Disappointment after Vday… Am I being to sensitive?
Hey all. I want to start by saying this post is NOT to take sides or point fingers at my DW. My purpose is to simply see if I’m being too sensitive about this and didn’t properly set expectations.
A week ago, my wife was texting with her friends and she started laughing. Long story short, she asked her friends what they were getting their husbands for Valentine’s Day and it obviously turned to bedroom activities. (Not too graphic, but enough that they discussed some things my DW wasn’t comfortable with.) She turned to me and told me “so – you’ll probably get XYZ sexual act instead.” Which was great, as its something new I’ve always wanted to do.
Fast-forward a week to Valentine’s Day. I took the day off from work and we had fun with the family. I made dinner, we had a great evening (post-kids going to bed) with the wife. It’s been great and she’s feeling loved. So we go to bed, I initiate and she basically shuts me down. She said she knows it’s Valentine’s Day but that she didn’t pick up any cues and she’s now pretty tired. She asked if we could have sex tomorrow and asked if I wanted to cuddle (clothed) instead and I literally said I would take whatever I could get.
I’ve thought about it last night and this morning and I guess I’m most disappointed that, after she suggested that last week, I felt like it was pretty much a given. And that, knowing how important sex is to me that, not only did it not happen, but that she wasn’t taking initiative to begin with. However, I also don’t want to make a mountain out of an ant hill, especially since I didn’t explicitly give my expectations.
So, again – do you feel like I didn’t properly set this expectation? Or am I making too big of a deal about this (since it’s Valentine’s Day)? (I plan on talking to her about it on Sunday, as today is ironically her birthday and I don’t want to take away from that.)
I can understand your disappointment, and it’s valid. Communicating about it will be important.
It is obvious that there was some miscommunication and misunderstanding going on. What I am wondering is if you guys may be similar to us, but switched. My husband is an external processor, that means he talks out his thoughts. And often what comes out of his mouth is just that, a thought, not a statement, not a declaration, and not a decision. To him, he can say something like….”We can….” or “I will….” and it’s still just him thinking through his options on a way to a decision, or even to no decision at all, it just entered his mind at that moment. More than once, I have left conversations (one-sided or together) thinking he had made a decision, only to realize later, after some frustration, disappointment or irritation, that he hadn’t.
For me, I am an internal processor, all of that thinking goes on inside my head (or down in writing), so when I say something, I mean it. It’s a statement and a decision, or I make it very clear that it’s something I am thinking about but haven’t decided yet. I am also quite literal. I would have been like you, and would have taken a comment like that literally…it was a descion that he intended to do. . My husband, not so much….again to him, it could have been a random thought and a flippant comment.
If any of that sounds familiar, that could be an idea of some of what was going on. If that doesn’t sound like your wife at all, ignore it and go from a different angle when talking to her.
I’ve been in this exact scenario and felt the hurt and disappointment you’re feeling. Thankfully my wife has been far more generous in bed lately, and we’ve finally been able to talk through some of these things. The lesson I’ve taken from that is:
Marriage is a long game.
I’ve found myself much more content in marriage since adopting that mindset. I’d still be disappointed by the scenario you describe, but I’d also take her at her word when she says “let’s do it tomorrow.” So give her today, continue being the loving husband you always are, and see what happens tonight. If she comes through, take joy in that. If she doesn’t, tomorrow take the opportunity to talk with her about it and communicate that you felt let down twice. It was huge when I told my wife, “it’s much easier for me to accept No when I know that tomorrow it will be Yes.” If the No is the end of the story and it may be days or a week before she even considers something again, then that No has far more sting.
So play the Long Game, don’t let one No get you down, and keep being kind, generous and loving regardless of the times she says No.
I have had the happen before, we would have a good Valentines Day and wife wanted to skip sex that night. She actually told me to masturbate instead of sex. I thought really? On Valentines Day? It happens and is disappointing when you thought you were getting sex and didn’t. I would talk to her about, but maybe she was just too tired, this special day did come at the end of the week and i think people do get tired. If she was really exhausted that night, maybe you can make it up Sunday. Enjoy her birthday today though!
From the scenario of events you described, I think you have every right to be upset. She told you a week ago you were getting XYZ sex act for VD and you didn’t get it. I would ask her what she meant about, “not picking up clues.” It sounds like you didn’t think you needed to drop clues because she was going to initiate with XYZ.
Fun with the family…made dinner…great evening…feeling loved
These are all wonderful things. They put me in mind of a word I learned recently: Hygge–which includes in its definition words like coziness, comfort, contentment, and well-being. We women love these things. Universal women gifts are cozy socks; soft blankets; scented candles, lotions, and shower gels; and shapely vessels for our choice of liquid addiction; and it’s because all these things produce that sense of hygge. Like your evening.
Guess what feelings hygge does NOT include? Passion, titillation, excitement, arousal, desire, hunger, longing, or drive.
I suspect–because this happens to us frequently enough–that the daily patterns just took over so strongly that it failed to feel like a special event to your wife, or if it did, it didn’t feel like the kind of special event that gets her panties wet. You played the part of Super Hubby-Dad all evening, but did she see Red Hot Lover Man peeking around the corner letting her know she is not just Wife-Mom, but a dead-sexy Vixen that drives you so wild for her you can barely control yourself until you are alone? Did she get the sense that whether you got the special sex move or not, you were positively salivating to worship at the temple of her body with every part of yours? Did she feel both desirable and desired?
Sometimes I can have the best evening in the world with my DH, but it doesn’t put me in the mood for sex. I have to have a little time with his inner Cassanova, too.
For what it’s worth, if my wife makes a joking, light hearted comment like that around something her friends say or she saw on TV, etc. I tend to make sure I follow up a bit later with another light hearted response that makes it clear I’m looking forward to it. If there is a several day gap like in your case I’ll do that more than once. When I fail to do that I don’t assume my wife understands I took her comment as an expectation. It’s not that my wife has ever intended to agree to something and then back out, it’s just that she could view a flirty comment around what her friends were doing a week ago as simply that and not an expectation she was setting. Just something I’ve learned with her through the years – if she sets what I think is an expectation I make sure she knows I’ve seen it that way. Then we can discuss early if we were not aligned.
Having said that, I would be disappointed that she didn’t agree that night once the miscommunication became clear. I do think my wife would have unless she was so tired or something that it was really a bad time (not an un-preferred time). I hope your wife followed through the next night as that is a clear expectation.