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Does my DH have 'problems'?

(20 Posts)
noddyholdershat Wed 31-Dec-14 10:46:35

Have name changed for this, as, quite frankly, it's embarassing.

My DH and I are having a 'spring clean' of our marriage, getting everything out in the open after a bumpy year. A bit of background, we've been together for 18 years, married for 15 years and have 3 children aged between 14 and 9.

One thing that has been slightly bothering me for over 14 years is that he can't 'get it up' without being manually stimulated. This started when I was pregnant with our first DC and he's never had a spontaneous erection since. He now says it's because of his age - but he was 24 when it first started happening, hardly over the hill!

I used to think that it was normal, just the first flush of a relationship wearing off, but now after reading some posts on here I am beginning to wonder.

It makes me feel like he doesn't find me sexy (although he states otherwise), especially as the first time it happened I was massively swollen from pregnancy.

So I suppose my question is, is this normal or does he need to seek help?

InfinitySeven Wed 31-Dec-14 10:50:34

No, it's not normal.

It could be caused by any number of things, from the medical to the psychological, but he should mention it to his GP so that anything serious can be investigated. If no medical cause is found, he'll be referred to a sexual therapist.

To be honest, until he's taken those steps, I don't think your spring clean will do any good. It's a massive elephant in the room. He's waited 14 years to get it looked at, which can't have been easy for you, and won't be good for him.

I can completely understand that it's embarrassing for him, but so are smear tests and everything else that happens to just have to pull your socks up and get through it. Refusing to would be a big statement about how much he wants to save your marriage.

Kristingle Wed 31-Dec-14 10:54:42

What infinity said

GoatsDoRoam Wed 31-Dec-14 10:57:39


The fact that this started when you were very visibly pregnant makes me wonder if he has a madonna/whore complex going on, where you are now "the mother" and therefore not "sexy". But that is just wild supposition at this stage. As Infinity says, he needs to show willing to find the root cause of his problem. And go through with it.

noddyholdershat Wed 31-Dec-14 11:03:25

Goats the madonna/whore thing is exactly what I have said to him, but on the other hand we do have good (quite often 'dirty' blush) sex, it's just that he has to be manually stimulated in order to do it.

Kristingle Wed 31-Dec-14 11:04:09

Does you DH use porn ? He might be dependent on it to get an erection .

Doesn't he get a spontaneous erection first thing in the morning ?

It's not age at all - my DH is decades older than him and has several medical problems that can cause this ( diabetes and high blood pressure ) and he is fine .

SolidGoldBrass Wed 31-Dec-14 11:10:56

When you say 'manually stimulated' does this mean you have to sit there wanking him for half an hour before you get any pleasure for yourself, or does he pop up with just a couple of pulls? Because if it's only a quick tug that's needed, is it really such a big deal? It could simply be that a hand on his knob is actually his top turn on.

noddyholdershat Wed 31-Dec-14 16:56:26

He did use porn for a long time, he works away and used it then, but has not been using it for about 6 months now. He says he doesn't get a spontaneous erection in the actual morning, but will wake up with them in the night.

I wouldn't say that I have to spend half an hour on him, he can do it himself or I can do it, about 5 mins is about normal, he does lose his erection quickly if nothing is done.

It is a problem to me as it makes me feel very undesirable, which in turn makes me not really enjoy sex as much as I could do.

gatewalker Wed 31-Dec-14 17:52:19

There is the possibility that he has desensitised his penis from masturbating to porn -- aka the "death grip". It is a very pervasive problem, and requires remedial treatment of some kind.

Northernparent68 Wed 31-Dec-14 18:38:23

The penis can not be de sensitised throughorn use, that is just an urban myth and a variation of it ll make you blind.

It sounds as if he just needs a bit of foreplay, is that so bad ? Do not take it personally, he clearly still finds you attractive.

kingofhearts Thu 01-Jan-15 18:23:47

Male perspective if it helps.

I started having problems maintaining a reliable erection in my late 30s. No obvious reason. Just happened. Like your DH I needed some 'manual' help to get it up. Not surprisingly it negatively affected the way I felt about sex.

Viagra solved the problem. Instantly. It gave me back my confidence. And ended my embarrassment. Having popped a pill, and waited an hour, I was able to develop a robust, long-lasting erection immediately I was sexually aroused.

Your DH's problem could be psychological (I'm a psychotherapist so have some knowledge/experience of this) and it could be worth seeing a therapist.

But the most pragmatic solution would for him to discuss the matter with his doctor. Pfizer's patent on Viagra ran out last year and you can now get generic alternatives with exactly the same active ingredient for as little as £2 a pill.

duplodon Thu 01-Jan-15 18:31:47

Why does it make you feel like you're not sexy? A lot of women never climax without manual stimulation and maybe it's just something he likes. Is there another reason you feel it is a big deal? You say it didn't bother you until you read about it on here, so is it the idea it isn't normal that is causing you pause for thought? If so, I'd just try not to worry or overthink it. I think the idea of it being madonna/whore is really far-fetched, especially if you have enjoyable sex. It just doesn't seem a tremendously big deal to me.

sakura Thu 01-Jan-15 18:35:29

Northernparent, porn users readily admit that it takes a lot to get them stimulated and they have to switch to harder porn as time goes on in order to be able to orgasm. Many also say they cannot get it up with a real life woman. Not an urban myth.

Branleuse Thu 01-Jan-15 18:42:14

i think if he can get an erection, climax, and you actually have a decent interesting satisfying sex life then this is a minor detail, and the equivalent of him just expecting you to be oiled up and naturally ready for action without any help. Would be nice, sure, but dont make a problem when there isnt one.

GristletoeAndWhine Thu 01-Jan-15 19:01:01

So if you kiss, cuddle and whisper a few filthy thoughts to each other he doesn't get aroused? Yes I think that is a bit unusual, but not necessarily a problem, if he is otherwise showing an interest and you are actually having good sex.

gatewalker Thu 01-Jan-15 20:55:36

Northernparent -- I am a sexologist. Yes, the penis can get desensitised through the kind of masturbation that happens alongside porn consumption.

TheHermitCrab Fri 02-Jan-15 01:31:31

The only reason I would even slightly worry about the situation would be for medical reasons.

If you were happy with your sexual relationship with him until you started reading on here and discovered what was "normal" then don't. Although MN is a great place for advice/chat/info, you can't really read other people's situations as "normal" it's not worth the comparison.

Many women need foreplay and are not ready and raring to go at the thought of sex, so having to help him out for 5 mins or so seems all part of it and not a huge deal. Especially if he hasn't lost interest in sex and you are still having good and sometimes dirty sex as you say ;)

Getting all wound up immediately about porn and deathgrip is the whole reason why you shouldn't take MN as an example of the "norm"

But as the first reply said, a trip to the docs should be done just for a check. We all have to have these embarrassing trips for one reason or another, and should be part of your "spring clean"


noddyholdershat Fri 02-Jan-15 23:51:31

Thank you everyone, he is going to go to a doctor to see if there is anything physically wrong. I do think it's probably mental rather than physical though. I suppose I am asking a bit much for him to be turned on instantly, it would be flattering if he did though...!

TheHermitCrab Sat 03-Jan-15 00:26:10

That's great that he is noddy! And if there isn't anything medical, it may just be he takes time to "warm up" His body can change like anyone elses, doesn't mean there is anything wrong with you smile (or him!)

Good luck xx

IWillRoar Sat 03-Jan-15 07:45:59

Yes it would be flattering grin but I think what thehermit said otherwise. See if you can just accept it is what it is, doesn't sound like too much is wrong with your sex life, lucky you!!!

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