Q. I have been married for over three years and have a six month baby. Right from the beginning of my marriage, my husband seemed to be satisfied with sex only about once a month. Throughout my pregnancy he refused to have sex saying that it would harm the baby though I showed him on medical sites in the Internet that it would not. Now also he gives excuses. We have not had sex since an year! I do not understand this as he is otherwise a helpful and caring husband and I am also absolutely sure that he does not have any affair with anyone. His actions too show that he loves me I have often tried to give hints that I could do with more and that our relationship is more like best friends than like a husband and wife but he does not get the hint -what should I do? What do I do?
This situation is known as “discrepant libidos”. This is a common cause for sexual dissatisfaction in a relationship. As in all other areas of a relationship, it is extremely important to ‘communicate’ to your husband your sexual desires, albeit in a manner that is not threatening to his ‘manhood’.
It is best if you communicate your needs to him in a friendly, non-complaining manner, or else it could be self-defeating. Avoid sounding demanding, critical or accusatory. A good understanding of each other’s needs through free and frank communication, is key to a fulfilling relationship. Also the openness and readiness to experiment with each other can enhance the sexual pleasure for both. As he is so caring towards you, your communication will further help him to understand you and your needs.
If there is no proper communication, it inevitably turns into a lose-lose situation. The partner who has the higher sex drive is very likely to feel rejected and hurt when sex does not happen, and the partner with a lower drive feels pressured and resentful at having to perform even when he doesn't feel up to it. Conversely, it can be a situation where both partners make some adjustments. The one with a higher drive needs to understand that everyone is different and naturally have their own drives and whenever they do not jive it should not be taken as personal rejection. Finding ways to seduce the partner and bring him to a state where he could be aroused, could be helpful to bridge the gap. Dealing with one’s own sexual feelings by masturbating is another approach. The partner with the lower drive needs to understand that their partner is not trying to pressure them. Responding to some of the non-sexual cues of the active partner might help them to arrive at a place where they might become interested.
If your husband responds positively to discussing your sexual relationship, and each other’s likes and dislikes, then you are on your way to solving your problems. One thing you should know is that very few couples intuitively know how to pleasure each other. To create a mutually satisfying and loving sexual relationship takes awareness, openness and knowledge.
Consulting a sex therapist personally is also recommended, as it will take care of any myths and misconceptions in the minds of either one or both of you, which may be causing the problem.