Q: My husband won't have sex with me. We have been married almost 4 years now and he is bi-polar and a type 1 diabetic. When we were dating our relationship was top notch! We would make love and have lots of foreplay! He even made me O without even having sex. But once we moved in together things went down hill...1st I dealt with him being domestically violent and controlling but I put my foot down and said something had to change or I was gone, he got help and on bi-polar meds and he stopped being violent. Though in spite of the improvement, his interest in sex has just kept decreasing...and when we do have sex it is no foreplay or his interest literally dies...I have tried lingerie, hints, waking him up to sexual favors and even straight out saying I want you now!...sometimes I will get a "let me take some insulin and gimme an hour" or "I'm too busy." I am lucky if I get it 3 times a month! Now this is hard on me because I am very sexual (only 25) and I feel he should be (only 29!!) yet foreplay is gone, I can not remember my last orgasm...and when I do get sex it is him pounding away for 1-15 minutes and then I am left wanting more and all he wants to do is return to the PC or cuddle...yet he says me playing with myself, in his words "feels like you're cheating" what am I supposed to do? I am devoted to him and refuse to cheat, yet I feel ugly and lonely when I am left feeling so much desire for him and not seeing him desire me at all...he is not cheating, but my husband won't make love to me either...any ideas what we can do? --Ellen H.
A: Your statement that "my husband won't have sex with me" shows that complaining for more sex can come from a wife just as much as from a husband.
- We can't ignore the potential effects of the medications your husband's taking. A lot of medications lower the sex drive, so be sure to check into this as a side effect of the medications.
- Some men get a sexual-like release in other ways, such as video gaming. You mention his computer interest in "all he wants to do is return to the PC." It sounds like he's found other things that satisfy him more than sex.
- This is about much more than "my husband won't have sex with me." What else is happening here is that in this relationship one person is not being respected and loved. It's the same outcome as when he was being violent and controlling to you. So how come you haven't put your foot down on this the way you did with the domestic violence and controlling behavior?
- Get some professional help. Take this seriously, your complaint my husband won't make love to me isn't selfish and it's not just you wanting more sex than him. A marriage counselor can help you change what is happening in your marriage. And don't wait for him to be willing to go to a marriage counselor with you -- go without him.
--Kurt Smith, Marriage Counselor