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Certainly not this:
If he did well I do have some extra merit badges to pin on:
Fuck off, the both of you, who would get a poor woman trapped in a marriage with kids so she can be as miserable and mismatched as either of you.
But these people aren't married yet and sex is clearly important to the LW, while her significant other has been up front about the fact that he doesn't really care, so yes this is an obvious DTMFA situation.
Seriously though, I'm relatively new to this column/blog, and I'm bewildered by the sheer amount of people claiming to be in sexless marriages with "wonderful partners".
He might indeed be a wonderful person, I would not know enough to say, but a blind drunk should be able to see that he is not, for you at least, a "wonderful partner to share life with".
I guess I am quite young and inexperienced in such matters, but doesn't it seem strange that we put so much time and energy into trying to have the best sex possible, yet somehow think it's normal to stay with someone who is not (or not interested in becoming) a compatible sex partner? Do people genuinely believe love conquers all?
EricaP is one of the very few great women that I have had the privilege to speak to. The help she has given me literally saved my life. She is intelligent, caring, persistent, loving, sexy, classy, nurturing, beautiful, loyal, funny, wise, artistic, responsible, faithful, strong, and although I've never met her in person I have absolutely no doubt that she is unbelievably great in bed.
Elizabeth Bennet: "I am no longer surprised at your knowing only six accomplished women. I rather wonder now at your knowing any."
seandr, from what I've heard, if someone's really sorry, their outfit includes kneepads...
@107 The mismatched libidos develop over time, that's what a lot of the people on these threads have experienced, that ten years into a marriage with multiple children, the sex tapers off, and the friendship/shared experiences/life with kids is important enough that it doesn't seem worth breaking up the marriage. I think the problem is that simmering resentment JrzWrld@106 mentions can really eat away at the overall health of the relationship. And about the "love conquering all"...that hasn't been the case for me, anyway. I don't think my husband would feel very loving toward me if I were constantly rejecting him, it all seems to go hand in hand, but that's just my marriage.
You new to reading Dan's column?
Dan's advice to you would most likely be to open up the marriage or, barring that, cheat. He would most likely preface that advice with, "If you didn't have kids, I would tell you to DTMFA....."
He wouldn't just give you permission to cheat. He'd tell you that you owe it to your marriage and family. He'd tell you that your best chance to keep the wife and family that you want so desperately to keep is to cheat. He might just tell you that you owe it to your family.
Read the archives. You'll see.
..., kinky, adventurous, forgiving, a good wife, a good mother, a good daughter, a good friend, tolerant, open minded, soulful, articulate, insightful, direct, bold, heroic, honest, kind, polite, stylish, generous, and hardworking. No doubt I'll think of more but I think that's enough to nullify @86 both above and in any future version that might have the impertinence to appear.
What matters is that he's being a cruel asshole to someone he claims to love--rejecting her, making her beg, using her when it suits his occasional whim, and then slut shaming her by making his ongoing rejection and selfishness her fault. I couldn't give a good goddamn what the underlying reason is, the most important point is that she shouldn't be in this inherently abusive relationship--this is slow psychological torture, not love.
If someone doesn't want to fuck you, turns that lack of desire around on you by painting you as deviant, and shows no long term concern about your sexual well-being, it's not just DTMFA x 1729, it's GTFO x 1729.
Don't subject yourself to this humiliation and cruelty. Please. And dissecting his potential hangups just contributes to that humiliation and cruelty. It's not your business what his hangup is because he's wounding you to conceal it from even himself. GET. THE. FUCK. OUT.
You put that very well. I would say that if you both love each other then love may indeed conquer all.
Rejection can happen only if you ask for something. The longer two people are together the better they should be at understanding each other's feelings. To refuse to "see" your spouse and to continue to ask for that which you should know you aren't going to get is immature whining. Instead ask yourself how you got where you are and whether there are things that can be changed to make you both happier. Dwelling on the fact that there is a lack of sexual fulfillment will not produce more sex.
In my case I started by confronting a profound problem within myself. Having done that I am looking to my wife to see if she will rise to the occassion and do the same. She has some real insecurities that she may or may not be able to master. We'll see. I accept that I may not be able to stay married but I will do everything in my power to try. Know your partner's limitations and sensitivities and you will know how and at what pace you can push for change.
@110: I'm adding my vote for the subtle black outfit. I'm sure EricaP will look both stunning (and forgiving!) in it as Mr. Lime, whose post made me laugh and laugh, grovels before her. But seriously, so much good advice here from all the usual suspects.
In the case of the LW, I don't read a willingness on the BF's part to make changes within himself or to work with her. And, I firmly believe that we can only work on improving ourself, we can't change others. And, we can't inspire or encourage others to change if they aren't committed to choosing how to meet us, that active form of love isn't there.
Just my $0.02.
And not to be a fly in the ointment here, but it sounds like you do a lot to facilitate your wife's work life and grad school/study hours--I was a stay home mum for 20 years, so I know the kind of work you're doing--don't forget that your needs are as important as her needs.
40 was upset with Dan because of what he imagined Dan would tell him to do...DTMFA. Then 40 proposed some "better advice" that was just a really weak, watered down version of what Dan would, in all likelihood, actually advise him to do.
Does my tone make more sense to you, now?
Thank you. That was very sweet.
Don't be shy. It's the internet:-)
Thought you might get a kick out of this:
It's an article on Dan Savage from Washington Monthly via Arts & Letters Daily:
Good morning! Hugs back to ya.
She doesn't do it to prove herself to anyone. She is just one of those people who can't sit still. She works just for the pleasure of it.
I learned early on to avoid keeping pace with her. It only pushes her to go faster or do more. For example there is a limit to how clean I'm going make the house because no matter what I do she'll pitch in and add to it. I half expect her to boil the coffee table some day. So I leave a little laundry for her or let her clean the bathroom. I know that sounds bad --a guy "letting" his wife clean the bathroom-- but it's true. If it helps to know what that entails at least I sit when I pee, as any man would if he had to clean the toilet. (if men cleaned toilets there would be power tools designed for that purpose)
I love her personality and wouldn't change it. I fully support her in everything she does, even to the extent that I have had to push her to do things (grad school) that she was timid about deciding to do because I knew that was what she really wanted deep down. She has total freedom to travel as much as she needs for work, work as late as her job demands, meet whatever friends with whom she wants to socialize. I can do that because I know that she really cares whether those things affect me.
The change I'm looking for is more balance. She is delighted with the sex we're having. I am not. I need greater frequency and variety. My interests have grown considerably since we first met but hers have remained almost unchanged. And if you've been keeping up you know I'm bisexual. 25 years is a long time to go without cock. I'm reasonably certain she's never going to grow one at this point.
This is the person I fell in love with. She is monogamous. That's extremely important to her. I think it has to do with her insecurities and that's where I want to see if she can improve herself. Maybe we can open the marriage or more likely maybe we can achieve a better prioritization of sex in our life together.
There are a lot of angry people when it comes to thinking/talking about sex.
I'm a super type A, and while I find pleasure in my work, I've learned that "desire to not sit still" is seldom the driving force for those of us who work until the point where it throws other areas of our lives out of balance. I'm not going to put a label on it, because I don't know her. It could be about proving herself (to self or others), it could be about avoiding dark thoughts (anything from specific trauma to the general existential malaise common to all humanity), it could be about anything, really, but when someone allows their partner to be unhappy because they're super-focused on their work, there's usually something deeper going on. It took me a while and a really awful break up to realise that keeping the person I love happy is as important as keeping the people I work with safe and healthy.
@132: I don't get that. Who watches porn and gets less into sex? Perhaps if he's got some online relationships I could imagine him getting less into sex with her. Or, if he gets to watch the porn he's into, he might get less interested in vanilla sex. But watching porn makes you think that people who like sex more than twice monthly are sex-obsessed?
I think you've bought the Christianist porn bullshit lies.
How about going poly? Can you have sex outside your relationship with this sexless dude? Is it possible to have a platonic relationship with the man, and get plenty tail outside? Or is he or you wired to be monogamous?
If you are definitely monogamous and can't imagine have other partners, then yeah, don't marry this dude. Sounds like if you are sad now, marriage will be a depressing cell of masturbation. Followed by divorce. Don't make that sort of mistake. Follow your gut's instincts!
I think most people write to Dan because they know they should break up (anybody reading/listening to these advice could have guessed they answer) and but breaking up isn't easy so they need to hear it from someone else. People need more means friends. (or at least friend who'll say the painful stuff)
@137 - we need a website called "What Would Dan Say?" where people can post the problems they're having with their relationship, press "submit" and be directed automatically to a scrolling list of DTMFAs, or one HUGE BLINKING one.
@69 Kim in Portland - I have my stop-watch set until my youngest hits 11. Tick, tick, tick....
@130 Canadian Nurse - I completely agree re the Salon article. I thought the idea of the article, a 30-something mom feeling sexually alive from adolecent male attention was heartwarming. Slog commenters 1 - Salon commenters 0.
@139 - Canuck, Savage has opened my eyes on the cheating/why do we expect everything out of one person thing too. I would love to bring my wife on an exploration. Based on her porn preferences and expressed fantasies, she probably would do it if she felt secure. I have heard EricaPs story, and as much as I love dreaming vicariously through her, my wife would never respond to an ultimatum. Is there anything your DH could say to you to allow solo or mutual outside exploration? Sloggers? Any magic words?
Fulfill some of her fantasies with her. Fulfill some of yours with her. Start with fantasies that are easier and less threatening than solo outside exploration. Perhaps some kinks/fetishes that you haven't explored together, then role plays or dirty talk about other people while it's only the two of you there. If it's natural that what you two do is fulfill each other's sexual fantasies, then fulfilling fantasies that involve thirds or involve sex when the other isn't there becomes easier to imagine.
So many of us woman have been raised that desire for monogamy=love that it takes time to trust that nonmonogamy =/= counting down 'till the breakup. I think the experience of having other people in your sex life (whether physically there or psychically there through roleplay/dirty talk) and having your relationship become stronger rather than weaker is so important to helping her feel secure. That means, of course, that you also need to ensure that your bond is getting stronger through this process.
We haven't talked much about the bi. She finds man-on-man sex kind of gross (my words not hers, but it's pretty clear). I absolutely adore all of you ladies here who find it attractive. You have no idea how helpful that is to me. One thing I've resolved to change is to make orientation more a topic of conversation.
We do have a place to get away from The Boy™ for the weekend and for me especially it always brings high hopes of carnal delight. But here's the thing: I have a few hard limits -kids, animals, scat, and serious injury or death. I'm willing to do anything else and I'm actively interested in quite a few things that I won't trouble you with. She on the other hand is willing to do about 4 vanilla things and nothing else. GGG is an alien concept to her. I'm working on that. Patience. Progress has been made.
We've gotten a lot of mileage out of that overlap. We have had mind blowing sex and have each on more than one occasion been reduced to free flowing tears during the experience. That doesn't happen every time. It ruins you for any thought of casual sex or cheating ever again.
Canuck, you dear lady, no suggestion of yours will ever be "unwelcome."
Canadian Nurse: pish posh, you give great advice, hon!
I hope good things for you. I hope you and wife are making time away from the children, to remember why you each thought each other so lovely to start with.
I'm fascinated by that. Again, lots of women on here say things like that. Just for fun take a look at online personals sometime. Couples seeking a third almost invariably want a woman. "No single men" is a common phrase among swingers. Do you think that's because there just aren't that many married bi men?
@142 - non-monogamy is likely the default for men, or as you put it so much more elegantly "the desire for strange pussy." Don't women have the desire for strange cock?
I was about to adopt the nickname TimBit but that evokes images of women holding their thumb and index finger 3 inches apart......
I don't doubt it. You could be right about there not being many married bi men. But, I also think it may be due, and I have no data to back this up, to the fact that the idea of sexual fluidity in woman is more widely accepted. Thus, women have a level of permission to experiment without having their heterosexual status questioned. Men don't have that permission, so they may fear loosing their heterosexual status. Stupid, in my opinion. Also, a single male may be seen as a threat as a single male lion, wolf, gorilla is seen in the wild, I'm think of Dan's podcast recently of the guy who was upset about his girl having vaginal sex with another guy in a MMF threesome even though he told her to. It could be the way men are socialized to be tough and to fear, and that creates a huge wall in their minds. But does seem that when a woman writes to Dan to tell them that they had a threesome it is a FFM and that she often adds that she hopes that it will lead to a MMF one in the future, and the FFM had to be first because it was less threatening. Those are just guesses, though.
I think Slog, and Dan, bring together people who find the wide expanse of human sexuality and its expression beautiful. We like life colorful. We find people who are comfortable in their own skin very sexy. And, what many in society would think should be taboo, we see as an opportunity to at minimum to become educated about or even explore. (There are exceptions, of course.) And, we seem to share an ethical expectation that integrity is of extreme importance. It may also be that our openness allows us to consider that we could find pleasure in a person of the same gender if we are straight, or the opposite gender if we are gay, etc., and maybe that makes us think that we may be a bit bi ourselves or bi for that one person that defy all and turns our crank? Hence you find women who get why a man would find another man attractive here.
On a side note. Have you introduced your beloved to our Dan? My husband gave me a print copy of Savage Love and it was helpful many moons ago. It made me start thinking. Little did he know that I was so skilled with knots, that I play my best on the guitar/bass when I'm wearing nothing but stilettos or high heeled boots, but he doesn't seem to be sorry. Just a thought.
Sorry to be so wordy.
@151 I bet more women picture strong, unfamiliar hands on their bodies, and not so many picture unfamiliar cocks in their fantasies.
Speaking for myself, well yeah, I think about other guys, no one specific, just random bodies like the headless torsos on the Hollister shopping bags...which probably means it's the newness, or "strangeness" that appeals, not the idea of connection or romance (wow, I sound like a total douche, don't I?) But those are just thoughts, I've been completely monogamous in my marriage. But yeah, I think about it!
jenesasquatch, re: the 3 ways, could it be men have been socialized to ignore any bi leanings they might have, where FF action is such a mainstay of porn that both men and women are more likely to accept that? Just thoughts...and yeah, I'd give my eye teeth to see that in real life...TMI??
@119 - While love can conquer all, it's so rarely possible and adherence to the idea under mistaken premeses can be so dangerous that I rather suspect the net effect is deep in the negative column. But you're a much nicer person than I am. Your conditions seem quite exact, though.
Charlotte Lucas: "Happiness in marriage is entirely a matter of chance. If the dispositions of the parties are ever so well known to each other or ever so similar beforehand, it does not advance their felicity in the least. They always continue to grow sufficiently unlike afterwards to have their share of vexation; and it is better to know as little as possible of the defects of the person with whom you are to pass your life."
@129 - It's too bad your wife doesn't have a stronger sense of guilt. That was one reason why I always felt lucky that none of my SOs were bi. Although I'm as monogamous as anyone, it probably wouldn't have been one year, let alone 25, before I'd have felt so guilty that I'd have pushed him into opposite-sex experiences on the side.
Terrific response! Thank you for all of that. I have discussed particular columns with her but she has yet to develop any interest in reading it on her own.
I would be shocked to find that the men want anything to do with the other guy in the room. Then again women being interested in male homosexual acts seemed like a major disconnect with my experience.
Did I read that correctly, that you'd "give my eye teeth" to watch 2 guys get busy? That sounds like a big deal to you. Have you not yet seen that live show because your husband is not into it?
I agree that Rosamund Pike was wonderful.
As to love conquering all. I think the English word for love is too limited. I prefer the many forms of Greek. And, 'agape', is not for the weak or the cowardly. It is not the passion of 'eros' or chumminess of 'philo'. It's power relies in the commitment to change oneself to meet the other, while they in return do the same. It's actively choosing to love through the alteration of the beloved, locking on to the fixed target, and altering oneself to relinquish that which is inflexible within. It takes very committed people to succeed. And, I have no idea how successful it is, because I only walk in my own shoes and I only know the depth of my own ability to commit. So, it may indeed be rare.
As to one of us being a better person. You are very kind, but I don't think that is a possibility. I think there are many ways to respond to life, and the important part is being true to oneself. I appreciate reading you.
I wouldn't wish her guilty feelings. For me being bi does not mean requiring both sexes any more than being kinky means requiring indulgence of every filthy act that occurs to me (I'd need a team of experts for that).
Now we're getting somewhere. For many who express that it's a turn-on it's probably just a fantasy not to be acted on. And for many men who identify as straight there is a terror of teh gay getting on them. Men and women on slog say these things but how many have or would do them? And how many of their spouses would permit it or come along for the ride? Not that many I'd bet. Canuck only wants to watch and that isn't happening. I think that's perfectly normal.
At any rate, I certainly admire your sense of dedication. In my relationships, I tended to feel each time that I could never give him as much as he deserved (shades of the silver casket!). Lukcily, this never killed anything, but for some odd reason life is much happier now that I've Retired from Romance.
May you soon be bathed in bliss.
@166: Re the whole MMF/MFF thing, pairs looking for thirds, etc., I think it's all down to society's fucked up attitudes towards sexuality. Remember the "one-drop rule" about race? All it took was one drop of African blood to make you black. Similarly, for many people there is a "one-cock rule." You can fuck a thousand women, but if you suck one cock, you're a faggot.
The same rule does not apply to women, of course. MM is gay. FF is hawt.
It's ridiculous of course.
My wife and I have discussed threesomes, opening things up, etc. We haven't done anything yet, but it is something we both want to do. And we're open to both female and male thirds. If there's another man in the bed, I expect I'll be quite happy to lend him a hand - or anything else he needs.
Will that mean I'm no longer straight? Fuck no. My sexual identity is about a lot more than about who I get off or who gets me off. It's about who I lust after, and who I fall in love with - that is to say, it's about women. A man would just be for fun.
And, back at you (@165), platonic-ally sent.
As my best friend who is in the swinger lifestyle says: "the sting of watching your wife get fucked by another guy is taken away by the sight of his wife bent over screaming in pleasure with you inside her." I am paraphrasing.....
I would. I'm GGG with a few limitations. I'm not/was not pulling your chain. As to my better half, we've talked.
@174 - several gay guys on Slog have posted that they often ask their straight male friends for sex, and are often accepted. It's not all fantasy, jenesasquatch @166.
In my experience, gay guys don't ask straight women for sex. I have a couple of gay friends I would love to fuck, and I've made that clear, and they are sweet and flirty with me, but the whole va-jay-jay thing is disgusting to them, so no, ultimately, they're not going to hit it.
jenesasquatch, sending you an email with book ideas, let me know if you don't get it...
But now I remember you just had erotica references for him. Sigh. Off to bed to dream about the book the two of you would write together.
You are incredibly generous. That's how I feel about her, that she should follow her path. I would love her to be able to enjoy sex with others but that's not who she is. I know it isn't. She is indifferent to porn and finds extremely few men attractive (and women not all).
Don't be concerned. You clearly understand there are different varieties of love as do I.
@169 Backyard Bombardier
Great comment. I'm impressed that you can be so free. I suppose it follows from having the security of knowing who you are and being willing to imagine things that would unhinge lesser men. Have fun! 5280 isn't around so I'll say "pictures or it didn't happen."
Tempting idea. I draw and I have thought of doing an erotic comic some day. Or maybe I could get permission to do a HUMP! movie. Then again on camera I look like one of those skeletons in an old Sinbad movie.
I would do a terrible job writing those kinds of books. It drives me nuts when the main characters keep getting interrupted, or change their minds, or whatever, before they finally get it on...my characters would never get interrupted, have wild monkey sex in the first chapter, and wrap things up by page 42...maybe I should consider the short short story...
Versus finding someone who communicates well with me, is attractive, educated, similar hobbies, and all that jazz...
If it was about sex, why would anyone get into relationships? I refrained when I was younger so I could bone a different guy/girl regularly.
@121 - I'm not upset in the least at Dan, just calling out that he's being lazy (or not giving his column much energy with all the other side projects going on)
I think the tone of the 'dtmfa' acronym is simply negative. Its very easy in my humble opinion to discard an argument with a short negative acronym. It puts things in a more concrete state if its spoken with a negative pitch. Its also very boring and while maybe leaving is the right answer a 'dtmfa' probably isn't. Unless you've been cheated on or robbed, etc, you're probably not going to think of your love as a mother fer -- especially if she/he just doesn't want to get it on. For everyone who will disagree with this, try to do it in a positive way and you may see that its a little more difficult than just labeling it in a negative light.
In my case, we have a 16th month old daughter and a dying grandma. Excuses, excuses, but thinking in terms of the other person may shed light beyond a dtmfa. I personally think that my sex life is toast... I don't really see it coming back unfortunately, but I do love my wife and that's where it stands right now.
I do appreciate so much compassion and support from so many random individuals. Makes me feel like DS's readers are a top tier group of people.