"Not Tonight Dear"

This time it’s not the female partner rejecting sexual advances.  About 15% of men report not being in the mood for sex.  Men’s low desire can be caused by any number of things – erectile dysfunction (ED), fear of undesirable outcomes, not feeling close to his partner, lack of attraction, lack of experimentation and variety, questioning sexual orientation, extensive use of porn, infidelity, depression, illness, medications and unhealthy lifestyles such as alcohol or drug abuse and lack of exercise and lack of sleep.

What can be done?  The first priority is to get a physical to rule out any medical issues that may be causing or contributing to low sexual desire.  Your doctor can evaluate medicines you are taking that could decrease desire and can add medication that may be indicated.

Drop unhealthy lifestyles.  Eat healthfully, exercise, get proper sleep and decrease use of alcohol and harmful drugs.

When these two areas have been addressed, begin with an honest discussion with your mate about what’s happening and how you are feeling about it.  Be sure to ask and then listen to how your partner feels.  Talk about what each of you likes, dislikes and what helps you feel aroused along with what resources you might explore together.  Remember to engage in non-sexual touching and cuddling as well.  What seems like a very scary conversation can actually bring you and your partner closer.  Your partner may become your best ally in supporting you through a difficult time of low sexual desire. 

Take a couple’s relationship deepening class or workshop to strengthen your communication and listening skills and to help you tackle some of those more difficult conversations.  Hold Me Tight® Couples Retreats devote an entire conversation to sex after couples have completed 5 other conversations to deepen their bond and create a stronger connection.  Couples complete these conversations privately and sometimes with the assistance of the therapist. 

Generally, in relationships the partner with the lowest desire ends up controlling the sexual relationship.   The partner who has the higher desire may feel rejected, hurt and angry.  If these feelings are left to fester, resentment builds, and the relationship suffers resulting in cyclical arguments and unhappiness.

When one partner initiates and the other is not in the mood, a good solution in the lower desire of the male partner would be that he be willing to pleasure his partner.  Healthy, loving relationships are built on mutual care taking.  Doing this will help one’s partner feel loved, wanted, and attractive which all lead to feeling emotionally connected.

I’ve had many clients tell me they are not always in the mood when their partner initiates sex, but that after some snuggling, cuddling and touching that increases oxytocin,  they are.  So, just try it; get started.  Desire is not always spontaneous, and arousal may need to come first.


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