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Forums / Relationship and family issues / My boyfriend never wants to have sex with me

Topic: My boyfriend never wants to have sex with me

  1. blue_belle
    blue_belle avatar
    1 posts
    24 August 2016


    I'm a 30 y/o woman in a long term relationship with a 29 y/o guy.

    I suffer from bi-polar (mostly under control) & he suffers from anxiety & depression (he is on meds)

    We have been together for 2.5 years, live together, have created a home & life together & we would like to head in the direction of marriage.

    In the past year, the sex has gone from amazing & frequent to non-existent... even before he started medications he has just not wanted it.

    He never initiates anymore, & then gets annoyed with me because he feels i don't initiate. The unfortunate thing is, that i really do try... but every time i do he is tired, or sick or not in the mood, or has something more important to do, or tells me my timing is terrible... so then i ask to plan it & he tells me it will feel forced & not spontaneous... but when i am being spontaneous - refer to the above. I've stopped initiating it. We are lucky if we have sex once a month, usually it is less than that & we are both physically fit, healthy & attractive.

    I feel so hurt, rejected & ugly. My self confidence is now non-existent from being constantly rejected. My self esteem is shot & i am so down on myself. He said this makes it worse & it doesn't really make him feel like he wants me when i am so down... but i am so down because he doesn't want me! It is a vicious cycle :(

    I really tried to open up to him the other day & talk to him about it. I was so scared & anxious. I felt physically sick because i knew he would get the shits. Anyway, i told him how i felt & he got upset with me & told me that i shouldn't put all the blame on him & i am acting like he is the reason i feel so down about myself... (even though it is true) he got very defensive even though i told him that i was finding it difficult to talk to him about it & was worried of the consequences & i was only telling him because i love him & want us to work. I don't know what to do. I travel a lot for work & he won't even be intimate with me before i leave for a week away... then nothing when i get back.

    He told me the other night before i left to go away for work, that he wanted to do it... then i went & prepared all excited, nice perfume etc... & all he wanted to do was lay on the couch. He told me he felt too awkward & forced. What do i do? I'm so depressed. He is great & i love him & want to be with him but i don't want to be in a sexless relationship forever, especially when i feel we can't talk openly about these things.

    I'm so down.

    6 people found this helpful
  2. Apollo Black
    Apollo Black avatar
    401 posts
    24 August 2016 in reply to blue_belle

    I can't quite understand it. He doesn't initiate anymore but complains that you don't initiate - so you initiate and he blows you off.

    Naturally I'd be concerned he's getting it elsewhere and this seriously needs to be considered. Maybe keep an eye out for it rather than confronting it directly.

    I'm also not the best to comment as I'm a man from a terminal sexless marriage - and advice is best sought from those more experienced in these matters (i.e. I'm not going to say "I'd die for my partner to be wanting more sex with me). He seems a little too young to have issues with low testosterone so my bet is that he's getting sex elsewhere. Athol Kay's website is aimed at married men with low sex marriages, however it is very supportive of women suffering from low sex relationships - supporting getting to the bottom of the issue with a great team on their forum. Google his name and see how you go, but your issue is something they may be able to help with. Ultimately you're a healthy woman with completely normal needs. If he is unable to address the issue in a reasonable manner and there is no health problem explanation for his low sex drive, particularly if he's minimizing it's affect on your self esteem then you need to consider if you want to be in the relationship

    3 people found this helpful
  3. TheSteve
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    TheSteve avatar
    281 posts
    25 August 2016 in reply to blue_belle

    Hi Blue Belle,

    Thanks for sharing your story and sorry to hear what you are going through. Apollo makes some good points - whether or not (there is no need to jump to conclusions, but Apollo is 100% correct in pointing this out as something that needs to be looked into) he is getting it "elsewhere", at the end of the day you have a problem that need to be addressed.

    It could well be the medication he is on has simply destroyed his sex drive. Anxiety/depression meds are well known to annihilate a healthy man's drive. It could be his T levels. He could be fatigued - sex takes effort so naturally he would avoid it in this case. He may not be a highly sexual person - the beginning of relationships are always filled with more sex than one can handle, and it naturally tapers off to a degree as time goes by. Perhaps (I say this seriously, not as an accusation but again as a possibility) he prefers to masturbate - does he watch porn/have you ever found it on his phone?

    Honestly, there could be a dozen potential causes here, but I can tell you which is NOT a cause. And that is a healthy 30 year old, attractive woman wanting to have sex with him. That woman, you, are NOT the problem mark my words. I am in my 30's and can tell you that it is not you - period, end. Don't get down on yourself, please.

    If you want to salvage the relationship, clearly it needs to be addressed. Will he be willing to talk with you about it? Will he be willing to see a doctor or counselor with you? Can you slip him some advice via email or in a book he is reading (ie: print some advice off a men's health site)? You know him better than we do, but no, it is not "normal" for a 29 year old man, healthy, to constantly avoid sex. There is a cause, and you need to explore it together to fix this. If you try to do it all by yourself, you'll anger him and become even more down on you.

    We are here if you need to chat, all the best.


    1 person found this helpful
  4. Golden Brown
    Golden Brown avatar
    1 posts
    25 August 2016 in reply to blue_belle

    Hi blue bell,

    I was looking for posts like yours to try and help myself. I feel so sad all the time as I have the same issue with my partner. We are both 35. I love him so much and I feel very attracted to him but he doesn't seem to feel the same. He loves me I know that but has no passion towards me and never initiates sex with me. I have had countless arguments with him as I feel as if he is deceiving me in some way. I have suffered from depression and anxiety so his behaviour brings all my insecurities out. I doubt his feeling and intentions. I have thought and felt the worst. For instance that he is gay. That he has sex with other people. That he doesn't really love me but just wants someone so he isn't lonely. Like u we have built a life together. But the intimacy isn't there and it feels like it's destroying me in a way because I can't deal with it. He is great in every other aspect and will go the extra mile for me in everything else but not in sex. We have sex once a week and only when I initiate it-he never does. And then the sex is always the same. Like he doesnt really care about it. I don't know why excactly I am writing here. I feel desperate and trapped in my feelings and I need to find a way to get out of this.

    Sorry that I don't have an answer or any advice for you. At least you know you aren't alone and there are other women in similar situations.

    i hope we both find a way to make this better

    2 people found this helpful
  5. romantic_thi3f
    Community Champion
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    romantic_thi3f avatar
    2598 posts
    25 August 2016 in reply to blue_belle

    Hi blue_belle,

    Welcome to the forums and thanks for posting.

    I can see that there's been some great replies here. I'm so sorry that you're in this situation. I've been in this place before and I know how it can feel; it's such a vicious cycle when all you want is for things to get better but things keep circling round and round.

    The good thing is though is that you can stop the cycle. The fact that you've recognised that there's a cycle is a big step. Often in relationships with these sorts of issues not being able to recognise it is half the battle. I'm just wondering if you've considered talking this over with a sex therapist? I know it can be daunting but theres a great one at ShineSA (or you could try Relationships Australia -

    One of the biggest things that I found was key with my own experiences was communication. You said that he won't initiate because you won't initiate and that he feels blamed and that he's the reason you feel down on yourself. That to me sounds like he's being defensive. I understand it though. I also understand that you don't want to initiate because you've been rejected. It sucks but nobody is to blame.

    One thing that you might find helpful when communicating about this is the Repair checklist by the Gottmann Institute; basically the short version is using I statements and focusing on how you feel and working towards solutions rather than how awful it is -

    Another thing that might be helpful is instead of switching the focus to 'sex' try aiming for intimacy; things like kisses and cuddles. That way the mindset is away from being rejected or whose initiating what but instead on just feeling good and close.

    Hope this helps :)

    1 person found this helpful
  6. Alove
    Alove avatar
    16 posts
    27 August 2016 in reply to blue_belle

    Hi blue bell

    i am in a similar situation.Ive been with my girlfriend for 9months and the sex has stopped.Like the affection has too.She has suffered from anxiety/depression since 16yrs old and she's been on meds since.And I understand some can supress the sex drive.I suffer from anxiety and trust issues and am seeking help.

    i too always have to initiate things...I am a fairly sexual person and damn attracted to my girlfriend.She says she loves me ect.But the connection is lacking due to the no sex.And it too is leaving me feeling rejected and ugly.

    no matter how many Romantic things I do for her it dosent help.When I talk to her and say I feel she dosent want me anymore she says it's not true but she feels we are lacking passion and I need to just grab her and kiss her.

    how am I suppose to do this when she rejects my kisses ect.

    so your not alone love...I feel your pain xo

  7. geoff
    Life Member
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    geoff avatar
    12962 posts
    28 August 2016 in reply to blue_belle
    hello B-B, there have been some great words by those above and when a healthly relationship or marriage does have a good sexual life by the two of you then everything else just goes along so well, you can disagree and agree which doesn't cause any problems, so your communication between the two of you is how you want it to be, but as soon as one particular issue becomes an issue then problems do begin.
    Sex is a lovely way to satisfy the connection, it makes a happy way to share most things in the marriage, but when it is stopped or pushed away by one partner, and in this case your partner, then many problems start to evolve, disappointments, arguments begin and questions why.
    My wife (ex) usually initated sex before we got married, but once we were then the brakes were put on, and 9 times out of 10 her answer was always no, so I gave up asking.
    It does frustrate you when he says no, because then you start to doubt yourself, am I getting older, I am putting on weight, or doesn't he find me attractive any more and even though he says no do you actually believe what he is saying.
    I do wonder whether his whole mood has changed and if you believe so then he could be suffering from some type of depression, I can't diagnose this myself, but if you were my sister then that's what I would say to you, because with this illness it certainly stops any urge for someone to want to have sex.
    Ask him to do the K-10 test, which will give him a score of whether or not he is suffering from depression, I do appreciate that he may say 'why do I need to', but it's probably good for anyone to test themselves at different times, even if they are feeling great, because many times people cover up their depression by putting on a brave face, making out that all is OK. Geoff. x
    1 person found this helpful
  8. Phnx2405
    Phnx2405 avatar
    20 posts
    30 August 2016

    Hi Blue

    I was in a similar situation but i was the guy. My depression destroy and curtailed any sexual desires or urges. I loved my girlfriend dearly. adored her but my sex drive just no longer existed. No matter what she tried, whether initiate or talk about it. I didn't want a bar of it and it hurt coz i knew she was hurting but i was so lost, spiralling out of control. I hated life, I hated me. why would anyone want me, i was saving her from making a big mistake right? even though we were a couple and in love i still managed to think that. think i was such a waste that i was saving her the shame. truely messed up.

    we were in our early 20's at the time. we started off great but i neglected myself too long and relied on her to be my sunshine. it got to the point where neither one of us wanted it. we relied on each other in so many ways but for the last 12 months of the relationship there was no intimacy... in fact, i didn't have sex for 4 years. in my 20's, how obscene. but i had no interest, no confidence, no conceivable reason to try. to this day i still feel that way at times.

    the point is.. it happens. you are not alone. it's neither you or your partner's fault. It's painful, confusing and trying but you have my support. you have all our support. This isn't just a sex thing, it's a mental well being thing as well. You have to look after yourself as much as your partner. It'll take time and patience and maybe lots of tears. stay strong.

    this may have been useless, i'm sorry i can't supply a solution.

    5 people found this helpful
  9. Molly06
    Molly06 avatar
    47 posts
    31 August 2016


    So sorry to hear what you are going through. I have been in a almost sexless marriage for a while now, once or twice a month but it was me who didn't want it.

    I had no desire, I was tired and worn out and it just never seemed the right time, I did change meds and that helped for a bit but they really can kill your sex drive.

    Try looking up some articles on varying libidos in s relationships.

    I wouldn't assume that he is getting it elsewhere as I certainly wasn't and didn't want to but maybe try to see if there is anything that he "nags " you about that might seem trivial to you , things that keep coming up. Maybe it's some of those things , he might be annoyed about some things and it's projecting to sex life.

    i know for me there has to be that emotional connection so if I have lost that I won't want sex

    i hope this helps

    1 person found this helpful
  10. SparklyUnicorn
    SparklyUnicorn avatar
    2 posts
    10 November 2017 in reply to Golden Brown

    Don't worry 'Golden Brown', I too came here to help find answers for myself so your girls aren't alone out there in feeling trapped with these issues. I'm 24, my boyfriend 23, we are not unhealthy, and have been together for 8 years now. I've tried literally everything to help the issue; be it trying to help him want sex or to try and want it less for myself, but sadly nothing works. I truly wish that I were more helpful 'blue-belle'! I'll certainly post if I find something that works! I mean heck, surely I'm too young to be worrying about a relationship without sex.

    All this talk of the man 'getting it from somewhere else' has me worried, but surely that can't be the case for us girls otherwise if they were feeling bad enough to not have sex with us after cheating then surely they would have confessed by now. I am at the point where I want to see a professional about our issues or have the man go see a doctor, but he seems to have no interest. It would obviously seem like an easy solution for us all to just leave our relationships, but we're all here because we're deeply invested in our love for our men.

    Thank you 'romantic_thi3f' for your comment about a sex therapist, working on solutions instead of seeing the negatives and to aim for intimacy. Hopefully it will work for us all! I presume these methods took a while for things to work for you? Was your partner also lacking enthusiasm to help the issue at first?

    Again I am not very helpful but I will definitely post if (hopefully) I can find something that works. Although it's terrible that other's feel the same, it's nice to know that I'm not the only one with this issue.

  11. Juliet_84
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    Juliet_84 avatar
    365 posts
    14 November 2017 in reply to blue_belle

    I think he is being deliberately misleading/defensive in his responses because, like a lot of men in this area, does not want to admit that he has a problem. So he doesn't initiate but then gets angry at you for not initiating as a form of deflection, in the same way that he blamed you for "forcing things" by getting dressed up and wearing perfume etc. I know that it is frustrating and very hard not to take it personally, as women no longer feel desired in this, but it literally has nothing to do with you. This is his issue unfortunately, one thing that I do agree with him on is that undue pressure on him is going to exacerbate this. That being said, he also needs to face facts and talk about this more openly instead of blame you.

  12. rhinoceros
    rhinoceros avatar
    141 posts
    15 November 2017 in reply to Juliet_84

    I'm in a long term relationship and my girlfriend and I have(and are still having) difficulties in the bedroom department. Unfortunately I was on medication that had a severe effect on my ability to perform in the bedroom. This happened several times, my girlfriend was understanding at first but eventually stopped being so understanding. There's no word to describe how demoralising and how pathetic it made me feel. I felt (and still do to an extent) like I'm not a 'real' man.

    My depression was manageable before but after these problems it spiralled out of control.

    I remember one instance where I couldn't 'perform' - I was screamed at, verbally abused and left to cry myself to sleep. Just recalling this experience to share here is painful.

    My medication situation is okay now- everything functions as it should- but I am scared of intimacy now after these horrific experiences. I see a sex therapist and am making positive progress but the key to getting anywhere with things like this is communication. For quite some time I was scared to bring up the topic with my girlfriend in fear of being scolded.

    My girlfriend felt as if I didn't love her or find her attractive. She couldn't have been more wrong, but I can completely understand why she felt that way.

    We are working through these issues now, my girlfriend is much more understanding now, and I'm working hard to ensure I communicate properly.I do see a light at the end this awful tunnel, where as a few months ago I didn't.

    1 person found this helpful
  13. Juliet_84
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    365 posts
    15 November 2017 in reply to rhinoceros


    I'm so sorry that your girlfriend reacted that way, that must have been traumatic for you. My most recent ex (we broke up for other reasons) had issues in the bedroom department too, but it honestly didn't bother me one bit, all I cared about was that he was having a good time with me and felt comfortable, and we worked with what we had on the day and after time it actually became a non-issue because he felt so relaxed in a judgment-free environment. There's a quote that goes "watch carefully the magic that occurs, when you give a person just enough comfort to be themselves", it's what I would most like in a person so I try and be that for someone else. But I think communication is key. We're all insecure in relationships, and so there is always that doubt that "maybe I'm not enough" "maybe they don't find me attractive", and so I think reassurance is key. There's nothing for men to be ashamed of, women are just spoilt that there's no such pressure for us so we don't really understand.

  14. RexyA
    RexyA avatar
    1 posts
    1 February 2018 in reply to blue_belle

    Hi Blue_Belle

    I am in the exact same position as you are however I am 23yo and my partner is 26. We are lucky if we have sex once every two months. We are both fit and active and in love too but the only thing that lacks is sex. I have also tried approaching him about it, even burst into tears because i was so embarrassed to be so upset about the topic. He also reacted the same way as your partner saying that me wanting it made him not want it, but he didnt want to be the one to always initiate it, when I try to initiate it he mocks me or just yawns and says he is tired.

    I wouldnt jump to conclusions to say that he is cheating or anything, some women in fact have a higher sex drive than males.

    It definitely isn't normal though. I have read alot of different articles on this particular topic, there are a few things that have stuck out to me - maybe try increasing (his - but if you want to be subtle you both could do it) intake more fat in your diet. Now i don't mean sugary fats but i mean the healthy fats such as Avocado or almonds. These apparently increase testosterone levels. Also, when it comes to the act, don't 'prep' yourself, maybe, when you are both lying in bed, start slowly trying to seduce him or do something (that you may normally do like cuddling or something) and try to make the seduction semi-normal... My partner also told me that he doesn't want too much foreplay because he just 'loses interest' and he doesn't want it to be forced and I have to pick up on some kind of clue that he is in the mood, right at that second, otherwise he just won't be in the mood.

    Also, lack of sleep will affect his sex drive and if he has alot on his mind (with regards to his anxiety and depression) that definitely lowers the sex drive too.

    Take it one day at a time. Maybe try increasing the good fat intake, maybe exercising more, or don't exercise 3 hours before you go to sleep, and try getting more sleep. If he says he is 'keen', just go straight for it (up to you).

    Ultimately though, i have been considering this decision myself lately, if he doesn't come to the party or try - then you need to evaluate whether he is in fact meeting your needs?

    I hope this helps!

  15. Flashx
    Flashx avatar
    1 posts
    21 March 2018
    Like many of you here, I too have a partner that has given up on sex but what’s worse is that he makes me feel terrible when I bring it up, it doesn’t matter what I do, he just doesn’t want to engage or even look at me let alone touch me. If I try to get him aroused, he grabs my hand and throws it away, it makes me feel so terrible inside, it’s been years, so long that I can’t remember. I feel like I’m a nun, I’m just expected to have no sexual love life and it hurts deeply. I’ve concidered breaking up with him but I love him. Sometimes I get so angry about it that I consider cheating on him but I couldn’t live with myself if I did. Having a sexless life is a cruel, it’s a basic need and he’s denying that need. I don’t know what to do, sounds like I’m not the only one grieving through this.
    2 people found this helpful
  16. Quercus
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    Quercus avatar
    3467 posts
    22 March 2018 in reply to Flashx

    Hi Rexy and Flash and anyone else reading,

    Yep another woman with a higher drive than her spouse here. It sucks to be rejected. Truly is a giant kick in the guts as a woman (although I'm sure blokes feel just as rubbish too).

    I went about the problem a different way. By accepting I have needs.

    Sometimes that means if he's sitting on the couch tuning out I'll strip off where he can see and go take care of myself. Loudly. He usually turns off the tv. And those days he doesn't I just accept his comment "have fun?" with a cheerful "yep too bad you missed out".

    I don't ask or nag for sex. I aim to flirt and make him curious. Doesn't always work but I try.

    Purposefully shaking things up helped too. I remember him thinking I had a shopping list and then going red when he realised it was a list of fantasties. Yes or no husband of mine?

    Basically what I'm getting at is I've given up feeling shy or ashamed. He's my husband. I don't want sex with anyone else. I want him. And he knows that sex and intimacy for me are a dealbreaker. I don't care how we go about being intimate.

    But if we're in the same house and he's acting like a housemate then something has to change. Constant rejection isn't fair or sustainable in a marriage/relationship in my mind.

    Good on you for speaking up.

    1 person found this helpful
  17. Kim1988
    Kim1988 avatar
    10 posts
    22 March 2018

    Completely understand what you are going through in terms of your boyfriend not initiating. One does feel maybe they aren’t attracted to me in that way or my mind wandered to the worst case scenario that he was getting it elsewhere. I had the same issue with my boyfriend until a little while ago. We’re about the same age as you guys. I’m 30 and he’s 34. We have been together for almost a year now. Until about a month ago we were living in different cities. Him in Melbourne and me in Sydney. We live together now. He never initiated things with me in the sexual aspect. Eventually I felt that our relationship was kind of in a rut until one of us brought it up. I took the initiative and I asked him about it and he was honest and said he was waiting until we were in a more stable situation so it had nothing to do with him not being attracted to me or anything like that.

    I think you just have to lay all the cards on the table and tell him how you’re feeling, which it sounds like you have done, but maybe he feels awkward to discuss it? Maybe instead of discussing it in a way that shifts the blame onto him maybe introduce the discussion in a way of asking him if there’s anything you can work on together as a couple? That way if he has any concerns he can express them to you as well. At the end of the day you guys need to feel like you can talk about sex with each other. If you can’t talk about it with your partner who can you talk about it with?

    1 person found this helpful
  18. Sarah1/1/13
    Sarah1/1/13 avatar
    1 posts
    20 April 2018 in reply to Phnx2405
    this struck a cord with me and was quite helpful in with stilling hope :)
  19. wilga
    wilga avatar
    1 posts
    5 May 2018
    My boyfriend and I of 5 years own a business together, have a debt together, work all day together, live together. Our house is tiny, he doesn't have a 'man area'. We are newly married. The relationship is everything and more I could ever want from a husband and best friend. He is quite independent, I definitely 'need' him. So while sometimes he needs space I need him. I am slowly learning how and when to give him space! However, I am still trying to come to terms with our difference in sexual desires. The first 18 months of our relationship we couldn't keep our hands off each other, however, since starting our business together and spending all day together the flame is suffocating. While I feel I could have him anywhere anytime all day everyday, he can go for 6 or 8 weeks without any 'need' at all. He is definitely not cheating on me (reassurance for some of you who are concerned about that) and I know he loves me more then anything else and I am the most important thing to him. But it still hurts to have constant rejection. I felt like there was something wrong with me/ what I was doing sexually. I accidently came across porn on his phone (we use each others phones for work all the time) and it felt like I had my insides ripped out. I have tried to have conversations with him which end in me in tears and him consoling me. I have tried to make light of the situation by using sexual innuendos. He tells me to stop being gross. I have tried to spice things up by buying toys, when the parcel arrived I gave it to him he opened it and left it on the bench for a month until I packed it for a trip away. We played with a couple of things when we were drunk but he hasn't initiated them since. A while ago I decided to stop trying to initiate as I was sick of being pushed away, we weren't intimate for 10 weeks. He is really keen to have babies, I have slowly come around to the idea and am now as keen as he has been, I am actually really excited. I thought this might spice things up again but alas he thinks we should just carry on as normal and let it happen, not actively initiate it. Some nights I lie in bed just hoping he will touch me and when he does my body reacts very quickly, as soon as he realises he rolls over the other way. It is a terrible feeling. I know he is unhappy about it too but I don't know where to go from here to reignite the passion. It is becoming an elephant in the room.
  20. SparklyUnicorn
    SparklyUnicorn avatar
    2 posts
    11 June 2018

    Hello again :)

    I posted here last November with the same issues (I'm 25, he's 24, almost 9 years together now). I said that I will update with any news in case it might help 'blue_belle' or someone else; and I am posting because I have some progress (maybe not great but it's something). I spoke to the man after my last post, when I was exhausted from trying all avenues except counselling (simply because I'm poor), and I have tried to be so open and a good listener; to make him feel safe in what he tells me and that I won't get upset or angry. It took him years to tell me because he didn't want to hurt my feelings, but apparently the reason he did not want sex any more was mostly because he became sick of it or bored of it after moving in together. He compared it (nicely) to him eating so much of one fruit that he became sick of it. Now, I know for certain that he loves me and he assures me that he's still attracted to me and does not want anyone else. Apparently he just doesn't feel like sex any more. This is of course as well as some standards such as being too tired after work etc, but that was the biggest reason. After he came out to me I tried to do my part, to not pressure him and to just make things fun and care free (this is one reason contributing to why he was wanting it less apparently), and this worked for a while! Things were great again for a few months, and now he feels (well I hope) that he can be more open to me. But sadly, the last 2 months have gone back to the usual. So this isn't a happy ending, but I wanted to fill in my update in case it can be helpful to someone else.

    P.s. I like your ideas 'Quercus' in trying something completely different, so thanks for the tip :)

    1 person found this helpful
  21. Bellabird
    Bellabird avatar
    1 posts
    20 August 2018

    Hi everyone :)

    I came across this forum so late. I am in a similar situation and just thought maybe what I’ve learnt can help.

    I am currently engaged to my boyfriend of 2years plus. We are 34, healthy and working professionals.

    About 6 months into our relationship he stopped wanting to have sex. After that we were averaging once every month maybe. It didn’t feel right. We had a good conversation about it and my boyfriend looked into it deeper and he realized he had PIED (porn induced erection dis function). It took a lot for him to come to terms with this. There is now a large body of research and studies that show what high speed internet and the never-ending novelty of porn does to the brain. Basically real sex with a partner is no longer stimulating and he would rather get “in the mood” with porn.

    A couple of good books that talk about this are “Your brain on porn” and “The brain that changes itself”. There are also some online research papers that are helpful if you’re interested.

    I found that understanding what was happening really helped. It allowed me to see that it wasn’t personal and that it’s quite a wide spread problem for younger couples today.

    Having said that, it’s still hard some days. I miss the connection.

    My boyfriend has quit porn and masturbating. Things are getting much better, he still relapses sometimes but he’s only human. This has really tested our relationship and our commitment. I’ve had to learn to be more understanding and forgiving. At the same time, the amount of effort he has put into kicking the porn addiction makes me realize how much he loves me.

    Everyone’s situation is different. I just hope my experience may help in some cases. Lots of love!!

    1 person found this helpful
  22. Fetherdfriendz1980
    Fetherdfriendz1980 avatar
    1 posts
    20 May 2019 in reply to SparklyUnicorn
    Hello All, i am truly disturbed and saddened by how many people have this problem too! I am 38 years old and have dated my share of men over the years but my current relationship going on 3 years now is the most unsexual one i have ever been in. My boyfriend constantly tells me that he loves and that im beautiful but sleep with me is like pulling teeth. He acts like its a chore and only concedes when i threaten to leave him. He makes me feel ugly and worthless. He is verbally abusive and controlling. He is also bi polar and stopped taking his meds. He says sex is "unproductive "
    1 person found this helpful
  23. RisingFromMyAshes
    RisingFromMyAshes avatar
    3 posts
    21 May 2019 in reply to Fetherdfriendz1980

    You are not alone love. I am married, I have a kid aged 3 as well.

    Hubby would rather use his hand , no affection towards me at all.

    When I pull him he just pushes me away. I have stopped asking too. I feel broken and unworthy yes.

    Even I dont know what the solution is, I wish i knew

  24. RisingFromMyAshes
    RisingFromMyAshes avatar
    3 posts
    21 May 2019 in reply to Golden Brown
    In the exact same spot. I feel so bad. So rejected.
  25. ruthiebell
    ruthiebell avatar
    4 posts
    4 September 2019 in reply to RisingFromMyAshes
    I am in same situation. It is horrible. My boyfriend of 2.5 years will no engage sexually at all. Will not barely kiss me. We have a wonderful relationship aside from this which sounds bizarre. When we first met, he was all over me. It then stopped. He told me it was because he likes to take things slowly if he really likes a woman to avoid people getting hurt. Made good sense. He then told me that it was because he had been very hurt by a woman who he had let into his life and he found it easier to have sex with people he was not emotionally connected to. That was over two years ago. He has on occasion become aroused but we have only ever engaged sexually about four times in 2.5 years. We have had intercourse once. I did find out that very very early on in or relationship he had sex with a woman one night that he had been seeing casually before we met. I was understandably furious. We broke up for a while last year and he told me that he had met a woman and had sex. He did not want to stay with her as he said 'I did not want to have sex with someone I had no emotional connection to and I realised that I love you'. He also admitted to the hope of meeting someone when away on work conferences. He states that this never happened, but who knows. He really does not engage in conversation about it. I try to talk about it but it is more me talking. He says that he doesn't feel any passion towards me. He is a great boyfriend aside from this. We are very intimate in other ways physically and have a stack of fun together. He is now up to his second counsellor. It is the most horrible thing ever. It is like he really doesn't care what this means for me. I am 55 and he is 44. I feel like crap and it is creating the most horrible anxiety where I often cannot sleep. Love this man dearly. I guess this speaks to my own dysfunction. Sad situation.
  26. Quercus
    Champion Alumni
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    3467 posts
    6 September 2019 in reply to ruthiebell

    Hi Ruthiebell and welcome to the forums,

    I'm in absolute awe of you right now. It isn't easy to give posting a go let alone share something that clearly causes you a lot of pain and anxiety. But I'm glad that you spoke about it.

    I have sat and thought for a while about your post. Tried over and over to understand how you are able to be so patient and accepting and figure you're a heck of a lot stronger than I am because I just couldn't accept this.

    The part where you mentioned your boyfriend saying he loves you yet feels no passion towards you was so upsetting just to read.

    One thing that I wondered (and it is absolutely ok to say I've overstepped or just ignore me) is whether he would accept you seeking sex and passion elsewhere if it is something he is unable to give. The idea makes me uncomfortable but you mentioned you love him and I suppose I wondered if you had asked him ways to work around his limitations because your needs matter too?

    Sorry in advance if that is inappropriate or rude to ask about.


  27. ruthiebell
    ruthiebell avatar
    4 posts
    6 October 2019 in reply to Quercus

    Hi Nat,

    Thank you for your reply and your empathic and caring response.

    You have not overstepped the mark at all. I have thought about your suggestion but I don’t want to do that. It would not feel right for me. He will not engage in conversation. He has told me that he has stopped seeing his counsel or and that he was feeling ‘pressured and harrassed’. This is in my view not what I have done as I have only expressed how it feels for me and what I would like to have happen (in terms of communication and attempts together(r to sort the situation). It is hard.

    1 person found this helpful
  28. Quercus
    Champion Alumni
    • Community champion volunteers who are not currently active on the forums.
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    Quercus avatar
    3467 posts
    11 October 2019 in reply to ruthiebell

    Hi Ruthiebell and thank you for returning to post again. I'm relieved that my post wasn't upsetting.

    Just like last time I've sat and thought about your post and how to reply. You said your situation is hard and that feels like an understatement to me. I wish I knew how to help.

    It was really lovely to read that you considered the idea and then decided it wasn't right for you. I agree totally that whatever you decide to do needs to feel comfortable for you.

    Do you think it might be helpful for you to see a professional for counselling? Your partner doesn't sound very willing to seek help but that doesn't mean it wont help you to have someone to reach out to for extra support.

    I suppose the question that keeps coming to mind is... Do you think that if the relationship stays as it is that you can accept this? Your needs matter too.

    Whatever happens the forums are here for you to talk whenever you need to.


  29. ruthiebell
    ruthiebell avatar
    4 posts
    15 November 2019 in reply to Quercus

    Hi Nat,

    Thank you for your response. Yes, my needs matter. I have sought out a counsellor who specials in sex therapy. My partner has asked to come with me which is great. Hopefully a way forward. x

    1 person found this helpful
  30. Quercus
    Champion Alumni
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    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Quercus avatar
    3467 posts
    16 November 2019 in reply to ruthiebell

    Hello again Ruthiebell,

    That is fantastic news! Thank you for sharing your update. Considering in previous posts it had sounded like your partner wasn't open to change it is so great to hear that he asked to come with you.

    That is a huge step forward even if it may not feel like it. I found it so difficult even to get my husband to come to my psychiatrist with me (and that was to get his views to help with my diagnosis not about sex). So I'm quietly hopeful for you both.

    If you want to share how it goes I'm sure others on this thread who have had similar issues (and me too) would appreciate hearing how you are doing.

    wishing you luck and hopefully some positive changes!


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