|And there we have where I identify in a nifty image.|
It's not with the one sleeping.
It turns out it's a term from the USA Census and refers specifically to a marriage where the couple admits to having sex less than ten times in any given year. Also, it's a well known term in the literature of marriage counselling and has an apparently long and illustrious history. Overall, this affects a small minority of couples, by the by, but from here on in I'll focus on that minority. It also masks things. It would appear that this covers couples that mutually don't have sex (and these would appear to be in the majority if not the vast majority), as in those with both partners having the same low libido and being happy with that. I think I even had the image in my last post: sex is an important 10% of any long-term relationship but it's still just 10%. In the UK, the average (mean) times a married couple has sex is down to three times (ish) a month from once a week. However, a minority of cases are involuntary. Sometimes it is both partners who reach out at different times and get rebuffed and that is heartbreaking to hear about - but there are plenty of areas to help if one can swallow one's ridiculous pride enough to find them and use them. Then there are cases where it isn't like that.
Where males were the Refuser the complaints were often erudite and well-considered. The soul-searching heart-rending but also complete and sympathetic. This went for homosexual and lesbian relationships too, interestingly. These complaints were more saddening because, in the main (and I mean vast majority like over 95%), the complainants were honest and broken and reflective. I found sympathy for these complainants not only easy but natural. Their suffering was plain and their devotion to sorting everything out was clear. Their reluctance to leave or take the 'easy way out' was heartening. Not all ended happily (where they ended) and not all ended badly, but the common thread was decency and politeness. Where females were the Refusers and males the Refused (my blog, my term) this was less universal. Here maybe 67% (i.e. two-thirds) were polite and erudite, about 33% were sympathetic and understanding of their spouse. But at least 50% had feelings that I found difficult to support. Their anger and bitterness was all-consuming. 33% were horribly and obviously misogynistic and 25% were the most vocal and vociferous.
Hold on, another point, by this point I was following the rabbit hole on the Experience Project, having discovered my log in details again.
No, seriously. It's true.
I posted a precis of my own situation (imagine my grim humour seeing a male post "I haven't had any sex since February and I can't take it any more") and, in short order, got some actually rather helpful replies. One of them was... a little bitter. I'm not sure I was entirely happy with the presumption that the poster could insult Tilly the way he did (or how) - he went beyond the situation and started using ominous terms like "they", as in "if they [he referred to all women] could see what they do to us men". Hmm.
Anyway, it would appear that we, Tilly and I, fit the definition of sexless marriage and have done since we were wed in 2008. We even got a bigger bed so that Tilly wouldn't have to sleep so close to me and have two duvets so we don't share bedclothes. I do wonder what the point of sharing a bedroom is apart from a space saver. We've been in a sexless relationship since August of 2007. Seven years makes me a bit of a whelp and a wimp compared to some of the stoicism I've seen (most of the people I read about can claim upwards of ten years) but it is a long time I suppose. And I found, bizarrely enough, that the naivety I had about my own libido and potential issues with sex in a relationship are shared much more by females than males. Or else the males are less willing to admit that part of their lives. I don't know. Even the behaviour of the male refusers was described as being more similar to Tilly than not. Female refusers were, however, generally spoken of with less affection and more loathing, so perhaps that has something to do with it.
I have also managed to mark some books. Go me. To this track:
And here I was complaining that I had nothing to blog about recently.