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GoodDay posted 5/18/2014 20:58 PM

I am about 2 months out from d day, and still dealing with a lot of emotional struggles. But perhaps the greatest of these is frustration over our sex life now. Before this all happened, I thought we had a healthy sex life together. But since it happened, I am struggling with an unhealthy combination of sexual obsession and phobia. I know a lot of this is stemming from my lack of self-confidence as a result of all this. I feel very insignificant, undesirable, worthless, and really think mostly what I need is validation, but it is manifesting itself in me by me fantasizing about sex almost constantly. And not just sex, but lusty, steamy (even weird) sex, full of passion. I guess I know, at least I think I know, the lines she crossed with the other man, and the ways they were intimate, and it was pretty much every way we've been intimate with each other. Now I think a big part of me wants to go further with her, to feel like I've had her in ways noone else has, make it feel like she's mine again. I've never really had a weird sex drive before, so I feel like I've turned into a pervert for feeling this way. At the same time, I am tortured by images and thoughts of them having this steamy affair, which stifles me from being able to show her desire. And I think she is either ashamed of things, or just doesn't have a sex drive towards me. She acts very loving towards me, but not very turned on by me. I feel loved, but not wanted, not desired, and I'm sure their relationship was full of lust and desire, as most new relationships are. In fact, before I found out about the affair, I felt like our sex life was pretty good, and we were comfortable trying new things and having fun together. Now any intimacy is nostalgic cuddling and talk of love. I appreciate love, but I think right now I need to feel her lust.
I saw the other man very recently for the first time, and he was a very big, built guy. It made me picture their sex, with him tossing her around and holding her during (things I couldn't physically do), and knocked me back several notches on the recovery timeline. My sexual frustration has probably tripled since finding out how built he is, because I feel there's no way I can compete, and bigger frame in my mind equals better endowed, which makes me feel insignificant in that way too, also something I've never struggled with before now.
I feel like my wife is trying very hard to make me feel validated, but I read once that in love women need mostly emotional connection, where men need mostly sex. This is now true more than ever for me, and I think her idea of patching it up is cuddling and telling me how much she loves me and needs me, and I just want to feel objectified by her. But my lack of confidence and self-esteem, another thing I'm not used to feeling, prevents me from being able to talk about, much less, initiate any kind of passionate encounter. I also feel too ashamed of how I feel, of myself in general, to really try to express this to her.
I really want to feel a connection to her again, like we used to have, even better.. but constantly comparing myself to this other man, and comparing our love life to what I imagine theirs was is polluting my mind more and more everyday, turning me into an insecure ball of bitter emotion. This sexual tension didn't start as big as it is now, but going unaddressed and especially after seeing him it has gotten worse and worse, to where I feel like a creepy pervert that can't be a man with my love life. Somebody somewhere please tell me this is normal! Would love something to read written from an expert on this subject, because it is a very real struggle for me, and at this point I think one of the biggest obstacles to getting back to good.

phoenix2015 posted 5/18/2014 22:15 PM

Sorry Goodday,
Everything you are saying sounds perfectly normal. Your assessment on the different thinking of men and women sounds spot on too. It sounds like intellectually you understand what is happening, but emotionally it is difficult to work through.
As a BS, the feelings of not being good enough logically explain why our WS looks elsewhere, but with TIME we slowly begin to see that it had nothing to do with us. Knowing this is one thing, but fully accepting this is taking more effort.

kansas1968 posted 5/18/2014 22:29 PM

Has she been tested for STD's and have you? We have had much the same problem. He didn't seem to be able to maintain during sex and also didn't seem much interested. I was devastated (again) because as you know, our self-esteem is at land's end!

It turned out partly to be because he had picked up a case of HPV from his darling girl and was terrified to tell me and was terrified that I would contract it. He is still fighting with the outbreak but I feel less threatened when he seems uninterested. I think it is very hard for him emotionally also. He feels guilty and that I really don't love him. Very complicated I think. At our age I think it will be OK. Sex not such a big deal, but if this continues for you guys, you might want to get a good sex therapist. Sex is certainly where we rebuild that bond and intimacy.

littlemiss1 posted 5/19/2014 04:52 AM

im only dday 3 weeks so im pretty sure i have loads more shit coming my way.

im 8 1/2 months pregnant too, so finding my husband has cheated on me i thought would put me off sex forever.

however it hasnt, i want him to want me.i guess in a way i want to reclaim him as mine.
to prove to myself i can please him more,or better

i understand where your coming from but also remember that the movies we play in our head are so much worse then what it was probably like.

we think the worst, we think it was better sex, longer lasting, passionate, better in bed than what we are.
the reality ,was it??
i mean can you have great sex when your living in guilt and know what your doing is so wrong.
personally the best sex ive had was with my husband because of the love we had.
he made me feel special, hot and loved.
ive never cheated but i cant imagine that a quick fumble could compare to sex with my husband.
sex is good but its even better when someone knows you inside out,that takes a long time to discover can you find that in a quick A?

maybe just tell your ww how you feel write it down get it out in the open?

devasted30 posted 5/19/2014 05:19 AM

This is soooooo normal. Read the book, After the Affair by Janis Abrahms Spring. I'm reading it now and it explains a lot. Maybe it can help you. BUT, you need to talk to your W S about this. Do not let the lines of communication close. Talk about anything and everything -this included. You need what you need to heal. I am sure that the sex was nothing like you imagine it was. If we are to believe most WS on here, they pretty we'll say it wasn't the best, in fact, no way near it. Good luck.

Gman1 posted 5/19/2014 07:25 AM

GoodDay, What you are feeling/thinking is absolutely normal and I believe most BS's feel the same way or at least experience very similar thoughts as you. I know that I did as well. Unfortunately, these thoughts are only one of many that you will likely have in the coming months. For me, it was one step in the process of healing from the trauma. In your head you most likely have assumed that since he is "built" that somehow he may be better in bed. Your mind will play cruel games on yourself. Most likely, their escapades were awkward and fast and were nothing like what your mind has conjured up. He may not have been good at all.

As others have mentioned, now is the time to strike while the iron is hot. Take all that you have written and talk about every detail of this with your WW. Explain how this hurts you so badly and explain how it makes you feel insecure and that you need her repeated reassurance. This will help you both to reconnect and it should draw her closer to you.

I could have written 90% of your post about myself after my WW's A. I talked to her about it several times at length. I asked many questions and told her how I felt like I was her second choice and many other things that you have written. As it turned out, the OM wasn't all that I made him out to be in my mind. And our conversations about all this brought us closer and helped in our R process. I hate that we had to ever had to have this conversation as a result of an A because it really sucks. But you opening up to her will allow yourself, in her eyes, to be vulnerable and will draw her closer to you. Hopefully she will be very understanding and help you through this. It is awful that the person who is responsible for so much pain is also the only person who can help you heal but that is the way it works. This sucks too!

BetrayedbyONS posted 5/19/2014 10:15 AM

Good Day – I’m almost six months out from d-day and went through the exact same thing. Like your situation, my WW’s OM was bigger than me (much taller and has me by about 100 lbs) and better endowed (which is saying something since I’m no small fry). Although our situations differ in that my WW had a ONS and your WW had an affair that lasted several months, the mind movies and impact to the sex life are that same.

Like you I struggled with feelings of inadequacy. In the first weeks when my WW and I talked through the details of what lead up to her ONS and what she liked so much about the sexual encounter one of the hardest things to hear was that the encounter was so enjoyable because the OM was just so physically different from me (he is 6’3” vs my 5’7”, he had big strong hands, he had a short scruffy beard and a super short “buzz” haircut, etc.). I thought to myself, “no matter what I do I cannot physically change who I am.” How can I compete with “differentness” if that is what she craves?

Like you, I had a strong urge to have wild passionate sex and satisfy my WW in ways that she never had experienced before. This coincided with the hyper-bonding in the first six weeks or so. Also like you, I sometimes had mental images of my WW and the OM which would negatively impact my sexual performance, but through pure force of will I would continue the session only switching to some alternative activity to attempt to bring my WW to orgasm. After several episodes like this I started in a downward spiral of self doubt in my sexual ability. My fears and anxiety grew as I then thought that my WW had even more of a reason to cheat again since I could not satisfy her needs.

The turnaround occurred for me when my wife initiated a conversation one evening as we were going to bed. This was on a night were we would not normally have had sex because it was late in the evening and we both had to get up early the next morning. Although we were both tired, and I knew she would have preferred to sleep, she stated she wanted to talk because she could sense how sad I was and she felt that I was withdrawing from her. I shared my fears and concerns and she stated simply that she thought I was too focused on satisfying her, and the next time we have sex she wanted me to focus on myself. She wanted to be there for “my” sexual pleasure. The next morning I awoke about 30 minutes before the alarm was supposed to go off and initiated sex and we had a short (40 minutes) long passionate encounter.

Since that time I would say the hyper-bonding has ended and we have shifted into more of a routine, at least so far as frequency of sex. (We have two small children so we are used to, and comfortable with, scheduling time for sex.) We are still dealing with issues in our sex life, but mostly now tied to her feelings of guilt and remorse.

It sounds to me like your WW has yet to feel the “deep” feelings of guilt and remorse. Are you in counseling? Is she in IC? If you feel you can have a calm, rational discussion about this with your wife I recommend you share your concerns with her. She needs to be able to empathize with what you are feeling. If you are committed to R you will need her help to rebuild your sex life.

The tricky part is getting her to recognize your concerns and elicit her help with dealing with them (i.e. try something new and exciting to put some passion in your sex life) without causing her to feel so guilty for what she did to you that she cannot really “connect” with you while being sexual. IMHO you need to find a way to meet both of your needs right now (her need for the emotional connection and your need for the physical passion and excitement). The only way to achieve this is to be able to talk and both recognize what your needs are. Once I had that talk with my WW, I shifted from trying to fulfill any of her remaining fantasies to simply giving her lots of physical non-sexual attention (which was what she was craving). This eventually led to her regaining the ability to really connect emotionally (at least more often) when we do have sex so that she can really enjoy the experience and that led to us trying so new and exciting things.

GoodDay posted 5/19/2014 10:16 AM

Thanks guys, we actually ended up talking about this last night and already am feeling better about things!

2married2quit posted 5/19/2014 10:49 AM

You're only 2months out. Understood completely. I'll share this with you to help, but I too went through a period of hyper sex with her. It was daily. Kinky, dirty, everything. I guess psychologically you want to take your spouse back or something. In fact, I think part of it made me happy because of the chemical release in the brain sex does and got me through the hurt and pain of infidelity. But as soon as her period came, I'd feel horrible again. It turned to a a drug. In fact, it got me to even justify what she did, understand and even get turned on at times by what she did. How F'd up is THAT? I was a mess.

Slowly but surely the hyper bonding simmered and reality started to set in. 2yrs later, I'm in a whole different place. I have a hard time kissing her. We do have sex and it helps lots but the pain and the imagery is still there.

Mac4 posted 5/20/2014 07:24 AM


What you are felling, although unpleasant, is normal. I think I could have written almost everything in your post about myself. I very much recognize that I want to be desired by my wife, I want her to lust for me. But the reality is that we are nowhere close to healing in this area. Just like you stated, my wife can cuddle and hold hands and express her affection with touch. But sexually we are not recovering. Hopefully, time will bring healing in this area. Currently, she just feels guilty and tells me she is "confused" about her sexuality and has no sexual interest. But knowing she gave herself to the AP sexually in ways that we had never before shared has been very difficulty for me to reconcile.

With time and effort, hopefully through reconnecting emotionally we can heal our sexual intimacy and hopefully you will too. Best of luck!

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