Can we spot the problem here?

My wife and I have been together for 18 years. We have a good sex life but for the past few years I have brought up the fact that I feel it’s become very “vanilla”. I have asked for her input on spicing things up, but she’s never given me any ideas. I’ve bought toys, books and made suggestions, but often these are ignored. My wife has a very stressful job that is demanding of her time and attention. I’m a stay-at-home dad to our two school-age children. My wife says she is too stressed from work and feels too bad about her appearance to have the time to fantasise or be creative in the bedroom, and that I have to be content with what we have. I am just as attracted to her now as I was when we first met.

She has also recently confessed that she is resentful of my not having a job and that some of her stress comes from me spending money that she works so hard for. I’m trying to rein in my expenditure, but I’m having a hard time connecting her lack of interest and inability to fantasise about sex with her reasons because my feelings come naturally out of my love and attraction for her in good times and bad.

However grossly pigdog of me this is I might start musing about how certain gender roles are rather more deeply wired into us than others.

22 thoughts on “Can we spot the problem here?”

  1. I notice he mentions his wife’s appearance but never his own. Just maybe, he’s turned into a fatty lardbucket while he’s staying-at-home on the sofa in front of daytime telly (the kids are at school, it says.)

  2. Bloke in North Korea (Germany province)

    You can try every flavour on offer in 18 years, many times over.* If you settle on vanilla, that’s your choice.

    *: I suspect BiS can think of a few flavours the gathering here has not yet considered, but you get the point.

  3. His problem is that he reads the Guardian and then inflicts it with a made-up story.

    Anyway why isn’t he doing at least part-time work?

  4. Isn’t the problem called “married life”? Or possibly “middle age”? Do all the high-earning alpha males with stay at home wives have a much better time after 18 years?

  5. The lady has my sympathies. She puts in a 10 hour day in order to bring in the cash for the family and come home to find that, after an afternoon’s online shopping and pigging out on Deliveroo, her skiving husband wants to stick a dildo up her arse.

  6. This sounds so made-up that one wonders if it wasn’t the opposite story, and the G’s editors decided to modernise it by inverting the genders.

  7. Well, 18 years in and “My wife says she… feels too bad about her appearance”.

    It’s called middle-age.

  8. But, to the point about differences between men & women, try to imagine this letter from a wife about her hubby. I’m too tired to have wild sex with you tonight – umm, yeah I don’t think that’s gonna happen.

  9. I have always found it amusing that Stephenson Connolly, an Australian where, allegedly, “Brace yourself, Sheila.” is considered foreplay, has forged a career as a sex therapist or, as her husband once pointed out, ‘the rapist’.

  10. yep inverted – or at the very least they had 99 write in t’other way round and they picked this one.
    “I’m trying to rein in my expenditure” — this sounds a very unblokey thing, much more than being a househusband. What’s he spending it on – clothes, spas, gents who lunch?.

  11. Dennis, Polishing The Ol' Crystal Ball

    I’m no psychic, but I see him spending more time with divorce lawyers than dildos sometime in the near future.

  12. If he’s trying to rein it in, may be he’s down the bookies all day on the nags.

    Whilst wearing his cock ring.

  13. Bloke in North Korea (Germany province)

    “Yes, and they could always turn off the lights”

    This does reduce your choice of flavours quite considerably. Vanilla remains an option.

  14. When my wife worked and I was at home she wasn’t stressed — because I did all the housework. All of it. So she was feet up the moment she came in the door.

    This guy won’t even have little kids like we did. “School age” isn’t three and five.

    Most modern women work, then still have cooking and cleaning to do.

    We had agreed spending amounts, actually separate accounts. I could waste it on whatever I wanted, no explanations needed.

    I’ve seen a marriage break solely because the husband took up flying.

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