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Advice – Husband is no longer interested in sex. [NSFW]

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/u/AJfish6729 in /r/sex writes…

“We’ve been together for 2 years and married for 3 months. Our sex life used to be great, although I’ve [23F] definitely always had a higher sex drive than he [29M] has.

As we got closer to our wedding, sex wasn’t really a priority. I started to realize that if I didn’t initiate it, it wouldn’t happen.

After we got married, we decided to try for a baby. We started having sex more, but surprisingly, I got pregnant on our first try. That’s great, but now we’re back to not having sex. He doesn’t really see the point since I already got pregnant.

We got in an argument over this recently. I’m frustrated because for over 6 months, I have been the only person to initiate sex. When we do have sex, I am the only person who takes an active role. I’m on top, I get him hard, he doesn’t make sure I’m physically ready for sex, and if I’m not physically ready, we just won’t have sex (instead of him simply helping me out).

He says he’s embarrassed about this because it’s just not something he’s interested in. What do I do? What do we do? I’m not thrilled about only having sex a few times a year for the rest of our marriage.”

Dear AJ Fish 6729,

First off. Congratulations on your pregnancy! Not a lot of people get to say that they got pregnant on the first try. I am so happy to hear that you’ll be growing an entire human being inside of you. So, so happy for you.

These are really challenging times. And you have outlined two specific points that stand out to me.

His words here reveal a lot about him.

“He doesn’t really see the point since I already got pregnant.”

This tells me that his perspective on sex is (unfortunately) very goal-oriented. It sounds like he has internalized a lot of his sexual headspace around sex and intimacy as something he HAS to do, rather than something he WANTS to do. Trying for a baby was a definitive goal in mind when he was more interested in sex with you. And now that the same purpose/goal of “getting you pregnant” is not there anymore, the same kind of motivation isn’t there.

I can speak from a very personal experience that having sex for the sole sake of creation does rob sex of what makes sex and intimacy feel rewarding: sense of risk. It is something that I’ve personally had to reflect on after my partner got pregnant with our child. Think of the last time you held off on paying off a bill until the last minute. It might have provided you a subtle sense of accomplishment to know that there was a danger of late fees being added onto your account? The thrill, the joie de vivre, is invigorating. In the same way, sex and intimacy also craves newness. Settling into an established pattern of this-then-this-then-that-and-its-over is not at all sexy. It might be beneficial for you to break up that routine and think about approaching sex from a different angle altogether. Start again from ground zero. If it means rolling around in bed together naked without intercourse, do so because you both want to. Commit to a re-connection and learn to crave each other’s flesh again.

Photo by Chevanon Photography on Pexels.com

“He says he’s embarrassed about this because [sex] is just not something he’s interested in.”

This also revealed a lot about where his current headspace is at regarding sex and intimacy. In specific, it tells me how he has personally internalized and perpetuated a really toxic mentality around sex as a male-bodied person.

In our culture, men are often told that their erection is a given, and that they are sexual beings who should always be interested in sex. This kind of mentality is so often perpetuated through popular media through male characters who never struggle with virility. And it is reflected in how often the topic of male sexual dysfunction comes up as if a lack of erection in het-intercourse is an inability or a failure upon the man. It is an incredibly damaging perspective to internalize because it’s clear and evident that sex and erection is not always a given. If we flip this around and say a woman who cannot get wet, we would not claim it as a failure on her part, would we? This is a concept that he will have to wrestle with on his own, to decouple his erection from exploring intimacy and sex with you. But it doesn’t sound like maintaining erection is really the problem for him, but rather in his general lack of libido.

I’ll add here that even if you aren’t pregnant-presenting at the moment, your body will be going through some intense changes in the coming months. Both you and your husband will have to quickly adjust to the developing changes in your body as the baby grows more and more. You might need to think a bit more about how much you want to continue investing in helping him along with the changes in your body and closing the gap of sexual disconnect, as that gap will continue to grow even with the best intentions from both of you.

I am really sorry to hear you are experiencing such a disconnect from your husband. I sincerely hope that you two can see eye to eye on reconnecting as lovers again… not just for the sake of your marriage, but also for the sake of the brand new human growing inside of you.

Good luck!

Tea Time with Tomato is an informative relationship and sex advice column for both monogamous and polyamorous folks. By submitting your post, you agree to let me use your story in part or in full. You also agree to let me edit or elaborate for clarity.

I want to hear your thoughts and feedback! Please feel free to send me your questions and comments at teatimetomato@gmail.com. If you liked my advice for this post, please subscribe below to get alerted when my next advice column is published!

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