A Reader Writes…
I am a 31 year old homemaker with a two year old and a four year old child. My husband and I have been married for 7 years. I just finished reading I Love You but I’m Not in Love With You.
My husband is very stressed with both his career and his home life, and after I caught him in an inappropriate relationship with a female co-worker, he agreed to see a doctor.
He started taking antidepressants and anxiety medication, and I thought things were on the mend. Then came the bomb… He loves me, but things don’t feel the same as they used to, and he’s not in love with me any longer.
It broke my heart, but I’m glad he told me instead of holding it in. We just started marriage counseling, and though his first reaction was to just leave us, he has agreed to work on things and has been acting a little less distant.
My question is about sex. He is still attracted to me, says he loves me, and still wants to have sex all the time. We have always had a very active sex life, and it has been our constant through everything, however, at this stage, its very confusing for me.
On one hand I am trying to keep it together and get over the shock of hearing those words, and then he’s all over me and acting as if nothing has happened when it comes to that area. Is this healthy? Normal?
I don’t want to cut our strongest connection for fear of making the distance between us even greater, but I don’t know how I should feel about our current arrangement, either.
Is it normal to have lots of sex after discovering an affair?
The boost to your sex-life is quite normal. We always fancy what we don’t have (or fear we may lose) rather than what we hold firmly in our hands.
However, I think you want something more than sex, like flirting, romance and to feel desired for who you are rather than just a willing sex partner. What would help you achieve this goal? Compliments, a nice gesture in the day, being taken out? Could you talk to your husband about this?
I also find it is helpful for couples—after infidelity—to discuss the differences between “having sex” (which is often what happens in an affair) and making love (which is about a connection with a whole person, not a fantasy or specific body parts)? How do you see the differences? How could you have more love in your love-making?
I’m concerned about his stress and anxiety. This normally comes from not expressing your emotions, but suppressing them. So I would be interested to discover if he can disagree with you or have another opinion e.g. on how the children are brought up.
I call this being assertive and explain it in My Wife Doesn’t Love Me Anymore and Resolve Your Differences. I’d also like you to read How Can I Ever Trust You Again? as this will explain about the recovery after an affair.