Dear Dr. G.,
I want to leave my family. I have two boys ages 26 and 20. I love them dearly. I married for the first time in 2005 to a good guy. The only area we are not compatible in, and never was, is sex. I married him knowing that because I felt there were more important things than just sex. It was hard for me to get married because I had come a long way and was independent.
Over the past couple of years I have resented everything. I first became a mother at 19, so you see I never had any ME time. Yes that was my choice. Obviously one I knew nothing about. Now I resent responsibility. My husband and sons and 2 dogs do nothing but make messes. I am constantly cleaning. I get enraged over it. When everyone is at work I feel relieved and peaceful. I get anxious when they are all due back home at the end of the day.
I am constantly yelling at the dogs. They have ruined rugs and furniture and i cant stand the mess. I do love them. I didn’t always feel this animosity towards them and now it’s a daily thing. I constantly day dream about running away and having my OWN place, to myself with NO ONE else. I hate it here. I hate my sexless marriage. I hate the cleaning. I don’t even feel like a woman anymore.
Recently I discovered that my husband is secretly into porn. He says its an addiction….? I don’t get it. That’s not the shocker though, it’s the fact that he NEVER initiates sex with me (and never did). He is christian and used the ’God wants us to wait’ excuse before we got married. Then when we were married it was rare. I don’t think we’ve had sex 10 times in the ten yrs we’ve been together. I resent him greatly for that. Other than the sex he is a great person and respects me. I am losing feelings for him, and usually that signals the beginning of the end for me.
Right now i cannot financially afford to take care of myself and that makes me even angrier, because I am stuck here. I look around the house and feel like a useless maid. I am about to lose it. I am at a loss. I have no family. I do have a lot to be thankful for, and i know some people have it worse. I try to be happy but the resentment creeps back in. I don’t know what to do. Sometimes I think about ending it all. Yes I am depressed.
A Distraught Wife & Mother
Dear Wife and Mom
I am very happy that you wrote to me. I can certainly understand why you are at your wit’s end. You are exhausted and depleted and are clearly not feeling nurtured or appreciated. I have several suggestions for you.
1. You must talk to your husband and let him know that the lack of sex in the marriage is an issue for you. Sex can be a great connector in a marriage.It is unclear why your husband is getting his sexual gratification from porn rather than from his partner. Perhaps your husband has sexual anxiety and/or does not understand that you are feeling deprived and distressed.
2. I strongly suggest that you get into individual therapy. Of course you are depressed. You are feeling unacknowledged and trapped. Your thoughts about ending it all are concerning. I would like you to see a therapist who helps you find ways to modify old habits and patterns so that you feel more hopeful about your life and life choices. Suicide should not be on your list of problem-solving options.
3. You have many issues with your husband and describe feeling overwhelmed and deprived. I understand that. Get a recommendation for a good marital therapist and get started immediately. In marital therapy you and your husband should talk about what you both need from each other so that you don’t simply feel like you are stuck in the house like a prisoner cleaning up messes.
4. Begin to work on sharing the household responsibilities. It is absolutely not fair that you are taking care of all of the household responsibilities when there are other adults in the household. Begin to delegate tasks.
5. You are right. We all need ME time. Think about what you used to enjoy doing before you became a mother and a wife and try to resume these activities. We all need time to get refreshed and rejuvenated.
I wish you luck and love. Please write back to me during the next few months