Can't Lose the Love of My Life

Dr. Love,

My husband and I have been married for almost 5 years. I absolutely adore him. I thought everything was fine in our marriage until he told me 2 and a half weeks ago that he was not happy. During that conversation, he told me that he thought we had something worth saving and he wanted to try. He also said that he felt like we needed to go to counseling.

His major complaint was that we don't make love often enough. (Typically only once or twice a month). I'm 23 and he's 29, so I realize that this is not normal. I had a baby when I was 18, and ever since then, sex has been painful for me. I often bleed afterward. My husband knows this, but still doesn't engage in enough foreplay to get me 'ready. '

As soon as we had this conversation, my whole mindset regarding lovemaking changed dramatically. If I had only known how much he was hurting, I would have not pushed him away so often. I didn't realize how rejected I was making him feel. The week after this conversation, I travelled to Memphis with him. I initiated lovemaking everyday, but by the 3rd day, he began pushing me away.

The day after we got home, he said that he was leaving. He took enough clothes for his current business trip. Rather than coming home for Easter, he chose to stay alone in Memphis. He won't even talk to his mother about this, and they are very close. The first phone conversation we had after he left was awful. All he wanted to talk about was who was going to take which furniture.

At first, I cried uncontrollably, but then I started dividing up possessions. Then, he got upset and said that he needed to go. I talked with his mother after that and she told me that I shouldn't give up on him, especially since he tells her that he's worried about how I feel. I called him and told him that I don't want to give up on us and I don't want a divorce. I love him! It's all I can do to get out of bed in the mornings and go to work (I teach at his alma mater).

Now, I've sent him some emails telling him how I feel, but on the phone, he says he's not ready to talk, so we just make small talk about our days. Also, I am willing to accept responsiblity for part of the problem, but Kevin never shows me any affection. He won't hold my hand or put his arm around me in public. Now, that makes me feel terribly rejected. I told him that, too. What should I/we do?

I'm willing to try just about anything, but I don't know if he is. Help, please! I can't lose the love of my life. Thank you.

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