Hi! I'll be glad to be of help with this issue.
I can imagine how frustrating and hurtful this situation must be for you. You are clearly a loving, caring, and normal woman and wife. And this is not a livable situation. He has put you in truly a terrible place, a real bind.
And this is actually the key to my answer to you that you need to consider and think about. Many men find their whole sense of manhood is disrupted, diminished, and close to lost when their career flounders or is disrupted or diminished. There's a lot of identity that males have intertwined with their careers, their bringing in money, their being financially "on top".
Your husband has taken this to a terrible extreme. You've tried enough techniques that you've described for us to be able to say that he needs professional help here, by which I mean therapy. But I understand that he for sure will not go and even if he agrees were you to place an ultimatum on him, he will hedge and delay like with talking with his doctor. And if he does go to therapy, he very well might minimize this and not bring it up and therapy will be like circling the airport and never landing.
I am so sorry you're at this juncture. It is truly painful and I wish I could call it something other than a juncture. But you are an intelligent woman and you know very well he's forcing you to make a move. He's extremely depressed most likely. But as above, you can't force treatment on him. Perhaps he would be willing to take an antidepressant as opposed to therapy. If so, you run the risk of him not telling the doctor of the sexual issue and many antidepressants have a side effect of inhibiting sexual desire. Not a good thing here. So if he is willing, make sure you can go with him to the doctor to bring this up. There are a number of antidepressants that are better in this area: Viibryd and Wellbutrin are two.
This is if he will agree to that if not therapy. But he may not agree to any help. At which point he does have the right to be depressed. But you also have the right to not be dragged down into depression alongside him. And so if you do decide to move on in your life, I certainly would support you as I am concerned for you here. I also support you if you choose to stay just as much.
Okay, I wish you the very best!
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This is Michael, the low life, negligent, abusive, forgetful, ,etc., etc., husband of Debbie. I will not say that what was written to you by Debbie is incorrect, I will say, however, it lacks some facts. The reason I retired as a full time hospice chaplain two months after I reached my 62 birthday was because I developed an eye condition that limited my ability to drive at night. As a chaplain, I was required to be on call once a week and one week end a month which, for the most part, involved going out at all hours of the night and early morning. There really aren't many other full time positions around this area, if any, for 60+ year old preachers/chaplains. Ever since retiring, I have been working as a substitute teacher for the county in which we live. Of course the pay isn't great, and I'm off all summer long, so it does cut down the spending money. Another point of contention I have with Debbie's essay, is the Valentine gift thing. Yes, it's true I did not give her a gift that year. I did give her a very lovely card, which she tore into many pieces, but regardless of that, here's what happened. Debbie and her son Aaron were planning to go to Austin on the Saturday before Valentine's Day and I was going to be home alone. My plans were to go out shopping on Saturday for a gift. Debbie, late in the week, decided she wanted my to go with the two of them, so my plans to go shopping were stymied.
One of the HUGE boiling point items Debbie has is that she is now on Medicare and pays for most of her own medical expenses. Two points, when we were first married, we discussed expenses and Debbie paid her insurance and took care of her medical expenses. That hasn't always been something that I was responsible for throughout our marriage. After I retired and attempted to get medical insurance coverage for the two of us, I was told by more than one insurance agent it would be best for Debbie to be on Medicare because she is on disability income. However, this issue comes up almost every time she gets upset with me and the history of all my failures and short comings are laid at my feet once again. These are just a couple examples of getting the facts from both parties before making such a profound diagnosis.
Now, I will not go on with any more excuses or explanations, because one thing Debbie cannot stand for me to do is to try to explain my actions or provide an excuse.
But I would like to share something with you before I close. This afternoon is a perfect example of a situation which occurs within our home more often than I would like to see. Debbie and I were planning on having our children, actually Debbie's sons, and daughter in law here on Saturday for a nice lunch and little birthday celebration. We cleaned the house together Wednesday and Thursday and went out today to do the shopping to prepare for a nice occasion on Saturday. Unfortunately, Debbie's day was hospitalized Thursday night, nothing serious, but it has upset her and caused her more concern. Her son Kevin who is 38, a recovering alcoholic, and is in need to find a place to live, is quite on Debbie's mind, as she's very worried about him. We received a call from Aaron, the 25 year old who lives in Houston, that he and his wife won't be able to come tomorrow because Aaron is very sick. Of course we are very disappointed because of this. As we tried to store everything we could in the freezer, Debbie asked me to put something in the freezer in a particular way. I suggested it be done more securely and she absolutely went bonkers. She yelled and screamed and went through the entire list of all my mistakes and shortcomings again. That's when she got on the computer and contacted you.
These outbursts are not rare. She has many worries and concerns on her mind and I know little things can set things off. That's all I'm going to say, and if you think I'm depressed and need therapy and medications, I guess I'd better look into it. Actually, I'm a pretty easy going guy who likes to just sit back and let the world roll by. I think that's one of the things that upsets Debbie at times.
Thanks for reading my little side of the story.
I can add a little now, and more when I get back from bringing yoghurt to a neighbot whose only recourse against a lung cancer death now (because he refused medical attention & it's too late for chemotherapy or radiation) is an alcaline diet and some other alternative treatments. It's not unusual for the sexual intensity among people in their 60s to decline and even cease altogether. The two of you seem to have picked opposing strategies for dealing with it: withdrawal, which Michael calls "sitting back" and boiling frustration leading to attacking the other verbally, which Debbie neglects to mention. but the two responses also mutually intensify each other.
It's also quite common for the man's retirement to trigger a marital crisis like what you're experiencing, because now the normal limitations on time spent in each other's presence are gone, and the structure of your relationship leaves no room for absense to make the heart grow fonder. So you have a vicious circle where each person's unsatisfying response triggers the other's, and each sees the log in the other's eye but not in their own.