AN, my sense is that your wife has been gaslighting you for a long time, long before her A. The pre-A gaslighting has been to get you into a corner where you accept your stunted sex life as your reality, and you accept the fiction that, no matter what circumstances exist, your WW doesn't want a healthy sex life with you.
As said above, I think she's back to that same process. Some have used the term "managing". This step-wise structure of getting you to the next increment in time, creating the illusion of increasing sunk cost. I'd urge you to research the sunk cost fallacy.
There have been a lot of threads on here, both by BH and BW, where the BS is hurt by the fact that the WS injected more brio or enthusiasm or desire into an aspect of the relationship with the AP than the WS did with respect to the same aspect of the relationship with the BS. That dynamic tends to amplify the pain a BS experiences. It especially amplifies the pain if this dynamic involves something the BS had wanted more of prior to the A. The coup de grace of this is where the BS had expressed his/her desire for more, and the WS told the BS that he/she didn’t want this thing, or enjoy it, or feel comfortable doing it, leading the BS to accept the low level within the marriage out of respect for the WS’s expressed antipathy toward this thing, only to find the WS happily engaging in the thing within the context of the A.
If this aspect involves sex, such as a sexual act or even just enthusiastic initiation of sex, and if the WS is the wife and the BS the husband, there is a special level of humiliation and pain felt by men. I think it’s because of the confluence of several vectors:
1. In most cases, the LD spouse dictates the sexual frequency and repertoire.
2. In most cases, the LD spouse is the wife and the HD spouse is the husband. You see countless threads on Reddit’s "Dead Bedroom" page about this specific dynamic. Even absent infidelity, this can be a process of slow soul death for a husband.
3. For men, sex is perceived as a scarce opportunity, difficult to get. When we marry, we perceive ourselves to be giving up all opportunities for sex except that with our wife, who becomes the literal gatekeeper of our sexual happiness.
4. For men, therefore, expressions of sexual desire by our wives give us affirmation of our worth, as a man. Most married men will tell you they/we need this for our self-esteem.
5. For men, because of this, if our wives reject us sexually, we feel rejected as men. Conversely, if the WW enthusiastically engages in sex with the AP, and in so doing, engages in the stuff we have been consistently denied, we feel emasculated and sexually humiliated. "Cucked" to use a crass vernacular term.
I understand what the WW’s on the thread are saying about how, in most cases, it’s not the masculinity or male attractiveness of the AP that drives the WW to a sexual frenzy, but rather the admixture of the neuroses that led her to decide to seek validation via cheating, plus the illicit thrill of the engaging in an A. As I've said before, I don't buy that theory, at least not as the 100% sole vector. After all, cheating is rarely with a rando. Usually there is some emotional component. In the present thread, a protracted EA that built to the PA. Make no mistake, it was the AP specifically, as a specific human man, who was the beneficiary of Mrs. AN's sexual largess.
Even accepting the "it's not the man, it's the manic" explanation arguendo, explaining a thing is not the same as excusing a thing. Besides, the distinction is irrelevant. It doesn’t ameliorate the humiliation and emasculation that the BH feels in this specific scenario.
By the way, to my recollection, none of the WW’s posting in this thread were involved in affairs that incorporated this specific dynamic. Also, if memory serves, it's possible that all of them have lived experiences that include mad hatter elements.
But I digress. The point is that, before the A (and here, after Dday), the WW has expressed to the BH that she doesn’t enjoy these sex acts, or this sexual high energy, at all. Yet, empirically, she did enjoy them in the context of the A. Meaning that (a) she lies when she says she doesn’t enjoy them at all, and (b) clearly, she doesn’t enjoy them with her BH, in the context of the marriage.
It becomes a lose/lose for the BH. Either he accepts the fact that his WW won’t ever engage with him in a satisfying sex life, knowing that she chose to engage with the AP in a satisfying sex life, or he coerces her in some manner into engaging in these acts even though she doesn’t like it. On that point, I'm not in alignment with WWTL. Giving her a checklist of sexual items and frequencies simply invites her to hold her nose and mime her way through them on a schedule. Sex would feel like Marcelle Marceau battling against an unseen wind. It would not be a joyous melding of souls in love. It would be an exercise in resentment from Mrs. AN, coupled with non-fulfillment by Mr. AN. Not an acceptable outcome.
There really is no coming back from this specific dynamic. There have been plenty of threads here where the WW brings the new sex tricks willingly to the BH. The result is usually failure. As she's working the Joe, all he can think about is how this is something she learned from the AP. Again, this specific dynamic offers no good solution. Remaining married is a lose/lose for both spouses.
I don't want to get into a protracted t/j about "emasculation". Suffice to say that I believe men are capable of defining their own masculinity and don't need a woman to make value judgments on their worth.
Virtually 100% of the men who have ever commented on this issue have been in alignment with the fact that this fact pattern is utterly emasculating and sexually humiliating for a man.
Why would a woman who enjoys oral sex try to strike it from her life? I can’t make it make sense.
It's easy to understand when one keeps in mind that sexual enjoyment is heavily context-dependent. AN's wife has chosen to define her marriage as a context in which she will strike oral sex from her life. She has chosen to define an adulterous affair as a context in which she will allow herself to explore her enjoyment of oral sex.
That dialectic leaves AN with a Hobson's choice if he wishes to remain married to her: accept a marriage in which he will never, for the rest of his life, receive oral sex (or, at least, he won't receive willingly proffered oral sex).
To those suggesting AN and his wife might benefit from a sex therapist, from what I can gather, AN's wife knows how to get her freak on, and she knows how to allow herself to enjoy varied sex in certain contexts. I don't think she needs a therapist. What she wants in a husband is a co-parent, a helpmate, a friend, but not an active sexual partner. I submit that AN could provide for all of her wants via being a proactive co-parent in the context of being divorced. I think the relationship, quite frankly, would be much better in that structure.
[This message edited by Butforthegrace at 3:48 PM, Sunday, March 19th]