"I don’t want to accept being a nun in my marriage"


This question is about sex in a marriage where I am choosing to honour my agreement to be monogamous. My husband and I almost never have sex because he doesn’t want to (once in the past two years, initiated–almost pushed–by me). It is unclear whether he is attracted to me or not, or whether it’s ongoing stress about his health, work, family, or other reasons that he does not choose to share with me. I think most people my age would be surprised that my husband would not want to have sex with me based on my attractiveness (ie I have normal BMI and often make an effort to show up with how I look).

In a recent coaching call on business, Brooke said that she takes responsibility for customers buying her products:

A: do all the things to make product irresistible
R: many people buy product

Does this line of thinking apply to sex? Can I put having sex with my husband in the R line?

A: do all the things to make self irresistible
R: husband will have sex with me, at least occasionally

Obviously it’s different scouring for a want match among millions of potential buyers vs. looking for a want match with one person.

I have listened to the want match podcast and Brooke’s recent coaching call on Connection, in which she talked a lot about want matches. I agree that it’s great to get needs met outside of the marriage, but sex is obviously different for those who have chosen to agree to monogamous marriage. Brooke even referred to her own marriage and alluded to a slight mismatch between her and her husband’s preference for frequency of sex. But that is different than two people agreeing to have a monogamous sexual relationship for the rest of their lives, then one person chooses to not have sex with the other person.

I am willing to do things husband wants to do to connect (talk, watch TV, shop for and cook food, drink alcohol, listen to music, travel), but none of those create the feeling of connection for me that I want. I am willing to look outside my marriage to get many of my connection needs met (mountain hiking, talking about blogging, have conversations where I am being more vulnerable, socialize in groups of people). But sex is genuinely a way that I want to connect with a love partner–it has always been that way for me. I thought we had a want match in that area when we married 8 years ago, but his desire to have sex with me seemingly stopped a few months after we married.

UM:
C: humans in a marriage
T: I’ll never have sex again
F: desperate
A: work on being more physically attractive, look for evidence that I am not attractive, buffer, occasionally express anger and resentment to husband, initiate “the talk” about what is going on with sex about once every six months (husband avoids conversation and doesn’t express what is going on for him), try to accept being celibate, contemplate leaving him, contemplate having an affair (but I do want to connect with my husband specifically), ruminate, make excuses for husband’s disinterest in sex with me, people please husband
R: need not met

C: humans in a marriage
T: I don’t want to accept being a nun in my marriage
F: indignant
A: work on being more physically attractive, look for evidence that I am not attractive, buffer, occasionally express anger and resentment to husband, initiate “the talk” about what is going on with sex about once every six months (husband avoids conversation and doesn’t express what is going on for him), try to accept being celibate, contemplate leaving him, contemplate having an affair (but I do want to connect with my husband specifically), ruminate, make excuses for husband’s disinterest in sex with me, people please husband
R: no sex

I realize that desperation and indignation tend not to be attractive, but I have no idea of what an intentional model would look like here.

IM:
C: humans in a marriage
T: ??
F: ??
A: ??
R: sex with husband at least once a month

Any help you can offer is appreciated.

PS: I would love it if you could relay to Brooke a request to do a podcast (or content for SCS) about sex. I can’t be the only one who is looking for help with this.