#MenAskLikely: Is It Bad That I Want Sex Less Than My Partner?
“My girlfriend has no problem getting it on but I’m not always in the mood. Is it bad that my sex drive isn’t as strong as hers?” – Simon
No one person is the same as the other, which is why when we find someone with similar interests, we tend to keep them in our circle. Imagine you’re the pink circle and your partner is the blue circle, where you intersect, you are a gorgeous purple shade but at the same time, where you don’t intersect – you are pink and he/she is blue. You are your own individuals. So while both of you combined results in something beautiful, there are other aspects of your own personalities to take into consideration.
With that being said, there are multiple reasons why you and your partner are not matching up when it comes to sex drive – stress, ageing, medication, existing physical and mental health conditions and more. Our libidos are not set in stone, it’s not based on a shared timer and it’s not something that you can turn on and off with the flip of a switch. It is also not gender-based, so despite the way the movies and TV has depicted men as having more sexual discrepancies than women, it’s actually more or less the same. Both men and women are just as likely to wrestle with mismatching libidos when they are in relationships. It doesn’t make you weird or a freak if you’re not as into sex as your partner is and it definitely is not something to break up over.
Here’s how to deal with having a lower libido than your partner and even, how to compromise if you find yourself wanting to do it more than your partner. Let’s start with what your options are should you be dealing with a lower libido –
Talk it out.
That’s right – we’re going to dive headfirst. Rather than letting yourself worry and stress (which would just kill your sex drive even further) about your sex life, talk it out with your partner. It takes two hands to clap, two to tango and (most of the time) two under the sheets. So, as challenging and uncomfortable as it may seem, choose a good time (when you and your partner are calm and ready, like in the middle of the day) and place (like the living room) to sit down and talk about what’s happening in your sex life. If you’re both honest about your needs and concerns, you’ll have a much clearer picture of each other’s expectations and thus, will be able to reach a compromise that will suit you both. If you don’t talk about it, you’ll both not know what the other party wants, creating tension (of the non-sexual kind) that you really don’t need in a relationship. Make sure that it’s clear that you both are working towards a solution together rather than simply creating a problem by choosing your words carefully. Use sentences like “I feel” rather than accusatory language like “You make me feel”.
If talking things out and schedule is too much, start small. Don’t pressure yourself into thinking that you have to be doing what your partner wants. Let your partner know that you’re making the effort to be more intimate and ask that they give you the time. Start with being playful with your partner – over time, we lose the initial flirtations and heart-fluttering fun we would have had in the first few moments of dating. Show them you appreciate them. Thank them for their help and support, praise them and listen to them. A good partner would naturally reciprocate the care and it will bring you both closer together both emotionally and eventually, physically too.
So watch a movie in bed, buy some sexy sleepwear and just enjoy each others company.
Just do it.
Try scheduling sex. As weird as that sounds, it can be an effective means to a climatic end. But, of course, make sure you follow through. Scheduling sexy time can help turn you on as you prepare for it. It will help you refocus your effort to being more intimate while allowing yourself the space you need and your partner the satisfaction he/she wants.
And if you’re the partner with the stronger sex drive…
Remember that it’s not always about you.
For one, it’s easy to feel rejected, bruised and undesirable when your partner does not seem as into you as you are with them. But, in the same way you are feeling these heavy emotions, they are likely to feel just as heavy with guilt, pressure and anxiety. Don’t put pressure on your partner to conform to your needs and avoid confrontational situations where things like “you never want to have sex with me anymore” or “you don’t want me” can make your partner feel like they “owe” you sex. Even thinking of them feeling that way is a turn-off, right? Of course, it can be frustrating, but it is important to remind yourself that you are not the cause. Everyone is wired differently and just because your partner doesn’t want to get it on as much as you do, does not mean it is a reflection of how attractive or bad you are in the bedroom. Instead, focus on creating a safe and calm environment. It’s difficult to start feeling sexy if you’re in a high-pressure, high anxiety situation.
Keep your hands to yourself
Sex with a partner isn’t the only way to satisfy your desires. Masturbation will allow you to blow off some steam and who knows, if your partner is okay with it as well, it can be something to help you both get back on track. This way, you can lift some of the pressure off your partner. Be honest with them, though. You don’t want to be sneaking around behind their back and lookin’ like you’re doing something you aren’t.
Try something new.
The more you push your partner, the further they will pull away from you. What happens when they are so far away that you can’t get them back? Let’s not even go there. Instead, try something new – back off. Don’t talk about or try to start anything sensual. Be patient and give them the time to recharge; they may just come back to you even more amorous than they were before. This does not mean that you cut them off, of course. Focus on the other, non-physical aspects of the relationship and focus on yourself. Connect with them on an emotional level and reconnect with yourself as well. Go out with friends, start that book you’ve had stashed on your shelf for months, heck, join a photography club. When you focus on your emotional health, you will find yourself growing and maturing – something that may seem more attractive to your partner than you think.
At the end of the day, it boils down to the fact that you and your partner are two different people with different desires. Creating a safe and nurturing space within your relationship will mean the difference between a healthy relationship and a toxic one. In that space, allow yourself and your partner to check in both emotionally and sexually when it feels right – without pressure. When there is mutual respect and love between a couple, not having physical sparks isn’t so bad. Your passion and love can be channelled in different, healthy ways that suite both of you. And even if it doesn’t work you, at least you both tried your best.