of leaped forward and started figuring it out, and he stepped up too, making the best use of whatever I could wring out LOL. It’s really been the only difficult side of resuming having a sex life again – but eye opening, too. I really did not realize I’d left behind the ability to decide what I like. I reclaiming it as fast as I can, even though I’m not actually seeing anyone right now . . . although things are looking good on that front. Learning what I like (in all facets of my life) has been really healing for me, and kind of profound.

    Good luck out there!! I’ve had good luck with e-Harmony, by the way. I feel like they’ve done a decent job actually matching me with the sort of men I like – and I know not everyone agrees, but I think the fact that people have to pay a bit for the service, makes people a bit more serious up front. There aren’t any questions that each of us is indeed looking for a romantic connection – none of this “is this a date or not?” baloney.

    • Oh, and two dating tips: the first guy I dated did two things that especially charmed me: 1) He *always* called when he said he would and 2) He always sent me a thank you note (email) that night or the next morning, after a date. Just something short and sweet, but thanking me for my time and attention ;-).

  • I am so very touched to hear the honest and heartfelt stories out there. When my ex left, it took a couple years to pull my life together to the point where the idea of dating even appealed to me – those first years were just about breathing in and out and making it through the day. I am also a single mom of two school aged children (no contact at all with exH, so no free weekends to date either), so I wanted to be sure that the kids were doing well before I socialized much.

    About a year or so ago, I did meet a nice widower online; we dated for about six months, but both of us were pretty old fashioned, so things didn’t progress too far, and we parted ways as friends (he just wasn’t ready to date – still very much grieving his late wife). It was nice to have coffee and dinner; I have a little more confidence in the idea of dating now. It’s sad and familiar to read the stories here – I have one to add – my exH stopped kissing me soon after we were married. He claimed “kissing is for before you’re married – once you’re married and are having sex all the time, why would you bother with that?” So, until last year, I had not been kissed AT ALL for over 12 years. Pathetic now, looking back, what I was willing to endure; I love kissing, and used to be quite good at it. I am so looking forward to even the idea of a lovely goodnight kiss again…

    I am nervous too about the changing “rules”; I’m haven’t dated since the 80’s either, and I’m apparently not one of the “new” cougars out there – my personal boundary is still needing to be in love with someone – for me, that’s about preserving my heart. After years of being married to someone who admitted as he left that our whole marraige was a lie; that he “never did love me” – I’m don’t want to settle again for anything less than love – the kind that’s made real by simple, sweet, everyday kindness.

    You chump fellows out there have given me so much hope; you awesome stron chump ladies that share your stories of hope and strength; and you good, decent, and genuine men are out there. Hugs to you all.

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