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Posted by: Frustrated | 2004/03/11

Lack of emotional fulfillment

Hi Doc. I've been married for 2 years now to a woman from a previously abusive relationship ("date-rape", beating, emotional breakdown, forced upon sexual acts of all nature etc) which lasted 6 months before she left it after she caught him in bed with her friend. We've sorted out most of her problems, guilt etc, she even enjoys sex from time to time, though never initiates it. However, in helping her become a person again I've neglected myself, and have recently realized that she does not fulfill my needs emotionally or spiritually. I cannot speak to her about the meaning of life, the deep understanding I need from her is not there. How do I teach her to help me fulfill this need? i know for sure that I do fulfill her needs in this way, and every other, without boasting. I'm sure I have no need to tell you of the effects of being her "saviour" in a sense. She has no need of friends outside our relationship, but I have a hunger for that emotional connection. I have found a friend with whom I have that connection, some who understands me the way I understand my wife, but have broken all communication with her as the danger of an "emotional affair" is not a risk I can take. So how do I teach her to fill that gap for me? Am I being arrogant? Please help me, I have a lot of patience but find myself short of motivation lately due to the above. Much appreciated.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Frustrated,
it can happen that while playing the role of "saviour" you can nable someone like her to become too dependent on you, and too isolated from other people who could bneficially form a part of her life.
I don't want to sound like a broken record ( gee, in the days of DVD's, wonder what the modern equivalent of that may be ? ) but this is the sort of situation made for marriage counselling, to enhance each of your abilities to udnerstand each other, to identify and explore what can be resiolved between you, and to recognize if there are significant issues you can't resolve, and thence to make wiser decisions about that.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Friend of a Friend | 2004/03/12

Hi Trevor.
I think your oppinion at first was great - until you became agressive about the whole situation. You must remember that you don't know Furstrated's whole story, so if somebody ask for help, don't be agressive in the reply. People don't need that. It Seems that Furstrated DOES NOT WANT TO CHEAT on his wife... he is asking ADVISE how to solve the problem at HOME. Now if that is not manly enough for you... then what is... Furstrated, you are a REAL man. Like you said - you don't need permission to cheat - that is easy to do that. You need advise on HOW to FIX. Please ignore Trevors reply and build on the positive side of the remarks that you received.

Reply to Friend of a Friend
Posted by: Trevor | 2004/03/12

Yeah, right: "My wife doesn't understand me" is a brand new excuse that you invented.

You are fooling no-one but yourself, Kiddo, if you believe that you aren't toying with the idea of cheating. The minute a third party demonstrates a behaviour or a quality that your wife does not have, and you take the time to explore it and find yourself waddling in a pity-puddle and then yell "But I don't want to cheat" then you fool yourself.

PS: You cannot post on a public forum and be selective about who you would like to have respond. This confirms my view that you want answers that you suit your purpose and you are not open to views that are opposite, disagree with your own or fit the expected and desired "poor man, poor poor man - look at how badly his wife treatrs him".

This is a public forum. Too bad if you don't like my views. Too too bad.

Ask yourself why you mentioned this interloper, this understanding woman, then you plea for help to make your wfie just like her. For as long as live you will find other women that are simpler. better. faster.

Dream on, Mr Commitment, dream on.

Reply to Trevor
Posted by: Frustrated | 2004/03/11

Thanks Kernel, I'll look into it.

Trevor, I don't need permission from strangers to cheat on my wife, and don't want it. I made a promise before God, and don't intend breaking it. Maybe you should read my postings again. I'm asking for help in dealing with this at home, on my own, without the other person. If you don't believe I'm being honest, fine, but then please keep further comments for yourself

Reply to Frustrated
Posted by: Trevor | 2004/03/11

The grass is always greener on the other side, the old saying goes. One thing that I note is that you only felt the "understanding" drought at home when you met this other person. It would appear that she knows you and your wife - has it occurrd to you that she may be role-playing to exploit your situatiion for her own benefit?

Commitment is tough, really tough. Most relationships, if they work, end up with both parties feeling as if they are doing all the giving and the other the taking. You are feeling this way now and, right now, your partner needs you more than you need her. Remember that you rescued her from a terrible situation. If you deceive her now it will be worse than the abuse she suffered before because you will confirm her suspicion that men are dogs, that all men are the same. You have come a long way with her and you both have much to be proud of so hang in there a little longer for her. You thought her worth your time and love once - are you such a bad judge that you now want to change your mind?

I note that all the women who responded think you are a darling, even though you are asking whether you should cheat on a defenceless and vulnerable woman.

Shame on you.

I do not think that you are admirable. I suspect you are looking for permission to cheat from strangers.

Reply to Trevor
Posted by: Kernel | 2004/03/11

Try attending a marriage enriching seminar together or go for yoga or meditation classes. It won't happen if you are not working on it.

At marriage enriching seminars both of you would learn what the other party needs to do to bring out the best in your marriage and how to fulfill one another's needs. Most churches have these seminars from time to time, usually over weekends at some kind of resort.

Best of luck.

Reply to Kernel
Posted by: ms advise | 2004/03/11

She is so fortunate to have you I must say.But let her know how you feel without being arrogant.You are one in a million a guy that thinks rationally before cheating their.

Puleng

Reply to ms advise
Posted by: Frustrated | 2004/03/11

Juzlisen, thanks. Co-dependancy won't become the situation, it IS the situation. As for the relationship with the other women, she knows we're good friends, and knows her well. I fear to make the full extent of our connection known to her though (though I've never stepped over the line), as that would just break her self-esteem down again, like you said. And having given my wife the chance to fill my emotional needs, I believe so, and keep trying. A friend told me "jy piep haar" and I suppose I do protect her and support her too much sometimes, but I try keep in mind that she must become her own person. She does not want to however, I think she's at a point where her dependancy on me is hurting her. But how do I get her past that? I'm so frustrated and tired of it all, I'm normally full of ideas and ways to deal with any of these problems (otherwise we'd never have married) but I've run out of steam.

Reply to Frustrated
Posted by: Juzlisen | 2004/03/11

Dear Frustrated.
your wife is lucky to have you - remember the one key to breaking any barrier is pure, honest communication.
I also find it a little odd that your wife has no need for outside friends or the outside world, that is called co dependancy almost like one cannot function without their significant other it could become a situation, just be wary...... Does your wife know about your relationship with this other woman?
I suggest you open up to your wife. Like you said you were there for her - as a partner she needs to be there for you but remember she can't be if you do not open up to her. Just be careful to not hurt her feelings by making me her think that she does not fulfill you spiritually or emotionally because have you honestly given her the chance to do so?
Good Luck.

Reply to Juzlisen

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