Please I Need Marriage Advice

Ready. Set. Sail!

So…um…I need help. I’ve been hiding this from my blog for a while. I guess you could say I was shielding it from the deep dirty scum that could taint it. But that’s not the point of this blog is it? It’s not supposed to be a squeaky clean Las Vegas restroom complete with marble door stalls and a butler who holds hot towels for you. No. It’s a dirty highway gas station bathroom filled with glory holes. I may spruce it up with pleasant graphics but the truth is going to be laid out bare for all to see. I represent the people. That’s my sacrifice. My reputation for the truth. So here goes the toxic spillage. Try to wade carefully lest you get your socks melted off.

I’m not kidding around. This is a really personal post for me and I would really like some good feedback as to some things that people who have been through this before have done to fix it.

I’m at the end of my rope. All things aside, I really screwed the pooch when I cheated on my husband a year ago. No duh! He didn’t deserve it. No one does. And I’m eternally sorry for that. What I’m referencing is something I noticed back at the beginning. I noticed that right before I started cheating I was having problems in my marriage. I wasn’t getting the sexual attention I wanted. For some reason, my husband was too tired to do anything for me. What I found out not too long ago was that he WAS hiding something that was taking away his ability to get hard for me (I don’t want to go into detail). Finding this out crushed me and it lead me to believe that this whole shenanigan could’ve been stopped and prevented!!

But then I would’ve never started The Bipolar Compass and you guys would’ve never met me! Oh how good things can come out of bad choices!

So…in some alternate universe…my husband confessed early on about his issue and we reconciled with couple’s therapy and fixed our sex life and then lived happily ever after.

The End.

But wait! That’s not what happened…or what’s happening. Here’s the deal:

My husband wants sex with me (truly). He has forgiven me for all my mess ups. He is able to focus on me 100% now. But…he is too stressed to initiate. So we have been trying stress relief techniques that help calm him down. Meanwhile, I go without sex for up to a month or more, horny and impatient. I can’t say or do anything to speed things up because it’ll pressure him and he can’t get in the mood when he is pressured. So I try and distract myself. When I’m Depressed, things are easy. When I’m Manic, things get rough.

I start out by doing things that I know are wrong but make me feel good because I need that hit..like opening up the sex chat window and browsing around. I don’t talk to anybody but I get a feel for the conversations and what is going on. Slowly, I start filling my head with “Talk to someone. It’s innocent” or “Have a little fun. You deserve it.” So I do. I start chatting. I end up talking with a guy who lives near me. We go back and forth about meeting up. Decide on a time. And then my mania comes down enough for me to smack myself upside the head and cut him off. I feel like scum. My husband finds out via my blog. He has a harder time wanting to be intimate with me.

Round and round we go until we all pass out and die of cholera. Cholera, right? Isn’t that the song. You know,

Ring around the rosie,

A pocket full of posies

Ashes, ashes

We all fall down.

That’s a metaphor for cholera or something. Idunno. Whatever! Geez Jess what the actual fuck are you blabbing about?! Shut up! OK…OK…fine. Lord!

Anyways, back to my story. So I feel bad for letting my sex cravings get the best of me. I really hate the chatting but I feel like once I’m manic I can’t stop myself. Compounded with the fact that I’m not getting fucked makes it more tempting. It’s like an itch I need to scratch. So I’ve been trying other ways to scratch the itch:

My husband left for a business trip last week and I decided to take my ring off and go out to a bar by myself. It was a quiet little Sunday night and I was feeling really good about myself. I walk in and was greeted with a huge smile by the bartender. He asked me what I wanted and handed me a menu. I thought I’d take my time and get something nice to treat myself. After all, I needed it. I ordered a nice dry glass of red wine and he poured it and handed it over to me.

The entire bar was dead. Aside from an older gentleman sitting across from me on his laptop focused intently on his writing, there wasn’t hardly anyone else there. It was something I was hoping for; somewhere quiet for me to relax that’s not my house.

“Anything you wanna eat?” asked the cute bartender.

“Yeah I think I’ll have this thank you.” I replied. He grabs my menus from me and hastily gets my order in. The wine is slowly dripping down my throat and giving me a warm, calm sensation.

“So you come here often?” the cute bartender asks.

“Yeah probably about once every couple months…or so” I answer.

“I thought I recognized you. You live around here?”

“Yeah actually. A few blocks up the road. I love this area.”

“Oh me too. It’s nice.”

“Yeah it’s nice and quiet. I love this area.”

A few minutes pass with me head first into my cell phone, catching up on all the WordPress blogs I missed when I notice the bartender standing right next to me. I look up and notice he’s placing my food down on the bar in front of me. He looks deeply into my eyes and says very softly, “Is there anything else you want that I can get for you?”

I immediately blush. I stare deep in his eyes and manage to gulp out a “Nope. I’m good.”

For a minute there, I felt like something was going on. I then proceeded to to keep reading on my phone while enjoying my food and drink. Every once in a while I’d look up to see him while his back was turned. The rest of the night played out like that. He would smile and chit chat with me and I’d turn all shades of pink. It was fun and harmless. The thing that did make it hard to leave was when I asked for the check.

“Oh…you sure you don’t want another glass of wine or anything? It’s Sunday. Gotta let loose and celebrate.”

Man that was tempting. But who knows how much farther it would’ve gone. I said no and asked for the check and left.

I guess the whole point of this is that I want to stay with my husband. I do! But I feel like whenever I get Manic I slowly tear it apart. I don’t know if that’s just me or my hypersexuality when I’m Manic. But I don’t like the way my life is. I’m so unhappy. I’m not sexually attracted to my husband anymore. I haven’t been in so long. It’s hard to think that it’ll come back.

So my questions are these:

Does sexual attraction (that passion/drive/lust) leave a marriage? Does it come back?

If I love someone to death and don’t want to leave, how can we reconcile our lack of chemistry?

Is it normal to crave other people while married? (I still haven’t stopped thinking about Mark – I had yet another dream about him last night and it’s been 5 months of no contact)

Can couples truly recover from an affair?

Please help me. We’ve tried everything from sexy self-help books to individual therapy to couples therapy to spa vacation in Las Vegas to toys AND NOTHING has worked.

I don’t want to give up on us.

 


30 thoughts on “Please I Need Marriage Advice

  1. OK, I’m only going to answer the questions that I can. And even this is just my opinion.

    First, yes, (sort of ) I believe that chemistry in marriage can ebb and flow. When you are together so much the underlying friendship is what will eventually carry a marriage through. Sometimes the sex is flowing and sometimes it’s not.

    It does however take ‘two to tango’ and if your husband is having stress issues that keep him from the bed, then that is something that needs to be dealt with. Maybe he needs a therapist. I don’t know what else is going on with him, but he may just need someone to talk to.

    Second, believe that couples can recover from an affair, but I don’t believe it’s easy at all. I have to wonder if there isn’t still something in your husband’s brain that is still focused, however slightly, on that affair. It would explain his inability and/or unwillingness to initiate.

    I would seriously consider letting your hubby get his own therapist, so that he can work through his own issues without having to tell you everything, as he would have to do in couples counseling. At the same time, I would encourage you to invite him to your therapy sessions occasionally so he can learn more about your mania and how it affects you.

    I hope something here is useful to you

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You’re probably right about him needing to see a therapist. He probably needs to work on some issues. I keep asking him over and over and he says that he is fine but I’ve know him to lie about his feelings before. Thanks for answering. I need all the help I can get.

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      1. you’re welcome. If he’s stressed, then something is going on. If he’s willing to talk to you, then that’s great. But if not, it might help him to seek out at least temporary therapy

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I agree with Leslie. I would NEVER be able to go a month without sex from my husband and I’m not the bipolar one. He is! Thats just human. Couple that with mania and its just asking for trouble. You have to be satisfied at least as much is normal. if he has health issues, thats more than understandable. however, lack of intimacy can destroy a marriage just as much as infidelity. I would strongly suggest he look into another job that isnt so stressful. whats more important your marriage or the bank account? In the mean time you have to make choices for the both of you. If it is going to be ongoing with his health issues, you guys may need to discuss how to deal with needs from that point. maybe he is also subconsciously testing you to see if you will be true? just a thought. i do think he needs therapy as well.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Amber I’m so glad you commented. It’s such shit that we are going through this point in our marriage. We are trying everything to resolve it but believe me when I say that I’m on my last thread. This is going to have a deadline for improvement. Hopefully things get better.

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  2. Yes it’s ok to crave others while married. What you do with it or want to do with it is another story.

    Once the passion goes it never comes back.

    It takes a special person or couple to recover from an affair. Sometimes it’s best to move on.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m probably the wrong one to give advice, so you can take it for what it is worth. Having lived with the manic hypersexuality, I know it takes over the control a regular person would have. I am proud of you for leaving the bar alone. It is very hard to be happy when our sexual needs are not being met, I’m speaking of those that are young like you. I know you love your husband, so you have to get a remedy soon to help your husband stress. I don’t know if his cancer is adding to the mix or not. I do know it affects your desire for him, when you don’t feel he is panting for you. Everyone needs to feel desired and when he is not pursuing you much it does a number on your desires. I think if you can talk with him and really find out what is causing this ( or maybe you already know) then you can come up with answers. I think Leslie is right about therapy for him, if he’ll go. I hope something we said may help.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The thing is I try over and over to talk with him about what it is and what he thinks might be the problem and he keeps telling me he doesn’t know. He says he will look into it. But like you said I need some kind of remedy to help his stress. We are hoping to see some improvements in his behavior once the tumor has been removed so hopefully that will help. I’m just frustrated and desperate right now. I’ll tell him to go see a temp therapist.

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      1. Sometimes they do know, take my ex for example: he let me think for years he just didn’t desire me. We were still young enough to have sex, so I started thinking it was me he did not want. Instead it was he could not get it up, instead of him saying my Dr. says my spinal stenosis is causing this. His narc ego would not admit it to me for years. So I just wanted you to get to the bottom of it and not go through years of I don’t know. In his defense, it could be physical and will be remedied soon.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Here is my 2 cents for what it is worth. I married a man I didn’t want to marry due to psychological force on his side. I stayed with him for the same reason. I hated to be touched by him and every time I went into mania and hypersexuality I sought it elsewhere. I didn’t care who, I just needed it because I wasn’t getting what I needed from my marriage. I did not cheat on him. I brought up the open marriage and gave him the same options. He had been obsessed with me and swore he wanted no one else, but it backfired and he found someone else. He left me for her and I carried on an 18 year long affair with a married man. I wanted him to leave his wife, but he wouldn’t and most don’t. No surprise there. Just over a year ago we broke up. I still find my ex husband disgusting and wouldn’t want him back. I am currently manless and thankfully my mania is under control so I don’t have to go man-hunting. I am ashamed of the number of men I have been with, but I couldn’t help myself.

    I would think getting over cheating would be hard. That was why I decided to broach the subject of the open marriage. Most men would love that situation and no one is cheating, but it is dangerous in that the final solution could be one or both finding a new partner to be with.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m trying to do that with him. It’s pretty much the last option we have. I don’t know what else we can do to save it. We both don’t want to leave so it makes sense. I remember you did that. Can you give me some advice on how you did it? We’re there rules?

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      1. Yes there were rules. All plans were to be run before the other so safety was considered and we had kids so someone had to be there. No babysitters. The object was fun, not love, but he forgot all the rules and found someone else. He simply broke the rules and started lying to me. He wanted to swing together I just wanted a companion now and then for some fun. So I had to agree to swing as well. And the biggest rule was not look for another lifetime partner and break up marriages. He broke that one big time. He broke up 2 marriages, ours and hers. I will say that even with rules, you do take a chance of falling for someone else. Mine failed. Some do it with no problems.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I am by no means an expert in marriage having only been married once and only for 3.5 years. But I can empathize with the cooling off of the desire. In my case, I know it’s because we’re in a rough patch in our relationship because his manic episode and subsequent diagnosis of bipolar has changed our relationship. Navigating the ways our relationship has changed is taking its toll because our communication is all fucked up; often we don’t understand each other the way we used to. It is so hard to find a middle ground between our needs. And our intimacy has definitely taken a hit (sex for sure but also a bunch of other little ways too).

    I don’t know if there is a way forward for us or for you and your husband. Therapy has helped me a lot and I brought up marriage counseling with my husband but I don’t think he’s done enough work with his therapist to be ready yet. My therapist tells me I have to decide how much I am willing to put up with and I think that might be good advice for you too. I don’t have an answer for myself yet. Still working on that.

    I’ve definitely been attracted to other men during my marriage and even had sex dreams about other men. I’m sure the same is true for my husband. I think it’s fine as long as no one acts on it. If going out to a bar makes you feel good and you can avoid giving in, it might be a safe way to get what you need while you’re working on finding a way for your husband and you to meet each other’s needs.

    Hang in there!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Intimacy has definitely taken the brunt of our relationship as well. I’m sorry you guys are having such a hard time so early on. I’m on year 5 and I feel like if things are this bad right now how much worse is it going to get. I’m hanging in there but by a thread. My therapist is very insightful and has helped me learn to love myself independent of my husband but my husband doesn’t have a therapist. I’ll try and talk him into doing something like that.

      Thanks for the comment.

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      1. That’s what I get from trying to type out a reply on my iPhone. Not sure why it changed me to “Loro.” 🙂

        It’s super hard when you’re trying to work on your own issues and you feel like you’re putting in more effort than your partner is.

        Do you have a good in person support group near you? (I’m sure NAMI has a list on their website http://www.namicalifornia.org.) I’ve started going to a NAMI group for family/caregivers (I’ve shared that it’s my husband who has bp) and it has given me immense perspective. And I was a little worried about it at first, but the group was just immediately so supportive and caring. You might look for a clinician-run one because those are the folks who will absolutely make sure that everyone feels safe and supported (and not judged). Online support is great, but with the in-person groups you can find out about local resources for you and your husband. It has helped me feel a lot better about my husband’s progress and it’s helped me be a little more patient.

        That all being said, my therapist has said to set a time limit for progress. Like give it six months and then decide if enough (or any) progress has been made towards the goals you have in mind. Facing a concrete amount of time rather than just an eternity can make it a little easier to get through.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I love both those ideas. I think I need to find a support group. Maybe things will be more manageable with other people to talk to. And I really like the time limit thing. I’m going to start working on them and what I hope and expect to see in a reasonable time frame.

        Thanks Lori! Lol. I was wondering who Loro was. 🙂

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  6. Lots of good advice here, so I can only reinforce a few points.

    1. You need to see a therapist.
    2. Hubby needs to see a therapist.
    3. Couples counseling.
    4. Are your meds right?

    Speaking as a husband who has had to address this similar behavior with my wife, I will say this: your mental health issues explain the behavior but never excuse it.

    Hoping it all works out for you two! Best wishes!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve been seeing a therapist for a little over a couple years now but my husband hasn’t. My meds aren’t right and haven’t been hence my last few blog posts about my med changes. I understand the difference between the explanation vs excuse, in fact I’m one of a few who advocate for that phrase. And overall, this process of marital has been going through problems for years so that’s why I’m stuck. I haven’t found any good advice on how to fix our relationship.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I cannot say there is a “fix” per say but perhaps if you and your hubby both actively participate in the “process” to make things better, then that is what matters most.

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  7. What you can control is your actions, focus on them and not your hubbies issues, get to those later. Start with you.

    Pre-diagnosis I went on a hypersexual binge, post diagnosis I have not though the desire is very much there. The difference is that now I know what I’m dealing with. Remember that it’s not real, it’ll pass.

    I say this knowing full well that we aren’t always thinking clearly, I worry about cheating on my wife again. I’m with you 100%, I search the CL regularly looking for trouble. Why?

    It’ll be ok, ethically I think if you truly can’t help but have sex w/ a stranger then you should consider some kind of intervention, if you are no longer in control. Being realistic however, be safe and discrete.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. My experience is that nothing in life every stays the same – always moving, changing, evolving. Some couples lose that chemical attraction, while some don’t. I was lucky, even though my ex-husband was an alcoholic, I was still attracted to him *eye roll * shakes head*. And in the last 3 years of my marriage when he REFUSED to have sex with me OF COURSE I naturally craved contact with other men. He isolated me so never had the opportunity to have an affair but I most CERTAINLY entertained the thought of hiring a ‘man-whore’!!! Chemistry?…. I can’t imagine a way to rekindle chemistry…. It’s a very, very important element in any relationship. Chemistry is what bonds us to other people. Its a fact, I’ve googled it ;).

    But all these questions aside, my heart breaks to say this, but I think you’ve answered your own question….”I’m not sexually attracted to my husband anymore”. Ultimately the decision is up to you. If you have both tried every avenue possible, and the same issues still persist, there is a decision that needs to be made. Sending you love because I know this can’t be easy to read ❤ ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s not easy to read at all but it’s something that I was hoping someone would mention. I’m really scared about what is going to happen to our relationship. We have been together more than 12 years with 5 of those being married. I feel like things are just not going to get better if the chemistry is gone. I really hope there is something that can happen.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh Jess! I’m so sorry. It a pain path right now for you. I was with my husband for 17 years and although I knew I needed to leave, it took me 2 years to take the step. Don’t put pressure on yourself to make a decision. Give yourself time to let your thoughts and feelings unravel until they make sense. The right moment will come and you’ll be certain of what choice to make. I lived in a marriage where my physical desires were not met, and it was intolerable. Its more than just sex, I felt neglected and controlled. If you ever need to talk to someone, I’m here for you – piecesofbipolar@yahoo.com. Remember you are in control of this situation, don’t rush into a decision, take your time, weigh up your options. I don’t know if you are able to communicate with your hubby just how dire the situation is. That gives him a chance to participate in the decision and actions to take. Big ((hugs)) for you xx

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I still crave my manic indiscretion daily and I haven’t spoken to him in 7 months. I’m afraid that’s not normal for a healthy marriage. Nor do I think the chemistry will come back but that has been my own personal experiences. I was juat diagnosed BP2 in April and we’re getting divorced. I hope the outcome you want and ultimately what is best for you, comes to pass.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s how I feel about my manic indiscretion and I haven’t contacted him in 5 months. I’m hoping things will work out for me and my husband in the best way possible. Thanks for sharing your story. I hope things work out for the both of you.

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  10. Hi Jess, no expert by any means. In fact financial settlement has just gone through the courts after the breakdown of my second marriage. Mid 40’s and divorced twice. One marriage over 10 years. I was diagnosed with bp2 after my first divorce.

    Sex has always been a craving I have worked so hard to control. I used every method I could to remain faithful whilst waiting at times for months for sex with my wife. My eyes wandered, my heart wandered, fantasies and online became tools used for relief. I’d get so bad I’d literally wait and beg for opportunities to come up. I would hide myself away knowing I was not safe, and that lead to resentment.

    Opening the door on swinging, I think once that door were open I’d never stop, purely because it would be like a pass to do as much(and as many) as I wanted. How i would explain that to my daughter, how i would not self destruct and slowly let other change or mold my personality so I got what I wanted, it would happen. In the end I would not be me. Or who I am now. I would be selfish, self serving, and yet stupidly jealous of my wife. Yet I loved my wife. How that works? I don’t know. To me, once upon a time, I believed there was a difference between sex and making love. In some ways when it comes to bipolar I think its the same. My insatiable craving for release and wanting to completely let go in an animalistic, purely instinctual way, there is no love involved.

    Meh. I’m making no sense.

    Marriage is like a knitted blanket. Its put together, and pulled apart, one stitch at a time. I don’t believe there is a fix to any marriage that doesn’t involve baby steps over a long time. Its also about being the best person you can be so as to attract your partner rather than telling them what you want. It means working on your desires after his. Easy to do whilst not manic and thinking with a clear head. Just my two cents worth.

    AND HAVING SAID ALL THAT once the chemistry is gone, there is nothing to say it won’t come back, there’s nothing to say it will. Chemistry of the minds is what will hold you together, and in my case, as soon as my wife emotionally started pulling away, that was the beginning of the end. She’d left and taken her chemistry, her mind somewhere else, given it to someone else. Permanently. Not one night stand, but, if we were to look at each other before she left, there’s no way we’d ever get together or be attracted to each other.

    So I guess, and its funny how talking about things opens your mind and brings clarity….if you saw your husband, were single and looking, would your husband catch your eyes?

    For me, single now, literally, its killing me, though the medications do help, it doesn’t stop the desires. It does slow them though. And I try to have people around me when I feel it coming on. Nighttime. Help.

    And just to add, I tried talking to two of my therapists about this, neither knew what to say. Their faces however betrayed their thoughts – “man whore”. I’ve never brought it up again, just thankful for the side effects of my current meds. Its pathetic that it’s such a integral part of diagnosis and yet once labelled with bp, that’s it. They don’t want to hear about it. I guess therapists don’t have sex….

    Hitting send and hopefully not offending.

    *disclaimer. I’m lousy with words and great at upsetting people, so apologies in advance.

    Liked by 1 person

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