September 30, 2014

Ask Me Anything: On Leaving a Failing Relationship & When Your Partner Wants More Sex Than You. {Weekly Advice Column}

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Eleditor’s note: This website is not designed to, and should not be construed to, provide medical advice, professional diagnosis, opinion or treatment to you or any other individual, and is not intended as a substitute for medical or professional care and treatment. For serious.

Dear Elephants,

Welcome to this weeks Ask Me Anything, where no question is out of bounds.

To submit questions for next week, email me at [email protected] or private message me on Facebook.

I look forward to hearing from you!


Dear Erica,

A  couple of years back I met a nice man and after a year or so of dating sold my house , gave up my job and moved with him to the USA as his assignment in my country was complete. I was eligible for permanent resident status so it was like let’s give ourselves this chance. 

From arrival it has been just one thing after another—visa problems, his lack of money, I had a bout I of depression. I have lost a lot of my savings coming here as wasn’t able to work for a year in total but have tried to pay my way. We bought a house which has not gone to plan and now I am feeling defeated. I won’t inject any more cash into this life and I can’t view my partner the way I used to. 

I was unhappily married for many years and divorced spent ten years as a single parent and full time worker, it was hard but my daughter has moved out, works and is in a good place in her life back home. I struggled for a long time but the last few years of single life had found me in a very good place. I liked my life and was very happy, didn’t love my job but then how many people do? 

Now I have just enough money to buy a very small house back home and I am seriously thinking I should pack up, admit this relationship is best let go of and try and rebuild. I don’t want to hurt my partner he is a nice man, but sadly I really feel not the right man for me. 

I know he thinks maybe we can get back to where we were but I don’t know and frankly I can’t seem to even start on trying. 

Help please.

Unhappy in America

Dear Unhappy,

Sometimes our best laid plans simply do not materialize and we have to cut our losses and move on.

It sounds to me as if you have given this relationship every reasonable chance of working out, and it just isn’t happening. Your decision not to “inject any more cash into this life”, and the fact that you “can’t view your partner the way [you] used to” pretty much tells the whole story. If you refuse to make any more emotional or financial investment in your relationship, it is definitely time to move on– the only thing that’s slowing you down is guilt.

Do both you and your guy a favor and end this as quickly, kindly and completely as possible while you still have enough money and energy left to go back to your home country and start over once again.


Dear Erica,

I have a real problem. I’ve been married to my husband for over 12 years and I love him a lot. I’ve never been that interested in sex, but I thought it was just me and I was fine with it—just kind of went along with my husband when he wanted sex because that’s what seemed right.

Now I’m suddenly feeling very resentful that I have to spend so much time doing something I really don’t want to do. I know sex is important to him, but what about what I want? I dread when he starts indicating that he wants to have sex, and then I feel so bad because I know it’s only natural. It’s gotten to the point where I avoid him, and he knows there is something wrong but I just can’t keep pretending anymore!

If I tell him how I feel, he is going to take it personally, and I don’t blame him. I would too!

I just want to live a peaceful life with my husband and not feel like I’m trapped in this place where he’s always wanting something I can’t give. I feel like I’m failing as a wife.

What can I do?


Dear No,

Every person in the world has their own sexual needs and preferences, and if we are lucky, we end up with someone who is basically on the same page.

Countless others of us, however, suffer as you (and undoubtedly your husband) are suffering from the blameless fact that you both want different things in the bedroom.

Your big mistake is that you haven’t even given your husband a chance to weigh in on this.

Sit down with him in a neutral place, tell him what’s on your mind. It is likely that he already knows there is a problem and doesn’t feel good about it either. He may welcome the chance to look for mutually viable solutions. Even if he doesn’t, you know you have tried and you can move forward from there.

Because the rest of your marriage sounds solid, I would look at this as a work in progress. Instead of succumbing to feelings of dread and guilt, resolve to let love make you brave and assume you will find a solution one way or another.

A couples therapist specializing in sex would be extremely helpful. You might ask your husband to join you in seeing one, or if he’s not interested, go on your own.



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Editor: Renée Picard

Photo: Wiki commons 


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