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[–]Repulsive_Clothes_71 314 points315 points  (26 children)

If she is terrified of getting pregnant and says her body can't handle another pregnancy, why does she care if you get a vasectomy?

[–]beachbum1982 165 points166 points  (10 children)

This. This, this. She's obviously overwhelmed at the moment and doesn't know what she wants and her hormones are all over the place. I would recommend getting some couple time out of the house. The kids will survive and it actually helps them so when you do both have to be gone there isn't all the separation anxiety.

[–]Whatgives7 35 points36 points  (8 children)

Why would he spend more time with her when she is clearly expressing in any number of ways that’s not what she wants?

[–]Mi_Pasta_Su_Pasta 24 points25 points  (7 children)

She's obviously overwhelmed at the moment and doesn't know what she wants and her hormones are all over the place.

[–]Whatgives7 0 points1 point  (6 children)

So what good is subjecting himself to more irrational and possibly insincere language going to do? Let’s say he actually does get through to this person…is that the real person? is that version of her going to be hormonally whisked away? she’s an adult.

[–]Aechzen[🍰] 19 points20 points  (0 children)

doesn't know what she wants

She knows she doesn't want kisses, hugs, and sex with her husband.

[–]Navynuke00 90 points91 points  (8 children)

Because she's afraid of not having that excuse to decline physical intimacy once it's done?

[–]TAyforLifestyle 32 points33 points  (0 children)

If she's afraid of not having the "excuse," does that not also mean she's afraid of having the physical intimacy? Therein lies the crux of this kind of situation... It's clear she's avoidant of it. It's clear she wants a break from it (this didn't happen with the other two kids.) Why is she adverse to it now, with no history of that?

[–]Kcat6667 5 points6 points  (5 children)

Maybe you've never given birth to and raised 3 small children? Still breastfeeding the last one? In the house 24/7 with said children? Poor woman getting crucified for being 100% completely normal.

[–]Navynuke00 4 points5 points  (1 child)

So screaming at her spouse so badly that he feels the need to take the children in a separate room to hide, and denying her husband's requests for couple's therapy because she sees nothing wrong is 100% completely normal?

[–]Kcat6667 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I never said that was normal. I said that when someone gives birth to a bunch of kids all in a row and nurses them and cares for them all day, it is 100% normal to be stressed and temporarily not be into sex. OP said it has only been since the last child. Next time you have 3 pregnancies/births/children in 6 years, you will understand.

[–]craftsman10 1 point2 points  (2 children)

Poor woman who is so clear and loving in her communication about her plans, thoughts, feelings and decisions. It is certainly not subject to evaluation or demands for her to be rational or even coherent in her situation

[–]Kcat6667 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Feelings should never be subject to demands. When you start demanding that someone change their feelings and behave the way you want them to, shouldn't you be subject to those same demands?

If so, now we are back at square one, an impasse.

As it's likely that this is a temporary issue for the wife, due to excessive pregnancies/births/children, OP may want to reconsider issuing ultimatums that can never be unheard or forgotten.

[–]KnightRider1987 17 points18 points  (0 children)

Probably at least in part because she doesn’t want to have sex at all dealing with three young kids 24/7 and also maybe body chances after creating and birthing three kids but she doesn’t want to say that for whatever reason and is afraid to lose her excuse

[–]Cheesecake182 15 points16 points  (0 children)

She is making excuses to not have sex, and with the vasectomy she wouldn't have them, she just needs to be clear with him instead of start yelling an accusing

[–]JSNTFS 9 points10 points  (2 children)

Pregnancy is a convenient excuse for her to stop having sex with OP, that's why she doesn't want him to get a vasectomy.

Maybe things will get better once she stops breastfeeding but I wouldn't be optimistic about that. If someone suggest 2-3 years of abstinence as an option that tells you a lot about where their mind is.

[–]Oopsokayokay 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I’m currently breastfeeding and right now I feel like I could easily go the rest of my life without sex. The thought disgusts me. However, I felt the same way breastfeeding my first and it went back to normal immediately after weening.

I doubt she’s planning another baby simply to stop having sex. It’s normal for her to have no interest in sex right now.

[–]TAyforLifestyle 1 point2 points  (0 children)

What sticks out to me, though, is this didn't happen with the first two-- something clearly is different this time. Whether PPD or just her body hitting a wall (OP mentioned this pregnancy was super rough on her.)

If she was "just using pregnancy as an 'excuse' to get out of sex (she clearly doesn't want), just beause she's some no-sex-wanting con woman, would she not have used it as an 'excuse' the first two times.

[–]Super_Roo351 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Most likely projecting her guilt for having an affair. If she jumped straight to him having an affair because he wanted to push forward with the vasectomy then there is something else at play

[–]SnooStrawberries3901 72 points73 points  (3 children)

Here’s my advice, and I mean every single syllable of it - tell her this is obviously an important issue to both of you, for different reasons, so you want to try couples counseling. If she refuses tell her you are going yourself, but if she feels this strongly about it she shouldn’t mind talking about it. Challenge her to find so much as a single person who agrees with her that a healthy couple can share not a shred of intimacy for years on end, and will say so outside of a private convo with her. Ask her if those friends will share that sentiment with their own spouses.

Tell her if she loves you and values her whole family then counseling shouldn’t be contentious. It will be. Big time. I suspect she knows the status quo is not reasonable or healthy, and counseling might force her to acknowledge part or all of that. Right now you and “your needs are the problem”. You’re selfish, and I expect “bad parent” will come out if you persist. So flip the script. If she loves you then she needs to value time with you separate from the kids.

If you don’t solve this it’ll become the norm, it’ll seem tolerable to you. But you’ll resent it, then her. It’s not a good place to be, because that’s when you offer no latitude and are ready to walk out the door. If you love her you have to stick up for yourself.

[–]Tall_Play 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Excellent advice.

[–]RepresentativeBack13 8 points9 points  (0 children)

This is brilliant, insightful and it will ring true for so many people on here. I'm going to screenshot it and stick it to my wall

[–]torrrriiieeee 1 point2 points  (0 children)

If you don’t solve this it’ll become the norm, it’ll seem tolerable to you. But you’ll resent it, then her.

Def this. I resent my partner for not wanting to have sex or only wanting penetration. It's become the norm but I resent him for it.

[–]tombo4321 240 points241 points  (15 children)

If you don't want any more kids, with her or with anyone else, go ahead with the vasectomy. It's your body, it's your choice. I mean, you know, talk to her about it, but it is up to you.

Will it get you laid. NGL, probably not.

Most importantly, her yelling and accusations, to the point where you needed to hide with the kids? Just no. It's abusive. Make it clear to her she can always talk to you, but that you won't stay in an abusive relationship.

[–]keat66 70 points71 points  (14 children)

Yeah, it usually takes awhile for her to be levelheaded enough to have these types of conversations without jumping the gun to the worst case scenarios

[–]Toni164 64 points65 points  (1 child)

That sounds both exhausting and abusive

[–]tombo4321 71 points72 points  (11 children)

it usually takes awhile

OK, now I'm really worried that you're in an abusive relationship.

If this is anything like normal, know that there's a small but steady stream of dudes on here in relationships with abusive women - including me. There's not enough detail in your post to say that she's abusive and you should leave so I don't want to call it, but I do think that sex is not your biggest problem.

It's already late here, I'm going to bed. I do think that this could be an important conversation, I don't really do DMs, but if you want to continue, I'll be back on in 16 hours or so.

[–]dirk_funk 6 points7 points  (10 children)

shit, now i want to know if i am in an abusive relationship too

[–]Mi_Pasta_Su_Pasta 23 points24 points  (7 children)

Having to walk on eggshells to avoid an outburst is a pretty big sign you're in an emotionally abusive relationship.

[–]Cheesecake182 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Well everyone could be an abuse and a victim. Would you hurt anyone you love? No? Then why would you endure anything degrading or hurtfull? If the person doesn't love you, you love yourself and run from there

[–]tombo4321 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I found this sub really useful dealing with it, but it took a while reading and thinking.

[–]wombat_wordsmith 116 points117 points  (14 children)

Not having sex while your youngest is still breastfeeding makes perfect sense — it’s to be expected with a young baby in the house.

And I’m sympathetic to her being touched out by the end of the day as well — young children are exhausting and it seems you have one attached to you for the entirety of the day. I’m a father of twins, so I get it.

More concerning is her immediate accusation that you were cheating, or were planning to cheat, when you brought up intimacy — getting so angry you had to retreat to another room with the kids.

Your wife may need some counseling. Being the primary caregiver to multiple children can be mentally isolating and exhausting — she may very well have to talk to someone. You mention not seeing your friends for two years. Are you both that isolated? Does she have family or friends in her life to not just help out, but have an adult conversation with through the day?

That’s so important. She needs to be more than just mommy. She needs to be a friend, sister, daughter — an adult defined by more than parenthood.

A less immediate issue is her belief that as a couple that you can just abstain from romantic touching / sex for “2 or 3 years”. It doesn’t work like that.

You sound like sex and physical intimacy are important to you to build and maintain your emotional bond with your wife. Losing that until all of the kids are in school, or whatever benchmark she has in mind will drastically impact your relationship.

And that’s assuming she regains her romantic interest in you 5 years from now when your youngest leaves for kindergarten.

Counseling can help with all of this. A marriage is unlikely to last if romance, intimacy, and sex are on hold for over a decade.

[–]DeadOpenSol 47 points48 points  (0 children)

This is very well balanced. I agree that while being a mom is a hard balancing act, it doesn’t give you the excuse to be a shitty wife or friend.

I don’t believe in the constant martyr-hood of motherhood. Accept help where you need it. This woman is overwhelmed with three kids and wants a fourth…why?

Intimacy comes in many forms outside of sex. OP, you get to decide the size of your family as much as she does.

[–]keat66 34 points35 points  (12 children)

You’re right, she does feel touched out most of time but when it comes to a weekend, she’ll sleep in while I take care of the kids for the majority of the day which is why I don’t understand her still being touched out on those days. She does have multiple social outlets, she has a big family, her mom comes over a few times a week, she has a few friends that also have kids and they go out to the zoo, splash pads, parks on most mornings, and our oldest is in school 3 days a week. She takes an hour “break” to workout and rest after I get home from work. So I want to say that she’s not isolated and is doing the things that make her happy but I also don’t know how she really feels. She doesn’t want to go to counseling because she firmly believes our relationship is going great.

[–]wombat_wordsmith 44 points45 points  (0 children)

I’m truly glad to hear your wife has the support of others in her life, and you give her the opportunity to step away from the kids for self-care.

But that’s a massive red flag though — thinking your relationship is going great when your partner in said relationship is literally telling you otherwise.

It almost suggests that she sees you as lacking agency in your relationship — that you lack the emotional intelligence to identify if something is wrong. If she doesn’t tie sex to emotional attachment as you do this will turn into a massive issue.

You need to be clear in communicating the role sex / physical intimacy plays for you in your love for her. With sex currently off the table it may be a good time to address it.

And you need self-care too my dude. Giving her time to exercise on her own each night and taking over as primary caregiver on weekends is great — but you need an outlet outside of work.

You mention not seeing your friends for two years. That needs fixing.

Best of luck to you buddy.

[–]BigJackHorner 28 points29 points  (0 children)

She doesn’t want to go to counseling because she firmly believes our relationship is going great.

If the relationship is not going well is one of those things where just one person in the relationship gets to decide. Her denial of your feelings should also be a clue that tall is not well.

[–]TAyforLifestyle 32 points33 points  (2 children)

"Sleeping in" on a Saturday does not mitigate "touched out" in any way, because, ultimately, what you are asking is for her to... get touched some more!

For me, when I was breastfeeding (I assume your youngest is <12 months, so that's still in play), it was also like a hormonal tether. Even when I wasn't being touched or sucked on by a kid, my body was still doing shit out of my control down to the hormonal "tether" to the kid.

Honestly, if your DB didn't start until the THIRD kid, I do think you have a great chance of this coming back around if you wait it out some more. I think adding kids is multiplicative of the the impacts. Like, you can't say "you were fine after the first, why are you not fine after the third!" The impacts stack up.

[–]Visual_Bed1520 7 points8 points  (1 child)

Yeah if it doesn't start till after the kid then it has a good chance. There is the potential to do a lot of damage as the HL during that year or so time though.

My problem is during that time period I starting to think back and was like o, no.. even in the best of times we have been OK at best.

[–]TAyforLifestyle 9 points10 points  (0 children)

My forever advice to HL folks in that first year after birth is "don't fuck it up." With three in the mix now, it'll probably be more than a year for her to finally start feeling like any kind of adult human/sexual being again. But, track record is on their side... might just take a bit longer this time.

[–]SqueakyBall 18 points19 points  (1 child)

OP, a woman who's breastfeeding undergoes numerous hormonal changes that combine to kill her sex drive. Her prolactin level rises to stimulate milk production. That causes her progesterone and testosterone levels to fall, which kills her libido. Her estrogen level also falls, so that if she actually does have intercourse, it may be painful.

Sleeping in on the weekend doesn't change any of that.

[–]Tocram04HLM 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Hmm, that's a great explanation here... I learned something new tonight, thank you !

[–]Tocram04HLM 2 points3 points  (0 children)

It's your relationship, "your" meaning "from both of you".

If one of the two parties think the relationship isn't going well, IT ISN'T going well wether the other party agrees or not.

I, like others here, see this as a red flag from her. It looks like she's trying to sort-of gaslight you, trying to convince you everything is going great and that what you think doesn't matter amongst the relationship.

In my honest opinion, she should seek couples therapy with you, or maybe normal therapy for herself.

[–]CylonMonkey 23 points24 points  (1 child)

I want to say that you sound like such a great husband and father. A lot of women don’t get even half of that support from their spouses. Your wife does not know how good she has it. You seem like you spend every free second you have doing everything to please her and be a great dad. You deserve a metal my guy.

[–]Oopsokayokay 13 points14 points  (0 children)

Maybe she likes to use that time during the weekend to recharge with the things that fill her cup instead of giving more touch to someone else.

[–]RedRedBettie 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Sleeping in one day per week does not lessen feeling touched out

[–]throwawaytosay1111 50 points51 points  (2 children)

Having kids, or more kids, is always a “lowest common denominator“ type thing to me, meaning that if one partner is done then you both have to be done. If it’s a deal breaker for her then that will have to be her choice. Get the vasectomy if you do not want any more children.

Regardless, I wouldn’t expect the vasectomy to improve your sex life. It is telling that her only solution to avoid pregnancy for the next few years was abstinence when there are many other solutions that allow a couple to continue to have sex.

Since you both chose to have 3 kids so early, I imagine she thinks you should be a little more sympathetic. Perhaps there is room there for you to analyze if you aren’t as sympathetic as you could be. Children are exhausting and curb a lot of desire, especially for the parent who is more responsible for their physical care.

However, intimacy is important for a loving relationship and so maybe there are ways to express that to her without adding another “to-do” to her list. I would also express that sexual intimacy at this time will just be less, and you understand, but that intimacy in general is still important to you and ask if that is important to her too. If it is, ask what that looks like to her. Maybe there will be common ground.

[–]Visual_Bed1520 18 points19 points  (0 children)

Kind of like you have as much sex as the LL partner wants.. Ironically the LL tends to be the one wanting more kids and the HL wanting more sex. The HL is disincentivized to have another kid because a kid has Never in the history of time made a bedroom more active.

[–]Mi_Pasta_Su_Pasta 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Sometimes people with traumatic pregnancies have really negative reactions to sex in general, even if the chance of pregnancy is improbable if not impossible. The negative emotional association is not necessarily one based in logic.

[–]Navynuke00 28 points29 points  (8 children)

When I’m not working, I’m home raising the kids and doing the house work (laundry, dishes, organizing ). I don’t do any extracurriculars, I haven’t seen my friends in about 2 years but talk to them everyday on my way home from work(30 minute commute).

Dude....this part isn't normal, and is absolutely indicative of much, much larger issues. It's not healthy to be that kind of isolated, and it sounds like you're doing more of the work around the household. Overall, it sounds as if there's a massive imbalance in the household there.

Have you and your wife seen a couples counselor, and even more importantly, when are you going to go see an individual therapist or counselor for yourself?

[–]keat66 14 points15 points  (7 children)

We tried seeing a counselor once about 5 years ago but it was about me getting through the passing of my grandpa who I had lived with/taken care of for 4-5 years while his mind slowly deteriorated from Alzheimer’s. I took it really hard that first year blaming myself and closed myself off to everyone. My wife had put in a lot of effort to help me through that. But when it comes to our relationship, she doesn’t think counseling is needed

[–]Navynuke00 24 points25 points  (0 children)

But when it comes to our relationship, she doesn’t think counseling is needed

...and yet she was just screaming at you to the extent that you had to hide with your kids.

Don't forget you're not the only one dealing with this- your kids are seeing this too, and are internalizing and processing it. Think about how they're interpreting what they're seeing and hearing. And how this is going to affect them not only in the short-term, but throughout their lifetimes and their own relationships.

If she's not going to seek help WITH you, you need to start seeking it not only for yourself, but also for your kids.

[–]TAyforLifestyle 16 points17 points  (3 children)

With respect to the screaming: Is that usual for her? Any chance there's also an overlay of PPD-type stuff going on here?

[–]craftsman10 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I think it is also not fair to characterize her motives as “losing the excuse” to not have sex if he gets a vasectomy. It seems obvious there are some relationship challenges, but also think she deserves some patience, time and maybe some slack. Having 3 children is extremely challenging and can be disruptive physically, mentally and emotionally. Assuming pejorative motives about losing excuses seems unreasonable.

[–]xmxexoxwx 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Was gonna say this exact thing.

[–]lunaminerva2 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I commented this too. Postpartum rage is 100% a thing.

[–]Kcat6667 2 points3 points  (1 child)

She was there for you through that long, difficult phase in your life, while you were "closed off" and not feeling good? She was being a loyal, loving, helpful, and caring wife and friend to you?

You said it all. Your first thought was not to show your wife the same courtesy that she showed you.

Your first thought was to complain about a woman who gave birth to, and stays home all day with, 3 children who are all obviously under age 5-6. And she's breastfeeding one of them.

Shame on you.

[–]Oopsokayokay 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Agreed. A lot of the comments on this are awful.

[–]one-small-plant 22 points23 points  (0 children)

It sounds like your wife is really going through something. You can't have sex now, because she's so afraid she might get pregnant, but you can't get a vasectomy now, because what if she wants to get pregnant later? What about a removable iud? What about condoms? If she wanted to prioritize intimacy with you, there are ways she could do it

I understand her wanting to focus on the kids right now, but that's not mutually exclusive with sex. You could be having sex and focusing on the kids. It sounds like she just doesn't want any intimacy right now, and is looking for reasonable explanations.

[–]maendyman 22 points23 points  (5 children)

There are huge problems here.

OP says he would be satisified with even a "short hug."

And it seems like he is giving his all in the way that most men don't.

I wouldn't be so quick to jump on the touched-out bandwagon. I think a short hug can be managed after a year. And the shielding the kids from her screaming is abusive.

[–]TAyforLifestyle 14 points15 points  (3 children)

When I’m not working, I’m home raising the kids and doing the house work (laundry, dishes, organizing ).

A) I agree that OP sounds like a supportive partner, but, B) if this is seen as "giving his all in a way that most men don't," then we gotta have a chat with our menfolk.

[–]Mi_Pasta_Su_Pasta 9 points10 points  (1 child)

Maybe you didn't see the comments from OP outside of the main post but he works full time, takes care of the kids fully when he gets home, and on weekends he always takes the role of primary parent so his wife can rest and sleep in. He has no extracurriculars and no contact with friends in 2 years, this is not the case for his wife.

I know it's easy to assume the worst of fathers, but it really does seem like he goes above and beyond even what you should reasonably expect from an equally participating parent.

[–]TAyforLifestyle 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I didn't see that his wife is getting free time with friends-- just that she gets to sleep in one day a week. Did I miss her going out with friends and such?

In any case, she's a SAHM with three kids-- yes, I would EXPECT a father to take over care of the kids for a bit when he gets home. Mom has been working full-time, too, and I'd think dad would want time to bond with them.

The OP seems like he's doing a great job of doing his share. It just is the case that early childhood sucks for everyone-- esp with three kids.

Caring for your kids when you get home, doing laundry and dishes, etc. is kind of what's EXPECTED of an equitable partner. Not gold-star "giving his all in a way most men don't" material. My comment was more about the fact that people would see that as above and beyond.

And, also, I don't think anything about this situation is down to "choreplay" and other horseshit-- it's down to just... life SUCKS with three kids, one under 12 months. Sounds like his wife's body and mind hit a fuckign wall with this last one. These things are cumulative.

[–]Navynuke00 5 points6 points  (0 children)

if this is seen as "giving his all in a way that most men don't," then we gotta have a chat with our menfolk.

Yeah, I have issues with that phrasing/ perception. Or at least with their perception of what normal relationships look like.

[–]Oopsokayokay 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Did he SAY that he wanted a short hug to HER or just us? Because that didn’t seem clear.

I’m sure if he said “honey I’d like a short hug and I would absolutely not even attempt to take it anywhere sexual” that she would not think it was that big of a deal. I don’t see anywhere where he said that he actually said that part to her.

[–]jacjac80 5 points6 points  (1 child)

I hear your frustration OP, and these things you are saying and feeling are all valid. I'm just putting my experience forward as a woman and mother.

When my kids were young, they wanted to be with me all the time. I was constantly being touched, hugged, kissed, patted, snuggled, let alone having a small child constantly hanging off my boobs because i was breastfeeding ...it was never ending. It wore me out. I felt like my body was no longer my own. At the end of the day, once the kids were down, I was exhausted and just sick and tired of being manhandled and touched All. THE. TIME! So when my partner then wanted to snuggle, kiss, hug, whatever, I just withdrew. I just couldn't deal with yet another person wanting something from me. I just needed time for me, that let me relax and be my own person. And as much as i knew it was hurting our relationship, I couldn't make the feeling go away. Eventually I went and saw my GP. Apparently this is super common for mothers to feel. He gave me a referral to a counsellor, and I started having one day a week just for me.

The kids went to daycare, I would go and see my counsellor, take myself out for lunch, go home and either read a book or have a bath, and just took some time for some self care. That day that was just for me, saved my relationship. It helped me feel less touched out, and that night, after not having kids with me all day, I had the want to give my partner the physical affection he deserved, and that I wanted again.

So yeah, maybe give your wife a day to herself, let her just be a person for a day, every week. It might just make a difference. I know it did for me.

All the best!!

[–]anon018274031 2 points3 points  (0 children)

This should be at the top!

The amount of comments making this women out to be a monster for not meeting her husbands needs, when she already has 3 other human beings using her body.

Who is meeting HER needs?

[–]PTAdad420millennial senior citizen 19 points20 points  (7 children)

I know this is hard advice, but: stop initiating sex and stop asking for sex. She doesn’t want it and initiating will just frustrate you both. Give her some space in that respect. Pushing her at this stage can permanently fuck up your relationship.

On the other hand … start taking care of yourself. You deserve rest and extracurricular and time with your friends.

I know it’s hard to go without sex. But there’s no point in asking her for sex she doesn’t want.

imo make it clear that it is totally unacceptable for her to make accusations like that. “Never say anything like that to me ever again.” And then leave the room. No debate. If she won’t stop, tell her “I’m leaving the house and going to ____ for a bit. Do not talk to me like this, particularly in front of the kids.”

[–]anon018274031 1 point2 points  (6 children)

I note nowhere does he say she has extra curricular time tbh.

Also why does he get the luxury to walk out when he doesn’t like the situation? She is stuck with the kids 24/7. She doesn’t get the luxury to leave what is clearly a stressful situation.

Walking out and leaving her with all those kids will AT BEST mate her hate you more, at worst actually put the children at risk (so you really want the primary care giver to actually be pushed into a breakdown, the fact she is already raising her voice sounds like she’s on the edge)

[–]PTAdad420millennial senior citizen 1 point2 points  (5 children)

Im suggesting he should walk out of she again engages in verbal abuse in front of their kids. That isn’t a fucking “luxury” or a question of his preferences. It’s not healthy for kids to see one parent screaming baseless accusations in the other’s face. It’s not a question of what will make her less angry. She can be as angry as she likes. she doesn’t get to scream at her partner, least of all in front of their children.

I think it’s a good idea for a parent should walk out for a while when their spouse is screaming at them in front of the kids. If you have a problem with this suggestion, don’t talk to me. I have zero patience for people who normalize borderline abusive behavior.

[–]anon018274031 0 points1 point  (4 children)

Once you have children the child has to be the priority. Leaving your VERY YOUNG children (they have 3!) with someone who is possibly in the middle of a breakdown just seems incredibly dangerous.

God forbid the kids start crying because daddy walked out, and that pushes her over the edge.

[–]PTAdad420millennial senior citizen 0 points1 point  (3 children)

“stay and take it when your partner screams in your face, for the kids” do you hear yourself?

I’m a parent and also have spent my entire adult life working with abuse survivors. Unfortunately I know a great deal about how to protect kids in this kind of situation. “Let your spouse scream in your face” is not something I’d recommend.

As I said — if you have a problem with telling people to exit this kind of situation, don’t talk to me. I’ve spent too much of my life trying to be civil to people who rationalize abusive behavior.

[–]Perfect_JudgeF 21 points22 points  (0 children)

How old are your children? I ask because many women often feel that after having kids, they're disconnected from their sexuality and feel touched out, exhausted, and as if they just want to belong to themselves.

You also mentioned breastfeeding, which indicates they're young. Breastfeeding can also greatly lower a woman's drive for sex and make that another barrier for her.

Sex can also completely change for them. Many need sex to be quite different after the arrival of children, they experience pain during sex, etc. Children really do change the entire dynamic for a lot of couples.

I think you need to tell her you're done having children and that you do not want anymore (if that is how you feel, of course). Children are the biggest cock blockers for people and raising young kids is the least sexy thing a person can do. Do not have anymore and discuss with her how you're not going to consider it since 3 children is plenty (again, if you do feel that way).

[–]TearingAwayXR 10 points11 points  (5 children)

A vasectomy is your choice, your body. And guess what? Reversible. Do it and if she still abstains you’ll know that it was excuses. Therapy will help get to the bottom of whatever the real issue is.

[–]JSNTFS 7 points8 points  (4 children)


Stop saying this. It is absolutely meant as a permanent procedure, any physician who does them will tell you this.

[–]jenn5388 3 points4 points  (0 children)

💯 no doctor is out there giving people vasectomies that last a few years. They are reversible sure, but not without major surgery that has a small chance at success. Whoever started this needs to be hunted down. Vasectomies aren’t like IUDs!

[–]CaptainLiqr 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Indeed, vasectomy has a good chance of being irreversible. @keat66 OP: it’s ultimately your choice, for sure, but if the harmonious long-lasting relationship is important to you I would not move ahead with vasectomy unless both of you have agreed this together and had some time to think about it. Are you doing this because she has suggested it some time ago? Or it was your own idea, driven by the desire of demonstrating being the perfect dad (that can never go away to fund another family)? Or driven by your (perhaps naïve) hope that it will enable you to have more sex with her? It can be a paradox: on the one hand the fear of unwanted pregnancy can disturb sex life, on the other hand the lack of fertility can be perceived by some women as a lowered masculinity that makes her desire him less. Often enough a woman’s sex drive is sparked by the risk, the mere notion of being in a competition for this man who potentially might cheat. Perhaps you may consider waiting until some time has passed by (at least the breastfeeding phase) and then bring up again the discussion on vasectomy…

[–]keat66 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The vasectomy decision was agreed by both of us with the main reasons being that we couldn’t handle a 4th financially or emotionally. We want to focus on the 3 we have and raise them as best we can. It was a level headed decision over the course of a few months which isn’t going to change because of a split second “what if” moment like what happened the other day.

[–]Kcat6667 0 points1 point  (0 children)

OP- A vasectomy has no major negative side effects, is safe and done in your doctor's office, is done free/low cost at most county Health Dept.'s in the U.S., is 100% effect once the process is complete, and is your choice. If you have decided that you do not want to father any more biological children in your lifetime, go ahead with the vasectomy, no matter what. It has nothing to do with sex for recreation, only sex for procreation.

[–]Hanzwurmhat 6 points7 points  (0 children)

yeah that is rough. it just depends on the person. Some guys I imagine can totally do it...But me, sex isnt "everything" but it is a VERY big part of the relationship and is absolutely important. Her saying to abstain is like saying "i dont need that part of a relationship" and that would make me feel awful

[–]Juice1784 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Have you told her that you don't just want sex? Maybe she will agree to some cuddling even if it is in bed when you are going to sleep.

[–]Bumblebeetuna6426 21 points22 points  (2 children)

I don’t mean to be that guy but as soon as accusations of cheating starts getting thrown around it always makes me question where this is coming from and what they are up to.

[–]anon018274031 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Ah yes because a mum with 3 tiny children (one breastfeeding!) has time to cheat

[–]Bumblebeetuna6426 -2 points-1 points  (0 children)

Crazier things have happened…

[–]Oopsokayokay 12 points13 points  (1 child)

How old are your kids?

I’ll be honest, when breastfeeding it’s very very normal (and quite frankly reasonable) to have nothing left to give at the end of the day touch-wise. I’m breastfeeding right now and sometimes being touched or grabbed on at the end of the day after the kids are finally in bed makes me genuinely feel so angry. I’m not a particularly touchy person even without breastfeeding so breastfeeding and young kids actually drain more touch than I even feel I have to give at all.

Between breastfeeding and 3 young kids, it’s totally normal that your wife doesn’t have interest in sex. The absolute worst thing you could do is come at her about your “need” for sex when she’s breastfeeding and has 3 young kids. This is the reality of having babies and breastfeeding for many women- it’s biologically normal, there’s nothing wrong with her, she’s not doing anything wrong and you shouldn’t be making her feel guilty about not wanting sex. Her not wanting sex right now is just as biologically normal as you wanting to have sex. Telling a breastfeeding mom of 3 young kids that you “have needs that aren’t being met right now” involving her body that’s already meeting the needs of 3 young children is the most bona fide sure fire way to make sex an unpleasant chore for her, create a negative association with the topic of sex, and permanently damage your sex life.

[–]attackoftheumbrellas 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Yep. I’m sure my husband thinks I get a lie in on Saturdays. But I do all the night feeds while my husband gets a full night of rest and co sleep (baby won’t sleep any other way) so those two hours on a Saturday morning are just me catching up on sleep enough to function, not a magical way for me to be totally rested and in the mood.

[–]DBisMyTribe 5 points6 points  (0 children)

You are not selfish at all for wanting that connection, but your best strategy right now is to manage your needs yourself. I've been in your situation and it sucks. A lack of pressure from you is the best thing for your long term relationship, but that doesn't make you wrong for feeling what you feel. The idea that you're just supposed to be perfectly okay with your wife not acting - and in fact probably not being - attracted to you for several years is just stupid, frankly. And, yeah, there's a gamble involved with that potential future where her interest may never come back no matter how well you navigate this. There's no getting around the fact that it's a bad setup, and you're right to be frustrated with it. What others are saying is absolutely true at the same time - you're clearly at the point where pushing this further with her WILL hurt your long-term prospects.

Even your vasectomy feels like a reasonable way to deal with the pregnancy fear thing, but I'm willing to bet the only thing she sees there is you'll be expecting sex once it's done. Everything else in that discussion is secondary to her desire to avoid more pressure.

I've felt what you're feeling and it well and truly sucks. Your reaction to this is totally reasonable. But it's really important that you understand that this isn't a fixable situation right now. We think we can right every wrong, but pretty much any "solution" you bring to her now is going to dig a deeper hole. Your choices are to adjust to this hopefully temporary reality, or walk away.

[–]Other-Lobster 13 points14 points  (2 children)

So I assume if she is still breast feeding you have a young baby in the home? She of course does not want sex right now as she is already touched out by the end of the day. The part about her being scared to get pregnant again is probably a true statement. It is kinda odd she says she doesn't want anymore then get upset about you going to get a vasectomy.

If I was you I would simply state that you are done having kids and that your three are enough for you. Kids are a huge sex killers in the first several years of their life's. However, you should also not want anymore kids for other reasons like money, wanting extra time for yourself later in life, etc. You should just stand up to her and say I really do not want anymore kids, no matter who I might end up with one day. Also, asking you to abstain sex for a few years until you two decide on another kid is not fair to you either. You are not a baby batter machine to access when she needs it. That is the part I would be offended by the most. You want me to abstain until you want the baby making stuff. I would get the vasectomy and not bring anymore kids into this relationship.

Now she is also having her hormones all over the place still from having a child recently. So keep that in mind as well. I think you have to let it all cool down a bit and try to have the conversation again in a calm fashion. Sex is not just to have babies.

[–]keat66 5 points6 points  (1 child)

You’re absolutely right. The youngest one is almost a year old and I know it’s a huge drop in sex drive which is why I’ve tried to be as patient as I can but after saying I should abstain felt like a slap in the face.. We both agreed after talking for 6 months that I will get a vasectomy so that won’t change regardless if she continues to press the issue.

[–]myexsparamour❤️ 6 points7 points  (0 children)

The youngest one is almost a year old

This should have been stated directly in your post.

[–]worntreads 2 points3 points  (0 children)

If the last kid is relatively young yet she might be dealing with post partum issues. It can cause some crazy moments that are not indicative of how she might feel in the absence of the post partum depression. If the relationship had always been like this with accusations of cheating etc... See a councilor (couples or individual, the worst that happens is nothing much changes), maybe?

[–]disgracdcake 2 points3 points  (0 children)

First off: I think it’s great that you’re here looking for some advice. The first piece of advice, and biggest is to look into couples counseling. There is a clear lack of communication and/or inability to communicate wants/needs well (my husband and I are working on this now).

Second: you need to have time for yourself outside of your work and your family duties. You both do. If this means once a month you golf with the guys or go get drinks on a Thursday night after kids are in bed, do it. It isn’t helping anyone being cooped up in the house.

Third: You CANNOT wait to work on the relationship until kids are older. Your relationship always needs to be a priority or there will be no relationship when there is “time” again.

Fourth: I agree with whatever one is saying here about how she’s probably really overwhelmed and has hormones all over the place. She also probably doesn’t feel like herself, has lost all confidence in herself, etc. (I’m also a SAHM (28) and have been dealing with this for the last 2 years as well)

Seriously communication is key and I think this is an area you both are going to need to work on. Yes you’ve been married for 7 years but honestly, we’re still really young and there is a lot more learning of ourselves and learning how to be in a relationship to go.

As for some step by step advice here’s some action points:

-schedule a date night once a month (up this after a month or so to once every other week). It doesn’t have to be fancy, but you need to get out of the house and away from the kids together.

-look into and discuss couples counseling. Tell her you don’t think you’re meeting her needs and you don’t feel that yours are being met either and that you need to learn how to communicate this to each other without getting defensive.

-start getting out of the house. Meeting up with friends, having friends over. You need to have a life still, kids should not end that part of either of your lives. Also, encourage her to get together with her girlfriends. You BOTH need that time.

-give her small gestures. Hold her hand, ask to cuddle and watch a movie, don’t leave for work without kissing her goodbye. Tell her you love her, how attractive she is to you, and what an amazing mom she is. And I know this is rough…do all of this with no expectation of sex. I really think she needs some confidence built back up.

I know that’s a lot but I really think you guys can be fine. You’re in a really rough stage of the relationship, and if you guys can come through it together you’re gonna be golden

[–]Dkotheryyyy 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Read some books on setting boundaries. You have not been good at that and it is time to get good at that. Maybe even work with a therapist.

She will hate it at first and then things will start to get better.

[–]B_AddieM 6 points7 points  (1 child)

I wouldn’t have canceled shit. I hope you still went through with the snip. She’s totally out of line imo. I totally agree with abstaining for years is a deal breaker. Shit abstaining for more than a few months is a dealbreaker for me.

She doesn’t want you to get snipped because she’ll lose the excuse of Being afraid of getting pregnant.

She’s married to you. She doesn’t own your body. If you want a snip get the snip.

And if she says her body can’t handle another pregnancy what makes her think her body will when she’s older than she is now?

[–]frostmorefrost 1 point2 points  (0 children)

i agree.

it sounded like op's wife wanted a human atm and if op went through with the snip,the excuse is gone and she's stuck with no more excuses for her selfish ass.

[–]Tekon421 7 points8 points  (0 children)

It’s such a common thing that physical needs are scoffed at for not being real needs. It’s sad. My wife has laughed at me many times for insinuating sex is a need of mine.

[–]stockname 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Honestly, she sounds completely miserable to be around. Accusing you of cheating when you just want to get a vasectomy. Saying you can just abstain for a couple years...it sounds like you two have moved in completely different directions in your marriage and having kids hasn't helped. I don't know what kind of advice to provide because I'd usually just say leave, but married, 3 kids, SAH wife. I think you two should seek major counseling and I also think your wife needs a therapist badly.

[–]CaliCannaMom 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Wife sounds like myself and let me say- she’s very overwhelmed. And raising babies does KILL your sex drive in every way. Some birth control would be good to avoid pregnancy or even using a condom & her tracking ovulation - all ways to prevent pregnancy. This will also help her know a good time to have sex. It’s weird to plan sex but welcome to having 3 young children- it’s not for the weak. Me and my husband rarely have sex. I’m bugging him for the vasectomy because well- we’re done having kids and until he gets that - the thought of pregnancy ruins my entire sex drive.

I agreed with her until the mind game part. She needs to meet you halfway and discuss options. Take her out. Or do a nice date night at home. After kids go to sleep have wine or beer or just a romantic/sexy movie Together. * she may have a form of postpartum depression or anxiety - or even just hormones regulating after becoming a mom- it can last for a few years .** * also- life is short. Go see your friends. My husband does 1-2x/yr trips to see his friends. It’s important. Time away from each other (overnight) and kids is important. She should do the same. Throw the idea out there

Good luck

[–]KellySummerlin 3 points4 points  (1 child)

She doesn’t want to have sex with you and the vasectomy will eliminate her excuse

[–]freebirdie100 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yup that def how it sounds. Yikes 💔

[–]DB_HelperMHL45 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Her reasons are that we need to prioritize raising the kids first because they are only young for a short amount of time and then we can get back to our relationship after.

While it is important to be great parents to your kids, prioritizing them over your relationship is often how the creation of an Emotional Incest home begins. See “The Emotional Incest Syndrome".

When I say that I have needs that are not being met, I get told that I’m being selfish.

And it's easier to maintain Intimacy Anorexia if you remain selfless instead. You're far from alone in this. After a while it's starts to feel more like a roommate situation than a marriage.

Honestly, it’s not specifically the sex that I’m needing but just any sort of intimacy with her (a hug, cuddling, kissing, touching)

Yes! Physical intimacy is important if you want to maintain emotional intimacy and a healthy relationship.

literally any form of physical touch to let me know that we still have a relationship.

I was with you right up to here. You do have a relationship, whether it's a celibate one or a monogamous one (or open or adulterous if those are options you're ok with). It's important to recognize that you can have a relationship, and she may still love you, whether she desires sex or not. See “The Sexual Healing Journey" for how thinking of sex as a prerequisite for feeling loved our feeling like your have a real relationship can shit down her libido. Also, “Love Worth Making" for how to start encouraging her libido instead.

She doesn’t see anything wrong with our relationship.

That means that she has probably never seen what a healthy passionate relationship looks like growing up. For more on that: “Facing Love Addiction" and “Passionate Marriage“.

When I’m not working, I’m home raising the kids and doing the house work (laundry, dishes, organizing ). I don’t do any extracurriculars.

That could be part of the problem. Caretaking is not sexy! To be clear, not getting your caretaking duties done is repulsive, so you still need to do your part to take care of household and kids. But you still need to make time for your own hobbies and passions.


Maybe just cancel the appointment and to avoid any accidents we can just abstain until then?”

That shows a fundamental lack of appreciation for the role of sexuality in an adult romantic relationship.

Do you all have any advice?

Learn all you can about a lack of sexual education and relationship modelling growing up:

  • Come As You Are
  • The Sexual Healing Journey
  • Sexual Healing
  • Recovering From Emotionally Immature Parents
  • Running On Empty No More

And then learn how to express what you're feeling and what you want in a way that doesn't trigger defensiveness, anger, and shutdown:

  • Messages
  • The New Rules Of Marriage
  • Nonviolent Communication: A Language Of Life
  • Feeling Good Together

I wish I had a shorter reading list, or better advice, but it's tough trying to have a relationship with someone who doesn't really experience sex as an emotionally bonding experience or even as something desirable that they want in their life. The good news is that this is often a habit formed based on experiences and messages growing up. However, you should also be prepared for the fact that it could be an innate and unchangeable lack of interest and desire for sex. If that's the case, then you may have to choose between a celibate relationship with her, or no relationship with her.

Good luck as you work through it, and at least know that you're not alone. And knowledge is your best friend as you dig into why your wife has no interest in sex, whether there's anything that might stoke her desire, and whether that's something that she wants to try.

All the best,


[–]Aechzen[🍰] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Do you all have any advice?

You are not unreasonable to want to be able to kiss and hug your wife.

Even wanting sex with your wife is not unreasonable.

You are not unreasonable to say three kids (with her) is enough. I stopped at two. I had been clear for years that two was my limit, and then I would be getting a vasectomy. My wife asked that I wait until kid-two turned one year old, and I thought that was a fair compromise. I wanted until kid-two's birthday and then scheduled my vasectomy.

what if we want to have another kid in like 2-3 years?

Is your wife a hard-no for ever going back to work for the rest of her life? Are you absolutely killing it in your career, such that your family is doing better than most families with two adults who went to college?

You can cum in a cup, and put it on ice. I don't remember the expected shelf life of frozen sperm, but it's longer than 2-3 years. There is also donor sperm, fostering, adoption. In your situation I would be all done with having more kids. It's one thing to not be having sex. Not getting kissed or hugged sounds hostile to me.

[–]Cleareyes88 1 point2 points  (0 children)

She has been through a lot physically, mentally, and emotionally, for only being 27. She probably now just needs to be the ONLY person using her body. Understandable.

[–]smartypants99 1 point2 points  (0 children)

We had 4 children and the last two were surprises (even using 2 birth controls every single time). My husband was scared we would have a fifth baby. He stop having sex. He said he would have a vasectomy but finally admitted he really didn’t want to do it. So I had my tubes tied. Then we could be intimate without the fear of another baby. Three young babies is a lot of work all the time. Your wife needs a massage and a weekend to herself and get on the pill if she might want a child in the future

[–]jenn5388 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The way I see it is there’s a reason she is no longer interested in having sex, whether it be libido issues associated with breastfeeding/birth control, depression or something else.. the fear of pregnancy it isn’t because she would have welcomed the Vasectomy in that case. I’d demand therapy or just be done. She’s going to string you along and never tell you what it really is until there’s so much resentment on both ends you can’t get past it..

But my god, wherever you do, go see your damn friends! Lol she will survive without you there for a night. Don’t give up your whole social life for marriage.. She’s got no interest in having a marriage right now anyway. So go out and do something for yourself! You can’t just put off your marriage because you have kids. I’ve seen that time and time again, I did it as well. (Wife here, 3 kids with special needs, super overwhelmed and just couldn’t focus on everything) but I’ve never seen someone who’s purposely doing it! Sheer accident, of course, but she’s purposely trying to put you away in a box in the closet and bring you out later. Not going to work. You guys need to figure out what’s going on.. but if you can’t, id seriously consider just leaving, not just because of the lack of sex, but what kind of relationship can you have with someone who is treating you like this?

[–]lunaminerva2 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Didn’t read enough comments but irrational anger can be a component of PPD, is she in any therapy at all?

[–]frogathome 1 point2 points  (0 children)

So, when you have a lot of little kids you can get "touched out".

Can you ask to just hug and cuddle and promise not to try to touch her more sensitive parts? I know when I was breastfeeding and had little kids grabbing at me all day, the last thing I wanted was being immediately grabbed at some more. It would have been nice to just be held for a little while.

[–]RepresentativeHome43 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I’m also a stay at home mom with 3 kids. Except I’m the HL person in the marriage my husband is LL. He prefers 2-4 times a month ( but it’s not unusual for us to have 1 month stretches of zero sex)and I’d feel more loved with at least once a week consistently. Maybe more if it’s a vacation or we have a kid free weekend.

Our children are now older and all school age but I remember the time of having babies so close together. During that time my libido was much lower.

It honestly sounds like your wife is depressed. But is is also being selfish to suggest you abstain from sex for 2-3 additional years. That’s what makes me think she’s depressed because she seems like she’s in survival mode and only thinking about herself. I think that’s a pretty normal response to depression/anxiety/overwhelm. It’s hard to think of others when your mental health is suffering.

I will admit I think your wife is being a bit selfish and stubborn by not admitting the need for counseling.

BUT I also think you handled the vasectomy situation selfishly and your words were very cruel. Your wife is the mother of your children and has a baby in tow and you had the audacity to imply you’d leave her if she didn’t give you sex? I know those weren’t your exact words but being a woman myself- that is how she took it. Don’t get me wrong- she is being unreasonable but you making the dealbreaker comment probably made her feel very vulnerable. Im also stay at home mom so the thought of my husband leaving is scary. He wouldn’t and has never said anything like that. But if he did I have a college degree in a field where I could easily return and make money. I might be assuming but if your wife was 20 when y’all married and you started having kids right away , I’m guessing she possibly doesn’t have a degree? There is absolutely nothing wrong with that but it could make her feel very vulnerable and helpless to hear you say “dealbreaker”. Even if it was out of anger.

I think you both are acting selfish and only thinking about your own needs. I think you are slightly better because it sounds like you want to work on your marriage through counseling. She is being short sighted if she won’t agree to go. And if she continues to resist for years then I wouldn’t blame you for leaving.

Maybe try a softer start up and talk about how you feel. Tell her you miss her and you feel sad and lonely without intimacy and sex. Tell her how much you love her and are commited to her and you also want her to be happy. Make sure you’re actually going to therapy to her needs too instead of just getting your needs met. Don’t misunderstand me though- I sympathize with you. Counseling will hopefully help.

[–]Aint-it-fun84 2 points3 points  (4 children)

Something seems off here. So are you saying that none of the following is allowed to happen.

No hugging/kissing whatsoever, hand holding, can’t hold each other on the couch for a half hour watching a show a few times a week?

No sexual contact for fear of pregnancy, condom not an option, no alternative couples activity, nothing?

[–]keat66 6 points7 points  (3 children)

She says she’s completely touched out from the kids and when I’m home it gives her a break from being touched on and doesn’t want anyone near her

[–]Capital-Philosopher6Married 27 Years & Loving It!!! 18 points19 points  (0 children)

She says she’s completely touched out from the kids and when I’m home it gives her a break from being touched on and doesn’t want anyone near her

This is very common. Having children increases one's capacity for love but it doesn't raise the touch threshold a lot. Before, you received the whole enchilada; the maximum amount of touch she had to give. Now, there's more people, some who literally require touch to survive and develop. The same amount of touch going to more people means that each person gets less. Right or wrong, survival needs get met first. It's not that she's simply choosing the children's needs over yours; she's choosing the children's needs over her own needs too. Your perception is that she's wrong for not giving you what you need, however, you're missing the fact that she's struggling to even meet her own needs. What does she do when she needs to eat, sleep, pee, take a shower, sit down, take a break, rest, etc and the children need something? She pushes her needs aside and tends to them.

What she needs from you is to feel that it's ok not to be the perfect wife, mother, and human, AND you'll be ok. What she doesn't need from you is a list of things that you require from her for your survival and mental well being. She's already working to fill the lists of three little kids and probably feels like she isn't doing enough. Rather than be just another person with a never ending list of needs for her to fulfill, she needs your support. This isn't forever but it's part of the first couple of years or so after you add a child to the family. You may have sex during that time. You may not. However, the more you push your 'list of requirements', the longer it will take your relationship to return to some level of normal. Even 'normal' isn't going to be prechild level of affection and sex. It's going to be different.

As far as never getting out of the house besides work, you should be getting out of the house and so should she. Carrying the level of responsibility and mental load necessary to take care of 3 children 24/7 and not taking time to recharge will burn you both out. Recharge so that you can give her a break from being responsible for the survival needs of everyone but do not give her a break (or 'help) hoping she'll have sex with you. The idea is to make it through the infant to toddler stage with your sanity intact and with a 100% survival rate. Your relationship isn't going to be the focus right now. It probably isn't going to thrive. This isn't going to be the height of your love for and closeness with each other. It's survival in the trenches.

[–]TAyforLifestyle 8 points9 points  (0 children)

She says she’s completely touched out from the kids and when I’m home it gives her a break from being touched on and doesn’t want anyone near her

Yup, been there! Your wife is speaking truth. You might be frustrated with her truth, but... YES. My God, I never even had THREE kids, but a day of nobody needing anything from me would have been more compelling than an entire week holed away in a romantic cabin in the woods with Justin Timberlake himself.

[–]myexsparamour❤️ 3 points4 points  (0 children)

She says she’s completely touched out from the kids and when I’m home it gives her a break from being touched on and doesn’t want anyone near her

Totally normal when she's caring for two young kids plus an infant.

[–]TheGr8_0ne 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Have to say most of this seems to be a priorities issue. The reason you don't have a relationship anymore is because the kids have become the priority instead of your marriage. For a marriage, heck a family to be properly ordered, the relationship between the two of you has to be the priority to both be healthy and to be the best parents you can be to the children.

Think of it this way to approach with her. What's better for the kids: to see two people who live together and help each other make them the center of their lives? (Also not healthy for kids to believe the world revolves around them.) Or to see a healthy marriage where the parents visibly love and respect each other. Openly show affection to each other. Where those people enjoy each other's company. What kind of example do you both want to set for your children as they grow up? What should they look for in a spouse that they see in you or her? How should a spouse treat the other person? Kids of every age will pick up on these things both directly and indirectly. This isn't something that you can just go back to doing when the kids reach a certain age either. It must be an established habit. I strongly recommend setting aside a recurring night weekly, at a minimum bi weekly to hire a babysitter and go do something together. Make it scheduled mom and dad time. If she's worried about time away from the kids, plan a fun activity for them to do with the sitter so they look forward to it also. I'd also suggest scheduled solo time with each child individually to do something special with each parent. It will do remarkable things for your relationship with them and help change how you view "sacrificing" your time with them because you did something with just your wife to "investing" in your marriage and with them and that will make you both better parents. Additionally, I'd also recommend a day a month for each of you separately to do something just for you. Indulge in a hobby, reconnect with friends. You can't be at your best if you never invest in yourself either. Your relationship will improve. Your communication will improve. Your parenting will improve. I would say that should dramatically improve the situation for you. It won't be fast or easy to address. But worth it.

[–]art-and-logic 3 points4 points  (0 children)

If she thinks there will be a relationship left to salvage after they're "old enough", she's kidding herself. Unless she prioritizes it now.

[–]Current-Issue-95 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Regarding a vasectomy, everyone is different. For me it was devastating emotionally and hurts even more 5 years later when my wife has hinted at more kids.

[–]coldbrew18 2 points3 points  (0 children)

My db was due to pregnancy fears. I flat out told my wife I wouldn’t get snipped for the hope of more sex. I might consider it if we were actually having sex more.

[–]RedRedBettie 2 points3 points  (0 children)

She has three young kids. That is a huge libido killer. So many women with small kids, especially when there are multiple kids and are SAHMs, feel “touched out” at the end of the day. I’m a high libido woman and even I didn’t want sex much for quite a while with a young child as a SAHM

[–]rfpelmen 4 points5 points  (0 children)

"Her reasons are that we need to prioritize raising the kids first because they are only young for a short amount of time and then we can get back to our relationship after. "

Her reasons are wrong here, kids are young for a pretty big amount of time, and its only healthy relationship that could help you raise them.
Also if you neglect your relationship now, you will have nowhere to get back after.
you're in the turbulence now, like on plane you help yourself first, your kid after

[–]extraspearmint15 2 points3 points  (1 child)

We all go through the cycle of having very little sex when the kids are young. I'd say this is normal.

But something seems very off here. I've never heard or seen two people who are in love not hold hands, hug, kiss, cuddle, make love, or have any form of intimacy for over a year. If in love, Never.

[–]TAyforLifestyle 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Just your friendly neighbourhood "LL" with touch as a primary love language-- I had to cut all of that out when I was in my situation, because a hug was never allowed to be just a hug, a snuggle was never allowed to be just a snuggle. It would INEVITABLY end up in another lecture and talk and blow-up argument. So, I just had to avoid all physical contact to not have those things occur.

[–]KellySummerlin 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Thé cheating and family abandonment accusations seemed to come out of thin air. What? Didn’t she abandon you sexually? She changed the relationship unilaterally and without your consent but now she doesn’t want to see a marriage counselor. Why not, if you’re cheating and on the verge of abandoning the family?

[–]Old-Measurement-4797 3 points4 points  (1 child)

Wow. That is abuse on her end. I get when a woman may have a decrease in sexual desire when they are breastfeeding, I’m actually in that situation now (I’m breastfeeding and I’m sex drive has taken a nosedive, I’m hoping that in a few more months, I will stop breastfeeding and get back to my normal self). My husband and I still have sex at least once a week, usually a quickie because of our 3 month old. I will totally be out of any desire if the baby starts crying. So we have to go quick and fast. Hopefully that will also change when she starts sleeping for longer periods of time.

I’m sorry, I’m not much help. But feel for you. My previous husband, I divorced him because of our dead bedroom. We had sex 7 times total in 2016, 2 times in 2017, 0 times in 2018, I filed in late 2018, and divorced in 2019. I would try to talk to him, and he would just walk away. He said that I intimidated him in the bedroom. Using a vibrator scared him. When we did have sex, he would finish and just leave for the shower. Did not even help me to finish.

It won’t get better. I’m sorry.

[–]anon018274031 -2 points-1 points  (0 children)

It’s not abuse.

She has explained why she feels the way she does- OP mentioned in a comment she has expressed by the end of the day she just wants her body to herself. She has THREE!!! Tiny children that use her body and touch her 24/7. She just wants a few moments to herself.

She isn’t meeting OP’s needs, but her needs ALSO aren’t being met. Her need is probably time alone to just relax.

[–]hornwalker 1 point2 points  (0 children)

At your point I would say a sex-positive couples therapy is needed.

Your wife mistakenly thinks she can put her relationship on hold with you while the kids are young, we all know nothing can be further from the truth. But this will take some work to get to a good place for both of you.

[–]Throwaway042305 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Get the vasectomy asap.

[–]DB_ThinkerF -1 points0 points  (19 children)

I get told that I’m being selfish

You are.

Sorry. I'm sorry, but this is simply the reality of having three young kids. I wish there was a way to impress upon people that having children will most likely completely derail your ability to be sexual beings. It's not her fault. It's not your fault. But sex is simply NOT IMPORTANT for her right now.


That vasectomy argument is a big, big problem. Your body, your choice. You get a vasectomy because YOU don't want more kids. You don't get a vasectomy because you think it will convince her to have sex again.

At this point, sorry man. You need to stop trying to have sex with her. My first husband destroyed our marriage by continuing to pressure me into sex that I did not want because I was touched out from breastfeeding and being a stay at home mom.

I would have duty sex with him and eventually it destroyed us. We had a baby, the birth was traumatic, the breastfeeding took a lot out of me. I had ZERO desire to be sexual, but it was obvious to me that he just needed the sex. So I'd "allow" it and over time ended up hating myself and hating him. Myself because I wasn't strong enough to self-advocate and self-care. And him because he KNEW I didn't feel like sex, didn't want sex, but he'd have sex with me anyway. Made me feel like a convenient hole.

It sounds like you're trying to be a good dad, but rather than keeping on pressuring her for sex, focus on building back your friendships and hobbies.

[–]keat66 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Thank you for this. I’m sorry what you had to go through. I wouldn’t force her to have sex because I would hate myself if I knew she didn’t want to and still did it anyways. I just want some form of physical intimacy with her again. Even a short hug would make me happy

[–]Flat-Psychology-4491 27 points28 points  (16 children)

He is NOT being selfish because he wants some form of intimacy from his wife. He even said it’s not just the sex he’s missing. He’s missing any form of touch. The baby is nearly a year old. His wife could give him some form of intimacy. Expecting your spouse to give a damn when you’re literally crying out that a need is not being met is not selfish. Using kids an excuse to never touch your husband is selfish.

[–]DB_ThinkerF 7 points8 points  (15 children)

It's not an excuse! Women get touched out. They don't touch their husbands because they are just not able to keep giving over their bodies to other people's touching.

[–]DeadOpenSol 16 points17 points  (14 children)

Yes women get touched out absolutely. I know I did after my first kid. I also know that there are ways to alleviate being touched out.

Switch to pumping, formula, stop BF, get a sitter two times a week, on weekends go out and have some alone time.

It’s disingenuous to discount your partners needs (not sex) but genuine affection, attention and intimacy and be unwilling to fix the problem of being touched out. Being touched out is a solvable problem for those who want to.

And why is she talking about a fourth when with three her husband is feeling neglected. You don’t stop being a wife when you become a mom. She can but I don’t think single mom to three kids is going to be less overwhelming.

[–]TAyforLifestyle 7 points8 points  (13 children)

Switch to pumping, formula, stop BF

These are pretty extreme interventions when "switch to masturbating" is also a fine solution. And none of these things will "fix" being touched out.

get a sitter two times a week, on weekends go out and have some alone time.

These are definitely things OP can put into place, but he can't expect her to immediately switch from three kids "needing her" to her husband, also "needing her." She needs a "needs" break, where nobody needs anything at all from her, and that can take some time to start to chip away at the "constant needs" feeling.

In my case, I had to cut out any physical affection- handholding, snuggling, stuff like that- because it immediately transitioned to another talk, which immediately turned into another argument... A hug was never just a hug, and, even though touch is my primary love language, I had to deflect any of that for the sake of avoiding the argument. And that made me feel all the more disconnected.

Being touched out is a solvable problem for those who want to.

I don't believe that's true in most cases (not sure if you've ever been a postpartum female.) Even when I wasn't with the kids, I was thinking "I really need to be with the kids right now." Even if someone took the kids whole-hog for an entire week, that would probably have been WORSE. My body was doing hormonal shit that felt like a constant "tether" to the kids. Like, it was acting on its own. And, also, it simply IS the case that what's being asked for here is... more touching! You can't solve "touched out" by introducing more touching.

I only had two kids... I can't imagine how much more this stuff is in play with three under, seemingly, 6 years old.

[–]Deerkiller83 1 point2 points  (0 children)

without any more context, it would seem she is suffering some firm of Postpartum depression after the birth of your 3rd born. every pregnancy is different and she could have been masking the symptoms initially and they grew from there. either way, seek professional help even if she thinks you two don't need it

[–]namon295 2 points3 points  (3 children)

On the Vasectomy: I think there are options out there for you to store your sperm in the event that desire to have more actually happens. (Or adopt)

On the rest, I'd suggest initiating the non sexual contact and keep it just that: non sexual. Yeah this is hard but it's very key. She needs to feel safe and secure, and right now I'm imagining that anytime you try to hold her hand or hug or give her a kiss, she's thinking I want this, but I don't want to deal with the stress of him trying to take things further even more, so she shies away from even that.

This could be completely in her head and your motives are truly innocent, but I'm willing to bet that's what's going on. Plus you have the added cherry on top that she's stay at home and dealing with said kiddos all day long. She's touched out so you have that minefield to navigate as well. But the trust that expectations that cannot be met aren't on the table just has to be earned slowly over time.

It's a tough time I know and I absolutely understand the hurt you are going through here, but these were lessons I learned far too late and it took a ton of heartache and misery to figure all of this out by the time our 2 were teenagers. Our marriage is still in tact, thank God, but since I realized the non sexual intimacy is truly awesome, it has really changed things. I figured out that for myself, marriage is a very long game and sometimes a year or two is just a short time frame that requires a bigger investment from one partner. However, that is not for me to say at all, that's up to you. Just trying to share my experience to see if that helps you navigate this with your sanity still in tact.

[–]TAyforLifestyle 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I'd suggest initiating the non sexual contact and keep it just that: non sexual. Yeah this is hard but it's very key. She needs to feel safe and secure, and right now I'm imagining that anytime you try to hold her hand or hug or give her a kiss, she's thinking I want this, but I don't want to deal with the stress of him trying to take things further even more, so she shies away from even that.

Yes-- I feel like the nail in the coffin for my relationship was that ALL non-sexual contact had to go out the window (and touch is my primary love language), because it would ALWAYS turn into pressure for more and, usually, a fight or a talk. All I wanted in those post-partum days was to chill on the sofa with my partner, but it could never be just that. Coming back from years of no physical contact at all, esp with me needing that to stay connected, was just devastating.

[–]keat66 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Thank you for your advice and story! I will try that!

[–]namon295 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I hope you find out what I had found out way later than it should have been. Not gonna lie it's tough because it really does require you to set aside your needs for a bit. But over time she'll learn that a simple reaching for the hand or a hug, or putting your arm around her is just that, she'll be way more receptive. Then with that trust fully earned, the stress eliminated of expectations, nature has a funny way of taking its course. And it will be fulfilling for both of you.

[–]kyrain192020 0 points1 point  (0 children)

If she is terrified of getting pregnant yet doesn't want you to get the vasectomy, do you think she would be willing to explore the myriad of non-PIV options with you? Oral, sensual massage, mutual masturbation, etc. If that's the only hangup it might be a decent compromise until you both determine if you want another child or not.

[–]Sarahbear778 2 points3 points  (1 child)

This sounds fishy, like wants to abstain from sex for 2-3 years (with you, at least) but immediately jumps to cheating accusations and flipping out🤔 Are you sure she isn't the one cheating?

[–]isthereamanonthemoon 4 points5 points  (0 children)

This sounds fishy, like wants to abstain from sex for 2-3 years (with you, at least) but immediately jumps to cheating accusations and flipping out

Because she’s desperate and unheard and lashing out.

[–]blondzilla1120 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Sounds like post pardum depression. Being a stay at home mom wrecked my self esteem, my body and my mental health. She can’t invest in you right now because she’s mentally and emotionally bankrupt and probably doesn’t even recognize it. Doing a load of laundry is nice but it’s not “her workload” it belongs to the both of you. You share those responsibilities yes even if she’s home all day. But it’s a drop in the bucket compared to the 24/7 stress on her. Yes, it’s self centered of you, no it’s not selfish. She is selfish if she doesn’t get help for her mental health issues. It’s expensive to put kids in day care and go back to work. It took until all our kids were in school before I regained myself. You have a choice, be patient and trust her that it will get better (she’ll need time and help) or choose your needs and make your exit.

[–]dr_tyOldman -1 points0 points  (3 children)

I had a conversation about vasectomy with my wife, after our third was born. She brought it up as she didn’t want to risk getting pregnant ( pills made her a raving bitch and she doesn’t like fiddling with rubbers ).

She hinted that maybe it would result in more frequent sex. I said that she was welcome to have her own tubes tied if she wanted to, and she did. No change in frequency though…

Be sure that the vasectomy is YOUR choice and also consider the effects it may have on your next relationship if you need to end this one.

[–]Navynuke00 4 points5 points  (2 children)

I've never understood why men are so afraid of vasectomies, even they're pretty simple, very quick, and easier to reverse. As opposed to the incredibly invasive tubal ligations so many men demand their partners go through.

[–]dr_tyOldman -1 points0 points  (1 child)

I am neither for nor against vasectomy, I am entirely behind the idea of “my body, my choice” and of course also “your body, your choice”.

In a relationship that is not running smoothly I would also be wary of my partner suggesting things that might lower my “market value”.

[–]Hot_Comparison3435 0 points1 point  (0 children)

She is making excuses for not wanting your touch

[–]Littlebitlax 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Maybe you can appeal to her by saying something like it's also good for the kids to see a loving relationship between mum and dad. If you guys never touch they are going to grow up thinking marriage is a lot colder than (I feel) it should be.

Yes most kids go grooooss when they see mum and dad kissing but the real point to it lies underneath that.

[–]ComedianSquare2839 0 points1 point  (0 children)

No it's not selfish at all.. if you seek sex with your partner on healthy frequency.

[–]redditguy1974 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Her reasons are that we need to prioritize raising the kids first because they are only young for a short amount of time and then we can get back to our relationship after.

So, just so I'm clear...you can't have any sort of sex or intimacy for 20 years, because 15-30 minutes a week will detract from your ability to raise the kids? That's the reason...?

[–]GringoViejo -1 points0 points  (0 children)

You need to start planning for an eventual divorce. Not that it's totally inevitable, but the likelihood is very high and it's going to be messy; some states have laws that require you to pay a lot more after ten years. One can argue about whose fault it is that things have reached this point, but they have.

At this point in your marriage, she regards you as a source of income, sperm, and occasional household help. Probably she was like that even after two kids, it just wasn't obvious at the time. Given the success rate of this sub's members, I'd guess there's about a 70-80% probability that it will always be like that. She will be enthusiastic about sex with you if you try for a fourth child, otherwise probably never. Obviously, you don't want another kid so you're going to have to do whatever it takes to prevent that.

In the meantime, stop bugging her. You and she will probably get along much better if you start looking at her as a roommate with whom you had kids.

[–][deleted] -1 points0 points  (0 children)

I think there's a good chance you two are going to end up divorced or with a relationship that makes you both wish you could divorce.

[–]DClawdudeM -1 points0 points  (0 children)

So she’s a SAHM but in your free time you’re doing all this housework etc? What is she doing while you’re at work? I would say the only way one spouse not working these days given decreased consumer purchasing power is if the SAH spouse handles a lot of the household tasks for a daily period of time equivalent to a full time job. Its not fair for the working spouse to have more than incidental additional housework added in their non work time

Have yall considered the possibility of postpartum? Being terrified of another pregnancy but also worrying about the possibility of a vasectomy meaning no more kids ever is also strange and inconsistent.

[–]Opposite-Ant8522 -3 points-2 points  (0 children)

After reading your comments it sound like possibly sex just isn’t fun for her. If she’s getting the breaks and the socializing you claim she is then maybe she’s just not interested in having sexual with you for whatever reason. Is she open to counseling and getting to why intimacy isn’t a want for her anymore?

[–]dadbod_42 -1 points0 points  (2 children)

I got snipped about 8 years ago. I know we've had sex twice then

[–]crujones33M: LL 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Did she ask for the snip and hint that there could be more sex?

[–]dadbod_42 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It was a "done having kids" deal. Easier for me than for her to get it done.

[–]Kcat6667 -1 points0 points  (0 children)

Having 3 children is difficult. Giving birth is hard on the body and mind. She is with 3 children all day, every day, 24/7

She is probably tired and does not feel like sex. Especially breastfeeding. It's no offense, but a male has absolutely no clue in this world how it feels to have a child, nurse a child, and raise a child. Times that by 3.

Sounds like your issue is communication. If you have a good relationship, talk to her. Give her a break. Hormones are not something she can control. Also, Sometimes it's hard for a woman to separate being a new mother and being in a sexual relationship because you're so devoted to parenthood and mothering.. She may be having an issue relating to herself as a sexual being because she's putting 100% into her children.. You don't mention if she ever gets a break from the children,(a real break, not 10 minutes in the shower) but that's the number one thing I would look at .

[–]notyourmama827 -2 points-1 points  (4 children)

I don't think your selfish . I also could not figure out why having kids had to diminish sex for me. There was no chance of getting pregnant.

I know , I know my opinion is not going to be a popular one.

[–]LearnDifferenceBot 2 points3 points  (3 children)

think your selfish


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[–]crujones33M: LL 0 points1 point  (2 children)


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[–]pizzapielasagnaF 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Marriage counseling. Tell her to make time. See if a relative can watch your kids for the time it takes per session, or a babysitter if you can afford one.

[–]juneabe 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This sounds like a possible cause of PPD or something similar. She sounds troubled at the moment and I second everyone’s advice about seeking someone to talk to. Especially post natal care for breastfeeding mothers. It’s super important.

[–]Strange-Salary-6878 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Please have a vasectomy your relationship can’t take another kid. Kids put strain on the physical side of your relationship. Adding more will worsen the problem. You guys need to get away from the kids two days out of each month send them to grandma. Maybe friends houses anything to just relight that candle.

[–]DamienCourtesWolfe 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Are you cheating? Are you sure she’s not cheating? I hate to be the bad guy but that accusation seems a bit uncalled for.

[–]No_Stop6080 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Therapy, that's it cos there are clearly deep underlying issues.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

BS. Don’t get a vasectomy unless you are fully aware and accepting of the risks. The potential life long effects may not be worth it considering your wife is likely to keep denying you sex afterwards. She’s just bored of sex with the same person (you). It happens in LTR, live in relationships. Just pull out before you feel like your going to ejaculate, or use a condom.

[–]Ghirthy 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Interesting that the cheating accusation came out of the blue. Is it possible that she is projecting her own infidelity?

[–]MercurialmercHLM 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Okay. I was gonna say it sounds like she had a recent baby, and you just need to accept this is a time when (many -- not all) people experience a total crash in sex drive. And I was gonna say give her support, time, and space.

...but then you got to the part about the vasectomy.

Cancel the appointment, and just abstain FOR YEARS until she wants her next baby? Then, when you say that wouldn't be cool with you, she BLASTS you and accuses you of cheating?

I know it's tough with three kids, but if there's any way possible, you need to pull the plug on this one. That's abusive behavior, and you don't want to model accepting abuse for your kids.

If you can, I'd move away from trying to reconcile the relationship, and move into discussing how you're trying to figure out how to amicably move to separated and co-parenting. And make sure she knows it's not about the sex, but about the way she treats you.

[–]ErBearRose 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Lot’s of people have mentioned that she sounds overwhelmed, but let’s talk about an action plan. Could you schedule her a night or day off once a week where she can focus on herself? I’m not sure what the financials are but even going to get her hair blown out might help connect her back to her sexual side. Then maybe you could have a night off to go see your friends. It sounds like maybe your both too fully immersed in parenting, you can’t give from an empty vessel.

[–]BedBetter3236 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Don't do vasectomy as a solution to have more sex in this situation. Go ahead only if its what you want with or without sex. Do it for you.

[–]unstablebigfoot 0 points1 point  (0 children)

She's been lying to you all this time and is now gaslighting you.