"Funny how anything we don't do ourselves gets a negative label."
Exactly. Perhaps you should take your own advice and not be so judgmental of people with different ideas than yours. Just because you have a different opinion on the issue than others who responded does not make your opinion better or more evolved. It just makes it different. Judging from other things some of these folks have posted through the years, I'm pretty sure they're not nearly as sexually repressed as you seem to believe. They just disagree with you on this question. If you and your partner(s) are happy acting out and sharing such fantasies, more power to you.View Thread
It's hard to read to much about this one incident without knowing anything about what your overall issues are, how the two of you communicate, etc.
But it seems to me that, in a healthy, loving relationship, we want to do little (and big) things for our partner, to make their life a little easier. And getting someone a tissue certainly qualifies as a little thing, for heaven's sake.
How is the division of labor in your household, generally? Does your husband do his fair share? If he does, he might resent being asked to do more, even if it is tiny little things. If he doesn't, then he might be super-defensive about being asked to do things because he knows that you do more of the household work than he does.
Also, it's possible that "acts of service" might come more naturally to you as a way of showing your love than they do for him. Have you read the Gary Chapman The Five Love Languages book? Also, the very best marital how-to book, IMHO, is John Gottman's The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work. If you suggested reading one or both of these books together, do you think he'd go for that?View Thread
This is all pretty typical stuff. I'm right in between your age and your husband's, so I'm living this stuff. In our case, it's my wife who has gained a little weight and mostly lost her libido. (The low libido started for her way before the weight gain.)
Not only does she hardly ever want to have sex, but her self-consciousness about her body is a major turn-off when we do have sex.
3 times a week would be like a dream for me. We're around more like 2-3 times a month. Of course, what's more important than what's typical is what works for you and your husband.
"My partner doesn't initiate" is also a really common complaint. Maybe he's just less the initiating type than you are? I for one am not likely to initiate unless I get some sort of indication from my wife that she might be receptive to romance and sex. Men aren't known for their attention to subtle cues, so you may have to be fairly unsubtle in sending a message of your sexual availability in order to get him to initiate.
When you initiate, is he generally game? If so, maybe you just need to initiate more, have more sex, and be happy.
Does everything work alright when you do have sex? Is it satisfying for you and for him? Men sometimes avoid sex when they are concerned about some real or perceived problem with their sexual performance. Does he have any problems with ED, premature ejaculation, etc? Does your typical lovemaking lead to satisfaction and orgasm for you? If not, he might be feeling gun-shy for some of these reasons.View Thread
My wife kindof out of the blue last night got an idea for a short family vacation over Christmas time which is totally unappealling to me. (I don't even need to tell her that, she stated right up front "I'm sure you're not interested in this at all.")
We have 3 kids, late teens/early 20s, and she wants to invite their significant others, which would make this a trip for up to seven people. With airfare, hotels, etc, that could get really pricey. (She wants to go to Vegas, which, to me, is a strange place to take "kids" who aren't all 21.)
We *never* take expensive trips like this, so this is really kind of out of the blue. We do technically have the money, but we had earmarked it for other purposes (kitchen remodel is the big one).
I guess I'm mostly a little hurt that she would push to spend a lot of money on a trip she's fully aware does not interest me at all. I know that I would never do that to her.
It did, but it still bothers me that, when we disagree, she clearly sees my differing preference as an obstacle (standing in the way of what she wants) to be overcome, rather than as something to be honored and reconciled with her own.View Thread
Yeah--I did propose a couple alternatives. It appears that the idea has died a natural death to to incompatibility of our two older kids' schedules.
My wife and daughter are now looking at going to Cancun. I'd actually be totally OK with that. We are moving my elderly mother to our town in a few weeks, and if they took off for several days, it'd give me some time to spend with my mom helping her get settled in.
I go backpacking without my wife a few times a year (because she is not interested in backpacking), so I'd have no problem with her taking a trip she'd enjoy without me.View Thread
Sounds like cheating could definitely be a possibility, but one thing you need to keep in mind is that everyone has (and needs) some secrets. For most people, those secrets are fairly harmless--coming home early from work for a nap every now and then, spending $50 on that thing you didn't tell your spouse about, buying a bag of your favorite candy and hiding it, etc.
I know, when my wife is away for the day or the weekend, I enjoy that independence of just doing what I want, not being responsible to someone else. (Our kids are teens, so they are either off at college or don't care about my comings and goings.) I wouldn't secretly take a day off to enjoy that freedom, but it's not inconceivable to me that a person might do that.
Or, maybe he's cheating--if it's really important to you (oops--to "the wife"), than "the wife" will have to ask him and press for an answer.View Thread
One more thing about spending money: For almost everyone, major purchases are always a compromise to some extent between what we'd really like and what we feel we can prudently spend.
You said: "But, when it comes to significant purchases, like a car, or something expensive for the house or a trip, its usually a debate and there's always a certain $ amount that ends up getting put on it...."
I think this would be an accurate description of how major purchases get made in most families. Now, if he's buying an $80,000 luxury car for himself but insisting that you spend no more that $25,000, then obviously that is not reasonable. But if that's the process you both go through for a major purchase, that seems completely reasonable to me.
Again, I don't know you or your husband. Maybe he's completely controlling. But the examples you've given don;t paint the picture of a controlling husband to me--they just seem pretty typical.View Thread
My wife tends to communicate and act in passive aggressive ways sometimes. It has been a major source of frustration for me at times. Recently, I have taken to the simplest possible tactic for trying to change her behavior: I try very hard not to allow passive aggressive behavior or communication to get her what she wants.
So, if she asks me to clean up the kitchen, or speaks to me in an adult fashion about her desire for me to clean the kitchen more often, I try hard to respond positively. If she communicates that desire through passive aggressive actions, I make a point of not cleaning the kitchen more. A couple times when she has confronted me about this, I have just copped to it in a very honest fashion--"If you want me to be responsive to your preferences, then don't communicate them in a passive aggressive way."
On another note, I would add that neither my wife nor I would ever, ever, EVER make a purchase as major as living room furniture or travel without consulting the other. You mentioned something about how most wives would just buy the furniture they wanted and their husbands would be happy. I suspect you may be imagining that.
Your family clearly has a lot more disposable income than mine does, but even beyond that, I think you may have a conception of what is normal among your circles that may be distorted. I think most husbands would not be happy about that--they would prefer to have a say about spending significant amounts of money, and probably also about what style of furniture to purchase.View Thread