how to fix a sexless marriage

How to Fix a Sexless Marriage

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People make light of sexless marriages. In fact, it’s not uncommon for people to joke about it during, or soon after, weddings. “Congratulations! You’ll never have sex again!” – this is not an uncommon wisecrack for newlyweds to hear. But honestly, a sexless marriage is no joke. It could mean your marriage is in jeopardy if you don’t do something about it soon enough. If you want to know how to fix a sexless marriage, please read on.

What does it mean if we have sexless marriage?

If you are in a sexless marriage, it means one thing: there’s a larger underlying problem. A lack of intimacy is merely a symptom of a deeper issue….or a combination of a few problems.

If you’re in a sexless marriage, but would like to change it, it’s important to understand this concept: it’s probably not because you’re not interested in having sex. Some people think that you might just “forget” about sex.

This is generally untrue. Believe me, if you haven’t had sex with your spouse in over a month (or more), I guarantee both of you have noticed.

How did we get to be in a sexless marriage?

To fix a sexless marriage, you’ve got to understand how you got there to begin with. There are conceivably a million reasons why you might have a sexless marriage. So, by no means is this an exhaustive list. But – in order to know how to fix a sexless marriage, you have to know what’s causing it.

It’s very possible that if you’re lacking intimacy in your marriage, that you may be affected by several of these on the list. Whatever you do, if you start to feel overwhelmed, take a deep breath and no that most situations are fixable.

No Time

This is the “go-to” excuse for all of us. We just don’t have time for sex. A week goes by, no big deal. A month goes by, and it’s a bigger deal, but we still don’t have time (maybe things will get less busy soon). And then a few more months go by and we’re starting to feel disconnected, lonely, and unloved.

WOW that escalated quickly! But I’m not exaggerating. People don’t cause sexless marriages intentionally – no one does this on purpose. It just develops naturally over time when we aren’t paying enough attention to maintaining the physical connection between spouses.

Unsatisfying sex

I’m going to guess that this one affects the ladies more than the gentlemen. When sex is good, it’s good. But when sex is bad?….it can be really bad. And it’s not very enticing to go into a romp knowing it’s going to be bad. (Sorry, guys).

If unsatisfying sex is what’s causing your sexless marriage, know that you’re not alone. A lot of people who aren’t enjoying the sex simply stop having sex. For many, no sex is better than bad sex.

Health issues

Sometimes health issues cause sexless marriages. It could be a physical health issue that makes sex mechanically difficult. Or it could be hormonal, making the desire for sex very low and unappealing.

It could even be a mental health issue that causes the sexless marriage. When your spouse is affected by depression, anxiety, or some other mental health condition, you can bet that sex is not top of mind. Whatever the case may be, health issues are a very real cause of a sexless marriage.

Unresolved Conflicts

If you’ve been fighting a lot with your spouse, the inclination to have sex together pretty much goes down the drain. Think about it – if you and your spouse have been having blow out after blow out, you’re probably not really “in the mood”. Am I right?

Unresolved conflicts are a major cause of sexless marriages. And even if you aren’t fighting a lot, if you have resentment that’s built up from past issues, it’s not likely that you’re feeling very frisky.

Emotional Estrangement

This one really piggy-backs off of the last one. Unresolved conflicts are what leads to emotional estrangement. But hold on – what do we mean by “emotional estrangement”? We’ll tell you.

It’s that feeling like you’ve become nothing more than roommates with your spouse. Even though you’re living in the same house with this person, you feel incredibly lonely, and like you don’t even know them any more.

Well at this point, sex is unlikely. Do you walk up to strangers propositioning sex? No, you don’t – because most of us seek some kind of emotional connection from sex (yes, even men too). If you and your spouse are emotionally out-of-sync, that could be what’s causing your sexless marriage.

Is my marriage over if we’re not having sex?

You might wonder, “is my marriage over if we aren’t having sex?” Maybe, or maybe not. (Not a very helpful answer, I know – but there’s more, so just keep reading).

If you’re not having sex in your marriage, it could be a serious problem. And the longer it goes on, the bigger the problem is. If you don’t address a sexless marriage at some point, it may lead to loneliness, alienation, resentment, and beyond. Over time, these things can break down a marriage and make it hard to recover.

But if you catch the problem early enough, and really address it head on, it’s very possible to fix a sexless marriage. In all likelihood, it will take some time to bring back the spark. But with dedication to the cause, you can absolutely spice things up again. (And it should be fun, too!)

How to fix a sexless marriage

Address it

As we often say at Happy Marriage Makers, communication is key to fixing any marriage problem. In fact, it’s always the first step.

To fix a sexless marriage, you have to speak up. Depending on the length of time since you last had relations, it may seem a little awkward. However, addressing the problem head on is a must for fixing this issue.

As I mentioned earlier, I can guarantee both of you have noticed the lack of sex. Problem is, nobody’s said anything about it. And as long as that goes on, nothing will change.

It may be the elephant in the room. But once you address the awkward subject of your sex life with your spouse, the awkwardness is likely to dwindle once the conversation gets going. It’s worth a little awkwardness for the end result.

Prioritize it

Just like you, I’ve been so busy to the point of not having time for my spouse. The thing about “being busy” is that you prioritize either what is most important to you, or what you believe that you have to do.

Trust me, I understand why it seems important to make sure all of your responsibilities are done all the time. But why don’t we view our spouse as a responsibility? You (both) are responsible to form a connection with your spouse. Try prioritization your sex life over household chores, or leaving work on time for once so you can bring some intimacy back in your marriage.

Get to the root of the problem

So often, the reason you’re not having sex is not related to sex at all. There is a tendency in relationship to withhold sex from your partner when your needs are not being met in other areas of your relationship. If your needs are physical, and your spouse’s are not, this can present a challenge. Both of your needs are not being met.

One of you has to go first. It does not matter which who. Be first. Give your spouse what they need and they will give you what you need in return. But you have to make sure to clearly communicate what your needs are. In order to do that, you need to do a little soul-searching. Find out what your needs are, communicate them, and give your spouse what they need.

Consult a health professional

If sex is painful for you emotionally or physically, I would recommend seeing a health professional. Who you see is dependent on what your issue is. If it is more physically based you could look into seeing a sex therapist. If you have emotional or mental block about sex, see someone to help you figure out why.

Don’t be a selfish lover

If you want to know how to solve this issue of bad sex, this is a good starting off point. This falls on men for the most part (sorry guys, biology can be tough). That’s not to say that ladies can’t do things to give their man extra pleasure. They can and should for a healthy sex life.

But when men are selfish lovers, there is no reason for a women to really want to have sex. The guys still gets off, she doesn’t. So fellas, put extra time into making sure your wife is satisfied, and she’ll want to have sex with you more (and she’ll probably do things you like a bit more too).

Learn to communicate during sex

Continuing with solving the issue of bad sex, the next step is to learn how to communicate during the act of sex. It really comes down to two things: don’t be shy about it and don’t take things personally. 

You have to realize that sex is not Hollywood magic. It takes work to be good at it, and it takes communicating during the act to understand each other’s preferences. You are the only person you can physically feel your nerve endings. So if something isn’t doing it for you, say something. It’s the only way your partner will adjust their actions to pleasure you. 

And if your partner tells you to do something different, DO NOT take it personal. It is literally impossible to know what they are feeling physically. Their is no shame whatsoever in not doing it quite how they like it. Also, it varies from day to day and you’re not a psychic. Give yourself a break, and take your partners suggestions for what they are.

Reconnect emotionally

We talked about how unresolved conflicts can lead to emotional estrangement, which leads to a lack of intimacy. Fulfilling each other’s needs is a pivotal step in truly reconnecting. But past that, continue to learn about each other and spend quality time with each other.

When you’re able to put all of these together is when you begin to feel emotionally reconnected. This will affect your sex life positively. If your sex life is doing well, this will help you reconnect with each other in other aspects of your life. And so on and so forth. Reconnecting is a cycle between physical intimacy and the dynamic of your relationship. Both aspects compliment and work together to help you stay connected with each other.

How much sex should we be having?

As you might imagine, there’s no one answer to this question. Every couple is different. We all have different sex drives, and sometimes circumstances affect our sex lives more than we’d like.

However, a recent study has shown that the happiest couples only have sex once a week. Kinda surprising, huh? It’s easy to get this idea that if you aren’t having sex 3-4 times a week, that something’s wrong.

But that couldn’t be further from the truth. Turns out, couples who do the deed only once a week are deeply fulfilled. If you’re looking to fix a sexless marriage, don’t fall victim to the pressure of needing a lot of sex.

What’s most important is that you and your spouse find out what works best for the both of you.

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