This is a “My truth hurts” story.
Been married 20 years and found out 4 months ago that hubby was cheating. Truth is, we had not been sexually active with each other for years… I’d try to get him into counseling, but he didn’t like talking about his problems with a stranger. We were best friends, talked every day, slept in the same bed, had similar interests, raised great kids, worked hard, laughed a lot, held hands, kissed all the time, blah blah blah.
Then, I found out about the affair. His response? “We never had sex anymore, it was embarrassing, and I guess I was tired of it but didn’t know how to say so.”
He left the house, moved to his mom’s, asked to work on the marriage, had lots of discussions about how he had stopped talking to her (not), and was really giving us a try. Lied to our kids, and our families. I did tell her husband and they are now divorcing.
I made all the changes he asked for, also lost the requisite “affair weight,” and all for nothing. We are divorcing, I’m 53 years old, overweight, thrown out like yesterday’s trash while he flaunts his much younger girlfriend around. I feel lost, I feel like I’ve been held underwater for 20 years, I feel used up and no good to anyone ever again.
That is my truth.
Come up for air.
You’ve been held underwater? Used up? Feeling no good? Time to take back your life.
Start by finding your righteous anger. Fuck him. Seriously, fuck him. He didn’t like a “sexless” marriage? Well NEITHER DID YOU. So, who did you go out and cheat with? Oh, that’s right. You didn’t. He was “tired of it, but didn’t know how to say so”? What? He can’t pick up a phone and call a therapist? Book a weekend away? Buy a sex toy? Have an honest conversation?
Talking about “his problems with a stranger” was too hard. But fucking a stranger? Piece of cake! (I pun.)
Talking about it is “embarrassing”? But breaking up two homes is what, ennobling?
Fact is, he made a deliberate choice to deny you sex, probably because he was getting it elsewhere.
He was happy to eat cake (have his affair and his marriage) at your expense. You found out. You blew his cover — he didn’t confess. He was OKAY with the status quo. No consequences! Perpetual cake!
He’s an asshole. This isn’t about how sexless, or overweight, or worthless you feel — it’s about HIM. His shitty character, his shitty behavior. Don’t internalize his stupidity. Infidelity is no measure of your worth. It’s a rainbow nation of chumps — thin, fat, young, old, blonde, brunette, rich, poor, saggy, firm. Oh, and sexless and sex-crazed. You could be screwing him 24/7 and if he wanted to cheat, he would. It’s says everything about his character, and nothing about you.
Fact is, Chumptastic, if your standards are low enough, you can find someone to have sex with you any time you want. Hang out in a bar after closing, find a Craigslist ad, whip out a credit card. He’s not some hot commodity because some younger woman wants him — he just lowered his standards. The OW cheats with him and on her husband. Two scummy people connect. This is nothing enviable. You too could fuck around, but you don’t.
I would also add, infidelity has nothing to do with your desirability. Just because his dick doesn’t rise to the occasion, doesn’t mean another man’s won’t.
Now if I were Dan Savage or someone else, I’m supposed to take this “sexless marriage” thing really seriously. Well, I do. I think if someone deliberately withholds sex from you, that’s shitty. It’s something that needs to be addressed honestly. You tried to address it with him, and my guess is you thought “Well, for some reason, he can’t have sex, but we have all these other things together and I’ll make my needs smaller and do without.”
I understand the chumpy impulse, but that’s the moment to examine your values — how much does sex mean to me? Is it acceptable to do without? Is this the sort of relationship I want to be in? And have a CONVERSATION. And if your needs aren’t being met (and physical affection is a legitimate need!), leave honestly. Your husband could’ve had a similar values moment — but he made a unilateral decision to fuck around on you instead.
The Dan Savages of the world would excuse such unilateral decision making (as a response to what they’d blameshift as your unilateral decision to Deny Him Sex), because Sex Is Of Paramount Importance! It trumps considering your partner and his or her health! Obey the Boner! Is cheating “optimal”? No, but hey, the MAN NEEDED SEX!
Okay, you know what, cheaters? — go for it. Please, fuck the younger woman, the Thai prostitutes, the Craigslist hookups, the slutty co-worker. Do it all in service to Almighty SEX. Make that your paramount value. And good luck later when you need someone to change your colostomy bag. When you’ve traded all your gold for a magic boner — who’s going to love you when you’re old and vulnerable? When your equipment fails? When you’ve invested all those years in the magic boner and not in meaningful relationships — then what?
That Thai hooker is going to step over you and your wrinkled junk and steal your wallet. Schmoopie is going to be sick of your shit and find a new mark. Your kids will find you a colossal embarrassment. All because you sold your soul to the Magic Boner.
Chumptastic — start seeing this clusterfuck as HIS mess. HIS problem. HIS stupidity. Stop internalizing the rejection. You were rejected by an idiot. You have real values of love and mutuality — he doesn’t. In a way, it’s nothing personal. Your values don’t match.
Let him go chase boners with Ms. Younger — you go be mighty without him.