I can't lose him, yet don't know if I can marry a cold fish.
We often have visitors write in with solutions to each others' problems. Here is a visitor's solution to one of our visitor's questions.
Original Visitor's Question from a 41-50 year old Female
I just found your site, and i LOVE it...
That being said, perhaps you can shed new light on an on-going, seemingly unresolvable problem. My fiancee' and I were engaged 6 months ago, after purchasing a house together. We've been together 2 years. We have gone to see a counselor for this...but he just listens, nods, and collects his check. I will call him "J". J and I have an intimacy problem. He isn't one for touching, or contact to show love. He does things for me. I can't complain...this man is the best thing that's ever happened to me...however, I'm very affectionate, and when I go over and hug him...it's like hugging a post! He has a difficult time returning just a touch. He at least holds my hand, now, without walking beside me like a brother. We've talked about it to the point where I think he feels like he can't make me happy because he is incapable of giving me what I need. I think a simple touch, arm around me, hug, hand on my knee... simple closeness is not out of line, and would think that if you love someone...it's automatic. SO... this issue has triggered a major depression. I feel unattractive, which then makes me very insecure with him, then a depression like i've never known! I've gained 10lbs this past 6 months..and that adds gas to the fire, I then dislike me!! PLEASE HELP! I desperately LOVE this man, and we're getting married Valentine's day. But I can't live with his level of affection and be happy. When I try to concentrate on accepting and loving him as-is. I get resentful because he LOVES the attention I shower on him. He's spoiled! EVERYTHING ELSE IS PERFECT. It all just makes the tears come, because I can't lose him, yet don't know if I can marry a cold fish.
=0( Help me...please?
User Submitted Advice from a 31-40 year old Female
Help him learn
oh boy, that just described my marriage and my husband. I even used the same word to describe him once - coldfish. We had very little "touching" in our lives together and very little sex.
It is highly unlikey to improve with marriage unless you work on it together starting right now. Have you ever read "The Five Languages of Love"? You sound like me in that you value the language of "Physical Contact" over other expressions of love or caring. Sure he is a wonderful man, provides for you, probably would give you the moon but if he can not meet that one strong need in you, you will feel lonelyness and emptyness of your "love tank" even though logically you KNOW in your head he loves you.
Humans NEED physical contact. It is unnatural not to have it.
Luckily if you catch this early and you are both willing to try to make it better he really CAN learn to be more affectionate. It will seem unnatural to him at first but the more he does it the more he will be comfortable with it.
Eventually, (this may take years) he will even crave it him self. He didn't get that much needed "touching" as a child so he doesn't know how to do it and it feels "weird" to him. Teach him, read some books starting with the one I mentioned and encourage him.
Also check out Dr. Harleys site about "Emotional Needs" (your #1 may be affection). It is a simular concept to "The 5 Languages of Love" book.
Don't ever tell him he is doing it wrong. Just take what you can get at first because it is going to be really hard for him and if you reject his efforts he will clam up and not try.
Make him feel respected and loved and he will want to do what it takes to make you feel loved even if it is hard for him.
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