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Elliott, LPCC, NCC
Elliott, LPCC, NCC, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 7664
Experience:  35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
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My husband and I have been married 20 yrs and thru our

Customer Question

My husband and I have been married 20 yrs and thru our marriage we never had sex on a regular basis maybe 9 or 10 times a yr. I always asked for more but it never happened. Now I find out that he's had a 3 yr affair with a woman he considers a whore he doesn't have to pay. This affair began after a vey stressful time in our lives. Before that, he held his urges rather than have sex regularly with me. What's wrong with him?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Olsen replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for writing in JustAnswer.
Let me ask you a few questions first.
How's marriage counseling going?
Does your husband have depression or anxiety?
Is there a specific question I can assist you with?
Please let me know by clicking on “Reply” and I will then craft my response.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Warm Regards,
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
My husband isn't depressed or anxious. He is narcissistic and always has been controlling. I suffer from depression because my husband does not want intimacy from me, his wife. He is afraid of intimacy and rather just have sex with a whore (coworker) than me. He calls this woman a whore and said he just used her for sex. We have three children, but he's never really wanted a sexual relationship with me. We just had sex occasionally. I thought he was gay at one point, but decided not. He started having these affairs 15 yrs into our marriage after a particularly stressful time when I was hospitalized for depression and his mom went thru alcohol rehab. Prior to that he says he controlled his sexual urges - having sex with me only when he couldn't control it. He says he was totally faithful for the 1st 15 yrs. he says he's faithful now as we deal with these issues.
Expert:  Dr. Olsen replied 4 years ago.
Hi there
Thank you for your reply.
Your husband of 20 years may have issues with intimacy.
He had a 3 year affair with his coworker for sex.
He has had some trouble being intimate with you for years.
It sounds like you have been patient with lack of intimacy in your marriage. I can imagine how sad this situation must have been to you.
Your husband may need counseling and psychotherapy to work through his deep seated problems with intimacy.
I wonder if he has had issues with his own mother as she seems to have alcohol dependency. Has he been emotionally abused or neglected by his mother with alcohol problems in childhood?
It’s true that having children will change your marriage as you are parents as well as a couple. However, his lack of interest in intimacy with his wife will be his problem to work on.
Marriage counseling is a right course of action. He may need to understand he has had issues with intimacy.
He may need counseling/psychotherapy for his issue with intimacy.
Psychodynamic therapy may be effective for him to work on his issue.
After he work on his issue via individual therapy, a couple intensive retreat may be helpful for you and your husband.
I'll pause here and await your response.
All the best,
Expert:  Elliott, LPCC, NCC replied 4 years ago.
Seeking expert counseling is a sign of strength. A personal relationship with a caring professional is proven clinically effective.

Dear friend,

If your husband is a narcissist, then he needs to get that certain gratification from being admired, loved and having his way with others. He needs "narcissistic supply" and he is getting it from this woman.

As a narcissist he has no empathy or feeling for you or anyone else. He cannot feel your pain and doesn't care about it, only how it may affect his lifestyle and comfort level.

As a narcissist/sociopath he is a polished liar, deceiver, and con-artist. He fooled you for years and is may still be lying to you about all of this.

He calls this woman a whore, to minimize or his attachment to her. She is his mistress, his lover, the one he usually goes to for loving. If he tries to imply that there is no tenderness and just a physical act, you must consider the credibility in that concept. You can be fairly certain of one thing: if he is a narcissist, then he doesn't love her either. Loving is not what he does. Control and manipulation are his goals.

It seems that you have never had a good sexual relationship, and may not expect a miracle to happen. If you FEEL a real change (not hear more empty words) then perhaps there may be an upturn, but remember that he is a liar and will fool a therapist, you, his lover, or anyone he wishes to. Many narcissists can fool a lie detector machine.

See this marriage therapy through so that you continue to make a positive effort to reconcile. If you cannot, it will be easier for you to say that you tried everything. If it does work then you will brought this marriage back from the edge.

You must ask yourself what you are willing to settle for? A continuation of a loveless life? Will this satisfy you or will you have to have more than you have had? You do have a choice as to whether or not to continue the relationship or not, if you will not be satisfied with lack of attention and passion.

Consider the alternatives. It is never too late to find someone who will adore you and find you precious, and make you feel like you have always wanted to feel. If that is what you want, then don't settle for less. We have one beautiful gift of life and we best serve our destinies by living it to the fullest, in a positive manner.

I wish you great success in your quest to find happiness and fulfillment, whatever the outcome of this relationship. This is about your life.

Warm regards,

Elliott Sewell, LPCC, NCC, CCMHC