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

suzycreamcheese Tue 23-Jan-07 20:58:30

aye aye cap'n caligula will do sir x

Caligula Tue 23-Jan-07 21:01:13

frustratedman Tue 23-Jan-07 21:03:16

Thank you all for the feedback. All is much appreciated:

Wordsmith - Am planning a surprise going away to try and keep things fresh but have to say, I have done this before. Thanks appreciate the feedback.

Hoolagirl - Likewise thank you. We need to get out more and make time for each other away from the home.

Lazyanna - I want her to want to have sex, and that’s the point really. I definitely don't want my wife to 'do it' because she feels as though I’ll get the hump if not. Meaningless sex isn’t what I’m looking for (Let's face it, that kind of sex isn't particularly tricky to achieve)

Glassofwine - You make a good point. I'd be a liar if i said that i make my wife feel like a goddess. However I do make an effort to buy little gifts like flowers and other such from time to time. I often tell her how beautiful she looks and pay genuine compliments.

Shimmy21 - I want my wife to want to have sex with me and really have gone long periods of time of not mentioning it. If it goes of 'my radar' it’s a complete non-event. And no I’m not a woman, I really love my wife and I’m willing to do anything to try and work this out, even surrendering myself to mumsnet for ideas.

ishouldbeironing - I get it, really I do. I've surprised my wife to fantastic night out and to really lovely hotels for a romantic night in the past. I’ve also carried out other similar gestures, agreed us men could always do more!!

I sometimes wonder if we’ve become two individual who just love each other very much and that’s it. What defines us as man and wife if the intimacy has gone?

All comments appreciated and taken on, Thank you!

suzycreamcheese Tue 23-Jan-07 21:03:35

any more orders cap'n,,?

suzycreamcheese Tue 23-Jan-07 21:04:48

frustrated man..
why no name checks for the rest of us
what are you gonna do?

Caligula Tue 23-Jan-07 21:06:05

No, that one pretty much covers all bases, I think.

LOL at blokes coming on here and finding out they've got to treat their DW's as goddesses. We don't want much, do we?

hoolagirl Tue 23-Jan-07 21:06:49

Just remember to act on the advice and not be oh next week we'll go out!
Does make a big difference having a break from the house/kids.
Good luck!

kama Tue 23-Jan-07 21:14:35

Do you ever just have foreplay with your wife? Oral sex, touching, stroking naked, massages (with oil), then sleep? I think a lot of women are scared of enjoying foreplay because they know the man will be expecting sex afterwards, so you both end up with nothing. It is a good way to get back into things, if the woman knows there are absolutly no expectations for actual sex to follow. Regardless of how many months this needs to go on for. But, you need to really really believe that yourself as well, because women can pick up on you saying one thing, but showing your dissapointment when that really is all that happens.

Also, are those one or two times a month simply her giving in to keep you satisfied for a while longer? You should never ever have sex unless both partners want it, regardless of who initiates. If a woman has sex only to please a man, the next time sex comes up that is all she remembers from the last time. The minute sex becomes something 'you have to do' it stops being enjoyabel & any natural urges will automatically dissapear. I think, in the long term, waiting for her to initiate will provide you with a lot more sex.

(sorry for the hastily written post, hope it makes sense)

suzycreamcheese Tue 23-Jan-07 21:21:23

goddess status as prerequisite, defo..caligula!

its a given imo ...

kama Tue 23-Jan-07 21:23:08

I never feel like a goddess

VeniVidiVickiQV Tue 23-Jan-07 21:42:58

I sometimes think that its a bit of a vicious circle, a lacking sex drive. A bit like depression. When something knocks you sideways, and you feel low, your brain stops producing as much seratonin, you feel worse, your produces less seratonin and so on and so on.

I think the less you feel like having sex, the less likely you are to have sex. The less you have sex, the less you feel like having sex. So it goes on.

I think, as much as you need to "treat your wife like a godess", your wife needs to find something to nudge her sex drive. Maybe erotic novels (NOT porn) might be a good start?

I dont think its 'right' that a woman should have no drive at all. I think she is missing out, tbh. Sex can be fun, pleasurable, loving, intimate, if not frequent. Sounds like you love your wife very much.

Caligula Tue 23-Jan-07 21:45:23

Agree VVV it's a bit like exercise in that respect. Such an effort if you don't do it that often, but a pleasurable part of your life if you do it regularly.

VeniVidiVickiQV Tue 23-Jan-07 21:46:45

Much better analogy Caligula!

Exercise gives you a buzz too, doesnt it?

Caligula Tue 23-Jan-07 21:48:01

Yes and if you do it several times a week and then you don't do it for four days or whatever, you start missing it and feeling fractious and feeling it's quite urgent that you do it again.

(Am talking about exercise, natch )

VeniVidiVickiQV Tue 23-Jan-07 21:50:29

madamez Tue 23-Jan-07 22:02:45

Just putting in from a different point of vie and this is only a suggestion for folk to consider: If one party in a relationship really isn't interested in having sex yet there is goodwill, affection, shared lives and all that, why is it such a ridiculously big deal for the one who does have a sex drive to go and get some no-strings fun elsewhere? Doing without sex when you want sex will, in the long run, make you miserable; having sex becuase your partner wants it when you're really not interested will make you miserable...

I really am genuinely bemused at people who don't want to have sex with their partners, yet won't accept their partners having sex with someone else. It just seems such a miserable way to live.

Caligula Tue 23-Jan-07 22:09:54

ooh you'll cause a row now madamez, you will

suzycreamcheese Tue 23-Jan-07 22:16:08

caligula..i am with you ... agree...
and the saucier it is, the sooner you want it again..

Caligula Tue 23-Jan-07 22:16:44

Thinking about it, that sounds reasonable, but it's not because sex is so primal and unpredictable, that's why almost every society that has ever existed has invented taboos around it to try and regulate it. The reason the other party wouldn't be happy, is because sex as recreation might turn into love, emotional bonding with someone else etc. Also because when you get married, you do promise to restrict sex to only your partner, it's part of the deal. Most people in that situation don't want to have sex with any random person, they want to have it with the person they love. Having no strings fun with someone else is a recipe for decoupling in most cases. And most people don't want to de-couple with their original partner, they want to make their relationship better, not worse.

But agree, it's a miserable scenario either to do without sex when you want it, or to have it out of duty when you don't want it.

suzycreamcheese Tue 23-Jan-07 22:17:40

the only problem there is that they may want sex with their and affection are all part of sex..and if you are in it together then it is

HappyDaddy Tue 23-Jan-07 22:18:21

Sex is so meaningless, eh madamez? I can't believe so few will agree with you. [rolls eyes]

Jimjams2 Tue 23-Jan-07 22:22:18

I remember a friend saying to me that when you've been crawled over, kissed, slobbered on and hugged all day long by children, the last thing you feel like at night is further intimacy- you want peace, and space. i can recognise that.

Give her time to herself, give her time to sleep, make yourself a little unavailable. It will be more likely to lead to success that asking for it iyswim.

Mistymoo Tue 23-Jan-07 22:24:34

Have you not just ruined the surprise trip by telling everyone that you are doing it - especially with you DW on MN and on this thread!

Jimjams2 Tue 23-Jan-07 22:26:54

Oh pmsl missed that his wife was on here.

MerryMarigold Tue 23-Jan-07 22:55:11

just read this WITH dh. he says it has been very useful. he admits he hasn't done any of the suggested stuff, like taking out/ weekend away etc. and is therefore 'not getting much'. Personally I like the foreplay suggestions!

lupo Tue 23-Jan-07 23:30:03

can sympathise, am in the same situation but dh is one with the low sex drive..frustrating in more ways than one!

madamez Tue 23-Jan-07 23:41:39

Well, you know, just because people have always restricted sex (or, more accurately, people with power have always done their best to restrict everybody else's sexual activity) doesn't mean that it has to be that way for ever. Lots of things that were done for centuries are not done any more because enough people have found them unproductive/unethical, whether it's slavery or total absence of hygiene.
Appreciate that for some people, monogamy genuinely is important, but given the misery it seems to cause wonder why people can't at least consider mvoing away from it when the situation isn't working.
Given that, after all, quite a lot of people do manage to relate to each other happily without insisitng on sexual esclusivity...

lazyanna Wed 24-Jan-07 00:14:02

Oh, you all drive me mad - sex is just horrid, it's something we do to make men shut up for a while, and eventuallly we all grow up enough to say "let's not do this any more"

mears Wed 24-Jan-07 01:25:40

frustratedman - what you need to do more often is kiss and cuddle your wife and promise her that she does not need to then have sex. I rememebr this stage very well and my DH felt rejected because I didn't want sex. I was too bloody knackered after looking after the children all day. Once he realised I was not rejecting him (after a lot of discussion), he stopped pressurising me. Then we agreed to kiss and cuddle and nothing else. Gradually I would then take the lead which resulted in sex. we now have a really good sex life again but my youngets is 13 yrs old. Be patient

ps twice a month is bloody good going

SturdyAngel Wed 24-Jan-07 07:53:34

Lazyanna. I think thats really sad.

There are plenty of ways to shut my man up for a while- sex isn't one of them. I hope we never get to the point where we decide not to bother any more.

I look forward to going to bed at the end of the day and being with my DH. I look forward to handing the kids over to my mum for a few hours on the weekend then rushing straight home to bed.

Sex is not horrid.

Wordsmith Wed 24-Jan-07 09:41:49

madamez, I don't think that's the answer for frustratedman. he doesn't want sex - he wants sex with his wife. I'm sure your suggestion would work for some but most loving partners don't want meaningless sex, they want sex that means something.

Jimjams2's friends comments about wanting space after being needed all day by kids is spot on. The most romantic and lovely thing DH has done for me recently was buy me a pampering day at a spa, and he stayed at home and looked after the kids.

nogoes Wed 24-Jan-07 09:52:18

How does she feel about herself in terms of appearance since having children? I find it really difficult to feel "sexy" if I am not 95% happy with the way I look.

I have the same conversations with my DH. He always wonders why I'm not interested nor enjoy it anymore. I always tell him to take me away from it all so I can switch off from the kids. He has yet to do this so sex isn't something that happens very often and the ground doesn't shake when it does

trice Wed 24-Jan-07 09:57:09

I used to be quite passionate and up for it. Then we had a child. Having pre school children is not at all good for the libido. You are going to be married for 60 years. Wait until the children are at school before you decide your wife is a sexless being .

A day at the spa can be quite helpful in making a mum feel less like a mummy and more like a goddess.

bootsmonkey Wed 24-Jan-07 10:07:43

Couple of things - I too think that twice a month is pretty good going with 2 kids under 5!! And those first 3-4 years do slow things down tremendously. My DD is 4.5 and our sex life is only just getting back on track. THe tiredness, the drudgery of life, all get in the way. Also, valid points re: exercise and getting active again. I would also ask what contraception your wife is on as the Mirena/fake hormones killed my libido STONE dead!! It was nice to see it coming back to life once I changed to the non-hormonal coil. It was also hard getting back into the swing of things, but in time it becomes a natural part of your life again, and I agree that sexual intamacy leads to a closer relationship all round.

Personally I think man & woman will always be out of synch to a point, because a woman has a hormonal cycle that swings her up and down without any control. When I am ovulating I am completely up for it. Other times I'm not particulary bothered, so DH usually gets one shag happy week out of four...

lazyanna Wed 24-Jan-07 10:35:18

But if you don't like it, if it's not pleasant, just going on holiday isn't going to make you like it, and why should I feel that I have to like it? Why should anyone feel that they have to have sex?

anorak Wed 24-Jan-07 10:36:39

lazyanna, what you describe is not normal, so you can't expect to advise others to accept such a situation. I feel sorry for you, there are obviously deeper issues in your relationship that are manifesting themselves in your sex life.

frustratedman. You sound like a lovely husband and of course you should not be expected to go without sex. None of us married our husbands in order not to have sex with them. Of course when you have children under five things are very different. Your wife is tired. She feels like a machine, catering to other human beings' demands all day, and sometimes at night too. Your wanting sex can feel like yet another demand on her poor tired body and her drained emotions. Please don't take it personally. Don't give up. Carry on being devoted, romantic and loving. As your children grow the demands on her as a mother will diminish and she will have more time and energy to devote to being a wife and lover again.

I am just an ordinary 45 year old woman and I find life very tiring. My youngest child is 6. But my husband really does make me feel like a goddess. He has always treated me as if I were far too good for him, he is kind, patient, ever willing to understand. He has sometimes had to wait and wait for sex. Sometimes I really don't feel up to it, for weeks at a time, especially if I have other strong physical and emotional demands on me.

But I have learned that sometimes if I go ahead and do what he wants, even if I don't feel like it, he appreciates it a whole lot, and he never pressures me because he knows there is more to come. We have also learned that I feel more sexy at certain times in my cycle, and we both try to make sure we use those times.

After several years together and small children in the picture, your sex life doesn't take care of itself. It's all part of the ups and downs of being married. It takes effort from both sides to keep it alive and keep it so good that you both know there is nothing to be gained elsewhere.

You need intimacy, intimacy, intimacy. Talk about when you met, about your wedding, about all the romantic things. Remind each other what attracted you to one another in the first place. Plan your life together, go into detail, it makes you feel very secure in your partner's love.

If ever there is danger of an affair in a marriage it is now when there are children under 5 to care for. Be aware of the temptation and do not lose everything by falling for this cheap thrill. Take those feelings and urges and use them all to woo your wife, no one else. Don't give her the burden of worrying about stopping you from having an affair, because if you do she won't know if she's having sex with you to prevent this or because she loves you, and that would be an awful turn-off.

You need to remain patient while your children are small, and your wife needs to go the extra mile to try and please you as well. It sounds as though she is doing that.

We married our partners to love and fulfil them, to be there for them, and to have a relationship that is whole with them - to be their everything. Things may slow down when the children are small but with love and effort from both partners you can keep the fire stoked until the children are older and you re-discover yourself out of the saturation of early parenthood.

noddyholder Wed 24-Jan-07 10:39:53

Lazyanna what you are describing isn't the usual 'can't be bothered I'm knackered'but something psychological and a lot deeper.If you are a mother then you obviously have had sex so what has changed?It is awfully insulting to say that it is something to do to keep men quiet You need some sort of help to see how wonderful and fulfilling it can be even if you only do it once a year!

tiredemma Wed 24-Jan-07 10:43:33

Dp would be devastated if he felt that i was only 'putting up to shut him up'- thats awful.

I love my dp and im chuffed to bits that he still finds me attractive ( 2 stone later).

handlemecarefully Wed 24-Jan-07 10:51:09

I'm with lazyanna. It isn't 'sad' that some people don't like sex, and nor does it necessarily mean that a person who doesn't particularly care for sex is 'missing out' or has issues. It's rather patronising to suggest this.

It's just a preference thing - some people don't enjoy coffee!

oliveoil Wed 24-Jan-07 10:53:06

do you know, it never ceases to amaze me how people discuss their sex lives on here

<<wanders off wearing Prude badge>>

handlemecarefully Wed 24-Jan-07 10:54:10

Well as long as you don't go to meetups and nobody on here knows you - where's the harm oo?

SturdyAngel Wed 24-Jan-07 11:04:53

Handlemecarefully, I didn't mean to suggest that its "sad" she didn't like sex and that everyone had to enjoy sex.

I just think the statement that "eventuallly we all grow up enough to say "let's not do this any more" is wrong.

Sex is part of what makes a relationship. If you don't enjoy sex then thats fine but to say that its something we have to do- that is sad. I do not have to do anything I don't want to. I would feel that there was no future for my relationship if my DH did not want me in that way- but thats just me.

handlemecarefully Wed 24-Jan-07 11:07:26

I see what you are getting at SturdyAngel....

VeniVidiVickiQV Wed 24-Jan-07 11:39:26

I disagree.

Sex can and should be enjoyable. It's such a base instinct, with base physical responses, combined with a great deal of emotional responses. If you dont like it, then, I honestly believe that you are missing out. Even if its the case that you dont know what you are missing.

To me, its the same as saying you dont like laughing and you arent tickle-ish.

lazyemma Wed 24-Jan-07 11:52:20

I don't think there's anything intrinsically wrong with not liking sex at all. The only problems arise when you're in a relationship with someone who feels differently about it than you do.

youngmumoftwo Wed 24-Jan-07 12:13:37

Thanks for all the posts here, it certainly gives my responses to DH some backing.
Its true that after a day spent at home with 2 boys under 5 I feel like I have given all the emotion and caring I can. As soon as the two boys are in bed, I think "Phew, off duty for now!" and I just want to settle on the sofa and then crash into my lovely bed in my pjs. Sex is the last thing on my mind, unless DH brings it up, and then its and hour discussion at 11pm as to why I dont want it. I just feel that I have given all my affection all day (inc. DH..his washing, cooking his dinner, clearing up after him etc, he works from home so we are together 24/7) and I just want to stop and just exist by falling asleep!
I agree that we are in this for the long hall. I met DH when I was 17, he was the first guy I slept with. We managed to stay together when I first went off to uni, we did split up with each other in the 2nd year as I had a fling with another guy. We got back together again after 6 mths apart and then I fell pregnant in my final year. I have gone straight from being carefree at uni, to being a SAHM with 2 kids. I have never really worked (apart from 6 mths full time and that was really bad and resulted in my having a miscarriage). So after all this, I think we need to remember that there is many many years ahead for us to be us and not parents. WHat is important at the moment is that we get our kids started off, and then soon I can take a step back and concentrate on me and my DH. I am currently looking into what I can do in spet 2009 when the youngest starts school, and DH has said he is happy to pay for me to train or do FE. He is worried that if I dont, in 10 years time I will be fed up that all I did was give up uni and never had a life of my own.
Anyway, just had a long waffle, and will go now so that DH can read this upstairs in his office!!

OrmIrian Wed 24-Jan-07 12:49:31

precisely lazyemma. Abstinence is not weird or freaky. But it can be a problem in a relationship that was a sexual one where both parties don't feel that things have changed.

These days for me sex is mainly a pita - and no I'm not doing it wrong . It's enjoyable when it happens but not enough to make me want it more often. An analogy I like is that I enjoy long walks - 10 or 12 miles - I enjoy being out in the fresh air, the views, the solitude etc etc. My DH isn't so keen - if he does come along with me he is quite willing to accept that yes, the views are lovely and it's nice to be out in the fresh air but given the choice he'd rather not bother - the effort isn't worth it. Now that is how I feel about sex. I hope and expect that things will change once the kids are older and we have more time/energy to ourselves. But meantime any number of nights out/special evenings in/whatever isn't going to change my feelings. We compromise and keep each other reasonable happy - what else can we do?

madamez Wed 24-Jan-07 13:06:46

Nothing at all wrong with abstinence. Some people simply arent' interested in sex. Of course, sometimes what's going on is that a person's sexual desires are very specific and don't actually involve sexual intercourse at all (While I'm happy to discuss the entire range of fetishes and sexual diversities available, I'll kind of leave it till someone else wants to join in that type of discussion) - and those desires are not being met because the person feels embarrassed about them.

What I would say to the poster who doesn't want to have sex at all is: if you have a partner who does want sex, then you really should consider giving him/her permission to go get it elsewhere. That way everyone's happy and no one's suffering.

Caligula Wed 24-Jan-07 13:11:40

madamez that is just silly.

It ignores the emotional content of sex and pretends it's just another one of a range of leisure activities, like tennis or opera or belly-dancing.

It isn't. Not for the people having it, nor for the person left behind wondering if their spouse is getting more than just an orgasm out of their search for sex elsewhere.

To say nothing of the possibility of a pregnancy resulting from the meaningless shag.

noddyholder Wed 24-Jan-07 13:13:55

madamez I agree with caligula you are reducing sex to some sort of activity with no mention of the connection between 2 people who love each other.If my dp didn't want sex with me i would find little comfort in getting it elsewhere

3rdTriMossTer Wed 24-Jan-07 13:20:29

Frustrated man, if your dw is anything like me I would imagine that the following may help?


....and lots more foreplay.

By which I don't mean a quick ten seconds on each nip, a couple of seconds on the man in a boat and disappointment if she ain't ready!

I think when I was younger I was more up for it straight away, but now I'm older it takes me longer to get going, iyswim, maybe your dw is the same?

OrmIrian Wed 24-Jan-07 13:22:28

but 3rdtrimosster that assumes she wants it in the first place. IME once we get down to foreplay my libido is more or less on board but that doesn't mean that I was interested in the first place.

3rdTriMossTer Wed 24-Jan-07 13:28:14

I suppose, although if you already know there's gonna be no foreplay and it's not going to be much fun, you're not going to be as interested to start.

Then again my pg libido is all over the place atm so I would take anything I say with a pinch of salt!!

northerner Wed 24-Jan-07 13:37:21

frustrated man - this is really interesting reading about this from a mans perspective. My dh could write your post right now, and tbh it's causing real problems.

I love my dh, I fancy my dh, but at teh moemnt I do not feel like having sex. When we do it it's fab, but why do I not feel like it?

I wish I did. Dh feels rejected, I feel pressured, so there is no even hugging/hand holding atm and neither of us are getting what we want.

We have a demanding 4 year old, I work 4 days a week dh is full time so life is pretty full on. I wish he'd understand it's not him, and that given time things will improve.


Think I will print this out and let him read it.

Laughing at 3rdTri.....i'm not the only one who gets 'foreplay' like this then?!

I can remember when DP would take hours over me, until i had to beg him to stop because it too much to take- in a brilliant way!

lazyanna Wed 24-Jan-07 13:39:18

The idea that a man might want or need sex, and should be allowed to seek it elsewhere sounds like blackmail to me.

Message withdrawn

TenaLady Wed 24-Jan-07 13:46:43

FM I must be your wife! Nah, seriously im far too old!

All the comments below give you the reasons why she feels like this and I believe that it is true that domesticity kicks in for us gals.

I definately dont get out enough (babysitter problems)and my dh needs to woo me all over again. You know, flowers, arranging to meet for lunch, all those impulsive things that go by the wayside when the kids kick in.

By doing the above you will kick her into realising that you still exist. I know its hard when you feel rejected but try treating her like a princess and you will see the results (not always straight away)

I keep telling him but he aint taking any notice, so without he will go

Bugsy2 Wed 24-Jan-07 13:57:28

Just to add my own perspective. I really went off ex-H after I had my children. I felt very unsexy & he did very little to reassure me. I felt like I turned into a drudge & was no longer the sexy, carefree woman I had been before.
Funnily enough, since we split 3 years ago my appetite has returned with a vengence. Maybe we all want what we can't have or find difficult to get.
Not sure how that helps. Unfortunately women seem to get stuck in a bit of a rut & they perceive every nice gesture from their other half as a bargaining tool for sex.
I wonder if it would work if you were really nice, but seemed to have gone off sex. How would it be if you gave your wife a kiss & a cuddle in bed, told her she was gorgeous & then turned over and went to sleep. Maybe she would start wondering what she might be missing?

3rdTriMossTer Wed 24-Jan-07 13:58:14

DetentionGrrrl no you're not the only one!

noddyholder Wed 24-Jan-07 14:00:59

I think before kids the whole day is foreplay and you are just up for it.I agree it takes a bit of persuasion as time goes on but the more you do it the more you want to.

lisalisa Wed 24-Jan-07 14:18:46

Message withdrawn

madamez Wed 24-Jan-07 14:31:40

Caligula/noddyholder - just because you associate sex only with committed relationships doesn't mean that everyone feels the same way. It certainly doesn't mean there's any superiority in only-having-sex-when-in-love any more than there is in preferring your tea with or without sugar.
I am simply suggesting a move away from enforced monogamy as a possibility for people to consider.
And, just FYI, there are lots of people who don't insist on monogamy in their relationships and live perfectly happy, mutally respectful lives (well, as happy etc as other people. A sexually diverse lifestyle doesn't free you from financial worries/bad colds/work stress, natch)..
Lazyanna: just as everyone would (I assume...) agree that it's wrong to force, persuade or blackmail any unwilling person into having sex, it's not exactly right to prohibit another person from having sex - ever again - just because you have no desire for it.

Caligula Wed 24-Jan-07 14:41:34

Madamez I don't only associate sex with committed relationships. I'm just saying that as a solution to a marriage problem, looking for sex outside that marriage is not usually a realistic or sensible solution. It is usually a path directly to a worse problem.

I frankly don't believe you when you say that lots of people don't insist on monogamy and are happy together. Most people do insist on monogamy and I bet there are more of them (whether they're happy or not).

Yes for a few unusual people, open marriages are fine - that's their choice, I don't have an issue with it. For the majority of couples though, it is simply bad advice to advocate that they try and find a solution outside their marriage. It just doesn't usually work and you risk capsizing the whole relationship imo.

I agree that you don't have the right to declare that someone should never have sex again just because you don't want to, though.

madamez Wed 24-Jan-07 14:50:13

Caligula: OK, so when it comes to defining "lots of people" we could be here all day with neither of us right. In terms of people I know, like and spend time with (or at least did pre-parenthood) slightly less of them were monogamy-fixated than otherwise.
As to good or bad advice to people having relationship problems, I tend to think that a diversity of advice is more helpful than just getting one opinion (and don't get me started on the appalling industry in 'spice-up-your-marriage' books written by morons whose only quallification is having f*cked a footballer or two) which may not be suitable for your personality/taste/circumstances.

WHat I would say is if people in a struggling relationship experiment with additional partners having discussed it beforehand, even if the original relationship then comes to an end, there might be a better chance of an amicable parting than if (for instance) the sexually-frustrated partner siimply ups and shags someone else with no prior discussion... don't you think?

seasonsreasons Wed 24-Jan-07 14:53:35

3rd trimosster... 'the man in the boat' . Is this.. <whispers> ones fanjo?

seasonsreasons- surely you've met him?!

3rdTriMossTer Wed 24-Jan-07 15:08:33


The boat is the fanjo, the man sits at the top. When you stroke his head, he gets excitable and the boat gets wet.

seasonsreasons Wed 24-Jan-07 15:22:07 <hastily walks away with lurid mental images at forefront of mind>

3rdTriMossTer Wed 24-Jan-07 15:23:56

Sorry.... you did ask!

<runs away to let this thread return to the serious discussion it was before>

noddyholder Wed 24-Jan-07 15:29:04

Madamez you couldn't be more wrong but this thread is about a relationship and I don't think the op wants to seek sex elsewhere because he loves and desires his wife she just needs a bit of persuasion in that dept!

Caligula Wed 24-Jan-07 16:15:14

Hmm, if someone dealt with their sexual frustration by upping and shagging someone else, then that imo is not merely an issue about sex, it's an issue about what his DP/ DW means to him, what his marriage means to him, his attitude to hurting her, valuing her, respecting her etc., which would not be solved by them sitting down and agreeing that he can go elsewhere. His attitudes to her would still be the same. So nothing would be solved imo.

To say nothing of a very mechanical attitude to sex, which is extremely undesirable.

lazyanna Wed 24-Jan-07 16:36:12

Exactly Caligula! I think most people live quite happily without sex once they have grown up

Booboobedoo Wed 24-Jan-07 16:56:32

<pops in to snigger at Mossy's euphemism>

3rdTriMossTer Wed 24-Jan-07 17:05:02

Booboo it's terrible I lower the tone wherever I go!!

madamez Wed 24-Jan-07 17:46:17

Well when it comes to a choice between percieving sex as something enjoyable for consenting adults to do with each other, or something that you "live without once you've grown up" I know which I prefer.

I was simply suggesting to the OP and his partner (and anyone else who might be reading the thread and be having difficulties due to mismatched libidos) an option to consider/discuss, an option which can and does work for some people. No harm in that.

Booboobedoo Wed 24-Jan-07 17:50:40

Find the view that sex is something you generally grow out of slightly bizarre. Is sex only for kids then?

Personally I find it gets better as I get older. You tune in more quickly to your body's responses and have more confidence to communicate with your partner.

However, I'm having a baby in a few weeks. Is this the end?

youngmumoftwo Wed 24-Jan-07 18:01:53

With reference to my DH getting it elswhere, I would def. not be up for that. I feel that I am putting all my time and energy into creating a good environment to our young children and a base for my husband. He works long hours and is supporting us, so I have taken the role of cooker, cleaner, taxi etc so that my husband doesnt have to do this stuff. If he cant hang on for a while for me, then I dont htink he values me or our family. If he goes off for a quick service somewhere, that is basically admiting that sex is more important than me and the kids. I appreciate that he has needs and feels frustrated and that is the problem that we have. But, we are 26 and 27, we have done things a different way round, and once my boys dont need me 24/7 I will be available for my other boy!

Isyhan Wed 24-Jan-07 18:54:03

youngmumoftwo and frustratedman you're practically getting it on by both posting on same thread just transfer it to the boudoir. No seriously I was totally off sex after birth of first child for two years. A few years ago despite having another baby I just switched back on to it. Cant say why? I think I may have had PND with my first and a very traumatic birth didnt help. Who knows?

frustratedman Wed 24-Jan-07 19:02:30

I really appreciate all the feedback. But I have to say there are certain parts that I find very frustrating.

The onus seems to be completely with the male to get the problem sorted. Perhaps the thinking is that, if he is the one that wants the sex, the problem is all his to solve or at least until the woman becomes ready.

I am prepared to try my best but is there nothing a woman can do to take some responsibility of her own to improve her libido or at least manage the situation? Is it unreasonable for the woman to make romantic gestures or organise special evenings once in a while that spark a mutual feeling of passion!? Again I must emphasise that meaningless sex isn’t the answer for me but some willing could certainly change the dynamics of the situation a lot. It would at least show an acknowledgment of the concerns and help toward diffusing the situation.

Yes / No?

Scootergirl Wed 24-Jan-07 19:10:32

My DH would sympathise enormously with you - shame I won't tell him how to use MN and I sympathise enormously with your wife!
If it's any consolation, we were just like you from being pg with DD, who's now three, through DS, who's 9 months now, until quite recently. And it probably was partly down to me to take the initiative but frankly, I wasn't that bothered about the sex so didn't see why I should.
I just didn't feel attractive and felt almost like DH just wanted to sleep with me for the sex and anyone would have done.
Once I started taking some time for myself - even just shaving legs etc - and making sure I brushed my hair, wore clothes not covered in sick, that kind of thing.
She's just knackered and needs some space after being climbed on by two little ones all day, I imagine.
And don't take the foreplay thing too far - we broke our drought with a good series of quickies - and then lovely sleep for me!
Good luck to both of you

LostMe Wed 24-Jan-07 19:15:00

I don't think the onus is purely on you - but perhaps if you get the ball rolling.....haven't read whole thread but have you tried romantic night out? I feel very much like your wife seems to feel and sometimes it seems like an enormous effort to try and regain some intimacy with DH. With two children under 5 I feel like cleaner, cook, taxi, etc, way, way above feeling like wife and sexy female! Not fair on DH I know but it's true. We try and go out a couple of times a month together and it does seem to make a (small) difference.

Caligula Wed 24-Jan-07 19:24:35

fm - if you've done all the other bits like make sure you have an equal respectful relationship (which means different things for different people - for me, at the very least that means he does his fair share of housework and ensures that foreplay doesn't match 3rdTriMosster's gruesome description - pmsl at that btw) then yes, I do think a woman has an equal responsibility for ensuring that this problem is addressed. If one person in a relationship considers that something is a problem, then it's a problem for both people, and it's up to both of them to solve it.

For too many women though, there is simply no incentive to address the problem of the DH not having enough sex, because the DH is not addressing the problems they have - like valuing the job they're doing at home for example (not suggesting this is your case btw). If everything else in the relationship is rosy though, and the man is meeting the woman's needs elsewhere, then I do agree with madamez's view that it is unreasonable to expect someone to do without sex indefinitely. It's very sad to see something which could be a wonderful resource for a couple, being turned into a bone of contention. But there's usually a good reason why that happens. And the way to solve it is by open communication. (I'm finding it quite hilarious that you and your DW are openly communicating on the www btw - modern relationships are quite beyond me! )

Oh BTW something else struck me - you're both in your late twenties. Wait till DW hits her mid thirties, chances are, you'll think back nostagically to the days when she wasn't demanding sex twice a day. So hang on in there...

wheresthevalium Wed 24-Jan-07 19:24:48

I have to say that I have always been the one to want sex more than any partner I have had (even exDH when I had 2 babies 15 months apart). I would put this down to the fact that it has always been very important to me, I just really love sex.

I can understand the tiredness and drudgery part though, several of my 'mummy friends' hadn't even had sex again by the time I was producing DD2, each to their own.

Frustratedman, the only thing I can think of that hasn't already been suggested (I think) is for your DW to indulge in a little DIY without any input from you. Obviously this is only any good if she feels like it, but it may make her feel more like a woman and less like a drudge. You sound like a very caring DH, and brave for posting on here in the first place, you are obviously keen to have more sex, but only in a way that is fulfilling to you both.

Good luck to you both

DrDaddy Wed 24-Jan-07 19:46:31

FrustratedMan - thought I'd show a bit of solidarity to a fellow male on this thread!
Sympathise with you entirely and you've certainly sparked off some debate in our house. We've been discussing the same thing recently and had a good long heart-to-heart about how frustrated I feel (which is of course largely driven by testosterone) and how tired DW feels. We have 2 under 3. Of course, like you, I'm willing to wait, show consideration etc. I think what some of the earlier posters in this thread have suggested is correct: get out as a couple and try to recapture some of the early magic and then she will hopefully feel like reciprocating your romantic gestures. BTW - You're a good advert for proving that men value love and intimacy and not just a good bonk - though we like that too
Good luck.

lazyanna Wed 24-Jan-07 19:55:40

And what if despite your best efforts your wife turns to you and says that she doesn't want to have sex with you anymore - does that make her a bad person?

roseylea Wed 24-Jan-07 19:58:47

Hmmm... we also have 2 dcs under 5, and our lives are busy, and sex is something we both have to make a priority! My health is not that great and I'm recovering from pneumonia which obviously doesn't help, but...

I guess I've come to realise that there are certain things I do with / for my dh that make him feel really loved, really special. Cooking his favourite foods is one of them, and sex is another (letting him go and play golf is another! So a really good day for my dh would be a round of golf, home to a roast chicken dinner with sticky toffee pudding, then wild sex!)

TBH the things that make me feel really special and cherished are not the same things. For me it's a long walk or drive in the countryside with deep talk about life the universe and everything - that gives me a sense of 'connecting' with dh, of going beyond the immediate and everyday stuff that takes up most of our time (and parenting of course!) I do enjoy sex, a lot, but I know it means more to dh than it does to me, mostly for the reasons other posters have said here - tiredness by the evening, feeling un-sexy and pre-occupied with the ds and so on.

So yes I do make a positive effort to make myself feel sexy and there are evenings when I'd rather not, but I do make the effort because I know how much it means to dh and that he'd be that little bit less satisfied without it. And there are evenings when I initiate sex because I can see that dh needs it, even if he doesn't mention it himself.

IMO sex is one way of connecting with your dh which is emormously important to keep that bond strong, just as much as communicating or working together on issues or whatever - it's worth the effort and keeping it going through the times when it's not easy is so important IMO. When we are both really knackered we make dates, and agree that the following evening or whenever, we will have a lovely long time together!

lazyanna please give it a rest - fm's wife has not said on this thread that she never wants to have sex again. And btw it's got nothing to do with whether not wanting sex makes someone a 'bad person' or not. Where on earth did that come from? It's about two people trying to find a way round mismatching sex drives.

Your view that 'most people' are quite happy without any sex at all is bizarre IMO.

handlemecarefully Wed 24-Jan-07 20:08:29

"I guess I've come to realise that there are certain things I do with / for my dh that make him feel really loved, really special. Cooking his favourite foods is one of them, and sex is another (letting him go and play golf is another! So a really good day for my dh would be a round of golf, home to a roast chicken dinner with sticky toffee pudding, then wild sex!) "

I support that rosylea, I really do - but reassure me! - does he do the same (or rather similar) for you? It's not all one way traffic is it?

roseylea I think your dh is very lucky to have you! You sound very considerate.

frustrated man I don't really have anything to add to the great advice on here already - but I would just say there may not be a magic formula to make your wife want more sex right now.

Actually I lied - I do have one thing to add: hour long heavy chats at 11pm after a long tiring day (for both of you) does not sound like the thing to get anyone in the mood. Try to avoid over-analysing the situation - and try to make her laugh. I always find a bit of a giggle makes me more relaxed and therefore possibly more likely to feel like it.


LostMe Wed 24-Jan-07 20:14:21

Strangely if my DH makes it clear he wants it, it puts me off even more. Having a chat and a giggle about something totally different usually makes me look at him in a different light and remember why I fancied him in the first place!

snowishere Wed 24-Jan-07 20:30:03

I hate football???

snowishere Wed 24-Jan-07 20:30:23


Muddle Wed 24-Jan-07 20:54:11

fm, I don't know about youngmumoftwo but I very much relate to lisalisa's post so it may be that the lack of sex is a symptom rather than THE problem IYSWIM. The problem may be a lack of time to herself to do what she wants/ be her own person. If ymot has the childcare and money available to her then yes she should take some responsibility and organise some regular pampering, shopping, time off, etc so that she feels better in herself. It MAY lead to something, but I agree with others that it should not be expected. HTH

Glassofwine Wed 24-Jan-07 21:09:39

Have been keeping an eye on this thread - am thinking of changing my name to include the word Godess somewhere . Must remember to tell dh.

I do think that FM has a point about it not all being down to the man, perhaps if it was thought about in terms of being loving rather than sex. We have moved on now and the whole romance part of a relationship shouldn't just be down to the men, we women should be showing our menfolk at least sometimes why we want them in our lives. I'm not talking some whole retrograde 1950's housewife thing, I just mean a bit of equality - it does cut both ways.

Would like to reiterate Caligulars point a little earlier - just you wait till your DW reaches her mid/late 30's - I haven't had so much fun and I'm 38 .

Sounds as though its a bad habit/lazy on her part in a way. I can be guilty of the same, sometimes much easier to read the paper, watch tv. Sure my husband was rather I was in the front room with him than sat on here!

Its a bad trap to get into and you have to make a bit effort to change and possibly look at the reasons for it. I personally think sex is a fairly big part of a relationship and is important to maintain the closeness, passion, love etc with each other as grown ups/husband and wife.

I would get some counselling or a good book for advice. Sounds as though you have been pretty good with her anyway so keep up the good work (if nothing else!).

"But, we are 26 and 27, we have done things a different way round, and once my boys dont need me 24/7 I will be available for my other boy!"

Youngmumoftwo - I have a lot of sympathy for you and your situation, but this sentence struck me as a bit odd. It sounds like you are emotionally excluding your dh as well as sexually. Are you sure you can't do more to include him? Not just sex, but intimacy, making him feel important etc? it does sound like you're pushing him away.

littledetails Wed 24-Jan-07 22:01:58

Why has nobody mentioned alcohol? Both me and my DH are always tired with busy jobs each, two teenages and a toddler. Most nights we fall asleep on the sofa but we do try at the weekend to have a takeaway, watch a dvd and have a bottle of wine. The wine really relax's us and helps us forget our responsibilities (wink) and helps me forget my baby belly (blush)

roseylea Thu 25-Jan-07 08:43:58

Handlemecarefully, yes my dh is also very considerate towards me!

merryberry Thu 25-Jan-07 09:33:07

Foreplay, w/e away? Spice? Discussions about intimacy?

Nah not for me. I got my mojo back 2 weeks into our cleaners starting. I have 4-6 hours a week domestic help and as a result even found myself with enough headspace last week to wonder if nipple tassles hurt when removed.

FM you and your wife sound like you really do have a connection though and just being on here talking about it is a million steps ahead from many other couples going through a similar situation. I understand you feel that perhaps the woman should make more of an effort to do the romantic gesture thing. But speaking from my own experience I would really appreciate if my DH did something. I ALWAYS have to do the organising for anything. For him to just once, do something romantic, that wasn't hard but just required a little bit of effort would mean more to me than anything. I keep at him for us to have a night away. He's been promising this since last year. I suggested in the next few weeks, we drop the kids off at his brothers on the Saturday afternoon, go to a nice guest house we know not too far away and collect the kids by lunchtime the next day. But he then comes up with excuses about it being the wrong time of year, and he doesn't want to commit to anything because he's so busy at work. 15 BLOODY HOURS AWAY FROM THE KIDS IS ALL I ASK TO BE ME AGAIN but you'd think I was asking for 2 weeks in Bali. He can of course spend both days of each weekend scouring round car showrooms, doesn't have a problem with that! Of course it has now become a deeper issue for us which we need to sort out.

madamez Thu 25-Jan-07 14:06:57

FM and partner: something else that occurred to me (and if I'm wrong in my assumptions I don't mean to offend anyone) is I get the impression that neither you nor she have had much sexual experience with other people. No, I'm not going to suggest again that you shag other people - if it's not for you it's not for you - but the thing is (trying to put this as politely as possible) ttwo inexperienced people together can fall into a pattern of sex that really isn't all that thrilling for the lady, because neither of you know much more than the basics (I am really trying not to sound too condescending, but I'm quite old and have dealt with a lot of this sort of stuff professionally). So I would recommend some bedtime reading. Desire magazine is very good, as is Forum and both are fairly easy to get - just in terms of looking through and going, mm, fancy trying that? or No thanks, not that but maybe this.

SOme people might recommend Scarlet as a lady-friendly naughty mag, but it does tend to be more about shopping for stupidly expensive undies than anything else.

thirtysomething Thu 25-Jan-07 14:28:34

did your wife have a difficult birth/lots of stitches? This can be a very strong reason for avoiding penetration, as it can hurt for upwards of 3 years after th birth, or the fear of it hurting can turn you off completely.I would say foreplay is definitely the way to go...

Tamz77 Thu 25-Jan-07 14:50:45

OK I went right off it too after the birth of my ds and these were my reasons:

I was fat - put on 4 stone while pregnant.

Other half looked so fat and hairy and unappealing compared to my soft and sweet-smelling little newborn.

I was breastfeeding on demand; the psychology and hormones involved can interfere with libido.

Fear! Of getting ripped apart (again!) 'down there'.

Tiredness. Absolute exhaustion. DS was feeding 7 times a night and of course being *the woman* I was responsible for all housework too

Relationship with my now ex was bad to start with, he had been unsupportive during pg in fact we split up then tried again once ds was here; any problems you had before could have been exacerbated by having kids.

OK and I know it's p.c. to say that regular sex is a 'right' and high libidos are 'only natural' etc but in truth, any animal with young does not usually want to be repeatedly pawed by the male of the species; we are programmed to function for our children while they are young, not to entice (or re-entice!) mates! You may think you have a right to sex but remember she has no obligation to give it and that it is perfectly natural that she currently does not. Just remember how much you love her and that your marriage is not solely about sex. If you are being tempted by other women then it seems you are treating it as if it were.

Caligula Thu 25-Jan-07 17:01:09

Good point about being programmed to want to concentrate on our young in the months after birth Tam.

So much so that some cultures have a formalised time of several months where the parents of the baby are not allowed to have sex.

OrmIrian Thu 25-Jan-07 17:47:15

Somewhere on this thread someone (sorry to be vague) said that sex was a natural urge - I paraphrase . But surely the 'natural urge' is to procreate rather than to have sex per se. If that is the case perhaps it's quite reasonable for the female sexual urge to fade away after a baby is born and to a certain extent during bfing - and even disappear altogether when she passes menopause. There has to be reason why the stereotype is that older people don't have sex as much or at all. Sometimes it does feel as if we are obliged to be sexual beings all the time for ever.

kama Thu 25-Jan-07 19:19:41

Orm, for the last two years (my daughter is two hehe) I have had a natural FEAR of procreating, but a natural urge for pleasure, so not sure about that one!

tiredandgrumpy Thu 25-Jan-07 19:37:35

I've had these problems with my dh. He gets very grumpy and even 'nasty' when he feels he hasn't had enough. It seems very childish to me.

Still, we've seen there was a problem and I think dh is starting to realise that he needs to work on my brain if he's any chance of getting any. Leaving it to a bedtime whinge just won't work. It means little gestures, like helping with housework, or flowers out of the blue, or even just letting me have a little longer in bed on a weekend. These little things do add up and are remembered, even through the stress of a day with 2 young kids. He's also started to be a lot more gentle and recognises my need for an early night, a chat about the things we share (kids, kids & kids), a warm relaxing cuddle. Then I'm far more up for it and the sex is steadily getting better.

Tamz77 Thu 25-Jan-07 21:11:26

Yes agree with tiredandgrumpy, there is nothing worse than the grumpy sigh and tutting and cold shoulder or stomping off back downstairs etc when you've gone to bed with your man and refused sex. It kills confidence, it's emotionally horrible.

madamez Thu 25-Jan-07 22:25:00

Not wishing to blame/bully/belittle anyone here BUT, while it's OK to refuse sex (of course), *if * your refusal takes the form of "Get off me you selfish pig is that all you ever think about, you disgust me" then just maybe stomping off back downstairs in a huff is sort of understandable. IF the bloke has been trying his best to be helpful, and only asked very plitely.
Just a thought.

lazyanna Thu 25-Jan-07 23:06:25

*applauds Tamz*

Can you explain that to my DH please, and tell him to stop.. well, lots of thing lol

Tamz77 Fri 26-Jan-07 13:23:56

Well madamez I refused lots of times I have to say but my refusals never took that form. Any woman who reacted like that would probably imo have reached the end of her tether.

not to say that it's why people's fellas here are arsey about not having sex, but has anyone considered they may feel hurt / rejected / frustrated / unloved, and not able to verbalise it? (and no, i'm saying that means you should have sex anyway, but men have feelings too)

HappyDaddy Fri 26-Jan-07 13:32:29

Us blokes need to realise that sex is the first thing to go out the window when anything affects your wife / partner. Our bits have a mind of their own, women's generally don't.

DW and I didn't have sex for a year from when she was pregnant to a few months after dds birth. Yes I missed sex, but only with her. She kept telling me that she wouldn't blame me if i went elsewhere, but the thought never entered my head. I want her and her alone, if she doesn't then neighter do I. What's the point? She was ill or tired or just loved up with baby, I put my efforts into making her life easier, including doing the nightshifts. Nightshifts I loved as they were my time to bond with baby, and great to boast about at work next day.

Sure I looked at other women and admired their assets but no more than I do normally and no more than DW does. I was only tempted by my hand and I did develop a ninja grip as a result!

Sex and love are about respect as much as anything else. If you are so selfish as to put your hardon before dw / child / feelings then you need to re-evaluate who you are.

wish my DP did the night stuff Happydaddy!

HappyDaddy Fri 26-Jan-07 13:34:47

madamez, I now have an image of said bloke asking very politely - "excuse me, dearest but I was wondering if you may deign to consider allowing me to mount your goodself? You have an alluring rump and I'd be most grateful if you'd permit me to smack it".

HappyDaddy - nice to see that there are blokes out there who do understand

HappyDaddy Fri 26-Jan-07 13:36:44

DentionGirrl, I did feel a bit of the jealousy that men often get when new baby comes along. I decided that instead of trying to reclaim my dw through sex, which would be crap and unfulfilling as she wasnt up for it, I'd be better off bonding with baby myself. I volounteered for night duty and loved every second of it. I got to feel like a bit of a martyr for having an hour or less sleep a night too.

HappyDaddy Fri 26-Jan-07 13:38:26

Voluptua, maybe being brought up by my mum single handed helped... "don't you go expecting anything like that, my boy, she's knackered. i didnt bring you upto be selfish".

So the moral of the story is that men listen to their mothers and not their wives!

suzycreamcheese Fri 26-Jan-07 13:56:08 sound like you deserve to be happydaddy..

HappyDaddy Fri 26-Jan-07 14:37:13

Becauseimworthit - I already knew how to play it, my mum jsut decided to lay it on thick!

I'm very happydaddy!

youngmumoftwo Fri 26-Jan-07 15:35:04

Ok I don’t think that its lazy at all, I love my husband very much, I am affectionate to him, I don’t exclude him . Ok, we may have fallen into a bad habit, and we BOTH deserve a healthy sex life. But I don’t think that it’s the main priority right now. I know he is frustrated, but we do have sex, just not as often as he wants it.
We have two young kids who demand a lot of my time. The youngest is 1.5 and is currently teething, that equals broken nights for me. I get up and sort him out, so that my husband is not tired for work. I am responsible for practically everything except DH going to work. Surely while we are at the period of time where the boys are demanding me and need me, it is not unreasonable to expect a bit of compromise in other areas. We do have sex, maybe once a week. I am not depriving DH of any affection or comfort. Just the physical actions of sex, I am too tired or drained by the end of the day to do it.
I am slim and I although my body does bear the scars of children, I am not that bothered about it. I get dressed up, I make an effort, we go out, we have friends round. We don’t live for our kids; I just think that at this phase of our life, sex is a little low on the priority list.
I am surrounded by my friends who have no kids and are dedicating their time to their careers or travelling. They don’t have the responsibilities that we have, and I am not complaining about it. I just don’t think that it is unreasonable to not be thinking about sex as a priority right now. For me, being emotionally close is not about having sex (or making love), its about experiencing stuff together, its about having my DH as my closest friend, having a good talk, him helping me out when I am struggling. We are supposed to be a team, and if that means that I need a bit of time out on being up for it and sexy, then he needs to get that. It’s about being treated like his girlfriend, rather than the nanny. He isn’t really bad, but I don’t have a switch inside me that I can flick at night. After dealing with the monotony of full time motherhood, and him expecting me to serve up his dinner so that he can then go and watch tv, is not foreplay. Someone mentioned that women need a little more that men, and that’s true. If I go to bed feeling pissed off as I have found his dirty pants on the floor (and know that he thinks I will pick them up) I am not able to forget that when he starts cosy up to me.
That said, he has been quite different since he made the OP here. He has started to offer his help i.e., Which would you like me to do, bath and put the kids to bed, or clear up dinner? That’s going to put me in an equal position; I will no longer feel downtrodden and non duty 24/7
Anyway, again have waffled a bit!!

hotandbothered Fri 26-Jan-07 16:11:57

Don't let my dh read this! Once a week?! He's very lucky if he gets once a month

suzycreamcheese Fri 26-Jan-07 16:29:11

hot and bothered..think quality..everyone fluctuates etc..

madamez Fri 26-Jan-07 22:49:32

Youngmumoftwo: sounds like things are going to improve for both you and your DP in the near future then (and, no matter what, this is probably fairly universal) for one thing, tiny, fretful, teething DCs do tend to act as the World's Greatest COntraception but... there comes a point when they're bigger, less dependent, and parents start a)getting some kip and b)remembering what it is like to feel human. Good luck.

Monkeytrousers Fri 26-Jan-07 22:57:50

Your post could have been written by me a few years ago - and I'm a woman.

Resentments do build up and if your not careful they get out of control. We have so many problems communicating now I'm not sure where they begin or end.

I hope you can sort something out together.

satine Fri 26-Jan-07 23:03:54

I reckon Merryberry has hit on something, with her post "I got my mojo back two weeks into the cleaner starting"
That'd do it for me!!

LostMe Sun 28-Jan-07 20:04:01

Have just shown DH this thread as it is so 'us'! I have little sex drive (DS 2.5 & DD 5yrs neither of which sleep very well) & feel so guilty for it as love DH very much. It is weirdly reassuring that there are others out there in same position and feel that things WILL get better in time (if DH can wait that long!!!!)

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