These tips can help you reconnect with your partner. I wrote this for a wife who told me this:
“I feel completely disconnected from my husband and don’t want to spend the rest of my life in a sexless marriage. I met him when I was 20. We’ve been together 13 years, married 3, and have a two year old son. Right from the beginning we had issues with intimacy, so much so that I cheated on him early on. I didn’t hide it from him, and told him I wanted to break up as I didn’t believe we were right for each other. He showed such little interest in me sexually. He promised to change and apologised for making me feel bad, but I’m really not sure I feel enough for him anymore to keep trying. I really need some advice on this – am I’m being selfish and unreasonable to place such importance on sex?”
No, I don’t she’s being selfish or unreasonable. One of the best books on fixing sexless marriages is His Needs, Her Needs: Building an Affair-Proof Marriage – it’s not just about protecting your relationship from affairs. It’s about connecting with your partner so you are happy in your relationship.
Fixing a Sexless Marriage
I don’t think you’re being selfish or unreasonable to want a healthy sex life with your husband. Sex is an important, healthy part of being married! A sexless marriage can make you feel disconnected, alone, and unsatisfied.
It sounds like your husband wants to work on your relationship and is interested in sex to some degree (this reader’s full comment is on Is Your Marriage Over?). He loves you, and wants to work on fixing your sexless marriage. But, it sounds like you think it’s too late. You don’t feel “in love” with him anymore, and aren’t sure if it’s worthwhile to rebuild your marriage.
Rebuilding a healthy sex life
I think you should try to fix your relationship by focusing on reconnecting sexually and emotionally. Divorce is so difficult on so many levels (financially, emotionally, socially, physically) – and it’ll devastate your son. No marriage is perfect, and if you connect with another guy you’ll find a whole new set of problems to fix. If I were you, I’d try to find what I once loved in my husband, and focus on re-igniting sex in our marriage.
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Why do you think you and he have incompatible sexual libidos? Maybe he’s always had a low sex drive, and you’ve always had a stronger one. Maybe your husband has emotional or physical health issues that decrease his libido. Maybe he’s anxious or stressed, and as a result prioritizes sex much lower than you do. Fixing a sexless marriage involves finding the root of the problem, so you can work out a solution.
Fixing a sexless marriage is also about finding ways to meet each other’s needs without splitting up or letting your relationship go sour.
Marriage is hard work. You’ll never feel 100% in love with your husband all the time, and you’ll go through droughts and boring patches. It’s just part of being in a long-term committed relationship with another person.
When your partner seems like a roommate, not a lover
“Once upon a time, you and your partner were having sex like bunnies and then one day you woke up next to someone who’s more like a roommate than a lover,” writes Dr Trina Read in Till Sex Do Us Part: Make Your Married Sex Irresistible. “You love your partner and want to have a stronger intimate bond with him – you just don’t know how. Having infrequent sex – in a society that puts so much value to self-worth on being sexy and sexual – is an uphill battle that millions of couples grapple with every day of their marriage.”
I don’t know if it makes you feel better to know you’re not alone, but the truth is that sexless marriages are the norm. It takes energy and time to make your marriage intimate.
For more tips on increasing intimacy in your relationship, read Emotional Disconnection in Marriage – How to Feel Less Alone.