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Sexual Problems In Marriage

Community Member

My wife and i have been together 13 years married 7 with a 5yo and 3yo child

Before meeting me my wife claims that she was quite ( shall we say ) free flying with men, which leads me to think she at some point had a high or moderately high sex drive

Since i have been with her, and since day one really she has been quite sexually awkward and being a gentleman i dont want to force a woman into something she does not want to do.

The awkwardness from the beginning was her just not having the drive and rejecting me often to the point where i would stop making advances in fear of rejection.

so sexually all through our relationship for me it has been rather problematic and when i try to cautiously raise the topic the conversation doesn't go very far.

So rolling on the situation over time has been that the sex has been very much "same old" which i can handle, BUT it is getting to a point where the regularity has dwindled away and as of recent has gotten pretty bad, in order to instigate anything i tend to make hints for a couple of days and then she will reciprocate, almost as if she has had to have some days to mentally prepare !

I started a conversation with her about a week ago about her attraction to me etc and she said she was and that she had issues with her own body, mine to a point, work and that she enjoys sex when she is doing it, but its hard to get her to that point.

my problem right now is i am beginning to resent her for it i think, and an even bigger issue, is because she pretty much refuses to put effort in. Right now i am finding i cant as i feel its either forced or not wanted, at this moment in time i am making no suggestions, no moves and am going cold turkey ( not without getting very annoyed ).

i know she is not cheating, but it has gotten me down pretty bad questioning the longevity of my marriage as i do not feel she is into me.

i know i am not the only guy here but i need a miracle pill for her but i dont want to have that awkward guy chat 😛



4 Replies 4

Community Champion
Community Champion

Dear Mike1983~

Welcome here, this is an awkward 2-person problem with no easy answer, however that does not mean things can't improve, just it might take time and willingness to work on it together - which may mean being very frank and looking at things differently.

One also has to face the fact that in very many couples the libido is stronger on one side than the other, everyone is different. Plus frequency does not equal affection or love - or satisfaction level.

You wife saying she had an active sex life prior to marriage may be true, or a confidence builder.

The fact she does not appear to have one now could be due to a huge number of factors from straight medical problems though a dislike of her own body image to constant fatigue (2 kids plus work is a huge task, even when both partners are involved). Those are just a few of the guesses.

I'd imagine if she realizes you are feeling deprived this may lay guilt on her on top of everything else. This of course would be a further barrier. Intimacy, security, comfort, happiness and affection are all really needed (and maybe even fun).

As you have already started talking abut this -which is in itself a huge hurdle overcome, can I suggest you both independently have medical check-ups and set out the problem to your doctor(s)?

It may well be your partner will be more forthcoming if she realizes what the problem is with a medical person rather than you.

You mentioned hints, which obviously are not working, I would imagine wooing her (yes an old fashioned term) might be better.

I would imagine that this conversation should continue after straight physical problems have been ruled out

Would you think that is a sensible way to go?


Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hi Mike,

Croix as usual has a solid reply. My gut said the same thing... I called it romancing or dating instead of wooing 😊.

I have two kids. And long term time limitations (after the kids are in bed) are a mood killer for sure. Look at your routine and note how often you are affectionate or fun or flirty without expecting sex.

Also it is worth asking yourself is there an incentive for her to have sex? Too often rushed sex means less foreplay or neglected needs. People change... Do you know what she fantastises about? Are you meeting her needs?

Then there is the issue so many women I know mention in long term relationships. They know they are loved but don't feel appreciated or cared for or sexy or wanted. It is easy to turn on the charm when you want sex. But what is the rest of the day like...worth thinking about.

I hope you are able to work it out and improve things for both of you.

Community Member

Hi Mike

I've been in the position of not wanting sex in my long term marriage for years. I can make a few points from my personal experience that I hope you take as intended (helpful advice)

1. whatever she's told you about her sex life prior to your marriage is irrelevant.

2. having two little kids to care for is exhausting, mentally, physically & emotionally. a woman can easily get 'touched out' ie. at the end of the day she just wants to NOT be touched because the kids have been all over her. It is extremely hard to get in the mood when you feel like this. if your sex life has become 'same old', that's an inevitable consequence. If you'd like more variety, that might happen on weekends away or special occasions when she is feeling super relaxed & appreciated, but on a Wednesday night after she's had kids spitting up on her all day...not likely

3. What is the division of labour like in your household? It may well be totally equal and if so, that's terrific! But have a think about it. Be brutally honest with yourself. If she's exhausted at the end of the day, perhaps there's something you can do to lighten her load. Resentments can build up over years if one partner feels they are doing more than their share of the housework & that will effect desire levels

4. You say it's as if she needs a few days to mentally prepare. I can tell you that's exactly as I've felt in my marriage due to the factors I've listed above. Then you say she refuses to put in effort. Mentally preparing for days is effort, effort she is going to for your sake. Best appreciate this.

5. Trust me, she already feels bad that she does not want sex as much as you. Hinting around about what you'd like is only making her feel worse, & in turn reducing her sex drive more. Tell her honestly that you would like to be intimate with her and ask what conditions might need to be for that to happen.

6. Wooing is great, but not if your sole reason is to get her to have sex. Try to enjoy spending time together regardless of where it leads

Sometimes reduced libido can have a medical explanation. it doesn't hurt to investigate that. But often it's emotional, about things that have nothing to do how much she loves you. I've listed the things I have because they contributed to what became for me a complete lack of desire for sex. If you want to keep your love alive don't hint around and let resentment build one either side. Be as open and honest as you can, with your wife and yourself


Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Dear Mike,

As a woman who also had a rather 'full flavoured' sex life before I married my (now ex) husband, I can tell you one thing for absolute certain; if there is one thing above all else that us women need, it is emotional intimacy. We need to feel, see, and hear your soul before we see, feel and hear your body.

My [ex] husband and I are not divorced because of any cheating or violence or anything like that, but because of a lack of emotional connection. Maybe that seems fickle, but it's just what happened. We stopped talking .... I think too, that he is on the Spectrum for Autism and so intimacy of any kind, and some sensory issues were a constant presence/interference in our efforts to communicate. He's a great guy, but he just never had that capacity to share his thoughts and feelings with me in a way that helped me to then open up to him.

I now have a new man in my life, who is not on the spectrum of autism, and I do feel as though we are slowly but surely getting closer and closer in an emotional sense ...... which means to me he is becoming more and more attractive all the time. I just love that he can share his innermost thoughts and feelings with me.

I don't know if it would help you like it helped me, but there are a series of books called "Men are from Mars and women are from Venus" and I have found them to be wonderfully helpful in learning about how men think and operate, versus how us women think and operate, and how both sexes tend to get 'mixed up' with the differing thoughts and behaviors. It's almost as if we forget that we are indeed different in some ways and that women (unconsciously) expect men to respond like other women would, and men also forget and subsequently, albeit unconsciously expect women to respond and behave like other men would.

I hope that makes at least a little bit of sense. Anyway, as Croix said, a little bit of wooing can go a long way! And yes, before marrying you, she didn't have the two young children to add to the load of working as well. It's a big load and one that often leaves me wondering how in the world they cope at all, let alone with 'having' to 'please' their partners.

Perhaps if there is more things around the house you could help out with, it might also help her to feel like the load is being more shared?

I don't know really, and now I'm running out of characters left quota, so I'm gonna have to leave it there.

Hope things improve soon. Take care. xo