My Husband Didn’t Touch Me For Two Years… And It Nearly Destroyed My Self-Esteem
03 Mar 2017
There we were, two warm bodies lying next to each other in the dark. Only that his back was turned to me. I hesitantly reached out and touched his back. He was still. Encouraged, I started stroking his back, but he flinched away from me. “Go to sleep Parvati,” he mumbled. I didn’t want to give up so easily, so I spoke up. “Tomorrow is Sunday, we can spend some quality time together…” He got the hint but his reply crushed me. “Please I’m not in the mood tonight. Let’s plan it for some time later.” I felt a familiar shame and embarrassment take over my being. I should be used to this, of course. Milind had avoided sex with me for two years, and it looked like the dry spell was nowhere close to ending.
When we first got married, Milind couldn’t get enough of me. He seemed to be enchanted by everything about me, and I just lapped it up. I felt beautiful, desirable and sexy… even though I had to fake a headache a few times when he got a little too excited. Then, we decided to get pregnant, and slowly, everything started changing.
The first few months were fun and filled with the promise of a bright future, but month after month went by and there was not a single positive pregnancy test to show for it. After about six months, we were worried enough to go in for tests but the doctors detected nothing wrong other than a slightly low sperm count. I became more determined than ever to have a baby and became addicted to tracking my ovulation with one of those predictor kits you get at the chemist’s. As soon as the ovulation stick gave a positive result I’d ask Milind to drop whatever he was doing and have sex with me.
He never seemed to have a problem with this, but when I finally fell pregnant a year after starting to try, he said something strange: “I’m so glad this has happened. I don’t think I could bear one more session.” However, I was so happy at the positive news that I never dwelt on his words. I had other things to think about.
As the months went by, my pregnancy progressed exactly as it should. My hair shone, my skin glowed and even the extra weight suited me. However, Milind showed no interest in getting intimate with me. I figured it was because he was afraid of hurting the baby. One day I even said to him, “Nothing will happen to the baby, you know. The doctor says it’s safe.” He looked, to be honest, like he was going to puke. “No,” he said, “It just doesn’t feel right to do it with a baby in there.” I felt hurt and rejected, but I sort of understood. It did seem a bit weird to have a baby so close to all the action!
And then the baby was born. We were happy and exhausted and overwhelmed all at the same time, and sex was nowhere on our minds. However after the eight-month mark or so, when the baby was weaned and started sleeping through the night, I became actively interested in reviving our intimacy as a couple.
That’s when I got a rude shock.
Milind made excuses to get away every time I tried to ‘seduce’ him. He was always too busy, too stressed, too tired. My anger and resentment started bubbling up. I also started feeling unattractive and self-conscious about my stretch marks and weight gain. Maybe now that I had borne is child, I was no longer desirable enough for him. It was eating away at me. I longed for him to show that he was still attracted to me, but while he was friendly he treated me like I was a sibling.
That night in the bedroom, as he lay there with his back turned, I felt I had reached my breaking point. I had to speak up or I knew we’d risk losing our relationship altogether. “We need to talk,” I said. He refused to turn around. “Can’t we do it tomorrow?” I said a firm no. I said, “You haven’t touched me for two years. If you no longer see me as a love, maybe we need to reconsider our relationship.”
That shocked him into sitting up.
“Well?” I asked. “Am I too ugly for you? Is there another woman in your life? What is it? I need to know.”
By now I was crying and all my hurt and anger was pouring out.
He put his arm around me, but it took him a long time to speak. “I’m sorry Parvati, it’s just that I feel so stressed when I think about sex. While we were trying to conceive I kept feeling you felt cheated because of my sperm count and you kept trying to make me perform… it just got so difficult. I don’t know what to do….”
I looked at him, “Are you saying it’s my fault? Couldn’t you have spoken up then? I would have understood! Do you know how awful I’ve been feeling with this rejection? It’s been TWO years!”
He looked crushed. “I don’t know what to do. I don’t think I can ever be man enough for you…”
I put my arms around him too and we just lay down beside each other until we drifted off to sleep.
No, we did not have sex that night or the next, but we did make an appointment with a couples’ therapist at ePsyClinic to work through our issues. His hurt and my hurt had created a barrier between us that we couldn’t hope to cross on our own.
We have just had a few sessions of therapy so far, and while we haven’t been intimate yet, there’s a new lightness between us.
Just five minutes ago, he complimented me on my new sari and kissed my neck.
He hasn’t done that in two years.
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Tags: #Sex #Intimacy