What should I do? Help needed...

Submitted by Mocattu on
Printer-friendly version

Hello everyone. I've been lurking around the forums and website for several months, reading around.
Now I feel it's the time to stop lurking, for I have something that is getting beyond my control.

First of all.
I am in a relationship with a guy for almost 3 years now. We were close friends first, then became a couple after we both saw we were obviously into each other when we spent a day together on my birthday.
Throughout the whole time to now, we've been close. We treat other like friends and a bit like family also, other than just lovers. Though we do hit a lot of bumps down the road(I have Inattentive ADD), we turn to each other for any kind of help and we talk about almost everything.
We're still young, around our early 20s, but we're both committed to each other.

My partner is a very sexual person. He enjoys having sex with me whenever the opportunity comes. He also gropes me a lot, and stores a lot of hentai and porn on his computer, and looks at them weekly, usually.
I have done the same, but at a much lesser level.

Alright, so...
About half a year ago, I ran into this place and read some of the articles. I was greatly surprised about the negative effects of orgasm-driven sex, and I tried sharing this with my partner. I suggested we should probably change things a bit, so we can get out of the dopamine cycle and improve our lives, even if it's at least a bit.
To the point, it didn't turn out too well...he was afraid of the change. He didn't want me to change.
So somewhere along the line, I forgot about things. As a result though, I started looking at porn at lot less.

Now just recently, I remembered about it.
I tried to come up with an idea and told him how we should try absolute abstinence for a whole month(no sex, no porn, no masturbation), to see if our bodies show any signs of withdrawal, then try to work on things from there.

He told me that it feels like quite the punishment, that I have no idea what it is like for a man not being able to release for a long period of time.
I tried to explain to him that I do, and I really do, as I read a lot. And what we were gonna try is not permanent, and we can take small steps if a whole month is too much. Like one week of it, then a break, then go for 2 weeks, and so on.

The responses I got from him were the opposite of what I expected. He just feels things will never be the same again(negatively), and he now refuses to have sex with me as it was tainted...
...And now he doesn't feel like talking, and he refuses my help. He doesn't want help from me anymore, in general. And he won't let me help as much as I express I won't listen to that.
Right now he's pissed off at me for me trying to say he's probably upset and should rest and think about it. He snapped when he thought I was telling him how he feels...

Right now I just don't know what to do. From that talk I just feel a bit broken. I feel he hates me a bit right now...
I want to help make things better for us, but I don't want to push him. And I don't know how to have him hear me out better...

I've told him about this place before and to take a look. But I don't think he has...
If some things sound confusing, I apologize. It's a bit hard for me to make things clear sometimes..

Is there anything I can do about this...?

It seems that this guy is

It seems that this guy is pre-occupied with thoughts of sex. The very fact that he holds pornography on his computer shows signs that he could be addicted. At the end of the day; its up to him to change.

Maybe you could arrange to be intimate with each other more often; but not do it in the regular way? After all...non-orgasmic intimacy is better than abstinence when you are living with somebody.


Stories like yours make me sad...partly because I have experienced similar reactions and it's very painful. It's painful because the more you try to compromise, the worse the problem gets. The fact is, none of us think we can live without orgasm...until we try it and find out differently. So there's no point in arguing with someone unwilling to make an experiment.

First a bit of housekeeping. You are enabled to blog, if you like. Here are the instructions: http://www.reuniting.info/resources/bloggers

Second, if your sweetheart may someday visit this site, should we change your user name to something he wouldn't immediately recognize? I can do this in a flash, if you like.

Third, would you like a Courtly Companion? ( http://www.reuniting.info/courtly_companions )We seem to be well blessed with guys who are struggling with the same issue your guy is, and it might do both you and them some good to have a Courtly Companion of the opposite sex as a pal to talk things over with. Abdullah's comment, for example, is probably comforting because he knows what you're dealing with. Smile (Thanks, Abdullah!) Maybe some of the men here could volunteer, if you're open to it. You would also be a help to them, because your distress strengthens their resolve in their own lives.

One strategy is to simply begin to employ the behaviors listed in this article as much as possible, even with orgasm in the mix: http://www.reuniting.info/wisdom/bonding_magic The better "fed" your sweetheart is with the type of contact that actually soothes his true needs for closeness and touch, the less threatened he'll feel about a new approach. It may take some time to see results...if any.

This also means that if he ever IS willing to take some "time off," any abstinence should be *very heavy* on these nourishing behaviors. Maybe you can also do what I did and come up with some enjoyable things that don't involve hot foreplay/orgasm that your partner likes...such as back rubs or foot massages, so he never feels deprived, even if he isn't climaxing. Also note that he will need at least two weeks away from orgasm before he starts to feel balanced. http://www.reuniting.info/science/ecstatic_exchanges_and_neurochemistry

Your instincts are good. Do not doubt them. You are right to sense that too much focus on "getting off" does decrease the emotional nourishment flowing between partners. Sucks, huh? Believe me, I tried getting around the problem with more hot sex than my partner even wanted. But that causes chaos (resentment, irritability - both mine and his - emotional distance) too, so there's really no sustainable way other than finding balance between you.

Still, you can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink. When I feel stuck over something, I try to get guidance from a higher source. It can show you the best strategy as the road twists and turns through a challenge like this. If you want to play with this idea, you can visit an online oracle. I even made one at the site, for those who want to play with it. http://www.reuniting.info/wisdom/inner_wisdom_oracle

Welcome to the site! Our caring thoughts are with you.

Thank you for the advice.

Thank you for the advice. Things have cooled down between us. I tried to hold this off for a better time and try out what the bonding magic article says first, but we ended up talking about the subject again... and as much as I didn't want to say it yet at the time, I ended up suggesting the idea of non-orgasmic intimacy instead of abstinence.

Things got a bit heated again. He says he doesn't try to reach orgasm that much in general, but he still feels that I shouldn't "take away" his need to release. He feels that I'm taking away one of the ways to relieve stress, as his life is usually stressful(mostly from an emotionally corrupt father, and my ADD-affected behavior).

He tells me that I'm not 'cool' anymore like I used to be before I found this place and tried to 'restrict' things because I'm treating all this information I found like a religion...he was very unwilling to try this, as much as I told him what the benefits are...he really believes I will change things permanently and take it away...like as if my intentions were to ruin the good in his life.
I found this place like half a year ago. Ever since I first brought the subject up then, he didn't think highly of me as he used to. In a way it's saddening...but... at least I know he doesn't want to leave me cause of this.

I really wish he understood my intentions! In our relationship, I'm more usually the one that makes decisions, mostly because I'm sensitive. But this isn't based off of sensitivity!
I don't want to make things worse for him... I want to do the complete opposite. I know what the benefits are to trying this, and I want him to feel it for himself. But he won't even let one month go by doing such. I tried to show him a couple of articles from this place that might help prove my opinions..., the two being "The big "O" isn't orgasm" and "Why does a lover pull away after sex?". He read only the first one. The 2nd one he couldn't because he said he doesn't have enough patience for reading long things...
But he really didn't get the point of the first article...as soon as he saw the small section near the bottom about low dopamine causing distress, he thought it meant that no orgasm would cause that, since orgasm itself gives it...*sigh*

I came to the conclusion that he is indeed just not ready yet,... and I understand. Though I wish he would understand me and not see me as so strict and unappealing... ...half the time during the talk I couldn't explain things right, so he got a lot of wrong messages from me I don't mean...so if anything, he's even more upset at me than the last time. How I wish I kept my mouth quiet until the right time came...*sigh*

Perhaps it is best that I do most of this on my own for now, while I still do the behaviors from the bonding magic article.
I'll keep things balanced between us in a way. We'll still be allowed to orgasm...but for me it'll be a bit less. It is the best choice I can think of for now. At least one of us should try to change for the better.

Thank you for the help.

As for the blog, I will try that out. It helps when I keep track of things, and I come here often, so it feels like a good idea.

As for username...you're right. Should I suggest what it should be changed to here or through a PM?

And for courtly companion, I'll think about it. My life is pretty hectic at the moment. But if I get a period of calm, I'll see if I'm willing.

A good short article

that men often like is "The Coolidge Effect" - http://www.reuniting.info/science/coolidge_effect

He's definitely right that he has a right to feel fulfilled and relaxed. Yet there are two ways to achieve that state. One is via orgasm. The other is via karezza - with an emphasis on those bonding behaviors. The gift of the bonding behaviors is that if someone sticks with them (and other fun nurturing activities: http://www.reuniting.info/resources/exchange_of_the_day) for a few weeks, then eventually one sees how relaxing they can be. At that point, it becomes evident that sex can be used that way, too...gently, and with lots of relaxation.

I also think some men can relate well to this book by a male doctor...although it's a bit old-fashioned: http://www.reuniting.info/karezza_method_lloyd

Similar situation

Our situations are similar in a couple ways. One way is that we have a vision of what lovemaking could be like, but we are frustrated with our inability to communicate that vision to our partners and get them to buy in. Our partners seem to be close-minded and unwilling to even try something different temporarily.

Our situations are different in that you and your partner are still sleeping together, and your communication seems somewhat open, even if his mind is closed. Smile My situation is considerably worse. See my blog, if you're curious. (Oh, wait a minute. I'm Curious. Anyways... Lol

Just brainstorming a bit, here. These ideas might or might not be useful, depending on aspects of your situation that I don't know about.

- Check out the book Love Busters. You can read the first chapter online at www.marriagebuilders.com. What I particularly recommend is the technique of making "thoughtful requests", presented in Chapter 3.

- Maybe jumping into Marnia's program of Exchanges seems much too complicated, rigid, scripted, etc. to your partner. (I can understand that.) Consider easing into the program much more gradually, maybe over a year's time (although I think it could happen much faster than that, if your partner finds the steps I've listed below enjoyable). For example,

- Adopt the idea of his night/her night. One night he gets to make love however he wants (within whatever bounds you are comfortable with). The next time, you negotiate with him, before you start, how you would like the lovemaking session to go. Just make it clear that you aren't going to rush him to give up orgasms before he is ready. There are lots of steps you can take to gradually get from conventional sex to karezza. For example:

- If he usually lasts ten minutes before having an orgasm, ask him to go for fifteen minutes. Or ask him to tell you when he wants to finish, and then ask him to lie still for five minutes (moving only enough to keep his erection) before having his orgasm.

- If he usually pulls out and goes to sleep immediately after orgasm, ask him to stay inside after orgasm and cuddle for five minutes before pulling out.

- Let him make love however he wants, except that he must pull out and take a shower before having an orgasm. After the shower, he can choose how and when to have his orgasm.

- If he's willing to wait "a while", or until morning, hold his penis in your hand, gently, without movement. It's amazingly soothing and pleasant for the man, and effortless for the woman. My wife used to do that for me, and I would go to sleep with a smile on my face.

- Make love in the morning without orgasm. Promise to let him continue or finish in the evening.

- If you keep your promises and let him continue or finish when he likes, he will build up trust and may be willing to go for longer and longer periods without orgasm. (However, Marnia warns in Peace Between the Sheets, that frequent (daily) lovemaking without orgasm can still cause separation effects, presumably due to too much dopamine production. So, if you can get your partner to hold off the orgasms for several days at a time, try to get him to space the lovemaking out to once every two or three days.)

Good luck! Please let us know how things work out. If you get your partner to try karezza, I'm particularly interested to know how you persuaded him to try it. Maybe I can try the same thing with my wife.

These are very thoughtful suggestions, Curious

However, I just want to point out that it takes about three weeks of consistency for anyone to see the benefits of this way of making love. And even then, he/she won't believe it until there is a return to conventional sex. Some times it takes several of these cycles before the person is convinced of the benefits of the change.

It might be better to say, "let's try it three weeks this way, and then three weeks the other."

Three weeks is an ETERNITY!!

I agree, it can take several weeks, and maybe several cycles of going back and forth to see the benefits of avoiding orgasms.

But the problem I see in Mocattu's situation (as well as my own!) is getting our partners to even begin to consider the possibility of maybe trying some tiny first step. (Does my frustration with my own situation show through? Lol

To a guy who hasn't actually tried it with some degree of success, the idea of going three weeks without an orgasm seems utterly impossible. Most of us have probably experienced orgasm withdrawal symptoms. For me, if I have orgasms from regular sex every day or two and then suddenly stop (especially if I'm sleeping with my wife but she becomes "unavailable"), then at day 4 after stopping I'm apt to get a very unpleasant skin-crawly sensation, and a wired feeling (like I've had too much coffee), and I'll have a terrible time getting to sleep.

(On the other hand, if I'm not having regular orgasms, and then I have one orgasm from masturbation, it's quite easy for me to get back on the abstinence wagon. There are few if any withdrawal symptoms.)

Three weeks without orgasm can seem like an impossibly large step. Even one week can seem difficult - and if the guy isn't convinced that there are major benefits - well, it's pretty clear why he isn't motivated to try!

So, my idea of making love without orgasm, taking a shower, and then deciding when and how to finish, is designed to show that it's possible to go a few minutes without orgasm. It's an achievable first step. And (in my experience) that post-shower, pre-orgasm state has a very pleasant "afterglow" feel to it. I felt no urgency to "finish".

The earlier steps of lying still together for a few minutes before or after orgasm were designed to show the guy the pleasure of lying still together, in contrast to the slam-bam style of having sex.

Once the guy can see that there are some new and different pleasures from lying still together or putting off orgasm overnight or for several days, then he may be ready to consider that maybe Marnia isn't a total nut case, maybe the material on reuniting.info makes some sense, and maybe there are some benefits to going several weeks at a time without orgasm. Smile

I appreciate what you're saying...

but, the thing that makes the three weeks bearable is engaging in constant bonding behaviors. They *also* soothe sexual frustration. Our brains are wired to find them very pleasurable...we've just forgotten that because we've become so convinced of the importance of stimulating ourselves to cope with feelings of frustration or anxiety.

I think that gentlemen will find that they can see the benefits of those bonding behaviors better if they stick with them long enough to realize their frustration declines, rather than increases. Otherwise, they're unlikely ever to believe such a thing is possible.

Although they may benefit from the small steps, and feel better even...they will continue to believe that their relief comes from their eventual orgasms. I think an "A-ha" moment is what's really needed. I don't think compromise leads to that...but I could be wrong.:-)

I keep thinking about this situation

and keep thinking my approach may work as a bridge from here to where Mocattu wants to be. More generally, my suggestions could be useful as preliminary steps to convince reluctant (male) partners to consider trying the Exchanges.

The problem in Mocattu's case is that her partner has repeatedly rejected the idea of giving up or reducing the frequency of his orgasms. Mocattu says "he is indeed just not ready yet." Well, what can she do, or what would have to happen, to make him ready? If she keeps on trying to get him to start the Exchanges, he is just going to get annoyed. She needs to try a different approach.

The first couple of steps of my suggested program - lying still together before or after orgasm - don't even require a preliminary discussion. Note, it's probably not a good idea to interrupt him if he has started his final rush to orgasm. But if she knows when he is about to start, she can hold him a bit closer and say "Honey, just lie still and hold me for a few minutes (and then you can come), ok?" How could he refuse? Smile

Or, after he has come, she can say, "I like it when you lie still while you're inside me. Can we just cuddle for a few minutes?"

I discovered karezza one morning when I started making love and didn't have time to finish before I had to get up and go to work. So I got a rain check from my wife to finish that evening. That was my "Aha" experience. I found that I didn't have to finish with an orgasm, and I felt wonderful that day, very comfortable and relaxed, not craving release. I did finish with an orgasm that night, or maybe the next morning. The experience was pleasant enough that I repeated it a few more times. I may have even made love two or three times in a row without an orgasm. I don't remember if I actually did, but I'm sure I wanted to try it.

The reason I eventually stopped making love without orgasm was that my wife's interest in sex was waning. We weren't making love as often as I wanted, and I never knew when the next time would be. So I was afraid that if I made love without orgasm, that it might be several days until the next time, and I might get uncomfortably horny while waiting.

I've told that story to show how my "shower" (or just get up an walk around for a couple minutes) exercise and following exercises could lead to an "Aha" experience for Mocattu's partner, and also point out a pitfall to avoid: if you promise him that he can have his orgasm whenever he wants (or at such-and-so time, etc.), then you've got to keep your promise. Otherwise he will lose trust and lose interest in the experiment.

I think there is a good chance he could have that "Aha" experience, and if he does, he would be a lot more willing to consider doing the Exchanges.

I'd like to hear from other men about this. Do my suggestions make as much sense to you as they do to me? Smile

I don't understand...

You said you were in a wonderful relationship and had hot sex too....why exactly did you want that to change? It looks like the ideal for me. What problems did sex cause for you, if any, or were you worried about problems in the future? Please post again.

Sorry for the absence.

Been busy with other things. I'll try to reply the best I can.

As of right now, things are calm, and still having intercourse when the opportunity comes. But we haven't quite gotten onto the subject since then. Hopefully it stays that way until I can hopefully make things better for us and have him more willing..

To CuriousFellow: Wow. Our situations do have similarities.
In our relationship, my ADD plays an immense role in most of our conflicts with each other. It's possibly one of the main culprits, as the most important thing to us is communication.
I have great difficulty in getting my point across sometimes. It's like I either have too much going on in my head that my point is all jumbled up in the mental mess, or I have my tongue tied. As a result, I either can't finish what I have to say or I say it completely wrong, and at times it makes things worse. And this frustrates him and causes him to lose his patience with me a lot.

You have quite a few suggestions. I understand what you're getting at. Some I'll take consideration as I'm trying to get a good set of ideas going(want to get to blogging soon..). My partner greatly enjoys relaxation.

To Someone:
I thought about that before I considered trying to change things.. We're both close and the sex we have together is pleasant.
2 reasons.

1, I have been noticing a strange cycle that occurs after we both reach orgasm. We're both more easily aggravated after orgasm, and even more so if we orgasm often. I just couldn't help but feel this odd "distance" between us that stays around for a while after sex.
And when we don't orgasm for a while, or take things in a more relaxation-oriented approach when we get together, things are much better, much more calm.

2, I worry about the future. I want things between he and I to last, and not have anything come between us, especially if it can be prevented...
Even he expressed this worry. He knows that today, a lot of couples are breaking up, even after they've had many good years together. He talked to me about this recently in fact, along the lines of:
"I don't understand. Some people have it so good and been together for a long time, many longer than we've been together. Yet things just get severed over time due to too many fights or affairs, especially after marriage..."
We both don't want that to happen.
Sadly though, what to do about it is where we both have differences...

We both have it good right now, yes. But what gets to me is, how long will it last really, if we keep things going as it is..?

Nice to hear from you

Thanks for checking in and giving us an update. I've really been eagerly waiting for that. Smile

I have great difficulty in getting my point across sometimes. It's like I either have too much going on in my head that my point is all jumbled up in the mental mess, or I have my tongue tied. As a result, I either can't finish what I have to say or I say it completely wrong, and at times it makes things worse. And this frustrates him and causes him to lose his patience with me a lot.

I understand completely! Sometimes someone will say something to me that simultaneously triggers several different responses that I want to make. I have to choose one, and by the time I've chosen, the other person may have already moved on to some other topic, so often I end up not expressing any of my thoughts (to my wife, who tends to dominate our "conversations"), or just expressing one of my thoughts (to a friend or colleague).

Fortunately, you and I are both pretty good at expressing ourselves in writing. Perhaps some of the things you have difficulty explaining verbally (such as your numbered points above), you could explain to your partner in an email.

I've been reading that wonderful Love Busters book I mentioned previously. In Chapter 6, Harley recommends a Policy of Radical Honesty. Part of that policy involves telling your partner about your negative and positive reactions to what they do or say. I never used to do that, but recently I have started doing that sometimes. For example, recently my wife has been nagging me (often in an unpleasant and threatening manner) to do something that I've been putting off for a long time. Last week, one morning she simply asked me in a calm, non-threatening way how I was coming on the project, and I gave her an equally calm reply. She then mentioned something else she wanted me to take care of. She was in such a pleasant mood that I was actually somewhat enjoying the conversation, and I asked for more details about what she wanted me to do! The conversation came to an end and I prepared to go to work, while marvelling to myself at how pleasant the preceeding conversation had been. So I went and found my wife and said something like "Thanks for being so pleasant this morning. When you talk that way, I'm very willing to talk to you and cooperate with you." Unfortunately, her mood had changed by then, and she made some sort of snippy reply. So I just sighed and said, "And when you talk like that, I don't like being around you." And I left for work. But anyway, I'm glad I said what I did, giving her feedback about how I felt about her pleasant and not-so-pleasant interactions with me.

I've also explained to friends how something they said triggered several thoughts in my mind simultaneously, and how I had only expressed one of those thoughts earlier. I was then able to express one of the other ideas and let go of it - stop thinking about it.

Apparently, I'm developing more awareness of what is happening in a conversation from a high level viewpoint. Perhaps in the future, when several ideas compete for my attention simultaneously, I'll be able to interrupt and say something like, "You've just given me several ideas, let me think about this for a minute." And be able to stall for time until I can sort the ideas out. Then I'll be able to put my attention back on what the other person is saying.

I'm looking forward to more updates from you. Best wishes. -- CF