When sexual chemistry starts to wane in a relationship, it can be confusing. When it starts to disappear, it can be devastating. Both parties may feel like they’re doing something wrong, or are somehow broken. They may fear the end of the relationship is on the horizon, and that to fix a sexless marriage is out of reach or a symptom for a larger problem.
While every relationship has its ups and downs, sex can be particularly hard to discuss. Without a fix, a sexless relationship can become the elephant in the room that everyone is pretending isn’t there.
Fix for a Sexless Relationship
To fix a sexlessness relationship, you must be able to communicate honestly and compassionately about the possible sources and solutions. Read on for our top tips for helping deal with a sexless relationship. For starters, If you want to fix a sexless marriage, you’re going to have to do some homework:
Do Your Homework
- Investigate the details of the issue. How long has this been going on? Are there any “inciting incidents” that may be the source of the problem? For instance, if you have a new baby, that’s a huge event, with accompanying bodily, hormonal, and lifestyle changes. These changes often disrupt a couple’s sex life. If there is no obvious “thing” that happened, try to figure out when you first noticed the issue. Were there other clues that may indicate what happened?
- Understand the nature of your relationship. It may be possible that nothing really changed in your relationship. Some couples just aren’t that motivated by sex. If you never had a very sexual relationship, are you suddenly wanting more sex? Was your relationship was founded on things other than sex, say childrearing or sharing a business, or just emotional connection? You may be unconsciously demanding more than the original agreement by trying to “fix” your sexless relationship. There’s nothing wrong if this is the case, but it may help you figure out how to appropriately address the issue with your partner.
- Figure out what you want. Get specific. “More sex,” is too vague. Do you want sex once a week? More variety or more consistency? Or maybe you’re wanting more intimacy but sex is the only way you think you can get it? Be honest with yourself about what you want. Also consider that a sexless relationship may not be a problem at all. If neither you nor your partner “misses” sex, it’s possible the stress of having a sexless marriage is caused by societal expectations.
- Start talking. A sexless relationship is not a problem you can fix on your own. You must address the issue with your partner in order to address the issue. Start by using Reid’s Difficult Conversation Formula, and approach the issue sensitively. The point is not to assign blame, but open an inquiry into both of your emotional states and attempt to fix the problem together. For help on how to start the conversation, consult a coach.
Get Creative to Fix a Sexless Relationship
- Once you’ve opened the channels of communication in your relationship, you have a much better chance of fixing a sexless relationship. Together, investigate root issues. Common sources can be physical, emotional, or practical. Physical issues can include hormonal shifts, chronic pain, injury, inability to feel sexual pleasure, or decreased libido. Emotional issues can be feelings of stress, lack of trust, shame for desires, or a lack of honest communication. Practical issues may be a lack of privacy in the home or inability to find time to connect and relax. Together, investigate the core issues relevant to the lack of sex. It’s quite likely it’s a mix of a number of different causes together.
- One of the best ways to fix a sexless relationship is to expand your idea of sex. Sex doesn’t have to be penis-in-vagina penetration. It can include oral sex, hand sex, sensation play, sensual massage, mutual masturbation, and more. If you add more things to the menu, you may find both you and your partner are more enthusiastic about integrating sexuality back into your relationship.
- Compromise. If your sexless relationship is caused by mismatched libidos (that is, if one of you wants sex far more than the other), it’s important you come to some sort of compromise. That can look like a lot of different things. Some couples negotiate regular date nights that integrate aspects of sensuality that feel good for both partners, such as massage, mutual masturbation, or just cuddling. Some partners may find compromise very difficult. Others may explore opening up the relationship in controlled and honest ways, such as negotiating certain acts or boundaries for sex outside the relationship.
Kindness is Key
- Be careful not to assign blame to one of you for “ruining” the relationship. Sexuality and intimacy are complex things and are often affected by a number of different factors. Remember your love for one another and keep the health of your relationship centered throughout the conversations.
- Be patient. It’s hard to fix a sexless relationship overnight. It’s better to honor the process. Conversation and building of trust are essential. Both of you need to feel safe expressing your emotions while feeling supported.
- Bring in backup. It’s possible you won’t be able to figure out the solution alone. Many couples seek out therapy to help work through issues of sexless relationship.