Didn’t Force The Issue. Waited Two Years. Now What?

Reader:  In the 2011 Primer you say that if you are in Phase 3 and have a Sex Rank advantage, and things still aren’t getting better, that you must push to Phase 4 within a few months, or be stuck in a sort of Phase 1. My question is – what should you do if you’ve been in that Phase 3/1 for a very long time?

My wife and I started dating about 12 years ago. We started out with me having probably a half point advantage in Sex Rank. We moved in together about 6 years in, after school and traveling. The rest of the story you’ve probably heard a thousand times. I went beta, sex took a nosedive, and we got into a 2-3 times per month routine while I suffered in silence and eventually just got used to it.

We got engaged a few years ago, and shortly afterwards I went through a few personal events that prompted a period of introspection and evaluation. I read a lot of evolutionary psychology books and began changing my life in ways that mirror your Male Action Plan. Over the year I dropped 30 pounds and got into the best shape of my life, took charge at work and earned a promotion and a raise, quit smoking, learned to cook, etc. I stepped into an alpha role socially and professionally, and started getting lots of unwanted female attention. As far as I could tell, my fiancé noticed none of it. I convinced myself that it was just because of the stress of planning the wedding, etc. and just kept on the same path, hoping for the best.

At this point I’d established a good point and a half Sex Rank advantage and was in what I suppose you might call Phase 3 of your MAP. I know now that my mistake was probably that I didn’t push it into Phase 4, and just continued accepting drip-fed sex and a general lack of interest in me without much complaint.

My question is how does one recover from this? I know that, according to the MAP, I’ve been stuck in that sort of Phase 3 / Phase 1 for just about 2 years. I really have no Sex Rank leverage at all because after accepting things as they are for so long, she’s got no fear of losing me. I’m quite sure that jumping into Phase 4 at this point and saying that I’d consider leaving her if things don’t change will be pretty volcanic. This is fine, but I don’t want to set us up to fail. What’s an MMSL reader to do if all my MAP work has gone to waste and I’m back to square one?

Athol:  I’m not sure there is a way to make it undramatic when you push to Phase Four, but I agree if you slam her with Phase Four out of the blue, she’ll react less well than she may otherwise.

My suggestion would be to tell her you’re not happy and why, explicitly not mentioning a threat of divorce, and take it from there. You will very likely get a short spike of sexual attention and then have it revert back to the baseline amount of sex. You can repeat “the talk”  a couple times over a couple of months. After that, the topic will be in the air and she’ll have had a proper heads up and react with less shock to the Phase Four proper.

Also while you do this, ensure that you really are acting like Phase Three is in effect. You’re looking good and acting like a guy that can pull other women should be wish to.

Though I do caution you that her lack of response after you self-improved a great deal is not the best indication of overall success with this. She may or may not respond to Phase Four and beyond. Unfortunately you married her when everything was sexually lackluster, so that’s going to be something she brings up as a defense. “Why are you ruining everything now? We aren’t doing anything different than before we got married? Why did you marry me if you were going to blow it all up like this?” and yada yada yada framing you as the bad guy.

She just may not be that into you.

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Comments

  1. Trimegistus says:

    The trouble is, he’s not trying to restore their sex life, he’s trying to improve it from a long-established baseline. That’s going to take some work.

    May I suggest taking the wife on a vacation without the kids, having wild morning sex every day, and then once you return to everyday life trying to maintain that level of activity?

    Athol: I have a more general question which seems to be a common thread in just about all of MMSL. Why do women — married, attached women with (presumably) no medical problems — still resist the idea of having sex with their husbands? Act like it’s somehow giving in?

  2. Suz says:

    Trimegistus:

    ” still resist the idea of having sex with their husbands? Act like it’s somehow giving in?”

    Deeply ingrained feminism, of course. Grrrlz are trained to use sex for two purposes: for their own gratification/affirmation, and to manipulate men. A husband who controls the couple’s sex life, is not being properly managed. Can’t have that now, can we? Better to have a lousy marriage to a weenie (and divorce him later) than to let a MAN be in charge.

  3. Shanna says:

    First off – YES, the vacation idea is a good one. That has helped me kick-start things with my husband numerous times. Then we come home and I’m able to keep the momentum going. (I’m the high-desire person.)

    “Why do married women resist the idea of having sex with their husbands?”

    I don’t resist my husbands advances unless I’m deathly ill, so I’ll answer from what I know of all my female friends and relatives.

    Sure, socially conditioned feminism plays a part in the entitlement process of her feelings seem more important than his.
    Women don’t understand how important sex is to a man. They don’t understand how he NEEDS it psychologically. They think of it as the equivalent of some kind of luxury like getting your feet rubbed.
    It becomes one more chore they have to do for somebody – especially if they’ve been meeting the needs of kids all day or people at work.
    Most women don’t understand that their arousal is REACTIONARY. They don’t feel “in the mood” so they make themselves unavailable. If they understood they are only going to be automatically in-the-mood a few days a month (based on their ovulation cycle), they might go into sex with a more positive attitude.
    Odds are, your husband will help you get in-the-mood once you two get started!

    So, to the Original Post Person, I would ask:
    1) How many times a week are you approaching her and in what way? Are you seducing her or just saying “Babe, let’s do it.”
    2) What is her exact excuse in not wanting to? (My guess is the old “I’m tired/or don’t feel like it.”)
    3) Do you really know how to get her going? Like if you went to bed and she was not aroused at all, could you get her there?

    Yeah, do a modified Phase 4, as Athol suggests, and DON’T threaten divorce at this time.
    Let her know that you want more of HER not just more of doing IT. Let her know how important your sex life is to you because it makes you feel good about the marriage, the future and life in general . And you need more of that. If she loves you, she will respond to this kind of request.

  4. Flipper says:

    I have the same problem. We have sex probably 4-7 times per month nowadays and I’ve been running the Map for a year or so. She stumbled onto my reading the blog back last spring and she’s mocked me for it. But I did stand to her shit test, asking her quite bluntly what her problem is with me becoming a better man. Stumped her. Obviously the answer is that it disturbs her power over me and makes me a more attractive target to other women, but the hamster can spin and spin and never arrive at that answer. I’ve noticed that I need to run the MAP on the sly a bit which I’ve been doing.

  5. The way it sounds, this fella didn’t up the alpha though he may have improved himself and his sex rank. That’s all well and good, but if he’s not being more aggressive, changing his “baseline” behavior toward his wife, it’s sort of all for naught. I know a number of men who are obviously a higher sex rank than their wives, but are totally submissive and beta so why should the wife change? Dude needs to take charge and start acting confident, even drop covert stuff about how other women find him attractive or how he’s going to lunch with his new girlfriend with a wink and smirk) or SOMETHING to shake things up.

    My experience was that I started acting super confident and cocky, wearing new underwear and some new clothes and my wife was SPOOKED! She thought I was having an affair or something. Along with having some long talks about how infrequent sex was unacceptable, how I wasn’t going to accept a boring marriage and being more aggressive and alpha in how I approached sex (instead of begging for it or taking scraps) all resulted in a big improvement. Also, make sure you are initiating as it’s standard for the wife to let the man initiate, every time is ok, just accept it.

  6. Flipper says:

    To the OP, you are running the MAP but seem to have a serious case of oneitis. If she doesn’t care and you are truly her superior in sex rank by a good margin, cut bait because she’s simply a dead fish. Not sure if kids are involved but you need to upset the apple cart here. Otherwise you are going to be fighting this same fight in 5, 10, and 20 years. Some day looking back on the mistake you made you’ll regret it. I’m in a similar boat. I’m going to push forward and become a harder, faster, leaner, meaner version of myself. If that isn’t good enough for her, splitsville.

  7. Flipper says:

    @ average married guy – right on. My best friend is 6’8″ and good looking (probably nailed 50 women back in the day), he pulls in $100k per year. His wife is nice but short, heavy, and a drama queen. And yet he stays. He was raised with 5 sisters and does everything around the house, cooking, laundry, cleaning you name it. And he works 60 hours a week. He never complains but I know he isn’t truly fulfilled. He’s just tough.

  8. Phinn says:

    It’s true — having a higher Sex Rank is not automatically equivalent to being sufficiently alpha with women.

    Some guys just have mommy issues. I’m not belittling it — a lot of men have no idea how much they defer and supplicate to women. They have been so deeply conditioned (typically by their mother and father) to put a woman’s preferences above his own, at all times, and that doing so is what women want.

    It comes as a constant and frustrating surprise to find that all of your efforts at giving a woman what she says she wants results in her resenting (and ultimately despising) you. Such men end up in a state of perpetual confusion, and end up believing that What Women Want is a grand, impenetrable mystery, like finding the lost city of Atlantis.

    It’s not a mystery at all. It’s just that these men don’t want to face an uncomfortable fact — their woman wants a better man. A better man is one who has other options.

    Sex Rank is your Sexual MARKET Value. The whole idea behind a market is that every buyer and every seller has ALTERNATIVES. I don’t mean constantly telling your wife/GF/fiancee that you have one foot out the door. I mean flirting with women, or otherwise FINDING A WAY to let your woman SEE YOU get attention from other women. You can’t just tell her that you have potential alternate mates. She has to see this for herself.

    The key to the MAP is competition. It’s all a way for you to make her realize that she has to WORK in order to COMPETE with other women for your love, attention and commitment.

    Flipper is completely correct — if your woman knows you would never leave her, she will increasingly take you for granted.

  9. One other thing. My wife is going to be going off the IUD (hormonal) after five years and recently she’s basically stated she doesn’t have a libido. She’s accommodating in the bedroom and enjoys the sex we have but the desire does not come from within. In researching birth control options recently, I read a lot about the type my wife is on as well as other hormonal types. There are a lot of women who have noted that their libidos dropped significantly upon going on hormonal birth control and for a large number of them have resulted in marriage issues. Not saying this is the case, but Athol has noted this in past posts as well.

  10. FeralFelis says:

    @AMG-
    By jove, you may be onto something there!
    I had a tubal ligtation very early in life, so throughout my 30s I never had to take hormonal birth control and never experienced a dip in my libido.
    I think you have a great idea to investigate!

  11. Mike says:

    I am in a similar situation as the reader in this post. I chalk it up to my wife having an overly estimated sex rank due to her feminist outlook. What am I trying that seems to be working? The Neg-Hit as needed. I just mention her sex rank flaw in a humorous way. Example: I love the wrinkles around your eyes when you smile. Your butt is not big, Sir Mix A Lot would love it. You have a nice hourglass figure even though I can feel your folds of fat. You are still kind of cute for a 50 year old.

    Try it even though your inner chump is screaming, don’t do it. Do it even if it seems cruel (that is why it has to be said with a funny evil smirk) . Watch her reaction. Mine shows puzzlement, then seems to ignore it. But her attitude sure changes. My sex frequency is up to 5 to 6 times a week, she is much more productive around the house and yard, and is very submissive to me.

    I am still pushing for hotter sex. I will use the Neg to get it, then go to Phase 4 if it ceases working.

  12. Ben says:

    @Suz:

    Your explanation is probably part of the problem for many women, but I don’t think it tells the whole story. After all, if sex is to be used for gratification, why wouldn’t she want gratifying sex with an attractive (read: high Sex Rank) husband? I’d propose two alternate explanations to be considered in addition to and/or alongside the one you describe:

    1.) Being attractive IN GENERAL may not be the same as being attractive TO HER. Essentially a restatement of what Athol said above: at some point, you have to consider the possibility that she’s just not that into you and married you for reasons other than sexual attraction (high Beta qualities, good father / provider, or she just plain didn’t think she could do any better and settled rather than being alone). It’s not a fun possibility to consider, but it’s possible that the OP is an objective Sex Rank 7 or 8, but only a 5 or 6 in his wife’s eyes.

    2.) She may have a low libido in general, either because of hormonal birth control, natural changes as she gets older, or because that’s just the way she is.

    Here’s what I’m interested in:

    “We moved in together about 6 years in, after school and traveling. The rest of the story you’ve probably heard a thousand times. I went beta, sex took a nosedive, and we got into a 2-3 times per month routine while I suffered in silence and eventually just got used to it.”

    How was the sex life during those first six years, before you moved in together? Is that the baseline you’re trying to get back to? Or was sex infrequent during those years too, and you just had other excuses for it (too busy with school, were apart for long periods because of travel)? If there was a time in the relationship when sex was frequent and good, that’s some evidence that there’s some kind of baseline attraction that you can recapture. If not, well… see explanations 1 and 2 above.

  13. MCM says:

    @AMG My wife has been on that for years and low and behold, here I am a regular reader of this blog.

    I’ve been doing the MAP for just two months but the sex has increased by a factor of 4. Last two nights she has been super busy yet I still made my move last night and was rejected because “I’m have too much work to do.” She does, we’re leaving on a trip tomorrow and she’s still swamped with work, so I didn’t push the issue and in the most nonchalant way possible, changed the subject to something else. Yet I feel that now her defense is up and any further “moves” will put it up even further. And the kid is coming with us on the trip so there will be ZERO alone time. What’s a man to do?

  14. I'm a man says:

    @Shanna – great comment, thanks
    – do you know how exhausting it is to try and have sex with someone who isn’t interested? Much of the thrill is mutual attraction.

    You said “Let her know that you want more of HER not just more of doing IT. Let her know how important your sex life is to you because it makes you feel good about the marriage, the future and life in general ”
    - This beta crap doesn’t work. Probably got me laid once.

  15. Polly says:

    Why do women resist sex with their husbands? Here is one possibility that hasn’t been raised yet: they don’t feel an emotional connection with their men.
    The woman believed that as the years wore on there would be more talk of hopes, dreams, fears, beliefs, desires,etc. and yet, if she mentions her wish for greater connection, her husband pooh-poohs that kind of talk. To him, the relationship is sleeping together, living under the same roof, vacations together and getting estimates on how much it will cost the fix the rotting pillars on the front porch. She wants something *more* and his response is “what the hell are you yammering about?”. Having sex with someone who feels increasingly like a stranger can be embarrassing at best and degrading at worst. She avoids it more and more in order to try to keep the humiliation at bay. Women with high libidos probably don’t have this problem but with an average or lower female libido, having sex in itself is not at all desirable, although having sex with a specific, known and loved person is desirable. It doesn’t matter how good he is in bed if he is not being intimate with her in a way that she recognizes as intimacy.

  16. Flipper says:

    Polly, you really need to read Athol’s book. Following your advice is what got most of the men on here into their respective situations.

  17. Shanna says:

    @I’m a man
    “– do you know how exhausting it is to try and have sex with someone who isn’t interested? Much of the thrill is mutual attraction. ”
    Yes, actually I do.
    I’m the high desire one in our marriage. My husband is a workaholic.
    I find if I seduce him regularly for a bit of time, he gets into the “habit” of us doing it regularly and my workload decreases. :)

    About my suggestion being beta:
    Yes, it kind of is. But it takes away her trump card of saying “Don’t you care about how *i* feel?”
    Because if she rejects him sexually after he has laid it all out like that, there’s no denying she’s completely disregarding HIS feelings.

  18. Polly says:

    Flipper, I have read 95 percent of the blog, but you are right that I should read the book. Maybe it could fill in the big blank concerning intimacy. I have no doubt that if a husband does the alpha bedroom moves, he will get more sex. How that improves the quality of the relationship in the wife’s mind is what I question. My husband doesn’t read here but if he did and he upped the Alpha and demanded more sex, we would have more sex, no question. However, my husband hasn’t spoken to me about any subject of substance for nine years because he “has nothing to say”. I didn’t nag about it either. I actually waited seven years to ask him what he has been thinking about all those years and he told me he has not been thinking about anything. A man may experience closeness through proximity and sex but some women experience it through talking, verbal exchange and mutual empathy. But again, I do see that for pure quantity of sex, Athol’s alpha moves are the way to go. I was just giving a perspective on why wives avoid sex.

  19. Jane says:

    Polly – have you read Boteach’s stuff? Lots of great stuff in his work about creating intamacy that might be helpful for you if that’s what’s lacking.

  20. Polly says:

    Thanks, Jane. I will look at his articles.

  21. @ Polly: I agree with what you’re saying. Cutting cable and watching TV much less, I find that my wife and I have much more alone time on the couch at night, emotionally connecting about odds and ends of our life on a more frequent basis. Sex has been more frequent and better quality too. Coincidence? I know we both are enjoying this emotional connection, which was sort of lost there for awhile. I think you’re on to something.. if the rest of your Alpha house is in order, you can add this beta behavior and improve as well.

  22. Shanna says:

    @Polly,
    I would ask you – is he a man of many words with others and just not you? Or is he rather stoic in all his relationships?

    I would definitely read Athol’s book. Another good read is “The 5 love languages” and “His Needs/Her Needs”.
    These 3 books really helped me understand my husband more clearly.

  23. PocketAces says:

    MCM:
    “And the kid is coming with us on the trip so there will be ZERO alone time. What’s a man to do?”

    Hit the shower together. Bring lube.

  24. MCM says:

    Yep. Shower is exactly my plan!!

    Didn’t think about the lube though….

  25. Ben says:

    @Polly:

    Athol refers to things that help build an emotional bond– what I’m assuming you’re referring to by “intimacy”– as “Beta” behaviors. There are those in the comments section who poo-poo Beta either because they got used to the term elsewhere, where it’s sometimes used differently (as the opposite of Alpha and to be avoided), or because they feel they’ve done their due diligence in that area but still aren’t getting the desired results, but I’ve always known Athol to be very careful to define it as a necessary complement to Alpha and a good thing.

  26. Ben says:

    @MCM:

    Always bring lube. Especially in the shower, where water has a bad habit of washing away natural lube.

    But seriously. Always. There’s a whole post about it.

    http://marriedmansexlife.com/2010/11/sexy-move-theres-always-time-for-lubrication/

  27. GC says:

    “Why do women — married, attached women with (presumably) no medical problems — still resist the idea of having sex with their husbands?”

    I’m sure that some women are resisting as a way to control the marriage or because they don’t feel connected to their husbands, but for many women that is not the case. It just takes (in general) more effort – on the part of both the husband and the wife – for women to become aroused and interested. Compared to men, women have less testosterone, respond much less to visual stimulation, and don’t have a noticeable physical reaction that reminds them that they want to have sex! So women can very easily go through their entire day and not think of sex one time – even women who are attracted to their husbands and want to have sex with them! Women need to be aware of this and do/think about things that get them in the mood. Men need to be aware of this and do things to help their wives get in the mood. I know a lot of guys would like for it to be easier and for their wives to react and act the same way they do, but it just doesn’t work that way (in most cases). Guys, running the MAP is great and should improve your wife’s attraction to you, but you need to figure out what else she needs to help her get in the mood (sexts during the day, new lingerie, sexy talk,a break from the kids, time to unwind in the evening, whatever it takes). Ladies, figure out what helps you get in the mood and do it (or ask your husband to do it) – having repeated enjoyable sexual encounters is fun, will make your husband happy, and will increase your interest in future encounters. I know from experience that a couple can improve this situation, but they both have to be willing to work on. (All of this assumes no medical or hormonal problems and no history of sexual abuse. Those are separate, difficult issues that need to be addressed with the help of a professional.)

  28. mgwk says:

    @AMG, MCM –

    If non-hormonal permanent birth control is on the menu, you might look into hysteroscopic sterilization. It’s a minimally-invasive procedure that accomplishes the same thing as tubal ligation. The product the ob/gyn uses is “Essure”. Seems to have fewer potential side effects than going for the male side.

    @ Polly –

    Everyone’s mileage varies, but, often enough, Mrs. mgwk has channeled your views over the years. Finding MMSL and the red pill has made me less responsive, in that it helped me see that no wife is ever going to get the perfect husband, as seen from her self-centered point of view (and the converse, of course). In my experience, being beta-responsive to her complaints didn’t advance the relationship — the specifics changed but the I-deserve-better theme remained the same.

    I’m up front about the what and why of the MAP. Sometimes she’s moved to see me working to get our marriage back, other times not so much. Meanwhile I’ve challenged her to “train me” — to figure out how she might get me to Yes as far as her desires. Nagging is unlikely to be key, while great outcomes will probably take some effort and commitment. Anyway, a slow process, but movement in the right direction, from each of our points of view.

  29. Rachael says:

    MCM
    “And the kid is coming with us on the trip so there will be ZERO alone time. What’s a man to do?”

    I don’t understand this, we have 4 kids and make our alone time a priority, even on holidays. The kids are aged 5 – 11, and they have a bed time, no matter what- they are in bed at bedtime. As they get older they start to push this boundary a bit, ‘I wanna stay up, why can’t I stay up?’ and we tell them that it’s because it’s our time now, it’s adult time and Mum and Dad need alone time together.
    Not only that, they know that Saturday mornings mum and dad like to ‘sleep in’…God help them if they open our bedroom door before we do. But then they’re old enough to watch cartoons and make their own breakfast without any hassles. It’s not always for sex either, it’s just our time for connection, to do whatever we feel like without interruption.
    If your child is younger and they have good sleeping habits it’s even easier. There’s always nap time.
    Teach your children that you priorities your marriage and that your adult time is non negotiable. Do i need to say that this is obviously not to the exclusion of their own needs? I hope not. I hope ppl realise that prioritising your relationship doesnt equal abandonment or of your children.
    We do, and our kids actually like the fact that we like each other :)

  30. horseman says:

    Why they Dont want it. Look at how they self identify. Read any personal ad. always starts with I am a mother of…
    Also the approach to marriage. most say at twenty they “want a husband and a house and kids.” the man is a means to that end. he wasnt Mr right he was Mr right out of a window of twenty to thirty years. men say something like i want a wife or to meet the right one. marriage is a means to the end…her.
    rare is the man at twenty who says i wamnt to be married as a way of self identifying.
    So as marriage amd kids pull people into self idenrified roles it reinforces this. at thirty she says first i am a mother with a husband. he says Im a husband with kids.
    see the difference.
    so sexual desire allowing for reactivity etc. is still seen as the goal for men but as a means for women.
    i am way generalizing what with idiots on both sexes, biochem drives etc. but as socialization I think the unconcious thinking triggers women away from sex as a pure indulgence. explain surveys of 50% of women would take chocolate over sex. same oxytocin release but one is no emotion.
    veraus surveys of guys who have affairs for emotion missing from oxytocin bonding over a nsa sexual relationship.
    I always say look at someones behavouir when thwy are ungaurded and cando as they please.that says what they want without thw hampster even waking up.

  31. horseman says:

    I also think that motherhood has something to do with it. The breastfeeding, cuddling, physical contact of the baby with the mother provides the dopamine and to some extent oxytocin that physical contact with the husband has. So biochemically she gets for about two years a large amount of bonding chemicals that both fulfill her and emotionally bond her to the child. Its not concious but it is a deflection from what would otherwise be the only source, the husband.
    Men do bond through physical contact with the children but even in an enlightened male it is never the same amount as the female. Hence the stronger role identification with motherhood as the centre of the Id as opposed to fatherhood in the male.
    I think one of the worst things males and females do is not strengthen their self identification as husband/wife/partner. Ask anyone “who are you”. Males are their job or their accomplishment, women are their children or social circle. Less than a quarter likely say husband wife. That self identification reflects who or what they are emotionally bonded to.
    So if you take out sex as manipulation, hormonal male need etc. but look at it as a pure bonding exercise it takes a back seat to everything else. Instead we should look at it as “I feel crappy about myself, what would make me feel better…dopamine and oxytocin. Where do I get it. Chocolate? Play with the kids? The redhead in accounting. NO. I CHOOSE to get it from my partner.
    And for either sex, and this I dont get, why turn down the person who is CHOOSING you over all the other sources for the chemical that will make them feel better. Should I say no to my child who needs an asprin for a headache as only I can give him medicine? No I give it to him because I love him.
    Also they are CHOOSING you …how much more self image do you need. My wife was 180+ at our wedding. I know she is big and always will be but I CHOOSE her. Why now does she avoid me because she thinks i SHOULD think she is fat. I see her different. I really dont get how all the media and socialization can override someone in front of you saying they WANT you. And you get a nice little biochemical buzz to boot.

  32. Rachael says:

    Horseman
    “And for either sex, and this I dont get, why turn down the person who is CHOOSING you over all the other sources for the chemical that will make them feel better. Should I say no to my child who needs an asprin for a headache as only I can give him medicine? No I give it to him because I love him.”

    Good point. I don’t get that either. I WANT to give my husband everything he wants, wether that’s sex or clean shirts or a night out with the boys. I love him and want him to be happy. Isn’t that the vow you make when you get married? To do everything in your power to make each other happy and fulfilled?

    “Why now does she avoid me because she thinks i SHOULD think she is fat. ”
    Being a woman, I do get this one. If you are saying you don’t believe that she is fat, she thinks your lying to her. Fat is fat, there’s no denying it, doesn’t mean you don’t find her attractive, doesn’t mean you don’t love her body, but you denying that she is fat – when she clearly is – means that you are not being honest with her. You lose credibility. Suddenly she doesn’t know if she can trust your judgement.
    Maybe instead of saying ‘your not fat’ lose that word from your vocab all together. Say, ‘I love your body’ ” your ass is beautiful” that way the statement is about you appreciating her body and not about you denying what is obvious. I know bc I’ve been there.
    Maybe you’ve tried all this, I don’t know, just a thought :)

  33. Jaad says:

    @Polly: Your post describes to a ‘T’ what my wife of 3 years has said and been doing for a year now. Unfortunately for me I have very little knowledge on how to increase this ‘emotional connection’ thing she demands.

  34. Rachael says:

    On the birth control front. If we’re talking permanent options – vasectomy is a good one. It’s a very short proceedure, relatively cheap ($2500, I’m in Australia, so not sure about other countries), recovery time is only a day or two and there’s no hormonal implications at all.
    After the birth of our 4th child we did this and it was the best decision we ever made. No pill, no condoms, no pregnancy scares. In fact it’s a non issue in our house now. Best $2500 we ever spent :)

  35. H says:

    Engaging her emotionally is important. Showing her you care isn’t. It’s unattractive.

  36. horseman says:

    @Polly

    We Dont use the word fat. I say she looks great try the 10 second kiss nada. It was there at the start amd got progressively worse as she added age to her body issues. Nowafter years of the map it is over but my point is a question of generalities not my specifics. for either sex. would you as a woman wreject your mae when hmisses a promotion

  37. horseman says:

    sorry damn phone. question. would you as a woman reject him after losing a promtion because he thinks you should think he is a bad provider. in this economy job status hits us as hard as body image hits women. I just Dont get the whole reject the one who lives to comfort you rather than embracing them. as selfish mammals we should take rather than push away comfort. I guess Im putting logic where there is none

  38. GC says:

    @Jaad – The book “The 5 Love Languages” can be very helpful in trying to understand what your spouse needs from you in order to feel an emotional connection with you.

  39. Shanna says:

    @horseman
    Don’t know exactly why she rejects your sincere come-ons. Perhaps the negative voice in her head is louder than yours.

    I remember hearing some male doctor on TV say years ago:
    “Ladies, get over your self-consciousness when you’re naked in the bedroom. If there is a hard penis heading towards you – IT LIKES YOU!”

  40. DB says:

    This is my story as well. I’m running the MAP on a marriage that never really had a strong intimacy component in the hopes that maybe I can start it for the first time. 10 years in though is probably too long. She hasn’t responded at all. Other women seem to notice so there’s at least that. I’m not going to let it stop me from continuing the process. I’m just not sure where it’s going to take me now, but I just hope it’s not some where away from my 3 children.

  41. H says:

    Either Athol is right and she isn’t into you or she may just feel like she has nothing to lose.
    She isn’t a man with tits so you can’t sort her out with logic. Her actions are emotion based. She probably has no reason to be afraid of turning you down. Until you give her one she isn’t going to feel like you do when she rejects you. She needs to emotionally feel there is a problem, not logically know there is one.
    Like Mrs. Patmore said “It’s wonderful what fear can do to the human spirit.”

  42. My wife is often not that interested in sex, but she has always lubricated easily. So her body is often at odds with her mind. Sometimes she gets much more turned on, and her level of enthusiasm is obvious.

    I don’t think she realises that I have been reading about and running Game on her. But if your wife catches you doing anything embarrassing, the best move is not to appear at all concerned. Don’t apologise. If you are not abashed, she will not be motivated to try to shame you. The best thing of all is not to try to hide things from her (maybe Game books are an exception). For example, if she asks, suspiciously, if you went to the book shop, reply “Yes, I bought some interesting stuff”. If she asks you why you didn’t mow the law one day, say “I couldn’t be bothered”. Give her the blunt truth. Anything else looks like fear and supplication.

    My way of getting the sex I want from my wife is to promise her a nice cuddle afterwards. If she is feeling horny, maybe ovulating, she sometimes wants a bit of spanking as foreplay. This tends to lubricate her especially well, and leads to hotter sex.

    I have never had any trouble with her lubricating, even when we used to do quickies first thing in the morning before starting the workday. I would describe her attitude as accommodating rather than enthusiastic.

    As a general rule, only apologise to your wife if you have done something really bad, like run over her cat. And don’t report to her on what jobs you have done. She is not your workboss. My wife reports to me on how much laundry she has done, what she has spent on groceries, and often says, “you can’t say I am lazy”. In other words, she is reporting to me as head of house, perhaps without realising it. I think this is healthy.

  43. draggin says:

    @polly re: emotional intimacy

    Sometimes the emotional intimacy is not there because the husband is not getting HIS emotional intimacy needs met through sex and bonding. Yes, it can be a never-ending downward spiral.

    My stress as being sole provider, father of young kids, and business owner, plus some personal trust issues rooted in childhood meant I was too fixated on what had to be done to give our family a decent chance in life. I didn’t have a lot of emotional time or energy left over for her “trivial” talks about dreams etc.

    At one point, a marriage counselor gave us some communication tips, helped to sort out some expectations, etc. but the biggest impact that I can remember ten years later is her telling my ex that she had to start having sex with me again. She told her: “Just do it, get it done, don’t worry about whether you feel like it or not”. My ex did, because at that point she realized that if we weren’t going to have sex ever again, then the marriage may as well be over and at that point she did want to stay married. I believe it also made it ok because it was SOMEONE ELSE giving her permission to do it. Just for reference, she always did enjoy sex once we started and I gave her an orgasm every time. Her issue was always that she wasn’t horny beforehand so she felt she was shouldn’t have sex until she was.

    Having sex again made a huge difference. I felt more bonded and had more tolerance and time and energy to spend with her. I prioritized time with her more because she made me feel good and like MY needs mattered. Basically it became a mutually rewarding positive feedback loop, that quickly led to us entering another high in our marriage and deciding to have another child a couple of years later.

    My point here is that sometimes the woman has to woman up and give something to get something. Society tells men they should fulfill their woman’s dreams and then they will get sex. That is bullshit as it puts all the pressure on the man. It is both partners responsibility to maintain a happy marriage. It is relatively easy for a woman to have “good” sex and take care of her man’s needs and use that to honestly negotiate for what she wants. The reverse, asking a man to fulfill all of her needs and then try to negotiate sex out of that, is nearly impossible, because her needs change from day to due to external stresses, hormonal cycle, etc. This is the message that needs to be taught to women.

  44. draggin says:

    @polly

    I also would like to add that wishing for “more talk of hopes, dreams, fears, beliefs, desires,etc.” does not help when the man has been raised to not share or even think about that type of thing. I know many men that are raised to be practical and work hard and that never had time to stop and think about that type of thing and some were actively discouraged from it. I am one. Getting someone like that to change their personality is very very hard, and the reason you should look for the traits you need in someone BEFORE marriage and not expect them to change their personality to meet your needs.

    If you do want someone to change to meet your needs, you need to state the need clearly and early. Waiting seven years to ask about something you need from your husband just builds resentment. Also, make sure it is a “need” that your husband has to fulfill. Maybe a girlfriend, support group, parent, or sibling could give you what you want for that one aspect so that you can enjoy the rest of the relationship that works for you.

  45. CL says:

    Women don’t understand how important sex is to a man. They don’t understand how he NEEDS it psychologically.

    I think a lot of women don’t understand what it does for themselves either. We get all the feel-good hormonal release as well. It improves sleep quality, it feels good, and it engenders bonding and thus higher desire in a positive feedback loop.

    Since artificial hormonal contraception has been mentioned, I’ll add that a lot of women are also taking SSRIs, which definitely interferes with sex drive and sexual response in many people, both men and women. Reports of women having reduced sex drive on hormonal contraception are so common it’s a wonder it’s still so popular.

    It’s also a psychological and physical barrier to intimacy, IMO. Contraception Prevents More Than Babies

  46. Red says:

    Being alpha is much more than asking for more frequent or exciting sex. It means taking care of your shit and not having excuses for every damn thing. It means doing things you find difficult or having conversations you’d rather not have but need to be had. Complaining about not getting enough sex while your shit is falling around your ankles isn’t going to make her want to fuck you more…even if she’s fucking you regularly.

  47. Joe Commenter says:

    In addition to using the MAP, I have been getting good results by telling my wife about my interactions w/ the women at work. I tell her about how I am getting good at being able to tell when women are flirting with me. How they make excuses to drop by my desk, flip their hair, laugh at my stupid wisecracks. I tell her how I can create attraction in other females by touching them. Then I demonstrate my moves on my wife. Touch her on the back, on the arms, her hair. She sees that I know how to recognize and respond to female attraction to me. I tell her these things in a light hearted teasing way. Not threatening.

    But then I make a U turn and pour on the beta, telling the wife that I’m only practicing this crap so I can attract her better. I tell her she’s my one and only. Then I grill her on how I’m not so sure that she’s that attracted to me. That she needs to show me that she’s as into me as the office girls are.

    At first it felt like I was manipulating my wife. But her response has been spectacular. More interested in sex. Watching her weight. Keeping closer to me. I even overheard her laughing with her mom about how I want her all of the time.

  48. Orange says:

    Aaack! @Joe Commenter

    Please please be careful with the touching at work, and not for the paranoidish harassment reasons. Do you know what all those little touches add up to? It’s like cryptonite, capable of bringing the strongest of us girls to our knees, emotionally. It might look like fun, but she could be really, really hurting inside on account of it.

    Is this just me ladies? I had a boss last year who would do that sort of thing and I’m still trying to escape the emotional vortex, even after a year of zero contact. I took it as a wake-up call, but it has been so hard.

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