I recently read an article entitled: “What Sleeping With Married Men Taught Me About Infidelity” and I can honestly tell you that I was shocked, and not for the reasons you think.
This woman purposely hooked up with married men who had no intention of leaving their wives. On their dates, she would ask why they would take the risk of having an affair instead of telling their wives. Now for the shocking part.
They really loved their wives. No, seriously. One of them specifically said he and his wife had raised kids together, built a life together, but he didn’t want to hurt her by expressing his frustration with their sex life. hen she was clearly already feeling bad about it.
It got me to thinking: How many people are having affairs because of sexless marriages? And how many women are avoiding this conversation with their husbands because they’re too ashamed to admit they’ve lost their sex drive?
I’ve read enough blogs on marriage and sex to know that there are married couples aren’t happy with their sex lives, but are too ashamed to admit it.
If you’re a wife who’s been struggling with a low sex drive, YOU ARE NOT ALONE. A lot of other women out there are going through the same thing.
The most common reasons we have a lowered sex drive are:
1. Our changing hormone levels.
As women, our hormone levels change dramatically during and after pregnancy, and around menopause. As a result, our vaginas feel drier and sex may become painful. Who wants to have sex when it hurts all the time? This is also true for those of us who have had immediate menopause after chemotherapy or surgical removal of reproductive organs.
Changing hormone levels and dryness also just makes us feel less sexier. When I had our kids and my husband wanted to have sex, all I could think about was how unsexy I looked with milk leaking from my boobs, C-section scar, and stomach pouch.
2. Our stressful lives.
Low sex drive peaks between 35-64 for women. That sounds like a looong time, but it makes sense. During that time, we’re raising our kids, then caring for aging parents (or maybe both at the same time!), not to mention job challenges. With all these things weighing on our minds, sex is the last thing we’re putting on our calendar! That makes sense since our brains are the largest sexual organ.
3. Our other marital problems.
If you’re not happy with your marriage, of course it’s going to be hard to be intimate with your husband. A woman needs to feel completely relaxed and secure with her partner in order to enjoy sex. Again, our brains are the most important sexual organ. If your mind isn’t into it because you guys keep having fights about money, or he’s not showing you affection during the day but expecting sex at night….well, you get the picture. It simply won’t work.
I’m hoping that by the end of the article you’ll be convinced to have this conversation with your husband and tell him exactly what’s going on in that mind of yours. Yes, he may feel embarrassed at first. Men like to know that they please their wives in bed. It gives their ego a great boost. But hopefully, after the initial embarrassment, your husband will realize that your happiness is more important than his ego. What matters more is that you two get over this hurdle together. Here’s why it’s so important that you talk to him honestly:
You can stop ignoring the elephant in the room.
Some wives tense up the moment they sense their husband wants sex, because they feel guilty or ashamed for not giving him any. Some men can sense it. If he hasn’t brought it up himself, he may be trying to avoid making you feel guilty. Or maybe he’s found other things to keep him occupied: sports, drinking, hanging out with friends, or in a worst-case scenarios, an affair. I’m not saying this to scare anyone, but men experience intimacy differently than we do. Women may be satisfied with more complex things like talking about a book we’ve read, or cuddling on the couch, but men feel loved when their wives give them great sex. Period.
You can start working on solutions.
Once you’ve cleared the air, you can start working together to find solutions. It may be as simple as buying a water-based lubricant at the store, or getting a gym membership so you can have an outlet for your stress. In other cases, you may need to get marital counseling to work through the complex issues that are plaguing your marriage and making you feel disconnected from your husband. Whatever the case may be, strategizing on solutions to a problem will make the problem appear much more manageable than before, when you were struggling with it alone.
Your marriage will be transformed.
Working together to improve your marriage will give you and your husband a renewed sense of intimacy. You’ll feel more connected and be a stronger couple knowing that you got over this hurdle together.
Starting a conversation with your husband about your low sex drive can be embarrassing. But the truth needs to come out. Don’t let it be the “elephant in the room” in your relationship. Don’t let it cause a rift between you. Put the issues out in the open, with the purpose of finding solutions. You’ll find your problems a lot more manageable that way. Sometimes the solutions are so practical you’ll wonder why you avoided talking about it in the first place. Other issues make require time to fix, but knowing that both of you are putting in work to overcome it TOGETHER will renew your sense of closeness and recharge your marriage.
So take that first step and have that conversation. You won’t regret it.
My fellow blogger Sheila Gregoire wrote this great book on bringing sexy back to your marriage. You're welcome!
Till next time!