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OK, here goes it, I looked and did not see this discussed anywhere. I am married for 18 years to a wonderful woman, but since day one, I was never passionately attracted to her looks. Early on in the dating, I actually broke it off base on my lack of appreciation of her appearance, she is an average looking lady who has never been in great physical shape. I don't even like to hold hands or show any public affection.

Now, it is reaching a point that I feel like I tossed my life aside and missed out on all of the passion that I should have experienced. I am an attractive man and I misjudged her looks going into the relationship, but we hit it off! I have never told her my feelings, but she knows I don't find her looks appealing, never have, I thought I was doing the right thing to settle down with a woman who would be a great mother. Now, however, at the age of 45 I am still in great shape and really wishing we never married, my eyes wander to attractive women and I know she notices. I look for other hobbies to express my passion for life and beauty. What is amazing to me is how much appreciation I now have retrospectively on the importance of a man finding his wife beautiful, and how this most certainly DOES NOT fade over time, or grow into true love which is blind...it is a wall in our relationship.

I would like to hear if anyone is also dealing with this, and whether this might be sensible grounds to explore divorce, she deserves someone who is drawn to her! But with two children (although older) I would not welcome the mess.

Help!

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Originally Posted by ETW
I would like to hear if anyone is also dealing with this, and whether this might be sensible grounds to explore divorce, she deserves someone who is drawn to her! But with two children (although older) I would not welcome the mess.

Help!

You can turn this around. First off, she needs to be told the truth about what she can do to improve her appearance. And secondly, if she is doing a great job of meeting your other most important emotional needs, you can still be in love with her even though she is not Miss America.

It is amazing how many times people have passionate affairs, for example, with a person who is much less attractive than the betrayed spouse. They fall in love because the other intimate emotional needs are being met. People RARELY fall in love based on physical attraction alone, and if they do, it doesn't last if the other ENs are not being met.

Are you having an affair now? Are you attracted to someone?


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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Wow, I really can't imaging bluntly telling her how I wish she would look better to me, sounds horrible just thinking about it. Some of it is pure genetics, I think that would crush her self esteem.

I am not having an affair, I think that would only make my feeling 100 times worse knowing a better looking woman could be my partner.

She does meet my emotional needs, just not the pride of her looks, and the emotion of appreciating her beauty.

* I just read another post titled 80/20 rule, pretty good stuff. Just gut wrenching to think the 20% I would need to come to grips with living without is my attraction to her. I actually get jealous thinking that she gets to have my good looks, but I have to settle for how she looks.

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But, she is not meeting your needs successfully if you are not in love with her. And if you were in love with her, you wouldn't be considering divorce. She can't fix that problem if you aren't honest with her. This is all vital information that she needs to have in order to have a successful marriage.

I would get the book His Needs, Her Needs, read it and then find a tactful way to tell her the truth. One such way would be for you both to take the emotional needs questionnaires and exchange them.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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Thank you, I will look into the book. If she had the looks I desire in a woman, we would have a relationship for the ages. I just don't know how much can be improved or how interested she would be in making changes.

I don't think she has any idea how unplugged I am, we have never had any passion, so it's not like there is anything that just recently has stopped showing up.

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Looks alone won't sustain a relationship, but if she learns to do a good job meeting your other intimate emotional needs, you can have a passionate, romantic marriage.

Who have you been comparing her to? Do you look at porn? Who are you looking at to get your point of comparison?


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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Have not looked at porn for many many years, did as a kid.

I am not comparing her, I just know beauty when I see it. The problem is that she never was beauty in my eyes, but she had other qualities, and still does. I ordered the book already, and looked at some of the outline, I see that physical attraction man to wife is one listed on the guys side.

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Quote
I misjudged her looks going into the relationship


What does that mean..."misjudged" her looks?

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I have never told her my feelings, but she knows I don't find her looks appealing, never have


How can she KNOW this if you have never told her?

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I thought I was doing the right thing to settle down with a woman who would be a great mother.

Ohhh...you deceived her.

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I look for other hobbies to express my passion for life and beauty


Could one of these hobbies be......porn?

That can cause a person to rewrite history...and to start looking at their wives in an entirely different way.

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she deserves someone who is drawn to her!

How unselfish of you. MrRollieEyes

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But with two children (although older) I would not welcome the mess


crazy...and there we have the REAL truth. "Mess"...what a trite little word.

committed

P.S. Don't be mad at me Mel. blush

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Originally Posted by ETW
...I don't think she has any idea how unplugged I am, we have never had any passion, so it's not like there is anything that just recently has stopped showing up.
So whose fault is that?

You don't tell her how you really feel... so you never give her a chance to give you what you want.

"Attactive spouse" is a real emotional need for some people, but if you deliberately fail to communicate what your needs are, how can your partner be expected to know that he/she should put in the effort to meet them?

Get off the schneid & stop with the deception & conflict-avoidance, ETW. Here you are, looking for validation on a possible decision to divorce, when you haven't even given your wife a fighting chance to start meeting this need of yours. That, my friend, is a load of crap, dontcha think? First, give her a chance, man.


Me: FWH, 50
My BW: Trust_Will_Come, 52, tall, beautiful & heart of gold
DD23, DS19
EA-then-PA Oct'08-Jan'09
Broke it off & confessed to BW (after OW's H found out) Jan.7 2009
Married 25 years & counting.
Grateful for forgiveness. Working to be a better husband.
"I wear the chain I forged in life... I made it link by link, and yard by yard" ~Jacob Marley's ghost, A Christmas Carol
"Do it again & you're out on your [bum]." ~My BW, Jan.7 2009
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Originally Posted by ETW
I am not comparing her, I just know beauty when I see it. The problem is that she never was beauty in my eyes, but she had other qualities, and still does. I ordered the book already, and looked at some of the outline, I see that physical attraction man to wife is one listed on the guys side.

Well, you must be comparing her to something or someone if you have concluded she doesn't measure up. That means you have a standard that comes from somewhere. Is the competition still open?

All of the emotional needs can be either applied to men or women. There is no "guys side." Some women have that need and some guys don't. Every person is different.

I would be careful how you present this information to her and perhaps wait until you get the book and you both complete the questionnaires. I wouldn't present it by telling her that she has genetic impairments that can't be improved [which is nonsense] but something like this: "I would love it if you did ________."

What could she change about her herself to make her more attractive?

Hello to my friend, commie!! grin


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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Melody, I will take your advise and wait on the book. To all of you and your comments about letting her know exactly how I feel, I am really torn on that. I know she knows that my feelings due to my 18 years of not commenting once on how I love her looks, and also that she notices that I notice other women. But I would feel pretty horrible to outline areas that she could improve on, sounds just awful!

I will read the book and determine if maybe this will just be the 20% need that does not get met (see above comment referring to another thread). I just know it is a big one for me and as I get older I feel the clock of time ticking reminding me that it may not ever be met.

Once again, I am not comparing her to anyone, a woman either has it or she does not. I think one of you may have touched on something, I have always been the "keep the peace" kind of guy, I avoided this subject these many years for just that purpose. But I suspect she is also reaching her limit.

Can't wait for the book, thanks again for all of your comments.

PS. there is NO PORN going on here, so can we leave that off the one minute psychiatrist input please. I really want to work through this.

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I did miss a couple of responses to questions. I misjudged her looks by judging her too quickly, over the first couple of dates I made up my mind that she was not pretty enough for my tastes, but she was exactly what I looked for in a long term mate from a personality perspective. She has a body shape that I do not at all find sexually attractive, she is very pear shaped.

As for the other hobbies, I am talking about painting or sculpting which I used to be very good at. I love creating works of beauty.

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Originally Posted by ETW
Melody, I will take your advise and wait on the book. To all of you and your comments about letting her know exactly how I feel, I am really torn on that. I know she knows that my feelings due to my 18 years of not commenting once on how I love her looks, and also that she notices that I notice other women. But I would feel pretty horrible to outline areas that she could improve on, sounds just awful!

It's not going to work if you aren't honest with her, though. She doesn't know your feelings. And if you are "noticing" other women, that is part of the problem. That means you are comparing and the competition is still open. When you get married the competition should be closed. Because it hasn't closed here, you are continually comparing her to others and she will always come up short when compared to some. That is not fair or reasonable.

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I will read the book and determine if maybe this will just be the 20% need that does not get met (see above comment referring to another thread). I just know it is a big one for me and as I get older I feel the clock of time ticking reminding me that it may not ever be met.

It can get met BETTER if you tell her about the problem. And once again, one need being met will never suffice. Lets say that you married someone who has great looks, that would never be enough to create romantic love unless she met your other needs in a perfect way.

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Once again, I am not comparing her to anyone, a woman either has it or she does not.

You said above:

Originally Posted by ETW
I know she knows that my feelings due to my 18 years of not commenting once on how I love her looks, and also that she notices that I notice other women.

I could tell that you are comparing her in your first post even though you want to deny that.

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I think one of you may have touched on something, I have always been the "keep the peace" kind of guy, I avoided this subject these many years for just that purpose. But I suspect she is also reaching her limit.

Unspoken issues in marriage leads to a superficiality that prevents an intimate relationship. Keeping the peace is a disastrous practice in marriage.

But we can help you overcome this if you stick with us.




"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally Posted by ETW
...I know she knows that my feelings due to my 18 years of not commenting once on how I love her looks, and also that she notices that I notice other women. ...
Sounds like you're making assumptions. I can tell you firsthand that making assumptions is about the worst form of spousal "communication" there can be.
Originally Posted by ETW
...But I would feel pretty horrible to outline areas that she could improve on, sounds just awful!
Allowing her to remain in the dark about how you feel? That sounds pretty awful to me. Arrogating for yourself the right to decide what part of the truth she's allowed to hear from you? That sounds like a pretty awful way to treat someone.

Well... you've turned me around, ETW. I was going to make some suggestions about how you can improve your marriage (and I know a thing or two about digging a marriage out of rock-bopttom), but as I think about it, I think the best thing you can do is to give her a divorce. See, you don't just think you're better-looking than she is. You think you're better, period. The fact that you won't level with her, proves it.


Me: FWH, 50
My BW: Trust_Will_Come, 52, tall, beautiful & heart of gold
DD23, DS19
EA-then-PA Oct'08-Jan'09
Broke it off & confessed to BW (after OW's H found out) Jan.7 2009
Married 25 years & counting.
Grateful for forgiveness. Working to be a better husband.
"I wear the chain I forged in life... I made it link by link, and yard by yard" ~Jacob Marley's ghost, A Christmas Carol
"Do it again & you're out on your [bum]." ~My BW, Jan.7 2009
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"She has a body shape that I do not at all find sexually attractive, she is very pear shaped."

I'm not an expert on all the rest of the discussion, but I am an expert on the female pear shape.

Unless she is very pear shaped AND overweight, there is nothing she can do about this. She can work-out fiendishly and it will never change. She can make heroic efforts to tone her thighs and glutes, but the pear will never go.

The idea that distance runners are always slender is a myth; all runners except pear shaped ones can run their legs/glutes slender.

If she is overweight, even if she loses weight she will still be pear shaped.

A liposuction and cellulase could make a fantastic difference and would be far less expensive (emotionally and financially) than a divorce.

Your wife probably likes her pear shape as much as you do, and may welcome that investment.

[Edited to add: By overweight, I mean BMI 26 or greater. Anything less than that is in the normal range for everyone else but on a pear shaped person still appears unsightly and overweight. If she has BMI of 25 or less, it's as good as it will get short of being very underweight - and no fair to expect her to be underweight.)

Last edited by Sunnytimes; 02/10/13 10:15 PM.

Are you living in a covenant with death? With bitterness in your marriage? Read Isaiah 28. The bed will not be long enough or the covers wide enough for you to ever find comfort in that life. In Isaiah 28, God tells you to take a stick and beat these conditions out of your life.

Isaiah 28:29 "This [command] also cometh forth from the Lord of hosts, which is wonderful in counsel, and excellent in working."
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I have given this a full day's thought, and I am sorry but I think you all are 100% wrong about telling her how she can improve her looks to satisfy my need to be attracted to and adore my wife's appearance. I am not sure what the answer is but you people have fallen off the rocker, I suppose if there was something she could actually do to really improve her looks, it may make sense, but otherwise this approach will undoubtedly destroy her self image. Although you all may think I am heartless based on what I have shared in a few paragraphs about my situation, I could never confirm what she may or may not think is in my heart. I would rather her think I am just a rat of a husband with wandering eyes that checks out other women.

ETW by the way is short for eyes that wander.

I have decided to accept this as my 20% need that will never be satisfied in this lifetime, and try to be less noticeable when appreciating a beautiful face or figure.

By the way, I think Melody has it right on, I really never stopped shopping for my partner.......moral of the story for me, love is not blind.

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Originally Posted by ETW
ETW by the way is short for eyes that wander.

I have decided to accept this as my 20% need that will never be satisfied in this lifetime, and try to be less noticeable when appreciating a beautiful face or figure.

By the way, I think Melody has it right on, I really never stopped shopping for my partner.......moral of the story for me, love is not blind.

You got the wrong "moral." The moral of the story is that when you get married you are supposed to stop shopping. Your wife is essentially competing with every attractive woman that crosses your path. And that is an unfair expectation. She loses by default due to the contrast effect.

Does she know you have a gawking problem? Does she see you doing this?

And you can say we are off our rocker about being radically honest, but we have great marriages. And you don't. You won't ever have a great marriage if you aren't honest with your spouse. Making such a complaint is like getting an overdraft notice from the bank. You might not getting the notice, but getting it gives you a chance to correct the problem. In your wife's case, I am sure there is lots she can do to improve her appearance.

You owe it to your wife to stop shopping. That should have stopped when you got married.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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I keep coming back to this thread, but couldnt figure out why. Then I realized it is similar to us. I think women with short hair is sexy. This is extra-weird because my moms hair is short, but go figure. Anyway, most of the short-haired women I met while dating turn out to be gay.

So I gave up this 'requirement' to the women I dated because they a) broke my heart into a million slivers, then stomped on the pile, and b) would make terrible wife material. and c) did and would cheat on me with the other team.

I am very happy with DW's looks, our three beautiful daughters, and her long hair is beautiful. And I am grateful to her because I'm certainly no Brad Pitt!


Me: 46 = DH = INTP
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Here are some good radio clips about gawking.

Radio Clip on Gawking
Segment #2
Radio Clip on Gawking


FWW/BW (me)
WH
2nd M for both
Blended Family with 7 kids between us
Too much hurt and pain on both sides that my brain hurts just thinking about it all.



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Hello Eyes;

You are getting excellent advice from the experienced posters here. However, you may require a different messenger.

Why not consider emailing Joyce Harley with your specific question, to see about being a caller on the radio program? As a caller, you will have a chance to interact directly with Dr. Harley. In my (very recent) experience, Dr. Harley was able to put his finger directly on the issue, and provide crystal clear illumination as for both my husband and me. And he kept talking us through the issues until we could both have clarity on the application of MB principles in our specific case.

To be a caller, send an email to: mbradio@marriagebuilders.com. Briefly outline your situation and ask your question. Indicate your willingness to be a caller. Include your telephone number and full address. (They will send you a complimentary book if you are a US resident.)

Your willingness to resolve this issue may be the greatest gift you can give your wonderful wife. And to yourself.


Me: BW, 57 fWH: 63 (Taffy1) Serial cheater
Presently on the Recovery Road, in the Online program.
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