Imagine this: You put on your sexiest lingerie and drape yourself provocatively across the mattress. But when your husband comes into the bedroom, he casts one glance at you, yawns and moves to the far side of the bed. You reach out, touch his back, hopefully. He flinches. “I’m not in the mood,” he says. You shrink back, rejected. Now imagine this going on for a year or more… This is an increasingly common scenario in many bedrooms. Research shows male loss of libido is the primary concern for half of the couples attending sex therapy, while a recent UK survey found 62 per cent of men turn down sex more frequently than their female partners.
Sexual rejection can be especially difficult for women because most assume men are always interested – a misconception that stems from outdated social attitudes towards sexuality, says the well-known British marital therapist Andrew G Marshall.
It’s easy to feel you’ve become undesirable, or torment yourself with the assumption that he’s having an affair. It’s not an easy situation, but the good news is there are simple steps you can both take to deal with the problem.
5 Steps To Reclaim Your Sex Life
If you’ve already tried seducing your partner to no avail, you may be feeling despondent. But there is a way out of the no-sex cycle:
Acknowledge The Problem
The first step is to discuss your concerns with your partner. Try saying, “We haven’t had sex for a long time and I miss it. I was wondering how you feel about it?” This encourages him to share his feelings, making an honest conversation more likely.
See The Doctor
Physical issues need to be ruled out or dealt with, so encourage him to see the doctor. It may be resolved quickly with treatment, be it some underlying causes or erectile dysfunction.
Understand that sex doesn’t just mean intercourse. Sometimes, men can completely withdraw physically because they think if they cuddle you, you’ll expect full sex, which puts pressure on them to perform. Make it clear you don’t expect that and indulge in sensual behavior – from kissing to slow dancing.
Make A Plan
While spontaneous sex is great, you shouldn’t rely on it, as for many couples that rarely happens. Decide on a weekend to just have a lie-in to just cuddle and kiss. It’s a great way to keep the physical intimacy.
If these steps don’t work, it could be time to get some extra support, especially if your partner refuses to talk. “The sooner you get help, the better – years of rejection and resentment can be hard to resolve, even with the help of therapy,” says Andrew. And if he won’t agree to go with you? Go to therapy on your own. As you’re still functioning as a unit, anything you do will have an impact on him and he may end up joining you.
Related: 5 Hot Apps to Spice Up Your Sex Life
Text: Good Health, Bauer Syndication / Additional Reporting: Shenielle Aloysis