Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Really love my wife but... sex and lack thereof!

(155 Posts)
frustratedman Tue 23-Jan-07 20:13:25

OK ladies - really need your help here.

Been with my wife for a decade, married two years ago, two children under 5 and essentially very happy with our lives together. problem... yep, its sex and lack thereof!

My wife has made it absolutely clear that she doesn't like sex, she just doesn't get the urge - she'd absolutely rather go to sleep, or sit on the sofa reading mumsnet (Hello wife!). We were 16 and 17 when we met and things, as with most teenagers, were fantastic. The last 6 years or so have been a sex non-event. I've always felt as though it would surely sort its self out but alas I?ve learnt that if it goes of 'my radar', my wife really doesn't care and doesn't make any kind of effort whatsoever!

I do fully understand how the dynamics change when you have children, also well aware of the monotony of everyday life. I do my best to involve myself and help out where I can.

I'm finding it very hard to accept that zero sex is right. It feels very very wrong to me; I'm a male in my late 20's and have very little sex. It?s MAYBE once or twice a month and always instigated by me. The more time that passes by the more angry I feel and this spill over into other areas of my life were I feel quite lot of resentment about it. My wife and I have spoken about it to death and as a man in my late 20 can't accept a sexless relationship.

It feels quite tragic to me; we love each other very much and are a close family unit. I feel as though (and have explained) that this is like a time bomb that will eventually ruin our marriage. I have been out with my male friends on nights out and been propositioned by women, I desperately don't want to be dishonest to my wife (and don't intend to) but it?s becoming increasingly tempting.

I've always prided myself on being absolutely honest with my wife and have spoken in length and tried many things ? we go round in circles and it?s become a long-term stand off.

I'm really interested to read any comments, ideas, and suggestions on what can be done to sort this out once and for all.


Wordsmith Tue 23-Jan-07 20:22:55

From a quantity point of view twice a month with 2 under fives doesn't sound too bad. But it doesn't solve your problem. All Ican say is from a woman in your wife's position (although a lot older, unfortunately), clearing the decks mentally and physically for initmacy - finding a space in your mind and you life when you can stop worrying about kids/work/the ironing is difficult and sometimes it's just easier to flake out in front of the TV. It's also hard to confront and accept that things aren't ideal. Have you tried going away together for the weekend and making time just for you where you don't have to deal with the monotony of everyday domesticity? That could add a spark that you could use to rekindle things when you return to normal life. Just a thought. have to go now - domesticity calls!

hoolagirl Tue 23-Jan-07 20:30:13

Why don't you get a babysitter and go for a night out with your wife on a regular basis?
That way she may be able to get out of harrassed wife and mother mode and relax for a while.
Even if its just for a night at the pictures and back to the house for a few glasses of wine without the kids.
I find it hard to get back to feeling 'sexy' and i've only got one, but just some time out really helps.

lazyanna Tue 23-Jan-07 20:31:11

I do think that it would be better if you just accepted that we don't have to have sex if we don't want to.

Glassofwine Tue 23-Jan-07 20:34:02

I have felt like you wife does in my previous relationships, up for it in the beginning but once everythings settled down, really not bothered. It all changed when I met someone who made me feel like a goddess in every way - it was a fling (not an affair) but it opened my eyes. Now with my dh we have a totally fantastic sex life - three children 7, 5 & 4 - although when we were up to our ears in nappies there was a definate slow down.

Once again, my dh makes me feel totally adored, never critiscises me or puts me down. I know that I'm not the most gorgeous woman in the world or the most funny or the most intelectual - but he makes me feel like I am and its the biggest turn on in the world.

Women don't want to be nagged or harranged into sex, we want to be loved - you know the saying Men talk to women so they'll have sex with them and women have sex with men so they'll talk to them. - there's some truth in that. A night of talking, listening to music, remembering old time and really really opening up is whats going to get your wife into bed.

By the way - I do understand no one in their 20's should be in a sexless relationship, but try absolutely everything and don't give up or give in to anyone else unless you know you've exhausted every avenue.

shimmy21 Tue 23-Jan-07 20:37:52

Good for you brave and frustratedman. You're talking about the problem and seeking other women's views (are you sure you're not actually female?!)
The bad news is that your amount of sex sounds pretty average for parents of 2 small children and a lot more than some are getting according to many many MN threads on this subject. The question you have to ask yourself is would you be satisfied with sex with your dw that she is just having to keep you happy and that she doesn't really want. If you want real happy sex then it's going to take a lot of imagination and compromise onboth your parts.

In my experience reducing the pressure and guilt when a night of passion doesn't go according to how you had planned is a good start.

ishouldbeironing Tue 23-Jan-07 20:38:32

I agree with other posters your DW needs to be taken out on a date?
Why do men never get this ?
Take her away from the drudgery of domestic life for a few hours and I am sure you will notice a difference or better still an overnight stay - is that possible.
Surprise her dont ask her to arrange babysitter or book reataurant etc arrange EVERY LAST DETAIL.
I am sure that she will be dead chuffed that you have made this effort for her and .........who knows!!!!!!!!!

SturdyAngel Tue 23-Jan-07 20:43:10

I think you've had some good suggestions here.

Try to have a regular night out on your own. Make your wife feel like a woman again- not just a mother/cook/cleaner etc. Enjoy each others comapany. Don't let these nights out be a means to an end- don't expect sex at the end of the evening. Just talk, laugh and enjoy each other. The physical stuff will follow, given time.

Try not to let your need for sex turn every cuddle/kiss into something else. My DH is terrible for this- every time I give him a cuddle he starts ripping my clothes off! Sometimes we just need a hug and to feel wanted!

youngmumoftwo Tue 23-Jan-07 20:43:34

I knew I could track you down in here, "frustrated man", wasnt too hard to find you. See how the other ladies agree? And it is a bit more than 2 a month. But I agree with the suggestions that I need to be taken out on a date!! And less pressure, and no moods all day would be good
See you upstairs

luckylady74 Tue 23-Jan-07 20:44:20

just a thought - there are ( i think) sometimes health reasons for lack of libido.
on the other hand ifind talking doesn't work that well and rather getting a babysitter and getting a bit tipsy does!
if i remember rightly mariella frostrup has written about this sort of issue in her relationship colum in the saturday guardian which you could search for on the website.
ther's even relate - if you are tempted to be unfaithful perhaps it's sreious enough for counseling?

SturdyAngel Tue 23-Jan-07 20:44:52


LaDiDaDi Tue 23-Jan-07 20:45:01

Do you try to have intamcy with your wife that isn't, in either of your minds, relating to wanting sex?

Do you ever sit next to each other and cuddle up?
Hold her hand when you are out?
Hug and kiss her each time you part from each other, eg going to work and coming home?

Little steps like these on a regular basis could make your wife appreciate physical contact more. If she feels loved and desired for herself, not just because she might provide sex, then she may start to feel like it again.

hoolagirl Tue 23-Jan-07 20:46:39

Well busted haha!
Take the lady out for a knee's up!

pianist Tue 23-Jan-07 20:47:23

This is all about your wants and not hers. Sorry to think of something negative - but it could be that she doesn't find you as attractive as you used to be? Do you still make an effort? Are you fit? Do you make sure you've been in the shower before you suggest sex? etc etc!!

youngmumoftwo Tue 23-Jan-07 20:47:41

I am on a waiting list to talk to a counsellor, and I have had blood tests to make sure its not hormonal.
To be honest, its really that I cant be bothered! I love my "frustrated man", and know that sex to him is me showing that I love him, but I think all the stuff during the day is showing that I love him! Kissing and cuddling without the pressure is showing that I love him.

preggerspoppet Tue 23-Jan-07 20:47:50

well done.. (might be showing dh this thread!)

someone once said that when you have kids, foreplay starts with clearing your breakfast dishes in the morning and finishes with running your dw a bath and pouring her a glass of wine while you do a quick tidy round at bedtime....

that works for me, but a few subtle compliments thrown in (throughout the day, not jus at crunch time) and I'm putty in his hands!

youngmumoftwo Tue 23-Jan-07 20:48:15

yeah lets get pissed!!

nappyaddict Tue 23-Jan-07 20:50:50

have you thought about counselling? you could go together or separately if wife was more comfortable with that. there could be an underlying reason to why she is like this. although tbh once or twice a month isn't that bad.

hoolagirl Tue 23-Jan-07 20:50:59

God there is nothing wrong with you, you've got 2 young kids, no wonder you just want to sleep!
Get your man to take you for a good night out!

Rhubarb Tue 23-Jan-07 20:51:00

I feel like this every now and then, sex just feels like such a chore at times. I could easily make do with a kiss and a cuddle.

I think you need to build it up. Men's problem is that they expect you to be turned on in five minutes. Whereas we like to be taken out, to be told that we look fantastic and that we feel special etc. Making a woman feel special and loved is the key to turning her on.

You need to pay attention to all her needs as everyone has said. And don't force the issue of sex, if it doesn't happen then it doesn't happen. It's no big deal. It might happen next time!

suzycreamcheese Tue 23-Jan-07 20:52:49

maybe the others are right about quantity..but at least make it quality..
take her in the hall..surprise her and be surprised!
there is something about feeling that you HAVE to initiate something.. but a few memorable times and she'll be up for creates energy ime..
step to it young man..

stitch Tue 23-Jan-07 20:52:53

this could have been written by me. except its dh who thnks zero sex is the way to go.

Rhubarb Tue 23-Jan-07 20:54:59

Funny that stitch, when I want sex my dh will go through one of his abstinence periods, and then when I give up and decide I don't want bloody sex anyway, he suddenly decides he wants it!

We are totally out of synch!

nappyaddict Tue 23-Jan-07 20:55:55

oh sorry just read the rest of the thread.

i agree you need to surprise dw. take her out on regular nights out, and even away for the weekend once in a while.

show her that you love her by giving kisses and cuddles and not always wanting sex.

compliment her, offer to do the housework while she puts her feet up etc

you just never know she might find you utterly irresistable after all that ..

Caligula Tue 23-Jan-07 20:57:11

Make sure sex is a pleasure not a chore

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now