“Michael, why are you always talking about men cheating. I have been married for 25 years to the same woman and have never cheated. But my gut says she has cheated on me and I cant get past it. Did the counseling, 2 counselors said they couldn’t help her. She wouldn’t open up. This feeling started Feb 2012. I have not slept together since Oct 14 2012. What is too long to wait for your married partner of 25 years to have sleep together again? I need to know. I am not ugly or out of shape and have a great job.”
Man, I feel for you. First off, congrats on staying committed and faithful for so long. As I say in a bunch of my stuff, “Monogamy is like flying, humans aren’t built for it but if we try really hard we can make it work.”
Let’s break your question down into handy, bite-sized portions:
1. Why am I always talking about men cheating?
Um . . . because I get a LOT of women writing in asking why men cheat, whether their men are cheating, how their men are cheating and either how to keep their men from cheating or how to get a married guy they really like to cheat and leave that “shrew” and be with a “wonderful woman like me FOREVER!!”
It seems to be a hot-button issue.
And as I said in a newsletter a few weeks ago, men and women tend to cheat in roughly the exact same numbers. It’s just that women are BETTER at cheating than guys are (men aren’t smart about it and don’t cover their tracks well.)
And women are actually cheating in much higher numbers now than they used to. It’s called “women’s liberation” or something. Women can now be just as unfaithful as men. Progress!
2. Has YOUR Wife Cheated on you?
If you were a woman writing this I would immediately get about 60 emails saying “Well, her husband MUST be cheating because her intuition is going off!!” and I’d have to write a long essay about confirmation bias and the myth of intuition.
But you’re a guy. And really, it doesn’t matter if she cheated because she did something worse. She emotionally and physically abandoned you.
Now, it’s possible that you’re waking up every day like a scared and frightened puppy and saying “Did you cheat on me? DID YOU CHEAT ON ME?” and are hovering over her like some overprotective ogre whenever other men are around.
And if that’s true, then a large portion of this this is on me.
But my gut is telling me you’re pretty nice guy who just wants to make things work.
And you’ve tried.
Heck, do you know how many women reading this would LOVE to have a guy who actually WANTED to go to counseling?
The fact that you’ve tried twice and had both professionals throw their hands up in frustration means . . . well, it kind of means you’re screwed.
There’s something bubbling in her mind and in her heart and until she makes the choice to at least TRY to open up, there’s nothing more that you can do.
Which brings us to . . .
3. How long is too long to wait to sleep together with your married partner of 25 years…
Man, 7 months is a long time.
Yes, yes, there are times you have to go longer than that without getting laid (right before and right after having a baby. That can be hell, I hear.)
But as guys we really NEED to regularly sleep with the women we love to stay connected and engaged in the relationship. And she knows that. She’s pushing you away.
So . . .
If she’s unwilling to work on the relationship or open up . . .
And your love life is a shambles . . .
And you’re at the point you’re desperately asking me for help . . .
It’s time for you to start moving on. Divorce is a consideration. An open relationship is another (if she’s not willing to sleep with you is she willing to let you do that with someone else?)
But your situation is awful and there’s really no great way out of it.