Now, when I say "we don't have sex", I mean no sex, no kissing, no real cuddling...it's off. I get affection at about the rate I got sex toward the beginning of our marriage, which is to say, not much.
And she made it clear when we started our relationship that things like porn, masturbation, etc. were not allowed...porn is the same as cheating, even if we're not having sex. And she refuses to have counseling.
Now, she's a great person, she's a teacher, she's a good parent to our two kids, she's a lot of fun in social situations, we share a lot of jokes, etc. I love this person. I'm trying my best to accommodate things as they are.
My response has amounted to doing my best not to think about sex, not to react to things. I'll occasionally do a manual release, once every couple of weeks, just to keep the pressure down. But part of this is that I'm starting to not be attracted to her, less responsive than I was before (I'm an introvert, and I probably place somewhere on the Asperger's scale, though I haven't been tested). None of this helps my depression particularly, or my feeling of overall isolation.
As a Christian, the advice i get about this, other than that we should be in counseling (which she, a pastor's daughter with all of the answers, won't do) is that we should pray more, or study the bible together more, and then somehow this will get better. This has the sort of feel of stabbing in the dark...the people giving this advice haven't had this problem, and perceive part of the Christian relationship to be things that the woman of course does for the man, which of course isn't really a reality, it's just something people feel like should happen.
I exercise when I can, and a really good workout is exhausting, but that only helps for the brief periods when I've worked out.
It seems like...as somebody who wants to hold things together and make things work, I'm basically going to have to resolve myself to being celibate/asexual. This isn't particularly within my character, and it feels very uncomfortable. But there doesn't seem to be any kind of alternative/venting for me that will allow me to...to not close in? To not kill parts of myself off? And still be good for everybody.
This may sound like an incredible stupid question overall. I know that most of the non-Christians I know would probably be out of the relationship by now, or would be making demands, or fighting more, or cheating, or whatever, but I'm not the sort of person to find happiness in that.
A. There are no stupid questions so stop beating yourself up. Not every non Christian person would make demands, fight or cheat. Sure, some would, but so would some Christian dudes.
You have a variety of options here.
1. Look, it's clear you are depressed. And, as you know from your wife's experience anti-depressants often kill sexual desire. So, in theory, you could simply tell a doctor you are depressed and try different anti-depressants until you find one that kills your libido too. This is not optimal, but, if all other options seem off the table, it could balance things out.
2. That said, your wife does seem to be being unreasonable. If the only problem with other anti-depressants is that they give her headaches, then she can take them and take anti-headache medication as well. Or, she could go to counseling which could eventually lead her to not needing to be on Zoloft. I'm seeing you make a lot of effort here to try to resolve this problem, but it doesn't sound like she's making even the most basic efforts. Which leads to point #3 and probably your best shot at fixing this.
3. You say her dad is a pastor. Well, as a pastor he may be somewhat against counseling. But, you know what pastors are against even more? Their daughter getting divorced. And you know who a pastor's daughter is likely to listen to more than her husband? Her pastor father. Have a talk with him and explain that divorce is a very real option if his daughter doesn't take some reasonable steps, like trying headache medication or a shrink to solve the issue. My bet is he'll be against it at first, but if you make it clear you are serious, he'll have a talk with her that may solve your problem right away.
4. I'm not convinced she's a great mom, by the way. Because kids notice when shit is bad between mom and dad and it hurts them. Her refusing to try to deal with the situation that is causing you to be depressed, lonely and isolated is hurting you. Your kids are bound to notice that and it will not only hurt them now, it will make it harder for them to form healthy relationships when they get older. Is that really being a good mom? This is another topic to bring up with Pastor Dad.
5. Are you sure the problem is with the Zoloft? You don't need to have a libido to give your husband a hand job - particularly if you are telling him that he can't get himself off. I was on Paxil for a little bit and it did kill my libido. But, it didn't make me not want to kiss people. It didn't make it impossible for me to go down on girls. Sure, it made eating pussy less interesting, but it didn't make it some disgusting horrible act. And, certainly, it didn't make me not want to cuddle. You may have to face the fact that this woman doesn't love you. Are you positive you aren't simply a paycheck? Are you sure that the Zoloft isn't just an excuse? Are you positive that the reason she's not going to counseling because she knows that the doctor would tell her the kindest thing she could do would be to divorce you? I know that sounds harsh, but lack of sex is one thing. Lack of affection is something else. Particularly coming from someone who is so controlling that they don't even want you to watch porn or take care of yourself. Sure, there are relationships where the woman doesn't want the dude to jerk off - but those are BDSM relationships involving chastity belts, prostate milking and other forms of tease and denial sexual play and affection. That's not your situation. And, here's the thing, if she doesn't love you, it's not really very Christian of her to just keep you around to pay the bills.