My problem may not be a problem. I'm not sure. I've been dating a guy for over a year. We started out with a lot of sex and began to like each other a lot as well. But the sex part changed dramatically. He is so gentle, erotic, and when we spend time together, the night is full of kissing and touching and hugging even while sleeping. I don't feel that I miss something. Okay, it is an open relationship because I go to clubs sometimes as I used to, and he is also seeing someone. Based on honesty and consideration, this works fine for me.
He is currently on medication (and so am I). We are in the 40-50 age group. Kissing and touching with him is so nice that I feel there is a slight sexual undertow all night. This is something new to me. I was used to it always ending in sex, and I used to like that. He says he was always like this. He does generally not want sex that often and never did. I do not feel rejected because there is no rejection. I also don't ask for sex except at times when I really need it. Sooner or later, we'll do something. He would also just please me if I wanted that.
It's all just new, but I think I am into him a lot more than I thought in the beginning. Whenever we touch, there is an incredible energy flowing that relaxes both of us. So, it is all very unusual. We talk about this too. He will have sex maybe once every six months. He might want to, and then he stops. He can't give any reason other than that he does not want the same thing all the time. He needs different things. That would also be fine, sure.
I guess my question is, am I going to become unhappy if this turns into something long term? I have a history of taking care of men. How can I find out whether I am sacrificing myself again? I only know one way to find out: to check on my emotions and my physical reactions day by day. Any advice?
Dating someone for over a year qualifies in my book for a long-term relationship. It's certainly long enough to be able to spot the patterns and problems. If you've got almost no sex now, Dear Reader, the only thing I can predict for you is zero sex.
I find it amazing that you can be with this guy, just accept his vague statements, and not confront him about refusing to join with you in mutually pleasurable lovemaking that ends in orgasms for everybody. Why would anybody want to hold back from that experience? His positions sound quite contradictory to me. He wants it but he stops letting himself have it. He doesn't want sex any oftener than once every six months. He wants sex but it always has to be "something different." Okay, fair enough—but different how, exactly? Does he want you on top? Oral sex, given or received? Fucking from behind? A hand job? WHAT?!?
I get that you love him. I get that kissing, touching, and hugging produces warm and relaxing energy. But all this cuddling represents a slightly erotic friendship to me, not a love affair. I wonder if you've held off your own orgasms for so long that you are floating on a tantric cloud of repression and denial. Are you afraid to acknowledge how much you've already given up to be with this guy? Because if you did, I think you might actually be pretty angry. If you were happy with the situation, you would not have put fingertips to keyboard to write to me.
My gut tells me that this guy is not telling you the truth about what is really going on for him sexually. I am going to throw out some possibilities to help you, perhaps, start a conversation with him to pin him down. Is he impotent? Is he afraid of contracting a sexually-transmitted disease (STD)? Is he HIV-positive or does he have hepatitis or some other STD? Has his other partner told him he can fool around with other people as long as he keeps his wiener out of the bun? Does he have an irrational fear of getting a female lover pregnant?
There are other possibilities. Is he uncomfortable with his gender or the masculine role during sex? Does he want to cross-dress or change his sex permanently? Is he a bottom who will not enjoy sex unless you take control? I suspect this may be true because of your statement that he'd be happy to have sex with the focus on simply pleasuring you. Does he have a fetish that he's reluctant to share with you because he believes you will disapprove and then vanish from his life?
There's another under-diagnosed sex problem that might be worth investigating. Some people with adult Attention Deficit Disorder or hyperactivity have a very difficult time staying focused during sex. When he was a kid in school, was he ever diagnosed with this problem? The experts used to believe that ADD or ADHD simply went away when people got older, but that's proven to be false. Somebody with this wiring has a hell of a time sticking with a script long enough to bring lovemaking to its usual fruition. They are always bouncing around inside their own head, focusing on other things, being detached from their own bodies, and generally being driven crazy by distractions and mental interruptions. But the same treatment that helps people to focus better at school or on the job can also sometimes help with sexual scripting difficulties.
I hope you understand that the above is just my opinion. The only real expert on this relationship is you. But you know that you have a self-destructive pattern of hooking up with guys who take more than they give. You report taking a lot of pleasure in this guy's company. But some red alarm lights should start flashing when you admit that you sometimes get so frustrated that you have to demand sex from him. And even then, it sounds like the response is uncertain and delayed. If you're getting toasted up like a grilled cheese sandwich by somebody else, and that's enough to keep your body humming with satisfaction, maybe you can afford the luxury of having such a lazy man in your bed as a side dish. If not, if he is supposed to be your primary deal, you're getting gypped. There are guys out there who understand the value of long periods of physical closeness and touching—as well as frenzied humping.