SL Letter of the Day: The Wronged Party


Oh, sir, my heart goes out to you. Courage.
Emotional violence, sexual abuse... strong words. I agree with them, but it's still pretty powerful to see someone framing the situation in such stark terms. Great advice as always, Dan (though I might have been tempted to drop a DTMFA... I mean, they don't have kids yet, so he might want to get out while the getting's good).
Right on, Dan. After years of being a reader, I feel like I would have written this same response.
First mistake: Getting married at 23. Did he meet her in college?
1- don't have kids, whatever you do

2- start unwinding this marriage- get on with your life...
Has his wife had her health checked? Could be a medical problem.
How could anyone put up with this for 8 years?
@2 If a woman married a man under the understanding he would make her feel loved and accepted but then made her feel every day she is an ugly loser and nothing more than a hole for his fun and a mother to his kids would that be abuse? If a man was depriving his wife of what she expected a marriage would be would she be in the wrong? Absolutely not.

This cannot last for both of them. Either he will blow up later in life and do something crazy or they renegotiate now. FWIW she is the one who went back on the original agreement, not him.
Dan mentioned it, but I think he could have been more forceful: immediately stop trying to start a family until this mess is sorted out.
@4: So what? That was eight years ago. Heck, how do you know the first mistake wasn't at the 8th grade prom? What bearing does that have on the situation at hand?

Same old, same old. DTMFA, FRO.
Run... people don't change all that much. Even with a "re-negotiated contract" my guess is the resentment of that contract will eventually cause a default and you will be back where you started... sexless and now loveless with a couple kids and a lawyer. Run.

Dan, good advice but this one needs to cut ties.
Talk about low self esteem. I'd like to be a fly on the wall and see exactly how "gorgeous and loving she is in every other way." Somehow, I get the feeling that that's a bit exaggerated.
Oh Christ, end it.

Let's say he keeps going on Dan's terms. He gets to sleep next to the woman who makes him feel "...ugly, inadequate and unwanted..." and the woman who he thinks is "...gorgeous and loving in almost every other way." That sounds like a sick high school crush.

I have no problem with open relationships or another partner meeting his needs elsewhere when it makes sense, but this just seems sadistic to me. Additionally, this doesn't seem like the most stable person in the world. At any time during his extra-marital relationships, his wife could turn around and claim that he was a sick bastard who was sleeping with all different kinds of women behind her back.
Dude, that sounds horribly lonely. I'm sorry. Please do not have kids with this woman. And please see if you can get yourself emotionally ready to explore the idea of ending this marriage. To me it sounds like she married you as a way to get kiddos (unfortunately I know women who are doing this) and that is not ok. You are very young, and you should be fucking your dick off. Think of it like this--if you're not fucking, then what separates this relationship from your others? Nothing. If it's gorgeous and loving you want, you can find that in a friend, you don't need a marriage to satisfy that. It is not right to live in a sexless marriage, vows be damned. Sex is a fundamental human need and we should all strive to connect with our partners on that level as much as possible. I'm sorry your wife won't do that with you.
DO NOT have children with this woman! Say you find your way to passion on the outside while having a child or two with her; say she gets mad a you for some reason. Guess what: you have been scumbag partner/parent in the eyes of a family court judge and you will be lucky to see your kids once a month. DTMFA.
Dan your response is right on. I agree with #2, and thank you, Dan, for using these very strong and very accurate words. This woman has been abusing this man for years now, and his letter is just heartbreaking.

IF he wants to stay married to this person, then YES he does need to renegotiate the terms of this marriage. This female person he has married needs to understand just how dishonest, hurtful and damaging her attitudes and behaviors have been, for years now. (IMHO, he oughta get while the gettin's good, ie, before offspring arrive - offspring would complicate matters GREATLY.) This poor, poor man.

And lastly, I have only one other thing to add, in regards to this female who is married to this loving man: What. A. Bitch.
Dan, I have to disagree - this marriage is irrevokably broken. FRO has explained how he felt, and she blew him off. Now she's using him as a sperm donor - can you imagine how brutal a mother she would be? I say its time for a divorce. Hell, given that she lied about her sexual drive before marriage, he could even go for an annulment.

FRO's wife may be great and beautiful and blah, blah, but she makes him miserable, and is emotionally abusing the poor guy. I say get out before there's kids.
Straight men: unfortunately, women have a lot of sex to create a pair bond with you. Once in a secure relationship, attention is turned elsewhere. I'm so sorry.
This woman is why guys are afraid of marriage.
Do not have a child with her. She will have another excuse to be abusive emotionally. Time for a divorce.
You poor really just need to ake Dan's advice and open up to her. That whole thing about not wanting her to fuck you just to "please" you is bullshit. As Dan says, you need to be selfish in bed and people who are selfish in bed sometimes have more fulfilling sex lives. She should WANT to do that for you. I fuck my boyfriend when I don't feel like it (though I usually do) becuase it makes me happy just to see him happy. She should want to make YOU happy. You should not have kids with her and get a divorce, sorry to be harsh, but she sounds like a selfish bitch. Not everything is about her and she needs to learn a lesson from this.
Hey, uh, StillNon (#19)... The brush you're painting with is a bit broad there, buddy.

Just sayin'.
I know it's hard to accept but I say DTMFA; before you have children!

Take it from someone who knows, once you accept that you've been wronged (and you have), you will only grow to resent her.

You will meet great people who will want to fuck the shit out of you and even if you do you will continue to long for something more. You'll long for someone who can be as "gorgeous and loving in almost every other way" as she is AND who will want to fuck the shit out of you.

Trust me, it's time to move on.
I'm in the "Broken Beyond Repair" camp. He's better off leaving now and starting a new life with someone who really cares for him.

And second what the others said--dear Lord, please don't bring kids into this clusternofuck.
This woman is an ice queen. Sounds like she'd be a horrible mother anyway. Get. Out. GTFO.
If you're married and there is no medical reason for not having sex, but simply a choice being made by one partner, DTMFA.
@ 19, why do you even bother saying anything at all? Are you trying to show off how uninformed of a brain dead shit smear you are? Love, the straight dude who's been married for 12 years, has two kids, and still has sex with his wife.
I'm just going to point out that Dan did not address one of the letter writer's concerns - he wants to fool around have sexy times *with his wife.* I can totally understand that. Sometimes, it's not just the sex one wants, but sex with one's significant other.

Maybe his wife was born asexual, maybe it will never happen between the two of them. But I think he at least owes both himself and his wife a stab at counseling/therapy/treatment to try and get to that place before FRO makes the unilateral decision that his marriage is now an open one (and frankly, I think that divorce would be a better option all around, since that way FRO is free to look for a wife who will want to fool around with him). Maybe his wife has some underlying issue that she's found as difficult to talk about as FRO has found his own issues to discuss with her. I also think he should stop sleeping with her - as bad as celibacy is, it has to be better than being used for sex the way he's being used. He might as well just masturbate into a cup and then hand his wife a turkey baster for all the thrills they're getting out of it.

At the very least, I think this type of marriage is probably a terrible environment to raise a kid in. My parents spent most of my childhood merely tolerating each other, and it gave me a very skewed idea of what a healthy relationship/marriage was supposed to look like. If FRO's wife really wants a kid, and if counseling gets them nowhere, FRO should divorce her and his wife should adopt.
Even though it's the standard advice-column disclaimer, this woman needs a doctor. A woman in her early thirties or late twenties, who feels her biological clock ticking and who wants a baby, should have a physical desire for sex. It's chemical, not emotional. This chick needs her hormones tested.
But here's where Dan's advice is doomed to fail. A woman who already isn't all that into sex (or into it at all) isn't going to respond well to "Either want it or I'm going to fuck around on you and it'll all be your own damn fault". NO ONE would respond well to that. I have a relatively high sex drive but the second the pressure is on it disappears, which I think it pretty common. How about we tell some guy whose dick is limp "get hard or I'm going to fuck around on you and it'll all be your own damn fault"? He'd stay limp forever after that, and it's the same for women. She has a lack of desire, a real issue, and treating it like she's just being bitchy won't help solve the problem. Yes she does need to know that this issue is having consequences and causing problems, so that she knows it's an important enough issue to go see a doctor about. But to be told that she's being selfish and has no claim to monogamy or fidelity at all is really shitty. This is one of those times where it's blatantly obvious that the advice is coming from a man with no experience dealing with women. To a woman, even if it only comes up in theory, "In sickness and health, good times and bad" even means sexless times. It is the bad and it might be the sickness, but it's till part of the vow she probably thought he meant. Sorry if marriage isn't all orgasms and smiles, but that's life. She needs a doctor, not a scolding.
Ugh, I have to disagree with Dan here.

I am not in general a fan of open marriages, but I can see the point in some cases. The right answer in this case, though, seems to be divorce. This isn't about someone who is sick or incapacitated or simply unable or unwilling to fulfill a particular sexual desire. This is about someone who is simply disinclined to meet any of her husband's needs, regardless of its impact on him. She should not be married, at least not to this guy. Yes, he could have sex with other women, but he'd still have to come home to a wife with whom he has no sexual relationship (other than to produce offspring, if he's foolish enough to go along with that). Why not end this relationship as gently as possible and go out and find a woman who BOTH loves you AND wants to have a sex life with you?

Whatever you do, DO NOT HAVE A CHILD WITH THIS WOMAN. That will add stress to both your lives and more incentive to stay together, however unhappy you may be. Even if you are getting your sexual needs met on the side, the damage to your self esteem caused by your wife is not going to simply disappear. What kind of message will that send to a child? What kind of marriage will you be modeling for this kid? I don't think you need a perfect marriage to be "entitled" to have a kid, but this is so very far off from what anyone would call ideal.

You deserve better, at least a more compatible match. Be as kind as possible in letting your wife go, but let her go. And good luck!
Fro - don't have a child with this woman. My husband and I had an almost nonexistent sex life although we were compatible and loving in many other ways. We had a child. Sex life got even worse. Then he completely stopped sex in any form 7+ years ago. The rest of the affection and intimacy went away. Our child made it just impossible for me to end the marriage (don't lecture me - I know it's a compromise). So we're just two roommates living together and raising our child. Not good.

He pretty obviously married her without knowing her and not knowing himself. Marriages that young are really fucking stupid. The fact that the guy has been a doormat for eight years is proof positive of it.
One problem Dan forgot is the very real threat of getting screwed down the line if they renegotiate their "marriage contract"... he really needs to get the agreement in writing, otherwise she could feign ignorance and use his infidelity against him to win custody and alimony during divorce proceedings.
"One other thing worth mentioning is that I know should she get pregnant and have a baby it's pretty obvious to me that sex will be off the agenda again and we'll be right back where we started."

DO NOT HAVE A CHILD WITH THIS WOMAN. Did someone already say that? Oh, look, they did. Several times. I guess it's just that obvious.

Stop. Now. No more deposits. You may not have mustered up the courage to leave her yet - and you know you need to leave her - but it will only get ten times harder with the kid there.

Like @20 said, this is what makes some guys fear marriage.
Also, let's assume that FRO stays with this woman, and manages to wrangle a permission slip from her (maybe she'll feel relieved that the pressure is off her, who knows?).

What's going to happen is that FRO will find a beautiful woman who is into him, who wants to fuck him and get fucked by him and "have...adventurous, fantasy, role-playing, GGG sex lives" with him. And then, because they connect so well, they're going to fall in love, and she'll want to marry FRO and FRO will want to marry her...... and then it's going to be nothing but drama by the bucketful, especially if FRO has already managed to knock up his current wife and has a kid or two with her.

Divorcing her right now will certainly be painful and come with it's own bucket of drama, but certainly not as bad as in the above scenario, which will almost assuredly come to pass... the sexiest woman in a man's eyes is the woman who makes him feel wanted.
I was feeling so sorry for him and then he said he was 31. 31! You're a young man! You are at a stage of your life where sex is supposed to be amazing. Your wife, if she's your approximate age, is at her sexual peak, in theory, and her sexual peak apparently consists in nothing. She either lost interest in sex or was a decietful asexual all along. Either way you've been seriously wronged. Can you seriously see yourself getting to 90 without having sex ever again? I should hope not.

If she's worth it renegotiate the terms of your marriage. Then WAIT a few years and make sure that this adjustment is real and she accepts it in good faith and not just as ploy to get your semen. Once some time has passed and you are certain she accepts you getting your needs met elsewhere and if you can still see yourself married to this woman while not being allowed to touch her, then go ahead with the kids.
Also, the open marriage thing is probably a non-starter. I know Dan's all about the poly thing, but let's be realistic: just statistically speaking, the chances of his wife actually accepting that state of affairs, and dealing with it in a mature and responsible way, are pretty low.
I sympathize with this more than I'd like to admit.

"If you want to remain married to her—and I'm not saying you should—inform the wife that you're happy to start a family with her and that you'll dutifully make your deposits. But tell her that once those emissions are accomplished, FRO, you will seek out other sex partners"

BAD MOTHERFUCKING IDEA. Do not bring a kid into this mess. Even if your wife says "OK, go fuck other people" she can very quickly turn that around into suing for divorce based on your infedelity, get 1/2 of everthing (which she may deserve- I go no problems with that) and, more importantly, get sole custody of the kid or, at best, some sort of shared arrangement that heavily favors her and you get a weekend a month and every other easter.

You think you're drinking too much now? Wait until you can't see your kid. Think your self esteem is suffering now? Wait until your kid starts calling the next sucker your wife hooks up with "daddy". No pussy in the world would make you feel better about that shit.

Look. I do symphathize with where you're at to some degree. But really you're a whooped pussy and while your wife is a real selfish piece of work, you have plenty of options but you'll need to grow a fucking pair and deal with her/your shit. It probably won't be pretty. It'll probably suck worse than anything else in your life ever has. Tough. Man up.

Throw a kid into the mix and it all changes. Every single bit of it. If you love your kid half as much as I love mine and it all falls apart then the story changes from a pathetic tale of a sexless marriage into one that would break my heart. I can think of nothing worse than not being able to see my son and our being a huge part of each other's lives. If the price of that is never having any sex again I'd pay it. Because now it's all about him and not about me.

You're obviously a good dude. You give a shit. You care. And because of that your wife will be able to play you all she wants without having to give a damn about what you want or need. You are letting her. You let her off the hook. Stop it. Get pissed.
@34 This is pretty key and overlooked by everyone so far. Get it is writing or she can blackmail you later in life and ruin your life. Don't want to pay for her to buy new curtains? Too fucking bad she has a dirty secret of yours that will get her everything in the divorce she wants.
When a straight woman feels her marriage is on the rocks, as a rule doesnt it seem like they decide the way to fix it is to make a baby?

Dont make a baby with this woman. do the kind thing for her and for you and dont saddle yourself with a child when this is clearly not going to work out. and hasnt been working out for 8 years.

and dude, lets get you in to see a therapist too, you need support.

The thing is, it is her fault. This is not something that's being going on for a year or two. It's been going on the entirety of their marriage. He should not be such a push over, granted, but she knows he's a push over and she's taking advantage of it. Counseling won't do any good and even if her hormones are fucked up, I think the damage has already been done. I think this co-dependent man needs to grow a spine and leave her before she gets pregnant and he's screwed.


Fuck off. Men do this to women too as Dan's column has illustrated because *surprise* everybody's different regardless of gender. I know at least half of my girl friends bitch about their significant other not putting out enough for them. Don't be a troll.
If you think you're not getting any now (other than to make a baby)- it will be even worse once the baby comes!
@19 - The only reason you need to be sorry is that you have no fucking idea what you're talking about. Have been with my wife for 10 years, and I can barely keep up with her. And from talking to my married friends, my situation seems to be pretty common.

FRO needs to run while he still can. From my experience, having kids further cements the current status of your relationship. If things are already great, they get better. If things are already bad, they're only going to get worse.
Almost from the moment we walked down the aisle, sex all of a sudden was off.

I'm going to assume this means that he and his wife had a fine sex life before they got married. Which essentially means that she deceived him into expecting sex on a regular basis to get him down the aisle. Loving and supportive my ass - this woman is a user. She's "supporting" FRO to the extent necessary to keep him around despite the emotional abuse she's putting him through. (It's kind of like the old textbook cycle-of-abuse, it's just not physical abuse.) God help any children she spawns.

Here's the other thing: casual sex is fun and great and all - really, I'm a big fan - but sex in the context of a relationship isn't just about fulfilling your physical needs. That's a big part of it, of course, but sex within a relationship is also (at least sometimes) an expression of love. A big one. Hell, it's called "making love" for a reason. The choice between physical and emotional needs is a false one - in a healthy relationship, sex fulfills both. To put it in more banal terms, making love is (or should be) as much a part of married life as fucking.

Throw me in the "unsalvageable" camp as well. DTMFA, FRO. DTMFA.
I think this statement needs addressing:
I also told her at an early point in our relationship that I'd never expect her to just fuck me for the sake of "pleasing" me, that I didn't want to be that type of husband. That I wanted it to be about her want's and needs also.

I think you need to retract that statement. The wife may understandably believe that you would not want to have sex with her unless she wants to have sex, and thus she needn't try to "get into the mood" or just suck it up (heh) and please you. This is not a good arrangement.

FWIW, my girlfriend and I are allowed to demand orgasms from each other. So if I'm not in the mood, she can just say "I need an orgasm," and it's up to me to figure out how to provide it. Sometimes I get horny getting her off and sometimes I don't, but either way she looks pretty happy afterwords. And of course, I can demand orgasms from her as well.

This rule has worked out pretty well, especially when we're both overworked and on different schedules, and thus not horny at the same time. It isn't as good as us both wanting sex, obviously, but it's a lot better than feeling deprived.
I'll add to the chorus: do not breed with this asexual lady whom you've had the misfortune of marrying under false pretenses. And I've said it before: the asexual should find their own kind to mate and breed with (if they must breed at all).
Confront the issue. Get help (counseling). If you cannot come to a mutually satisfactory agreement - then get out.

But I'm not hopeful - if it's gone on this long already like this then I think it's probably too late to change.

It's possible she'd be cool with you getting some on the side, but then of course, as others have pointed out, she'd have legal leverage against you in case of divorce.

I don't know whether you can set up some type of contract that would legally protect you in a custody battle but I kind of doubt it. I don't think a court in this country would really protect some "alternative" marriage model. Look how hard it is for teh gays to get marriage.

What 20 said.
@19--the fuck? 38 year old woman, married 20 years, 3 kids--I would consider that a secure relationship. Yet somehow we're having sex at least 4 times a week. How can that be? we'd be having more if he was up for it. He's suggested that I pick up a 26 year old on the side. So, no, women do not put out to create a pair bond just to stick it to the poor straight guy after the I dos are said.
DTMFA, FRO.... BEFORE you impregnate this bitch and are financially tied to her for the next 18 years to support a child you'll only see every other weekend. You sound like the type of man any woman (or gay man) would be lucky to have. You deserve MUCH better. Best of luck!
seems like in a way he's kind of a glutton for her abuse, after 8 years of "don't splay me, Fro" perhaps he might just need to move on.
Dan, I'm with the readers who feel you missed this one. This marriage is not working. This marriage is never going to work. The two of them can remain friends or whatever, if they can swing an amicable divorce, but they should definitely not have kids together. For starters, what kind of example of loving parents would they be setting for their kids? None. Kids need to see some healthy physical affection between their parents to grow up whole and healthy, imho.

The only thing holding them together is inertia. As difficult as all that accumulated inertia makes it, the net sum total of happiness in the world will be greater if these two cut the knot. If they have a kid together, not so much.
I often hear the advice to get medical help if there is lack of desire. Sometimes desire wants what it wants and in this case maybe the wife's desire is to have a kid and have a guy supply half of the genetics (and possibly the finances to raise the kid).

Also, the guy tolerated his lifestyle of a sexless (mostly) marriage for 8 years and therefore may want to explore his apparent desire for desire-less women. Who needs self esteem when you marry someone who isn't looking the other way. It'd be much scarier to pair up with a desiring woman.
FRO, please, please, please, don't listen to Dan this time. Get yourself into therapy so you can find out why you've put up with this shit for EIGHT FUCKING YEARS. Do this yesterday.
Also, immediately stop trying to get your "wife" pregnant. Biggest mistake you'll ever make. Even bigger than marrying this woman.
I agree with all that said that this marriage is almost certainly over and it is *especially* not the time to have kids... if ever.

But I also agree with #30. You can be healthy and have a low sex drive, but if she is truly craving kids plus she's 30-ish her hormones should really be kicking in here. The fact they they aren't is disturbing and maybe indicative of a real physical issue that can be addressed. (Like fallout years of hormonal birth control?)

I also think FRO needs to take some personal responsibility here. He's been a spineless wonder for 8 years and he takes his wife saying she isn't interested in sex at all to be a truth about his self worth. If she has no libido, it has nothing to do with him and it's not personal. He needs to address that issue -- with or without her -- while this topic is hot on his plate. Fantasy-loving GGG ladies who love sex are not going to find men who think they are "ugly and inadequate" sexy, and with or without the wife FRO will still not be getting any unless he learns to find a better balance between his personal self-image and what other people, even his wife, think.
Good lord, a loyal,loving man who refuses to be unfaithful to a inconsiderate ingrate? Divorce her, dear man there are woman who would stand in line for a guy like that.

And I agree whole heartedly with the others. DON"T HAVE A CHILD WITH THIS WOMAN!!! She can go down to the local sperm bank if she wants a deposit and raise the kid on her own.
FRO, your woman is treating you like a cash register & sperm donor. It's hard to admit this about someone you obviously love. From your letter, I'm guessing that you've convinced yourself that she loves you as well, when you know in your heart of hearts that it's simply not true.

I understand your point about wanting amazing sex from your wife, not just any woman. Well, I'd like a magic fairy blowjob every morning & night and the winning lottery ticket. Luckily for me, those things aren't anywhere near the realm of possibility, so I can easily forget them. You have a much worse problem, in that the object of your desire is always around, always seeming w/in reach, always looking like it's going to happen if you just wait a little longer....We get our word "tantalize" from a Greek myth about this sort of torture.

It will never happen. She's told you straight up, she's been honest w/ you, why won't you listen??? It won't happen. Everyone here in the comments section who isn't a troll or a choad sees this. You see it yourself. What we're all waiting for is for you to admit it & get on w/ your life. Yes, there will be pain. Yes, she'll use every trick she knows to get you back. Yes, once you're divorced on lonely nights you'll want to call her. And YES you will find another woman.

Do it.
Take the wife to a doctor. If she's trying to get pregnant she should be seeing an ob-gyn anyway. This total lack of desire may well have a physical cause.
And DO NOT stay in a marriage where you were effectively lied to before the wedding and are now being destroyed. If your wife was as loving and caring as you see her to be this mis-match would have been addressed sometime ago-like in the last 7 years.
Tell your lesbian wife that it is fine for her to fuck other women in your bed, so long as you get to watch and jerk off. Do that for 8 more years (and get lots of footage) and then divorce her.
For fucks sake! Whether you decide to DTMFA or renegotiate the marriage contract, whatever you do DO NOT HAVE A KID WITH THIS WOMAN!!! Not for at least a couple of years.

Your marriage is on the rocks, whether you recognize it or not. Maybe you can salvage it. Maybe you can't. Not my call. Regardless, this is absolutely NOT the time to be bringing a kid onto the scene. If things are bad now, throwing a kid into the equation without resolving it will make it 100 times worse.

My biggest disagreement with Dan is in the timing of the kid. If she agrees with a renegotiated marriage, and says okay to you getting sex elsewhere, do NOT immediately pump out a kid. She mislead you before. She needs to earn your trust this time. Meet your sexual needs elsewhere for a couple of years. See if that works out for both of you. If it develops into a satisfactory arrangement (for both of you), THEN, and only then, should you consider having a kid.
I have a feeling this guy won't have the balls to leave his wife, but he'll opt to talk to her about allowing him to sleep with other people. Maybe she'd say yes. If she says no, he'll probably keep his composure until a good opportunity presents itself and cheat anyway, maybe feel bad about, then tell no one.

I guess we'll never really know, though.
Well...I'm a wife in this situation, pretty much. (So go fuck yourself, 19.) The drinking to compensate - yeah. There are too many nights when I've poured a glass of wine to drown my disappointment. But the difference is my husband won't admit to being uninterested, so I have no basis for going, Ok, then you're going to have to give me some leeway. He talks a lot about how he should be a better husband and claims he really, truly is attracted to me and wants to have sex with me. I'm not nagging or belittling him, or even saying much at all - he knows me well enough to know how I am and brings it up himself. When we do have sex, it can be awesome (vanilla) sex - or end in (what he considers) failure. I can't get more kink out of him than some spanking foreplay. I've tried to figure out if there's some secret fetish I could work with to turn him on, but no, nothing more than liking boobie pictures and even that seems to be "meh." I've even said lightheartedly that he should appreciate what a sex partner he has, because there isn't much I wouldn't do for him, but he just laughed and said something about being sorry he's so boring, har har. Believe me, we share a computer, so if there was something else I would have found it by now. The last time we talked about it, I finally said I thought he should talk to a doctor, but I don't know if he will.

Often I don't even try anything, 'cause someone who doesn't seem to want you isn't much of a turnon. Meanwhile my sexual energy just channels into my imagination. As weeks go by, sometimes months, I sink into depression. "Ugly, inadequate and unwanted" - yeah, to that I would add "old" - I am too young to feel this old. The thought of this being my life makes me want to run away. But we have a child and splitting up our family is not an option. (And there are extended family issues that make it further unimaginable. It's not as easy as people seem to think for anyone to get a divorce.)

And I LOVE him. I was crazily, stupidly, romantically in love with him when we got married (and we weren't kids). But the more time that goes by between sex episodes, the duller my feelings for him feel and he really doesn't get it. Whoever said relationship sex cements the love is so right on. When we've just had some good sex, I remember why I wanted to be with him for the rest of my life, and feel so much love and affection. In every other way he's perfect for me, and he's a good man, a very loving and funny and romantic man, and a great father, but of course when the sex isn't right it becomes the only thing.
Also, for you "disagree w/ Dan" folks: Indeed, he never used the term DTMFA, but his every word drips w/ that attitude. After, of course, his second sentence where he tells FRO that he shouldn't remain married to his wife. Since most of his advice is for what to do if FRO decides to stay w/ his wife, it may look like that's what he's supporting. It's not. Read it again. He even ends by calling FRO a fool for marrying this woman in the first place.

This woman is why I'm afraid of women. What a fucking psycho-bitch.
#39 FTW
I think your first advice should be to get the wife in to see a doctor. Maybe a testosterone patch could help her regain her sex drive. It could just be a medical issue.
It's easy for us to say "Don't have a child with her!" but he seems resigned to going along with it, I don't think he is capable of leaving her. He wants to fix her, he doesn't want a divorce. Obviously he's in love with his wife. Strangers can blithely say DTMFA when their emotions aren't tangled up in it.

I feel awful for him, and I do think the obvious solution is to divorce her and find a woman who adores him and wants a fun sex life with her faithful husband. I don't see him going through with it though.

Isn't she willing to discuss this with a doctor and have her hormones checked? See a marriage counselor specializing in this sort of thing? If this problem isn't fixed then it'll only get worse, especially if they have a child together.

I have a feeling he will look back on this moment and weep, knowing he had a chance to get out before she got pregnant and things completely fell apart.

Dude, don't have a kid with her. You could do so much better for yourself and any future children you have. I know, it's easy for me to say... :(
FRO - my heart goes out to you. I'll chime in with the consensus that having a baby with this woman is a bad idea right now. You're still young, especially for a man (conceiving-age-wise). FIRST you need to either work out a deal that will keep you happy or DTMFA. If you agree to stay, consider whether YOU want a baby. If you don't, there's another problem.

Try to find a solution that results in you being happy PLUS either wanted-by-both-parents baby, legally-tied-exclusively-to-parent-that-wants-it baby, or non-existent baby.
I think folks are being a bit hard on the wife here. It does seem that she's truly lacking in any sexual interest and is being completely honest about it. I agree that the "stopped after the wedding" bit makes it appear as if she misrepresented her sexual appetite before landing the security of marriage. The truth is that they married very young, so it's hard to know how much experience she/they had prior to getting married. Maybe the sex before that wasn't frequent - it was just 'occasional' which is more than 'almost never'. We don't know how long they dated before getting married. Was he her first sexual partner? A lot of open questions here - I think folks are jumping the gun on the wife bashing here. He also sounds like he's essentially given her a free pass on the 'no sex' with many of his statements (I also told her at an early point in our relationship that I'd never expect her to just fuck me for the sake of "pleasing" me, that I didn't want to be that type of husband. That I wanted it to be about her want's and needs also. I guess I've never been totally honest with her about how this all made me feel but I just got on with it. Swept it all under the carpet.)
Having said that, I also feel for this guy and think they need to work these issues out (if at all possible) BEFORE having children. I disagree with the previous poster that said the wife was likely a cold bitch and would be a terrible mother. Her sexual relationship with her husband likely has little to do with her maternal inclination. But having children with someone will tie them together for life, and - sadly - it doesn't look good for the long haul. I hope her doctor can diagnose and treat the lack of libido, since they do seem otherwise compatible from what little he writes. Best of luck to them.
I sure hope FRO reads the comments. And maybe even reads them to his wife.
To all you geniuses out there, what makes you so sure that this guy isn't a lousy lover? Maybe he's the type that just gets his rocks off and rolls over and falls asleep? There are plenty of them out there. She was most probably young when they got together, so maybe she's never had good sex...doesn't even know what that means..been there done that. Don't be so quick to demonize her when you are only hearing half the story.

Remember that he said that even vanilla sex is ok...maybe that's the problem!
@73 You're forgetting one of the key passages in his letter:

I also told her at an early point in our relationship that I'd never expect her to just fuck me for the sake of "pleasing" me, that I didn't want to be that type of husband. That I wanted it to be about her want's and needs also.

Which tells me this guy is a caring lover- so either she really doesn't like sex, or she's doesn't feel strongly enough about sex to actually vocalize to him what he's doing wrong.

Either way, the blames falls squarely on her.
Sure thing, Robin. Now pull your head out of your ass and go back and read the letter again.
@58 FTW

My boyfriend was in pretty much the same position as reaching out. He made the decision to leave the marriage after 6 years (her desire to have kids was, thank god, the wake up call he needed) and he was *shocked* to find women lining up for him because at 30 and after 6 years in a sexless marriage he couldn't imagine doing any better.

I would encourage reaching out to think about the future. Get out, get some therapy, sleep around and figure out who you are independent of this relationship and what you want now. You got married too young but the benefit of that is you have time to find something better. This is what my boyfriend did and now, at 32, he has a hot, GGG girlfriend who fucks his brains out every chance she gets.

DTMFA, reaching out, and in a year you won't recognize who you are right now.
Thing is, Robin, it would STILL be her fault. You know who's responsible for ensuring her sexual pleasure? SHE IS. If he wasn't doing it for her, it was her responsibility to let him know (whether by flat-out telling him or by leading him in the right direction). FRO seems pretty GGG, if you ask me, and pretty damned willing to do anything it takes to please his wife (like remaining celibate AND faithful for 8 years...) I have a really fucking hard time believing he wouldn't make an effort to please her in the bedroom.
Just another voice adding to the chorus: RUN, RUN, RUN, DO NOT DEPOSIT SPERM, DO NOT LOOK BACK. And like an earlier commenter said, whether through books or therapy, try to figure out why you put up with this shit for so long. People usually fuck like rabbits in their 20s, and you said it was never more than once every few months? This will be a sick, sick relationship if you have kids and live with her undoubted resentment while having affairs. You are young and you deserve happiness, which should be with your partner, not with random hook-ups you find to blow off steam.
FRO, you have stockholm syndrome! Get the fuck out now! Do not have a kid with this woman. She married a sperm donor and provider, not you! You're never gonna make her love you or want to have sex with you! Get the fuck out now! Find somebody who does want you. You can marry them and have a kid with them. Run! Run away!
I have more concise advice:

Anyone who puts an apostrophe in "her want's and needs" deserves to live a miserable life.
FRO-do, don't wear the ring
I know it's very tempting
Yes, you will appear to disappear
But the dark riders, they'll know you're there....
I don't rap about bitches and hoes, I rap about witches and trolls
Just passing on the words of the Elven king,
Wisdom to all
FRO-do! Don't wear the ring!
Please, please, please, don't have kids with her. Please.
As a woman, let me say that you do NOT deserve to be treated like this. This sounds incredibly abusive, and you seem too inexperienced to realize it. You are being used. There's no other way to phrase it. Is this really how you want to live out the rest of your life? Of course not. Get out now.
Run, run, run for the hills. Like someone mentioned above, people just don't change that much. For whatever reason, she is an asexual person and there is nothing you can do about that. You can try to look good for her, buy her nice things, but in the end she will remain the same and so will you...sexless and frustrated. You're only 31. You deserve a fulfilling and sexual life. Enough already and pack your bags...pronto.
FRO, what you want is a wife who wants you. Who thinks you are sexually attractive. Who WANTS to have sex with you.

You need to get absolutely clear on the following concept: THIS WILL NEVER HAPPEN WITH THIS WOMAN.

If you stay with her, you will be reminded every day that your wife doesn't want you sexually. Even if you go out with a different fuck buddy every night of the week with her absolute and unreserved blessings, you still won't escape the knowledge that this woman whom you love desperately and with whom you hoped to make a life finds you utterly unappealing. That will continue to taint every aspect of your existence. Even your dalliances will remind you of this fact; you wouldn't be with your extramarital partners if not for that fact.

Meanwhile, these other women who actually enjoy the idea of fucking you senseless on a regular basis -- and might, by the way, be happy to become your next wife, given the chance -- will be unable to form the sort of proper, deep, intimate relationship with you that they probably would like. They will be forever stuck in the role of The Other Woman, and probably won't be willing to stay there indefinitely. That means you, FRO, get a series of unsatisfying relationships instead of the one satisfying one that you crave.

You deserve a real marriage. Please don't have kids with this woman.
Did anyone mention that you should under no circumstances have children with this woman? Because really, that would be about the worst idea possible.

Get into couples counseling now. Or just get out. But do not -- do not -- continue "making deposits". This woman is a terrible partner, and funny thing: terrible partners make terrible co-parents.

You're clearly into the idea of having a family, and that's great. What you have to get through your head is that leaving this loveless marriage does not mean giving that goal up. Get out, take a couple months to get your head straight, a little while longer doing some casual get-back-up-to-speed dating, and then start prowling okcupid, eharmony and successful 31-year-old men who want families tend not to go unnoticed for very long.
Jesus Christ, get out now. Do not pass go, do not collect $200, and absolutely DO NOT DEPOSIT ANY SEMEN IN THIS WOMAN. If you stay you're staying with a piece of shit who makes you feel terrible just for being a man who wants a normal marriage with a woman who loves him. SHE WILL NEVER MAKE YOU HAPPY. GET OUT NOW.
I guarantee that once the baby arrives, you will be expected to put in 110% helping out with the new demands placed on the family by a child. Extracurricular sex will be off the menu then, because she is going to want you home every night to help change diapers.

For the record, in a healthy relationship, that's a perfectly reasonable request, even though sex tends to get pushed off the end of the to-do list even there. But in your case, it will be a convenient excuse for you to continue not getting your needs met. You will have trapped yourself, by putting a veneer of reasonable expectations on top of a completely unreasonable situation. If you think the last eight years was bad, consider that the baby will make it more like twenty.

Don't make a baby with her. Don't do it. Just don't.
Forgive me if this has been said already, or at least something to this effect. But, I wonder if FRO's emotional upbringing may have been stunted for having had an emotionally distant pair of parents (mother in particular), and thus lacks the psychic image of what affection, whether platonic or romantic, should appear to be. Obviously, should Dad and Mom been distant from each other, FRO may not have been able to develop an image of what love should be; and if his parents were distant from him, grasping at the barest straws of affection, he was habituated to appreciate all-too-much the thinnest stream of affections.

I only say this, for my own mother having been emotionally distant, and thus now in my adult-hood, we lack a common system of tropes and understandings to be able to communicate with each other naturally. I simply recall observing her interacting with her own parents, for having been old-fashioned Irish Catholics they had about ten children and then managed to neglect all of them in their development. On the surface they seem to get along without disturbance, but they seem to lack the mechanics to actually interact with other as other people, much less with excited and frantic gestures that would betray a powerful intellectual and emotional connection with each other. Her own parents hardly acknowledge her own existence, and they seem to simply "go through the motions" at family get-togethers. Thus she attempts to interact with me in the manners and tropes of those older relationships, showing herself to be calm-headed, but completely lacking in authenticity and emotional sincerity.

Were it not for my father, with whom I can communicate almost psychically, I would be unable to perceive her awkwardness.
charlie @30: "But to be told that she's being selfish and has no claim to monogamy or fidelity at all is really shitty."

Sorry, nope. People don't get married in order to be celibate. She can claim either monogamy/fidelity, or celibacy, but not both. Dan got it exactly right: if she doesn't want his dick, then she has abdicated all interest in how he uses it.

It's also really shitty to fake a decent sex life right up until the ring is welded on his finger and then dry up and blow away. That's called fraud. If there are some consequences that go along with that, she gets no sympathy from me.

My opinion: Dan Savage should be the decider for all things related to social sphere of politics while Paul Krugman ( should be in charge of all things economic. Let me know when the two of you run for the White House (I don't care who is POTUS or VPOTUS, just as long as the two of you are in the highest positions of power in the US possible SAVE THIS NATION!!!!).
I wish this column had been around when I was in my 20s. I was so depressed about so rarely getting laid (maybe every two years) that, well, it was dreadful. (I'm female, fyi) It gets easier as you get older; I haven't had sex for almost 10 years now (I'm in my early 50s) and it's not nearly as depressing as it used to be. In part because of this column. Whenever I get down, I read Savage Love and thank heavens I'm not involved w/anybody and the horrible problems it evidently brings. Thank you for choosing a particularly horrible letter this week Dan.
can you divorce her and come have some sex with me? i'm only half joking :(
Another thing to consider: If the kind of sex life FRO wants most is the all-encompassing kind (an emotional, trusting, considerate GGG real connection), then how satsisfying would sex really be outside of his marriage to the woman he currently loves? On top of that, how easy is it to find that kind of sexual relationship when you're a married man?

I'm a close to 30 single gal, and I'm tired of getting hit on by all these desperate married men whose wives won't fuck them. Some are kind, witty, intelligent, fun, kinky and have very high sex drives- the total package that I would love to date and have the comfortability to be myself sexually and emotionally around- but the fact that going into it I'd HAVE to stick to my proscribed emotionally unattached role and hope to hell I never fall for the guy... I feel that would be a denigrating experience for me. How is that so different from the relationships with men I've had in the past who said their sex drives were close to nonexistent? I've been in FRO's position in relationships before where guys were proposing to me and serious enough to spend their life with me, but I grew to feel like shit about myself because I couldn't keep a strong self-esteem when I had to suppress a major part of the way I express love (and lust, and everything in between). A relationship with a "happily" married but not getting any from his true love type of man, would be on the same self-abusing level for me, because I'd have to keep the emotional part suppressed.

There is absolutely no reason for me to waste my time on married men. There are plenty of single guys who would love a GGG girlfriend with everything it includes, and plenty of single guys who'd love a kinky fun FWB like me, who has the freedom to stay overnight and wake them up in the middle of the night with a bj, or have them wake up to me in the kitchen making coffee and breakfast in nothing but an apron (grins), or greet them coming home from work on occasion with a maid outfit and a glass of wine and a backrub. You think you can have that regularly when you already have a wife who takes up most of your time and a family?

Screw that. I refuse to reward such cowardice in people I have sex with and/or date. I'll pick a less-than-perfect single guy over the greatest pornstar-esque married guy every time. I want the freedom to totally be me, with no guilt issues, and no wondering whether the guy I'm with is really wishing he was with his wife.

I'm not saying that it's not fair to seek extramarital relations when everything is honest upfront... I'm trying to say that FRO is not going to find the kind of great relationship sex that he most desires when he can't possibly have a close relationship with the women he's "allowed" to fuck.

Please FRO, for your own sake, divorce your wife, start the process of getting your self-respect back and healing from the damage (work out, indulge in your own hobbies and interests, spend time with the people who love and support you), and then get your ass on a dating site or put yourself out there and find a nice kinky single GGG girl like me who wants a nice kinky single GGG guy like you. Let the low libido folks marry eachother, lol.
FRO, try the couples counseling. I don't have a ton of faith in it, but give it a try - pre child. I am in a much less hostile, but largely sexless marriage and I understand the concept of really loving your wife for everything else. If it ends up not working, at least you know you actively tried ( as opposed to just bearing it.)

I feel for you, I've run the "sex isn't that important when you're not into it" talk and meant it. in my case my wife actually is aware of her dramatically decreased sex drive and feels bad about it, but still I'm trying to get the cojones to suggest counseling (there are other complicating factors... naturally.) Give it a shot though. There are professionals who specialize in facilitating this sort of conversation. Again, I haven't been able to do it yet, and I don't know that I 100% believe in it, but if it's important enough to you then it's worth a try to explore the option.

Good luck to you. Take any advice that can be summed up in one sentence with a grain of "you don't know what the f* you're talking about."
So many people are arguing for counseling but they are missing the obvious biological clock in play for her. She's highly motivated to get pregnant or she wouldn't be having sex with him now. She's also perfectly capable of lying (or deceiving herself into saying) that things will be better in the future.

"Rationalizations are more important than sex" - Jeff Goldblum's character in The Big Chill; and FRO is getting a lot more rationalizations than he is getting sex. He'll get even more rationalizations about procreation. I did. Before each attempt, I'd push for us to be as good as we could be before bringing another person into the world. And enough was said, promised, and offered, that I had hope enough to proceed. But finishing the house constrruction, her getting settled in her new work, my dropping 15 pounds, my increasing my income - all were proposed as THE ISSUE but were really just issues of convenience. A year later, a child later, there still wasn't attraction, interest or sexual desire. Just a desire for being married, stability and respectibility with as little of that messy exchange of bodily fluids as possible.

He's in love with her. That not only allows him to be blind/accepting of her breasts as they start to sag, the first few gray hairs, etc. More significantly, his love, which he projects onto her, prevents him from seeing just how cold, unemotional and detached she has become because it would hut too much to realize how little she has felt for him over all those years. But that's NOT his fault nor his problem. That he could put up with it for so long speaks to his strength, character, hopefullness and strong desire for a mutually loving relationship.

Mutual Funds say, "Past performance is no predictor of future returns." But in a marriage, Past performance IS the predictor of the future. Barring some previously undiagnosed hormone imbalance, which she then joyfully takes and suddens overcomes her years of inertia and resentful; the most FRO will get are words about things will be better in the future. Like he got words on his wedding day. Words that meant nothing.

Right now FRO is trapped by his love for her. Soon he will be trapped by that same love (you don't just turn it off, I've found, even in cases like this) AND by his love and concern for his children. All while sinking deeper into depression and hopelessness about never being loved and accepted for who he is.

DON'T MAKE ANY HUMANS WITH HER! IF SOME MEDICAL BREAKTHROUGH IS OFFERED, TRUST BUT VERIFY! If she needs hormone treatment, fine, than do that for 3 years or so, make sure it works and that you're both willing to deal with it. Only then reconsider procreation.

But the short answer is GET OUT! You're not what she wants - her ideal mate is either something she can't/won't admit to but it certainly isn't you. And she's not what you want. You love her? That's something YOU'RE capable of and you're capable of it with any number of women. There is no ONE. Just people who can/will round up towards 1. Your wife isn't close and she isn't trying so she'll never get to where you want, need and deserve her to be.
Oh man, this is really, really sad.

FRO, it's going to suck really really hard to leave her, because it sounds like you still care for her so much. But you don't sound like you'd really be very interested in fooling around even if you decided that you could, and there's no way she is going to change her ways after 8 years.

You have got to go and try to make a better life for yourself. I'm sorry that this happened to you.