For various reasons, you may find yourself stuck in a sexless marriage. Lonely. Frustrated. Confused. Bored. Dissatisfied.
Hoping for vibrant sex, couples often seek closeness and physical intimacy. But that’s not the way it always works out. The worst part, you probably can’t find a way to fix it. After all, sex can seem complicated.
Take heart that you don’t have to be stuck in a never-ending sexless cycle. There are answers and solutions.
Defining the Sexless Marriage
For some, a sexless marriage equates to no sex. Ever. Much of the time, marriages of this nature are kiss-less and touch-less as well.
Other couples define being stuck in a sexless marriage as one or both partners being sexually dissatisfied. In short, the spark has fizzled out. It likely comes as no surprise that we often categorized these types of relationships with the large group of long-term couples who only have sex 10 times a year or less. Sex is often a vital expression of intimacy in a relationship. When you realize that you’re not having it, have no doubt that your partner realizes it, too.
Some of the Most Common Causes for Loss of Sexual Intimacy
Obvious causes for your dry spell may include welcoming a new baby to the family or other physical culprits such as pregnancy, menopause, erective dysfunction, chronic pain or other health concerns.
Perhaps you’re experiencing more conflict in your relationship than usual and growing emotional distance or negativity could be to blame. Maybe, you’re on different pages concerning sexual preferences or sex drives (as in the case of many asexual individuals or those experiencing a low libido.) Alternatively, you might be a couple who care a great deal for each other but find that your sex life has become bland and too routine.
The goal of sex therapy is to maintain this secure, loving connection while nurturing the erotic energy in your relationship. Sex therapist, Esther Perel, writes eloquently about this tension between wanting familiarity while also desiring novelty and excitement in her bestseller, Mating in Captivity.
How to Tell When Lack of Sex Is a Problem
Being stuck in a sexless marriage becomes a problem when it negatively impacts your relationship. Meaning, one of you has stopped valuing sex as a critical part of maintaining intimacy. Not only does this line of thinking promote discord but it can also breed resentment.
Perhaps you felt differently when you entered into the marriage. Now, maybe your libido doesn’t match your partner’s. Or you identify more as an asexual. Keep in mind that you are not the problem. The lack of sexual intimacy is the problem.
Sex therapy isn’t meant to scold you for feeling asexual or having a low libido. Its purpose is to help you uncover the reasons why you’re stuck in a sexless marriage and help you connect with your partner again.
What to Do About a Sexless Marriage
Rather than suffering in silence, it’s better to seek help when you first spot that there is a problem. Talk to your partner about your concerns in a nonjudgmental way and present the idea of therapy to help you both overcome the roadblock.
Remember that when you’ve been out of the saddle for a while, it’s harder to get back into it. Meaning, re-establishing intimacy in your relationship is going to be difficult without the help of a judgment-free third party like a therapist.
Most things related to sexual intimacy are slow-moving and relished. However, if ever there was a time to move with haste, now would be it.
If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you overcome the sexless part of your marriage and re-establish intimacy in your lives, please visit our Sex Therapy page.
We invite you to call us for a 15-minute free consultation to discuss your specific needs and any questions and you may have about couples sex therapy and our practice.