I have a lot of thoughts on this. But first, a couple quick questions - how far out from DD are you and your husband? And, as objectively as possible, how often is a scenario playing out where your needs (whether to feel wanted/desired, or simply to be understood/reassured) are not being met in comparison to how often they are being met? For instance - if you think back over the last month - how many times did you feel like he was willing to put your needs second to whatever he felt needed to be attended to (sleep, work, whatever)? And how often did he meet your needs - for sex, to cuddle, to help out around the house or talk through your feelings when you were beginning to spiral? None of us are perfect - and sometimes we don't have the emotional bandwidth to deal with something well in that moment. We know we are likely to be short/curt/unkind in response to someone we love. In those cases, it is actually mature and wise, to say, "I don't mean to seem like your needs don't matter - it's just that I am exhausted/fried/depressed and I don't think I can talk about this right now." HOWEVER, and this is really important - this should come with a willingness to deal with that issue/concern/need at another time VERY SOON. To say, can we table it until tomorrow after work (or another appropriate time)? And then follow thru on it. My husband and I had to do this several times during the first year or two when he had a really challenging meeting the next day. I was willing - and it was insanely hard, because like you - my mind worked it to death for HOURS while I waited. Interestingly, he found that it was often really hard for him to relax the following day (even if he'd fallen asleep out of sheer exhaustion) - so he started preferring to deal with stuff right then and there, because he found that the less time I had to cycle, the more "productive" the conversation was. I was less emotional (hadn't gone to the truly ugly place yet) - which allowed him to be calmer - which resulted in both of is getting more out of the discussion. As he started to see this cycle play out - he started ASKING me if something was wrong long before I felt compelled to bring it up. But he always appreciated it that I was willing to wait - and saw it as proof that I wasn't trying to punish him - but that the voices in my head were getting me down and I needed his help to tame them. Now, if your husband is using this as a tactic to avoid the conversation all together - then that is a concern and will require a different approach. One thing I'd like to point out - there is NOTHING in your post that seems like you are "bringing every argument back to the affair". If he forgot to get an oil change and somehow THAT came back to the affair, then I'd be more concerned. You are following a more logical train of thought then that so I don't think you are being unreasonable. But you are likely linking things in ways that aren't really true. I.e., he was always worried about her feelings and isn't with me - therefore he doesn't love/value me as much. HE LEFT HER HIGH AND DRY. He is WITH you trying to rebuild a marriage when it is hard as heck. I'd say that shows way more commitment to your feelings than a text message or twenty. That being said, he needs to do a better job of recognizing hour needs for reassurance - and meeting them. SEX - there's a lot to unpack here and I need to go to a meeting. But when I get back, I will give you my two cents worth on that. Suffice to say, this one is usually fraught for both sexes BEFORE an affair - with one partner typically doing more of the pursuing and often feeling the way you do right now. And then after an affair? ALL NEW BAGGAGE. Both sides have new insecurities that can make sex a minefield. And sometimes your body can throw you a curve-ball you aren't expecting. Like when your head really wants to have sex, but your body is just not on the same page... and now your partner is certain it's because your don't want them. Or they have bad pictures in their head, or they are thinking about someone else. I have had this happen with my husband - in my head I was so turned on - but my body was just NOT getting from Point A to Point B. He was worried that he wasn't pleasing me. But I can assure you it wasn't that - or because I didn't want him, or that I was playing movies of his affair in my head. I might have been hormonal or unable to get work stuff out of my head... I don't know. What I know is that there would have been a lot less of him (or me) second guessing it BEFORE the affair. Now it takes great effort NOT to do exactly what you are struggling with - assuming that it links to the the affair when it is just as likely one of a number of other unrelated reasons. I'd consider thinking about before the affair when he was the main pursuer. Were you always 100% into it immediately? Or were their times where mentally or physically you just couldn't get "into the mood"? You can't compare the limited interactions of an affair with a life-long partnership. For better or worse, the dynamics are 10000% different. Any of us can lose sleep for a night, or two or five when we know it is short duration. But when we have all the time in the world? Nope. Look at it this way - if he knew that the world was ending in 5 days, he'd be all over you. But he's planning on a lifetime with you. So the idea of waiting a day or two when his back isn't hurting and he isn't mulling over work BS doesn't seem like a big deal. Now, if he's regularly avoiding sex - that a different thing and could be related to shame. But that is not what I thought I was hearing/reading. Okay - gotta run. Late for my meeting because I am too verbose.
BS - Female
Married 27 years, one adult child DD May 2016 “When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.” - V Frankl