Six months into their relationship, 35-year-old part time banker Simone’s patience was wearing thin. When if ever would 39-year-old reporter Miguel feel comfortable enough to propose marriage? She wanted to make sure she wasn’t dating a guy who would string her along and then quit. She thought she had done so by asking him directly and having got the answer she wanted, assumed it was just a matter of time. But there was no marriage proposal happened. Miguel spent more time away from Simone, and when he was around he was tired, played on his phone or went out with old friends. Yet he replied that he did want to marry but there were fears he had to overcome.
What is a sexless marriage? Is it lack of intercourse, or lack of any sexual contact? Is affection a part of a sexless marriage, or is touching not allowed? Maybe a sexless marriage is when there is no sexual contact and intercourse for more than a year! Is it a lack of libido , or is it intercourse that is conducted as a ritual or routine duty?
Most of us grow up with myths about what love is and ought to be like if it was real and trustworthy. We get it from fairy tales, love songs, country music, movies, folk lore and hearing our friends and family talk about their longings. We pay attention to the "happy ever after" ending in stories and dream that we too could be valuable and worthwhile enough to inspire that kind of devotional love. But inevitably we get disappointed, heartbroken, betrayed, abandoned, or have to share that love with others. We can't stand it and believe that it is not normal. Something is either wrong with the person we love, or something is wrong with us!
Is it an affair? NO Is it something shady from your past? NO Is it your past identity? NO Is it something about your parental or cultural heritage? N0 So what are these worms that eat away at your relationship, called secrets?
Do you go to work each day feeling a bit guilty that you spent a few extra minutes in bed cuddling with your partner? Perhaps you get anxious on your way home from work, knowing that you stayed late to finish a project or deal with customer service problems. It's hard for you to give equal weight to your job and your marriage when they both mean a great deal to you. You don't like the feeling of having to take time from one part of your life to give to another, and it's a conflict that you can't seem to resolve. You know in your gut that your marriage is the key foundation that sustains you and makes you feel secure. So how can you make the time you spend with your partner special and free of work and other intrusions?
Gordon was attracted to his wife because she appeared independent, competent, able to handle his anxieties as well as offer comfort and security. After he married her, he discovered that she wanted to be taken care of, play and enjoy her pets - his world crashed. He felt that he had lost the object of his dreams, the security he thought he had garnered, and the tender care that he believed was on tap. The shock of finding out that the tables had been turned on him made him furious and scared. But he didn't dare talk about it to his wife Maria. It was too scary a proposition.
If you have ever felt envious in the tiniest bit you will know how it can eat your soul alive and make you unavailable for an emotionally intimate relationship. You will be so filled with envious rage that others have what you should have, deserve and have been deprived of that there is no room for anything else. On the other hand if you have felt the envious rage of a loved one thrown your way, you may be blindsided by its force and intensity. You may not be able to see where the rage is coming from, let alone understand that there is envy behind it, because to you there is no reason for it. Either way it's important that envy doesn't destabilize your relationship. Without recognition and attention to reducing it, envy shows itself in aggressive ways, turning an accepting love into one of possession.
Overwhelmed with the prospect of having to manage the finances of the household, thirty-three-year-old Andy gave his power over to his thirty-two-year-old wife who was a whiz at it. He enjoyed the lack of responsibility and the chance not to have to worry about money. UNTIL his wife complained bitterly that he was not pulling his weight. He would get involved for a short time to appease her, but soon drifted back into his old ways until the next time she exploded. Sometimes he acted like a robot not to feel the shame and blame and other times he was passive aggressive, playing the martyr to her abuser roles. What if Andy chose one or more of the healthier ways of owning and exerting his power so that he didn't have to give it away and get it back in the less healthy ways?
Pinning you down to score points Remember those fights when your partner brought up all the 'nasty' things you said and did, as if they were being read from a score sheet? That's often how loved ones track each others sins of omission and sins of commission. Fired up with indignation and fury when there is tension between you, they mentally read from that score sheet to bury you in one fell swoop, so that they can feel vindicated. Perhaps you do the same thing without knowing it. Maybe you too make mental notes of the things you wanted your partner to do and felt slighted when you were let down. It's likely that you can predict the moment your partner is going to go 'off' on a tirade, bringing up all the garbage from the past to make you feel like the devil incarnate. Ever wondered why you and your partner relate in this way?
One of the most common fears people have in romantic relationships is about being needy. It arouses shame, followed by a massive attempt to compensate. Often it takes the form of becoming totally self-sufficient to the point of avoiding all social contact. The result: isolation, lack of emotional intimacy, leading to insecurity and depression – which in turn makes you more ‘needy.’