Online marriage counseling: Fix a Sexless Marriage or Committed Relationship
Sex? You hint, plead, and complain… but nothing helps… still NO sex!
If this is true for you, then I know what you’re going through… and you are not alone. Sadly, many couples suffer from a sexless marriage or committed relationship.
Thousands upon thousands of healthy men and women are sex-starved.
There’s nothing worse than living closely with another person, yet feeling distant and alone.
Here are solutions to a sex-starved marriage — what you need to know and do
Sex is 90% brain and 10% genitalia (my estimate).
You heard that right! Good sex depends on “thinking,” not “performing.”
How you and your partner ‘think’ about each other, determines how you ‘feel’ about each other, and defines the ‘quality’ of your sexual relationship.
And, by the way, men can also be prickly about sex despite current stereotypes. If they don’t feel right about their partner, they can withdraw and push away their natural sexual desire.
Here is what you need to do for increased passion, romance, and sexual enjoyment (and it’s all about “thinking,” and not “performing).”
- Build your partner’s self-esteem. If you are a woman, tell your partner how much you need him. Praise him for all that he has achieved and his positive contributions to your life and the well-being of the family. If you are a man, tell your partner how much you enjoy being with her. Acknowledge her effort she puts into making you happy, comfortable, and how much you appreciate her achievements.
- Avoid anger. Positive regard for each other can only occur when your relationship is peaceful and harmonious. If anger is expressed, positive feelings for each other are impossible. Anger is the real killer of sexual romance as water is to a campfire. If anger is in your relationship, step #1 is to eject the anger!
- Spend time together. This is simple. However, many couples do not understand the importance of spending time together. To know each other, to be intimate with each other, you simply need to spend quality time together. Whether it is a vacation at an exotic resort or a quick trip to the local shopping mall, spending time together will bring you closer.
True story of sexual rejuvenation
Sue and Tom had been married for 11 years.
As the years passed, their sexual relationship gradually became nonexistent.
When I met them, they both felt distant from each other. The didn’t know what to do about their sex-starved marriage.
I gave them three suggestions:
- Each day mention two or three things you like about each other.
- Make a date night once a week and go out and have some fun.
- If your partner is doing something that you don’t like, convert it into a positive request. Don’t say what you don’t want, say what you do want.
When I saw Sue and Tom several weeks later, they were like a new couple.
They were relaxed, upbeat, and they radiated positive emotions.
A few months later, they shared the good news with me.
Sue was pregnant.
This was proof positive that their sexless marriage was no more!
Are you the reason for your sexless marriage or committed relationship?
Do you deliberately withhold romance and sexual intimacy from your partner?
If so, you need to take a close look at your actions for two reasons.
1. You are harming your relationship.
2. You are hurting your partner.
Whatever relationship problem you were trying to solve or whatever point you are trying to make, by withholding romance and sex and creating a sexless marriage or committed relationship, the result will be — regardless of your intentions — destructive!
Marriages and committed relationships survive and thrive because there is a mutual attraction between each partner.
Without this attraction, it’s very easy for the entire relationship to disintegrate or end in separation or divorce.
For most couples, sexual involvement creates the necessary attraction in all areas of the relationship. And without sex, attraction dies!
And with the death of attraction goes the desire to be a couple.
When you are deliberately withholding sex and romance, you are preventing your partner from having essential physical and emotional nutrients.
Ask yourself, would you withhold food from your partner if he or she were hungry? Unlikely.
Would you make your partner sleep on the floor if you were mad at him or her? No.
Don’t fool yourself into thinking, “When I deliberately say no to sex, I am NOT really hurting my partner!”
The truth is, withholding sex is an act of aggression, an act of hostility.
Yes, there are legitimate and natural reasons for declining your partner’s request for sexual intimacy. Here are a few of them:
- You are tired or ill.
- The two of you were arguing.
- You have low sexual desire for a valid reason.
- Your mind is distracted because of a problem.
- Your partner doesn’t take care of his or her physical appearance and he or she repulses you.
- Your partner has a pattern of being mean, irresponsible, or selfish and you have lost all attraction for him or her.
The above examples are all understandable reasons why you may decline to be intimate with your partner.
However, they are not deliberate decisions to “not have sex.”
Rather, they are natural reactions to something occurring in your life that reduces your sex drive.
When the situation changes, you intend to resume your sexual involvement with your partner.
Deliberately withholding sex to punish, prove a point, or because you are selfish and just don’t want to, does not fall in the above category of ‘natural reactions.’
Deliberately withholding sex is an act of aggression.
If you don’t find a way to channel your hurt, upset, or anger in a more constructive way, you will end up hurting your partner and putting your relationship at risk for many types of relationship problems — some that cannot be reversed.
Online marriage counseling exercise: How to stop withholding sex
Be completely honest with yourself. Answer the following questions:
1. What are the three reasons that you withhold sex?
2. Referring to the three ‘reasons’ in the above question, what are the hurts or disappointments that have led to withholding sex?
For example, you are angry because your husband doesn’t give you enough attention or you reject your wife because she treats you disrespectfully.
3. Referring to the three reasons for no sex, how can you fix or propose solutions to these hurts that have killed your sex life?
For example, I feel neglected, so I will suggest to my wife that we spend more time together so we will feel closer. Or I will suggest to my husband that we go for marriage counseling to deal with his affair he had many years ago that is still haunting us.
4. Choose a mantra, a saying you will repeat to yourself frequently that will help you maintain a clear focus not to use sex to hurt or punish your partner. Rather, you will use sex to build love, closeness, and long-lasting relationship.
Here are a few examples of a mantra:
- “When I give my partner pleasure, he or she will naturally be nicer to me.”
- “I am not perfect. I do not expect my partner to be perfect. I will be quick to forgive and forget so I can be in a good mood and a willing sexual partner.”
- “Being angry is just too hard. I am going to choose to be more accepting and loving toward my mate.”
Pick a mantra for yourself. Write it on a piece of paper so you will remember it and repeat it often?
5. What would be some of the first signs your partner will notice when you start to be warmer, more affectionate, and positive with him or her? Write your answer.
6. How will more sex in your relationship change how your partner treats you? Write your answer.
7. How will more sex improve your relationship? Write your answer.
* * *
You’ve struggled long enough with a mediocre or even a dead sexual relationship.
You listened to those sexual experts talk about technique to enhance your sexual performance, but it has not helped.
Still, you don’t need to just settle…
Take to heart and put into practice the above advice.
Together with your partner, infuse new levels of desire and enjoyment in being romantic and sexual with one another. Once this happens, you can then discuss technique.
Abe Kass, MA, RSW, RMFT, CCHT., is a Registered Social Worker, Registered Couple and Family Therapist, Certified Hypnotherapist, and award-winning Educator. He has a busy clinical practice in Toronto, Canada and throughout the world using the phone or Zoom.
After many years of clinical practice and research, Abe concluded that practical solutions requiring a focused effort of no more than a few minutes a day for very specific relationship problems were critically needed. GoSmartLife Publishing House has been created to fill this need.