My wife has detached from me.

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

married 24 years,2 college kids in other states,absolutely feel my wife is who I want to be with till death, she is having a “middle age crisis” with her distain for male dominance in society and how it has a affected her life…I have just come to grips with my bipolar disorder that I’ve terrorized my family with for over 20 years…now the question even though our conventional physical relationship has always had it’s differnces between my wife and I …I thought at this time in our life it was not important… now my wife says she no longer has any interest in conventional physical love(I have a rough time with just saying ‘SEX’). She and I have discussed an arrangement where I just do it to her. I hate it but I need it. She can hold my hand and I couldn’t live without that but when I touch her breast or her stomach she cringes. She can’t help that the feeling is gone but the angish and pain and the throw backs into manic depression are unbearable for me. How can we deal with all the other problems when my thing about SEX interfers with everything else. Conseling is not possible for us… thank you

A: My guess is that your wife is very, very angry with you for “terrorizing the family”. She has decided to stay with you physically but not be with you emotionally. Your sex life is a symptom but it isn’t the problem. Unless you find a genuine way to ask for her forgiveness and she finds it in her heart to do so, you won’t be able to reconnect with each other romantically. You don’t say why counseling is not possible. It’s probably necessary if you two are to have any hope of getting out of this argument.
I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Mar 2007

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2007). My wife has detached from me.. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 25, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2007/03/21/my-wife-has-detached-from-me/