A friend pointed me to your thread as your situation is similar to my own
20+ years together, but we've been in different beds/bedrooms for well over 10 years now, my quarterly "bonus" became a yearly thing, and a few years back, I too was "authorized" to seek release elsewhere (DADT which eventually kicked me in the behind as emotions got involved so we stopped)
I must admit I laughed when I read you actually bought a f-ing machine, I tried to get mine to build one with me (as we're both technically inclined, thought I'd get his interest.... he looked at me like I was nuts)
I've been in & out of therapy several times (him saying he would join yet every time we had a session, something came up and he was unable to attend)
We've talked and talked, I've cried a river of tears, begged on bended knee more times than I can count... and yes, I've even felt like a rapist (and told him such, many times)
I too can get him hard easily enough yet he has no interest in finishing
I've taken homeopathic anaphrodisiacs to kill my mojo (useless), spoken with traditional Drs about chemical castration (for myself - strongly discouraged and if taken long term: permanent as it kills brain receptors which never recoup), I've even considered physical castration and even suicide.... yes, sorry, I have... the pain being more than I can take...
Fortunately, I'm a AA member and if I got through that, I know I can get through this
All of the above took place over a 3-5 year period…. Many-many conversations through-out, many promises on his side to see Drs, get his T checked, move mountains if required… but nothing was ever done
Last October, I had a "final" discussion with him - a "shit or get off the pot" talk which I thought sunk in, finally...... but it didn't
A week or so ago, his hugs started feeling very uncomfortable (we always hugged goodnight) and he was upset, so we talked again…
He got very frustrated with me, saying I’m the one pulling back, that it was my fault…. (please note: throughout he’s stated it was my fault, I’m too horny, I am never satisfied, I’m a “pig”)
We then had a conversation which left him speechless several times as I rattled off all the tricks and ploys I’ve used over the years to get his attention, how I felt it was such a miracle, such a blessing, to finally have access to his form in a way which connected us “inside”, of having him finally “with” me, deeply…
Did/has that had any effect? Has he called anyone, done any research, made any move….
Kinda, I got flowers and roast beef dinner the next day (his idea of showing me love), I accepted, gratefully, acknowledging his effort… then next day, another conversation
From his perspective, flowers & dinner makes everything OK again…. But not from mine…
He said he’s feeling rejected, me, in another one of my don’t-piss-me-off-moods as I realize he really doesn’t get it, I told him point blank: Let me know how it feels after 10+ years then you’ll know what it’s like to be in my skin (said calmly while looking straight into his eyes – He looked away in pain)
I don’t want to hurt him…. But neither of us is “living” at this point
We’re living in the same building, work very well together as a team, don’t argue/fight on anything really, all in all a very comfortable lifestyle, no drama, steady-as-she-goes life…..
And while there is still desire within me for him, it’s easier now to quiet that voice as I know with 100% certainty that if I allow closeness of that nature, we’re only going to back to the same place again in a few months
I explained it to him this way:
Years ago, he was a welder, hated the job but had to pay the bills…..
Then he got into IT and loves it
From my perspective, our relationship has gone this path but inverse whereas it was joy, now it’s work/uncomfortable
And yes, now our conversations, all our conversations, are work/filled with tension/unilateral(his way 99% of the time with me assisting, to which I balk and causes additional friction)…..
My hopes for me is that I am able to keep the house (mine legally) with him, and we can live together as family till one of us moves on
Neither of us has someone waiting in the wings (not on my side, and I’m assuming on his either as he does say he loves me and it shows in his eyes)
We started as friends for 2 years before becoming intimate, so I’d like us to remain friends (at a minimum), and, if possible, remain family
His perspective is: all or nothing
Unfortunately his definition of “all” isn’t the same as mine… and he still hasn’t researched anything or spoke with anyone for help/guidance
I have learnt, at best, I control only myself (my actions/responses/perspectives)
That I can influence the area within 10 feet of me (co-workers, project directions, action plans… my energy overall be it positive or negative will “feed” my 10 feet)
And beyond 10 feet, I have no influence (politics, corporate direction, traffic )
So If I can only control myself, my actions… and from my perspective, I’ve tried everything I could……
And if I only influence with 10 feet of me, and I’ve communicated over an extended period my needs….
The ball is in his court… yet it’s not….
I know the price of getting his attentions, it’s tears, frustration, loneliness, feelings of abandonment…
And it’s my choice if I want to go there (not!)
But I can focus on me… try to use “I” more instead of “we”… he’s noticed, and he’s scared… yet somehow not scared enough to action
As stands, I’m slowly cleaning the house, throwing out the clutter, knowing I’m doing so because the house will eventually be sold (I’m not keeping it alone, not walking/living with his ghost once we part)
He knows this, he isn’t helping but he isn’t stopping me either
My hopes for you is you focus on yourself & your 10 feet
Find as much pleasure you can within that space of 10 feet, no matter where you are or who you are with
And most of all, remember, you are a valuable person just as you are
There is nothing wrong with you, you exist for a purpose, a good purpose, deserve to love & be loved as you understand love
Your definition of self is based on what’s in you, not what’s external, his views/needs/perspective of you or your couple
It’s hard, I know, yet I truly believe I have been given this challenge as so I will grow stronger
As to why I need to be SuperMan emotionally, I don’t know, but that’s OK
Just be careful of negative thinking, of feeling lessor-than because one person isn’t loving you as you need/want/desire
You are beautiful just as you are, many people in your life love you just as you are
Yes, this isn’t easy…..
No, unfortunately, no one has your answer for you….
But there are others, like myself, in similar situations, so you’re not alone
And for me, knowing I’m not alone, knowing I am not some kind of extraterrestrial making unreasonable demands…
It gives me strength, helps me face the day, helps me have those uncomfortable conversations
Sorry for the long post, not sure if it helps you… but knowing you too are going through this kind of mess helps me
So thank you for posting and letting me air out a few things