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Old 05-01-2012, 04:19 PM
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AnnabelMore AnnabelMore is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 2,285

"He says he needs to be reminded, but I've been trying to remind him in my own way all the time and he just doesn't see it. It's a communication disconnect in that regard."
"I'm not the greatest communicator, but I have at least repeated the concern 4-5 times bluntly over the years."

These two statements together stuck out to me. People really do communicate in different ways, and no one is a mind reader, as much as we may want them to be at times. It may be that your ways of trying to remind him are too subtle for him and that a blunt statement that there's a problem slightly less than once per year on average isn't enough for him to think it's a big enough deal to be really hurting you and threatening the foundations of your marriage.

What many of us really want, on some level, is this romantic fantasy that our partners will understand and fulfill our needs without us having to take the scary/annoying step of stating them clearly. Movies and Cosmo and other cultural tropes try to teach us that someone who really loves us will pick up on our subtle cues, that direct communication is unnecessary. But it is, in the end, just a fantasy.

What if you did as he asked and directly, lovingly but bluntly, reminded him on a regular basis that you need to hear compliments from him, that you need some romance, that you need passion. What if you were clear with him that this is not an occasional problem that then subsides for long periods of time, but rather a constant, always-aching problem that you just haven't been brave enough to spell out every time it hurts... but that you wlil try to do so from now on if that's what it takes because the alternative is leaving. That you want to know if he can do this for you, and, if he thinks he can, you will do your part to do whatever it takes (reminding, explaining, etc) to make it easy for him since it doesn't seem to come naturally.

Don't beat yourself up. You need what you need. Loving is never wrong, it's what you do about it that matters. You're not a bad person.
Me, 30ish bi female, been doing solo poly for roughly 5 years. Gia, Clay, and Pike, my partners. Davis, ex/friend/"it's complicated." Eric, Gia's husband. Bee, Gia and Eric's toddler.
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