My story continued – Marriage and turning off my sexual feelings
Continued from My story – early years:
The early years of marriage and turning off my sexual feelings:
When I decided I needed to stop the cycles of masturbation and guilt, I got up the courage to confess to the Bishop in order to try to stop this behavior. After telling him what I did, he looked at me in shock and said, “I didn’t know girls did that!” I was horrified and ashamed. This embarrassing experience, along with many other experiences contributed to my development of what is often referred to as the “Good Girl Syndrome”, or in other words a faulty thinking pattern that good girls aren’t sexual. To the dismay of my husband – as the years progressed, I slowly began an unconscious descent into thinking that being sexual, feeling sexual, seeking pleasure during sex was wrong – and I began to turn my sexuality off. During those years, I felt I could not be both spiritual and sexual – so I turned my efforts towards trying to be more spiritual and sex just did not seem to fit well in the equation – or so I thought!
More and more I began to turn my husband away, and as I denied my sexuality, I began to feel his desires to be sexual were not only unimportant, but actually quite annoying. I felt he was being lustful and needed to learn self-control. I had no comprehension about the benefits of sex in a marriage – I didn’t think there were any. Our intimate relationship deteriorated and eventually my husband found himself living in a sexual desert. When we did have sex, it was cold and clinical. Rarely, I allowed him to pleasure me with his hands, but the faulty mind reel that played in my head made the pleasure of orgasms fade quickly. Sex felt wrong! It did not make me feel closer to my husband.
I desired emotional intimacy with him and to be held and cherished. But I soon found that any physical contact caused him to want more and he would try to push any physical contact into sex. So I pushed him away more and more. He would get angry, he sulked, he groped, he tried to do things to make me happy, hoping to get rewarded. Nothing worked. When I felt he was pulling away completely, I would get scared and I would allow him to have sex to appease him – pity sex as I call it now. Then we would begin the cycle again. I would deny, etc. it was a vicious cycle. I don’t know why my husband stayed with me – but he did, mostly because of the children and because of his religious beliefs that one should not seek divorce. He was not happy in the marriage, but he tried to make the best of it anyways – and this destructive sexual cycle lasted over 25 years.