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he rarely wants to have sex


RedonontheWall

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My boyfriend and I have been dating for 15 months. He was the first person I had ever slept with. In the beginning -- guess what -- making love with him was wonderful. He was amazing in the bedroom. Lots of foreplay, very attentive, he took his time. Even throughout all the problems we've had, our sex life was great and I took for granted at the time how much it meant to me.

 

Then after we had been dating for 6, 7 months, all at once he had no interest. He told me it was because he was on an antidepressant (lexapro) and so I was understanding about it and never complained as he adjusted to it. Eventually he switched to something else (welbutrin) so his sex drive could get back to normal, and afterwards things seemed to get better, but not for long.

 

Starting around this past Christmas, he has been cold as ice when it comes to ANYTHING intimate, whether it be lovemaking, holding hands, making out, etc. I have to initiate everything and he is not shy about rejecting me. At first, this merely annoyed me, but now that its been going on for so long I am so sad I cannot even find the words. I've never been in a relationship where it seems so obvious my partner finds me unattractive. I mean, sometimes we will be in the middle of foreplay, and he'll be like "okay I'm sleepy, I need to go to bed." This has been such an ongoing problem and I realize constantly fighting about it isn't going to help, but I'm so distressed I cannot shut up about it. I feel like I've tried everything from dressing sexier, asking him if there is anything different that he'd like to try in the bedroom, initiating or giving him opportunity to initiate, I mean I am out of ideas and he puts forth minimal effort.

 

To be fair, he has said he is not good at being romantic, he's not very emotional, etc. But the only time I can even get him to make an effort is if I throw a fit about it and get in a bad mood. And then I strongly feel like he's only going through the motions to shut me up. And, this may sound a little sick, but I almost wonder if a part of him likes having the girlfriend who always wants to get it on to the point where she gets upset if he doesn't. I know, that sounds crazy, but I've been thinking about this a lot and given that he's usually the one who has been rejected in his past relationships, I cannot help but wonder if he's subconsciously thinking this way.

 

I guess I'm perplexed. Why wouldn't a guy want to have sex with his girlfriend if everything else is okay? In the beginning it was clear he was attracted to me. Now, I always question whether he is or not and I'm going insane. And my self-esteem is nil, I don't think I could feel sexy if I tried. So we're in this bad cycle of some kind.

 

I don't really know what my question is or what sort of advice I'm seeking. I'm extremely sad at the moment. No matter how much I convey to him how much this is hurting us, he doesn't seem to care. From time to time he'll do just enough to make me believe things are changing. He'll dutifully make out with me for a while and maybe get it on real quick before bed, but I can see his heart is not in it. Other than this, he doesn't seem to have a problem in our relationship, but clearly I don't know what he's thinking.

 

I hate to give up on a relationship because of this. It seems so shallow. But I'm so hurt, I find him extremely attractive and feel very creepy always trying to get him to make love to me and then getting dissed. And I can't help but think maybe I'm putting too much pressure on him and its killing the mood? I dunno. I think I'll tell myself anything, make up any sort of excuse, anything than he doesn't find me attractive anymore. I'm just completely lost. I'm 27 years old, and he's 35 by the way and we've only been dating for a year so I feel like our relationship is too "new" to be having this problem. I know I sound like an insecure mess, but I swear I wasn't always this way, just when this started happening.

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have you talked to him about how much this bothers you? And if you have, then what does he say?

 

i would stop initiating anything for the time being and see what happens. He may be so used to you coming on to him that he doesn't feel the need to put in the effort anymore. Or maybe his meds are killing his sex drive so he's not in the mood. I'm curious though, what does he tell you when you initiate things?

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Hmm, hate to be blunt and make assumptions, but do you believe he's been faithful to you all this time?

 

The medication really might have a lot to do with it, though...even if he switched to one that was supposed to be better than the first, you'd be surprised what medicine can do to a person's sex drive.

 

I agree that you should stop initiating for a bit and see if his behavior toward the situation changes at all. Maybe your initiating all the time, over time, has made it seem more like you're pressuring him rather than simply coming on to him. And maybe if you stop for a little while, he'll feel less like he's pressured and more like it's something he can enjoy with you.

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have you talked to him about how much this bothers you? And if you have, then what does he say?

 

i would stop initiating anything for the time being and see what happens. He may be so used to you coming on to him that he doesn't feel the need to put in the effort anymore. Or maybe his meds are killing his sex drive so he's not in the mood. I'm curious though, what does he tell you when you initiate things?

 

Well, generally he'll say he is simply too tired, its too late at night, and doesn't have the energy. If I get upset, he'll sometimes try a bit to reassure me that its not me. He really doesn't say too much, when I think back to what he has said to answer your question I just hear him saying "But I'm sleeeeepy." He's also said he's fine with everything we've been doing, doesn't want to do anything different. He'll say he'll try to be more attentive, etc. and will initiate one time after he says that, then it won't happen again until I bring it up.

 

That reminds me of another thing. When he actually does want to make love, its almost always in the dark. No light, no candle, he can't see me and I can't see him. I've mentioned that this bothers me and so afterwards he would bring a candle in, but he only will if I say something. In the beginning of our relationship, he would bring in a little light so we could see each other.

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I strongly suggest you gain his respect by putting efforts to build yourself so he'll see you in a new light.

 

Merely being a girl and use beauty is just not enough.

 

Thanks, I have thought of this myself. And I don't mean to sound pitiful, its just so hard to do when you feel this way. It really is a devastating feeling. I feel like the only way I can really "build myself" back up is to leave the relationship. But I have to ask myself if that would be a horrible mistake?

 

At this point, its just very hard for me to take it easy, ignore it, and pretend everything is fine. I love my boyfriend, which makes the decision even harder. I'd hate to leave if there really is hope, but don't know how much more of a beating my self-esteem can take. In the meantime, my insecurity makes me less attractive. I wish I knew how to get out of the cycle, help myself, get him interested again and keep the relationship.

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okay so my GUESS is one of two things : he's either gotten lazy and ( i really don't want to ask this but I'll throw it out anyways): are you sure there's not anyone else? From what you have said, i didn't want to worry you but it was just a thought that popped into my head.

 

For now though, i would stop initiating for a while and see if things change

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Hmm, hate to be blunt and make assumptions, but do you believe he's been faithful to you all this time?

 

The medication really might have a lot to do with it, though...even if he switched to one that was supposed to be better than the first, you'd be surprised what medicine can do to a person's sex drive.

 

I agree that you should stop initiating for a bit and see if his behavior toward the situation changes at all. Maybe your initiating all the time, over time, has made it seem more like you're pressuring him rather than simply coming on to him. And maybe if you stop for a little while, he'll feel less like he's pressured and more like it's something he can enjoy with you.

 

I was thinking he might be cheating on me a while back but am now certain that he's not. And I also think his meds are fine, he's doesn't cite them as the problem anymore and know he would have by now if that was the case.

 

I've gone through a few periods (of about a week or so) of not initiating and nothing much happens. I guess I could completely be quiet about it, take care of myself and put on a bit of an act like nothing is bothering me. But I'm so worn down by this situation, its taking its toll.

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if it's really hurting you, i would just not see him as often. Give yourself some time away from him and think about what you really want. He needs to put in effort here to show you he still finds you attractive and wants you. And it seems like he is aware of this since you have talked to him about it on more than one occasion.

 

If this is a dealbreaker for you, then just stop seeing him altogether. you shouldn't have to constantly be vying for some love and attention from him. Just stop paying attention to him and see if he starts coming your way, this relationship will only work if he does his part also.

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if it's really hurting you, i would just not see him as often. Give yourself some time away from him and think about what you really want. He needs to put in effort here to show you he still finds you attractive and wants you. And it seems like he is aware of this since you have talked to him about it on more than one occasion.

 

If this is a dealbreaker for you, then just stop seeing him altogether. you shouldn't have to constantly be vying for some love and attention from him. Just stop paying attention to him and see if he starts coming your way, this relationship will only work if he does his part also.

 

I think this is what I will do. I am just not ready to break up yet and am getting snappy and irritable towards him, on top of everything else.

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I've been in two relationships (one around 2 years, the other close to 3) where I felt nagged nonstop for sex, so I feel confident I can speak for your bf. Here’s my 2 cents.

 

1. He's not cheating on you. You're still the most important thing in his life, and he'd do just about anything for you. It's not an issue about attraction or love.

 

2. When he says he's tired, he's actually tired. Once the endorphins and adrenaline associated with being in a new relationship wear off, outside factors like work and school start having their natural effect on the body. At this point, he's probably so genuinely tired from work and whatever else, that Scarlett Johannsen and Jessica Biel could be in front of him wearing nothing but each other, and all that would be on his mind is taking a nap.

 

3. You're right in that sex has become a chore for him. It's not your fault that you need more sex, but it's not really his fault that his libido is drained right now. However, nagging him for sex (yes, no offense, but you're nagging) will only continue to make the situation worse. He's going to start to resent you for not understanding what he's going through (if he doesn't already), and he'll see you as domineering and controlling, which will kill his drive even more. The more you pressure him for sex, the more you emasculate him. Keep in mind that no guy wants to feel like he can't satisfy his gf or wife. You mentioned your self-esteem is low, but I guarantee you that his is just as low.

 

4. His putting forth effort to at least try and please you means he obviously still cares. I can understand that you hate feeling like a charity case or that you're "raping" (as one of my ex's referred to the ordeal) him, but keep in mind he's trying for you. You can resent him for making you feel this way, and you have a right to, but realize it won't help the situation.

 

5. The reason he's starting to withhold other forms of emotional contact is because he's afraid of leading you on with regard to the chances of sex. I'm sure at some point you guys talked about how you felt you were being teased and lead on at times, so he's become overly conscious of this.

 

6. When I was in these situations, my gfs tried what others are suggesting and announced to me that they were going to withhold sex until I started initiating it. Well, I can tell you exactly what will happen to you in this case. Your bf, knowing how important this is to you, will go out of his way to have sex with you for the first few nights. After that, his efforts will slowly decline (because keep in mind, pleasing you is still a chore) until you're back to your current situation a week or two from now.

 

7. Here's my advice. Go ahead and "withhold" sex but don't tell him about it. Don't talk to him about the subject at all, and be as loving and supportive as you can, even if it means you have to hold back your true feelings. Lay with him and be affectionate. Keep in mind he might say or do things that you perceive as sexually initiating, but you have to keep your feelings in check if things don't happen when you expect them to. Remember he's not teasing you to be a jerk- he probably doesn't even realizing he's turning you on. Anyway keep this up for about a week, and see what happens. Do whatever you have to do in order to get through this from a sexual standpoint.

 

8. Ultimately, keep in mind that you have every right to be sexually satisfied in a long-term relationship, so don't feel guilty or shallow if you have to break things off. I was absolutely devastated when my 3-year relationship ended- I couldn't function for almost a year. In retrospect though, I can honestly say it was the best thing for both of us, and I genuinely hope that she found someone who fulfills all her needs.

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any updates?

 

I'm distancing myself in stealth mode. I'm not being a nag or mean about it, just acting like everything is fine while not paying him any sexual attention.

 

I won't be able to say whether or not this is working for a while. I want to give it a couple of weeks at least. So far the biggest change is how I feel about myself. Now that I've started pretending like its not a problem, its become easier for me to carry on about my day and not worry about it. Maybe the best solution here was the most obvious one.

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I'm distancing myself in stealth mode. I'm not being a nag or mean about it, just acting like everything is fine while not paying him any sexual attention.

 

I won't be able to say whether or not this is working for a while. I want to give it a couple of weeks at least. So far the biggest change is how I feel about myself. Now that I've started pretending like its not a problem, its become easier for me to carry on about my day and not worry about it. Maybe the best solution here was the most obvious one.

 

I can see that'll work. The bad way of putting what you're doing is that you're 'gaming' him. But aside from the sex and being wanted, you won't get anything else from him in the long run. It's like playing with his impulse.

 

Again, even without the sex, I'm still going to stress on the fact that you want him to go, "Wow, I never saw that side of her before. This girl's got what it takes. She's making me feel proud I have her around." Think about what you need to do to achieve that when you feel better about yourself.

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I can see that'll work. The bad way of putting what you're doing is that you're 'gaming' him. But aside from the sex and being wanted, you won't get anything else from him in the long run. It's like playing with his impulse.

 

Again, even without the sex, I'm still going to stress on the fact that you want him to go, "Wow, I never saw that side of her before. This girl's got what it takes. She's making me feel proud I have her around." Think about what you need to do to achieve that when you feel better about yourself.

 

Not really. I'm just not making a big deal about it like I have been.

 

Nevertheless, I see your point. And you may be right there too. Its all cyclical. I feel bad about the situation --> low self-esteem --> not attractive to him. I get it, but that's a long term issue. Not making any moves on him for a while and leaving him alone without being irate is good for the short term.

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